This Bauche safe came from Avignon “The City of Two Popes” in Southern France. It dates to around 1870. As the pictures show below, it was in a very rusted state when we acquired it.
We disassembled it completely, including the lock mechanism, and chemically removed the old paint (which was old, but not original). After wire brushing the interior, all the parts were submersed in a bath of liquid rust remover. We then painted the interior with a rust inhibitor primer and followed up with a satin black enamel.
We left the exterior plate steel bare (no paint) to keep it’s raw and rustic charm and sprayed the exterior with a clear satin. After some wire brushing to the cast parts and polishing to other parts, we reassembled everything and redid the interior.
The nameplate reads “INCOMBUSTIBLE SYSTEME BAUCHE BREVETE S.G.D.G. USINE A GUEUX.”
Bauche was known for it’s “incombustible” fire resistant safes. In 1967, they merged with Fichet to form Fichet-Bauche which still produces high-end safes today.