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Homemade ultrasonic cleaning soap

Has anyone made or used a homemade cleaning soap for the ultrasonic?

Regular Dawn with a dash of ammonia!

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Thanks Tony will give it a try.

Quick note: when I purchased my GemOro 2.6 quart ultrasonic, with a stainless steel interior, the instructions clearly advise NOT to use ammonia as it would void the warranty. I’m aware this is not a professional model, but I don’t need anything larger in
my little studio.
Just sayin’…


Good to know. I just figured there has to be a more economical way to clean jewelry.

i was using expensive ultrasonic cleaners for nearly 20 years. started using washing up liquid 5 months ago and not noticed any difference!

I would think any good grease cutting detergent like dawn as mentioned above would work. I was wondering about the suds it would create, a overflowing washing machine image comes to mind. Guess I’ll just have to remove my current detergent and give it a shot.

Quick word of warning, use a PH Neutral cleaning solution.
If your tank gets eaten through (pin holes) it’s not a warranty problem.
You can use plain water in your tank and glass jars holding pickles and cleaning brews.

To avoid ammonia coming in contact with the sides of the tank: fill tank with plain water. Use a little plastic dish like a yogurt cup to contain your water, ammonia, liquid soap mixture. place your dirty item in the solution in the yogurt cup and place that to float around in the water bath. the ultrasound waves will penetrate the plastic cup and you will clean your piece in isolation and not contaminate your water bath.

Glass is far more conductive of ultrasonic waves than plastic, thus a better choice.

I have used cheap liquid dish detergent and cheap (not sudsy) ammonia in my very old Bransonic unit for at least 35 years with no problems. Definitely do not use any cleaners with chlorine in them. It will definitely etch pits in the stainless steel. If you are cleaning silver with antiquing or a patina do not use the ammonia because it will remove those features.

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There are some great tips in this thread.
Are there any general guidelines for untrasonic use?
I’ve treated myself to a 30L unit and, at least initially, I’d like to use it for
some tarnishing silver fold forms and some copper as well in prep for enameling.
Perhaps I should add that this may be better posed in a new question/thread.
I’ve been a member for years but never posted.
Thanks, Rick

I have always used STP (sodium triphosphate) with sometimes a dash of sodium silicate. I know that STP and STPP acquired a large negative cachet due to eutrophication issues, but they seem to have been recently rescinded.

what is the purpose of the sodium silicate?

I noticed that soluble silicates were in most tsp and replacement tsp cleaning products, so I tried it in my tumblers. I got the impression that I was much less likely to get staining from iron compounds with the silicate present, and had fewer problems with my ancient silicone rubber buffers breaking up to infect the solution with colloidal rubber. I was sometimes asked to tumble jewellery and metalsmithing items which had iron or steel clasps or hinges. Having said that, in sterling silver applications, I doubt that it actually matters much at all.