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Old 05-29-2021, 01:09 PM
OldSchool OldSchool is offline
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Default Cleaning Vintage Zildjian

I was recently gifted a vintage kit that included a vintage Zildjian cymbal. The underside of the cymbal is in bad shape, cosmetically speaking, with stains and "crud" everywhere. I've cleaned a fair amount of vintage cymbals in my time but none in the sad shape of this one. Just hoping to get some suggestions on what might be the best procedure or product to address this condition. Thanks in advance for your time and your help!
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Old 05-29-2021, 02:49 PM
shackman shackman is offline
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Default Re: Cleaning Vintage Zildjian

First, congratulations on the score!

There is a difference between oxidation (patina) and filth/grime. I think that it's really gross when a cymbal has decades of Lordonlyknows, just my opinion. Anyway back to your question - I find that soaking a disgustingly dirty cymbal in a solution of hot water and dish soap works really well. Not much dish soap, and I use a plant-based one like Seventh Generation. An overnight soak followed by using a non-scratch sponge (soft side) can do the trick. Gently follow the lathing lines. However, I have let some soak much, much longer (changing out the water daily). You retain the oxidation this way, but most of the grime goes away.
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:57 PM
vyacheslav vyacheslav is offline
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Default Re: Cleaning Vintage Zildjian

I say leave it. It has good mojo and good stories to tell.

When I acquire a used cymbal, I clean it with Windex and paper towels. This gets off all the surface dirt and grime, but doesn't mess with the mojo. Sometimes you'll need to do it several times, until the paper towels are clean. Anything that doesn't come off with Windex, I just leave, because I think it's supposed to be there.
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