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  Beta cloth patches: care and preservation

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Author Topic:   Beta cloth patches: care and preservation
SPACEKID
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Posts: 57
From: UK
Registered: Oct 2007

posted 07-18-2008 12:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SPACEKID   Click Here to Email SPACEKID     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Anyone know the best way to remove creases from a Beta cloth patch?

Go4Launch
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Posts: 431
From: Seminole, Fla.
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 07-23-2008 10:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have tried it and have had absolutely no success. I had an Apollo 12 beta that wasn't cut square and since I had another I tried a hot steam iron on an ironing board -- I eventually got the cloth pretty wet -- but the crease did not change much at all.

ilbasso
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Posts: 1501
From: Greensboro, NC USA
Registered: Feb 2006

posted 09-29-2008 01:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I recently acquired a beta cloth Apollo 11 patch that has a large amount - almost a square foot - of extra cloth off to one side of the printed patch. Does it diminish the value of the piece to trim it to a more square shape, or should I retain the entire piece? I would like to frame it but it will be very difficult to do if I retain all the cloth.

Editor's note: Threads merged.

spaced out
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Posts: 2750
From: Paris, France
Registered: Aug 2003

posted 09-29-2008 02:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'm generally in favour of keeping items intact but in this case beta cloth patches were supposed to be trimmed to a large square around the emblem itself so I say trim off the excess. Don't overdo it though.

ilbasso
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Posts: 1501
From: Greensboro, NC USA
Registered: Feb 2006

posted 09-29-2008 02:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yeah, I would need to leave enough extra fabric around it to stretch it out, anyway. There is a bit of a crease.

benguttery
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Posts: 542
From: Fort Worth, TX, USA
Registered: Feb 2005

posted 09-29-2008 09:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for benguttery   Click Here to Email benguttery     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have trimmed several of my beta cloth patches primarily so they fit in my storage sleeves, but also to deal with fraying around edges. Once trimmed and stored they were fine. I had the scraps around for years; they were hard to throw away.

spaced out
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Posts: 2750
From: Paris, France
Registered: Aug 2003

posted 09-30-2008 02:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You can use the excess material to do a few experiments to try to answer the age-old question - how do you get creases out of beta cloth?

Go4Launch
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Posts: 431
From: Seminole, Fla.
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 11-08-2008 09:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I used a steam iron on beta cloth once (got the fabric quite wet) but failed to remove a crease.

ilbasso
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Posts: 1501
From: Greensboro, NC USA
Registered: Feb 2006

posted 11-08-2008 11:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How about removing stains from Beta cloth? There are a few discolorations on one piece I have. I'm reluctant to try any cleaning products for fear of damaging the silk screening.

Rick Mulheirn
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Posts: 2809
From: England
Registered: Feb 2001

posted 11-09-2008 03:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I remember watching a makeover show in which fabrics were cleaned by wiping them with a damp face cloth that had first been dabbed on a neutral Ph face soap.

I tried the technique on an old soviet EVA glove that was pretty grubby, but not heavily stained... and it came up a treat.

You might want to try this on some of your off cuts.

SPACEKID
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Posts: 57
From: UK
Registered: Oct 2007

posted 04-12-2009 09:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for SPACEKID   Click Here to Email SPACEKID     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Has anyone had any success in stopping Beta patches from fraying at the edges?

I know that rare damaged books are glued back together using a time tested mixture of flour and water in a paste. Does anyone think this maybe a good idea?

Editor's note: Threads merged.

Go4Launch
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Posts: 431
From: Seminole, Fla.
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 04-15-2009 08:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Steve, I would not advise putting any sort of paste on Beta cloth; storing them in archival-quality transparent pages works well. If you don't handle the edges, they won't fray. If you must handle them, pinking shears will work.

Gene
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Posts: 16
From: Troy Mi
Registered: Aug 2009

posted 08-15-2009 05:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gene   Click Here to Email Gene     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What is the best way to frame up beta cloths? I have three finally, so I am seeking advice on how to best preserve them.

mode1charlie
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Posts: 676
From: Honolulu, HI, USA
Registered: Sep 2010

posted 09-23-2010 04:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mode1charlie   Click Here to Email mode1charlie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have an unflown Apollo 16 beta cloth patch signed by Charlie Duke. I want to frame it but am not sure the best way to do it so as not to damage it at all.

Is there any possibility of "bleed" if it were to be sandwiched directly underneath plexiglass? (I know that doing so with glass on any paper document is a very bad idea.)

For what are hopefully obvious reasons, I don't want to actually mount the cloth to anything - no glue or adhesives - hence the idea to have it sandwiched between acid-free matte board and plexy.

If anyone has any experience with mounting one of these and could pass along their advice, that would be great. Thanks in advance!

Editor's note: Threads merged.

