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Method For Cleaning, Rust Removal And Watermark Clarifying

 
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Valued Member

United Kingdom
30 Posts
Posted 12/02/2020   11:56 am  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add tonyowen to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I'm looking for a simple method or methods for stamps over 50 years old
1] cleaning stamps
2] neutralising rust/foxing on stamps
3] cleaning back of stamp so that the watermark can be seen

regards
Tony
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United States
2357 Posts
Posted 12/02/2020   12:36 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add txstamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
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Valued Member
United Kingdom
30 Posts
Posted 12/02/2020   12:47 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add tonyowen to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi txstamp, no message with your reply OR do I have to do something to see it?
regards
Tony
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United States
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Posted 12/02/2020   12:50 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add txstamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi there !

My comment is that this will be interesting to watch, as cleaning of stamps is a highly controversial, and complex subject.

Usually the answer is "don't", but foxing and similar issues are real problems that collectors run into, and what to do about these, once they've happened, are real problems, often without good solutions.
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Canada
127 Posts
Posted 12/02/2020   2:29 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PMStamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It really depends on what type of stamps - used or mint. If they are mint I would suggest leaving them alone. If they are used and have paper or hinge remnants on the back, soak them in warm water until the paper or hinge float off. Warm water generally will also clean a lot of other "crud" off of dirty stamps.
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United Kingdom
5466 Posts
Posted 12/02/2020   4:04 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Tony - do be careful if soaking surface-printed GB Queen Victoria stamps, as it will damage the colours.
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Posted 12/02/2020   4:26 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Good conservation stewardship is to use clear, clean, cool water. There are other things that can be done to make a used stamp look better/cleaner but this moves you into 'restoration' as opposed to 'conservation'. It is like getting a nice antique desk, refinishing it will make it look better but also makes permanent changes that can never be undone.
Don
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Canada
127 Posts
Posted 12/02/2020   4:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PMStamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Don without creating a disagreement, why are you recommending cool water? I personally have found that cool water takes at least twice as long for the gum to release any envelope or package paper. The longer a stamp soaks in water the more likely I have found that colour will bleed, especially with red stamps or coloured envelopes. Anyway I'd appreciate hearing why. Thanks.
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Posted 12/02/2020   5:12 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agreed that warm water is faster, but warm water is more likely to cause fugitive inks (stamp or envelope) to go into solution. I also think that some folks will see 'warm water' and think hotter is better. Given that this is a large public community and very 'experience diverse' members, I think posting the safest method is the best approach.

We should also mention that folks should change their soak water often, allowing the solution to become filled with gum and other contaminates can coat the stamp with all kinds of crud.
Don

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Australia
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Posted 12/02/2020   5:58 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Good conservation stewardship is to use clear, clean, cool water.


Absolutely,
Flirt with warm water at your peril.

Not worth soaking any stamp on coloured paper, observe patience and seek another copy. You may cut around the stamp, 5mm border and scan
if you wish.

Neutralising foxing can be done, Google philately foxing and get advice from reputed Philatelic conservators.

Whilst a stamp is in cool water, can be the best time to see a watermark. Otherwise use Watermark fluid.

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