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Subject: Adhesive for archaeological ceramics

Adhesive for archaeological ceramics

From: Robert K. MacDowell <robert<-at->
Date: Monday, June 8, 2009
    **** Moderator's comments: Please respond directly to the

Reference the post by Helena Jaeschke on this subject, I would be
very interested in knowing more about the techniques she has used
and particularly the solvents used. We have used Paraloid B72 here
since circa 1970, but as an adhesive we have found that the solvents
we have tried evaporate rather quickly with the result that the
adhesive thickens appreciably before one can get pieces being bonded
into their absolute best alignment and tightest fit. Also, if much
solvent is used, the B72 adhesive tends to 'wick' into pottery and
other porous objects, leaving an insufficient amount at the bonding

Another issue is the fact that when any adhesive gets on the porous
surfaces that will be visible in the finished work, the appearance
of the ceramic is often unalterably changed because some of the
adhesive penetrates the surfaces and sets up.

We'd really like to use B72 in more of our projects because we have
found it to be very stable and resistant to yellowing and it offers
relatively easy reversibility, but so far haven't fond the ideal
technique for using it. Many of our projects are not part of museum
collections, and we cannot control the amount of handling and abuse
the finished work will have to tolerate, making this issue even more

Any further information on this will be highly appreciated.

Robert K. MacDowell
MacDowell Restorations
39845 The Narrows Road
Waterford, Virginia 20197

                  Conservation DistList Instance 23:5
                  Distributed: Thursday, June 11, 2009
                        Message Id: cdl-23-5-004
Received on Monday, 8 June, 2009

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