Lead Foil

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Robare M. Novou
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Location: Milwaukee
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Lead Foil

Post by Robare M. Novou » Wed Jul 28, 2004 12:41 pm

Looking for some information on lead foil. I know that it can still be purchased, here locally and over the internet.

I read and have seen that it is applied to the back of glass signs.

Im told that this is for protective reasons.

Any thoughts some of you in the know might have about this would be appreciated.

Thanks, and also a big thanks for the info on train car lettering.

RMN

Patrick Mackle
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Applying lead foil to glass.

Post by Patrick Mackle » Thu Jul 29, 2004 7:16 pm

What I know about applying lead foil to glass.
Lead foil was originally applied to glass that was to be acid etched. The glass was first painted with asphaltum or embossers black, also referred to as Brunswick black. After the material dried, it was rubbed with a sort of wax block. This wax block was like a large chunk of colorless Crayon. It was made by heating bees wax and adding an amount of animal tallow or rendered animal fat. This block leaves an even waxy coating on the asphaltum without damaging that coating. The thin lead foil was then applied and burnished, the waxy layer acting as the adhesive. Then the design to be acid etched was imparted onto the foil. The designed lead foil was then cut with a steel blade and removed revealing the waxed and tarred layer underneath. A cloth wetted with mineral spirits was then employed the remove the blackish layer from the revealed areas. The lead foil acting like a protective stencil. Once the revealed glass was properly cleaned, the foiled panel was leveled flat, dammed up and the first etching mixture poured onto it.
Undoubtly it was noticed that unfinished or delayed panels retained the foiled process without bubbling or breaking down after substantual periods of time. This could have been the inspiration to apply this foil application to protect painted glass signage enabling it to better weather the elements.
In searching for lead foil, which can be a little difficult, I found it plentiful as a sound deadening material. Rolls of thin lead foil are applied to the wooden studs before the sheetrock is applied to deaden sound in office areas where forklifts and loud machinery share close quarters.
After practicing the old lead foiling process for a few years, I found out that, tradition aside, certain sign vynals stick equally well and with much less preparation.
Pat

Doug Bernhardt
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Post by Doug Bernhardt » Sun Aug 01, 2004 5:26 am

I have a photo of Dave Smith using this technique. Will find it and forward to Mike. A picture is worth.....

Chris Owen
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Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2004 4:27 pm

lead foil

Post by Chris Owen » Sun Aug 01, 2004 4:15 pm

Would this work? It could probably obtained in wider rolls from the manufacturer - before he cuts it into 3" sections.

http://www.lmine.com/cgi-bin/plugins/Mi ... ode=183111

Robare M. Novou
Posts: 415
Joined: Thu May 06, 2004 11:18 am
Location: Milwaukee
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Lead Foil

Post by Robare M. Novou » Sun Aug 01, 2004 10:12 pm

I found some 14" wide at this site:

www.rpicorp.com

the thickness in inches vary, .006, .015, .030.

I am wondering what thickness is needed for glass signs.

RMN

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