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Silver cleaning with Aluminum and Soda


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So what do I know about this? I took a Chemistry A Level back in high school, so I looked up the chemical reaction formula. Basically, unprotected silver reacts with hydrogen sulfide to form silver sulfide. It is silver's way of oxidizing, what we know as rusting from iron. The opposite reaction is called a reduction, removing the sulfur from the silver again. To facilitate that, we need a reduction partner of lower 'preciousness' and water. I have no idea what we need the soda for except maybe to generate a suitable base environment (this is were my education gets foggy). Last thing is the boiling water - it has to be boiling - which delivers the activation energy to kick start the reaction (I like to think of it as of Superman's resurrection scene in Justice League...).


Science aside we need a bowl, I like to take a deep plate, some aluminum foil (easiest way to get aluminum), some soda. Also a spoon, a water cooker (and water) and some paper towel


To leave nothing to chance, I like to line the bowl with foil


then add a crumpled foil bed so the coin will touch aluminum while still being sufficiently surrounded by the base medium


We sprinkle over a couple spoonfuls of soda



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We place the coin in the bowl


By the way, we soaked that coin in soapy water then clear water ahead, removing a good deal of the grime


We then get our water to boil and pour it in

It needs to foam up. I had an experience with water that was not hot enough, not foaming up and the reaction  not starting.

We leave the coin in for a while, maybe 10 minutes, though I'm convinced that the main reduction takes place at the beginning.


I like to flip the coin half way in.


Edited by KevinFlynn
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  • 1 year later...

Helpful, thank you

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