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Go Back   Bob Dunsire Bagpipe Forums > General Discussion > Do It Yourself (DIY)
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Do It Yourself (DIY) Making and repairing of instruments, accessories, and more.

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Old 04-30-2006, 11:07 AM   #1
fredolin
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Default prevent ivory from cracking

Hi,
having a set with real ivory projecting mounts and ring caps coming from an older set of pipes. All the caps are absolutely perfect and white colour, but on the projecting mounts I have a yellowed finish. Is it possible to lighten the pieces?
I have read in the forum that normal daylight will lighten the colour, how long will it last?
Now to the major problem: one mount has a small crack, not open, hardly visible, and about 3 cm long, so not runnig around the whole piece as you sometimes can see on older sets (so called "aging rings"???).
Is there anything I can do to stop this process of cracking, if there is a process at all?
Anything I should take care of?
What is the reason for ivory to crack (not talking about stress cracking from the wood leading to cracks on the mounts)?
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Old 04-30-2006, 12:10 PM   #2
DoogieG
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

Daylight will lighten the ivory to a nice light buttery colour if its decent ivory..African rather than Indian or marine ivory or bone etc..that tends to stay yellow.

I havent heard of anything to stop ivory cracking..altho when I oil my pipes I also give a good dollop to all the mounts, which for about 130 years old arent doing too badly!!
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Old 04-30-2006, 05:09 PM   #3
Andrew Lenz
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

You may wish to read my page on bagpipe ivory:

http://www.bagpipejourney.com/articl...ry_clean.shtml

It doesn't discuss repairing ivory cracks, but does talk about avoiding them a bit.

If someone gives you a method of lightening ivory with a liquid solution, don't do it!

Andrew
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Old 05-16-2006, 04:44 PM   #4
Bob Boyd
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

I have a set of 1924 S & I Hendersons that have been around the world several times, (The Royal Scots Fusillers and The Argyle & Sutherland Highlanders) and have the age cracks and the yellowing or patina you refer to. I found that a little almond oil on the mounts and atention to avoid quick temprature changes will slow down the natural ageing and cracking of the ivory. I don't think sun is a good idea (heat) nor is any chemical agent that might cause drying. The mounts are a natural substance and like our teeth, will eventually show signs of aging or patina which is a good thing.
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Old 05-17-2006, 12:56 AM   #5
Robert McDonald
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

Simply handling them should transfer enough natural oil from your skin to do the job.

Fondle them often

Robert
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Old 05-17-2006, 09:42 AM   #6
DoogieG
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

Nothing wrong with the Sun..at least not here in the UK..we dont see alot of it anyway. When I was given my old set of pipes they had been stuck in their box for 15 years. The ivory was a horrendous yellow colour..almost like the old types of plastic. But aftr a few months out of the box and in the fresh air they went to a lovely natural colour.....so nowt wrong with a bit of sun!!
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Old 05-17-2006, 11:32 AM   #7
fredolin
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

Thanks a lot for your answers, so I will just handle them with care.
But I have another question also belonging to this topic:
Had anyone of you ever taken his pipes to the dentist to do the job on your ivory or plastic mounts?
I think they should have the best material for repair.
To clarify: I didn't, just thought about it
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Old 05-18-2006, 06:08 AM   #8
Crushed Doublings
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

I had a friend who makes dentures do some repair work for me in the past so yes it can be done.
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Old 05-18-2006, 06:12 PM   #9
David Marshall
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

Regarding fixing cracks in ivory: If there are any dentists out there they could comment on using dental composites matched to the colour of the ivory and then hardened with a curing light. You can even get shade guides for matching up the resin color with the ivory material. Lots of curing lights for sale on Ebay.
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Old 05-19-2006, 11:39 AM   #10
piobman
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Default Re: prevent ivory from cracking

Just a quick word; In the old days, when pianos had ivory keys, technicians' service manuals included directions for whitening them (I believe this included application of "whiting" and buffing.

I also recently read an ad for a new "kit" designed to repair ivory piano keys that had been chipped, that would leave the color perfectly blended in (i.e., whether, white, off white, yeloowed, etc.

I'll try to gather up some of the info and set it out in greater detail.
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