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topic 15078

Keeping brass shiny


After polishing my brass-How do I keep the shine? I tried a clear spray. I did not like the finish-dull.

Phyllis Lubiniecki
- Albany, New York


General purpose lacquers must fit many needs and are not optimized toward protecting brass from tarnish in an indoor environment while retaining the luster. Buy a special purpose lacquer, and consider thinning it. G.J.Nikolas offers such specialty lacquers.

Ted Mooney, Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey


Machinery's Handbook

Now I am new to this sort of thing so please consider the safety aspect of anything that follows - and I hope someone tries to answer my problem as quickly as I am attempting to help you (go on say it "sarkey Sod") but mine is listed as letter 15079. now whether the following will be of help I am not sure - but it comes from my Machinery's Handbook =>
20th edition and is in two sections - the first titled "Colouring Brass" states Polished brass pieces can be given various shades from golden yellow to orange by immersing them for a certain length of time in a solution composed of five parts , by weight, of caustic soda, fifty parts water and ten parts copper carbonate. When the desired shade is reached the work must be well washed with water and dried in sawdust. Golden yellow may be produced as follows, Dissolve 100 grains lead acetate in one pint of water and add a solution of sodium hydrate until the precipitate which first forms is redissolved : then add 300 grains red potassium ferro-cyanide. With the solution at ordinary temperatures, the work will assume a golden yellow, but heating the solution darkens the colour, until at 125 degrees F. it has changed to brown.

And the 2nd part is titled "To produce a Rich Gold Colour". Brass can be given a rich gold colour by boiling it in a solution composed of two parts by weight, of Saltpeter, one part common salt, one part Alum, twenty four parts water and one part hydrochloric acid. Another method is to apply a mixture of three parts Alum, six parts Saltpeter, three parts Sulphate of Zinc, and three parts common salt. After applying this mixture the work is heated over a hot plate until it becomes black, after which it is washed with water, rubbed with vinegar, and again washed and dried.

Perhaps then your lacquer would not affect the shine so much - well at least I tried.

Nigel J Dyne
- United Kingdom

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