Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums General `Bell Stuff` 90+ year old bell… Sell it polished or as found?

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    • #26315

      10″ fire engine bell solid brass.

      Should I eBay it polished or as found?

      I have a polishing kit for my bench grinder, salt & vinegar… But I don’t want to polish it if it’s not gonna increase the value.


    • #26471

      It can be argued both ways, and I personally have no opinion as to which would most likely increase the value. But here are the arguments:

      For tower bells, I argue against polishing, on the grounds that such a bell ought to look its age. (Simple cleaning is an entirely different matter.)

      But most fire engine bells were (and still are) polished on an almost daily basis as part of the routine of keeping working equipment in tip-top order.

      You don’t say whether your bell is chrome plated on the outside, as modern fire bells are. That would certainly deserve polishing.

      I suppose the bottom line is this: Would your efforts to polish it be fully repaid by an expected increase in value? (to which I hope others will respond)

    • #26476
      Neil Goeppinger

      A picture would help as we don’t know if it is covered with bird manure, or just has a dull patina. With no photo to help, I would likely polish a fire engine bell, since most of them are polished.

    • #26517

      Bob Cowie comments …

      I would not polish it, let the buyer do it if he wishes.
      All my bells are natural.

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