Notice I said “cruddy” coins, as this isn’t something you’ll probably want to do with coins of any value. However, if you’re like me then you have accumulated several cruddy coins that you can’t even see any detail in, the years of exposure to the elements all but deteriorating those details. “V” nickels are especially pron to this deterioration due to their poor alloy composition so let’s use a couple of these as I happen to have a few in this deteriorated condition.
First you’ll need a Dremel tool with a small polishing wheel, some Vaseline extra strength skin lotion, and a bowl of lightly soapy water and a soft towel. Now take the dry coin and put a generous amount of lotion on it, now use the polishing wheel at slow speed over the surface of the coin. This isn’t a quick process and you’ll have to repeat this process several times, rinsing the coin and drying it off between each polishing effort.
The first image is a 1902 “V” nickel that I just cleaned, prior to cleaning it was in pretty much the same condition as the 1905 below that I’ll be doing next. As you can see the 1902 cleaned up pretty good considering just how corroded it was in the beginning, at least now we can easily see the date and what detail was left on the surface of the coin. I have several other old coins that I’ll be cleaning as well that next time I stuck in the house with nothing else to do.
Cheers!….Hope this article helps, and as always, good luck and be safe out there!