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Old 11-18-2007, 09:30 AM   #1
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Default Why clean stamps?

Seems like everyone I know spends a lot of time, energy, effort and, yes, money trying to make their stamps look like they've never been used. I personally think there's something lovely about a stamp that has that well-used, deeply-loved appearance.

We know that ink stains on a stamp do not affect the stamped image. I have better things to do than wash stamps. Is there a reason, other than esthetic preference, to clean stamps so thoroughly?

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Old 11-18-2007, 09:40 AM   #2
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I don't clean my stamps usually - but there comes a time that it does need to be done somewhat. I have one stamp that I've used quite a bit now with Stazon ink, and you can see the ink build up in the small section of the rubber -so it does build up more over time depending on what kind of ink you use..

Also cleaning your stamps also condition the rubber. I'm more afraid of my rubber drying and cracking than afraid of a little ink...

I also do clean my stamps after use with polymer clay and pigment ink.. pigmet ink has broken down a few of my stamps in the past after neglecting them after use.. so it depends on the type of stamp, what it's made out of and what kind of ink you use on it...
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Old 11-18-2007, 09:50 AM   #3
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Other than the fact that I like them clean, it allows me stamp images with light ink, and it keeps me from getting stamped images in random places.
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Old 11-18-2007, 11:03 AM   #4
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I just clean mine to the point where they won't stain when I use them again. I know when I love a stamp because it tends to have some staining nothing excessive but it's defiantly been used. It seems to be a difference in personal preference.
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Old 11-18-2007, 12:48 PM   #5
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Quote:

Originally Posted by CicicaraView Post
Seems like everyone I know spends a lot of time, energy, effort and, yes, money trying to make their stamps look like they've never been used. I personally think there's something lovely about a stamp that has that well-used, deeply-loved appearance.

We know that ink stains on a stamp do not affect the stamped image. I have better things to do than wash stamps. Is there a reason, other than esthetic preference, to clean stamps so thoroughly?

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Clean rubber = clean impression.

I clean the rubber thoroughly because I don't want cross-contamination in my ink pads, or on my projects. And, if there are chunks of pigment ink, or glitter/fuzz, stuck in the nooks and crannies of an image, it can cause a less than superior impression to the paper.

The mounts aren't used for impressions, nor do I display my stamps for decorative purposes, so I don't get **** retentive about the mounts being pristine . . .
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Old 11-18-2007, 12:54 PM   #6
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Quote:

Originally Posted by CicicaraView Post
Seems like everyone I know spends a lot of time, energy, effort and, yes, money trying to make their stamps look like they've never been used. I personally think there's something lovely about a stamp that has that well-used, deeply-loved appearance.

We know that ink stains on a stamp do not affect the stamped image. I have better things to do than wash stamps. Is there a reason, other than esthetic preference, to clean stamps so thoroughly?

Leslie
Three reasons you clean stamps: get rid of ink clugging up the die in highly detailed images; left-over ink on a die affects the color of new ink placed on the stamp; solvent-based inks will damage stamps if not removed.

Photo-type stamps must be cleaned after each use...or the stamped image wouldn'g be much of an image. Nothing worse when old black ink on a die turns newly applied white ink to a grungy grey. Solvent-based inks contain alcohol, so those inks should be removed shortly after stamping.

If you're a neat freak, your stamps are pristine. If you're not (like me!), you've got a stack of stained, grungy stamps that get cleaned only when absolutely necessary.

