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Glenda B.
Glenda B., Antiques Appraiser
Category: Antiques
Satisfied Customers: 23828
Experience:  40+ yrs. Experience, 40+yrs.Dealer buying/selling antiques.14+ yrs. Antique Store Owner. Member of AOA, AADA. Advanced studies in Antiques at University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
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I have a vintage 1930 green celluloid dresser set, displayed

Customer Question

I have a vintage 1930 green celluloid dresser set, displayed on a dresser, and Iit is losing its green color to white cloudy spots. Can you please tell me what I can do to stop this and repair the spots that are on the pieces of the set. Thank you for your time and reply.
Angie ***@******.***
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Antiques
Expert:  Glenda B. replied 1 year ago.
My name is Glenda,
I will be glad to help you today.
Can you send a picture of this?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I do no have a picture nor do I know how to send it, I'm sorry.
Expert:  Glenda B. replied 1 year ago.
I am sorry. I did find this information for you. There is no way to restore what has happened, Celluloid can deteriorate over time. The biggest flaw in celluloid as it ages, the camphor molecules are ‘squeezed’ out of the mass due to the unsustainable pressure used in the production. The pressure causes the nitrocellulose molecules to bind back to each other or crystallize, and this results in the camphor molecules being shoved out of the material. Once exposed to the environment, camphor can undergo sublimation at room temperature, leaving the plastic as brittle nitrocellulose. Also, with exposure to excess heat, the nitrate groups can break off and expose nitrogen gases, such as nitrous oxide and nitric oxide, to the air.
There is no repair that will put the set back to original. The only thing to do is to keep this out of direct sunlight, and keep it in a low humidity area. Do not wash it with any harsh soaps, just dust with a damp cloth.
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