1910 Wheat penny (reverse)
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Very interesting, Mokie....yeah, it doesn't look like the laundry cycle helped that Peace much at all.  I guess either silver reacts differently than copper and copper-nickel or that Peace is just too far gone to have the laundry cycle change it much.  Thanks for sharing the results and for undertaking the experiment!

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1 hour ago, Reme84 said:

What about the 1/4 cup of vinegar and 1 teaspoon of salt method? Has anyone tried that or is that not a good method?

NOT good for any coins that have numismatic value.

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Just now, Conder101 said:

NOT good for any coins that have numismatic value.

Yeah....that sounds pretty rough.  I wouldn't want to subject any coins to that particular chemical solution.

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Since there's all this chatter about "conservation" - one thing I've tried recently with dirty coins (literally.. dug them out of the yard) was distilled water in an ultrasonic cleaner.  I use a small zip lock, fill it about half way with distilled water then float it in the main bath.  Seems to get the debris off of it and I can't picture a way in which it would harm a coin... but I've been wrong before.. more than one... today...  :)

 

 

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4 hours ago, Reme84 said:

What about the 1/4 cup of vinegar and 1 teaspoon of salt method? Has anyone tried that or is that not a good method?

Somewhere I have some coins that I subjected to that madness many, many years ago.  A few pennies and some clad coins... fortunately, nothing of any value.  I'll see if I can find them and take some pics of the horror that they've become... lots of white on the silver portions, corrosion on the edges... I can blame it on youthful ignorance, but it's put me solidly in the "no way in hell" camp on this one now...

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I watched some video that it was good on copper coins. I was just curious! I think I’m going to try that coin and see what happens. Not sure which would be the fastest safest way. I will have to reread all the comments. Thanks a billion.

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3 hours ago, Thompson2 said:

Since there's all this chatter about "conservation" - one thing I've tried recently with dirty coins (literally.. dug them out of the yard) was distilled water in an ultrasonic cleaner.  I use a small zip lock, fill it about half way with distilled water then float it in the main bath.  Seems to get the debris off of it and I can't picture a way in which it would harm a coin... but I've been wrong before.. more than one... today...  :)

 

 

Thompson,

That's interesting to read......do you have any photos of any coins you have cleaned in that way?  I'd be very interested to see the results if you do.

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3 hours ago, Thompson2 said:

Somewhere I have some coins that I subjected to that madness many, many years ago.  A few pennies and some clad coins... fortunately, nothing of any value.  I'll see if I can find them and take some pics of the horror that they've become... lots of white on the silver portions, corrosion on the edges... I can blame it on youthful ignorance, but it's put me solidly in the "no way in hell" camp on this one now...

Those results sound pretty much like what I was picturing with that vinegar/salt solution (chemical solution...that cleaning method is not a solution to anything!)......that seems like it would just annihilate almost any coin subjected to it.  Photos of that would be good as well so people can see what that really does to coins.  I have to be honest.....I've never done it, but I cringed immediately when I read that vinegar/salt method.

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25 minutes ago, Reme84 said:

I watched some video that it was good on copper coins.

This may be a good place to point out that Youtube is full of videos that are loaded with error and misinformation.

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38 minutes ago, Reme84 said:

I watched some video that it was good on copper coins. I was just curious! I think I’m going to try that coin and see what happens. Not sure which would be the fastest safest way. I will have to reread all the comments. Thanks a billion.

Reme.....did you see this video on YouTube?  If so, do yourself a favor....do not watch YouTube videos to learn about coins.  YouTube videos can be very good for many things, but the the coin people on there are pretty much universally terrible.  They all seem to make inaccurate, sensationalist claims with no truth to them or suggest things like the vinegar/salt cleaning method, which is a veritable death solution for coins.  The only exception to this I'd say are the videos David Hall used to do when he was at PCGS.  Those have some good information, though they're likely a bit dated now in many respects.  The rest of them are even worse for the hobby than the guys who sell coins on TV, in my opinion.

Edited by Mohawk

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3 minutes ago, Just Bob said:

This may be a good place to point out that Youtube is full of videos that are loaded with error and misinformation.

Great minds think alike yet again Bob!

