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any suggestions on preservation of civil war buckle

bwireman

New member
after unearthing a civil war belt buckle, i have notice a lot of oxidation around the border
which looks like rust. this appeared after cleaning with a soft bristle toothbrush and
a little dish detergent.
looking for suggestions to neutralize this reaction probably caused by exposure to air
and moisture.
thanks
bwireman
 

tabdog

New member
can accelerate when unearthed. I'm not an expert but I know from experience not to delay oiling it. I use a light oil to penetrate. and when the object soaks that up I put silicon oil on it.

Maby one of these guys that knows what their doing can give you a better way to do it. But don't let it die. It's a part of our past and I for one love exploring and preserving it.


Happy hunting

david in AR
 

markg

New member
[quote tabdog]can accelerate when unearthed. I'm not an expert but I know from experience not to delay oiling it. I use a light oil to penetrate. and when the object soaks that up I put silicon oil on it.

Maby one of these guys that knows what their doing can give you a better way to do it. But don't let it die. It's a part of our past and I for one love exploring and preserving it.


Happy hunting

david in AR[/quote]

On old coins like pennies and nickels I put them in a container with virgin olive oil for a few days before storing.
Don't know if that is good or not.
 

markg

New member
[quote tabdog]can accelerate when unearthed. I'm not an expert but I know from experience not to delay oiling it. I use a light oil to penetrate. and when the object soaks that up I put silicon oil on it.

Maby one of these guys that knows what their doing can give you a better way to do it. But don't let it die. It's a part of our past and I for one love exploring and preserving it.


Happy hunting

david in AR[/quote]

On old coins like pennies and nickels I put them in a container with virgin olive oil for a few days before storing.
Don't know if that is good or not.
 

John 'n' W.Va

New member
I know a man that owns a coin shop. He told me to put mineral oil on coins, He said it won't devalue the coin. I know coin dealers are picky about their coins. Maybe the same thing holds true for buckles. Oil will seal out the air and is great for protecting things.
 

Nemo

New member
Any cleaning technique will probably have a water residue which needs to be removed before final preservation treatment.

If moisture is a problem, try treating with denatured (not rubbing) alcohol. The alcohol will take up the water into its molecules and then evaporate. Or in the case of iron relics, you could buy a toaster oven at a garage sale and heat for a few minutes.. After your buckle is "dry" treat with Renaissance Wax or micro-crystalline wax. that's a wax developed at the British Museum for preservation of metals.

Hope this helps,

Dave Poche
 

Nemo

New member
Well.....I have also heard (but never tried) iron relics can be preserved much like the old frying pan with lard in an oven. Personally, I prefer tannic acid woolen dye/alcohol solutions or Rust-Oleum Rust Reformer. Both are acid based and again it's what professionals use. Both are solid preservers of iron

You can read all about preservation in my new CD "Exploring Civil War Campsites" that David Keith (Dixie Metal Detectors) sells. You can check out what he says about the CD on another thread of this forum.

Dave Poche
 

Nemo

New member
I just read on another forum about cleaning iron relics with a solution of molasses (4 parts water to one part molasses). I guess I'm a sucker for this. I can't figure out the chemistry of this mixture. Maybe some of the sulfur from the molasses forms sulfuric acid with the water to attack the rust.

Anyway last time I was out I came upon a cow identification chain and brass tag, so in it went to my witch's brew . I'll report back in about a month on the progress of this experiment. Suppose to be better than electrolysis.

Anyone else have any experience with this technique?

Dave Poche
 

bwireman

New member
thanks for all the input, i have read through all the suggestions and have taken action to
preserve the buckle.
glad to have a resource like findmall forum for research on metal detecting and artifact
preservation.
a google search did little to enlighten my knowledge on preservation of antiques.
appreciate each and everyones ideas.
bwireman
 

Nemo

New member
Well I tested the Molasses and Water technique for rust removal. All I got after 30 days was a bunch of very sticky molasses and water covered relic. I tested a rusty Iron chain from a cow tag and after 30 days I still have a rusty cow tag with a little less dirt on it. It was supposed to clean the rust off the iron much like electrolysis. DON'T TRY IT. IT DOESN'T WORK

BTW I found this formula and write up at the Civil War Bullet Forum under their featured articles. Too bad someone there didn't test the technique before they placed it in such a lofty spot on their forum. I used to be a member of this forum but I quit because I got tired of them moving my posts around to where they thought they should be. This usually buried them in some obscure place.Those guys are only interested in perfect dropped bullets and I believe they offer little to those of us with fired bullets.

I now have a big sticky mess in my garage that my wife is hounding me about. UGH! So much for testing.

Dave Poche
 

timwied

Member
I take old relics/coins and gently clean them with soap and water, dry them, then soak them in acetone overnight to remove any moisture, then put on a light coat of Renaissance Wax. Seals out the moisture and fingerprints!
 
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