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Subject: Brass


From: Mark Erdmann <erdmannmark<-at->
Date: Monday, March 2, 2009
Samantha de van Geer <sam.vandegeer [at] oxfordshire__gov__uk>

>I am wondering if anyone can advise me on the more appropriate
>conservation materials for cleaning Social History post-18th century
>brass.  We have prelim, brasso, biox, Solvol Autosol and Rubin Brite
>in our conservation cupboards.  I know that Prelim is safe to use
>but is not effective on very badly tarnished and corroded surfaces.
>Can anyone advice me whether any of the other materials we have are
>appropriate and whether there is anything which we should be using
>that I have not listed. I would also like to know if there are any
>up to date articles out there on this matter.

I would not use Autosol, as it is quite abrasive and I believe it
contains ammonia, which as you may know is not good for long-term
preservation of brass objects, which is why you should not use
Brasso either.  I have found Silvo polish wadding to be effective,
as it polishes like Brasso but without the ammonia.  Calium
carbonate mixed with ethanol works slowly, but is very safe; just
remember it requires lots of rinsing and agitation with soft brushes
to remove the residue.  You'll think it's all removed and then after
it dries, the white haze will reappear.  I have found ethanol to be
effective at rinsing off the calcium carbonate residue.

Mark Erdmann

                  Conservation DistList Instance 22:50
                  Distributed: Tuesday, March 3, 2009
                       Message Id: cdl-22-50-004
Received on Monday, 2 March, 2009

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