I love my ultrasonic, although I am on my second ultrasonic cleaner
as the part that produces the ultrasonic failed in the first one.
I use dish washing liquid and ammonium hydroxide (ammonia in water,
as ammonia is a gas), both mixed into water. I always forget how
nasty the "ammonia"is, always intending that the next time I mix it,
I’ll do it outside - but never remember! Perhaps I should write
myself a note on the bottle. I heat the solution to 50 degrees
Celsius and use with the ultrasonic for “hardy” stones, but for more
fragile stones such as opal, turquoise, emerald, tanzanite, etc, I
just use the heat of the solution, and brush the pieces with a
softnylon toothbrush. I have tried just using a heated solution of
dish washingsoap and water, but I’ve never yet managed to
effectively clean polishing compound off, without the “ammonia”.
My second machine came with a stainless steel basket, which I was
thrilled about, as the first one didn’t have a basket. However, I no
longer use it, asthe action of the ultrasonic moving the sterling
jewellery against the stainless steel was actually scratching the
silver, or at least making it frostyin appearance (but not in a nice
way), and this was after I had done the final polish! Do other
people use stainless steel baskets in their ultrasonics? I’m going
to have to rig up a similar method that I used with my first
machine, which was a couple of wires across the top, hooked over the
edge, withmy jewellery pieces suspended from “S” shaped sterling
hooks which hang offthe top wires and suspend the jewellery just
under the surface of the solution.
I could do with a gizmo for removing tarnish though, as I only work
in sterling silver.