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-   -   Cleaning and repairing the Shellac clear coat on Vintage sewing machine heads (https://www.quiltingboard.com/vintage-antique-machine-enthusiasts-f22/cleaning-repairing-shellac-clear-coat-vintage-sewing-machine-heads-t193635.html)

psdumas 09-09-2017 08:22 PM

Hey thanks so much, Glenn!

Just do the french polishing with the rag/shellac/linseed oil on top of the marred part of the bed? Sorry for all the questions.. but, messing this up worries me! :shock: Pat

bkay 09-20-2017 02:49 PM

The 301 I just bought seems to have a clearcoat on it that's missing in some spots. Would you guess it's shellac? I can't find the mfg. date, as Ismacs just has 1950-1959. It was made in the Andersonville plant.


Glenn 09-20-2017 03:59 PM

It is most likely shellac. You can take Q-tip with alcohol and dab it in a spot the will not be seen and if it is shellac the spot will get tacky and dull. If nothing happens it is lacquer. If it is shellac you can repair with the french polish.

bkay 09-21-2017 05:43 AM

Thanks, Glenn.


psdumas 09-21-2017 09:29 AM

Thank you for your time Glenn. I am going to get brave and try this. How does the shellac and lin oil dry when putting over original shellac? Any clouding under the new coating? I will clean machine of the waxing i've done and just f polish with wax free shellac and BLO. Sound good to you? Thanks..Pat

Glenn 09-21-2017 11:04 AM

Sounds like a plan to me. There will no problem with the oil and shellac over the old. After you get the look you want,
you can then wax the machine to maintain the shine. I use a good quality car wax for this. But remember the shellac need to cure for about three weeks.

psdumas 09-21-2017 05:50 PM

thank you again, Glenn!

Ah.. I saw some u tubes about shellacing, and the ridges where the top coat was destroyed didn't seem to go away. I think I will pence on it more. I know I will make a mess of it and the good parts of the top coat will look different. I've messed up things like this before, and I know I will make it look worse than it already is. If I could take away the ridges where the topcoat is missing, then I would.

very Sincerely, Pat

NZquilter 09-22-2017 05:43 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by Glenn (Post 5339059)
Ok, here we go the first two pics are the supplies and tools needed to do what I do with these old machines. Now remember this will not completely get rid of the blemishes and rough spots on the japan of the machine and this technique will only work on a shellac finish which is 95% of the machines( unless you get an East German machine like Charlee). If you follow these instructions you will do no harm to your machne but if in doubt please ask questions before starting and you may want to practice on something first. Now PLEASE STAY AWAY FROM THE DECALS UNTIL I TELL YOU. I can't be responsible for damages to your machine. Now lets have fun and clean an old machine.

Glenn, will this tutorial fix this peeling off shellac?

Also, please forgive my ingorance, but is this tutorial the same as French polish? Or is French polish something different, and to be applied after one does your restoring method? Thanks!

Glenn 09-22-2017 11:05 AM

Yes the tut is the same. No the french polish will prevent other flaking but will not fix the area already chipped. You will have to clean and sand the area to get rid of rust and then fill in the area with matching paint. It must be over filled so you can bring it down to match the original, the you can french polish it.

Glenn 09-22-2017 11:09 AM

If the ridges are still there then the missing shellac was not built up enough to be level with the old.

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