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Re: non-toxic lacquer thinner substitute



Hi Julie,
The latest issue of Graphic Impressions, the newsletter of the Southern
Graphics Council reprints an article that first appeared in the Journal of
the Mid America Print Council Artists' Healthwatch by Michael Hathaway and
Kathryn Reeves about oil of wintergreen (methyl salicylate). Kathryn
teaches prints at Purdue. It's not definitive, but it confirms some of my
suspicions about wintergreen. You might try getting an MSDS sheet about the
oil from your supplier. I personally don't like wintergreen because the
smell stays around for so long, on everything, and I've seen it leave
stains in some papers.

By the way, some people have begun using oil of lavender instead of
wintergreen. I've heard that it's actually more dangerous than wintergreen,
but don't have any sources. Acetone is a chemically simple compound that is
miscible with water and relatively safe to use with adequate ventilation
or, like anything else, prolonged exposure. I also know that some people
use transparent base, oil-base type, from screenprinting for transfers,
though I've never tried it. Since it's in a gel form, it doesn't evaporate
as fast as the solvents do.

The SGC website is http://www.utc.edu/~utcsgc/ but it doesn't have the
newsletter posted. You might write to the newsletter editor, Beauvais
Lyons, for a copy at blyons@utkux.utcc.utk.edu.

John Risseeuw

>John,
>
>do you happen to know where I can get this information about the dangers of
>wintergreen oil? My students have been using it for a while, and id does tend
>to make people feel ill. I had no idea it was on par with acetone though. I
>would love to get more information on this issue. Thanks.
>
>Julie Chen
>Mills College
>
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