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Патент USA US3062755

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3,062,749
United “States Patent O?ice
Patented Nov. 6, 1962
1
2
3,062,749
solutions with water-soluble primary lower aliphatic alco<
hols, such as methyl, ethyl, n-propyl and isopropyl alco
Robert F. Herr-ling, 1111 S. Ridge Road, Lake Forest, Ill.
hol, and which alcoholic solutions are in turn soluble in
water to the extent of from one to four teaspoons per
COMPOSITION AND METHOD FOR REMOVING
POSTAGE STAMPS
No Drawing. Filed Sept. 2, 1958, Ser. No. 758,546
2 Claims. ((11. 252-—l70)
This invention relates to compositions for loosening the
quart of water. The following agents are illustrative of
nonionic surface active agents that have been found suit
able.
Alkyl aryl polyether alcohols such as p-isooctyl phenyl
adhesive bond between paper and another material to
ether of polyethylene glycol containing 58.1% by weight
which the paper has been ?rmly bonded with an adhesive 10 of combined ethylene oxide (made and sold under the
and the adhesive has been ?rmly set, and more particu
larly to a novel composition for readily achieving this
trade name Triton X-lOO by Rohm and Haas), and
purpose and to the method of accomplishing this purpose.
Numerous attempts have been made to provide means
Polyoxycthylene sorbitan monolaurate (made and sold
under the trade name Tween 20 by Atlas Powder Co.).
others such as Triton X-102 and Triton X-1l4.
for removing postage stamps from envelopes without im
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monoleate (made and sold
pairing the quaiity of the stamps. Various compositions
under the trade names Tween 80 and Tween 81 by Atlas
have been proposed which contain solvents, wetting agents
Powder Co.).
and penetrating agents for achieving this purpose. In
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monopalmitate (Tween 40').
each instance the result thas been less than satisfactory.
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monostearate, (Tween 60 and
Some of the procedures require substantial periods of 20 Tween 61).
time to effect the result and-give rise to deterioration of
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan tristearate (Tween 65) and
the stamps, for example folding or bleeding of colors. in
polyoxyethylene sorbitan trioleate (Tween 85).
some instances, solid residues are deposited on the stamps
.
.
and the quality of the stamps-in the opinion of'expert
Aromatic polyglycol‘ ether condensate made and sold
under the trade name Neutronyx 600 by Onyx Oil and
stamp collectors is seriously reduced. Stamps that have 25
Chemical Co.).
the original gum on the back are frequently valued at
two to three times or more over the value of the same
Polyoxyethylene thioethers made and sold under the
trade names Sterox SE and Sterox SK by Monsanto Chem
stamps from which the original gum has been removed.
ical Company. '
_
A common practice is to place the paper section to which
Alkyl phenoxy polyoxyethylene ethanol made and sold
a stamp is bonded by its adhesive in a stamp lift, which 30 under the trade name Igepal CA-630 by Antara Chemi
cals Div. of General Dyestuff Corp.
is essentially a box-like enclosure in which the stamps
can be exposed to a very moist atmosphere without rest
inasmuch as the value of certain postage stamps to a
ing in water. The time required to “lift” the stamp from
the paper ranges from one-half hour to several days.
phiiatelist may be very great, and the value of such stamps
depend upon the care and handling involved, it becomes
While some of the adhesive may remain on the stamp 35 of substantial importance to avoid any treatment of
after this procedure, there is a tendency for the colors
a valuable stamp that will impair its value to a collector.
in the stamp to fade, run or bleed during the prolonged
Care must be taken that the stamp does not shrink or
exposure to moisture. Moreover, in many instances some
become elongated when removed from a paper backing.
of the gum is lost after this procedure. Steaming removes
The colors must not be “impaired and the paper back
40 ing must not exfoliate or delaminate. The original ad
substantially all of the gum or adhesive.
