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Subject: Marking ceramics

Marking ceramics

From: Kasia Maroney <km99>
Date: Thursday, July 25, 2002
Georgia Fox <gfox [at] csuchico__edu> writes

>Over the years, in writing accession and artifact numbers on
>ceramics and other objects, I have tried using Acryloid B-72 in
>acetone both from my own lab and even the commercially prepared
>variety, but when applying the B-72 over the India ink numbers, the
>ink still smears.  Has anyone found a good formula that keeps the
>ink from smearing?  Is methanol a better base for the B-72  Any
>recommendations?  Many thanks in advance.

The problem is probably less your B-72 solvent than your ink.

B-72 is indeed soluble in toluene and acetone, but most of the
commercially available fluid preparations are diluted with
isopropanol, ethanol, or methoxypropanol.  And the principal
ingredients in most India inks are carbon black, shellac and
denatured alcohol.  A topcoat of B-72, no matter what it is diluted
with, can easily re-dissolve a thin layer of alcohol soluble ink.

Therefore, when painting numbers on ceramics, we've had really good
luck here with water-based inks instead of true India inks.  Higgins
is a brand that works really well, is quick-drying, and comes in
black, white, and red.  A quick swipe of B72 will not smear a good
water-based ink that has been allowed to dry completely.

Kasia Maroney
Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art
Cornell University

                  Conservation DistList Instance 16:9
                   Distributed: Monday, July 29, 2002
                        Message Id: cdl-16-9-006
Received on Thursday, 25 July, 2002

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