I've used KissOff since I started stamping (almost 16 years ago)...KO, water and an battery powdered toothbrush handle things for me. I do wipe off excess ink soon as I'm finished with a stamp...just to keep the gunk down to a reasonable amount til I do 'real' cleaning.
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Old 11-18-2007, 02:32 PM   #7
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I don't care if the rubber is stained - I only care if it's clean enough that it doesn't leave behind the old color after I clean it. I've received a few stamps in trades that were truly "gunked up". I got one of the plaid background stamps - Stipple Plaid, I believe - and it had been used with some metallic ink and not cleaned well at all. It took me about two hours with a blunt-tipped tapestry needle to get all of the crud out of it. It sure did look beautiful afterwards!
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Old 11-18-2007, 02:48 PM   #8
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I am sorry but I am one of those people that clean my stamps after every use. It takes two seconds to spray stampin mist to the stampin up cleaner pad and rub the stamp clean and dry it on the other side. Yes my stamps then always look like new and I like it that way.
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Old 11-18-2007, 03:02 PM   #9
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Clean stamps.....for dummies like me that like clean rubber
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Old 11-18-2007, 05:48 PM   #10
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If I stamped everything in black ink, cleaning the stamps would not be a big issue. Since I DO use my stamps for colors other than black, it's absolutely necessary to have clean rubber so that the ink color I'm stamping isn't distorted by remainder ink on the stamp - yuck!

Another reason to immediately clean a stamp after using it is then it won't leave ink smudges on your stamping surface that can easily transfer to a project that you are working on. Yuck again!

I don't worry about ink on the wood, it's just a sign that a stamp has been well used.
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Old 11-18-2007, 05:53 PM   #11
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Stampinmom57View Post
I am sorry but I am one of those people that clean my stamps after every use. It takes two seconds to spray stampin mist to the stampin up cleaner pad and rub the stamp clean and dry it on the other side. Yes my stamps then always look like new and I like it that way.
me too. though, some of my wood blocks are stained. but the rubber itself is still good as new.
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Old 11-18-2007, 06:14 PM   #12
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I clean mine 80% of the time. But I always look before I stamp.
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Old 11-18-2007, 06:43 PM   #13
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I clean my stamps, but not always right away. I mainly clean them because I don't want my lighter inks to get "contaminated". I don't mind stains on the wood. It gives 'em character!
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Old 11-18-2007, 11:05 PM   #14
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I clean mine for 2 reasons, I want clean images next time and I pay a nice price for my stamps so I dont want them looking all inked up and sloppy.
Guess its all in the person how you take care of your stamps. Everyone is different.
((Smiles))
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Old 11-20-2007, 06:25 PM   #15
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I'm convinced! I really, really wanted to get by without all that cleaning. But today I put a stamp I thought I'd cleaned pretty well into my new white Stazon. I'll be darned, there were gray spots on the white pad! Guess I'll have to get more serious about cleaning them. They are my good friends, after all.

