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Topic: Ketchup stains

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Subject: Ketchup stains
Date Posted: 7/12/2011 9:15 PM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2008
Posts: 25,304
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I have a dilemna.....one of my grandson's dropped a packet of ketchup on the floor in my bedroom.  He was moving some books from the dining room table, and I'm guessing that the ketchup packet just came along for the ride!  Anyway, I didn't notice it.   I stepped on it and it splattered on the edges of about 20 WL books.

Does anyone have a clue how I might be able to get the stains off the edges of the books without causing further damage?

Date Posted: 7/12/2011 10:09 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,235
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Let it dry, and sandpaper it off.

Squeeze the edges of the pages together (leave the front and back cover outside of your fingers) and just sand off the spot.

I know it sounds like it would tear up the edges of the paper, but honestly, on most books you will not even be able to tell at all.

Date Posted: 7/12/2011 10:29 PM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2008
Posts: 25,304
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Thanks Sara - I'll try that!  The only thing I could think of was to use a detergent like Tide to Go, or bleach.  I was afraid that I would just end up with liquid damage on the edges!  

Date Posted: 7/13/2011 3:29 PM ET
Member Since: 10/1/2006
Posts: 846
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I've had good luck getting dirt smudges off with a gum eraser (the kind from the art store). Don't know about ketchup though. Let us know if anything works!

Last Edited on: 7/14/11 8:48 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/13/2011 3:50 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2005
Posts: 1,328
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Ketchup is a tough one. I use sandpaper and I've also used a dry Mr. Clean Magic Sponge to remove surface marks. Once it seeps into the page, it's hard to remove them.

Subject: another solution
Date Posted: 7/13/2011 4:31 PM ET
Member Since: 9/22/2010
Posts: 3,635
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If any of them are vampire novels you could just claim it was blood, thereby enhancing the value of the book.

Date Posted: 7/13/2011 11:35 PM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2008
Posts: 25,304
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LOL Thomas!!!!  I like that!  

Actually, most of them are either PnR or UF, so the blood thing might just work!

Date Posted: 7/14/2011 2:57 AM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
Posts: 3,041
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If you're not able to get the stains out, then you can always offer them up for 1 credit each in the unpostables thread in the Book Bazaar. I've had success unloading slightly damaged books there and getting credits for them.

If sanding did work for you, check on the inside of the book too just to make sure that none of the stains affects that. If it does, then you don't want to post them.