Green marks all over my cymbals


New member
The cymbals I play with live have green marks all over them. It looks like the beginnings of rust, and its just from playing shows and having sweat/water fly all over my stuff. They are Zildjian Z Customs and Avedis. I tried the special Zildjian cleaner on my ride and it seemed to just make it look silver almost and didnt really help with the green marks. I follwed the directions perfectly and I was very disappointed. Now I'm looking for a cleaner that will make my stuff look new again. I have heard some of you talking about Groove Juice and some other products, and I was wondering if those would work even though the Zildjian cleaner did not?


New member
the green is oxidation from the copper in the cymbals. i dont clean my cymbals so i cant help you there.


New member
only thing i can see here is that you've lost out on some good cymbols. you need to wipe your cymbols at the time, between songs, after the show and clean the regularly to stop the residue building up, that's what will be eating into your cymbols...


New member
ive got some Zildjian ZBT high hats i used to only use for shows as a side hat but since ive downgraded they are now practice hats. they are COVERED in little green dots haha. but since the're my practice hats i could care less.

but if i remember right on some cymbals a cleaned a few years ago i used groove juice. it didnt take it all off but it got most of it. if i remember correctly. i could be wrong.


New member
The technical name for it is patina. It's a combination of the oxidation of the copper, dirt, and water that you've gotten on the cymbal. It's a natural thing to happen, and nothing to be upset about. If you want your cymbals to sound "darker" and more defined, then you should do nothing and let the patina continue to build up. I have a 1963 Avedis Zildjian 20" Ride that hasn't been cleaned in at least 15 years, and it's one of the most amazing-sounding cymbals I've ever heard.

But all that said, if you do want to clean it, Groove Juice or Zims is the way to go. But follow the directions EXACTLY. Keep in mind, both of these cleaners are weak acid. They will burn your hands (after prolonged exposure), they will discolor linens and towels, and most importantly: They WILL take your logos off your cymbals if you scrub with any pressure. Try your best not to scrub the logos off your cymbals during the cleaning process. I used to use Q-Tips around the logos to keep them looking good.

Good luck.


New member
I use Zildjian A custom Cymbals and I really like a little darker then they come but at the same time.. i like them to look fairly nice but also like theyve aged to perfection. I clean my cymbals but only spot clean when water gets on them or powder or dirt.. i like to let them "marinate" in what ive done to them and let them age a little bit so that they settle to be perfect cymbals.. thats just my.. i have used groove juice and it worked pretty good for me.. might take a little extra effort on the really deep parts but you should be satisfied.



New member
I've had the same cymbal set-up for going on 4 or five years. I have never cleaned my cymbals because when I was first learning how to play, a drummer from the marching band at my high school told me that aged cymbals sound darker and better. This could be why I generally like the sound from my ZBTs. They're not the best, but they're not the worst!


New member
Groove juice is awesome i never let my cymbals get to that point of dirty. when it is built up like that (i'm a plumber so i got some kind of knowledge about copper and brass) it'll take multiple cleanings to try to restore its shine...but it can be done. :D


New member
To each their own. All of the guys above me say darker is better.
I use steal wool to polish my gear.
I play A customs, New Beat platinum, OLD A's, & Sabian metal-X.

Steal wool takes off those nasty lil' logos but it also takes off a VERY thin bit of the entire cymbal surface. I love the way they sound. Bright, cutting & full of sustain.

Like I said, "to each their own".


New member
"To Each His Own"

Exactly. I haven't cleaned that old Zildjian in 15 years, but I don't play that cymbal, either. My Saludas get cleaned after every gig, a light buffing most of the time, Groove Juice once a month, along with a light coating of Pledge to help repel the dust. I do like my Saludas bright and cutting, to go along with the music my band is playing.


New member
i got this on most of my cymbals
im not too bothered. im barely on my acoustic.
and im getting some new cymbals soon which will be my gig cymbals.


New member
It's called patina. As far as I am concerned it gives them charactor. Doesn't effect the sound and shows age.


New member
The groove juice works good but i ues that for my hardware and i ues the zildjain cymbal polish to clean me cymbals and it works fine


New member
I've used Barkeepers Friend, for about two bucks at most drug or grocery stores. It's a mild powdered cleanser that works as good as any marketed cymbal cleaner, and for a few bucks cheaper.