Cleaning Turquoise & Silver Jewelry

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To clean turquoise and silver jewelry, use Tarn-X, a toothbrush and an end brush. Learn more about how to clean turquoise and silver jewelry from a professional bench jeweler and gemologist in this free video on cleaning jewelry.

Part of the Video Series: Cleaning Jewelry
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Chuck Koehler with Anthony Jewelers in Nashville in Tennessee and the question was how to clean Sterling silver in turquoise jewelry, I'm going o show you how we do it. Alright, now the materials that I like to use when I clean silver jewelry, and I've been doing this for about thirty years now and I've used the same method. I like Tarn-X, I like a toothbrush and an end brush. But about ten years ago, there's been a new product come along that I really like as ell, that you an find in most stores and it's called Connoisseurs Jewelry Wipes. We're taking this Sterling silver, very heavily tarnished Sterling silver and turquoise bracelet, and we're going to clean it. Now, first thing we're going to do is, we're going to take Tarn-X, which can be bought at any grocery store and it's just right in the cleaning aisles and most people associate it, right beside the Brasso. So we're going to open this up, pour some of it, into a little jar, it doesn't take a lot. Now what you've got to understand about Tarn-X, is this is a very caustic material, and just literally seconds, is all it takes, okay. Now we're going to a take a little bit of the end brush, like this right here. We're going to dip it in the Tarn-X and I'm going to very carefully paint it on here, because I really don't want it to touch the turquoise. But you can start to see, that just painting it on, it's already starting to work. Now you can rinse it off, okay. The key with Tarn-X is, it's going to do it's work within the first two to three seconds, leaving it on any longer is not going to really change that. So now I want to rinse it off and then start over again, okay. And with something that's as heavily tarnished as this is, it's probably going to take several passes. Now I can take a toothbrush and get aggressive in here with it. And that's about it, right there. now, take a look, you can already see that the, you can see the silver color coming back. And let's do it again. Once again, it's getting better. Now I'm going to do this for about ten more minutes and then I'll show you what the rest of the steps look like, as we get closer to the end. Okay,now I've spent about ten minutes with Tarn-X, and just putting it on, leaving it on for a minute, with a little brush, getting in there, rinsing it off, putting it on, rinsing it off. Don't get in a hurry when you're doing this because you really have to be careful and limit the exposure of the Tarn-X getting around these stones. So now, now this piece, it was designed, you don't want to go, you don't want to remove all of the tarnish from this because it wasn't designed to be shinny silver. It was supposed to have the dark recesses with the polished highlights on the top. So now we're going to switch over to the Connoisseurs Jewelry Wipes. And these things, it's actually a dry cloth, it's about this big, right here, okay, and watch what happens right here. Alright, now look at this side, and look at the side I haven't done. Now watch this, let's do this side, it takes just a second, look at that. Now look at this cloth, see this dark on the cloth, that's actually not dirt, that is strictly a chemical reaction, that is occurring between the cloth and this piece of silver you're working on. When you look at this piece and you look at the before and after, you can see the dramatic change that occurred. And the piece looks beautiful and somebody is going to look good at the Rodeo tonight. And that is how you clean silver jewelry with turquoise in it.


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