New Tool! The Finger for Conservation

The Finger

The Finger® in use conserving a plate from C. Collodi’s Pinocchio, Gift Edition, 1920.

Many conservators, in a variety of specialities, like to make their own tools.  However this can be time consuming and distract the dedicated conservation professional from the more necessary tasks of endless paperwork. Last year, I introduced the now ubiquitous SPIT™. After a year of making prototypes and incorporating suggestions from testers, I feel I have finally perfected a new essential tool: The Finger®.  

The idea came to me late one night when I was using a Yad to read my Torah, and I’m not even Jewish.  The small size of the finger, and more importantly finger nail, would be ideal for the mechanical removal of surface accretions. FIngernails have an ideal flexibility and hardness. But a regular fingernail is often much too large for the types of delicate paperwork that conservators generally engage in, and is inconveniently attached to the extreme outer ends of our fingers. The Finger® is a delicate and versatile tool for use on the most sensitive of substrates.  It has a pleasing weight and a gentle warmth, and will pay for itself after the first successful treatment. Above all, it will be a constant reminder that the conservator is subservient to the objects of cultural heritage that we treat.

The Finger® is made from hand carved swiss pear wood, 6″ (152mm) long and .6″ (15mm) wide at the palm. .25 oz (7 g). The nail is replaceable, contact me for current prices, though there is often a three month delay while I grow a new one of adequate length.

THE FINGER® (ITEM# FU) $495.00

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