Tortoiseshell Conservation Series – A Domed Box With Cracked Shell (Part 4)

With the outer “cast” in place I could progress to adding an inner support behind the crack (it turned out there were two cracks; I dealt with them identically).


Three of the materials tested: fine linen (L), tight fine nylon (R), and loose nylon “sheer” (B).

I knew I would be using 192g hot animal hide glue for the support, and spent a little time testing several support fabrics to evaluate them for both performance and appearance.  I had expected nylon sheer fabric to be the best, but it was not.  In the end I went with Japanese tissue paper with variable fibers.  Three layers of this affixed to an area slightly larger than the fracture ended this chapter of the treatment.

A quick note on using tissue paper for such a repair.  It is much better to tear the edges of the patching paper rather than cutting them.  This allows for a tapered edge on the patch, which both looks and performs better.


Up next: removing the outer “cast” and inpainting the inner support.