One of the original features in my place is a series of servants' bells in the
main room that sound in the
kitchen. Naturally not a feature that impresses SWMBO, and they've never worked
in the sense that the
bell might sound but it never seems to result in a fresh beer ;-(
Anyway...the pushes are (very old) bakelite, by the look of it and they're
covered in geological layers of
emulsion paint, which could do with stripping off, especially as one has been
hanging loose since the
living room was replastered, so needs to be opened and screwed back onto the
I'm sort of resigned to this being a matter of some very careful scraping (which
could be a long job), so I
thought I'd see if anyone had any bright ideas for getting this off more easily
and less (potentially)
Any suggestions chaps? (Which includes chapesses, naturally!)
Soak them for a day in soapy water to soften the emulsion.
You can polish them to restore the surface with brasso of better,
Caution using chemicals as bakelite is a resin based solid and may be
unstable with age.
On Tuesday, October 16, 2012 11:06:23 PM UTC+1, Andrew Gabriel wrote:
So I'd better not put it in the dishwasher then :-)
I'm getting the general impression that scraping is going to be the way to go!
Of course, I'm only assuming it's bakelite: It's not metallic, wooden, ceramic
etc but I suppose it could
be some even more ancient precursor of bakelite. Of course, that's likely to b
even more fragile...
On Tuesday, October 16, 2012 11:38:19 PM UTC+1, GMM wrote:
No no no. Just soak the paint for a day, and it should wipe off. You don't want to scratch the bakelite up, then have to repolish it all.
Bakelite's plastic precursors saw relatively little use, so its unlikely.
Bakelite has one big vulnerability though: it often breaks very easily indeed. Be most cautious when it comes to screwing it back in place, don't even begin to tighten the screws beyond the point where the bakelite stops moving freely. If you can safely soak it in situ I would, perhaps with cloth wraps and clingfilm.
On Wednesday, October 17, 2012 8:42:48 PM UTC+1, (unknown) wrote:
But soak it with what - water? If that worked (and the deeper coats may well be good old-fashioned emulsion rather than vinyl) I'd be very happy to make it easier.
Has to be in situ as I can't disconnect until I can unscrew it!
On Wednesday, October 17, 2012 8:50:11 PM UTC+1, GMM wrote:
be good old-fashioned emulsion rather than vinyl) I'd be very happy to make it
easier.> Has to be in situ as I can't disconnect until I can unscrew it!
I used water with a little ecover, and the emulsion all wiped off
On Tuesday, 16 October 2012 20:23:08 UTC+1, GMM wrote:
Usually the best way. Arm yourself with the right scraper first, of something
strong enough to go through the paint, but not steel as it will scratch the
Bakelite. Mine is made of Perspex offcuts with a sharp edge.
Bakelite will also refinish quite nicely if you use a 3M or Webrax abrasive
scourer pad, then polish it with GPO original Paste, Polishing No 5. Autosol
chrome polish is an OK substitute.
I have generally found that Swarfega is pretty effective at softening
emulsion paint enough to come off easily with light pressure and a sharp
plastic tool. No idea if Bakelite will tolerate it though.
Leave for a few hours and then when the paint film is soft it will come
off pretty easily - sometimes a fingernail is good enough.
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