Thu, 10 May 2012
Though you should never use a rock tumbler to clean collectible coins, there are times when a tumbler can help you in your metal detecting hobby.
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I used a rock tumbler to clean a few hundred dollars of dug clad coins and pennies that I've been saving for a few years. I don't save the zinc pennies since most of those that I find here have holes in them, deep pits in the surface or are missing parts of the rim. Most of the clad coins and nickels returned to their normal color and most of the pennies looked great too. There are always a few bad ones in the bunch though. I used some aquarium gravel, a bit of lemon juice, a few drops of liquid dish soap. Left them running for about 12 hours. Found instructions and formulas for the cleaning solution on the metal detecting forums that I read. The idea was to use the money for a new search coil, but I paid the electric bill instead. C'est la vie.