The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 16, Number 7-8
Dec 1992



Adhesive Testing at the Canadian Conservation Institute-An Evaluation of Selected Poly(vinyl acetate) and Acrylic Adhesives, by Jane L. Down, Maureen A. MacDonald, Jean Tetreault and R. Scott Williams. (Environment and Deterioration Report No. 1603) Canadian Conservation Institute, Ottawa, 1992. 30 pp. + 22 tables.

The permanence of adhesives is of central importance for conservation and preservation, but the normal method of testing for permanence by oven aging is inappropriate for most adhesives, since high temperatures cause them to melt or change in other ways not correlated with natural aging. Until the CCI began this project eight years ago, no organization was willing to bite the bullet and start doing natural aging. CCI has been aging the more significant PVA (which they refer to as PVAC) and acrylic adhesives at room temperature, in the dark and under fluorescent lamps, in the form of emulsions and films. This report describes the changes in pH, volatile emissions, embrittlement and yellowing, and contains a vast amount of valuable data. Several adhesives were identified that are suitable for conservation applications, though one should bear in mind that the manuacturers may discontinue or change the formulation of any adhesive at any time without notification, and in fact already have done so with at least two of the eight PVAs identified as suitable. Those eight suitable PVAs were: Jade No. 403, Mowilith DMC2, R2258, Beva 371, Rabin's Mixture, Elvace No. 1874, Weldbond, and Promacto A1023.


La Desacidification de Masse des Livres et Documents, by Anne Liénardy and Philippe Van Damme. Institut Royal du Patrimoine Artistique; Parc du Cinquantenaire, 1; 1040 Bruxelles. 1992. 247 pp. ISBN 293005400X. (In French)

This report is the Belgian equivalent of the one done by IPST for the Library of Congress, comparing the efficacy of the various deacidification processes being considered for use in the Library. The methods tested by the Belgian Institut (as listed by them) were: Wei T'o, Sablé, Bookkeeper, DEZ, FMC, Vienna, and BPA.

The criteria chosen by them as a basis of evaluation led them to reject the BPA and the Vienna methods. Of the remaining five methods, they concluded that the DEZ and Bookkeeper methods were preferable to Wei T'o, Sablé and FMC.

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