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What is the best way of storing/displaying medal collections?


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Great items guys! Keep them coming!

I guess conservation only came top of many people's agenda's in the last decades. I have seen many museums start to try to do something about it of late. But some dmage is sady irreversible!

Jim :cheers:

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Hello,

Pop in with a question: does anyone know of an (online) shop , preferably in continental Europe where one can buy Riker Display boxes? S/H costs from the US or Uk are rather high compared to the price of the displays themselves and there's always that risk of damage.

Thanks for any info

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I want to add, that for silver srewback orders nothing is better than simple cardboard.

Gerd, I'm afraid that in 1 or 2 years you will already see that the reverse of your medals will be discoloured. Cardboard is not good for your medals, I swear. I should avoid putting your medals into contact with cardboard; otherwise you will be very disappointed in few years. :unsure:

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Gerd, I'm afraid that in 1 or 2 years you will already see that the reverse of your medals will be discoloured. Cardboard is not good for your medals, I swear. I should avoid putting your medals into contact with cardboard; otherwise you will be very disappointed in few years. :unsure:

Bryan, thanks for the warning. :cheers: I?ll check, what i can use instead.

Gerd

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Gerd, I learned that by making an error myself when I first started collecting. I had put a cardboard piece between the screw and the order. 1 year or 1 1/2 year later I wanted to see the serial number of this Yugoslavian order. I saw the "damage" that the cardboard did to my order Look at the discolouration from the card board piece.

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Matboard is the heavy cardboard

used in mats for pictures

[decorative cardboard frame

that spaces the picture from the glass]

its found at frame shops and art supply stores

comes in colors, and some types are

acid free and buffered for archival display

you would want the acid free

you would also want acid free for framing documents

and acid free folders for storing historic doccuments

most felt is acid based, which is why it is not

a good archival medium.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Is the discolouration from the cardboard corrosion or lack of patination arising from contact with it.

To explain myself:

Did the cardboard corrode the existing patina? or:

Did the cardboard prevent the back of the order from patination?

Judging from the short period of time during which the 'damage' has occured and the fact that patination takes so much longer than a few months to develop, I would indeed say that the cardboard had a high acid content!

Jim

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"felt" vs "matboard"

As some of you may know...me and my collection have been parted. When opening up a couple of my felt backed frames to pack the medals, I smelled a strong metallic smell in a couple of the frames. Whereas the air in my frames does not circulate much and each frame may host anywhere between 10-20 medals, I get the feeling that the technically "acid free" felt backing I was using for these 2 frames was in fact not acid free at all! Its amazing how one brand of felt differs in manufacture to another! I believe its not so much the felt itself but the adhesive used to attach the felt to the back of the frame that does the damage!

I believe that a sheet of acid free matboard as redcross proposed will probably go a long way to providing for good safe display and I will surely replace the backing in these 2 particular frames to see how this works out. I will keep you posted with the results...... although of course.... it might be a while! I trust Gerd will too. Like that we can compare the results and benefits of shifting from felt and cardboard to matboard.

Jim :cheers:

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"felt" vs "matboard"

As some of you may know...me and my collection have been parted. When opening up a couple of my felt backed frames to pack the medals, I smelled a strong metallic smell in a couple of the frames. Whereas the air in my frames does not circulate much and each frame may host anywhere between 10-20 medals, I get the feeling that the technically "acid free" felt backing I was using for these 2 frames was in fact not acid free at all! Its amazing how one brand of felt differs in manufacture to another! I believe its not so much the felt itself but the adhesive used to attach the felt to the back of the frame that does the damage!

I believe that a sheet of acid free matboard as redcross proposed will probably go a long way to providing for good safe display and I will surely replace the backing in these 2 particular frames to see how this works out. I will keep you posted with the results...... although of course.... it might be a while! I trust Gerd will too. Like that we can compare the results and benefits of shifting from felt and cardboard to matboard.

Jim :cheers:

Its noticed this discoloration on some of my orders too, which were mounted with some cloth, which i bought in a hobbyists shop. The seller told me, its acid free and shouldn?t do any harm to my orders. So either the used cardboard or the used cloth caused the discoloration. The ones, that i had mounted on cardboard alone, were okay. But now i have dismounted them though after Bryans warning.

Will keep you guys updated with any further results...

Very informative thread, btw!

regards,

Gerd

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Very informative thread, btw!

When you consider the cumulative years of collecting expertise within a forum, there is nothing better than members putting their heads together and exchanging information!!! We are sitting on a real gold mine of info and expertise in GMIC!!!

May it never run dry and may its gold never tarnish!! ;)

Jim :cheers:

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When you consider the cumulative years of collecting expertise within a forum, there is nothing better than members putting their heads together and exchanging information!!! We are sitting on a real gold mine of info and expertise in GMIC!!!

May it never run dry and may its gold never tarnish!! ;)

Jim :cheers:

Jim, i agree completely and it is not limited on the soviet section only :cheers:

Gerd

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We are sitting on a real gold mine of info and expertise in GMIC!!!

We are not only sitting on a gold mine of info and expertise, but we are also sitting on our very own "gold mine" (collection). Therefore it is very important to not mess with them in order to pass our collections over the next generations. We are only temporary guardians of those historical memorabilia, that?s why we have to do all our best to preserve them.

I learn with my error with the cardboard. I wanted to prevent the screw-nut to the order so the order will not suffer any damage. By trying to protect my order, I did harmed it with the chemicals from the cardboard.

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In fact that is why my usual approach is

"DO NOT TOUCH THE MEDAL UNLESS YOU REALLY HAVE TO.... AND WHEN U REALLY HAVE TO - BE CAREFUL!!!!"

I disagree that medals or orders or even unfiorms are cleaned, polished, handled with bare hands etc etc etc..... And if there are stains, glues or anything else, the less you tamper with the medal, the better it is because in an attempt to do good and protect the medal, sometimes more damage is actually done!

I know of a case where a first world trio (British) with very dirty ribbons was cleaned by gently brushing with distilled water. The ribbons were no more after the exercise in spite of the collector's best intentions...... And if that were the only case I know of ....... :speechless:

With all other things its a learning curve! And sometimes we all make mistakes.... usually less costly ones!! Its just the way it goes with us!

What would be great would be if a professional conservator would be around to give tips! Till such a member joins GMIC, we must make do as best as possible with our experiences.

Jim:cheers:

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  • 1 year later...
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  • 4 months later...

I came to this forum hoping I had found the right place for some assistance, and after reading the posts about felt and matboard, I believe I have. However I think I may need more help.

I am putting together a collection of medals earned by my grandfather in WW2. My father has been lamenting for years that he wished he had those medals his father was buried with. However, now that I have made some headway in the collection part, caring for them, and properly preparing them for display has left me scratching my head.

From the sounds of earlier posts in this thread, simple metal polish should do, but do I need a sealant afterwards? Not being a military member myself, I also find I am unaware of the proper methods of the display: Medals above the insignia badges, with the medal ribbons above that?

I'm trying to put together an honourable tribute for a man that fought for his homeland, and the son he left behind. Any help you could give would be greatly appreciated.

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Hi DaveC

The way I've seen the medals displayed to good effect was get them mounted on a bar and the frame them with a picture, unit badges underneath this,medals and then a name tag or plaque -makes an effective display will try and see if I have a picture of one of the groups I've done

Cheers

Perce

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