Pros and cons of nickel silver devices

A few decades ago nickel silver spoons and forks were practically the only ones available, so many used them. Today the choice is wider, and yet some still remain loyal to Melchior. Is this material practical? Does he have flaws?

What is melchior?

Melchior - an alloy of copper and nickel, which can also include other metals, such as iron, manganese, and zinc. In the last century, products made of such material were very, very popular and practically the only available for ordinary people.

By the way, Melchior got its name thanks to two French inventors who discovered this alloy: Mayo and Shore.

Advantages and disadvantages

For a start, it is worth listing the advantages of nickel silver devices:

  • Spoons of nickel silver do not heat up as quickly as, for example, silver, which is associated with the properties of the metals that make up the composition (the thermal conductivity of copper is slightly lower than silver).That is, if you dip the spoon into hot tea to stir sugar, then do not burn it when you get it.
  • Affordable price. Yes, such devices are much cheaper than, for example, silver ones. But at the same time they have about the same qualities, and even surpass them in some characteristics.
  • Attractive appearance. Instruments look really exquisite, and sometimes just gorgeous.
  • Security. Some believe that nickel silver is harmful and even dangerous, but this is absolutely not the case. The components of this alloy are present in the human body and perform certain important functions, so that even if their smallest particles enter it, they will not exactly cause harm. And in the environment, nickel does not emit any dangerous substances. In general, to be afraid and to be afraid precisely because of what.
  • Corrosion Resistance. In other words, nickel silver does not rust, which is good news.
  • Strength. Yes, this material can be called very durable. Spoons and forks do not bend even with a significant mechanical effect, such as aluminum or the same silver.
  • Durability. If you contact your parents or just decide to open an old trunk with family values, then among other things you will probably find a set of Melchior instruments.And you will be surprised to notice that time has not changed it at all. Yes, it is likely that a raid was formed on the surface, but it is easy to get rid of it if you know some secrets.

Now the cons:

  • Unfortunately, any nickel silver devices rather quickly lose their original appearance. And this is completely unrelated to care, as previously thought. Dark scurf that appears on the surface is the result of completely natural and inevitable oxidation processes. And this feature, of course, is a drawback, and a significant one.
  • Special care is required. Since the devices periodically darken, then, accordingly, they need to be cleaned regularly in order to return an attractive appearance.
  • Unfortunately, today it is not as easy to find devices made of melchior, as it was before. If, for example, in the USSR they were practically the only available for the majority of the population, then today they have ceased to be so popular, therefore they are not produced in such volumes or in such a form as several decades ago. And if you find a set in a regular store, then it probably will not be as exquisite as it was before.Of course, the times and tastes are changing, but those elegant spoons, forks and spatulas, which were used by our mothers, did not leave anyone indifferent.
  • Some may find that nickel silver devices are old-fashioned and completely irrelevant. But this disadvantage can be turned into dignity, if you count the Soviet spoon antique, not old.

How to care for such devices?

The main rules for the care of nickel-silver devices:

  1. How to clean the cupronickel cutlery? To do this, you can use toothpaste (or powder, if you can find it) or a special composition for cleaning jewelry made of silver and other metals. Chlorine and acid-containing products are best not to apply, otherwise a raid will form. Soda is also not suitable, it can leave rough scratches on the surface. But there are other effective and harmless ways. So, boil water and add to it the shell of two eggs (pre-crush it to a powdered state), as well as a tablespoon of salt. Immerse the devices in the boiling solution and boil for about two minutes, then remove and blot with a soft cloth. You can also use saline.To do this, add three to four tablespoons of salt to the boiling water and in this composition hold the spoons and forks of cupronickel for about two minutes. There is another method. Cover the bottom of the pan with foil, pour the water and bring it to a boil. Put the devices in the container, pour three tablespoons of salt and boil all together for three minutes. Instead of salt, you can use baking soda. You can also mix these two components in equal proportions. Alcohol will help to remove stains.
  2. To maintain brilliance and beautiful color for a long time, wash the devices with a soft cloth in a mild soap solution. It is better not to use ordinary detergents, their components may oxidize the alloy. Dipping forks and spoons in the dishwasher is also not recommended.
  3. After each wash, wipe each device dry, so that there is no water left on it (it will lead to plaque formation). In this case, in order to avoid scratches, it is desirable to use a soft cloth.
  4. It is advisable to store the kit in a special case that will protect the devices from oxidation, mechanical effects, dust and other contaminants. If there is no such box, you can wrap each spoon in a soft cloth.In any case, do not put appliances near household chemicals, as they oxidize and darken.
  5. If the device is badly scratched, then try to polish it carefully using soda, finely ground salt or fine-grained sandpaper.
  6. You should not store the kit in a wet room, in a plastic bag, as well as in an airtight container.

Let your devices serve for a long time and delight you with their elegance!

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