Contents

Series editors' preface

xix

Functional types

13

Contributors

xxi

Design and construction Materials used

14 16

Acknowledgements

xxv

Trade practice, tools and

Illustration acknowledgements

Surface decoration and

16

finish

1B

PART 1

HISTORY

1.4.3 1700-1800

20

Background

20

1 Furniture history

3

Functional types Design and construction

20 21

1.1

Introduction

3

Materials used

23

1.2

Earliest times to the Middle Ages 3

Tools and techniques of

1.2.1 Egypt

3

conversion and

1.2.2 Greece

4

construction

24

1.2.3 Rome

5

Surface decoration and

1.2.4 Byzantium and the

finish

25

Romanesque period

5

Organization of trades

26

1.3

Medieval

6

1.5

The nineteenth century

26

Background

6

Background

26

Functional types

6

Functional types

2B

Design and construction

7

Style and type of

Materials used

B

construction

29

Tools and techniques

B

Materials used

30

Surface decoration and finish

B

Tools and techniques

31

Organization of the trade

9

Surface decoration and

1.4

Renaissance to Industrial Revolution

Organization of trades

33

1.4.1 1500-1600

9

and manufacturing

34

Background

9

1.6

The twentieth century

35

Functional types

9

Context

35

Design and construction

10

Materials used

37

Materials used

11

Tools and techniques of

Tools and techniques

11

conversion and

Surface decoration and

construction

40

finish

11

Surface decoration and

Organization of the trade

12

finish

40

1.4.2 1600-1700

12

Organization of trades

Background

12

and manufacturing

Bibliography 41

PART 2 MATERIALS

2 Wood and wooden structures 49

  1. 1 Introduction to wood as material 49
  2. 2 The nature of wood:

appearance, cellular structure and identification 51

  1. 2.1 Gross features 51 Grain 52 Texture 53 Figure 53 Colour 54 Taxonomy - the classification of plants 54
  2. 2.2 Wood anatomy: softwoods 55
  3. 2.3 Cell structure: hardwoods 57
  4. 2.4 Wood identification 60
  5. 2.5 Hand-lens examination 61
  6. 2.6 Microscopic examination 70
  7. 2.7 Other methods 74
  8. 3 Chemical nature of wood 74
  9. 3.1 Chemical constituents of wood 74
  10. 3.2 The cellulose structure within cell walls 75
  11. 4 Wood-water relations and movement 76
  12. 4.1 Hygroscopicity 77
  13. 4.2 Measuring moisture content of wood 77
  14. 4.3 Dimensional change 79
  15. 4.4 Estimating dimensional change 80
  16. 5 Mechanical properties 83
  17. 5.1 Defining mechanical properties 83
  18. 5.2 Relative strength properties 85
  19. 5.3 Factors affecting the strength of wood 85
  20. 5.4 Role of wood strength in furniture 86
  21. 6 Manufactured timber products 87
  22. 6.1 Veneers 87
  23. 6.2 Plywood and related materials 88
  24. 6.3 Reconstituted wood products 89
  25. 7 Wooden structures 89
  26. 7.1 Types of joints 89
  27. 7.2 Critical success factors for joints 90
  28. 7.3 Dovetail joints 91
  29. 7.4 Mortise and tenon joints 92
  30. 7.5 Other joint types 93 Bibliography 95

3 Upholstery materials and structures 97

  1. 1 Introduction to upholstery 97
  2. 1.1 Classification and terminology 97
  3. 1.2 Historical development 98
  4. 1.3 Technical examination 100
  5. 2 Top surface/simple structures 100
  6. 2.1 Leather/skin/parchment 100 Skin 100 Leather 101 Structure processing and properties 102 Methods of working and uses of leather 102

Parchment 104

Skins 'in the hair' 104

Shark and ray skin 104 Identification of leather and skin products 105

  1. 2.2 Simple structures -interworked materials (including rush and cane) 105 Cordage 105 Rush 106 Wicker 106 Rattan or cane 106 Reed 107 Splints 107
  2. 2.3 Textiles 107 Fibres 108 Dyes and dyeing 109 Textile structures 109 Surface decoration and finishing 110 Identification of textiles and fibres 111
  3. 2.4 Synthetic polymers and plastics 112 Polystyrene 112 Polyester urethane and polyether urethane 112 Rubber 112 Identification of polymer systems 113
  4. 2.5 Coated fabrics and 'leather cloths' 113 Oil cloths 113 Rubber cloths 113 Cellulose nitrate 113 Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) 113
  5. 2.6 Trimmings 113
  6. 3 Hardware 114
  7. 4 Under structures 115 3.4.1 Fillings 116

