cleaning coins

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by rarecoin, May 3, 2011.

  1. rarecoin

    rarecoin New Member

    any body have any tips on how to clean coins
    (dont say with a toothbrush and tooth past or with a wire brush becouse that ruins the coin:yes::rollling::welcome::thumb::):(;):D:eek::p:foot-mouth::cool::rolleyes::dead-horse::hail::mad::smile:confused::eek:)
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  3. KoinJester

    KoinJester Well-Known Member

    Any cleaning of coins will damage them. There are many threads discussing this just do a search
  4. jcakcoin

    jcakcoin New Member

    It's your coins. I wouldn't clean them though.
  5. RaceBannon

    RaceBannon Member

    Don't clean your coins!

    The chances are far greater that you will turn them into worthless junk, rather than enhance the way they look.

    If you really want to "conserve" your coins, send them to NCS.
  6. coinmaster1

    coinmaster1 Active Member

    You are not supposed to clean your coins; I hope you haven't yet! If you want them cleaned, send them to NCS.
  7. lkeigwin

    lkeigwin Well-Known Member

    Why don't you tell us why you want to clean your coins...what's on them that needs removing?

    There are many safe ways to clean coins, such as a gentle dish soap and warm water bath. Rinse well. Final rinse in distilled water.

    There are even more ways to improperly clean coins and ruin them.
  8. Taylor101

    Taylor101 New Member

    just dont clean the coins
  9. SirCharlie

    SirCharlie Chuck

    There's a lot of good sound advice very quickly here. Cleaning = ruining, and it can't be reversed.
    If you are not happy with the coin, please don't ruin it forever, just sell it and buy one you like.
  10. green18

    green18 Unknown member Sweet on Commemorative Coins Supporter

    Hey Charles, so very good to see you. :)

    Depending on what type of coin you want to clean determines what medium you will employ to do the deed. Now, I don't have any experiance with copper 'cause I'm not much involved with that, but proof silver? I've had moderate sucess with acetone in removing "haze". A nice over nite soak followed by a bath in distilled water usualy does the trick.

    MAKECENTS Active Member

    honestly i hate to play the devils advocate but i feel like soooooo many morgan dollars have been cleaned and by cleaned i mean dipped i know its not exactly taking a brush but it is taking some undesirable characteristics off of a coin. Im not saying it cant be caught or seen but sometimes i think its impossible to tell for sure especially one with great luster
  12. rarecoin

    rarecoin New Member

    i never clean my coins i was just loking for a safe way to clean them
  13. medoraman

    medoraman Supporter! Supporter

    So, what are you wanting to clean off of your coins? If it is dust or easily removed things like that I would say distilled water followed by a thorough drying usually will not hurt a circulated coin. Its a very large subject, full of a ton of pitfalls, which is why most people will just tell you flat out to never do it. 1000% more coins have been destroyed over the years by collectors wishing to clean coins than has ever been improved.
  14. RaceBannon

    RaceBannon Member

    On the topic of dipping. I've ruined coins by over-dipping them as well. I've heard you can use a 50% "jeweluster" 50% water mix and it won't be so harsh. Especially if you immerse the coin for less than 5 seconds, then rinse the coin in distilled water immediately after dipping.

    But after the way some of the coins looked when I dipped them, I'm even hesitant to try that.

    Now I just enjoy the natural toning/patina or I buy a new coin. Certainly many Morgans have been dipped over the years, but if someone over did it, you can tell.
  15. DoK U Mint

    DoK U Mint In Odd we Trust

    I collect for fun.

    And in my "fun" HAVE learned~

    Get a worthless similar coins and try cleaning it any way you want.
    I have learned that I can make a worthless coin ugly with most methods.

    Your methods may very.
  16. rarecoin

    rarecoin New Member

    what about using an ultrasonic cleanere
    like the ones that use electricity and water to clean meatl
  17. GDJMSP

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    I strongly disagree. Soap of any kind is one of the worst things you can use on a coin because it is all but impossible to get the soap residue off the coin.

    But yes there are ways to safely clean a coin and do it no harm. But what you are trying to remove from the coin decides what you will use to clean it. And I will say this as well, you should not even attempt to clean just any coin. The majority of them wil not be improved by the effort. Many will even look worse after than they did before. And even more are not worth the effort it takes.

    The cleaning is not the hard part. The hard part is deciding which ones should be cleaned at all.
  18. Siggi Palma

    Siggi Palma Well-Known Member

    Cleaning coins and doing it propper is a very hard thing to master, I have had luck and disasters but I used clad or coins that I didnt mind making a mess out off. And I came to the conclution that cleaning coins is not worth the risk you are taking. Many coins have different mixes of alloys that respond in a different way to cleaning.

    The only thing I use today is WD40

    Kidding hehe
    The only thing I use today is asintone on silver coins but not on bronz or copper alloys. I have dipped silver coins in the past that have very light toning but only on coins I know how will react.
  19. rarecoin

    rarecoin New Member

    what about ultrasonic cleaners
  20. lkeigwin

    lkeigwin Well-Known Member

    It is not impossible at all. Adequate rinsing works just fine. A quick acetone dip might help if you have trouble with soap residue.

    But again, what is it you're trying to remove from the coin? Virtually all the advice here is not to clean at all. Very sound. But let's not pretend that cleaning cannot be done safely too, by those who know what they're doing. Look at NGC's NCS. PCGS conserves coins all the time. They've done so for me many times.

    So here are some ways coins are cleaned:
    Organic material is often treated with acetone. PVC residue, paint, e.g. It will not harm genuine toning. Some collectors dip every coin they get in acetone (and rinse with distilled water) before they store them.

    Many collectors use long soaks in mineral oil (or other oils) for loosening up stubborn gunk. Some gently work on crud with rose thorns or toothpicks.

    Early copper collectors sometimes use xylene (commercial brand is Xylol, a cleaner like acetone) to remove very old contaminants.

    Many dealers dip tarnish and spots off with Ezest.

    There are gentle coin cleaners/preservatives on the market like CoinCare.

    Verdigris can be treated with Verdigone or Verdicare.

    The list goes on. MS70, Blue Ribbon.

    Will you screw up the cleaning job and damage the coin? Possibly, maybe probably. So it's best to do nothing and take the matter to a professional if you have to. Or experiment on coins of little value.
    BadThad likes this.


    Most coin shops carry a liquid cleaner called coin care. I use it on some of my wheaties and It seems to help. I still agree that cleaning a coin is not a good practice so do it on your lower common grades if at all.
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