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Subject: Dust cloths

Dust cloths

From: Helen Lloyd <helen.lloyd>
Date: Wednesday, May 14, 2003
Anne E. Downey <adowney [at] amphilsoc__org> writes

>I am having a dickens of time finding disposable dust cloths that
>are not treated with any type of oil or cleaning agent. Does anybody
>out there have any suggestions?

and Laramie Hickey-Friedman <lhickey-friedman [at] menil__org> writes

>I have become quite fond of the micro-fibre dusting cloths
>(developed in Europe). While they are not disposable, they also are
>not treated with anything. The dusting cloths can be washed and
>reused many times.

The National Trust (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) has on a
few occasions tested micro-fibre dusting cloths in its historic
house collections, including an American brand called Dust Bunny.
Each time our house staff and conservators concluded that 100%
cotton dusters are equally effective, washable, longer-lasting, more
environmentally sustainable, and better value for money.

For general purpose cleaning we use white dusters in two sizes with
turned and machine-stitched hems (no overlocking that might
unravel). Where traces of white lint might be conspicuous (e.g. on
highly polished surfaces, and those not perfectly smooth), we use
blue-and-white check lint-free dusters.

Our supplier (who works hard to meet our specifications) is:

    Advance Wipers
    64 Abbey Road
    Bush Hill Park
    Middlesex EN1 2QN
    +44 20 8364 1000
    Fax: +44 20 8364 1010

Importantly in this context, for many 3-D objects with uneven or
intricate surfaces where dusting cloths might snag or be
ineffective, we use natural bristle brushes in a range of
traditional shapes and sizes, with a variety of bristle types.
Details of these brushes are in the National Trust Manual of
Housekeeping, limited edition reprint (2000), available from
sophie.blair [at] nationaltrust__org__uk, price UKP9.99 + p&p.

Finally, damp microfibre cloths are favoured by conservators for
cleaning glass from picture frames.  However, for cleaning window
glass, house staff prefer to use a damp chamois leather.  In their
experience traditional housekeeping methods and materials continue
to stand the test of time.

Helen Lloyd
Preventive Conservation Adviser (Housekeeping)
and Deputy Head Conservator
The National Trust
36 Queen Anne's Gate
London SW1H 9AS
+44 20 7447 6509
Fax: +44 20 7447 6640
Mobile +44 7774 109201

                  Conservation DistList Instance 16:72
                   Distributed: Monday, May 19, 2003
                       Message Id: cdl-16-72-002
Received on Wednesday, 14 May, 2003

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