I have a little vise #3: Getting pickled

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Blog entry by BritBoxmaker posted 06-29-2015 07:30 PM 2363 reads 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Strip down Part 3 of I have a little vise series Part 4: It gets worse before it gets better »

I really have cracked on today. A lot more done, or started, than I thought I would. So to clean all the parts. Following some advice from, Roger Bean, I’m trying pickling the parts in white vinegar.

In a bucket

Small parts first. This is left to pickle for two hours or so and then scrubbed with a brass wire brush.
All the loose crud came off easily. The working surfaces came up like new and the rough cast was fine.
I gave the whole lot a rinse in warm water and a dry.

Then a spray with WD40, all over, to stop any short term rusting.

As it was such a great success I’ve put the two large castings in

and having topped the liquid up with water, and hence reducing the acetic acid concentration, I’m giving them a soak overnight. That really is all for today.

Be seeing you.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

7 comments so far

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9239 posts in 4039 days

#1 posted 06-29-2015 09:29 PM

That’s cool to know. What a good job you did. It is always helpful to find something that does what it is supposed to do.


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View robscastle's profile


7948 posts in 3324 days

#2 posted 06-29-2015 10:15 PM

White Vinagar the all round cure all !

It has thousands of uses from medical to woodwork !

Psst it is the active ingredient in cast iron saw table top restorers, but the sellers possibly do not want you to know so dont say anything!!

A great result on the way !!

-- Regards Rob

View sras's profile


6175 posts in 4249 days

#3 posted 06-29-2015 10:52 PM

Impressive progress Martyn!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Druid's profile


2205 posts in 3915 days

#4 posted 06-30-2015 12:44 AM

Looking good Martyn. Just after I read your update, I went to another site . . . . . . and found a similar vinegar (or Coke) cleaning method, and they also mentioned some further information that I had not seen before.
Here’s a partial quote from their explanation of getting rid of the grime . . .
I used to use citrus cleaner for this part. My friend Chris Kuehn told me about using Scrubbing Bubbles, and I will never go back. I like to wear gloves during this part, and I would recommend that you do as well. Cover your work surface with newspaper or magazine pages to protect your table and make for an easy cleanup when the project is finished. Spray all the metal components with a generous dose of Scrubbing Bubbles. Let them stand for several minutes as the bubbles work their magic. Then, using 0000 steel wool, brass brushes and toothbrushes, scrub off as much of the grime and rust as you can. Every now and then, wipe things off with a paper towel to check your progress. If more scrubbing bubbles are needed, spray on more, let stand for a few minutes, and go back to work.

I have not tried this, but the Craftsy site usually has good information, so it might become a method of choice for me in the future. I’d be interested in feedback if any LJ’s try it.

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

View Arlin Eastman's profile

Arlin Eastman

4549 posts in 3681 days

#5 posted 06-30-2015 01:11 AM


I am going to have to try that too. Thank you for showing it.
If it sits over night what will it look like or do to the paint?

-- It is always the right time, to do the right thing.

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 4156 days

#6 posted 06-30-2015 03:28 PM

We will see,today, Arlin. I suspect the paint will not be touched but…

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile (online now)


21207 posts in 4795 days

#7 posted 07-01-2015 12:32 AM

Good to know. Thanks

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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