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View drobertson's profile

How do you protect metal on tools in high humidity?

by drobertson
posted 09-30-2014 02:01 PM


22 replies so far

View longgone's profile

longgone

5688 posts in 4279 days


#1 posted 09-30-2014 02:50 PM

Put a dehumidifier in your shop. My shop doesn’t need one but I have one in my storage shed and it works great. I store extra lumber, some tools and show supplies in there with no rust problems

View JohnChung's profile

JohnChung

421 posts in 3045 days


#2 posted 09-30-2014 02:52 PM

Living near the sea is an issue…... Salty air one big issue.

This maybe overkill but in this case it is necessary to built a dry box for your tools. Google on humidity and rust. Humidity at a certain level stops rust.

http://www.cotes.com/dehumidifiers-with-rust.html

I use dry boxes to store my precious metals….. Sorry tools. It works well

View drobertson's profile

drobertson

57 posts in 4087 days


#3 posted 09-30-2014 03:08 PM

I don’t think a dehumidifier would be able to keep up with my shop. The shop is in a garage without A/C in Florida. We work with the fans on and door open very often. The garage is also far from air tight. A dehumidifier would be working to remove all the moisture from Florida.

The idea of a dehumidifier in a dry box might be a good possible solution. I could build a large tool cabinet that is moderately air tight and add some level of dehumidification (is that a word?).

Right now I am mostly hoping that someone says that “product X” works miracles.

View timbertailor's profile

timbertailor

1594 posts in 2395 days


#4 posted 09-30-2014 03:15 PM

I spend a lot of time cleaning tools with oil.

Here in Houston, there is no getting away from the humidity. Makes everything about woodworking more difficult.

I hear stories of people using particle board and MDF for work benches and I just have to wonder how nice it would be to live in a place where these materials are not affected by our weather here by the coast.

Yeah, a dehumidifier is not an option for high humidity areas. An air conditioned space is the real solution. I would install one in a heart beat but I have to deal with an HOA that will not allow it.

Good thing I am moving to a 5 acre lot soon!

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

View bigblockyeti's profile

bigblockyeti

6944 posts in 2691 days


#5 posted 09-30-2014 03:22 PM

I use Bostik Top-Cote on all my exposed cast iron surfaces and I run a dehumidifier in my shop.

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

View drobertson's profile

drobertson

57 posts in 4087 days


#6 posted 09-30-2014 03:23 PM

@timbertailor It sounds like we are in similar situations. I am always on the edge of trouble with my HOA also (really don’t like developments). The only way I get away with as much as I do is that I do small projects for people around me all the time. I think I keep just enough people liking me to prevent a major fine of some kind. :-)

Congrats on moving to 5 acres. I grew up in Maine and had all the land you could ever want. Regrettably life changed that and now I live in a housing development in Florida.

I guess you work with what you have.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3458 posts in 2768 days


#7 posted 09-30-2014 03:25 PM

I can’t compare to salt-air Florida, so take this with a grain of salt, but I have found Boeshield T-9 very effective at keeping the rust of cast iron. One of the mags did a test about 4 years ago, and T-9 was the most effective. Worth a shot.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View drobertson's profile

drobertson

57 posts in 4087 days


#8 posted 09-30-2014 03:30 PM

I took a look at the Boeshield T-9 you suggested. It looks like it is worth a try. Thanks for the tip.

Do you happen to know if that contains any silicone? Nasty things happen to my finishes around silicone.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3458 posts in 2768 days


#9 posted 09-30-2014 03:34 PM

No—it is silicone free.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View GrandpaLen's profile

GrandpaLen

1652 posts in 3243 days


#10 posted 09-30-2014 03:37 PM

Camphor Blocks in the tool boxes and tool drawers.
My grandfather and my father always used them and that’s what I use, since it worked so well for them. Your shop will smell a little like moth balls but that helps control the spiders and bugs from entering. ;-)

http://www.rockler.com/how-to/camphor-blocks-metal-tool-box-rust-prevention-device/

I get them from our local pharmacy, or you can order them from Amazon.
http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=camphor+blocks&tag=mh0b-20&index=aps&hvadid=3527160341&ref=pd_sl_41jtkgvxig_p

For cast iron table tops use your favorite auto ‘paste’ wax, the same way as you would on your automobile, just be sure it contains NO silicone products.

Best Regards. – Grandpa Len.
Work Safely and have Fun.