Edited by Mohawk

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7 hours ago, Thompson2 said:

Somewhere I have some coins that I subjected to that madness many, many years ago.  A few pennies and some clad coins... fortunately, nothing of any value.  I'll see if I can find them and take some pics of the horror that they've become... lots of white on the silver portions, corrosion on the edges... I can blame it on youthful ignorance, but it's put me solidly in the "no way in hell" camp on this one now...

 

4 hours ago, Mohawk said:

Those results sound pretty much like what I was picturing with that vinegar/salt solution (chemical solution...that cleaning method is not a solution to anything!)......that seems like it would just annihilate almost any coin subjected to it.  Photos of that would be good as well so people can see what that really does to coins.  I have to be honest.....I've never done it, but I cringed immediately when I read that vinegar/salt method.

Remember... you asked for it... A quarter, half dollar and penny.  The penny to me is the most interesting (even though it's ruined).  Look closely at the fields and you can see what I believe is the grain structure of the metal.  The vinegar (maybe lemon juice) preferentially etched the boundaries of the grains.

And keep in mind these coins (with the exception of the penny) were fairly new, circulated condition, not beat to hell from 100 years of abuse...

 

You've been warned...

 

 

You can still turn around...

 

Last chance...

 

Don't say I didn't warn ya...

 

 

 

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Edited by Thompson2

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4 hours ago, Mohawk said:

Thompson,

That's interesting to read......do you have any photos of any coins you have cleaned in that way?  I'd be very interested to see the results if you do.

Unfortunately I wasn't smart enough to take before pics, but there was just some crudation on these and some minor active oxidation.  They're also fairly heavily textured.  But this is how they looked after getting all shook up... details came out that weren't visible before, finish seemed more even... I'd be happy to run some coins for you if you had some that might benefit.

Coin 1.jpg

Coin 2.jpg

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Sometimes on pieces like that last one, it's a problem to discern the exact reverse details when there's enough mess surrounding them. I can understand wanting to make some of it go away.

The only thing I use lemon juice on is zinc, and then only when the corrosion is so repulsive the coin can have nearly no value no matter what I do.

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22 hours ago, Mohawk said:

 It's also interesting to hear about the durability of tokens regarding the cleaning methods being discussed. 

I don't want to leave any chance for misconception here, so let me add a few sentences for clarity. The tokens are not any less susceptible to hairlines than a coin of the same composition - as far as I know. The difference is that (at least some) token collectors are more forgiving of defects and issues, since many tokens are considered scarce to rare, or even unique, and it often comes down to a choice between owning a problem example, or none at all. Since I collect solely for the enjoyment of it, and have no plans to ever profit from my collection, I am one of those who is willing to accept some problems, whether pitting from corrosion, or microscopic hairlines from rubbing with a q-tip, just to be able to include an example in my collection. It is like the Bronze Disease link posted by JKK. You would never use a "stiff brush" or a "sharp needle" on a BU Morgan, but on a crusty Ancient, it is acceptable.

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Imagine a whole thread about coins, cleaning, crudulation, and so on, forty-four posts and counting, and not one single post about hippo muckspreading. I suspect shenanigans.

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15 hours ago, Thompson2 said:

 

Remember... you asked for it... A quarter, half dollar and penny.  The penny to me is the most interesting (even though it's ruined).  Look closely at the fields and you can see what I believe is the grain structure of the metal.  The vinegar (maybe lemon juice) preferentially etched the boundaries of the grains.

And keep in mind these coins (with the exception of the penny) were fairly new, circulated condition, not beat to hell from 100 years of abuse...

 

You've been warned...

 

 

You can still turn around...

 

Last chance...

 

Don't say I didn't warn ya...

 

 

 

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Wow Thompson....that's bad.  It's every bit as bad as I thought it would be.  Those coins are absolutely destroyed.  Can you imagine if someone had subjected something with history and value to the ol' vinegar and salt bath?  Like an ancient, or a piece of eight, or a nice old British copper coin......it would truly be a tragedy.  This settles it......the YouTube guys are now officially a bigger scourge on our hobby than the TV guys.   The ultrasonic cleaner, on the other hand......that looks like it did a great job of battling the crudulation.  That was one of the coins you found under the stump, right?

