Before and after gold plating.
The second from the left is awaiting a new buffing and cleaning, seems there are spots on it, in back where you can't see it. But the customer is very picky. (Imagine the meanest Sergeant Major you ever heard about. Now imagine HIS boss. Yup, thats who I am fixing up these swords for! ) When I finish prepping it, it will look like the other three.
A lot of difficulty getting this gold to stick....it took a bath in muriatic acid to convince the gold to find a home. Toxic darned stuff that! I am coughing from the vapors from the neutralizing solution. And the gold solution. And the cleaning solution. And the buffing and polishing dust. All the hard polished hammer faces in my shop have turned green. I think that happens with chlorine.
I was asked by email why the Canadian Military has these old Air Force swords anyway. I mean, they must date back to the middle of the last century! Well, they use them to hold the flags down on the casket of fallen flying officers. They decided that using "army" swords was not really the right thing to do. So even though I am making, what, fifty cents an hour repairing these old swords, I think it is a privilege to do these swords up to where they should be.
I'll put a nice little photo essay up here in the next couple of pages, say, when I get some of these swords all proper and ready to go. There were many setbacks during this job.
click on the images to enlarge.
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