My eyes are gone for any detail work for this evening as I have been working in my garden all day and I have a problem if I am exposed to bright sunlight for long periods.
Being reduced to watching Jurassic Park 3 is making me loose the will to live and as the family have voted that I must not play any more Wagner at the volume that I like to play it I thought people might be interested in something I was asked to have a go at for Felixtowe museum.
We have a local men’s shed group which I am nominally a member of and they use a room in the old fort which used to be part of the mine laying setup as a work shop. It’s part of the museum but basically only used as a store room for English Heritage stuff.
We get to use it on the understanding that we repair things for them when they break etc.
They have lots of “stuff” and dragged this out which probably hadn't been cleaned since the 1950s and really hadn’t been looked after.
Really nice model, very well made but with a few cracks and a lot of the hide glue joints parted. I suspect someone had tried cleaning it with vinegar.
Yes vinegar is brilliant for cleaning old furniture, but it is also very good at crystallising hide glue (if you ever want to break a joint down). In this case with a model with little bitty joints - you clean it, you pick it up - and bingo - you have a newly part formed construction kit held together (only) with very small clenched pins.
The thing had been so well made putting it back to rights and making good the joints only took about 12 hours and wasn’t really a problem.
I wish I had taken pictures before I started but people might like to see what it looked like cleaned up when I finished.
I would really like to have met the chap that made it. It’s not actually a model, it’s a miniature, made just as the full size boat would have been made - apart from the hide glue - which I replaced, with hide glue.
I like the stuff for this sort of thing, if anything goes wrong or breaks you can clean it up and replace it literally without being able to see the repair. Most modern glues you cannot shift and they are a bugger to get of without leaving marks.