Purification of old coins at home
Numismatics, namely the so-called science that studies the history of coinage, is a very exciting and informative hobby that is not complete without the ability to clean old coins. Some of them may have real value, but any metal, with time, oxidizes and loses its former brilliance and beauty.
What is interesting: sometimes the most stale and dull specimens can be much more expensive than polished and iridescent. It’s one thing if a coin is covered with numerous layers of fat, dirt or oxide, but this is a completely different question if there is a noble patina on the surface, which may be a witness to the long life history of the coin.
Naturally, we are talking about a uniform coating, but if the patina has spread around the coin with ugly stains or stains, then she probably needs cleaning. Of course, for cleaning old and valuable coins, special compositions and liquids have been invented for a long time, which quite well remove various impurities and oxides from their surface.True, such liquids are not cheap, that does not add to them balls of popularity among numismatists.
Of course, if the coin is very valuable, and you do not have much experience in cleaning, then the most sensible will be to turn to specialists who, using professional tools, will be able to bring it to the proper view. The fact is that inept cleaning can reduce the value of a coin in two or even three times, so you need to approach this process carefully.
If you do not want to spend money on expensive mixes, but you really want to try yourself in this interesting case, you can arm yourself with proven folk methods. If you are wondering how to clean coins at home, then first you will have to figure out what kind of metal they were made of.
These can be precious metals, for example, silver, gold or platinum, as well as non-precious base metals, such as copper, zinc, nickel and various alloys. Why is this so important? The point is not only in their cost, but also in the possible reaction of alloys to cleaning mixtures, because there is a basic rule: do not hurt!
Universal cleaning methods
Before resorting to more aggressive cleaning methods, we recommend trying methods that are gentle and safe for the appearance of coins. So, the first method is to use a soap solution.
Dissolve some baby soap in warm water, dip a coin in it for half an hour, and then take out, rinse with warm water and clean the stains with a regular hard toothbrush, in places of particular stains you can go for a toothbrush. But at once we hurry to warn you: this method is unlikely to help the first time, most likely, the above described manipulations will have to be repeated several times.
If the contamination is serious enough, then you can use soap "mush" instead of a soap solution. To do this, grate a laundry soap (preferably white) and add just enough water so that you end up with a kash-like mixture. Fold the coins into it for several hours, and then you can brush them with a brush.
Sometimes, in order for a coin to get a proper look, it must lie in such a solution for several weeks, however, periodically it must be taken out and cleaned with a brush.These methods are especially good when you can not make out what material the coin is made of, and therefore are afraid to spoil its surface.
Cleaning precious coins
In general, coins made of precious metals are much less susceptible to corrosion and are not particularly afraid of time, especially as regards gold and platinum. If you still need to clean these coins, you can use the following folk remedies.
- Ammonia. Pour ammonia in a small container and dip the coins into it (if there are several, they should not touch each other). Coins must be turned over periodically in solution, but remember that you cannot get them out of it, otherwise the metal may permanently deteriorate if it comes in contact with air. In alcohol, they should lie about 20 minutes, then start to slowly pour water. You can get clean coins only when the content of ammonia in the tank is significantly less than the water content.
- Lemon acid. Another popular method for old precious metals, which allows you to polish coins to perfect brilliance.The solution is simple: in a glass of water, dissolve 2 tablespoons of powder. Now put the coin in the cup, turn it over periodically, and after 10 minutes, pull it out and clean it thoroughly with a toothbrush. By the way, citric acid can not be dissolved in a metal container, it is better to use plastic for these purposes.
- Soda. Another simple method of cleaning old coins is to use soda. Repeat the same manipulations as in the case of citric acid, we take out a coin and rub it with a wool rag.
Coins of the USSR
In the collections of our domestic numismatists you can find collectible and rare copies of coins, which were let in during the times of the USSR. It can be gold and silver copies, about the methods of cleaning which we have already said, but for a long time copper and copper-aluminum coins were in use, and later zinc was also added.
How to clean such instances? Copper coins can be processed with conventional vinegar, while the time you are in the solution you must regulate yourself, depending on the degree of contamination. Another option is still the same soap solution - safe and effective.