- Aqueous treatment of water-sensitive paper objects: capillary unit, blotter wash or paraprint wash?
- Journal of Paper Conservation
- Volume | Issue number
- 12 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Van 't Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS)
Blotter washing andwashing with the capillary unit are both methods used for aqueoustreatment of water-sensitive paper objects. The challenge of thistreatment is to remove water-soluble products while keeping thewater-sensitive medium in its place. In this article the two methodsare compared, along with a third method referred to as Paraprintwashing. This is a washing treatment similar to blotter washing,but using Paraprint OL 60, the viscose non-woven fabric recommendedin the literature for use with the capillary unit, instead of blottingpaper. Preliminary experiments were carried out to clarify the principlesbehind the capillary unit treatment, and the method was adjustedto use a level surface instead of the slight slope recommended inthe literature. The comparison between the different methods wasmade by washing samples of new, unaged papers, that had been colouredby immersion in a highly water-soluble red food colouring dye (Ponceau4R) to simulate the water-soluble compounds like discolourationand acids that washing is usually meant to remove. After treatmentthe samples were compared visually. Both capillary unit treatmentand Paraprint washing gave better results than the more traditionalblotter wash. The capillary unit worked well with papers that weteasily. For papers that did not, Paraprint washing was better suitedas it washed out the colour more effectively and evenly. Finally,originals were successfully treated applying the results of this study.
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