Hatchfield, 2014: MINIMIZING DAMAGE IN STORAGE AND DISPLAY
Table 4: Acceptability of support materials
Tycore® (neutral pH paper
Acid-free foam core products
Most other foam core products
Coroplast® (fluted polyethylene/
Archival corrugated cardboard
should be neutral cure (without acetic acid),
(Tables 3, 4)
often specified for electrical applications.
In general, metal and glass are materials that
can be safely used in enclosures with
specimens and artifacts. Wood and wood
products are less stable and are likely to off gas
acids and pollutants. However, if wood must be
Avoid the use of products containing oils or
used in a display area, it should be coated with
alkyd resins, including oil stains, oil-modified
an approved water-borne polyurethane or
polyurethanes and oil paints. Some moisture-
sealed completely with aluminum sheeting or
borne polyurethanes are safer for use. A
an aluminum laminate (Marvelseal®).
minimum of three coats should be applied, and
surfaces must be aired for at least three weeks
before installing works of art. Acrylic paints can
be used over sealed case interiors, but also
should be allowed sufficient airing time before
installation (at least three weeks).
A list of acceptable plastics is given in Table 5.
Fabrics (Table 9)
Adhesives (Table 6)
Cotton or linen fabrics are often acceptable, but
Adhesives should be water-based or solvented
require testing before use. Surface treatments
acrylics. Avoid the use of rubber based,
may contain formaldehyde or other volatile
substances potentially damaging to works of
adhesives with the exception of phenolic
art. Fire retardants can be extremely corrosive
adhesives for plywood.
and should be avoided. Some dyes, particularly
darker colors, may contain sulfur or acidic
components. Wool and silk should not be used.
Gaskets and tubing should be made from
silicone (neutral cure, the type made without
A list of acceptable paper products is given in
acetic acid), polyethylene, polypropylene or
Teflon. Test adhesive-backed types before use.
Do not use polyvinyl chloride (PVC) products
such as Tygon® tubing. These can evolve
hydrochloric acid, and plasticizers may migrate
from them. Rubber based products require
A list of other acceptable materials is given in
testing before use. If silicone caulk is used, it
97 Journal of Paleontological Techniques