Animal materials 116

Vegetable materials 118 Elastomers, synthetic materials and latex 118

  1. 5 Support systems 119
  2. 5.1 Webbing 119
  3. 5.2 Springs 120
  4. 5.3 Fabrics and twines used as part of the structure 120
  5. 6 Adhesives 120 Bibliography 121

4 Plastics and polymers, coatings and binding media, adhesives and consolidants 124

  1. 1 Plastics and polymers 124
  2. 1.1 Chemical structure 124
  3. 1.2 Physical properties 126
  4. 1.3 Polymer materials history and technology 128
  5. 1.4 Identification of plastics and polymers 134
  6. 2 Introduction to coatings, binding media, adhesives and consolidants 134
  7. 3 Coatings - functions and properties 135
  8. 3.1 Protection against handling and soiling 136
  9. 3.2 Strength and elasticity 136
  10. 3.3 Barrier properties 137
  11. 3.4 Optical properties 138
  12. 3.5 Solubility and working properties 140
  13. 4 Coatings - structures and preparations 141
  14. 4.1 Supports 142 Stoppings 142 Grain fillers 142
  15. 4.2 Grounds 142 Gesso grounds 142 Bole 143 Composition 144
  16. 4.3 Paints and paint media 144
  17. 4.4 Transparent coatings 146 Historical use of varnishes 147
  18. 4.5 Gilding 148
  19. 4.6 Oriental lacquer (urushi) 149 Preparing the lacquer 149 Refining raw lacquer 150 Making a cured film 150 Applying lacquer to substrate 151 Decoration 152 Identification 152
  20. 4.7 Japanning 153
  21. 5 Adhesives 156

Glue line thickness, adhesive failure 158

Starved joints 159

Roughening surfaces 159

4.5.1 Factors governing the choice of an adhesive 159

Health and safety 160 Characteristics of cured adhesive 160

Relativity of choice factors 160

  1. 5.2 Adhesives used in woodworking 160
  2. 5.3 Hot melt adhesives 161
  3. 5.4 Contact cements 161
  4. 6 Consolidants 161
  5. 7 Review of materials: coatings, media, adhesives and consolidants 162
  6. 7.1 Oils and fats 162
  7. 7.2 Waxes 165 Animal waxes 166 Plant waxes 166 Mineral waxes 166 Commercial products 167
  8. 7.3 Carbohydrates: sugars and polysaccharides 167 Alginates 167
  9. 7.4 Proteins 169 Collagen 169 Albumins 173 Casein and milk 173
  10. 7.5 Natural resins and lacquers 174 Shellac 174
  11. 7.6 Synthetic materials 179 Thermoplastics 179 Poly(vinyl acetate) PVAC 179 Poly(vinyl alcohol) 180 Poly(vinyl acetals) 180 Acrylics 180

Cyclohexanone resins

181

5.8.1 Colour

219

Cellulose nitrates

182

Why objects appear

Other thermoplastic

coloured

219

materials

183

5.8.2 Pigments

221

Thermosetting resins

184

Chemical properties

221

Alkyds

185

Physical properties

222

Epoxies

185

5.8.3 Dyes

230

4.8

Examination and identification of

5.8.4 Stains

230

adhesives, coatings and media

187

5.8.5 Identification of pigments,

Bibliography

189

dyes and stains

232

Bibliography

233

Other materials and structures

194

5.1

Ivory, ivory-like teeth, bone and

antler

194

PART 3

DETERIORATION

Ivory 194

Bone and antler

197

6 General review of environment

Ivory substitutes

197

and deterioration

241

Identification of ivory,

6.1

Introduction

241

bone and antler

199

6.1.1 Organizational and political

5.2

Keratinaceous materials - horn

context

241

and turtleshell

201

6.1.2 Use versus preservation

242

General information

201

Change and damage

242

Turtleshell

201

6.1.3 Managing the object life

Horn

202

cycle

243

Properties

202

6.2

The environment

244

Identification

203

6.2.1 Background chemistry

244

5.3

Mollusc shell

204

6.2.2 Light

246

5.4

Paper and paper products Identification of paper

205

Light energy, colour temperature and damage

247

and paper products

206

Reciprocity

248

5.5

Metals

206

Control of light

248

Iron and steel

208

Lighting and heating

251

Copper alloys

209

6.2.3 Heat

252

Common white metals

210

Measurement and control

Gold leaf

210

of temperature

252

Shell and powdered gold

211

6.2.4 Absolute humidity and

Finishes and coatings on

relative humidity

253

metals

211

Measuring RH

254

Identification of metals

212

RH and damage

256

Identification of structure

Control of RH

257

and fabrication of metal

6.2.5 Pollution

260

objects

212

Particulate pollution

260

Dating metals

213

Gaseous pollution

263

5.6

Ceramics and glass

213

6.2.6 Biological agents

266

Flat glass

214

Fungi

266

Identification of glass

Insects

267

and ceramics

217

6.2.7 Mechanical handling,

5.7

Stone and related materials

217

packing and moving

273

Marble

217

Touch

273

Identification of stone and

Clothing

274

related materials

218

Forces applied to objects

5.8

Colorants: pigments, dyes and

(lifting, moving and

stains

219

placing)

