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1939 Dietz Monarch Molasses Treatment

Started by david@london, June 15, 2020, 01:20:37 PM

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Another nice Dietz find, a Monarch hot blast lantern stamped S-4-39 on its centre air tube - Syracuse, NY factory, April 1939.
The seller accepted £25.00 - I asked him where he had got it, thinking perhaps he'd say an old barn in Kansas or similar. An Auto Jumble at Ardingly Showground in the south of England, in fact.

This lantern was really rusted, so took a lot of time soaking in Grandma's molasses & water before the chelating process could do its magic - about 3 weeks in total.
When the warm weather arrived a couple of weeks ago, the outline of the lantern was suddenly visible in the mix, in bubbles.

Used a packet & a half of Brillo pads - about 9 hours of cleaning.
Finished off with a soapy soft brass bristle suede-cleaning brush for tricky corners. Went over it with an electric toothbrush dipped in Brasso to remove flash rust, a polish with a cotton cloth, then some hours later a coat of boiled linseed oil mixed with white (mineral) spirit (25%-75%).
That coating seemed to just disappear into the metal surface and dried in minutes, so it has had 2 further BLO/spirit coats.

One of the small brass clips holding the vertical side wire was loose & came off - need to solder that back in place.

The red glass globe is a replacement but an older one I believe.
Perhaps the original was broken when the dent on the lower rim happened, sometime in the last 81 years ....

And again, thanks John for the help, encouragement, tips & lots of great info!




You found a red one! Brilliant.

That cleaned up nice now you've done the 'Molasses Magic' to it.

They look good together.  :)
A collector of  'Monochrome Phones with Sepia Tones'   ...and a Duck!
Vintage Phones - 10% man made, 90% Tribble


Nice work. That came out great!
Harry Smith
ATCA 4434

"There is no try,
there is only
do or do not"


Thanks guys.
It is a remarkable procedure, the molasses soak.

I do like the red glass ....


The picture of the outline in bubbles is awesome and it's the final proof that "something is going on" there...
Do you know if that is molasses from sugar cane or sugar beet?



yes I was pretty astounded to see the entire lantern outlined in white bubbles.
By the next day, there was alot more bubble action going on & so the image was not as clear.

The molasses I used, Grandma's, is described as:

Sulfured molasses is made from immature green sugarcane that is treated with sulfur fumes during the sugar extracting process, whereas Grandma's unsulfured molasses is made of the finest quality pure unsulfured juice of sun-ripened sugarcane.


Thanks. It seems the stuff would be available here, just in case I needed it  :)
I'm always interested in restoration techniques.


Very nice, the finished piece look awesome! The picture of the lantern soaking with the bubbles is very interesting. Good job.