Preservation of Vintage Boxes

I recently acquired a HP-91 box to match with the calculator and manual I have. The base of the box is not split, but the all 4 corners of the top are and some edges along the top are splitting.

Does anyone have experience preserving these? I know I could just tape the insides, but seems like a rough approach. These appear to be held together from the graphics paper, so to really "restore", I would need to pull this back to apply some type of tape.



"restoration" is not desirable. More desirable is to simply prevent further damage. Put the box inside a cushioned box, or inside a plexiglas box for display (and a sun shield when not viewing it).

Keep the calculator separate.

All tape degrades with time and doesn't restore--rather it is an ugly defect and non-original.

Edited: 18 Jan 2012, 8:36 p.m.


Why wouldn't you recommend keeping the calculator inside the box?

All ni-cads have been removed to prevent leakage.


Because when you want to pull out the calculator to look at it, play with it, power it up to keep the caps "fresh" etc you would have to touch the box...


I've dealt a bit with this and had great success with white paper glue. Often I come across a split corner where somebody has taped it and the tape is yellow or peeling off and doing more damage to the artwork. If you can lift the tape off carefully without damaging the graphics, you can usually get a decent result. The glue holds very well, better than the tape if you can keep the corners mated tight while the glue dries. The glue doesn't show when dry unless you use too much and make a mess of it. I’ve had near perfect results on some occasions and the boxes hold up to regular wear & tear, much better than tape. I’m pretty sure you can get some favorable results. I studied this a bit on the net with some research on restoring antique box art. The next step if you are very serious is to touch up with paint that you match but I’ve not had to do that with any of mine so far. Good luck!

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