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1 hour ago, JKK said:

Imagine a whole thread about coins, cleaning, crudulation, and so on, forty-four posts and counting, and not one single post about hippo muckspreading. I suspect shenanigans.

You make a good point Jonathan.  I think it's because our little river's resident hippo hasn't show up here to sling *spoon* around but, since it doesn't seem right and this picture has been rather popular:

image.png.f651c25ae00a6d7434be1563235f919d.png

:) I know I feel better now

Edited by Mohawk

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5 hours ago, Just Bob said:

I don't want to leave any chance for misconception here, so let me add a few sentences for clarity. The tokens are not any less susceptible to hairlines than a coin of the same composition - as far as I know. The difference is that (at least some) token collectors are more forgiving of defects and issues, since many tokens are considered scarce to rare, or even unique, and it often comes down to a choice between owning a problem example, or none at all. Since I collect solely for the enjoyment of it, and have no plans to ever profit from my collection, I am one of those who is willing to accept some problems, whether pitting from corrosion, or microscopic hairlines from rubbing with a q-tip, just to be able to include an example in my collection. It is like the Bronze Disease link posted by JKK. You would never use a "stiff brush" or a "sharp needle" on a BU Morgan, but on a crusty Ancient, it is acceptable.

That's some good clarification, Bob.  I'm like you with my ancients....if the details are there, I'll take crusty and I actually like green copper....both of the Sestertii I currently have are green and one is lacquered.  But it's a beautiful coin and the details are great, so the lacquer doesn't bug me at all.  Like your token collecting my Faustina the Younger/Lucilla collection is a labor of love, something I'm building for enjoyment and to keep.  It's not an investment or anything.  But I know many people are concerned with that part of it and it's good that you mentioned all of this :).  We wouldn't want that budding Morgan collector to apply methods used with what yourself, Jonathan and I do with crusty ancients and tokens to their new Mint State acquisition because they decided that they didn't like the toning on the coin, or something like that.

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On 7/4/2019 at 2:56 PM, Mohawk said:

Wow Thompson....that's bad.  It's every bit as bad as I thought it would be.  Those coins are absolutely destroyed. 

 

The ultrasonic cleaner, on the other hand......that looks like it did a great job of battling the crudulation.  That was one of the coins you found under the stump, right?

Yeah.... I’m soooooo glad I never got my hands on anything “real”.  Can you imagine a 1928 Peace dollar subjected to the same horror?

 

And yes, that’s one of the coins I found buried under the tree.  I could see ultrasonics working wonders on ancients.  And combine it with something that you already use to clean the surface and I think you’d be surprised.  No stiff brushes or needles required in most cases.  Cheapie cleaners might not move a lot, but if you can find a cheap industrial unit, that’s the way to go.

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56 minutes ago, Thompson2 said:

Yeah.... I’m soooooo glad I never got my hands on anything “real”.  Can you imagine a 1928 Peace dollar subjected to the same horror?

 

And yes, that’s one of the coins I found buried under the tree.  I could see ultrasonics working wonders on ancients.  And combine it with something that you already use to clean the surface and I think you’d be surprised.  No stiff brushes or needles required in most cases.  Cheapie cleaners might not move a lot, but if you can find a cheap industrial unit, that’s the way to go.

Though I haven't gotten any really crusty ancients yet, I may have to explore the ultrasonic option if that day ever comes......and it likely will.  Where would I go about looking into such a thing?  I have no idea where to even start.  Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated!

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On 7/5/2019 at 5:25 PM, Mohawk said:

Though I haven't gotten any really crusty ancients yet, I may have to explore the ultrasonic option if that day ever comes......and it likely will.  Where would I go about looking into such a thing?  I have no idea where to even start.  Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated!

I got lucky with mine.  It was in need of repair and past its usable life at my office, so I was able to get it gratis, not including repair parts,  

 

I think for most coins, more power would be better.  The exception would of course be something that is being held together predominantly by the crudation and/or heavy corrosion.

