Brasso Metal Polish In The 8-Ounce Bottle
Pros: As the name suggests, works great on brass. Restored the aluminum on one of my vintage table lamps.
Cons: Will clean and shine stainless steel, but most scratches remain. Ammonia smell when using – though less offensive than your average silver polish.
Some vintage collectibles are suitable for restoration. Other antiquities will suffer serious devaluation if their patina is removed. The tarnish on old coins should never be tampered with – nor should the finish on that period Philadelphia highboy handed-down by your favorite revolutionary relative.
Knowing when to and when not is often a matter of experience. One of the Laurel I-Beam table lamps I recently acquired has a body comprised of flat, brushed-aluminum panels that house a funky, 3-dimensional resin insert on either side. Once aluminum begins to pit, there is little that can be done to restore its shine.
Brasso… Makes Old Bodies New?
Such a rare and crazy piece of art deserves a second chance in the spotlight. Following disassembly, I applied Brasso to a piece of 4/0 (super fine) steel wool and worked it into each panel in the direction of the original factory brushing. Within a short time, the Brasso had removed all of the freckled discolorations that indicate pitting at the onset of aluminum corrosion. It also removed the majority of small scratches and left behind a soft luster on the smooth and restored surface. Best of all, it allowed the lamp to retain some of its half-century of wear, so as not to detract from its vintage character.
Some Old Bodies Rock
Copper and brass are another matter when the issue of patina arises. Aged copper, brass and bronze can be an attractive complement to a period lamp. Laurel‘s vintage Ribbon Lamp features a wide, graceful panel of copper presented with stylized undulations that resemble those of ribbon candy. In the opinion of most collectors, the aged finish on a classic piece such as this is priceless and should be retained to protect its monetary and artistic value.
My new, old cookware arrived today. Back in 1967, The Revere Ware Company marketed a line of copper cookware known as the Paul Revere Signature Collection. Using a new bonding process, a layer of copper for the exterior and stainless steel within made the cookware attractive and easy to maintain.
Fast-forward to 1982. The original classic style was maintained, but an additional layer of stainless bonded to the exterior made these pans virtually maintenance-free. After a 3-year production run, the American-made Revere Signature Copper Core Stainless Collection was discontinued when their Oneonta, Alabama plant was closed and all production was transferred to Asia.
Going To Pot
Though the thought of used cookware may not appeal to some, this line is the bee’s knees for several reasons. It’s attractive, functional timeless and durable. Its last-of-the-line significance also makes it a worthy investment as a collectible.
Taking A Shine
Though this set was well cared-for, some elbow grease was required to achieve its full visual potential. While Brasso is not recommended for silver, it will safely handle brass, copper, stainless, chrome, aluminum, pewter and bronze. Since the object of my project includes not only stainless, but brass handles on the pans and lids, Brasso makes restoring the shine a convenient, one-step process.
With ammonia for cleaning and the mild abrasive pumice for shine, Brasso works well on softer metals like aluminum and brass. With the increased hardness of stainless steel, mars and fine scratches consistent with use and storage will fade, but not be removed completely. There again arises the issue of character – each piece now has a bright, pewter-like luster consistent with its wear and age.
When completed, even the appearance of the copper core, visible between the two layers of stainless on the top edge of each pan, is highlighted. The improved look of the brass handles is the most dramatic step – successfully bundling an already fruitful sequence-of-shine.
There are some pricy powdered cleaners marketed specifically for stainless steel. For less than 3-bucks (US), Brasso did a commendable job safely restoring the shine on Revere‘s “Surgical Quality” stainless. While its effectiveness on aluminum and brass is more dramatic, as an all-around metal polish, it does precisely what the label claims.
Made in USA
Parsippany, NJ 07054