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Hard, Putty-like Material Inside A Bottle

slugplate

Well-Known Member
Jul 7, 2016
391
63
Hi Everyone, I've run into an issue cleaning a Civil War Era bottle. Inside the bottle is a hard putty-like substance that is not being cooperative with my cleaning attempts. It just won't let go. I do not want to use any kind of aggressive cleaning approaches and I'm wondering if you have any ideas of how this substance can be broken up or dissolved without manually chipping it away. It's not something I want to mess with, obviously, since I've dug only three Civil War Era bottles. I'd greatly appreciate your expertise.
 

slugplate

Well-Known Member
Jul 7, 2016
391
63
Got pics?
Thanks for replying, unfortunately it's black glass and the only way I found it was holding it up to the sun to check for any cracks and a small piece fell out. I had this problem once before with a small, clear bottle and was able scrape it away... it certainly wasn't as valuable as the Civil War Era bottle, which I want to be ultra-careful.
 

embe

Well-Known Member
Jul 14, 2019
86
8
Might be worth trying to soak the small piece that fell out (in water, solvent, etc.) before trying the whole bottle. Could be something as simple as a longer soak time needed.
 

Harry Pristis

Well-Known Member
Jul 24, 2003
933
18
Northcentral Florida
Might be worth trying to soak the small piece that fell out (in water, solvent, etc.) before trying the whole bottle. Could be something as simple as a longer soak time needed.

I understand the caution, but it should be unnecessary because these common solvents won't damage glass. Let the solvent sit in a corked bottle for a week, or so. Shake or swirl the contents occasionally. Residual traces of softened gunk can be scraped away with a length of 10 gauge, threaded copper wire. The copper is softer than the glass, and normally will not scratch the glass.


copper_wire_brush.jpg
 

Patagoniandigger

Well-Known Member
Jan 16, 2020
181
28
Far away South: Argentina
Some substance melt at low temperature. It will sound nuts. If have two different size recipients that you can put the whole bottle inside the smaller and this Inside the bigger in s way to avoid contact . Fill it all with water. Heat very slowly controlling the temperature of the bottle. It could be melted.
 

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