Unless you’re doing a metric -ton of coins, smaller might be useful.  The one I’ve got is 8 quarts, I think, and is a pain for just coins.  Fortunately, I have a variety of items that need larger capacity. 

A few options that I like are:

- heaters - Nice to keep the solution (if you’re using something more than distilled water) hot.  Makes it more efficient.

- timer - so you don’t have to baby sit it.  Probably not necessary for coins, but I like to not having to worry about leaving it actively running.   The transducers have a lifespan... longer than you’ll probably ever need, but no reason to stress them unnecessarily 

- basket(s) - I probably wouldn’t put a nice coin straight into a basket, but they’re nice to keep stuff off the bottom of the reservoir.  Sometime I put something in that is to heavy to float just from the air in the ziplock 

- variable power - in case you have some more delicate pieces.

Industrial / lab surplus sales can be a good source for non-crappy units.

A word of caution - you may run across and be tempted by “de-ionized” water.  It sounds super cool and super pure.   Don’t use it.  It will actively dissolve your coins, copper in particular.  I may grab some from work and dunk a penny in it.  I’ve seen it destroy equipment, but I’ve never tried to quantify it with an experiment. Should be fun.

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21 minutes ago, Thompson2 said:

I got lucky with mine.  It was in need of repair and past its usable life at my office, so I was able to get it gratis, not including repair parts,  

 

I think for most coins, more power would be better.  The exception would of course be something that is being held together predominantly by the crudation and/or heavy corrosion.

Unless you’re doing a metric -ton of coins, smaller might be useful.  The one I’ve got is 8 quarts, I think, and is a pain for just coins.  Fortunately, I have a variety of items that need larger capacity. 

A few options that I like are:

- heaters - Nice to keep the solution (if you’re using something more than distilled water) hot.  Makes it more efficient.

- timer - so you don’t have to baby sit it.  Probably not necessary for coins, but I like to not having to worry about leaving it actively running.   The transducers have a lifespan... longer than you’ll probably ever need, but no reason to stress them unnecessarily 

- basket(s) - I probably wouldn’t put a nice coin straight into a basket, but they’re nice to keep stuff off the bottom of the reservoir.  Sometime I put something in that is to heavy to float just from the air in the ziplock 

- variable power - in case you have some more delicate pieces.

Industrial / lab surplus sales can be a good source for non-crappy units.

A word of caution - you may run across and be tempted by “de-ionized” water.  It sounds super cool and super pure.   Don’t use it.  It will actively dissolve your coins, copper in particular.  I may grab some from work and dunk a penny in it.  I’ve seen it destroy equipment, but I’ve never tried to quantify it with an experiment. Should be fun.

Thompson,

Thank you so much for that in-depth information! I really appreciate it greatly.  I'll keep an eye on the physical sciences department at the college where I adjunct when I go back to being active after I finish my dissertation....I may be able to find one that they want to discard as it sounds like something that they may have.  I guess I'll have to start making some friends with some Chemistry professors!  I'll also keep an eye out for lab sales as well.  My sister knows people that work in labs from her college days, so I'll pick her brain about this, too.  She may be able to put me onto a few leads, now that I have the info you provided :) 

Good to know about the de-ionized water as well!  The last thing I'd want to do is throw an 1,800 year old sestertius in there and annihilate it!  If you do undertake the experiment, please let us know what the de-ionized water actually does to a modern cent.  If I may make a recommendation, I think it'd be neat to try the experiment on both a pre-1982 copper cent and a post-1982 zinc cent.

Thank you again so very much for taking the time to post this and answer my questions with such excellent information.  I really appreciate it a ton :)

~Tom

Edited by Mohawk

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10 minutes ago, Thompson2 said:

A word of caution - you may run across and be tempted by “de-ionized” water.  It sounds super cool and super pure.   Don’t use it.  It will actively dissolve your coins, copper in particular.  I may grab some from work and dunk a penny in it.  I’ve seen it destroy equipment, but I’ve never tried to quantify it with an experiment. Should be fun.

If you do that experiment, be sure and document it with pictures. I would be interested in seeing those.

