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 Post subject: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2018 5:47 pm 
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Victor Jr
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In the groove
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2018 5:38 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Cambridge UK
Seasons greetings to all! This holiday has provided a bit of time to turn my attention to the delapidated woodwork of a Style 11 single spring Monarch (see photo). I'm making the assumption that, given the damp conditions in which this has been stored and the patchy nature of the remaining finish, that I need to strip this back to the oak and then reapply new finish. I'm also thinking that the patchiness indicates that the stain is within the finish rather than the wood itself being stained. I have read (many times) Eric Reiss' advice on the matter, but does anyone know of suitable stripping and refinishing materials which are readily available in the UK? Or indeed, any general advice on th restoration process. I have some French polish which I've applied to great effect previously, but I've never had much luck with staining and pigments.
I'm also keen to know of any suppliers of suitable wood edging/beading. Otherwise, I'll again turn to Mr. Reiss and try moulding some myself. I'm hoping to capitalise on the remaining week or so of Christmas holiday! Many thanks in advance.


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2018 7:27 pm 
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Victor I
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Joined: Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:52 am
Posts: 123
Location: St. Albans, UK
I would try to avoid stripping. Try a little methylated spirit on a cloth or on 0000 grade wire wool and see if the colour becomes uniform or evens out on patchy areas. Then you can try to add French polish or button polish may be more the right tone.

Are you sure this was a single Spring Monarch? Does it have the original motor? The fluted corner pillars (rather than plain) and the hinged motor board (I see a hole for the top release knob) are often an indication of the triple spring motor version.

There are websites and eBay sellers that have oak mouldings similar to the rope for the top. Unfortunitely these all appear to be in the US and won't ship abroad because of the length they sell it in and they be won't be troubled to cut it into padded envelope size lengths. Also sadly postage is often very high from the States now so if you can make them yourself it may be best.


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2018 4:23 am 
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Victor Jr
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In the groove
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2018 5:38 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Cambridge UK
Many thanks, Victor O. I had also wondered about the case variant and the motor because a) the motor is a bevel drive with vertical governor, but the winding shaft protrudes through the case slightly (therefore, you can't lift the motor board on its hinges anyway!), b) the governor control shaft has been built up by a block of timber to engage with the speed adjuster screw and c) the lid has previously been tacked down. However, the case does match the dimensions mentioned on page 21 of His Master's Gramophone (12.75" square) and I thought that the example shown there also has fluted corner columns - although that might be a trick of the light. After avoiding the painful annual game of family Monopoly last night, I did find this possible supplier of twisted rope edging (albeit in beech) in the UK, but might try moulding some myself anyway, just to see how it works.
https://www.langbridge.co.uk/product/mi ... beech-519/
Thanks for the advice thus far and if it all goes wrong, I'll drown my sorrows in the meths. Hope you get out of that phone box before New Year!


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2018 10:16 pm 
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Victor III
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2014 10:12 pm
Posts: 777
I have a Columbian front-mount case and motor in a similar condition where much of the original finish (shellac) has flaked off and exposed bare wood. I have seen other machines in a similar condition. It would seem, for whatever reason, the shellac never properly adhered to the oak surface. Your case looks to have lost about a third of the original finish. Methlylated spirits as you know is 90% ethanol, the solvent for shellac. i suspect if you apply the ethanol with a rag you will probably remove what little remains. If you decide to remove the remaining shellac (which I'm not suggesting you do), then in my humble opinion the next best thing is to try to emulate the original intention of the manufacturer, which is not the same thing as trying to make your machine look new. Shellac comes in a great variety of natural colors including a dark amber, although many people seem to be only familiar with the orange shellac available in their local hardware stores. I get my shellac from a supplier in California who imports the raw shellac from Thailand and India. One needs to dissolve the material in ethanol then filter it--very easy to do. As for my Columbia, I am missing the traveling arm, horn support, and horn. I have done nothing to the case and won't until I find these parts or die trying, whichever comes first. I look forward to your progress.


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2018 3:37 am 
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Victor Jr
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In the groove
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2018 5:38 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Cambridge UK
So the photo I showed was of the worst surface of the case. My guess is that, along with the generally damp conditions, this might also have been exposed to direct sunlight. I've now applied isopropyl alcohol with fine wire wool and toothbrush to the other panels and remaining mouldings and got good interim results (carefully working around the label). But until I get this final side to a uniform state, it's going to be difficult to match it to the others. I'll keep working at it, but the incoming advice is very helpful. Thank you!
I've also experimented with casting some replacement mouldings with the best success being from this stuff:
https://www.waxhands.eu/index.php/casting-stone-kit/
...which produced a light brown and fine detailed reproduction which is (so far) robust enough to work with. I now need to file the back of each down to sit properly on the case before painting and attaching. I'll post some photos of "progress" soon. Some shellac (button polish) has been ordered but will take a view on the shade when it arrives! I'm also hoping that submitting a few more photos might lead to suggestions as to the machine's "pedigree".


