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History, Conservation, and Repair The history of photographic prints, and how best to care for and repair them.

Double sided tape on old photos

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  #1  
Old 10-15-2006, 03:14 PM
dak511 dak511 is offline
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Double sided tape on old photos

Hi,
I have several old 1968 photos that I put on non acid free paper and want to scrapbook them. The problem is I put them on using double-sided tape on the back. When I try to take the tape off, a little of the back of the photo comes with it. I've tried to use Un-do it and it still takes a little of the back off. Is it better to leave the tape on or doesn't the tape hurt the photo.

Thank you,
Linda
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Old 10-15-2006, 03:33 PM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

Maybe try warming them a bit with a hairdryer first?
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Old 10-15-2006, 04:11 PM
dak511 dak511 is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

I tried the hairdryer trick and still some of the back paper comes off. I even tried putting it in the microwave and that didn't work. It's always a very thin layer so I'm just hoping that it won't harm the photo. What harm will it do to the photo if the first layer comes off the back. It is only the part where the double-sided tape was on.

Thanks
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Old 10-15-2006, 04:52 PM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

Another frequently-mentioned technique is freezing (try first with one you don't care for, and use a ziplock bag).

The tape will eventually harm the photo, but I don't know which is worse (it depends on how much comes off, I guess.
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Old 10-15-2006, 04:57 PM
dak511 dak511 is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

Thanks, I appreciate your help. I would try the freezer but I'm afraid of the moisture will hurt the photo more than taking off some of the back.

Linda
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Old 10-15-2006, 05:31 PM
Jerryb Jerryb is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

hi,
I am just wondering if pec-12 would do it. It designed clean film and prints of non water soluable elements.... such as adhensives and oils and such... without hurting the emulsion layer...
in this maybe it get enough in the paper where it could soften the adhesive enough to pull the tape off.... an idea..
Quote:
Originally Posted by dak511
Hi,
I have several old 1968 photos that I put on non acid free paper and want to scrapbook them. The problem is I put them on using double-sided tape on the back. When I try to take the tape off, a little of the back of the photo comes with it. I've tried to use Un-do it and it still takes a little of the back off. Is it better to leave the tape on or doesn't the tape hurt the photo.

Thank you,
Linda
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  #7  
Old 10-15-2006, 06:09 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

welcome to RP, dak511.

i believe there are solvents for removing tape. try a craft store and ask around there. or you could try a search on google or yahoo or ask. you might also look at conservator sites; they often have something on those.

a small amount of the paper backing lost wont hurt the photo....much. just remember that that can add up. and before you do anything else, scan the image with a GOOD scanner, especially if it's a precious picture.

(i seem to recall acetone was good on tape, but please, find out for sure first! this is coming from an old man whose memory is going faster than his hair ) alchohol might work too, but again, either try a safe print to work with or find out more info from a reliable source.
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Old 10-27-2006, 05:55 AM
jaxk jaxk is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kraellin
(i seem to recall acetone was good on tape, but please, find out for sure first! this is coming from an old man whose memory is going faster than his hair ) alcohol might work too, but again, either try a safe print to work with or find out more info from a reliable source.


Acetone will do it - but avoid nail varnish remover which will be acetone plus an oil., unless you are very quick- dab some on and roll off the adhesive. then mop up the residue with a tissue.
In essence losing a little of the back of a photo printed on heavy paper will come to little harm if you simply scrape with a scalpel /craft knife blade .
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Old 12-03-2006, 11:39 AM
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Sally Jacobs Sally Jacobs is offline
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Re: Double sided tape on old photos

If I had to choose between losing a bit of the backing layer and putting strong chemical solvents near one of my prints -- I would choose losing a bit of the backing. Chemical solvents may offer what looks like a quick fix today, but none of us truly know what kind of damage those solvents will cause over time. There was a time not long ago when tape was considered a miraculous safe solution, ya know?

You were absolutely correct to stay away from the freezer, waaay too much moisture in there. Good luck, be patient and go slow, and as always -- make a copy before you try any advanced moves.

-Sally J.
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