What does our Conservation team think: conservation not restoration
Below you can see four additional petrol caps are used to illustrate the type of effect you would get from each treatment.
1. Would you treat the rust spots with tannic acid to prevent further rust?
This would not be the preferred option for conservation because tannic acid stops rust but changes the object’s appearance.
2. Would you paint over the pitted chrome with silver paint?
No, this would change the object’s appearance and painting over doesn’t stop rust.
3. Would you strip off damaged chrome and re-chrome the object?
No, we wouldn’t do this as part of a conservation treatment. Removing the chrome would remove historical evidence about the object.
4. Would you clean the chrome carefully to remove corrosion products and polish gently with a microfiber cloth?
Yes. This is the preferred approach of the Museum’s conservation team and is what we have done with the Royal Daimler petrol cap.