Day Eleven. Coin conservation and the Egg Packing Challenge

We are now only a few days away from the end of camp in Mitrovica and starting to bring together all the individual exercises that the participants have completed into whole tasks. First up in the morning was the cleaning and conservation of an Ottoman coin, they firstly put their recently acquired documentation and condition assessments skills into action with describing, drawing and photographing the coins before conservation began. After discussing the conservation issues of each coin and possible decay mechanisms which could be occurring based on the visual examination, a conservation treatment was put in place.

Drawing the coin for documentation purposes

Drawing the coin for documentation purposes

 

The participants were able to test the effectiveness of three solvents (acetone, alcohol and white spirt) on the dirt and corrosion layers, applied with a cotton swab, the participants were either surprised or disappointed about how much dirt and corrosion they could remove from their coin, no mechanical cleaning techniques were used. Once the coins were cleaned we coated them with either Microcrystalline Wax or Paraloid B67 as a protecting layer for the fluctuating environmental conditions to which they returned. 

Test cleaning with solvents

Test cleaning with solvents

 

In the afternoon we returned to packing, after only previously exploring how you would pack textiles, Helen went through the process of how the make an acid-free tissue pad and how to pack 3D objects.

After they mastering the art of making pads a challenge was set, could they pack a fresh egg with all of the packing skills they had acquired over the camp? In groups they strategized the best way forward, a couple of groups went for the minimal approach, and one group thought the bigger the better. One thing was clear, the egg had become a precious commodity and they were determined that nothing would happen to it. 

Carefully packing the egg

Carefully packing the egg

After an hour of calculated and busy packing the precious cargo were taken out to the central courtyard to be “tested”, using a slightly unorthodox approach the boxes containing the eggs were rough handled (thrown to the ground) and finally kicked of the stage to test the packing. In an unheard of turn of events all 4 four eggs survived! so it was up to the judges to pick a winner.

Testing the packaging

Testing the packaging

A job well done to all

A job well done to all

It was decided that the group who used the least amount of packing should be crowed the winner and medals we given out, but as everyone else did so well chocolates were circulated to all for a job well done.