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ANTIQUE FURNITURE RESTORATION DISCUSSION BOARD

Re: Canvas trunk

Posted By: James Schooley <jschooleyfamily@earthlink.net> (pmspen1-62.rconnect.com)
Date: 2/11/3 20:12

In Response To: Canvas trunk (Selene)

First I don't remove the canvas as it is original, I don't know why people seem to think that this is the thing to do. But if one simply must in order to salvage a decent look go ahead. Use a sharp utility knife and cut as close as you can to reveal the pine underneath. You may find that the wood underneath if damaged or inferiour, so enter at your own risk. The old hide glue now needs to be removed, use white vinegar and elbow grease and a scouring pad. Make sure to clean completely before you sand and finish. Van Dykes sells the rivets, some are a split rivet, these are fairly easy to install. I take a big hammer or a five pound steel bar I have cut just for this purpose, hold this against the rivet head. Now smack the tail with a hefty hammer. The tails of the split rivet or cut nail or such, will flatten around an bury it's self into the soft wood. Don't over do it as the force of this action can split the wood, I like to practice on a scrap first. As for removing the nails and rivets, they will break off when you grab them by the tails with a good needlenose locking pliers, or the like. Some more serious rivets will have to be drilled out with a sharp drill bit that is just a little bigger than the shank, and a center punch to get the drill to stay in the center of the head. The drill bit will cut right through the head and the tail and shank will be removable. All this will make a mess of the paper inside, if it needs replacing fine, but if it is good you will need to proceed carefully. I cut out major pieces that can't be saved and take them to a shop that does full color copying. I have the best paper reproduced in color and patch up what has been damaged. As for the original canvas, I like to patch and match the paint so that my touch-up results in a true restoration. I think the trunk will be more valuable if it is as much like it was when new, as possible.

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