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"Cleaning copper discoloration from baking"

March 29, 2021

Q. Good day to all, hope everyone is safe and well.

We have to oven bake a copper part as part of a soldering process. This sends the copper dull and mis-coloured.

I was wondering if anyone knew if there was any kind of dip chemical that would bring the copper surface back to a lovely clean shine after?

Many thanks

Russ Harris
- Birmingham, UK

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Plating Shop Manager [Salisbury, MD]
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Revere copper cleaner
March 2021

A. Hi Russ. There are numerous copper & brass polishes which with a little mechanical help will polish the copper. Revere Copper Cleaner is offered for the exact purpose of polishing copper after exposure to heat...

But brightening with just a dip and no mechanical assistance requires stronger chemicals. It's possible that sulfuric acid plus hydrogen peroxide will do it. This should be available from a supplier as a proprietary with instructions, the right ratio, and stabilizers to inhibit the decomposition of the peroxide. This dipping service is probably available from a jobshop as a test of whether it will work, and/or if the chemistry is beyond your shop's ability to safely handle. EPI (Electrochemical Products Inc.) [a finishing.com supporting advertiser] has a video showing the sequence of cleaning, bright-dipping, and de-oxidizing that should meet your needs by being just a sequential dipping process.

Luck & Regards,

pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Aloha -- an idea worth spreading
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey

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