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Yet another Rubberset restoration (but probably not the model you're thinking)

This Rubberset 600N was an eBay acquisition that I bought mostly because I’m a sucker for Lucite handles of just about any stripe. This one has a metal collar that appeared from the eBay photos to be in pretty rough condition; I really wasn’t confident that I would be able to pretty it up. The Lucite portion of the handle was fairly pristine aside from minor scratches and an internal blemish on the bottom edge (likely the result of having been dropped). I have a handful of vintage brushes with perfectly serviceable knots, and I use them. With this brush, though, I knew from the outset that the Nylon knot would have to be replaced. Here are the “before” photos:

$RS600N A.jpg $RS600N B.jpg

The restoration followed the usual procedures that are well documented in this sub-forum: cut off the bristles, drilled out the knot, dry and wet sanded (800, 1000, 1500, 2000, 2500 grits), polished with Meguiar’s Plast-X and buffed with a microfiber cloth. I finished with a light buffing using a Dremel with a cloth wheel.

I was mildly surprised to discover that the metal collar was made of cast aluminum, not unlike the Rubberset 400, just a smaller version. The collar is threaded internally (not functional on this handle), that may suggest it was used by Rubberset on other models. In any event, the Nylon knot was glued directly to the top of the Lucite portion of the handle that had been painted a brassy gold color. I scuffed it up some in removing the knot and decided to repaint it red. I used sandpaper to remove the old paint and prepare the surface for new paint. Given the close quarters inside the collar, I resorted to using the eraser end of a pencil to work small pieces of sandpaper over the area. Once I got the hang of it, that process went pretty quickly. To ensure good coverage, I put down three relatively heavy coats of red enamel.

The lettering on the bottom of the handle was of even depth and in good condition. I used Gigster’s method (http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showthread.php/307591-Techniques-to-painting-numbers-and-letters) and decided to go with black. Thanks, Gigster! :thumbup1:

For the replacement knot, since the opening of the collar is just less than 22mm, I chose a 20mm TGN Finest in the shortest height available, which as of a week or so ago was 55mm. The shorter the better, I figured, as the “shelf” was pretty shallow. While I could have drilled into the Lucite, I didn’t want to expose the knot below the bottom of the collar, purely for aesthetics. As it turned out, this resulted in a loft of 51mm.

Here are the “after” photos:

$RS600N C.jpg $RS600N D.jpg $RS600N E.jpg

I’m very pleased with the result. The completed restoration exceeded my expectations by far, and I’m eager to try it out. :biggrin1:
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