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  1. #1
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    To Clean Or Not To Clean!!

    I have some lead bullets such as a Brunswick Belted Ball, 480gr Westley Carbine, 530 gr Metford but they are fairly badly oxidised. The question is do I clean them, and if so what with? Any views, comments or advice would be appreciated.

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    Hi John,
    Always difficult to clean ore not to clean. Lead is verry hard to clean without grinding (use steel wool 000). I crease my lead bullets with acid free petroleum jelly to preserve them.
    Caution lead withe ore lead oxidation is verry poisonous so where a mask.

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    John P (4th December 2012)

  4. #3
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    Stopping lead oxidation is a nightmare for museums as well. About the only thing that can be done is to gently remove any surface oxide dust and then attempt to seal the lead with something. There are specialised waxes one can use, but for a small collection I would think any preservative wax would help. At least it is better than nothing.

    Regards
    TonyE

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    John P (4th December 2012)

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    Try a ultra sound cleaner, no abrasion just removes any dirt. As for preserving in a wax why noy use Waxol used on car bodies.

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    John P (4th December 2012)

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    I wonder if a clear-coat of the wife's fingernail polish would work to prevent oxidation? (could always test it out on a fishing weight)

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    John P (4th December 2012)

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    have you tried putting the bullets,not the cases,in vinegar for a couple of hours then wash off with a soft toothbrush?....I must admit I haven't tried this with lead but it works well with zinc and other alloys...hmmm got an old oxidized lead bullet I'll give it a try and let you know

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    John P (4th December 2012)

  12. #7
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    Well it works but not sure if to the desired effect,it's rather shiny now with all the dark patina gone as well...in just over 30 minutes

    PC040026.jpgPC040027.jpg

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    John P (4th December 2012)

  14. #8
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    Many thanks for all the advice, comments and suggestions. Much appreciated.

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    John P

    You also need to find an alternate place to store your cartridges. Most wood cabinets and/or shelves are very bad for lead bullets. Even cartridges that are in their original cardboard boxes or cartons will eventually get frosty. The same for many paper products like corrugated cardboard. The use of metal or plastic storage units and acid-free paper is recommended by most cartridge collectors.

    Get some brass or bronze wool to clean the outside. A good application of a paste wax will often help.

    Good Luck

    Ray

  16. #10
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    Thanks for this info Ray. I've recently obtained a metal "Bisley" cabinet and some plastic trays to store my collection in. I'll try the bronze wool and wax as well.

 

 
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