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189 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 240627 17-Sep-2018 18:45
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I am looking for recommendations for rust removers or neutralisers mainly to use on small things such as tool bits and other workshop items that develop light surface rust mostly during damp winter months.

 

One of the best products that I used to have in my workshop for this job was named 'Jenolite' and it was excellent for removing surface rust just by soaking items for a few minutes.

 

However, I believe that it contained some toxic chemicals that are no longer approved in NZ and it has since disappeared. I think it is still sold in the UK.

 

Can anyone recommend a similar product available locally?


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13436 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 2092125 17-Sep-2018 18:47
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Bump, to see replies. Nice thread. 

 

 


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 2092132 17-Sep-2018 19:02
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Evapo-Rust works great, but over the time of hours rather than minutes, it chelates the rust so safe to use on other metals as well as iron. I have used it on tools and old axe and sickle blades. It can give the metal a kind of dull grey finish though (could polish off it you care).


eph

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  Reply # 2092135 17-Sep-2018 19:09
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Apparently just normal white vinegar can do similar job if you can soak the item.

 

Any good products if you can't soak the rusty item (too big to soak)?


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Geek
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  Reply # 2092154 17-Sep-2018 20:04
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Metal Brite.

 

Made by Chem-Trend Rotorua.

 

We use it to remove rust marks and stains from fibreglass boats and paintwork. Cleans rusty steel tools up quite well but may take a little time. 

 

 


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  Reply # 2092195 17-Sep-2018 21:08
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Phosphoric acid (orthophosphoric acid) works well to dissolve surface rust - and it's relatively non-toxic, not too corrosive, and the main or sole ingredient of most proprietary "rust converters".  Problem is that it'll dissolve bright zinc coatings etc.  They use it (food grade) in coca cola etc - so it can't be that bad for you.

 

There are people selling it on trademoi etc in 1 litre bottles.  I'd wager that "Jenolite" is just that with some dye added so that the stuff feels special.

 

Oxalic acid (you can buy crystals at hardware shops) is good for removing rust stains, but is a bit toxic. 

 

3M make a good rust converter / primer, which I assume uses some tannic acid, but is a polymeric emulsion.  Good to paint on after you've removed loose rust, you wait for it to react/neutralise - the surface turns blue/black, then paint over.  You can get that at Supercheap auto etc.

 

 


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  Reply # 2092198 17-Sep-2018 21:24
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Oncop53:

 

Evapo-Rust works great, but over the time of hours rather than minutes, it chelates the rust so safe to use on other metals as well as iron. I have used it on tools and old axe and sickle blades. It can give the metal a kind of dull grey finish though (could polish off it you care).

 

 

If they're talking "chelation" then it's probably EDTA. 

 

LOL - there are people selling it on trademoi - as well as orthophosphoric acid etc.

 

A bit expensive ($>50/kg).  You'd probably only want to use a 5-10% solution, so 1kg could go a long way.


mdf

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  Reply # 2092209 17-Sep-2018 22:02
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Fred99:

 

3M make a good rust converter / primer, which I assume uses some tannic acid, but is a polymeric emulsion.  Good to paint on after you've removed loose rust, you wait for it to react/neutralise - the surface turns blue/black, then paint over.  You can get that at Supercheap auto etc.

 

 

I've just been using the CRC equivalent (the brush on, not aerosol spray). Amazed at how well it has worked... after many hours of the angle grinder and about 6 strip discs:

 

 

This weekend will be topcoating, all going to plan.

 

It was emphasised to me never ever be tempted to tip back any into the bottle once the brush has been in it; it will be the end of it.

 

For preventing rust, I've been using Dry Glide. I got some of this for my cast iron table saw restoration and works really well.


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 2092240 18-Sep-2018 04:45
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I have just run out of Jenolite, didn't realise it was off the market but I got it from Repco many years ago. I have been looking at electrolysis as an option that might be great for the small bits and pieces. I might give it a go this weekend. 


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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 2092241 18-Sep-2018 05:18
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Fred99:

 

Phosphoric acid (orthophosphoric acid) works well to dissolve surface rust - and it's relatively non-toxic, not too corrosive, and the main or sole ingredient of most proprietary "rust converters".  Problem is that it'll dissolve bright zinc coatings etc.  They use it (food grade) in coca cola etc - so it can't be that bad for you.

 

There are people selling it on trademoi etc in 1 litre bottles.  I'd wager that "Jenolite" is just that with some dye added so that the stuff feels special.

 

 

I second Phosphoric Acid. Great stuff. It's a real rust 'converter', and leaves a phosphate coating for some protection against further rusting

 

For 10 years in my small machine shop, 100m from the open ocean, rust was the bane of my existence.

 

As well as trying to keep the shop positively pressurised with dry air, I had a large selection of rust treatment chemicals and paints.
Anything that could be sealed or painted - was. I used protective storage sprays, waxes, lanolins and oils on all my tooling.
I built airtight storage drawers for my tooling, larger lockers for tools & welders etc that an 800l tank of dried air bled off through at the end of the day

 

For rust removal I had an elecrolysis tank & also tried a lot of proprietary gelled, coloured and mixed products. Many were relatively expensive and based on P.A. - so I purchased an undiluted  4l container of it on trademe.

 

Turned up in the mail in a plain cardboard box. About 85% proof, clear, slightly gelled liquid in one of those 4l plastic containers that you buy thinners in.
To say that the R.D guy was surprised to find that he'd delivered strong acid in his pile of mail is an understatement.

 

Very useful stuff. Among the many things I used it for..

 

- wiped a well diluted mix over the 1/4" steel plate top of my mobile welding table. Which removed all the rust & left a black coating after I neutralised it.
It later accidentally spent a night outside in light rain and a sheen of rust formed over all the untreated areas, the top surface was fine.

 

- treated the inside of a large rusty compressor tank with a dilute mix, scoping it a couple of years later showed minimal rust.

 

Any rusted parts going through the solvent washer or soda blaster would go onto my treatment rack - and get an acid wash for those seams & hard to reach areas, then neutralise & compressed air blowdown.

 

Finding a suitable mix was trial and error. Early on I made up a strong (50%) mix to clean up the pitted head on my large drill press. lowered the MT4 spindle into the container - & got called away. The next morning my wife called to say bubbles and foam were coming out. Sure enough I'd deeply etched it down to the 'grain' of it's manufacture. Had to machine it down, ream out to an MT5 and use an adaptor..

I also acid dipped an engine block with bronze cam bearings and frost plugs still in place...It'll eat brasses & bronzes, pit aluminium, dissolve dissimilar metals by electrolysis if left too long..

 

You have to use care - it's acid. Use eye protection, gloves, have an alkaline wash available.
Usefully - cut down plastic milk containers (HDPE?) are very acid resistant and make great mixing, short term storage & dipping containers.
Store in the dark. Light will degrade it. 

 

 




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 2093043 19-Sep-2018 10:41
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Excellent feed back and all recommended products will probably do a similar job.

 

As per the marked answer - Yes, according to the Jenolite Safety Data Sheet https://www.jenolite.net/pdf/jenolite-msds-all.pdf

 

It is '100% Orthophosphoric Acid'

 

Many thanks.

 

Edit: Bad formatted link


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