How To Care For Brass

materials that has been used throughout history.~Brass is used in just about every form you can think of where a strong material is needed.~Did you know that brass is one of the best metals to use?}  flexibility and shine, brass is used for everything from candle holders to hinges and mechanical parts.~Since it is so malleable, brass can take on just about any shape or form.~Because it is a flexible material, brass can be used in a array of settings.} In order to make your brass shine, you should use restorative techniques to make it look its best. You can make antique brass look like new by following the three simple steps in this article.


Step 1

The first thing that you must do is get your brass ready for buffing. If you have old brass, this might be a critical step in the process. In order for your brass to be properly polished, it must be in raw, clean form. All sealant must be removed from the material before it can be restored. To clean the brass, begin by running it in warm, soapy water. This is the most effective way to guarantee the brass is not destroyed. If your brass has been covered in lacquer or paint, you will need a more aggressive technique to properly prepare it. After removing surface grit and grime with the soapy water, it may be required to dunk your brass in lacquer thinner for several hours. To remove the lacquer, use a nylon bristle brush the following day after it has soaked in a gentle, circular motion. The lacquer should now be gel like in texture, and easily come off of the brass. It is important to be very thorough, and remove every bit of lacquer to get a proper finish. If you don’t want to wait overnight, you can also buy paint stripper. This usually comes in a spray can, and is far more effective than regular lacquer thinner is. After spraying a thick layer of stripper on the brass, and letting it foam for an hour or two, scrub it with a nylon brush and run it under water. Repeat as many times as its required. Once your brass is shiny, and in its raw state, you are ready to buff it. At this point, you can no longer touch the brass with your hands. Doing so can leave fingerprints which stain the brass and leave fingerprint shaped patina marks on the brass. Wear powder free rubber gloves and soft cotton gloves to handle the material.


Step 2

To buff your antique brass, the best thing to use is a rotary buffer or grinder with buffing attachment. Begin by using a coarse grit polishing compound to the wheel, and buff every scratch of your brass in the same direction to get the best result possible. You will need to keep adding polishing compound after every few passes to make sure you do the best job possible. After the brass has looks shiny and smooth, change to a lower grit compound, such as tripoli. Again, buff every square inch of brass until it is shining. If you want to take it one step further, you can use a finishing compound, such as rouge or low-grit black magic, and buff it one last time. This will make your brass glowing, and it is the best appearance you can get. While you are using the buffer, you must make sure you don’t touch the brass, and keep the brass out of humid conditions. Keep a microfiber rag handy to rub off excess polishing compound during the process.


Step 3

Now, you have to get the brass clean. Polishing compound is hard to see if your brass has been thoroughly polished, but if you take a white cloth and wipe your brass with it, it will expose how dirty the brass is. For this step, use a chemical cleaner such as diluted acetone or carburetor cleaner and a rag to dissolve any remaining compound. At this point, your brass is finished, and even antique brass will look new.


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