Protection of objects 276

Damage 276

6.2.8 Environmental management for preventive conservation277

Stores and storage 277

  1. 3 Disaster preparation 279
  2. 3.1 Disaster planning 279 Prevention 279 Preparation 280
  3. 3.2 When a disaster occurs 281
  4. 3.3 After a disaster 282 Bibliography 282
7 Deterioration of wood and

den structures

285

8 Deterioration of other materials

Deterioration of wood as

and structures

material

285

8.1

Ivory, ivory-like teeth, bone and

7.1

.1 Natural defects in wood in

antler, horn and turtleshell

living trees

285

8.2

Mollusc shell - mother-of-pearl

7.1

.2 Artificial defects -

and related materials

conversion and seasoning

288

8.3

Paper and paper products

Conversion

289

8.4

Metals

Seasoning defects

289

Role of moisture

7.1

.3 Deterioration of 'normal'

Chlorides

seasoned wood

290

Light

Light

290

Heat

Heat

291

Pollutants

Moisture

292

Mechanical damage

Pollution

294

8.5

Ceramics and glass

Fungi

294

8.6

Stone and related materials

Insects

296

8.7

Colorants - pigments, dyes and

Mechanical deterioration

stains

of wood

301

8.8

Plastics and polymers

Deterioration of wooden

Environmental stress

structures - causes

302

cracking and crazing

  1. 2.1 General - dimensional response of wooden structures 302
  2. 2.2 Faulty construction and conservation 303 Design faults 303 Faults in execution of the design 305 Poor quality materials used 306

Inappropriate use of material 306

Role of fashion and technical innovation 306 Conservation treatment errors 306

  1. 3 Deterioration of wooden structures - consequences 307
  2. 3.1 Broken and damaged parts and losses 307
  3. 3.2 Loose and lifting veneer 307
  4. 3.3 Loose and broken joints 308
  5. 3.4 Shrinkage, splitting and warping 308
  6. 3.5 Accretions and other surface disfigurement 310
  7. 3.6 Review of damage by structure 310 Carcase furniture 311 Tables 312

Bibliography 313

317 317 321 322 322 322 322 323

Oxidation 327

The effect of light on polymers 328

The effect of heat on polymers 329

The effect of RH on polymers 329

The effect of pollution on polymers 329

Biological damage to polymers 330

Prevention and care 330 8.9 Coatings - deterioration of some common systems of surface decoration 331

  1. 9.1 The support 332
  2. 9.2 The ground 333
  3. 9.3 The paint 335
  4. 9.4 Transparent top coatings

- varnishes 337 Development of insoluble matter 339

  1. 9.5 Gilding 340
  2. 9.6 Oriental lacquer 342
  3. 9.7 Japanning 343
  4. 10 Adhesives 345
  5. 11 Deterioration of specific materials 345
  6. 11.1 Oils and fats 345
  7. 11.2 Waxes 346
  8. 11.3 Carbohydrates: sugars and polysaccharides 346
  9. 11.4 Proteins 346
  10. 11.5 Natural resins and lacquers 346
  11. 11.6 Synthetic materials 348
  12. 12 Deterioration of upholstery materials and structures 348

