I just picked up a set of Revere Ware copper bottom pots at a yard sale...for $1.00! I cleaned them all up bright and shiny with the same stuff I use on my brass bathroom sink, Cameo copper, brass and porcelain cleaner which costs about $1.25 at my local grocery store.
I just posted about the sandpaper too,when people think of sandpaper they think of the rough stuff.There is a sandpaper out there that is 1000 grit and 1,500 grit,you have to get the right type.It's called wet/dry 1000 grit sandpaper,it's the type used to wet sand and buff out imperfection in the paint after a car is painted.I use this method and I promise you it does not scratch your pans.You have to REMEMBER to run a trickle flow of water over the pan as your wet sanding it.It's more like a rubbing method but it WILL NOT SCRATCH YOUR PANS.If it does than you have used the wrong grit,it has to be 1000 grit or 1,500 wet/dry sandpaper,it is a very very fine sandpaper grit.Once you use this method you will never bother with others again,it works on the inside and the outside of the pan.
I have the solution to your problem,this will work on the copper bottom & the inside that was burned from water,milk excetera.My husband is a body work man fixing & painting cars,when he paints cars afterwards he has to wet sand & buff the paint to get out imperfections.He uses a 1000 grit or 1,500 grit sandpaper,it's really fine grain.I use it on the inside & the out side of my Revereware pans,you have to let a slow flow of water run on it the whole time your scrubbing.It does not scratch the pans because it's such a fine grain of sandpaper.I promise you it will not scratch & they come out looking brand new,you have to remember to run a trickle of water over it as your scrubbing.Your wet sanding the burnt stuff & film off the pan,if it works on car paint without scratching it will work on your pans.I have been useing this method for 20 years now with perfect looking pans.You can get the sandpaper at the hardware or automotive store,ask for 1000 grit to 1,500 wet dry sandpaper,it don't take much scrubbing neither.I promise you will never go back to any other way again after useing this method.
Before anyone says: "Yikes! Sandpaper? Are you kidding me?"
I heard this tip on a cooking show on a San Francisco radio station. And it really works well, without scratching the copper. I was amazed myself!
I've had to do a lot of this lately.
First, do a thorough cleaning with Bar Keepers Friend-- on the stainless steel and the copper. Don't spend a lot of time on the copper because that's Step 2.
Step 2: Get on down to the local hardware store and pick up a sheet of 600 grit wet/dry sandpaper. Cut off a piece around 2" square and keep everything wet. Then scour the copper with the sandpaper. That copper will shine like you won't believe...
(Maybe going to the hardware store should have been step number 1?)
I'm not sure if this will help you, but my mother taught me how to clean and brighten copper bottoms of our Revere Ware pots and pans.
Wet the copper bottom and sprinkle vinegar (any kind) on it. Then sprinkle regular salt on top of the vinegar and scrub with a sponge. The chemical reaction of the vinegar and salt removes tarnish from the bottom.
Maybe this will help, I hope.
Try soaking the pots in a sink or dish pan in hot water and powder dish washer detergent, about 1 cup to a sink full. What works on the inside will probably work on the outside. Soak overnight, then scrub.
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