Saturday, June 27, 2009

Soaking the Unsoakable

Going through some old American Philatelist magazines, I came across an interesting letter to the editor.

The writer lamented about how recent U.S. commemoratives were almost impossible to soak off in any sort of respectable condition and offered an alternative.

It's called Bestine.

According to the company's Web site, "Formulated for thinning rubber cement, Bestine is also a most versatile cleaner. Bestine readily cleans up inks, spray adhesive, and is an exceptional parts cleaner. Over the years, professionals have used Bestine for removing both decals and labels from all types of surfaces. But, most important, Bestine does not dissolve most plastics. It is available in 4, 16, and 32 oz.: 1, 5, and 55 gallon containers."

Instead of soaking the stamp in the tradition way, you brush the liquid on the back of the paper the stamp is affixed to. Wait several seconds and amazingly the stamp will lift off easily. I know I tryed it and it works great.

However, there is one slight problem. The stamp will still be somewhat sticky when it is removed. However, a little baby or talcum powder sprinkled on the back of it will neutralize the stickiness and it will be ready for your album.

WARNING: This product should be used with care. It should not be used by unsupervised children. It is EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE. It is also harmful or FATAL if swallowed.

However, that being said so is lighter fluid for watermark detection.

Bestine can usually be found with the rubber cement in art supply stores.

To locate a store near you that carries Bestine or to order in bulk from the company that makes it, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM