cleaning buttons

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kenleyboy
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cleaning buttons

Post by kenleyboy » Mon Feb 19, 2018 10:19 am

Apologies if this subject has already been covered . Was on a club dig yesterday and managed a couple of interesting items as well as the much found selection of buttons . To be fair I do not mind finding buttons and along the way I have managed to collect up a few nice decorative ones with interesting patterns .
Most of them are quite dull and I would like to know if there is a specific cleaning agent or some type of wax that can be applied just to take away that dull matt finish .I have heard of beeswax just rubbed in gently to seal the surface which is all I really want to do or is it best to just leave well alone .
Thanks in advance


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Koala
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Re: cleaning buttons

Post by Koala » Mon Feb 19, 2018 11:31 am

Not really

Could be

Brass
Silver
Copper
Pewter
Lead
And so on.


Some of the more corroded pewter button and copper alloy are quite easy to destroy any detail that's left on them by harsh cleaning

Link to some general cleaning advice

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Wansdyke44
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Re: cleaning buttons

Post by Wansdyke44 » Mon Feb 19, 2018 11:46 am

Have you tried leaving them in some coca cola overnight?
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fred
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Re: cleaning buttons

Post by fred » Mon Feb 19, 2018 12:19 pm

Have a shufti in the cleaning section and try a few searches on here and elsewhere for pointers. Then experiment with unimportant bits until you find something that works for you and which gives you the finished result that you want.

Thick crud can be removed with all sorts of household things like coca cola, lemon juice and vinegar depending upon what type of crud it is. Most of these will also very successfully remove a couple of millenia of patina and history.

I generally clean off the crud with a soft toothbrush, dry it thoroughly and then coat with Renaissance Wax. Other people use beeswax, shoe polish and all sorts of other concoctions. Be aware that some of these may be irreversible or may cause permanent damage to the object.

Finally I very strongly advise you not to clean anything which may be historically or financially important until you have obtained expert advice. I know financial value isn't everything but it is perfectly possible to knock 80% off of the value of a rare coin or artifact in a matter of seconds.

You have been warned. :D
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kenleyboy
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Re: cleaning buttons

Post by kenleyboy » Mon Feb 19, 2018 12:35 pm

Thank you all for the input . Some of the buttons are quite nice , hence my tentative question regarding cleaning . Common sense tells me if you are not sure then leave well alone .
Some very sound advice which I will take on board and perhaps leave them be for the time being .
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