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Cleaning Antiques

Cleaning Antiques

 

April is here and you should be thinking about getting the blahs of winter out of your home by doing some spring cleaning!

Antique cleaning has often been deemed a “no no” by appraisers and collectors alike, removing the “patina” from them can lower their value or even ruin them. This week we share an article from Home Museum with tips on how to clean certain antique materials. Please note – We are not affiliated with Home Museum and ask that you do your research before attempting to clean antiques yourself. If you do not feel comfortable with cleaning them yourself, seek out a professional that can clean/preserve them.

Painted Wood – use paint thinner VERY carefully & go slow. If the paint is a milk or egg-based paint, paint thinner may not work. Be sure to use cotton swabs, soft cloth, & artist’s brushes as your abrasive.

Painted Plastic – use distilled water or Triton 100 surfactant and again use cotton swabs/soft cloth/artist’s brushes as your abrasive being sure to dry the item quickly, especially if the item is made of celluloid.

Painted Metal – use distilled water or Triton 100 surfactant and again use cotton swabs/soft cloth/artist’s brushes as your abrasive being sure to dry the item quickly to avoid rust. This tip applies to non-painted metal as well.

Cast Iron – use paint thinner or lacquer thinner (for stubborn gunk), being careful not to use it on painted parts (such as on cast iron toys/banks). You can be a little more aggressive using steel wool or a fine sand paper as an abrasive. Black shoe polish can be used on cast iron cookery (but don’t cook with it afterwards!).

Silver – use a 50/50 mix of acetone & alcohol mixture and use powdered chalk (from a garden supply/home improvement store) as an abrasive. Never use cling wrap on silver as the chlorine gasses emitted from it will etch silver.

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

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