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ANTIQUE FURNITURE RESTORATION DISCUSSION BOARD

J.C.Degan Plate Style Dinner Chime

Posted By: Michael Carter <MBCMESS@aol.com> (spider-mtc-tf072.proxy.aol.com)
Date: 12/3/1 00:37

I have a refinishing question for anyone at this point.

The problem is that I have just come into a J.C. Degan Plate Style Dinner Chime made by the J.C. Degan Company in Chicago. The date on the Musical Book (containing military music and calls to Assembly) is dated 1917. The Degan Label on the back of the chimes list dates from August 6, 1889 to December 29, 1931. There has been some "alligatoring" of the finish, and it is hard to tell if the flat surface is actually stained or painted. The intricate scroll fillagree trim around the sides is definitely stained and in decent condition.

The person that I have inherited this from has lived in Florida for numerous years and has stored the Dinner Chime in a closet, where the finish has become cracked and uneven, and the chimes (similar to those on a xylophone) have become pitted.

I would love to refinish the chimes and place them in my hallway, but I am very much afraid of damaging the value of the piece.

Can you recommend a product or method of restoring the finish of the piece that would not devalue it, and would having the chimes replated destroy the value of the piece as well? I have seen the recommendation for the use of laquer thinner to dissolve and re~distribute the finish. Would that work here?

I have contacted several places on line trying to find any information on the item and its history, and no one seems to have any ideas. I do have pictures that can be e~mailed should anyone need them to help with a solution.

Michael Carter

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