Cleaning brass has been one of my greatest pleasures. What was dull, dirty and neglected is suddenly transformed into something shining, brilliant and cared for.  What other activity can display such obvious progress so quickly? My understanding of the benefit of brass cleaning started at school when we would huddle in the boot room cleaning the brass  fittings of our cadet corps belts and gaiters.


We used Brasso. It was excellent.

Japan does not use brass. Indeed has never used brass it would appear.  I do not know why not, but there it is. Therefore it is impossible to find brass cleaner of the likes of Brasso in Okinawa. I finally track down a product that is used for polishing trumpets and other, er, brass instruments. It is hopeless.

My boat is infested with brass, all of which is much tarnished. Let’s look at the lamps. The boat has two archaic paraffin lamps which are clearly catering to the romantic. Notwithstanding I can imagine the pleasure of being at anchor on some obscure Japanese island reading to the light of paraffin lamps.


One of the mantles is busted

So I try to clean up the lamps. My big breakthrough comes with the use of very fine wire wool.


I yearn tragically for Brasso

Not wonderful but my lamps are looking much better. Alladin?

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7 Responses to Brasso

  1. Rosemary says:

    Fine sand, salt and a halfed lemon is what Auntie Bella used. Works but not as satisfying as Brasso.

  2. Alan says:

    I’d guess that those lamps are brass-plated rather than solid brass. I’d advise the rapid retirement of that wire-wool before all the brass is rubbed off! I’d be happy to send you some Brasso, maybe put it in a sealed plastic pouch to make posting easier – though a tin would be more redolent of ancient times.

  3. calderi says:

    Heinz Tomato Ketchup is said to be a good way to start the process. Leave it on until the chips are done, then scrape it off and have it for lunch with a chilled Moselle, or meths. Apparently it really works.

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