Manufacturer and builder 3, 1882
A preparation, of which potash and soda are the principal components, has just been introduced into England, and is said to be a perfect paint remover. Some experiments made with the preparation upon various specimens of wood and metal, all old samples, well painted with several coats of good oil colors were very successful. The compound, which is of a cream-like consistency, and quite white, is spread over the painted surface, and after being left on a few minutes is wiped off. Its action upon the body of the paint is thorough and complete, a saponification is set up which continues, the soda is liberated, and this process goes on, the alkali being liberated as it is wanted, till the whole of the paint is removed. Painted surfaces in about a quarter of an hour show exposed as if it had been planed.
The action of this preparation seems to be two-fold. There is, first, the destructive action of the applied alkali, always caustic, and, next, a continued spongelike action going on; in other words, a constant and perfect causticity is maintained. A gas meter, if exposed to the compound about 20 minutes, has the japan removed and the bright metal exposed. Other forms of the preparation are of a weaker character, and nearer soap in their composition. They are intended to remove dirt, and their action is just the reverse of the compound already described. The preparations are liquid and are soluble in water, and their cleansing power upon cloth of an ummistakable dirty and greasy character is said to be almost magical. These solutions are adapted for delicate carvings and fabrics of all kinds and their use by restorers, decorators and others will be highly esteemed. The modification of the solution for cleaning cloth is well adapted for restoring the linings of railway carriages and stuff seats of all descriptions. No scraping or erasing is necessary, and there is nothing injurious, it is said, in the preparations which can attack or injure metals or cloths. They all produce a minimum action on brushes, which is a consideration, and, what is very important, the color is not taken out by the use of the solutions. The price is less than that of other preparations. The "paint remover" can be easily applied by being spread over the painted surface to be removed. It is sold in five-pound tins at about sixty cents.