One of the objects of the present invention is to pro
hesive must remain intact on the stamp. It has been
vide a novel composition which when properly diluted
found that the proportions of components in the novel
with water will remove postage stamps from paper
backings leaving the gum on the back of the stamps,
telic standpoint.
composition of this invention are quite critical. For ex
ample, the ratio of nonionic surface active agent to al
cohol must be in the range of 3 to 4 parts by volume of
surface active agent to 1 part of alcohol. During use,
I A further object is to provide a novel method for
this composition must be diluted with luke warm water
without affecting the quality of the stamp from a phila
rapidly removing postage stamps from paper backings
‘(approximately 75-90“ F.) in the ratio of 1 to 3 parts
leaving the gum on the back of thestamp, without im
by volume of the composition to 192 parts by volume
pairing the quality of the stamp from a philatelic stand 50 of water. Ultimate concentrations below this range give
point.
>
Other objects will become apparent from the following
description and examples. I
rise to difficulty in removing the stamps from the paper
backings and concomitant stretching and damage to the
stamp, as well as loss of a portion of the .adhesive. Con
centrationsvabove this range give rise to exfoliation or
According to the present invention, generally stated, a
composition for the loosening of a water-adhesive bond
delamination of the paper backing, resulting in a defective
removal of the backing and the likelihood of damage to
between postage. stamps and paper backings without im
the stamp when efforts are made to remove the residues
pairment of the quality of the stamp from a philatelic
of paper ?ber therefrom. In the interest of achieving
standpoint is provided by preparing a solution of certain
the very best results, the preferred proportion is 1 part
nonionic surface active agents in water-soluble primary
lower aliphatic alcohols. The proportion'of nonionic 60 of the composition to 192 parts of water. If the water
employed is quite hard, a few more drops of the composi~
surface active agent to alcohol is found to be quite criti
tion may be added. The proportions of surface active
cal. Such compositions when added in certain critical
agent to alcohol are also critical. Below the ratio of 3
proportions to lukewarm'water (approximately 80-85 °
parts
of surfaceactive agent to 1 part of alcohol, the ac
F.) are useful for removing postage stamps from paper
backings or for separating paper sheets that have been 65 tion of the composition when diluted to 1 part of com
position by volume to 192 parts of water is for too slow.
bonded with water-soluble. adhesives such as gums and
Above the ratio of 4 parts of surface active agent to‘ l
mucilages. Such compositions are also useful when prop
partby volume of alcohol, the action is exceedingly fast
erly diluted with water for the loosening of wall paper
but there is a tendency for the removed stamp to have an
from plaster walls or ceilings.
70 oily feeling, which is undesirable. The best results are
1e nonionic surface active agents found useful for the
purposes of the present invention are those which form
achieved when the ratio of surface active agent to alco
hol is 3 to 1.
sheaves
4
Example V
3
The composition of the present invention is used in
the following manner. One teaspoonful (1/6 fl. oz.) of
the concentrate is dissolved in one quart (32 ?. oz.) of
Parts by volume
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monopalmitate (Tween 40) __ 4
luke warm water (75-90° F.). If the stamps to be
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ __ 1
removed are on white paper or cardboard backing, the
Example VI
p-Isooctyl phenyl ether of polyethylene glycol (Triton
entire stamp may be immersed in the solution. In ap
proximately 20 seconds, the stamps are loosened and can
be separated from the backing without injury to the
X-lOO) ___________________________________ __ 3
stamps. The immersion procedure does not retain the
adhesive on the stamp but is useful when it is desired
to remove large numbers of stamps from backings in a
short period of time. If the stamps are on colored back
ings, the solution may be applied with a gentle patting
action to the face of the stamp, for example with a small
sponge, and the stamp will be loosened in approximately
20 seconds and can be easily lifted off of the paper back
ing. The stamps are then rinsed in clean water and
Methyl alcohol _______________________________ __ 1
dried.
Example VII
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monostearate (Tween 60) __- 3
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ __ 1
Example Vlll
Aromatic polyglycol ether condensate (Neutronyx
600) _____________________________________ __ 3
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ __ 1
When it is desired to preserve the gum or adhesive
on the stamp (for example an unused stamp), the solu
tion is gently patted on the paper backing (not on the
Example IX
stamp itself). After the solution has soaked through,
the stamp may be lifted gently from the backing with gum
intact. Soiled stamps may be cleaned by patting the
Polyoxyethylene thioether (Sterox SE) ___________ __ 3
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ _- 1
Example X
Alkyl phenoxy polyoxyethylene ethanol (lgepal CA
stamp gently with a small sponge that has been immersed
in the solution. Care should be taken not to rub the
stamp. Stamps removed by the procedures described
630)
retain .the fresh appearance that prolonged soaking de
stroys.
