An experiment in Cleaning Coins

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mhonzell
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An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#1 Unread post by mhonzell » Sat Oct 06, 2018 1:53 pm

I've taken three coins:
A clad, Nickel Copper, circulated, 1976 Bicentennial Kennedy Half
A clad, Nickel Copper, circulated 1976 Eisenhower Dollar
A .999 Fine Silver, 1987 Walking Liberty, badly toned

And photographed them, then cleaned them in stages:
First, the original coin
Second, a one minute dip in pure acetone while lightly rubbing the surfaces by hand, then rinse in water and pat dry
Third, a one minute dip in vinegar while lightly rubbing the surfaces by hand, then rinse in water and pat dry
Fourth, rubbing with a magic eraser dipped in vinegar, then rinse in water and pat dry



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mhonzell
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Re: An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#2 Unread post by mhonzell » Sat Oct 06, 2018 1:55 pm

Do you see hairlines?
Improper toning, or runny tones?
(You can super magnify all of these photos.)
Attachments
co-horz.jpg
cr-horz.jpg

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mhonzell
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Re: An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#3 Unread post by mhonzell » Sat Oct 06, 2018 1:56 pm

Do you see hairlines?
Improper toning, or runny tones?
(You can super magnify all of these photos.)
Attachments
bo-horz.jpg
br-horz.jpg

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mhonzell
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Re: An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#4 Unread post by mhonzell » Sat Oct 06, 2018 1:57 pm

Do you see hairlines?
Improper toning, or runny tones?
(You can super magnify all of these photos.)
Attachments
ao-horz.jpg
ar-horz.jpg

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mhonzell
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Re: An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#5 Unread post by mhonzell » Sat Oct 06, 2018 2:05 pm

In hand:
The acetone left a dull milky white appearance to the surface of the coin.
The vinegar seems to have slightly darkened the coin, but did not remove the milky appearance. Maybe more so with the darkening on the Walking Liberty.
The magic eraser was like polish. The milky appearance was removed and the silver coin has high luster.

The Kennedy and Ike show lightness where there was wear on the high spots, which make both coins look "wrong", splotchy.
The Walking Liberty, which had no wear looks great in hand, but the reeded edge does not match the toning of the faces being almost black between high ridges. The heavier tone marks on the reverse are now reversed being somewhat shinier than the originally exposed surfaces.

Rotating the Walking Liberty and Ike under a bright light reveals the faintest of hairlines in the larger field areas.

So, what's the point?
A photograph can hide a lot. Remember that when you're shopping on eBay.

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Re: An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#6 Unread post by PALH1 » Sat Oct 06, 2018 3:06 pm

...... :yourock: :trophy:

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Re: An experiment in Cleaning Coins

#7 Unread post by PetesPockets55 » Sat Oct 06, 2018 5:51 pm

Great experiment and info. Thank you.
Like you said, the light only has to hit the coin from a different angle to mask those hairlines
(or to make markers more visible on varieties).

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