Butler Finish Nickel

What is butler finish nickel and how is the finish applied?


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Q. What is “butler finish nickel?” How does one apply this finish? –B.A.

A. The butler finish is a fine satin-like finish. The finish originally resulted from the regular cleaning and polishing of fine silverware. It was named the butler finish because a butler would polish the silver often and fine lines developed on the silver pieces. One way to produce the finish is to wet scratch the surface with a suitable wire brush. An easier way is to buff the surface using fine grit and greaseless buffing compound. The type of nickel bath is important. Bright nickel baths give a finish that is too glossy so a dull or semi-bright bath is used. 

Since you have not previously used this process, I suspect you will have to do some experimentation with the conditions in order to get the most satisfactory results.

A second way of producing this finish is to hire a contract butler and have he/she polish the pieces for you!