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Non-solvent removal of aged pressure-sensitive tape from rare 1970' Skywalker paper box with solvent sensitive print

Another pressing concern for paper conservators is the removal of aged, pressure-sensitive tape that can be challenging when the substrate is sensitive to solvents. In this case, the pressure-sensitive tape was removed from the surface of a collectible 1970 “Star Wars” Luke Skywalker paper box. The printing ink was sensitive to solvents and the heat spatula was ineffective, as steady, low-temperature heat transfer was required during the entire tape removal process. The solution was found by placing the mat under the paper substrate. At 38C the adhesive softened enough to allow for a gradual tape removal under the microscope.