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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 12:02 pm 
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Grand Master Hunter
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Okay this is really random for a Wow pets forum I know, but I figured what the heck :lol:
I recently inherited a lot of WW1 and WW2 items along with my sister. She said she wanted to help me find out how to preserve and store everything properly, but that was months ago and being disabled it's kind of hard to do it all by myself. I've done a little research, but I was just curious if anyone on here may have some suggestions or knowledge they could share as I'm still feeling a bit lost.


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Unread postPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:46 pm 
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Apprentice Hunter
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Hey

I myself is a https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conservator-restorer student though my field is focused on natural history, so I know more about dissecting animals, making skeletons, tanning, making fake copies ergh replicas, restoring and so on so forth of naturalhistory objects.

A general thing you can do is to make sure your items is always at a constant level of humidity, 50 % RH (relative humidity) in avarage. Note there's exception to this such as metals can and mostly should be kept at very lo w percentages whereas wood is flexible and too low humidity would cause drying and warping just as too high, above 60% RH will allow the posibility of harmful and degrading microorganisms (bacteria, fungus etc.) to grow on it and destroys the item. Mold is very hazadrous!
A way to maintain RH could be the use of silica gel, normal people know it from the small bags in clothes and shoes. These pearls depending on brand and composition can be programmed to maintain a specific %RH amount in a closed or very low airflow container. Kinda logical that they are useless in an open room mostly as you would need massive amounts just for a big size glas case.
Temperatures can be a trigger factor as well, especially alongside RH, and here we're talking mainly higer temperatures. Low temps are generally good unless we're talking buildings with murals and such then you have other issues, but that's not my speciality!

The best way to store atifacts is to store them in acid free closed carton boxes in a always levelled enviroment of low temperature, with a constant RH and no sunlight to prevent decomposition of the items all year. If that's not achieveable aim for a room which always stays close the same in temp and airflow/RH wise during summer and/or winter. It's ok to have natural swings in humidity and temperature, just not swings going from eg. 5 degrees celcius to 25 degrees every other day. it will ruin the items in a lot of various ways depending on the materials.

Or to have a closed enviroment with very low airflow as a museum glass cabinet/box which is not placed in direct sunlight. UV really ruins everything, just think of plastic in sunlight! Museums have special UV filters, lights and films available and even so you can't avoid everything and you have to swap these items out occasionally.

That's what you can start by doing to you stuff. After that I honestly reccomend seeking the advice of a professional conservator/restorer with expertise in the historical/cultural/archeological field who knows how to handle fabric, wood and metal and is capable of assessing the state of the items and which precautions needs to be taken in order to keep the longevetity of the items at its best. Remember nothing last forever even with drastic measures and everything you do in order to preserve an item may have an undesired effect like darkening in order to keep it stabil for a longer period.

But a good start is a stable enviroment and containers with a 50% RH and a steady temp and very little sunlight until you get a hold of a person who works in the cultural field.

Hope it helps a bit!=)

for further info, these are very dry books but they focus on cultural items mainly and they are uni books used for conservators around the world, https://www.amazon.co.uk/Preventive-Conservation-Museums-Leicester-Readers/dp/0415579708 and https://www.amazon.com/Museum-Environment-Butterworth-Heinemann-Conservation-Museology/dp/0750620412


For some shameless self-promo of what I do at uni and this was done as an actual restoration job/practice project for the Danish Zoological Museum in Copenhagen.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:02 pm 
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Grand Master Hunter
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Thanks so much for that. It helps a lot.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:50 am 
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Apprentice Hunter
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Bulletdance wrote:
Thanks so much for that. It helps a lot.


Yw!=) Glad I could be of some assistance even though I wish I had been more helpful but yeah my branch is rocks, dead animals, bones, fossils and the like so I only know very little about the other fields from combined lessons across the 5 various classes at my school.
But yeah try and get a hold of a pro, they have much more experience and knowledge and sometimes they have easy somewhat unconventional ways to fix things and how to keep them which works just as great as the more complicated theories! =) I can also reveal that not all museums are capable of maintaining all the fancy requirements and they are still capable of keeping huge collections safe for visitors and scientists! =)
I wish you good luck with your WW I/II collection! =)


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