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View Malekin's profile

Reconditioning hand planes

by Malekin
posted 08-25-2009 12:27 PM


27 replies so far

View Waldschrat's profile

Waldschrat

505 posts in 4038 days


#1 posted 08-25-2009 01:02 PM

I have heard with iron planes, that you can use a sacrifical piece of metal and a set of electrodes (battery charger, not sure though on that) and a bucket with I believe a salt solution and de rust it that way… I have read about in a book, but never tried it my self. unfortunately I have that book packed away, or I could look it up for you. I know it works that though, very well for things like that. Maybe someone else here could say for sure how you do this.

-- Nicholas, Cabinet/Furniture Maker, Blue Hill, Maine

View roadrunner0925's profile

roadrunner0925

43 posts in 4223 days


#2 posted 08-25-2009 01:03 PM

i have seen a where someone took naval jelly, put it in a plastic bag, and then put the old plane in the bag. he claimed to have gotten great results. i have used naval jelly and it works well.

-- wm, brandon,ms

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

3099 posts in 4040 days


#3 posted 08-25-2009 01:45 PM

Done this, been there, searched online, asked on LJ’s and there are a few threads here relating to this. Lots of methods work but save yourself some time and effort and go online or to Autozone (a car store parts chain) and get some Evaporust. No discussion necessary, place your plane parts in it and in a few hrs they will be as rust free as you will ever get them. Rinse them off under the faucet after. Always works. Non toxic and reusable up to a point. Amazing, amazing stuff.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 4424 days


#4 posted 08-25-2009 01:49 PM

One note I would add to Nicholas’ comment is that while salt would work it will give off chlorine gas which is highly toxic and corrosive. Use baking soda instead of table salt. The only problem I have with the electrolysis method is that, while it removes the rust, it leaves a black deposit on the surface of the iron.

Another method that works pretty well is Evaporust. It can be bought at any automotive store or in gallon quantities from Evaporust.com for $21.00 per gallon plus shipping. It works pretty well at rust removal and there have been reviews posted here.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View FatScratch's profile

FatScratch

189 posts in 3905 days


#5 posted 08-25-2009 01:50 PM

Wow, I had never heard about Evaporust! It looks like a great product. I’ll keep that one in mind for future use. Thanks guys.

Here is a LJ blog on handplane restoration: http://lumberjocks.com/David/blog/2191

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#6 posted 08-25-2009 02:40 PM

The best method I have found for rust removal is by using electrolysis. You will need a plastic container large enough for the piece being cleaned to be suspended and submerged, a 12V battery charger, and Arm & Hammer Washing Soda(calcium carbonate). The soda is a little difficult to find sometimes. You will also need a metal rod or 2 to be a sacrificial anode.

Suspend the part in the bucket, use wire, bare copper I have found works well. Mix the washing soda to about 1 tablespoon/gallon of water. Place the sacrificial anode in the solution as well but NOT touching the part to be cleaned and clamp it to the sides of the bucket. It is better to have multiple anodes as the process only works by “line of sight”. Attach the battery charger. Very important here, if you get this wrong it wont work and you will add rust to the part being cleaned. The POS cable gets connected to the anode and NEG to the part being cleaned. Plug in the charger and go have a beer, wait a few hours, its a slow process. It will usually take 12-24 hrs to complete depending on how much rust there is to remove. Once you start the process within a few minutes you will see small bubbles appear in the solution. The chemical reaction has begun.

When all of the rust has been removed the reaction will stop by its self. Its kinda cool. There may be a black film on the parts which is normal. A good stiff wire brush works well at removing it. Just a side note, DO NOT use stainless steel as the anode material, it will create a toxic solution in the chemical reaction. Rebar works well, is cheap and readily available.

Evaporust, which has been mentioned here, works well but is expensive. I have used it and the parts come out clean but are etched. The parts are even sticky and just dont look right. The elevtrolysis leaves the “patina” and will even remove paint if left in long enough.

Good luck and if ya need any more info send me a PM.

The video is not mine and I am not endorsing it in anyway. I found it as a reference to help guide.

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#7 posted 08-25-2009 02:50 PM

Here are a few pics of a recent table saw top that I cleaned using electrolysis.

And after…...

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8554 posts in 4250 days


#8 posted 08-25-2009 03:06 PM

I just restored a #6 (large) hand plane, and chose against electrolysis. too complicated for such small items – I didn’t really find it necessary.