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

View drobertson's profile

drobertson

57 posts in 4087 days


#11 posted 09-30-2014 03:51 PM

Thanks GrandpaLen, the Camphor idea looks very promising. It seems to work by preventing oxidation rather than extracting moisture. In my case I think fighting humidity would be a losing battle.

It will be interesting to see if my wife puts up with the smell. She does projects in that shop also and hates smelly things. Maybe I can sell her on the keeps bugs away idea.

Your idea also gets the award for cheapest and easiest to try. I can easily get Camphor this afternoon at the store.

View JohnChung's profile

JohnChung

421 posts in 3045 days


#12 posted 09-30-2014 04:03 PM

@drobertson build an air tight box and place desiccant into it. Humidity will drop dramatically.
In Asia, we use thirsty hippo.

View Dano46's profile

Dano46

86 posts in 4140 days


#13 posted 09-30-2014 04:17 PM

bigblockyeti, that’s exactly what I do. My shop is in my basement, and I need that humidifier running constantly.

-- You can't trust a dog to guard your food.

View timbertailor's profile

timbertailor

1594 posts in 2395 days


#14 posted 09-30-2014 05:29 PM



@timbertailor It sounds like we are in similar situations. I am always on the edge of trouble with my HOA also (really don t like developments). The only way I get away with as much as I do is that I do small projects for people around me all the time. I think I keep just enough people liking me to prevent a major fine of some kind. :-)

Congrats on moving to 5 acres. I grew up in Maine and had all the land you could ever want. Regrettably life changed that and now I live in a housing development in Florida.

I guess you work with what you have.

- drobertson

Thanks Doc. I can not wait to build the work shop to my specifications and most important of all, have A\C.

Living in the “country” will be different, but I am looking forward to it.

Having a dedicated space like I see so many of the LJ’s have will finely become a reality.

I guess I can stop hoarding locking caster wheels now.

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

View Loren's profile

Loren

10933 posts in 4619 days


#15 posted 09-30-2014 06:23 PM

Camelia oil for hand tools. That’s what they use in Japan,
which has a lot of humid areas.

It’s not the same as the camelia oil sold as a hair product
in Asian groceries.

I live in So. Cal and I’ve never had problems with hand
tools rusting so I don’t use anything, tolerating the
minor problems that do come up when a tool is
unused for awhile.

View Rob's profile

Rob

704 posts in 4042 days


#16 posted 09-30-2014 10:08 PM

If you look at all the reviews of rust preventers on Amazon, the magazine reviews, and recommendations on LJ and other sites, it seems there’s no silver bullet that works equally well for everyone.


I took a look at the Boeshield T-9 you suggested. It looks like it is worth a try. Thanks for the tip.

T-9 is tacky after curing, so someone online (maybe Wood Talk) recommended buffing then putting on a top coat of Renaissance Wax.

I’ve been using the T-9/Renaissance Wax combo this summer and still got some light rust on the right wing of my table saw after about 2 months. I figured the guideline to reapply every 2-3 mos was supposed to almost completely prevent rust, but if that’s the case I think the T-9+wax combination failed. Personally, I’ll start reapplying more frequently on most parts of the saw and will keep using it until it’s gone (because it was expensive), but if I continue to have the same issue I’ll try something else after the T-9 runs out.

In FWW's 2012 rust preventer test, T-9 did okay on tool steel but fared very poorly on cast iron. Camellia oil also didn’t do very well in the test, despite FWW's definitive statement only 10 months earlier, “Nothing works better at preventing rust on woodworking tools than camellia oil.” But a lot of people swear by camellia oil just as they do T-9 and other products.

-- Ask an expert or be the expert - http://woodworking.stackexchange.com

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1325 posts in 2919 days


#17 posted 10-01-2014 02:22 AM

I read this about shellac awhile ago. I have not tried it but I am very curious.

View firefighterontheside's profile

firefighterontheside

21326 posts in 2827 days


#18 posted 10-01-2014 02:31 AM

I fear that your problem is the salt air, but consider that good ventilation may be the most important thing. When my shop was in my garage I had condensation problems on my TS. I believe this was caused when my saw cooled off at night then stayed cool while the air warmed. Cool things in warm air have water condense on them. What you need to do is try to keep your tools the same temperature as the air. How to do that…

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View distrbd's profile

distrbd

2252 posts in 3417 days


#19 posted 10-01-2014 03:29 AM

I have been using a liquid car wax on all my tools,cast iron surfaces,hand tools without any problem ,the wax is called Collinite insulator wax,it does a great job in protecting against rain salt ,dust,rust,etc,etc,they recently have come up with a new formula specifically made for metal protection called Liquid metal wax .
http://www.collinite.com/automotive-wax/insulator-wax/
http://www.collinite.com/automotive-wax/liquid-metal-wax/

