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removing chrome tarnish?

Discussion in 'Technical Side of Things' started by ruger9, Dec 3, 2008.

  1. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    Just wondering what you guys use to remove tarnish (from hand sweat/oils) on the chrome bits of your guitars. I've got "chrome polish", but before I use it, I thought I'd check in with you guys. I'm going to be very craeful, of course, but don't want to hurt anything (like pickup surrounds and whatnot) if I use the "wrong" product.
     
  2. tartanphantom

    tartanphantom Country Gent

    Age:
    53
    Jul 30, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Believe it or not, the best tarnish remover I have ever found is dry cigarette/cigar/pipe ash. Sprinkle some on, rub in with a paper towel. Repeat if necessary. Doesn't leave scratches either. It will remove tarnish from chrome, silver, nickel, gold, platinum. However, it won't do much for aluminum or iron/steel oxidation.

    Best of all, if you know a smoker, it's free!
     
  3. Pappy

    Pappy Country Gent

    Age:
    32
    Jun 4, 2008
    Georgia
    So Tartan, how exactly did you find this out?
     
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  5. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    never heard THAT ONE before...
     
  6. Jeff O

    Jeff O Country Gent

    Sep 25, 2008
    The Motor City
    Anyone ever use NAVAL JELLY ?

    I've used Coca-Cola on my bike parts.
     
  7. g6120

    g6120 Gretschie

    208
    Jun 16, 2008
    usa
    i like instruments that look like they have been used not beatup and a little tarnish along with some playing ware well to me that gives a guitar a bit of character .


    there are many options on todays market that can do what you would like to do so it should not be a problem finding a safe product .
     
  8. Cassady

    Cassady Gretschie

    126
    Jun 2, 2008
    Lincoln, Nebraska
    I use Simichrome polish on the nickel plated pickups on one of my guitars and it works very well. You can probably find it at your local neighborhood Harley-Davidson store.

    I've seen the ash trick used to remove tarnish on a silver band and it seemed to work very well, too.

    Cassady
     
  9. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    naval jelly... I used to use that on my bikes too. I actually tried to find some locally, and NO ONE had it... Home Depot, Lowes, Sears hardware, nobody...
     
  10. Cassady

    Cassady Gretschie

    126
    Jun 2, 2008
    Lincoln, Nebraska
    I'd be leery about naval jelly unless you want to artificially age parts--I think that's what some of the people doing relics use on their metal parts to cause (not clean up) corrosion...

    Cassady
     
  11. tartanphantom

    tartanphantom Country Gent

    Age:
    53
    Jul 30, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    I agree with that... naval jelly is extremely strong and is primarily designed as a rust solvent, not a tarnish remover.


    As far as the tobacco ash trick goes, I actually learned about it as a kid. My parents were huge antique buffs, and I was going to antique auctions at the age of three. It is a widely known practice in antique collecting circles.
     
  12. Raspy

    Raspy Country Gent

    Age:
    73
    Jun 7, 2008
    extreme no. ca.
    We used to use Coca-Cola to loosen
    rusted lug nuts on wheels...

    ===============================

    <><> Raspy <><>
     
  13. Pappy

    Pappy Country Gent

    Age:
    32
    Jun 4, 2008
    Georgia
    That's a satisfactory answer I guess. I was kind of hoping to hear "well I was walking with my now-burnt-out pipe and tripped and the ash went all over my tarnish covered guitar and as I was cleaning it up I realised it cleaned the chrome!"
     
  14. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    OK, so the pickups cleaned up nicely with windex.

    The tuners & signature plate, however, are another story.

    They have FINGERPRINTS on them. Like, permanent. Well, windex won't take them off. I tired a magic eraser, it didn't work either. I mean, oil from the guys hands tarnished fingerprints into the keys? So now I'm down to giving Brasso a try... "cleans & polishes brass, pewter, chrome, copper, & stainless."

    Any objections?
     
  15. tartanphantom

    tartanphantom Country Gent

    Age:
    53
    Jul 30, 2008
    Murfreesboro, TN
    No objections here. I'd use a SOFT cloth and perhaps let it soak in a bit. The worst it could do is strip the chrome off.


    Don't you hate people with "acid sweat"?:eek:

    Just kidding... folks can't help it if they have corrosive perspiration-- but if they do, they just need to stick to playing the banjo!:D
     
  16. Raspy

    Raspy Country Gent

    Age:
    73
    Jun 7, 2008
    extreme no. ca.
    I used Brasso one time on some
    brass plated fishing lures... Took
    the finnish off...

    Of course we used it in the Navy,,,
    and it did a fine job...

    My thinking is,,,(and that could be
    dangerous) is it will work good on
    something that is solid brass,,, not
    so good on something that is brass
    plated...

    ===============================

    <><> Raspy <><>
     
  17. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    Brasso was a no-go. The chrome is shinier now, but the fingerprints remain.
     
  18. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    UPDATE:

    The tuners aren't chrome, they're NICKEL-PLATED.
     
  19. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    OK, so nothing so far works. Keep in mind, these "fingerprints on the tuners" aren't real noticeable... unless you're LOOKING for them, I doubt you'd see them. Just thought if maybe there was a way to remove them...

    I still find it amazing that FINGERPRINTS... PERMANENTLY... "oxidized"? I don't know... into the tuning heads. Never seen that before.
     
  20. Mark W

    Mark W Country Gent

    Age:
    64
    Jun 6, 2008
    Central Florida
    Just replace them...otherwise they will drive you crazy and you will end up selling the guitar!
     
  21. LeeIsLegend

    LeeIsLegend Electromatic

    Age:
    32
    65
    Nov 28, 2008
    san antonio
    I rub feces on my chrome parts to get the tarnish out. Works like a charm. Just make sure to wash your hands several times or you'll be stink-palming people for days...
     

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