Soaking off US Stamps

Discussion in 'United States Stamps' started by bickerstonehall, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. Darrin

    Darrin Active Member

    Also, are there quality differences between different lighter fluids? I have heard that Ronsonol is better than say Zippo for stamp purposes. I also use lighter fluid for watermark detection.
  2. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    I use Zippo fluid but Ronsonol is cheaper, for me anyway in the states but isn't it made it England? Not sure on that?
  3. Larry L. Taylor

    Larry L. Taylor Active Member

    There was an article in a recent Linn's that talked about removing the self-adhesives. There's something called Goo-B-Gone? that works, but after playing around with that stuff and white gasoline and Naptha (paint thinner - get it at any hardware or paint store), I found that naptha works best for getting the stamp lifted off the paper, albeit the gum is still attached to the stamp. I use a needle oiler to dispense the naptha to the back of the paper holding the stamp (it soaks thru the paper). That where the Pure Citrus (orange or lemon 'flavored') room deodorizer comes in ( I get that in the cleaning department at my local Home Depot). Quick spray on the back of the stamp, and wipe gently with a paper towel (Kleenex is too soft). All the glue ends up on the paper towel, so after a few stamps, throw the towel away and get a fresh one.

    There is no residual odor if you'll give the stamps a chance to 'air' for maybe 10 or 15 minutes. If you're careful and thorough with the wiping, there won't be any sticiness or oiliness on the stamps either. I would strongly advise that your adhesive removal operations occur in a well ventilated area because of the naptha organics; not good to breath.
  4. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    Your very welcome.
    POLICEDIVER likes this.
  5. kacyds

    kacyds New Member

    I have been using the "Pure Citrus" spray for some time now. It has a pleasant smell and is all natural, 100% Orange peel oil.
    1. Spray the back of the stamp on the envelope.
    2. With your stamp tongs, gentle slide the tongs under the stamps and lift the stamp off the paper. This can be done within seconds after spraying the stamp.
    3. Put the stamp face down on a sheet of paper and respray lightly with the Pure Orange.
    4. With a straight edge of a putty knife or ruler, lightly scrape off the adhesive.
    5. The stamp might be a little stickey. Take a clean rag and wipe the stamp. All glue should be removed.
    6. Let the stamp dry.
    I have been doing this now for a couple of months, and it has worked wonderfull with no problems. It only works with the self adhesives. Also works wonders with the UK Machin stamps without damaging the U-shaped security slots.
  6. steve logan

    steve logan Logie Bear

    kacyds where would i be able to buy the "Pure Orange"
  7. kacyds

    kacyds New Member

    I seen it at Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Lowes..... you probably dont have some of these stores in the UK, but look in the air freshner aisle in most stores. And Im sorry but its called "Pure Citrus" lol

    View attachment 1048
  8. kacyds

    kacyds New Member

    Have you found it locally yet Steve? If not, I have seen it on the internet. has it, too
  9. desertgem

    desertgem Active Member

    Since it is D-Limonene ( chemically). If you want the pure stuff without the spray can, you can buy it here and others.

    I still like the Ronsono/zippo ( naptha ) lighter fluid as it is readily available in 99 cents stores, and I think stamps should not carry smells, even nice ones, but that is just personal preference. I don't collect self-adhesives or moderns, but I did help a youngster get some off.

  10. kacyds

    kacyds New Member

    I let the stamps air dry for a day or so, and the smell is completely gone. I deal with the lighter fluid when I watermark stamps, and I hate the smell.:eek: I only do that outside.....:D
  11. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    I started using a light table for watermarks. They are usually used for tracing images and decals in art stuffs. No smell at all!
  12. West

    West New Member

    I went to a stamp show yesterday and there were quite a few stamps stuck on post cards and envelopes.
    So, my question is when do you know which stamps to remove from them and which to leave on?
  13. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    If it's an old stamp or from the classic period OR if a self adhesive I'll just leave it on the envelope or postal card (on cover). That's my rules but yours may differ. It's up to you really?
  14. West

    West New Member

    I am just collecting new at the moment but am finding it increasing difficult to resist second hand as the fayre had some nice ones and the dealers told me that they can be worth 'more' than new ones some times.
    Only trouble is, if they are on envelopes or post cards, how do they fit in your stockbook, or do you cut them down a bit?
  15. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    I know folks do it different ways but I store my covers (envelopes with stamps on them) in a plain old shoe box! Works like a champ. Stamps are normally valued higher when left on cover than cut off. If they are the new self adhesive stamps and you feel you absolutely have to trim them off then try to leave a nice uniform margin around all 4 sides if possible. presentation is everything! Think to yourself "Would you buy an ugly looking stamp for your collection"?
  16. West

    West New Member

    .......and the brilliance of this system is that you have to buy new shoes to acquire more shoe boxes!!!!
    Jay likes this.
  17. Koen

    Koen Member

    my bigest problem is to soak self adhesives.
    1 out of 3 self adhesives i soak end up ripped.

    going to try the ruler on them to get the gum off, hope that that works, so thx for the tip ;)
  18. Jay

    Jay Well-Known Member

    here try this- it works every time!
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