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Mar 23, 2023 - 8:49:48 PM



115 posts since 7/19/2018

Some polishing cloths you buy at your local music store say silver on them. I bought what turns out to be a silver polishing cloth for simple wipe downs of my new banjo after playing. Perhaps these silver cloths are not good for this? Will they eventually wear down the nickle plate if used too often? Are they meant specifically for silver, (flute for example)?

Mar 24, 2023 - 12:44:31 AM



508 posts since 12/30/2005


I believe all metal polishes (including cloths that are impregnated with polish) are to some degree abrasive, and should be used only rarely on banjo hardware, and absolutely never on gold-plated parts.
When I played a nickel-plated Stelling, I used Simichrome polish (as recommended by Geoff) and never had a problem with the plating polishing through, but I used it very gently and only when the nickel showed visible signs of oxidisation.
I think it's best to use just a clean, dry, soft cloth to wipe down the metal parts , ideally after every playing session, avoid touching the nickel with your fingers, and keep the banjo in its case when not being played.

Mar 24, 2023 - 3:58:27 AM



3125 posts since 1/15/2014

Unless your banjo is silver-plated, you should never use anything other than a plain cloth to wipe it down. If you need to clean the metal parts, use soap and water.

Mar 24, 2023 - 6:41:56 AM

2175 posts since 5/19/2018

What you have is an Emory cloth. Generally not good to use on banjos, ect. Good for silverware and silver plate.

On instruments, if you must clean them. Very soft cloth dampened with bottled water is about as far as I go.

Mar 24, 2023 - 7:17:09 AM



115 posts since 7/19/2018

Thanks for the feedback folks. Your replies confirm my suspicion. Fortunately I only used the cloth once on a small area. No harm done. Learning lesson.

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