How do you clean your brass?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2014: How do you clean your brass?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jon Allen on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 10:53 am:

Having TWO 1914 brass era T's has it's downside...CLEANING LOTS OF BRASS! To make matters worse, I just got a "new" 1914 speedster that had been in storage since Jesus was a toddler. Here is a picture of the old girl:

It needs lots of work, not the least of which is polishing all the brass...
Not being one to avoid work, I nevertheless do believe in making things as easy as possible. One way I have found for polishing REALLY tarnished brass is SANDPAPER! Yes, sandpaper. You start (depending a bit on how bad the brass is) with about 500 grit and wet sand the brass. You don't need to do very much. You then switch to 1000 grit then 1500 grit, then 2000 grit and finally 2500 grit. By that time the brass is very shiny, and you finish off with ordinary brass polish like "Mother's" brand or something similar. It's quite a bit of work, but it works better than anything else I have found until yesterday...
Yesterday I was going to clean a brass plate around the parking brake. I had put clear coat on the plate and it was peeling off. After removing the plate from the floorboard, I applied paint stripper to the brass to remove the clear coat, and walla! it polished the brass. This stripper mind you was the real deal - Aircraft stripper with lots of methylene chloride that will make your hands sting if you get it on your skin.
Being ever the scientist, I tried an experiment...
I put the paint stripper on the old brass of the badly tarnished radiator pictured above. Here is a picture of the result:


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jon Allen on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 10:58 am:

Sorry, I had to post this separately. The posting software has stopped responding. I will post the picture later if the posting starts working again...
Suffice it to say the paint stripper with methylene chloride did a magnificent job of polishing the brass on that badly tarnished radiator.
Has anyone tried this before? Have you found other methods that work?
Thanks for nay input and experiences,
Jon


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jon Allen on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 11:01 am:

Ok, finally...


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charles Linsenbarth on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 01:17 pm:

The only problem with stripper is that it gets in cracks and seams and you can't get it out with out a lot of extra work.
Can we see some pictures of this car, looks really nice.
Charley


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jon Allen on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 01:52 pm:

Hi Charles,
This is the yellow speedster that was on ebay a few weeks ago. It came out of a museum sale in Shreveport, LA. Here are a couple more pictures:






It needs a lot of work, but it keeps me out of the bars...
Regards,
Jon


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charles Linsenbarth on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 02:08 pm:

What are your plans for this car, besides enjoying it? Nice car, I like speedster's with fenders for some reason, I guess because the first T I liked was a 27 full fender drag car.
Charley


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jon Allen on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 02:27 pm:

I have another car (a '14 runabout) that is just about finished. It made the cover of the Vintage Ford in Sept/Oct. So I guess I need to have something else to do...
For the yellow car, I already have a RAJO Head from Mark Chaffin and a SCAT stroker crank. The block in the car now is a 1926. It has a Ruckstell rear end. I am thinking of sending it to Mike Bender to put in the stuff and rebuild the engine/tranny. I already have a 12 V Optima battery and a starter & alternator from Larry Becker Jr. My first priority is to get the other car (a '14 runabout) back on the road. It has been down since before Christmas putting in a Ruckstell, Sure-Stops and floating hubs. I just got the brakes bled, brake lights hooked-up, Ruckstell shifter, etc.,etc...
I should be starting it in the next day or two. God willin' and the creek don't rise, I will be driving it to shows for the summer and working on the yellow one (named Jambalya since she is from Louisiana).
Anyway if you want to come out and help with painting, let me know...
Regards,
Jon


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charles Linsenbarth on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 04:05 pm:

Thanks Jon, looks like an interesting project.
I'm still collecting up parts for my 0T-T project, by the time it's done they will have kicked me off the forum.
Charley


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tim Eckensviller on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 05:22 pm:

I just polished the very tarnished oil cap on my '26 (gotta start somewhere) with this stuff called Autosol. In under two minutes it was looking brand new but of course it did take a little elbow grease to get it looking that way. I don't know if it would be good enough to get a mirror finish on bigger brass parts, though.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Chantrell - Adelaide, Australia on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 05:37 pm:

Autosol...and elbow grease.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charles Linsenbarth on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 06:24 pm:

Another nice car!
charley


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tim Wrenn on Sunday, June 01, 2014 - 09:02 pm:

Blue Magic on this one...also am trying "Prism" that I got through Amazon..seems to work just as good. Both are ammonia based though, and I'd like to get away from that if I can. So eventually I'll try another product called Moonshine Brass Polish..supposedly not ammonia based. We'll see how it works.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bob Coiro on Monday, June 02, 2014 - 01:19 am:

I've tried just about everything, Simichrome, Mother's, Brasso, Cape Cod, Nevr-Dull, Maas, and I could go on and on. This stuff, "Prism Polish," is very different and unique in that, first of all, it works like crazy. The amount of effort involved is about equal to Windexing a pane of glass—in other words, not much. I prefer the cream to the liquid because it's just easier to control.



Aside from requiring the least amount of elbow grease, by far, than anything else I've used, this stuff is non-toxic, non-flammable and doesn't stink of ammonia (or anything else, for that matter).

Oh. And it's inexpensive. A little goes a very long way.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kim Dobbins on Monday, June 02, 2014 - 02:17 am:

I bought some prism, takes a lot of work to get it to get results on tarnished brass, I keep going back to brasso.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Norton on Monday, June 02, 2014 - 03:38 am:

For tarnished brass, Super Fine grade 0000 steel wool with Brasso or Autosol.
Any coarser grade might be risky.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steel_wool#Grades


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bill Alexander in Albion, Maine on Monday, June 02, 2014 - 06:55 am:

NEVERDULL wicking. Marine stores have it. Lasts well even in salt water areas.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Monday, June 02, 2014 - 05:08 pm:

Oh, If you guys have tried some Brite boy metal polish for the tarnished brass your working too hard. I've found it doesn't give that deep glow shine we want so I hit it with the mothers Billet Metal polish which brings out the gloss and lasts a very long time.I also like the blue Magic that Tim uses because the guys at Brassworks uses that.

Sometime I thought I'd try the Prism but if Kim didn't like it maybe I'll wait till I find someone that has some before I order it.

I get the Brite Boy by the gallon at the janititorial supply.

The Brasso and Neverdull I think used to be ok but have changed the formula from what I had in some old cans.


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