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Old 11-20-2007, 07:32 PM   #16
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Stampinmom57View Post
I am sorry but I am one of those people that clean my stamps after every use. It takes two seconds to spray stampin mist to the stampin up cleaner pad and rub the stamp clean and dry it on the other side. Yes my stamps then always look like new and I like it that way.
I agree!
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Old 11-20-2007, 08:25 PM   #17
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i stamp and spray everytime!!
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Old 11-21-2007, 04:01 AM   #18
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I didn't know that you weren't supposed to clean every time! I always have my stampin' scrub and mist on the table while I work. It takes no time at all to clean as you go. If you let it sit, it takes so much more effort to clean. Kinda like leaving the dinner dishes overnight.
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Old 11-21-2007, 04:08 AM   #19
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I like the stamping surface to be clean. If ink gets on the wood, or the rubber or clear stamp gets stained, no problem. Just means I love them! But I HATE it when light colors get goofed up by old ink on the stamp surface!!!!
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Old 11-21-2007, 04:15 AM   #20
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I want my next image to be as crisp and clear as the very first, so the rubber gets cleaned after every stamping session. VersaMark gets cleaned off with a tiny dab of hair shampoo and a tooth brush, Stazon gets the cleaner, and everything else gets a wet washrag. Once in a while I treat all my babies to the cleaner since it has a conditioner in it too. (And I'm still curious about ___ Green (Simple Green?) as a cleaner since a lot of folk here rave about it. Just don't know where to find it.)
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Old 11-21-2007, 04:24 AM   #21
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I too clean mine after every use. I like not haveing to worry about crossing inks when I stamp and my rubber get conditioned. I just don't like the ink gunk left in ctacks on my stamps. I do use a toothbrush when I need to.
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Old 11-21-2007, 04:27 AM   #22
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I want to know when my stamp is well inked. I don't want to have to guess whether the ink I am seeing is new or not.
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Old 11-21-2007, 06:10 AM   #23
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I clean them when i'm done for the day (a quick mist/swipe or a little more if I used VersaMark). But my goal is to get off any ink that may come back off with a future use. Especially something where I may have stamped in a dark color and will want to stamp in a light color next. But I am not trying to get them back to pristine condition and I don't protect my wood blocks against stains. I'm a messy stamper, and I'm cool with that. My hands, rubber, blocks, pants, face, you name it will have ink on it when I'm done making a project.
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Old 11-21-2007, 06:25 AM   #24
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I'm a messie Bessie (remember those little dolls?), and ink is EVERYWHERE when I'm stamping, but when I'm done I make sure the ink is cleaned off of the rubber so that no ink is left to ruin the next day's creations or to blur the fine details. I'm not concerned about how my stamps look, only about how they stamp -- I don't care if there's ink on the wood, and I don't care if the rubber is discolored, as long as no more "loose" ink is left. I believe the propaganda about conditioning the rubber, so I faithfully used my stampin' mist. I have Simple Green, but wasn't impressed (I was trying to clean off Staz-on White from my Lovely as a Tree) with the results.
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Old 11-21-2007, 06:44 AM   #25
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My mom's friend NEVER, and I mean NEVER EVER cleans her stamps. She stamps and puts them away, I swear. Can you imagine? Hope she doesn't do that with her silverware (remind me never to eat at her house)!

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Old 11-21-2007, 07:28 AM   #26
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I'd like to say I clean as I go, but alas, I don't. I do clean them up when I clean off my desk (which I do in between each card/project or else I can't think straight). I fall into the camp that wants the rubber clean, but doesn't care so much what the mount looks like.

Another reason some people might want to keep their mounts pristine could be for the resale value. I know it doesn't make a lot of difference as far as the impression, but if given the option of buying the same stamp/set, I'm sure I'd opt for the newest/cleanest looking.

(Does that make me shallow? )
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Old 11-21-2007, 07:33 AM   #27
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I chuckled when I saw the title of this thread, hoping there was some secret to not cleaning them!

We need a new tool, like a jewelry cleaner only for stamps. You put all your dirty stamps in the machine, plug it in and voila, a hundred stamps come out clean.

Someone get on this!!
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Old 11-21-2007, 08:23 AM   #28
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I always clean my stamps, after every use, but I have had friends over who use my stamps, don't clean them and put them in the box. When I go to stamp with them I think they are clean and I have ruined a few pads that way. Now I just say "leave them out, I will clean them!" You are wrecking my stuff!!!"
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Old 11-21-2007, 11:14 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by jeaniebean55View Post
I want my next image to be as crisp and clear as the very first, so the rubber gets cleaned after every stamping session. VersaMark gets cleaned off with a tiny dab of hair shampoo and a tooth brush, Stazon gets the cleaner, and everything else gets a wet washrag. Once in a while I treat all my babies to the cleaner since it has a conditioner in it too. (And I'm still curious about ___ Green (Simple Green?) as a cleaner since a lot of folk here rave about it. Just don't know where to find it.)
I have found Simple Green at my local W*Mart. I haven't tried it for cleaning stamps, but it does work well for general house cleaning. :0)
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Old 11-21-2007, 12:02 PM   #30
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I clean mine to the point that no more ink comes off - if they are stained so be it - I just dont want to cross contaminate my ink pads.
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