Brass gone green, whut?

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Forum topic by Benvolio posted 09-25-2013 11:50 AM 1056 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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148 posts in 1350 days

09-25-2013 11:50 AM

I’ve been restoring an old Tyzack panel saw and went to polish up the old saw nuts

They cleaned up fine with a cocktail of white spirit and vinegar.

But the corrosion itself looked bluey/green and is that type of corrosion swells up space which makes me think its copper.

Any ideas, or is this normal for brass??

-- Ben, England.

4 replies so far

View racerglen's profile


3112 posts in 2199 days

#1 posted 09-25-2013 12:09 PM

Normal Ben, brass and copper both do it depending on the circumstance.
And by the color, you do have Brass nuts ;-)

-- Glen, B.C. Canada

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7084 posts in 2217 days

#2 posted 09-25-2013 01:32 PM

Brass is mostly copper. Vinegar is an acid.
Acid + copper = copper oxide.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees.

View Dark_Lightning's profile


2619 posts in 2528 days

#3 posted 09-28-2013 11:43 PM

Vinegar is dilute acetic acid. You made copper acetate, which is the color you see. If you haven’t cleaned it all off already, you can use toilet bowl cleaner that has the organic acids in it (not chlorinated ones) to dissolve the corrosion. It’s what is used for “pickle” when cleaning scale from copper after heating. A teaspoon in a pint of water will do the trick. Just be sure to rinse well after cleaning. Then spray a little lacquer or some protectant on the brass, if you don’t like patina. BTW, brass is an alloy comprised of mostly copper and zinc.

-- Random Orbital Nailer

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18 posts in 1125 days

#4 posted 10-02-2013 09:23 PM

Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. You are right that the corrosion you are observing is from copper but that doesnt mean the saw nuts are not brass.

-- Try to learn something about everything and everything about something - Thomas Huxley

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