How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

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trombononone
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How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by trombononone »

Hello all, I have a King 2b Silversonic that I am wanting to polish. I asked the shop I frequent about what polish they use and the guy told me to get Flitz polish which I then did, however I heard from someone I asked about it that it may be too abrasive so I was wondering if anyone here had experience with it. It's what the shop uses and the horns I've taken in the past always look good but I haven't taken in anything silver before so I'm just a bit unsure.
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BGuttman
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by BGuttman »

I used Gorham's silver cream on a 1947 2B Silvertone and it worked fine. Just don't rub too hard.

Newer SilverSonics had lacquer over the silver, so if yours doesn't tarnish you may be lacquered too.
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WGWTR180
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by WGWTR180 »

Very carefully.
whitbey
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by whitbey »

The metal is solid sterling silver. It will be a while before you cut though the space plating would take up let alone the whole thing.

I just use a liquid silver polish. put a tray under the horn so I can dip a rag in the spill over a and wipe the horn.

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harrisonreed
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by harrisonreed »

I wouldn't worry about it
Macbone1
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by Macbone1 »

I've polished LACQUERED bells with Flitz so it's pretty safe. Only apply and rub just enough to do the job, don't buff and buff. Great product.
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bigbandbone
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by bigbandbone »

If it’s a 2B Silver Sonic it probably has King epoxy lacquer on it. Really tough stuff. Just leave it alone.
Posaunus
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by Posaunus »

The ~1967 King 3B SilverSonic that I played for several years must have been lacquered. The Sterling Silver exterior / gold-washed interior bell looked great - never showed a sign of tarnish. I cared for it like any other lacquered bell - wiped it clean with a microfiber cloth after every session and put it back in the case completely dry.

Caution: avoid any contact with ammonia-containing cleaners like Windex! Ammonia can attack some lacquers.

I have a 2-ounce bottle of Selmer Lacquer Polish (No. 2977). Never saw the need to use it on a well-maintained instrument. :idk:
ryebrye
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by ryebrye »

I've got the same question - a 1950s era silversonic is on its way, doesn't appear to be lacquered because in the photos it's got some black tarnish spots on it. Nothing major, but I'd like to clean them up.

I've heard that submerging the bell in warm water with baking soda and the bell touching aluminum foil will transfer the tarnish away from the silver - so I was thinking of trying that.

How do you do it for a full bell section though? Get an appropriate size trash can? Maybe a cooler would work? Filling my entire bathtub with enough water to submerge the whole bell seems like it'd be rather wasteful.

I've also seen some trumpet player wrapping the trumpet in aluminum foil and submerging that rather than just putting it in water with baking soda.
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tbdana
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Re: How should I polish a sterling silver instrument?

Post by tbdana »

I just use a polishing cloth on my sterling silver Conn 88HSGXCL.

Image

While a light silver cream might be okay for a sterling silver horn for a while, eventually you end up taking metal off the the instrument which changes both the looks and the sound. This can take many years, of course. But every time you use a silver cream you're removing some of the metal. And I've found that the polishing cloth keeps it looking great.
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