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2018 11:52 am 
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Victor V
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:08 pm
Posts: 2169
Location: Harrison Township, MI
Governor Bearing wrote:
So the photo I showed was of the worst surface of the case. My guess is that, along with the generally damp conditions, this might also have been exposed to direct sunlight. I've now applied isopropyl alcohol with fine wire wool and toothbrush to the other panels and remaining mouldings and got good interim results (carefully working around the label). But until I get this final side to a uniform state, it's going to be difficult to match it to the others. I'll keep working at it, but the incoming advice is very helpful. Thank you!
I've also experimented with casting some replacement mouldings with the best success being from this stuff:
https://www.waxhands.eu/index.php/casting-stone-kit/
...which produced a light brown and fine detailed reproduction which is (so far) robust enough to work with. I now need to file the back of each down to sit properly on the case before painting and attaching. I'll post some photos of "progress" soon. Some shellac (button polish) has been ordered but will take a view on the shade when it arrives! I'm also hoping that submitting a few more photos might lead to suggestions as to the machine's "pedigree".


You may need to add a little finish to that bad side. While the advice about not stripping it may be good, unfortunately, nature has taken the upper hand and has stripped about 50% of the finish anyway. You can't fix what isn't there anymore. But, adding a little shellac and blending new & old may give good results.


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:02 pm 
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Victor Jr
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In the groove
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2018 5:38 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Cambridge UK
A wee bit of an update on this one with photos included of the case once cleaned and partially stripped with iso-propyl alcohol and fine steel wool. But also I'm seeking guidance on the back bracket. Generally, I'm very tolerant of leaving things be, but with the rusted state of this one, any strong opinions against me stripping and repainting? And any advice on appropriate black paint available in the UK? Matt/gloss/silk? As ever, always appreciate the community's advice!


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:17 pm 
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Victor II
Martin - 16 y/o
Joined: Mon May 07, 2018 6:27 pm
Posts: 399
Governor Bearing wrote:
A wee bit of an update on this one with photos included of the case once cleaned and partially stripped with iso-propyl alcohol and fine steel wool. But also I'm seeking guidance on the back bracket. Generally, I'm very tolerant of leaving things be, but with the rusted state of this one, any strong opinions against me stripping and repainting? And any advice on appropriate black paint available in the UK? Matt/gloss/silk? As ever, always appreciate the community's advice!

It may not help much, but I guess using a car paint cleaner and polisher could make it look decent (maybe). A lot of people on the forum use "meguiars scratch x 2.0", and you can also replace the decal with one form Greg Cline.

Martin


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:22 pm 
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Victor IV
I've got both kinds of music--classical & rag-time.
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 11:39 am
Posts: 1082
Location: South Carolina
You could also, before you apply any wax, buff with a 3000 to 6000 grit foam abrasive disc in the rusty areas, and then treat with a gun bluing. In America we use Birchwood-Casey products to treat gun barrels to turn them back to blue, and I have found that it works well.

This would let you save the original paint where it is, treat the old steel where it's rusted through, and then apply your Gregg Cline decal BEFORE you wax.

After the decal, spray with amber shellac from an aerosol can/HVLP pressure gun.

That should do ya! (with my tiny experience and vastly expanded confidence, I spake boldly.)


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 Post subject: Re: Restoring a Style 11 Single Spring Monarch case
PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:26 am 
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Victor VI
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Needle Tins are Addictive
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:32 pm
Posts: 3769
Location: Belmont, North Carolina
My opinion (for what it's worth) is that the paint on the back bracket is too far gone to look good on a restored machine. I would strip it to bare metal, paint it with black lacquer, add a Cline decal and topcoat it with amber shellac or amber lacquer toner...

That being said, I'm not a fan of rust and chipped paint as it gives an appearance of neglect, not "patina". The Pickers would probably disagree...
"The phonograph† is not of any commercial value."
Thomas Alva Edison - Comment to his assistant, Samuel Insull.

"No one needs a Victrola XX, a Perfected Graphophone Type G, or whatever you call those noisy things."
My Wife


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