Increasing the quantity of the composition of this in
____________________________________ ..- 3
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ __ 1
Others may practice the invention in any of the nu
vention in the aqueous solution from one teaspoonful 30 merous ways which will be suggested to one skilled in the
of the composition per quart of water at 90° F. to two
art upon a reading of this speci?cation. It is intended
teaspoonfuls reduces the time for immersion to loosen
that all such practice of the invention be included here
the stamp from approximately 20 seconds to approximate
ly 10 seconds, and the time for loosening the stamp by
patting the solution on the backing from approximately
20 seconds to approximately 15 seconds. Further in
under, provided it falls within the scope of the appended
crease to 3 teaspoonfuls reduces the time for immersion
paper backings to remove the postage stamps without
impairment of the quality of the stamps consisting es
to approximately 5 seconds and the time for loosening
the stamp by patting on the backing to approximately 10
seconds. A comparison test with water alone at 90°
F. required over 5 minutes to loosen the stamp by im
mersion and over 10 minutes to loosen the stamp by
patting the water on the backing. The stamps treated
with water alone were inferior in quality to similar stamps
removed with the composition of this invention by the
procedures described herein.
Formulae which have proved to be satisfactory for
claims.
I claim:
1. A solution for the treatment of postage stamps on
sentially of an aqueous solution of a composition com
posed of 3—4 parts by volume of p-isooctyl phenyl ether
of polyethylene glycol and one part by volume of iso
propyl alcohol, said composition being present in said
aqueous solution in the proportion of 1-3 parts by volume
~ of said composition to 192 parts by volume of water, said
solution at a temperature in the range of 75-900 F. when
sparsely applied to the paper backing being capable of
retaining the adhesive on the stamp when the backing is
removed.
2. A method of removing postage stamps from paper
backings with retention of the adhesive on the stamp and
the removal of stamps from paper backings are as fol
lows. In each instance, from one to three teaspoonfuls
of the composition shown are dissolved in one quart of
water at a temperature in the range of 75—90° F. (yield
ing a ratio of one part of the composition per 192 parts
of water).
Example I
without impairment of the quality of the stamp consisting
of applying sparsely to the back side of the paper back
ing an aqueous solution of a composition composed of
> 3—4 parts by volume of p-isooctyl phenyl ether of poly
ethylene glycol and one part by volume of isopropyl al
cohol, said composition being present in said aqueous
solution in the proportion of 1-3 parts by volume of
said composition to 192 parts by volume of water, and
Parts by volume
p-Isooctyl phenyl ether of polyethylene glycol (Triton
X-lOO)
____ __ 3
Isopropyl alcohol .._
_
1
(30 said solution being at a temperature in the range of
Example I!
75~90° F.
p-Isooctyl phenyl ether of polyethylene glycol (Triton
References Cited in the ?le of this patent
X-lOO) ___________________________________ __ 4
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ __ 1
UNITED STATES PATENTS
Example 111
1,970,578
Schoeller et al _________ __ Aug. 21, 1934
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monolaurate (Tween 20) ___ 3
2,067,327
Leatherman __________ __ Jan. 12, 1937
Isopropyl alcohol _____________________________ __ l
2,317,505
2,356,254
Wassell _____________ __ Apr. 27, 1943
Lehmann ____________ __ Aug. 22, 1944
2,831,315
Klisch ______________ __ Apr. 22, I958
_>
‘
Example IV
3
’
Polyoxyethylene sorbitan monooleate (Tween 80) _.._ 3.5
Isopropyl alcohol _..,____,_,,___,___,_,e__,, ______ __
1
70
FOREIGN PATENTS
697,315 ‘
Great Britain _________ __ Sept. 23, 1953
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