LumberJocks

How I Do Hand Plane Rehabs #2: Rust Removal and Prevention

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by HokieKen posted 11-14-2016 12:40 PM 1506 reads 1 time favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Breakdown and Evaluation Part 2 of How I Do Hand Plane Rehabs series Part 3: Preparing the Body and Sole »

So, when we left off last time we had determined that this plane was perfectly salvageable and made a list of what all we need to do to it. We determined that all of its parts were present and that we shouldn’t have to make/buy any replacement parts with the possible exception of the iron and chipbreaker.

Here is our subject:

The biggest issue with this guy is the rust. That’s what I normally tackle first and what I’ll be addressing in this entry. The methods I use to remove rust depend on the extent of the rust present, whether or not there is paint/japanning I want to preserve, and whether or not there is nickel plating or other surface treatments I want to keep.

In this case, I will be re-painting the base because the japanning is beyond saving. The frog has some surface rust on the unpainted surfaces and the paint is in good shape so I’ll plan to keep it. The lever cap has nickel plating but it’s mostly gone and there is a lot of rust so I’m not concerned with keeping the plating.

I’ll be using 2 different methods of rust removal. First is a “bath” in a phosphoric acid solution.

There are many different products that remove rust. The one I use almost all the time is Jasco Prep and Prime. It’s a phosphoric acid solution that converts iron oxide (rust) to iron phosphate. I prefer this product for 3 main reasons:

  • It’s reasonably priced/readily available locally
  • It removes existing rust and leaves behind iron phosphate which is anti-corrosive
  • It won’t remove paint or japanning unless there is rust underneath

You can also buy Ospho or buy straight phosphoric acid (if you can find it) and dillute it for the same conversion process. There are several other options for rust removal as well so don’t assume you have to use this. Other chemical agents like Evaporust, Citric Acid, Vinegar etc. that many people use successfully. I have tried Vinegar and Evaporust and for me, phosphoric acid solution is just the easiest and most effective. There is also electrolysis which many people swear by. I’ve never tried it, I’m far too lazy ;-)

So, do a bit of research on the merits of different methods. I’m only going to cover why I like this method, not why I don’t prefer others.

The solution I’m using won’t attack plastics so I use a drywall mud pan to soak my parts overnight. Here are our rusty parts and our supplies:

I laid everything in the mud pan except the base (more on that later) and poured the solution in so that it covers all the parts. The solution starts bubbling almost immediately. I left it overnight and in the morning, it was no longer bubbling. If I still see bubbles coming up in the morning I let it continue to work. I have left parts in for as long as 3 days and have never had any adverse effects from the solution.

Sorry, I didn’t take any pictures of the parts soaking. Use your imagination.

So, after the solution does it’s job, I remove the parts (you should most likely use chemical resistant gloves but I always just do it barehanded) and rinse them in a bucket of water and dish-washing detergent. Then I scrub them with a toothbrush and rinse them well under running water. Finally, I blow them COMPLETELY dry with compressed air.

So what about the solution in the pan? Well, I don’t know when this stuff looses it’s effectiveness but I pour it through a strainer back into the container. I continue to use the same bottle until it doesn’t seem to be doing the job then I toss it and crack a new one. I think this will be my third plane with this bottle and it’s still going strong.

So now, my parts have had the rust converted, I degreased them with dish detergent, I neutralized the solution with water and I dried them with compressed air. Now I spray them all down with an anti-corrosive. Just a light coat and I let it set until I come back to work on them.

I like CRC 3-36 but there are many options. Do some research and take your pick. Now they’ll set and wait while I work on the base.

Here are all of our parts soaking and waiting their next turn:

See how the paint on the frog is untouched but the rust is completely gone?

And here is a closer look at the business end of our iron after the rust conversion:

I’m not feeling real good about saving this guy :-( Here’s the other side of the iron and the chipbreaker. I think the chipbreaker will be okay. We’ll just have to grind the iron back past the pitting and see what we have. In the meantime I think I’ll keep an eye out for a replacement.

Let’s save the base for next time. This entry’s getting longer than I expected…

Thanks for reading and comments and questions are always welcomed!

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!



11 comments so far

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

3253 posts in 1146 days


#1 posted 11-14-2016 01:04 PM



I continue to use the same bottle until it doesn’t seem to be doing the job then I toss it and crack a new one.
- HokieKen

How do you “toss it” i.e. dispose of it?

I first try a non-soak method, but when necessary soak in Evap-o-rust, mostly because it is environmental save to pour out on the ground.

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

4594 posts in 1007 days


#2 posted 11-14-2016 01:26 PM

I dilute it with water (precautionary step, probably not necessary) and pour it on the ground. Dillution probably isn’t necessary but I do it anyway. In fact, some people buy phosphoric acid specifically to use as fertilizer for berries or citrus trees or to use on lawns to adjust soil acidity.

I just looked to see, you can also pour it down the drain as long as it’s dilluted sufficiently. There are no real precautions for small quantities.

I use non-soak methods a lot as well. In fact, I’ll be doing that to the base in the next entry. Stay tuned…

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

3253 posts in 1146 days


#3 posted 11-14-2016 01:51 PM

Yes yes of course phosphorus is one of the components to fertilizer. I wasn’t thinking.

When it becomes winter I don’t like using soak methods as it is too cold in the shop. So I have to do them in the house. (SWMBO might get upset.)

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

4594 posts in 1007 days


#4 posted 11-14-2016 02:03 PM

Good point there Don. I probably should have mentioned the smell. You definitely don’t want to bring this solution inside. It’s not terribly strong but it’s definitely unpleasant!

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

3253 posts in 1146 days


#5 posted 11-14-2016 02:47 PM

I once used Brasso inside and was kicked out of the house.

But the real problem is I don’t have running water in the wood shop during winter. Summer I have a hose.

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

View Don W's profile

Don W

18550 posts in 2436 days


#6 posted 11-14-2016 10:23 PM

Well on your way. I would save the cutter. Cut it back beyond the pitting, it looks like there is plenty meat behind it.

I think I blogged that once. I’ll take a look.

-- http://timetestedtools.net - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

4594 posts in 1007 days


#7 posted 11-14-2016 11:58 PM

Yeah, I think there’s a little life left but after I grind back past the pitting and hone a bevel, I’ll probably be around 3/8” away from the braze line. There’s still several sharpenings left there but she ain’t gonna last forever.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View Don W's profile

Don W

18550 posts in 2436 days


#8 posted 11-15-2016 01:22 PM

3/8” is a lot of sharpening. I don’t know how much woodworking you do, but you’d probably get 5-10 years out of that.

-- http://timetestedtools.net - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

4594 posts in 1007 days


#9 posted 11-15-2016 01:58 PM

Truthfully, it probably will last ME forever Don. My other jointer is a Record 07 with a Hock iron. This plane will have to be something really special to displace that as my primary user.

I did notice that my iron is most likely going to end up shorter than the cap iron. Is that going to cause any issues? Seems like it will reduce the clamping force but I’m not sure if that presents issues during use or not.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View Don W's profile

Don W

18550 posts in 2436 days


#10 posted 11-16-2016 05:12 PM

It will get close, I’ve never seen an iron get shorter than the cap iron. It would probably make it a little more difficult to set, but it should still work even if it is shorter.

-- http://timetestedtools.net - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View Roger's profile

Roger

20891 posts in 2673 days


#11 posted 12-18-2016 09:21 PM

Appreciate all your time and “how-to” about this process.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. Kentuk55@yahoo.com

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com