[Table of Contents] [Search]


[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [BKARTS] cleaning brushes



It depends on what material the brush handle is made of. If it's plastic, the plastic won't swell as wood will. If it's wood, the wood will absorb the water and eventually split the ferrule and you will lose the bristles later if not sooner. If it's a cheap brush some people might not care. I prefer not replacing brushes unless absolutely necessary.

Also: Most ferrules are steel and if not stainless, will rust. Some ferrules might be aluminum - don't know for sure. Some are plastic. Some brushes have the bristles tied on. They're all different with long exposure to water.

I don't leave my brushes in water any longer than it takes to reasonably clean them, which means I wash the brush in warm soapy water as soon as I'm finished with it - 99% of the time (the other 1% of the time I'm cursing my absentmindedness ; )). It's good policy to have an extra glue brush on hand to use on long jobs in case the one gets kind of stiff with glue. Then I soak it until I'm finished with that next step, and wash them both out at the same time. Brushes are best stored flat, in a dry place, or if they are bristle brushes, it's probably ok to store them with their bristles up, but if you do that, make sure you wash the dustbunnies out before you put any glue or paint or anything on them! I keep half my brushes (the ones I less frequently use) in one of those flat metal boxes with the wire coils that they stick into, and the other half in a bamboo placemat that I wove in and out with two 1/4" bands of elastic. The brushes go thru the pairs of elastic loops and the whole thing rolls up and ties. I make sure the bristles aren't showing above the edge of the roll. Keeps the bristles straight and in good shape. It's an old art student's trick from years back.

As you can see, I'm kind of a brush nut, since I also do watercolors, and good W/C brushes are usually pretty expensive hence my obsessing about their care.....

Kathy G


On Feb 13, 2007, at 10:19 PM, Pickafight Books wrote:


I have a question for you out there...

I was told by an instructor that she leaves her brushes soaking almost
permanently in water she changes regularly.

One advantage is never having to clean a stiffened dry brush but what
adverse effects are there on the brush? Is this a horrifically bad thing to
do? It sounds sensible in one respect but completely silly in another. I'm
not sure what rot or mould develops. I definitely want my brush sitting at
the bottom of my shower cubicle with the mould which is a constant battle in
the hot climate of Sydney summer...


Cheers,


Andrew Williams Pickafight Books Stanmore NSW Australia

-----Original Message-----
From: Book_Arts-L [mailto:BOOK_ARTS-L@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of
Susan Lunas
Sent: Wednesday, 14 February 2007 03:30
To: BOOK_ARTS-L@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [BKARTS] cleaning brushes


Hi, Peter,
A while back I learned a trick to clean out dried PVA from brushes that
works almost all of the time. Simply place the bristles in paste ( the
consistency of pudding or drier). Check the bristles every day or so to
see if the PVA has softened-- and it will though it takes several days.
As the PVA softens, you can wash/rub it out. Return the brush to the
paste fand repeat the cycle until the brush is clean. This has worked
well for me on at least one brush where the dried PVA was several years old.


Susie Lunas
Many Moons Book Conservation
Eugene, Oregon

             ***********************************************
         The Bonefolder, Vol. 3, No. 1, Fall 2006 Now Online at
                 <http://www.philobiblon.com/bonefolder>

Guild of Book Workers' 100th Anniversary Exhibition Online - Catalog Available
<http://palimpsest.stanford.edu/byorg/gbw/gallery/100anniversary/>


             For all your subscription questions, go to the
                      Book_Arts-L FAQ and Archive.
          See <http://www.philobiblon.com> for full information
             ***********************************************

Every Day Is a New Beginning


"The friendships we develop determine the quality of our own souls" Joan Chittister, OSB

***********************************************
The Bonefolder, Vol. 3, No. 1, Fall 2006 Now Online at
<http://www.philobiblon.com/bonefolder>
Guild of Book Workers' 100th Anniversary Exhibition Online - Catalog Available
<http://palimpsest.stanford.edu/byorg/gbw/gallery/100anniversary/>
For all your subscription questions, go to the
Book_Arts-L FAQ and Archive.
See <http://www.philobiblon.com> for full information
***********************************************



[Subject index] [Index for current month] [Table of Contents] [Search]