Femorale - +25 Years
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Ted W. Baer on 05/09/2006
I am very impressed by the real cleaning power of such a simple device, I think I will buy one soon. Thank you for draw our attention to such useful machine!! Ted

Ultrasonic Cleaner by Marcus Coltro

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I started collecting shells in 1976 and at that time I used a dental pick to clean them, a task which took me hours to clean a dirty Astraea, for example. After Femorale was founded we bought several Dremel Tools which made the job much easier (ok, more than easier now since two boys do all the cleaning...).

Years ago my dentist suggested to me that an ultrasonic cleaner (the one they use to remove tartar) could probably be used to clean shells as well. It sounded like a good idea but since it was quite expensive here I did not pursue the idea of buying one.

At the COA convention in June 2006 I kept hearing that familiar annoying noise (it gets worse if you have the sound coming from your mouth!) and went to look where it was coming from Lee Kremer of Shell Lovers, Inc. who was selling the machine and showing people how it worked. I was so convinced of the ease of use that I brought one of them back home and made several tests.

I can tell you this: damned Dremel! The cleaner works very well and much better than an abrasive bur on the shell's surface. Luckily I had some very dirty Astraea to make the first tests and the results were fantastic. Even the color looked better since the surface was not eroded by a bur.

I was able to remove incrustation from shells with periostracum without any harm to it. Shells with fine crevices were not affected as well. I tested cleaning the same species using both systems (UC and Dremel) and the difference is amazing!

If you cannot afford to buy an unit yourself, maybe you can tell your shell club and buy one to share with other members. Our unit is attached directly to a tap, but Lee has a portable plastic tank so you can move it around and work in places without direct water supply.

If you are interested, contact Lee at lvk@citrisurf.com or visit his site:
http://www.citrisurf.com/shell/cleaner.htm to see more details (Mention to Lee that you saw this article here and get 10% discount!



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