Go4Launch
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Posts: 431
From: Seminole, Fla.
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 09-25-2010 09:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes there is an easy solution: simply use an acid-free matte with a square or circular opening in front -- the beta panel is thereby not in contact with the plexi. Generally looks better, too!

stsmithva
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Posts: 1544
From: Fairfax, VA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 07-03-2013 11:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for stsmithva   Click Here to Email stsmithva     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I purchased a beta cloth patch a while ago on eBay that was quite inexpensive because - ack - the seller had stepped on it, and there are very clear, dirty sneaker tread marks in an area about 2x6. I'll try the brushing and vacuuming mentioned above, but does anyone have any other suggestions? Thanks!

garyd2831
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Posts: 521
From: Syracuse, New York, USA
Registered: Oct 2009

posted 07-04-2013 08:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garyd2831   Click Here to Email garyd2831     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Could it be placed flat in a slightly soapy bath solution and using a cloth to wipe away the stain/tread mark? I would use a flat plastic type of a container big enough to lay the patch flat down. Using some laundry detergent (small amount) and maybe a little warm mostly cold water, gently wipe across the dirty area. This is just a suggestion.

JBoe
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Posts: 484
From: Churchton, MD, USA
Registered: Oct 2012

posted 07-05-2013 08:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for JBoe   Click Here to Email JBoe     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Getting back to the crease question, have you tried laying a damp cloth over the crease and then ironing on the damp cloth? The beta cloth may be damp after that.

Go4Launch
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Posts: 431
From: Seminole, Fla.
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 07-06-2013 09:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You're welcome to try the damp cloth approach but I would doubt it would make much difference. On this and the cleaning question, I think it's good to remember, after all, that that Beta cloth was selected as the outer layer for lunar EVA suits, worn in in some very extreme conditions. It's smart to treat it carefully, but in my experience it's pretty durable.

Ronpur
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Posts: 575
From: Brandon, Fl
Registered: May 2012

posted 07-28-2013 09:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ronpur   Click Here to Email Ronpur     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just won an Apollo 12 Beta Cloth Patch (my first beta!) and would like to display it behind a matte that shows the size of the patch on the suit. Does anyone know the dimensions of the patch as it was cut down for the suit? 4x4 or larger? And what type of glass or plastic would preserve the cloth the best in the frame?

Ronpur
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Posts: 575
From: Brandon, Fl
Registered: May 2012

posted 08-01-2013 09:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ronpur   Click Here to Email Ronpur     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My new Apollo 12 patch!

Tykeanaut
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Posts: 1919
From: Worcestershire, England, UK.
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 08-01-2013 11:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Congratulations on your acquisition! I'm no expert but a frame that cuts out UV I would imagine is a must?

Ronpur
Member

Posts: 575
From: Brandon, Fl
Registered: May 2012

posted 08-01-2013 01:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ronpur   Click Here to Email Ronpur     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I found a 12x12 document frame for now that will keep it flat and clean. It is a start.

jonspace
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Posts: 89
From: VA/MD USA
Registered: Jan 2014

posted 02-16-2014 04:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jonspace   Click Here to Email jonspace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have a small handful of Apollo Beta cloth patches that I'd like to frame and display. I'm pretty new to collecting.

What is the general guidelines for caring for Beta patches? Are they sensitive to UV light? Is acid free tape suitable for matting/framing? Will this material corrode or become brittle over time?

Editor's note: Threads merged.

DChudwin
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Posts: 1043
From: Lincolnshire IL USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 11-09-2014 05:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for DChudwin   Click Here to Email DChudwin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have about five Beta cloth patches from Apollo and Skylab missions. The problem is that the outside threads are fraying. What is the best way to store cut Beta cloth so that the swatch does not unravel over the years?

I currently have them in hard plastic photo holders. Is there a better way to store them?

If I want to have them framed, how should they be attached to the matte board? Adhesives, corner holders and stitches are methods I have used for material other than Beta cloth.

Any comments on the care and feeding of Beta cloth patches would be appreciated.

Editor's note: Threads merged.

jonspace
Member

Posts: 89
From: VA/MD USA
Registered: Jan 2014

posted 11-09-2014 05:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jonspace   Click Here to Email jonspace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have a large collection of Beta cloths (including flown, used, and prepped) and this is the best I've come up with after speaking with folks from the Smithsonian, the American Institute for Conservation of Historic Works, and the Washington Conservation Guild.

For storage, use a binder with 12"x12" archival grade poly sleeves. The best way to prevent fraying, is to stop handling them. This also keeps them away from UV when you're not enjoying viewing them.

For framing, the safest way to do this is to encapsulate them using archival grade polyester (such as melinex). For framing materials use 99% UV filtering glass/acrylic, 100% cotton rag matting AND backing. Call several frame shops and be very cautious. More often than not, they sell "acid free" materials, but then use things like foam core, and only partial UV protection. I've even purchased a flown beta from a dealer that was "archival" framed, and when we took the frame apart, the beta was touching the foam core, the glazing was not UV-protective, and the edges of the beta were taped with acidic adhesive (masking tape!) directly to the foam core backing (which loses its acid-resistance over time, and will overtime become acidic and stain your beta).

Here is what the recommended method looks like and the glass.

All times are CT (US)

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