A while back my husband and I bought a few things through an on-line auction. The candleholders that we purchased were very ornate and looked to hold possibility for our online store. They appeared to need re-painting and a general good cleaning.
When they arrived I was not as impressed with the physical product as I was with the pictures in the on-line auction which is frequently the case. I proceeded to clean them up and as I was cleaning them I started checking to see what the candleholders were constructed from. I did the best test possible...I held a magnet to them. If the objects are molded metal, iron or something like that, then the magnet will stick to them, this would tell me that the candleholders would definitely need repainted. The magnet didn't stick.
I looked the item over and saw what appeared to be brass on the edges. I started doing a little scrubbing with steel wool and found that indeed, under all the paint, was brass. Well what do you know! My husband used his dremel tool to brush of all the paint and restore the candleholders to their beautiful brass finish. Some cleanup work, re-set the cabochons and now they are ready for sale.
You never know what treasures you may find!