HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT ANTIQUES OR COLLECTIBLES?

Send me an E-mail
(Please, no questions
 about value.)

Instructions for sending photographs of your pieces with your question.
 

What is a crotal bell?

a Swiss cow bell
a Christmas bell
a sleigh bell
                     To see the answer

Christmas Collectibles
by Lissa and Dick Smith

A fact-filled guide to Christmas collectibles offers information on and full-color photographs of Yuletide items from the Victorian era to the present.

                                  More Books

 WATCH VIDEOS

Origins of Christmas

The celebration of Christmas as we know it today stems from the traditions of several different cultures.

Click on the title to view.

And look for other videos in selected articles.

Have Bob speak
 on antiques to your group or organization.

More Information

Can't find what
 you're looking for?

Go to our Sitemap

Find out what's coming in the
2024 Winter Edition

of the
THE ANTIQUES ALMANAC

"THE VERNACULAR STYLE"

COMING IN
February

Share pages of this ezine with your friends using the buttons provided with each article.


Download our
Decorative Periods and Styles Chart
 

Read our newest glossary:

Antique Furniture Terminology
 from A to Z

courtesy of AntiquesWorldUK

Videos have
come to


The Antiques
Almanac

Expand your antiques experience.

Look for videos in various articles.

Just click on the
arrow to play.

Featured
Antique




Print Santa Doll

Caring for Antique and Vintage Cameras
by Bob Brooke

 

Collecting photographic film cameras, whether they’re antique or vintage, can be an fascinating and affordable pastime. But keeping them in tip-top shape can be a challenge because of the materials used in their construction.

Older cameras require more care than contemporary ones. Moisture is the chief danger to older cameras. Keeping them dry should be the first concern. Place moisture-absorbing packets in camera storage containers. Remove and replace them every six weeks. Store particularly delicate cameras in special sealed storage boxes.

Moisture not only damages the outsides of cameras but also the inside—the shutter mechanism.

Begin by making sure the lens is stored upright, so that if the lubricant in the shutter at the base of the lens dries out, it doesn’t drop in flaky black spots on the inside of it. Remove all lens filters and use both the back and front lens caps to keep out dust. When cleaning the lens, take care to avoid getting any cleaning liquid seeping inside. And every three or four months, turn the focusing and aperture rings to work the apertures and keep them lubricated.

It’s important to keep the cameras in the collection working. Turn the knobs, click the shutter as if to take a photo to lubricate it. And to prevent the spring inside from losing its flexibility, never store a camera with the shutter cocked.



Another thing that many collectors forget is to remove the batteries in all newer electronic cameras and equipment, such as light meters. This will help avoid damage if the batteries expire and leak. Do hold on to them so you know the right replacements.

Cleaning Older Cameras
Believe it or not, Windex applied with a cotton swab is the simplest way to clean the exteriors of older cameras. NEVER allow any lens cleaner or glass cleaner containing ammonia to come into contact with the lens. This especially applies to lens coatings made prior to the mid 1970s. The coatings back then were soft and not fused to the glass and the ammonia could eat into the lens coating.



For cameras that have a leather exterior and strap, a mild soapy water solution applied with a soft-bristled toothbrush, followed by saddle soap, followed by a silicone-based leather protectant, followed by shoe polish will keep them clean. Don't let the leather get too wet and soak through or the glue or shellac that attaches it to the camera may let go. If little bits of leather are sticking up, glue the snags back down with a 50/50 solution of bookbinder's glue and water, sparingly applied with a toothpick.

For cameras with a leatherette exterior, a soft toothbrush and Windex, followed by shoe polish, followed by a shine sponge will do nicely. After cleaning, apply a leather protectant but do not use Armorall, as it makes the camera’s surface slippery.

Camera Bellows
Many older cameras that folded up for storage had bellows. These can develop tiny pinholes. Replacement, the only permanent solution, is best.



Cleaning Metal Camera Surfaces
To clean aluminum or brass finishes, the best polish to use is Never-Dull. A chemical polish like Tarn-X can be used for especially stubborn stains on brass. Keep all chemical polishes away from the glass. For light cleaning, use a cotton swab dampened with distilled water.



< Back to Caring for Your Collections Archives               Next Article >

FOLLOW MY WEEKLY BLOG
Antiques Q&A


JOIN MY COLLECTION
Antiques and More on
Facebook

LIKE MY FACEBOOK PAGE
The Antiques Almanac on Facebook

No antiques or collectibles
are sold on this site.

How to Recognize and Refinish Antiques for Pleasure and Profit

Book: How to Recognizing and Refinishing Antiques for Pleasure and Profit
Have you ever bought an antique or collectible that was less than perfect and needed some TLC? Bob's new book offers tips and step-by- step instructions for simple maintenance and restoration of common antiques.

Read an Excerpt

Auction News
Get up to the minute news of antiques auctions around the country and the world.

Also see
The Auction Directory

Antiques News
Read breaking news stories from the world of antiques and collectibles.

Art Exhibitions
Search for art exhibitions in museums and galleries around the world.

Home | About This Site | Antiques | Collectibles | Antique Tips | Book Shop | Antique Trivia | Antique Spotlight | Antiques News  Special Features | Caring for Your Collections | Collecting | Readers Ask | Antiques Glossaries | Resources | Contact
Copyright ©2007-2023 by Bob Brooke Communications
Site design and development by BBC Web Services