I used evaporust, and blogged it here

before:
rutsy
after (after a couple of hours):
clean

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View HokieMojo's profile

HokieMojo

2104 posts in 4330 days


#9 posted 08-25-2009 03:22 PM

It was said above, but this should be highlighted. Washing soda is different from baaking soda (although both are often made by arm and hammer). The electrolysis works well, especially for larger items. A gallon of eaporust will cost you $20. a box of washing soda (enough to derust a car) will cost you $2. with evaporust, you need to completely submerge the items. Finding an appropriately sized container to fit a #8 without too much wasted space (which would require more evaporust) isn’t always easy. Just some ideas to help you make your descision. I’ve been really happy with the results from both, but they really have different pros and cons. let us know what you decide and how it works.

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#10 posted 08-25-2009 03:24 PM

Purp…...Did you find that the evaporust made the metal “sticky”? I dodnt like what it did to the color of the metal either. I will continue to use it for smaller parts, nuts, bolts, washers etc

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8554 posts in 4250 days


#11 posted 08-25-2009 03:31 PM

Hokie – a custom fit container for a #8 can be made from Aluminum foil which will minimize the amount of evaporust needed – true, it still costs more than washing soda. but not everyone have a battery charger, cables, and clips which can up the costs.

Ken – I did not find the parts to be sticky at all. I did wash them with soap and water after the evaporust, and sprayed them with WD40 to prevent flash-rust (which you’d do either way even with electrolysis). but after that, they feel just like any other brand new (clean) plane/metal. the results are quite amazing to say the least.

I just checked the link to Davids’ (from the folding ruler show) restoration of the plane (linked above) where he used electrolysis, and the results are far from what I’ve seen in my process using evaporust which seems (at least to me) to be much better.

I would use electrolysis for really big parts for which evaporust just wouldn’t make sense to use – such as Ken’s Table top. but for smaller stuff, it’s just not worth the trouble (to me).

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View depictureboy's profile

depictureboy

420 posts in 4245 days


#12 posted 08-25-2009 03:32 PM

Somewhere on here I made a post about using molasses in a 3 to 1 ratio with water(3 parts water to one part molasses) its cheap, it works well and it doesnt destroy the japanning if there is any on the items. But it takes a bit longer than the evaporust. When your done though get rid of the solution cause it gets a nasty funk kind of moldy after a few weeks…

-- If you can't build it, code it. If you can't code it, build it. But always ALWAYS take a picture.

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#13 posted 08-25-2009 03:41 PM

I am kinda lucky. I dont have to worry too much about flash rust. Our humidity is in the low teens most of the time. Its hot and thank god not humid, I dont see how you east coast guys do it.

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View Derrek LeRouax's profile

Derrek LeRouax

129 posts in 3896 days


#14 posted 08-25-2009 06:51 PM

Ken – Forget the East Coast. Try woodworking with a cast iron table top in an open garage in Houston Texas. Today it is 97 degrees with a 93% relative humidity, bringing the heat index to a slightly cool 104 degrees. Also keep in mind, today is the coolest day we have had in the last week.

I have to sand, and re-wax my table saw table top every month. I’m a pro at it now, but it still takes 2 hours to do right…

-- Derrek L.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5242 posts in 4562 days


#15 posted 08-26-2009 01:21 AM

You didn’t say what kind of planes they are. If they are possible collector jobbies I would be careful to hand clean.
Bill

-- [email protected]

View Julian's profile

Julian

884 posts in 4127 days


#16 posted 08-26-2009 02:08 AM

I wouldn’t care if they are collectible items if you plan on using them. A clean tool that you use is better than a rusty relic sitting on a shelf.

Here is an old Stanley I redid using evaporust.

-- Julian, Homewood, IL

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#17 posted 08-26-2009 02:14 AM

Derrek…..I guess I should have included the midwest as well. I know what its like to be hot, we are 105 here today. But, I dont have the humidity to deal with, thank god!! If it hits 30% here we are dying. I cant imagine 90%+, I dont see how you do it.

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View Malekin's profile

Malekin

19 posts in 3803 days


#18 posted 08-26-2009 04:38 AM

Wow !! What a response. THank you, you’ve given me much to consider. I have one plane that’s probably too large to go the evaporust route without getting prohibitively expensive. the smaller ones however seem like they are candidates for a chenical bath :-) .... now to get to payday so I can get a can of evaporust . till then I think I’ll get to work on the bigger one and see what I can do with that one . got a battery charger . Does washing soda works best for the Electrolysis or could I substitute baking soda. Am I looking for a Chlorate based substance for the electrolytic reaction ?

