rusty tools


Old 09-03-03, 03:23 AM
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rusty tools

I bought a tray of old tools (screwdrivers, wrenches, etc) - the well made kind - but they are covered in rust.
Is there something I can soak them in to get ridof the rust? If not, what is the easiest way to clean them up?
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Old 09-03-03, 05:38 AM
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You could try WD-40 and fine steel wool or a commercial rust remover.
Old 09-03-03, 05:44 AM
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Have a coke?

You can soak the tools in Coke and it'll remove most of the rust or use Navel Jelly a commercial rust remover. BUT...what are your future plans for the tools? If for your personal use, get the rust out. If you plan to sell them, many old tools have a higher value with the rust on them!
Old 09-03-03, 07:21 AM
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I bought some old C-clamps off of Ebay and the guy essentially lied to me about them. I took care of that, but had to work with what I had.

One of the clamps I simply sand blasted it at work. Came out very nice. I put some Vastra oil (light machine oil) on the threads and it works nicely .
Old 09-03-03, 09:10 PM
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More rust removal info.


I'm in the process of reaserching industrial strength rust removal so I'll give you what I've learned.

The Coke method is not that far fetched
Coke has in it's formula phosphoric acid for tartness. Phosphoric acid is what is used in the commercial paint industry for removing rust and at the sampe time leaving a coating of phosphate on the surface which happens to make paint adhere better and will also provide a short term rustproofing prior to painting.
Phosphoric acid will vigorously attack rust but is very slow at dissolving steel and will not etch the metal in the time it takes to eat the rust.
Muriatic acid, which is available at most hardware stores as a concrete etch, is also good at eating rust but will etch the metal you are treating.
I have been using muriatic for awhile and find that it does a very good job on car parts. Each piece of the front end I am repairing has been soaked in muriatic, washed and painted.
The results are almost identical to sandblasting without the mess and equipment.
Any part of the work you don't want attacked by acid just needs a light coating of grease and it won't be affected.

Oh ya, what makes Coke a bit of a pain is it would take many days if not weeks to remove any amount of rust because it is so dilute.

Warning: Acid is dangerous and must be treated with extreme caution!!!
Old 10-08-03, 08:23 AM
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hi everyone. i learned in my auto manual that turpentine works very well on rusted steel. i use it on my wheel stud threads and it does do the trick. thanks, doug
Old 10-22-03, 08:51 PM
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If you want to try something amazing, use an electrolyte solution. It sounds complicated but works amazingly. I do a lot of old car parts like this. You'll need 2 old grills or bars, a battery charger and a plastic pail. Check out some web sites about it. Fill a pail 3/4 with water, add about 3 tablespoons of baking soda. I use 2 old bbq grills in a plastic lined box. Link the grills to each other with a piece of bare copper wire. Put the grills on opposite sides of the pail. Attach the + lead from the battery charger to one of the grills. Then with a piece of wood across the pail, suspend what you want cleaned from the wood, use wire or rope. Then attach the - lead to the piece to be cleaned and hang it all in the solution, being careful not to touch the grills and + lead. Small parts take about 1 hr. brake rotors about 3. good luck.
Old 10-24-03, 09:13 AM
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I just now saw this method in ShopNotes issue 72, and jumped in here to tell about it, but JungleJim beat me to it. I saw it last night in issue #72 of ShopNotes (woodworking mag), which you might still use as a ref. They have a website, but it doesn't give any details
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