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Subject: Labelling plastic

Labelling plastic

From: Dianne Reuby <d.reuby<-a>
Date: Tuesday, April 12, 2005
I'm the (volunteer) Collections Manager at the Museum of Computing
in the UK. We're the only dedicated computer museum in the UK,
although many of the bigger museums have computer sections.

We're working towards accreditation with the Museums, Libraries and
Archives Council, and the requirement for labelling is:

    *   Secure: The chances of accidental removal of the label or
        mark from the object must be extremely low;

    *   Reversible: It should be possible for a label or mark to be
        removed intentionally from an object, even after 50-100
        years with as little trace as possible;

    *   Safe for the object: Neither the materials applied to the
        object nor the method by which they are applied should risk
        significant damage to the object;

    *   Discreet but visible: The recommended methods should not
        spoil the appearance of the object, nor obscure important
        detail. However, the number should be visible enough to
        reduce the need to handle the object;

    *   Convenient and safe for staff and volunteers: Materials
        should be easily available in small quantities at a
        reasonable price, and should not pose significant risks to
        health if used in accordance with the guidelines recommended
        by a local CoSHH risk assessment.

I've been looking into labelling our items, but I have found very
little information available on the best way of labelling plastics.
I've contacted various bodies for advice, and I've had some
excellent feedback but I thought I'd also see if other list members
can give me any info.

One suggestion has been 4B pencil--but many of our items are black
plastic. Other suggestions have been tying on labels where possible,
or labelling the storage rather than the artefact itself.

Can anyone give me more information?

Dianne Reuby
Collections Manager
Museum of Computing, Swindon

                  Conservation DistList Instance 18:51
                  Distributed: Tuesday, April 26, 2005
                       Message Id: cdl-18-51-033
Received on Tuesday, 12 April, 2005

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