storing power tools?

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Forum topic by jerkylips posted 03-20-2012 09:32 PM 1361 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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409 posts in 2570 days

03-20-2012 09:32 PM

The wife & I are going to be selling our house this spring. The plan is to most likely build a house after we sell, but there’s no way we can start that until we’ve already sold – so we’re stuck with the dreaded ‘double-move’ for the second time in 5 years. We’re going to have to get a storage unit & my table saw will most likely end up in storage over the winter. Any tips/suggestions to minimize rusting of the cast iron? I have treated the top with….something (like boeshield, but a different brand). The saw is used pretty regularly now, but it is in an unheated garage & hasn’t shown any signs of rust yet. Not sure if I’m overthinking this, I just don’t want any ugly surprises when I uncover it.

8 replies so far

View BlankMan's profile


1490 posts in 3353 days

#1 posted 03-20-2012 10:25 PM

If it were me I’d probably try to find that stuff they coat the cast iron and steel with that’s on new machines when you get them. Cosmoline I think it’s called? I’d hate to have the thing rust and have to clean it up. And especially since your time frame seems to be a little open ended at the moment.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

View BentheViking's profile


1782 posts in 2564 days

#2 posted 03-21-2012 01:21 AM

That was my thought oil it up then place a plastic on it just like how other things are done when they are new. Keep the oil doing its job and not getting all over your other stuff. Good luck with the move I am in that middle stage right now with everything in storage hopefully buying something this summer

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

View Doss's profile


779 posts in 2264 days

#3 posted 03-21-2012 03:14 PM

In a pinch, you could run down to a gun shop and buy the oil/protectant used for keeping gun slides and barrels from rusting while sitting in storage. It should be in the gun cleaning section. It may not be the cheapest solution, but it works fairly well and doesn’t really gunk your stuff up very much.

Cheaper still is to use WD-40 (Water Displacement). Just wipe it down and leave a little excess.

Now, getting this stuff off your tools may not be fun, but at least it’s better than cleaning rusty tools or finding out you have some light/moderate surface damage/corrosion.

-- "Well, at least we can still use it as firewood... maybe." - Doss

View rasp's profile


75 posts in 2258 days

#4 posted 03-21-2012 03:18 PM

i would spray the cast iron with wd-40 as suggested, then cover and tightly wrap the iron surfaces with some kind of plastic, vapour barrier, something like that.

or, petroleum jelly.

View Bertha's profile


13528 posts in 2693 days

#5 posted 03-21-2012 03:22 PM

I did this two years ago. I bought a bunch of large black/red rubbermaid containers, the big thick ones. I sprayed all my tools with white lithium lube grease, wrapped them in butcher’s block paper, and taped them with blue painter’s tape. I wrote the tool name on the paint. I popped a few Zerust caps in each bin and in my handtool bins, I put one of those electric no-rust bars that they sell for gun cabinets. My storage unit had a lightbulb, so I got one of those light-bulb to electrical outlet adapters and plugged the bars all in. The only thing that didn’t survive the 14 months in storage was my pressure washer. The tools were just like I put them in there. Also, it was like Xmas opening those boxes (but they get VEEEEERY heavy). Good luck!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Doss's profile


779 posts in 2264 days

#6 posted 03-21-2012 03:26 PM

rasp, I almost suggested petroleum jelly until I remembered how bad that stuff smelled (at least the brand I was buying). It was horrible.

Oh, about wrapping in plastic, check some of the home stores or parcel shippers for large plastic bags (that’s what they ship foam peanuts in). If you can find one big enough to wrap your tools in completely, it would be best. I would try to get the bag situated to where the opening for it is on the side or top of the tool for something like a table or bandsaw (not opening to the ground).

Things like to crawl into your bag and if moisture gets in from the bottom, it has no easy way to escape.

Worst case, get some plastic wrap used for securing pallet loads. Most of the big box stores have it and it should make this go pretty fast.

-- "Well, at least we can still use it as firewood... maybe." - Doss

View Bertha's profile


13528 posts in 2693 days

#7 posted 03-21-2012 04:08 PM

^that plastic wrap on the little cardboard roll gets pretty expensive pretty quick. I remember spending several hundred bucks on that stuff. For ease of use, though, it simply can’t be beat. I wrapped all those rubbermaid bins I mentioned with it.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View DS's profile


2917 posts in 2420 days

#8 posted 03-21-2012 05:50 PM

Lots of good advice on preserving the saw.

I moved last year and had to be out of the old place a month before I could move into the new place. We lived in a hotel for that month. It was less than ideal.

What was really nice was that we used portable storage containers for our stuff.
They dropped them off at the old place so we loaded them in our driveway.
They picked them up and stored them in a climate controlled warehouse for the month, then delivered them to the new place on our move in day. The table saw was in the same container as the piano… moisture wasn’t a problem.

That took a lot of sting off of the double move thing. IMHO, it’s worth looking into.

Best of luck to you.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

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