Granate


Restoring a grenade 7

…the sharpener called grenade, not a real grenade.

Or should that be ‘How not to restore a grenade’? – you’ll see why.

The age and the name of this sharpener even fit with the current 100th anniversary of Britain’s involvement in WWI, which is being commemorated on a national and on a local level – with local museums and libraries in and around Preston (where I live) taking part.

The grenade sharpener design has been around since 1847 [1]see Lexikaliker: Granate and is still being sold today. I got a modern one, which Lexikaliker got me five years ago when I wasn’t able to get one in the UK.

Before cleaning

Before cleaning

Cleaning

A few days ago I also got my hands on an old version – I was lucky enough to get one for a good price.

First task: clean it. I bought the metal polish used during a previous trip to Germany, after a tip from Lexikaliker on how to clean old brass.

Old Grenade

Before cleaning

Problem

Unfortunately something went quite wrong. There was a band of oxidisation after I left the sharpener in the metal polish over night. It now looks as if there’s a dent where this band was. Brass is missing in this dent, which is difficult to see on the photos, but quite obvious in reality.

After cleaning

After cleaning. Look between the R and the A to see the problem.

I have two ideas as to what might have caused this.

  1. The brass composition was different where this band /dent is, so the polish could ‘erode’ the material there. This explanation seems unlikely.
  2. I shouldn’t have but the blade and the screw in the same polish. Maybe the metal somehow reacted with the polish which made it ‘corrode’ the brass.

Ok. I got to live with my mistake now, but if I ever get another chance I will keep the blade and screw separate.

Next problem: The blade. It seems slightly too short to cut into the wood. I’ll talk about that another time.

After cleaning

After cleaning. The problem is visible on this side, too.

 

References