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336 E. Franklin Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55404

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Are you interested in buying my furniture?
Possibly. Due to the high cost of shipping metal furniture, we generally only buy furniture from the Minneapolis/St. Paul area - unless your piece is especially rare, or if we happen to have a truck driving through your area. Also, due to the expenses involved in the restoration process, we usually cannot afford to pay very much for an as-is piece of furniture. If you think we would be interested in your furniture, please send us photos, either by e-mail or US Mail, along with your price and where you are located.

What is the value of my furniture? Can you appraise my furniture?
The value of vintage or antique furniture varies greatly, depending on the condition and rarity of the piece, among other factors. Generally, an unrestored piece of vintage metal office furniture is not worth much in and of itself. We can provide insurance appraisals of any vintage or antique piece of furniture for a flat fee of $55.00.

Can you identify my furniture?
We have a lot of archival material on our website, and will be adding more soon, so we ask that you first try and identify your furniture by viewing our website. If you cannot find your piece there, then we can research your furniture - we have one of the most extensive collections of vintage office furniture literature in existence. We charge $25 per hour for this service.

What is that white powder leaking out of my fireproof safe or file cabinet?
Different manufacturers used different types of fireproofing materials at different times. In our experience, the substance is usually gypsum-based, which is messy but harmless. Some manufacturers did, however, use asbestos - and since most of these companies went out of business or were absorbed into other companies, their manufacturing records no longer exist. The only way to know for sure is to have the material tested at a lab.

Do you have replacement keys for my desk or file cabinet?
In most cases we can have new keys made for you, however you may find it faster and less expensive to visit your local locksmith instead. If your lock has a number on it, give the locksmith that number as well as the name of the manufacturer. If the lock is on a drawer which is easy to remove, you can take the whole drawer to the locksmith.

How can I restore my own piece of furniture?
The process we use for restoring a piece of vintage metal furniture is quite costly, time-consuming and complicated - thus we generally do not recommend you do it yourself. Our first step is to disassemble the piece and have the original paint blasted off using plastic media rather than sand, as sand tends to pit and scratch the metal. We will then either paint it with a powder-coat paint, or sand and polish it with varying grits of sandpaper, followed by a clear powder coat for protection. If you attempt to do this yourself, NEVER touch exposed steel with bare hands, as the oil on your hands will leave fingerprints and begin to rust. A clear coat of some kind must be applied when polishing steel, as it will oxidize rapidly without it.

What is my vintage desktop made of? How can I clean it?
It is either a laminate or linoleum, specifically a desktop linoleum that is thinner and a bit softer than the stuff they use on floors. Linoleum is a wonderful writing surface, but does not hold up well to years of neglect and abuse. Due to the way the linoleum is attached, it is extremely difficult to replace. Stains will most likely not come out, especially if they're dark. Linoleum is primarily a mixture of cork and linseed oil, and thus is rather porous. If the top is worth saving, you can completely strip the surface with Armstrong brand New Beginning. Sometimes you can even sand out minor scratches and imperfections. You can then re-wax the top. The only way to get rid of gouges and indentations is to fill them with plastic wood filler, then sand and paint over it to match. Laminate desk tops, on the other hand, are easy to clean using either 409 or mild soap and water.

How do I clean my vintage aluminum chair?
Vintage aluminum chairs often have a yellowish build-up, caused either by the againg of the original protective lacquer coating, or by the accumulation of dirt and oils over many years. The best way to clean such aluminum parts is first with Soft Scrub and a wet sponge, and then to go over it with a light rubbing compound.

Do you sell spare parts?
We do sell spare parts and hardware if we have a sufficient quantity of the particular part you are looking for. In many cases, we do not - most parts we manage to salvage are used for our own restoration projects. However, certain parts we can readily provide, including the Flo-Tilt cylinder used to control the tilt on most vintage aluminum swivel chairs. The archives section of our website includes several exploded diagrams and parts lists for certain pieces of GF furniture. If you are looking for a specific part for one of these models, please consult the diagram to identify exactly which part you require.

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