Gaffer tape!!!!!

Conservation Issues

Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby stcstc » Mon Jul 05, 2010 7:18 pm

ok so today a client brings in an original watercolour framed etc

says she wants to reframe doesnt like the frame

so on first glance i see the mount has brown edges, i guess from cream core board etc

then i notice the actual print has slipped at one end away from the mount and can clearly see gaffer tape which has been used to stick the image to the window mount

so i talk the client into re mounting first to see what it looks like then change the frame if she wants later

so anyway having taken the thing out of the frame i find no barrier board in the back and the print is stuck on 3 sides with gaffertape to the window mount and has mdf in the back.

anyway my question is

am i best just cutting away the worst of the gaffer tape, and leaving some where its stuckk welll to the paper, or trying to remove

the client tells me she didnt spend a huge ammount on the piece but there again i dont want to do any damage either

she told me the artist framed it themselves.


Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby prospero » Mon Jul 05, 2010 7:29 pm

Don't try and remove the tape, unless it drops off on it's own accord. That's a job for a restorer and you could make things worse. Just trim the excess tape and frame as is. That is the condition in which it was presented to you.
Hinging could be a problem if you have to stick hinges over the taped area at the top. Maybe Melinex strips would be better.
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Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby Roboframer » Mon Jul 05, 2010 9:41 pm

Even if you could remove the tape cleanly, possibly with the aid of a heat gun. there would still be a residue left from the adhesive which would take solvents to remove completely and all that equals time which eqauls money the customer won't want to spend by the sound of it.

I'd trim the excess tape and hinge it in the normal way but I'd rough up the surface of the tape left on the paper with fine sandpaper to give it some 'tooth' for the hinges, be they pressure sensitive or wet paste.

Did you know that gaffer tape comes in 'Nuclear Grade :shock:

Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby stcstc » Tue Jul 06, 2010 1:33 pm

thanks guys

i thought something similar, i was just unsure about leaving the tape as over time i guess its gonna do damage too

the sand paper is a handy little tip hadnt thought of that thanks

Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby absolute framing » Sun Jul 11, 2010 11:10 pm


I'de do the same and just trim the tape, then mount using see through mounting srrips ... ,7966.aspx
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Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby stcstc » Sun Jul 11, 2010 11:36 pm

would you believe when i got it out of the frame properly the gaffer tape had dried and just came of the back of the piece without any real effort

the client was so happy, she gave me 6 more pieces to frame, wohooo

thanks for the advise anyway

Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby Dermot » Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:46 pm

It might be worth seeing if Heptane will remove the adhesive tape.

I have it if you want to try.

Heptane is one of the solvents conservators use to remove adhesive tape from paper based items such as art and books.

Re: Gaffer tape!!!!!

Postby stcstc » Tue Jul 13, 2010 6:05 pm

thanks dermot

the tape came off the first one without any real effort

i have the next one in the workshop now so will look and let you know if i need to try it thanks

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