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How should i clean a tarnished copper band?

Discussion in 'Pipes' started by BigB, Oct 8, 2011.

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  1. BigB

    BigB Member

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    Found a little Stanwell pipe in a tobacco shop today on my way home from the airport that I really liked.

    It's a Stanwell (bent, sandblasted, paneled billiard), the stamp on the shank says Nordic and 255. I had never seen one quite like it before so I grabbed it up.

    Anyways, It has a metal band, copper and I'm guessing nickle.

    The copper is a little tarnished, not turning blue or anything, just a little discolored from being handled most likely.

    Any suggestions on what to clean/polish it with?

    I didn't want to go putting any harsh chemicals on it, I don't know if they would hurt the stain, or me:eek:

    I read somewhere that white vinegar and baking soda mixed into a paste works on copper pots, but I wasn't sure what to use in this case..

    Thanks.
     


  2. JuJu McMojo

    JuJu McMojo Member

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    Vinegar and baking soda? --isn't that how you make a "volcano?" I'd suggest Brasso as I've had good luck with it in the past. I apply it with a Q-tip, being careful not to get it on the briar. When I worked in a candy shop, we'd clean our brass kettles with citric acid and water solution. If you're strongly opposed to using chemicals, use lemon juice and kosher salt (yes it has to be kosher so there's no added iodine). Good luck.
     
  3. Old Ted

    Old Ted Active Member

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    Solvol Autosol:th1:
     
  4. jhe888

    jhe888 Member

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    Brasso, Flitz, or Simichrome. Keep it off the wood. Won't hurt you.
     
  5. yinyang

    yinyang Some rim charring is to be expected.

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    To minimize wood exposure to your metal polish of choice, you could put a wrap or two of painter's masking tape over the adjacent briar. It isn't fool proof, but it can help.
     
  6. BigB

    BigB Member

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    Thanks guys. My wife handed me some tarn-x that she uses on jewelry. It says it works on copper, but also says not to use it on chrome, and I'm pretty sure the nickel part of the band is a type of chrome.

    I think I'll give the lemon and salt a try first. That seems the least likely to hurt anything.
     
  7. jhe888

    jhe888 Member

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    Well, lemon is acid and salt attracts moisture and promotes corrosion, so I'm not sure I agree. A gentle metal polish is less likely to do any harm. I use Simichrome on all the brass rings on my pipes. No problems, ever.
     
  8. BigB

    BigB Member

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    I think you're right. I didn't have lemons so tried white vinegar and salt this afternoon. It took the tarnished fingerprint looking spots off, but about 2 hours later the whole ring was starting to look a little dull. Sort of like a used penny.

    So, while I was at the hardware store today I picked some Brasso and after a little rubbing with a q-tip it looks brand new again.
     
  9. jhe888

    jhe888 Member

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    Most of the metal polishes have some wax or something to protect against further oxidation. Vinegar or lemons won't so the copper will start to tarnish again right away.
     
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