How to clean sea shells.

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Old 08-31-19, 07:40 AM
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How to clean sea shells.

Hello, I make sea shell windchimes for a hobby. I need to clean large quantities of shells safely & effectively. Can any one help ?
 
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Old 08-31-19, 07:56 AM
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Boiling them is typical. Some soak them in water/bleach before boiling. Others lay them out for months in the sun and let insects do their job before boiling them.
 
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Old 08-31-19, 09:10 PM
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How to clean sea shells.

Thanks for your reply.Most of the shells I use are empty but need the algae cleaning off the outer surface. I already soak them in a bleach solution.then scrub them with a wire brush.This is a very labourious job. I have read that some people use a Muriatic (Hydrochloric) Acid solution. Any thoughts ?
 
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Old 09-01-19, 02:04 AM
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Boiling them after soaking, as X mentioned, should clean off most things you're scrubbing now.
 
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Old 09-01-19, 08:08 AM
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1) Wash in dishwasher with white vinegar.
2) polish by tumbling in dry sand

Take the bottom rack of your dishwasher, turn it upside down to create a flat place to arrange whatever-you-need-to-clean; here layout the shells on a towel or cloth.
On the TOP rack, pour a half gallon of dollar store white-vinegar into a mixing bowl, place it on the top rack- this will dispense weak acid throughout the wash cycle.
Run the dishwasher on "heavy" setting. Make sure to let cool before opening. otherwise the shells might crack.

Tumble the shells in dry sand to polish-.
If you can find one, use a cement mixer and 25 lbs of sand.
Smaller sized option is a large steel coffee can using a BBQ rotisserie.
(Doubles as a peanut roaster if you add heat)
 
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Old 09-01-19, 08:18 AM
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Not sure about that Hal. Those shells are pretty delicate. I'd think he'd end up with a million broken pieces if he put them thru all that!
 
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Old 09-01-19, 08:40 AM
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Nah,

Mollusk shells, like human bone, are a miracle of bio-engineering

The bulk components of shells and bone are calcium-carbonate/sulfate "chalk" and hydrated collagen,"jello".

However, when you combine these at the molecular level, bones and seashells achieve the similar engineering tolerance and strength as strong a machined aluminium - the stuff gearheads use to make high-performance F1 engine blocks, pistons and connecting rods.
 
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Last edited by Hal_S; 09-01-19 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 09-01-19, 08:42 AM
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Okay, perhaps you were joking, lol!
 
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