Prevention conservation 348

8.12.1 Top surface/simple structures 348 Leather, skin and parchment 348

Rush, reed and cane 349

Textiles 350

Chemical degradation 351

Biodeterioration 352

Structure of textiles 353

Dyes and finishes 353 Preventive conservation of textiles 354

Plastics 354

Rubber 355

Polyurethanes 356

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) 357

Cellulose nitrate 358

Trimmings 358

Understructures 359

Hardware 359

Bibliography 360

PART 4 CONSERVATION

9 Conservation preliminaries 367

  1. 1 Context 367
  2. 1.1 Historical background 367
  3. 1.2 Definition of the profession 368
  4. 1.3 Professional organizations 369
  5. 1.4 The business of conservation 370
  6. 2 Ethics 370
  7. 2.1 Codes of ethics and practice 370
  8. 2.2 Historical conflict between restoration and preservation 371
  9. 2.3 Conservation as a cultural discipline 372
  10. 2.4 Tools for balanced ethical judgement 374 The V&A ethics checklist 375
  11. 3 Examination 380
  12. 3.1 Purpose of examination 380
  13. 3.2 What to look for 381 Structural damage 383 Surface effects 383
  14. 3.3 Methods of examination 384 General aspects of characterization 385 Estimating 386 Gross examination 386 Simple mechanical tests 388 Microscopic examination 390 Sampling 391 General aspects of analytical methods 393 Dating methods 394
  15. 4 Documentation 396
  16. 4.1 What is documentation and why is it important? 396
  17. 4.2 Information needs 396
  18. 4.3 Documentation methods 398
  19. 4.4 Setting up a documentation system 400
  20. 4.5 Photography 401 The film 402 The light source 402 Alternative light sources 405 The camera 406
  21. 5 Studio organization and layout 407
  22. 5.1 Workshop processes and procedures 408 Examination and recording of condition 408

Dismantling the object 408 Repair of existing components and making of new ones 408

Re-assembly 408

Finishing and colouring 408

Recording and reporting

Step 5: Review your

treatment

409

assessment

427

9.5.2 The location

409

9.7.5

Control risk

427

9.5.3 The building/space

409

The hierarchy of control

428

Entrance/loading bay

410

The life cycle of control

428

Client reception and

9.7.6

Maintain controls

428

administration area

410

9.7.7

Monitor exposure

429

Object storage

410

9.7.8

Survey health

429

Examination and

9.7.9

Inspect the workplace

429

photography

411

Checklist for health and

The main work area

411

safety review

430

Machine room

411

9.7.10

Inform, instruct and train

430

Retouching area/clean

Shared workplace and

room

412

visiting workers

430

The wood store

412

Duties of employees

430

Upholstery workshop

412

Labelling and signage

430

Metalworking area

413

9.7.11

Audit

430

Recreational areas

414

9.7.12

Accidents and

9.5.4 Detailed requirements

414

emergencies

430

Storage

414

Fire prevention

431

Wet areas

415

Fire precautions

431

Electrical power supply

415

9.7.13

Further information on

Lighting and heating

415

health and safety

431

Extraction

416

Bibliography

432

Tools and equipment

417

9.6.1 Woodworking tools and

10 Principles of conserving and

equipment

417

repairing wooden furniture

436

9.6.2 Other tools and

10.1

General principles

437

equipment

418

10.1.1

Diagnosing the cause of

Health and safety

420

failure

437

9.7.1 Health and safety

10.1.2

Selection of repair method

requirements

421

and repair material

438

Principal legal

10.1.3

Selection of wood for a

requirements

421

repair

438

What you should know

10.1.4

Transferring shapes, profiles

about health and safety

and measurements

439

law

421

10.1.5

Making the repair piece

439

9.7.2 The process of managing

10.1.6

Fitting the repair to the

health and safety

422

object

439

9.7.3 Documentation for health

10.1.7

Adhesion and surface

and safety management

422

preparation

440

9.7.4 Risk assessment

423

10.1.8

Selecting an adhesive

442

Generic assessments

424

10.1.9

Assembly

444

Five steps to risk

10.1.10 Cramping/clamping

444

assessment

424

10.1.11 Levelling repairs

448

Step 1: Look for the

10.1.12 Preparation of repair for

hazards

424

finishing

449

Step 2:Decide who or

10.2

General techniques

454

what might be harmed

10.2.1

Dismantling furniture

454

and how

426

10.2.2

Cleaning joints after

Step 3:Evaluate the risks

426

dismantling

458

Step 4: Record your

10.2.3

Repairs after insect

findings

427

infestation

458

  1. 2.4 Reinforcing joints
  2. 2.5 Frames

Handling mirror frames

  1. 3 Repair by damage type
  2. 3.1 Loose and broken joints
  3. 3.2 Shrinkage checks and splits
  4. 3.3 Hinges
  5. 3.4 Warping
  6. 3.5 Breaks and losses
  7. 3.6 Faulty construction
  8. 4 Veneer, marquetry and boulle
  9. 4.1 Laying veneer
  10. 4.2 Cleaning
  11. 4.3 Consolidation
  12. 4.4 Transferring the outline of a loss
  13. 4.5 Replacing losses
  14. 4.6 Lifting original veneer
  15. 4.7 Coatings for boulle work
  16. 4.8 Stringing and metal inlay
  17. 5 Moulding and casting
  18. 5.1 General procedure
  19. 5.2 Selection of materials
  20. 5.3 Release agents
  21. 5.4 Making a mould
  22. 5.5 Colorants and fillers
  23. 5.6 Finishing
  24. 5.7 Gilders composition Ingredients Mixing

Bibliography

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