Professional dedusting books and documents

We carry out each dusting activity with the utmost respect, thanks to a 20-year expertise in the treatment of ancient and delicate books.

RGI bioSteryl Tech

An engineering company specialized in consultancy, services and sales of certified products for the protection of cultural heritage.

Professional dedusting books and documents

Dedusting books, works of art and documents is a delicate and necessary activity which requires great skill and care. We carry out each dusting activity with the utmost respect, thanks to a 20-year expertise in the treatment of ancient and delicate books without jeopardizing the safety of the books and documents.

Professional dusting means prevention

Dusting is an indispensable practice for the proper conservation of the library heritage and a preventive action that can’t be improvised, but must be carried out by professional operators. Planning professional dusting interventions at a scheduled frequency provides the best conservation results on the bibliographic and archival heritage.

A high percentage of the damage caused to books and documents is directly or indirectly caused by human inexperience, as many professionals know; books and works of art are often damaged during moving or handling.

For this very reason we carry out the dusting activities on site, avoiding moving antique and valuable materials as much as possible.

Dusting is also the preliminary step for disinfection work (link interno a disinfezione) when microbiological infestations (mould) are present.

The harm of the dust: a dangerous mix for conservation in archives and libraries

When it comes to dust, people often think of it as something annoying, yet harmless. While, the dust contains deterioration factors stemming from the various components of books: carbon monoxide, sulphur and nitrogen gases, ash, soot, tar particles, sulphuric acid; in addition, bacterial, fungal spores and insect eggs often lurk in the dust, a further threat to volumes.

A dangerous mix for the correct conservation of valuable books, but also highly harmful for employees in museums, archives and libraries, given the possible presence of pests such as mites.

During dusting intervention, one can run the risk of spreading dust, mould and fungal spores in the library or archives premises. In order to reduce the dispersion of these elements into the environment, we only and exclusively work with vacuum cleaners equipped with HEPA filters with a high level of filtration.

Dusting methodologies for books and archival materials

In our projects, we propose different dusting methodologies depending on several parameters such as the history of previous interventions, the state of preservation and the type of dust and biological contaminants.

 1.External dusting with manual vacuum cleaners

External dusting should be carried out regularly about every 4 to 5 years, depending on the amount of dust present in the conservation premises and the size of the library or archive, as recommended by ICRPAL. (link esterno

External dusting with manual vacuum cleaners involves the use of machines equipped with HEPA filters, with suction power adjustment and brushes suited to the kind of materials involved. This method achieves an excellent level of cleanliness of the paper materials as the greatest amount of dust is usually concentrated on the outside of the volumes. Even in the case of mould, the proliferation generally always starts on the outside of the volumes, unless it sometimes spreads to the inside of the paper supports.

External dusting, together with ideal climatic conditions, guarantees an excellent preservation state.

 2.External dusting with manual vacuum cleaners, special cloths and brushes

This special dedusting methodology is highly recommended when volumes show persistent dust or when it’s necessary to intervene locally on damaged materials. The combined action of manual dedusting with HEPA-filtered vacuum cleaners, brushes and microfibre cloths remove even the most difficult dirt, always providing a safe, delicate and non-invasive operation.

Dust-extractor fan

We employ the highest level of dust-extractor fan characterized by a micro-perforated suction work surface that can be isolated from the outside environment and equipped with two Nilfisk suction units for professional use.

Special access vents with sleeves for inserting the operator’s arms so as to allow better to isolate the object with respect to the environment outside the fan.
Using the dust-extractor fan we carry out dusting and mould removal operations and drastically reduce the risk of spreading fungal spores and dust.
Compared to other methodologies, the dust-extractor fan results in longer service time

Dusting of the parts

External dusting

External dusting includes the dusting of plates, spines and cuts of the books, as well as the equivalents in media like folders, files or even loose sheets.  In particular, when paper material is unbound, dusting includes the dusting of every visible surface outside the item. When it comes to folders, binders or the likes the external dedusting doesn’t include the opening of the item dusted.

Additional dusting of the back of the plates

When books are extremely dusty or have gone through a bug attack which leaves behind the typical traces of erosion, we suggest an additional dusting of the back of the plates ( the back of the covers, when present) which keeps costs down compared to a page-by-page dedusting while assuring excellent results.

As for registers or folders, the additional dusting involves the opening of the container and the dusting execution on the front and back surfaces: in this case the further stripping of the pages or their equivalent it’s not included as well as the sheets gathered inside the folders; only visible surfaces will be dusted.

Page-by-page dusting

It’s a delicate job which requires a meticulous attention. Page-by-page dusting includes the external dedusting and dusting of  all the pages of the book, without taking them apart.

Combined disinfection and dusting

Disinfection(link interno a pagina Disinfection)  is highly recommended on books threatened by fungal attack: we carry out a delicate buffering  with the help of specific disinfection products, such as products based on quaternary ammonium salts, also used in hospital disinfection.

Disinfection interventions include dusting of the paper materials to be disinfected

Why choosing  RGI for professional dusting service?

  • Prearranged inspection and analysis
  • Detailed design of the intervention
  • Specialization in the field of cultural heritage
  • Maximum effectiveness at low costs
  • Optional patented ABIOS system
  • Unconditional respect for the environment and works

Preserve your heritage and hand it down with our experience