Help me identify this soft ceiling material and tell me what to do with it, please.

I am trying to refurbish a house built in 1959. In one room there is a soft ceiling tile. According to the original owner, it was installed in 1959 by tacking the tiles to furring strips that were in turn attached directly to the ceiling deck. The original owner also said it was chosen by her and the builder for sound dampening in what was to become the family room. We are thinking about painting these tiles and need to know if this is feasable, and if it is then how to best prepare the surface. I am thinking that there must be some sort of sealer that I could use.
So in short, I am hoping that some of you can make some guesses as to what sort of ceiling tile I am dealing with and then offer suggestions on painting it.
Thank you in advance.
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Probably a pressed fiber material, If no water stains just paint it, spraying is best. it will loose its sound absortive qualities.
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A friend of mine had those tiles in her store and decided to paint them. I wasn't there to see exactly what happened, but after she painted it the ceiling fell down. She wound up installing a drywall ceiling in its place.
She misses the sound dampening effect that those tiles had.

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How soft is soft? The old Celotex tiles were a pressed paper like material; softer that wood, harder than foam padding. You could paint them with latex ceiling paint. My in-law had them in their house about the same time.
I've seen some that were more for dropped ceilings that had a fiberglass backing also. Ed
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It sounds like Armstrong Ceiling Tiles. Go to their website and see if it matches (they have pictures). If it is, they can be painted, I have done it. In my wife's house, they were in the kitchen and had a big stain due to a leak above.
Be careful you don't damage them as you can't get replacements. After the leak was repaired I went to buy replacements and found that the pattern had been discontinued and Armstrong told me that I would have to install an entire new ceiling! Needless to say, I was not about to install a new ceiling because of about ten square feet of stained tiles. So I experimented and found that BIN matched the white color of the tiles perfectly. Problem solved. Just make sure the paint is thin so as not to fill up the depressions.
Hope this helps, Jim
On Thu, 04 Dec 2003 14:42:09 -0000, James Bond

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