Stabilizing Reverse Painted Tablet and Filling in Missing Sections

Discussion in 'Reverse Glass and Dial Painting' started by gleber, Dec 25, 2017.

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  1. gleber

    gleber Registered User

    Jun 15, 2015
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    Downingtown, Pennsylvania USA
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    I just acquired a Gilbert Ogee with the tablet in the photoi below. There are two spots that are missing large sections, and some smaller ones. There is an area above the smaller gap that is a big chip that has detached from the glass, but it still secure. I want to stabilize it so it doesn't flake off. What is the best method to resecure this section?

    Also, I would like to try to restore the missing sections, but I'm torn. The clock is not that valuable, and I do like to learn new skills, but I don't want to devalue this any more than the impact of the existing damage. But, boy would I like to get out my paints and give it a try. So, even though I am itching to tear into this and would not be afraid to do so, The better half of my brain say a more prudent solution is to paint the missing sections on something like paper and attach it to the back of the glass somehow. I think I can do a good enough job that it would look good from across the room (better than the gaping holes). Two questions:
    1. Does anyone have a good detailed photo of this scene (I've seen it before, so it must be somewhat popular)?
    2. What would be the best method to attach a "patch" to the back and not damage the paint?
    Thanks all, and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    Tom
    20171225_113330_resized.jpg 20171225_113359_resized.jpg 20171225_113414_resized.jpg
     
  2. Rockin Ronnie

    Rockin Ronnie Registered User
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    Nov 18, 2012
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    I am interested as well.

    Ron
     
  3. Sooth

    Sooth Registered User
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    Feb 19, 2005
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    I believe this type of work is best left to professional art conservators. Paint on glass is exceptionally delicate and you can very easily ruin an original glass (I know from experience).
     
  4. klokwiz

    klokwiz Registered User
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    Feb 4, 2009
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    Tom,

    Your reverse glass is in good condition to begin with. you can stabilized the flaking areas by applying clear varnish between the loose flakes and glass with a small brush. Varnish was originally used to adhere materials to the glass in the reverse glass process. if you apply it under the flaked area and gently press flake to the glass it will re-bond the flakes to the glass. This will also keep them from falling off. You will need to determine if the other areas of the paint warrant resealing to prevent further damage from pain falling off. Meaning that if there is enough loose paint you may want to coat the back completely to seal it to the glass. You must be very careful not to do this if the paint is not falling off. It does not appear to be doing that to me.

    The next level of "repair" would be to paint in the areas that have been lost. This means using ink where ink lines were and oil paints where paint was used. Doing this requires an understanding of how the process was performed originally so it can be duplicated only in the missing areas. AVOID the temptation to just go at it and start painting in spots. There is nothing worse than finding a reverse glass that someone broad stroked over the back to fill in missing spots. It has to be done properly.

    I want to caution you that many would be of the opinion that you should leave it as is and do nothing, regardless of the "value" of the clock, leaving the painting as is and original.

    As you mentioned adding a false back to give the illusion of paint is another easily reversible way of improving its appearance and leaving as is. I would not apply "patches" to the paint directly but put a panel (paper, cardboard, etc. with your painted area to show thru "window" of missing paint in glass.

    I and others have posted repairs of this sort, search under my name for one.

    Joe.
     
    ballistarius likes this.

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