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    Cleaning up surface rust

    So, most of my shop equipment has been in the horse barn since I bought them. Some are worse than others, but about all have gotten some surface rust on them. Now that I have a new place to put them I would like to get them in a little better condition than they are right now.

    What are the tried and true methods of cleaning the rust off?

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    WD-40 or mineral spirits + Scotch Brite pads + Elbow grease
    If you have some tough spots you might need to resort to 400# wet or dry sandpaper, still using the WD-40 or mineral spirits as a lubricant.
    If you have any heavy rust you may have to break out the Naval Jelly. Follow the directions (it's basically acid suspended in goo - seriously use rubber gloves and have lots of ventilation).
    Last edited by cpw; 09-11-2017 at 11:24 AM.
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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    Evapo-rust works nicely too. No acid, fumes, etc. Biodegradable. See the videos and FAQs.

    https://www.evapo-rust.com/product-info/

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    +1 to WD-40 + scouring pad

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    I've success using a slurry of WD-40 and Barkeepers Friend applied with a waxing pad on a ROS. Wipe is all up with mineral spirits.
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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    When working with the NCWW's at the Klingspor opening, there was a guy demonstrating what looked like a sanding sponge that had some mineral and abrasive in it and it did a great job off cleaning up rust and polishing at the same time. I left and forgot to buy it but it looked interesting. Also left a protective coat. Didn't ask if there was any silicone in it.

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    John,

    Was it by chance these blocks? They are great for cleaning rust and gunk from metal - leave it with a polished surface.

    http://www.woodworkingshop.com/product/sa99996/
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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    I've had good luck with the sandflex blocks that Ken linked above. I follow up with mineral spirits sometimes, but usually just apply a sealant/protector after the blocks.


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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    If my elbows are running low on grease I'll take the 6" x 9" green scotch brite pads that they sell at Home Depot, usually in the cleaning section, cut a 6" circle out of it and put it on the surface to be cleaned. If you put a ROS with a hook and loop pad down on it it will make short work of the rust. Lubricate liberally with WD-40 as others have mentioned. If you pick up the sander, the scotch brite pad will spin off across the room, but it will stick as long as you keep it sitting on the pad on the surface to be sanded.

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    ​I made an amazing discovery some time ago. Vinegar eats rust, but it can also damage metal. Here's my process: 1- clean dirt & junk off surface 2- sanding block & vinegar 3- wipe clean 4- when rust is gone immediately apply WD-40 5- clean WD-40 off with mineral spirits 6- apply protective cover such as T-9 or some other like product.

    Pop

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    steel wool and johnsons paste wax. stick it on your RO sander if you like. wipes right off when you are done and leaves a protective coating of wax behind.
    fred p If it ain't broke you aint trying hard enough

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    I like electric powered elbow grease when possible.

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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    ​+1 for Evapo Rust. Works very well!


    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff View Post
    Evapo-rust works nicely too. No acid, fumes, etc. Biodegradable. See the videos and FAQs.

    https://www.evapo-rust.com/product-info/
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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    Quote Originally Posted by KenOfCary View Post
    John,

    Was it by chance these blocks? They are great for cleaning rust and gunk from metal - leave it with a polished surface.

    http://www.woodworkingshop.com/product/sa99996/
    I do have the Sand Flex blocks and find they excellent for removing rust. Use WD-40 or mineral spirits as a lubricant, then clean up using rags and the same 2 products. You can apply a coat of Johnsons Paste Wax, or my favorite, Top Saver which will leave a lasting, lubricated surface, that protects from rust. I buy the Top Saver products at Klingspors Woodworking Shops.
    Experience is a hard teacher; she gives the test first, and the lesson later.

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  28. #15
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    Re: Cleaning up surface rust

    This is all great information as I've had some surface rust show up on some of my planes. It seems that after you remove the rust there are a few options for protection mentioned here:

    1. Paste wax
    2. Top saver
    3. T-9

    Any others? any advantages to one versus another?

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