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Does My Mirror Need Re-silvering or Not?

Mirror resilvering,how to resilver a mirror,resilvering mirrors

It is unbelievable to think of any one not owning a mirror! In fact, people own several at a time. Over the course of time, mirrors get damaged, broken, etc. A simple mirror that seems just a rectangular piece of glass without any fancy framework or beveling can be replaced easily; it is not a very costly affair. For instance, bathroom mirrors exhibit signs of deterioration at the bottom edges sometimes. This is the result of improper sealing or incorrect installation. Now, since the mirror is being used in the bathroom, it is not going to be a very fancy affair; so, a new one can be bought. Otherwise, get a local glazier to cut of the damaged portion and remount the mirror. A third option is to frame the mirror to hide the damaged portions.

The same option of replacement cannot be considered where an antique piece is being considered, however. Even if the pattern of the glass seems rather wavy or the beveling is uneven or small air bubbles are present, it does not matter. You would definitely think of something like re-silvering to retain that “old look”; more so if your mirror also exhibits additional engravings or fancy etchings. And on the whole, re-silvering of antique mirrors comes much cheaper than buying new ones. And if you are apprehensive about the total value coming down because of this process, well, don’t be! The glass is still the same original one, and so the resale value will increase.

Okay, when does your mirror cry out for re-silvering?

When the antique displays dirt marks or streaks on the front surface, it is indicating that the silver back-up needs to be re-done. Of course, you will know the truth about whether it is plain filth or deterioration when you clean your mirror really well. But in your enthusiasm to get it “spotless and shining”, do not go in for scrubbing pads, powdered cleansers, and so on. These abradants will leave their stamp on the surface, and these will stand out after re-silvering. So, handle your precious relic gently.

This self-cleaning may result in your wanting to do more for your mirror, such as “silver painting” the bare spots. We have only one bit of advice for you—“Don’t!” There is a professional method to re-silvering, which you may not be aware of. Yes, there is some amount of expenditure involved too, but you have to pay up if you want your antique to be rejuvenated! Do not try to tape tin foil on the portions where the silver is missing either!

The bottom line here is that an antique mirror requires re-silvering in total; patching up just will not work. And the process cannot be speeded up if the result has to be first-class!


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