-- Ken from Ontario, Canada

View B4B's profile

B4B

167 posts in 2329 days


#20 posted 10-01-2014 04:04 AM

I can’t speak to salty air, my tool storage is in a “shed” at the back of my carport. The soffits and the top of the “interior” wall from the soffit line to the roof peak are open to air flow. I’ve contemplated what it would take to button it up and install some sort of exterior door (and run a dehumidifier) but I don’t know if the reward to effort/cost ratio is worth it. I live in Eastern Washington, just south of Seattle and we get Rain in the Fall though the spring (moved to WA from NH for a job change, a 3000 mile cross country move was not fun or easy).

The last 2 years, my TS and RAS were stored in a shed built on the side of our house, and the temperature and humidify was fairly constant and I didn’t see much rust form. This is the first year I’ve started to do any woodworking and have been storing my TS, RAS, and Jointer in the carport shed since mid-summer (a friend of mine wanted to do a project so I moved them all into the carport storage area).

I’m contemplating covering my TS and jointer with a good coat of paste wax once I finish my current project and put the tools into storage for the winter. My smaller hand tools are stored indoors in my utility room.

I’ve read that, as others suggested, Boeshield T-9, Paste wax, and for tabletops (like a table saw), simply building a wood box to cover the top (not the whole saw) can help reduce rust formation. I’m going to try paste wax and a box. I may try to get some silica gel to see how that works too.

I did read on the back of the Boeshield that re-application (on the aerosol can) is every 2-3 weeks. You can coat it thick and let it dry, it dries tacky. Even then it needs to be re-applied periodically.

Don’t, I repeat, don’t use WD-40. WD-40 (so I’ve read) can actually trap moisture near the metal and cause rust to form.

-- There's two routers in my vocab, one that moves data and one that removes wood, the latter being more relevant on this forum.

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

1532 posts in 3732 days


#21 posted 10-01-2014 08:33 PM

Here are my thoughts after 50 plus years of having a shop.

1. I have been using WD-40 for years on all of my tools including machines and they all are rust free. I live in Atlanta, GA where we have to use a knife to cut our way through the summer humidity and I have a basement shop. I went to the WD-40 company website (http://www.wd40company.com/) and read up on the product. It was invented for the U.S. Navy shortly after WW-2 to stop rust on the machinery in their ships. I guess you can’t get much more salty air than the U.S. Navy! Anyway, WD-40 seeps into the pores of the metal and forces moisture out, then leaves a coat of chemical to repel moisture. Read up on it at the website. Most of us spray on WD-40 and then immediately wipe off the excess. I spray it on and let it sit overnight or longer to make sure it works its way into every nook, cranny, and pore. I then wipe it down with a paper towel leaving as much as possible. I find no rub-off on wood after it sits for a day or two. I do this about once a year, however I have tools in drawers I have neglected to spray for four or five years that still have no rust. I will say that over a few years, like five to ten, I occasionally have to clean off the tool and start over again as the waxy moisture fighting residue begins to get a touch gummy, but this is a simple thing to do.

2. I like the idea of a “dry box”. I would suggest you try a desiccant (a product that absorbs moisture) like silica gel in the box with your tools. This should work as long as the box is air tight. Just add a soft door seal around the edge of the lid. Silica gel is very cheap and should it ever become moisture logged, you can put it in an oven at a temperature at a touch over 212 degrees for a few hours and that will drive the moisture out, so it is re-usable. Also about silica gel. I use fairly large bottles of the watery kind of cyanoacrylic adhesive (super glue). These are somewhat costly and tend to go bad after sitting on a workbench for a while. What sets off (catalyzes) cyanoacrylic glue is moisture, so to keep thing kind of glue for a long time keep it away from moisture. I keep my CYA glue in a large jelly jar with some silica gel. I have had it sitting on my bench now for four years and it is still like new. Also, if you use CYA glue for very precise applications, put a hypodermic needle on the bottle. Yes, the needle will clog after sitting, just hold a lit butane cigarette lighter under the tip for about one second and it will open up.

Planeman

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View Derek Cohen's profile

Derek Cohen

511 posts in 4939 days


#22 posted 10-02-2014 02:26 PM

Renaissance wax.

Regards from Perth

Derek

-- Buildiing furniture, and reviewing and building tools at http://www.inthewoodshop.com

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