Assessing and conserving historic aluminum doors at the Federal Trade Commission

15 Sep

The Federal Trade Commission Building dates from 1937 and is in the Classical Revival style. Contrasting with the limestone walls, some of its distinctive exterior features are the aluminum grilles over the main entrance doors. They are decorated with images of the changing transportation methods used over time, from Columbus’s 14th century ships to the more modern seaplane. Whilst McKay Lodge Conservation is conserving the grilles, Aeon is providing a local conservation management service under them to assess and conserve the 28 glass and aluminum doors.

Aeon has begun work with Independent Custom Metalworks of Bladensburg, to carefully dismantle the sets of doors and install temporary entrances. Back at ICM’s shop, the physical damage to each door is repaired and the surface smoothed using micro-abrasive peening. The luster and color is then restored by reanodizing. All the remaining hardware is then meticulously restored and re-chromed and the doors are reinstalled on new replica hinges. So far, five of the doors have been completed

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