Spiff up finish on older silver plate horn?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Harky, Nov 6, 2013.

  1. Harky

    Harky Pianissimo User

    Feb 22, 2013
    Lancaster, PA
    Folks: I have a lightweight Yamaha 6340, vintage 1986-87 with only a few small areas worn down to the brass. The horn has been well taken care of... no dings or other marks. I am getting it back from Anderson's following a valve job. When I place this old beauty beside a new horn the shine is a bit dull even after my best efforts to hand polish. Does anybody have any recommendation, short of a complete replate job, that can bring the finish back to close or near its original shine? I do have a buffing/polishing wheel but I do not want to do irreparable harm in the effort to do the impossible, (bring it back to a new/like new shine) if that's truly the case. If there is nothing that can be done - that's okay and I'll save the time trying - but I had to ask if anyone out there had any thoughts or recommendations regarding the possibility of bringing this keeper back to its original mirror like shine. Thank you!
  2. robrtx

    robrtx Mezzo Forte User

    May 26, 2012
    A minimally abrasive silver polish such as Hagerty"s or 3M Tarni shield has always worked for me with a clean micro fiber polishing cloth. I would only buff by hand (no wheel) and be aware that any polish will remove some silver.
  3. Jolter

    Jolter Piano User

    Apr 1, 2009
    I learned a trick for polishing silver with minimal abrasion. It involves putting the object in warm salt water, with a piece of aluminum foil. It supposedly chemically removes any tarnish without affecting the healthy silver. I only tried it on cutlery, though!
    Do you people think this would be appropriate for use with an instrument? I'm counting on the water key corks coming unglued, but that should be easy enough to fix.
  4. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    Remove valves and lay them aside and do not use iodized table salt and then not more than a tablespoon full (just enough makes the water an improved electrolytic conductor). The active ingredient is about 1/4 cup of baking soda. Have water hot to touch, but not boiling. The process takes about 15 minutes to a half hour. Then plain water rinse externally and flush internally. Some suggest a sanitizing flush with 91% isopropyl alcohol. Air dry (the alcohol will enhance the drying) and hand buff with clean microfiber cloth, DO NOT POWER BUFF! You may then want to wear dark glasses in the shining glare of your trumpet. I've yet to lose a water key cork and suspect if laid aside to dry, the adhesive that was softened will now reset
  5. jaemard

    jaemard Mezzo Piano User

    Jul 2, 2012
    San Rafael, CA
    Wright's silver cream.

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