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5 minutes ago, Mohawk said:

Thompson,

Thank you so much for that in-depth information! I really appreciate it greatly.  I'll keep an eye on the physical sciences department at the college where I adjunct when I go back to being active after I finish my dissertation....I may be able to find one that they want to discard as it sounds like something that they may have.  I guess I'll have to start making some friends with some Chemistry professors!  I'll also keep an eye out for lab sales as well.  My sister knows people that work in labs from her college days, so I'll pick her brain about this, too.  She may be able to put me onto a few leads, now that I have the info you provided :) 

Good to know about the de-ionized water as well!  The last thing I'd want to do is throw an 1,800 year old sestertius in there and annihilate it!  If you do undertake the experiment, please let us know what the de-ionized water actually does to a modern cent.  If I may make a recommendation, I think it'd be neat to try the experiment on both a pre-1982 copper cent and a post-1982 zinc cent. 

Thank you again so very much for taking the time to post this and answer my questions with such excellent information.  I really appreciate it a ton :)

~Tom

Excellent!  After I posted, I worried that the best sources might be unavailable to you.  Mine had a bad heater that I was able to source from the manufacturer and install myself.  And if you have a small unit, you can just start with hot water in the reservoir and forego the heater completely.   

You read my mind on the potential “victims” of the experiment.  I have a feeling the zinc will go even faster than the copper.  And depending upon how dramatic the results are with the pennies, I may try a clad and maybe a nickel.

And really, this is a very minor contribution to a large, generous community.

 

5 minutes ago, Just Bob said:

If you do that experiment, be sure and document it with pictures. I would be interested in seeing those.

Oh heck yeah!  I’m hoping for Swiss cheese!  Lol

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2 minutes ago, Thompson2 said:

Excellent!  After I posted, I worried that the best sources might be unavailable to you.  Mine had a bad heater that I was able to source from the manufacturer and install myself.  And if you have a small unit, you can just start with hot water in the reservoir and forego the heater completely.   

You read my mind on the potential “victims” of the experiment.  I have a feeling the zinc will go even faster than the copper.  And depending upon how dramatic the results are with the pennies, I may try a clad and maybe a nickel.

And really, this is a very minor contribution to a large, generous community.

 

Oh heck yeah!  I’m hoping for Swiss cheese!  Lol

If you want another potential victim for this experiment, Thompson, you could also try a copper-plated steel Canadian cent.  That would be an interesting one! 

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4 minutes ago, Mohawk said:

If you want another potential victim for this experiment, Thompson, you could also try a copper-plated steel Canadian cent.  That would be an interesting one! 

Hmmm...  I’ll have to check my “funny money” stash from when I used to travel a lot to see if I lucked upon one of those...

I’ll have to make sure I can get a decent quantity of DI water for multiple coins.  I’ll want to dunk them individually.

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On 7/4/2019 at 2:28 AM, Thompson2 said:

 

Remember... you asked for it... A quarter, half dollar and penny.  The penny to me is the most interesting (even though it's ruined).  Look closely at the fields and you can see what I believe is the grain structure of the metal.  The vinegar (maybe lemon juice) preferentially etched the boundaries of the grains.

And keep in mind these coins (with the exception of the penny) were fairly new, circulated condition, not beat to hell from 100 years of abuse...

 

You've been warned...

 

 

You can still turn around...

 

Last chance...

 

Don't say I didn't warn ya...

 

 

 

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So this is the result of the vinegar/salt or the ultrasonic deal I was hoping to find out about? Because I tried vinegar long ago and it made my Copper Lincoln's an unnatural shade of orange and ate right through the Zinc ones.

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So can somebody post a photo of what one of these ultrasonic machines would look like please? This is the 1st I've heard of them and have pretty much given up on experimenting with different chemical agents to clean what could be nice coins if not for a few blemishes, so I have too many Copper Lincoln's in bags waiting to be melted into ammo during the Zombie Apocalypse. I'm sure that maybe I could make one of these machines if I could see the general appearance and workings of one. 

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5 hours ago, KarenHolcomb said:

 I have too many Copper Lincoln's in bags waiting to be melted into ammo during the Zombie Apocalypse. I'm sure that maybe I could make one of these machines if I could see the general appearance and workings of one. 

Yep, you are definitely from below the Mason-Dixon line. B|

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