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Subject: Oak panelling

Oak panelling

From: Paul Storch <paul.storch<-a>
Date: Monday, December 8, 2014
Susan Lunas <bookbinder<-a t->preserveyourtreasures< . >com> writes

>This question comes from a private party who knows about historic
>conservation/preservation, but has no access to our List.
>    How should one care for oak panelling that lines the interior
>    foyer of a 65 year old structure?  Should the panelling be oiled
>    periodically? Dry cleaned with something?  Left alone? Thank you
>    for your help.

As always when deciding on a conservation treatment, the course of
action depends on the condition of the object and materials.  Is the
paneling coated with varnish or shellac?  If so, what is the overall
condition of the coating and underlying wood?  Are there losses and
scratches.  evidence of water damage, etc., or is the paneling
generally intact and in good condition?

If it's in good condition, i.e. basically unchanged since
installation, then just a surface dry cleaning with dust cloths
followed by an application of carnauba/beeswax blend paste wax (e.g.
Johnson Paste Wax, Butchers Wax, etc.) should be enough to
rejuvenate the surface appearance and provide some protection.  The
wax should only be reapplied if it gets worn off from handling or
other use.  Oiling is not recommended since it unnecessary to 'feed'
wood with oils.   Maintaining the environment (temperature and
relative humidity levels) that the paneling has become accommodated
to over 65 years and protecting it from water damage are the best
courses of action.

Paul S. Storch
Project Specialist III /Sites Collections and Exhibits Liaison
Facilities-Historic Properties Department
Facilities and Risk Management Division
Minnesota Historical Society
345 Kellogg Blvd. West
Saint Paul MN 55102-1906

                  Conservation DistList Instance 28:29
                 Distributed: Monday, December 15, 2014
                       Message Id: cdl-28-29-006
Received on Monday, 8 December, 2014

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