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Rusty tools


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I picked up a few tools at a garage sale for $5.00 Canadian, but they are a bit rusty ( well a lot rusty ) and I was wondering if anyone has a solution to remove the rust. They are a few files ( round, rasp etc. and a hammer and a couple of drill bits). I have heard that using CLR will work, but if anyone has any other ideas that would be great. Thanks  :unsure:

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Rust is iron turned into iron oxyhydroxide, which means that you lost metal. Not sure it is worth de-rusting files and drill bits, as their cutting edges are likely to have suffered.

 

My method for antique tools is to soak them for a few days in used tea-leaves. Collect your tea-bags over a few days, rip them open and make a sort of slurry from them into which you immerse the iron parts. The biiter-tasting dark brownish stuff that comes out of the tea-leaves (which is why you take the bag out of your cup in time) is a collection of high-molecular weight organic acids that are good complexants for iron(III). They help to dissolve the iron oxyhydroxide and keep the iron in solution. In fact, the solution turns pitch black with time (you may want to keep the filtered solution as a nasty black stain for wood, btw). After a few days of immersion you take your iron parts out, rinse them thoroughly and then dry them quickly, e.g. with a hair-dryer to prevent them from rusting again. This process removes the rusted iron, but it doesn't bring back the metal, of course. So, a rusted cutting edge is lost forever.

 

Some people also use Coca Cola (probably the best use for it), but the phosphoric acid in it converts the rust into iron phosphates, a form of iron that is sparingly soluble and quite stable. It is essentially the same process that is used in so-called 'rust converters' sold for mending rusting car bodies. For tools this is not particularly useful, as you will have a black crust sticking ferociously to the surface where the rust has been before. This crust is difficult to remove even by harsh wire-brushing.

 

Apropos wire brushing: I would not use steel wire-brushes on cutting edges, as this may blunt the edge.

 

wefalck

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Reading the FAQs section on their product Web-page it seems that the solution contains a reducing agent and some phosphates. Actually, the tea-leaves are also a reducing agent, which is why the solution become black (from iron(II)) - and they are free ...

 

wefalck

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long time way to handle rust is with some naval jelly.

use gloves and an open area and wash.

 

after that use some steel wool and then at the end use the wd40 or light oil.

 

the jelly removes the rust and "stops" it  use the wool to make sure you get clean surfaces of bare rust free metal.

then the wd40 or light machine oil will help to keep oxygen from getting to the metal.

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For the electrolysis method a battery charger is all thats needed a lump of stainless steel and some sodium hydroxiide solution - caution its very corrosive, off the top of my head I cant remember which pole is the stainless and the other is the item to be presevered. It does work but I have only tried it on small items many years back.

 

Norman

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