This has been a subject of conversation between my Dad and I for years!
It’s been a common issue with his cymbals, usually the bits he gets with drum kits that have been mistreated that he restores and moves on.
We had spoken about using a whole heap of different methods and products to get a decent result but just never yielded anything worth chatting about. He could get them back to a fairly tidy state but he was never happy.
Thats when, after a friend Tony who I must say Is the man to speak to in regards to cleaning anything set me on the oven cleaner path. I’ve used it on quite a number of things lately and i’d stress that you need to take great care when dealing with this stuff as it’s very very nasty for you but can also ruin the finish on things if you leave it on for too long so ensure you’re on the ball when cleaning with it.
I used a reasonable amount but ensured there was no more than five minutes of contact and it gave very good results!
Once hosed down I used some steel wool ( from the kitchen with the soap built in ) and followed the construction of the cymbal to run the wool around and around and hose off and go again, a total of three runs showed the fruits of our labour!
To finish I dried the cymbals completely and gave them a really good polish with some meguaiars next generation metal polish. I used two rags as this also pulls off a little grime when you work the polish in and I think a third pass with another clean rag would really finish the cymbals off!
All in all this is a very easy, fast and cheap method to clean cymbals or anything related that needs a clean up.