-- "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#19 posted 08-26-2009 04:47 AM

If you are going to try the electrolysis method, washing soda is the best. It is calcium carbonate. Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate and there seems to be an issue with the bicarbonate in the solution. I am not a chemist and I dont remember the issue. Baking soda will work somewhat but the washing soda will give you all the bang. FYI…..the newer battery chargers are considered “smart”. They have an internal brain that senses current, if nothing is sensed the charger “may not” work. If that is the case add an old battery in line to fool the charger. Washing soda is found in the laundry aisle. I found it at Albertsons, you may have to “shop” around. GL….Ken

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View Malekin's profile

Malekin

19 posts in 3803 days


#20 posted 08-26-2009 05:10 AM

Aha , found an Article that says that Sodium Bicarbonate (baking soda) can be Cooked at 300 Deg … it loses water and a CO2 molecule and becomes Sodium carbonate (washing soda) . think I ‘ll cook up some washing soda … outside in a well ventilated area :-) Will let you know how it works out and thank you all for your input .

-- "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1615 posts in 4064 days


#21 posted 08-26-2009 06:00 AM

If you cook it it will become SODIUM CARBONATE. Washing soda is CALCIUM CARBONATE.

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View Malekin's profile

Malekin

19 posts in 3803 days


#22 posted 08-27-2009 04:18 AM

Now I Looked em up. My HS chem is a lil rusty buuut … Calcium Carbonate is basicly eroded limestone or seashells
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calcium_carbonate
Whereas Sodium carbonate I remember was used in glassmaking . didn’t know it was called washing soda till I looked it up though
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodium_carbonate
then I found I guy’s website that restores cars and he makes his own from baking soda. Found another site that explained the reation process so I think I’m gonna try that on the larger plane till I can buy a can of evaporust . I seem to be collecting rusty stuff and from reading all the posts both methods seem to have their uses. Oh …. The guy that wrote the article on car restoration said that the more alkali the solution the better the reaction but the more alkali substances like Sodium hydroxide and such have undesireable side effects such as nasty odors and dangerous and or flamable vapors. btw got a 4 pack of Baking soda this afternoon and gonna cook some soda on the grill :-)

-- "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

View depictureboy's profile

depictureboy

420 posts in 4245 days


#23 posted 08-28-2009 06:18 PM

instead of getting all chemistried…why not just try molasses? its simple, easy and works well…plus it fits your other requirement of being cheap. oh yea…and its SAFE.

-- If you can't build it, code it. If you can't code it, build it. But always ALWAYS take a picture.

View Malekin's profile

Malekin

19 posts in 3803 days


#24 posted 08-29-2009 05:34 AM

But, but I gotta save my Blackstrap molasses for my Pork and Saurkraut and my glaze for my meatloaf ….. hmmm but it IS cheap … point taken

-- "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

View Cantputjamontoast's profile

Cantputjamontoast

416 posts in 4034 days


#25 posted 08-29-2009 05:17 PM

Evapo rust!!!!!!!!!!!!

Then search the net for parts descriptions and adjustment hints.

Anybody that has the skill to make that nice bench you made can do this in his sleep.

If I can do this any high functioning idiot can. (i do not infer that you are a high functioning idiot.)

The first time you use these puppies after you get them tuned you will love the music they make as thin shavings come off the wood.

Can you post some pictures?

-- "Not skilled enough to wipe jam on toast!"

View Malekin's profile

Malekin

19 posts in 3803 days


#26 posted 09-01-2009 03:44 AM

Here is a Pic of the Planes, nice and crusty :-)

Hand tools

-- "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

View Malekin's profile

Malekin

19 posts in 3803 days


#27 posted 10-08-2009 05:43 AM

ok sorry it took me so long to add to this. Actually been busy at work… YAY ! oh, anyway. I have 4 of the planes finished and making shavings with em :-) .. I will add pictures soon, my camera battery was dead (sigh). As to the method for rust removal I started setting up a plastic bucket for the Electrolysis and found my battery charger had kicked the bucket (big sigh) .. Looked at the Evaporust … You guys are right, very pricey. Put it on hold … was at Home Despot picking up some household cleaning chemicals and restocking on thinner and alchohol n such for the shop and what do i see on the floor in a gallon container ? Rust Pre-Dip chemical rust remover from Zep. Hmm …. Can’t be any good, It’s only 9.95 … heck for that price if it just removes SOME of the rust I’ll be happy. Happy to say it worked great. I put some in a plastic mud pan for doing drywall and let it sit overnight. the metal had a slimey black coating on it when I took it out but when i took a soft bristle brush and some water to the parts, they came squeaky clean. I had a little flash rust on the first few parts but I grabbed the Ol’ WD-40 and wiped em down right after I rinsed em and all the parts came out fine. The Irons were in pretty bad shape though, looks like I will have to replace them. They have some heavy pitting along the edges and as I sharpen them I’m gonna start getting a ragged edge the deeper I go on the Iron. I want to say thanks for the suggestions and don’t think this is over. I found a local auction about 10 miles from my house that always has a good many tools, especially those of the woodworking variety, up for auction every Monday night. Now I want a shoulder plane, a nice big jointer plane, and a … and a … well, You get the Idea :-)

-- "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

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