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Care for Starrett combo square?

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Forum topic by danofpaco posted 397 days ago 1258 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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danofpaco

91 posts in 419 days


397 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question starrett combination square rust

So I came home the other day and there was a bag with a bow in my workshop. My wife had ordered me a Starrett combination square (she must have been sick of hearing me talk about them)!

Now, I live in Minnesota and my workshop is in the garage. I’m still working out insulation and heating/cooling, but for now I deal with moist (and cold!) winters and humid summers.

I want to protect my new combo square! For now it lives inside, but I would really like it to join it’s brothers in the shop. What is the best way for me to protect and care for it? I have some T9 and Johnson’s paste wax. I really don’t want to gum up, or cause any kind of build up – anything that would throw my square out of square.

It has the satin chrome blade and the hardened steel body. Is the t9/wax combo a good idea or not? Something else? What kind of lubricant should I use on the screw/spring part? Advice on how to care for this new piece of equipment so that it lasts me the rest of my days?

Thanks, all!

-- Dan :: Minnesota


16 replies so far

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2232 posts in 853 days


#1 posted 397 days ago

I would wipe it down w/ t9 periodically.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3188 posts in 2462 days


#2 posted 397 days ago

I keep my good measuring tools in my rolling tool cab. Occaisional wipe down with a light oil (3 in 1) and buff off.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View crank49's profile

crank49

3245 posts in 1473 days


#3 posted 397 days ago

I use Camilla Oil on my treasured tools.
Probably any light oil would be fine, but to me the Camilla seems to spread out and cling better than some others. I got it from Highland Woodworking after a suggestion from Chris Schwartz.
Johnson’s paste wax seems to work best on cast iron like my TS top.

And by the way, that wife sure sounds like a keeper. Someone needs a dinner or something.

-- Michael :-{| Diapers and politicians both need to be changed often; and for the same reason.

View CessnaPilotBarry's profile

CessnaPilotBarry

864 posts in 612 days


#4 posted 396 days ago

Use it… love it… try to wear it out!

Like the others mentioned… Just a wipe of any light oil. I use Camilla, because my squares live in the same cabinet as my planes. and the oil is already there. In the past, I’ve also used air tool oil.

-- It's all good, if it's wood...

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2317 posts in 1079 days


#5 posted 396 days ago

I keep mine in my uninsulated garage with no issues. A light coat of oil (I use jojoba) keeps it operating smoothly and rust free.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View IrreverentJack's profile

IrreverentJack

722 posts in 1345 days


#6 posted 396 days ago

she must have been sick of hearing me talk

Dan, If I were you, I’d keep talking to the wife. Take care of her too. -Jack

View danofpaco's profile

danofpaco

91 posts in 419 days


#7 posted 396 days ago

Thanks for the input everyone. I’ll look into picking up some Camilla or 3 in 1.

Is the general consensus to stay away from the wax or T9? I’m pretty new to having any nice tools so I’m still learning all of this – really appreciate the input and patience this community has.

And yes, my wife sure is a keeper!

-- Dan :: Minnesota

View sikrap's profile

sikrap

968 posts in 1861 days


#8 posted 396 days ago

I don’t disagree with wiping it down with Camelia or Jojoba oil, but I would also suggest stopping at your local pharmacy and asking them if they have any dessicant they’re going to toss out. I have a pharmacist that saves it for me and I now have waaaay more than I need. I throw 8-10 pieces in each drawer I keep tools in.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View Tim's profile

Tim

910 posts in 463 days


#9 posted 396 days ago

Paste wax or T-9 certainly isn’t going to hurt it. The paste wax for sure won’t gum it up, it’s practically a lubricant. Paste wax and then wipe down with a very lightly oiled rag with jojoba or camilia oil every time you replace the tool is what I hear the most for important tools. Regularly wiping is the real key. T-9 has people that swear by it, I think it’s meant to be a replacement for the wax, and supposedly buys you more leeway if you don’t wipe it down much with an oiled rag.

And if you really want to be careful, buy or make a storage bag or case for it so that it doesn’t rub up against other metal in your tool chest either. Something about two metal pieces sitting together and the electrons catalyzing the rust reaction. I think it’s called galvanic reaction or something, though that might not be the whole issue. Most of the high end woodworking suppliers sell storage bags for premium planes for this purpose for example.

View unbob's profile

unbob

283 posts in 405 days


#10 posted 396 days ago

There is always Starret tool and instrument oil. Sort of hard to go wrong with that.
http://littlemachineshop.com/products/product_view.php?ProductID=1825

View danofpaco's profile

danofpaco

91 posts in 419 days


#11 posted 396 days ago

unbob, I think your link has a better price than Amazon is that some kind of typo??

Tim, thank you for your thorough response, very helpful and appreciated.

sikrap, I’ve already started collecting those, problem is most of my tools live out in the open for now. Things that live in cases or boxes all have some silica packets thrown in, but I wonder how much good they do if the container isn’t very air tight. They do sell some giant silica boxes on Amazon. I wonder if a few if those placed strategically around my garage would create a fortress of dryness.

-- Dan :: Minnesota

View Tim's profile

Tim

910 posts in 463 days


#12 posted 396 days ago

Dan, that’s just how Amazon prices things. They price most of their things low to make people assume everything is. Other things very from a little to outrageously overpriced. They also try to price based on your browsing habits and vary the prices on a given item throughout the day/year etc.

View sikrap's profile

sikrap

968 posts in 1861 days


#13 posted 395 days ago

Dan, one word of caution about using a paste wax. If you do go that route, make sure the paste wax doesn’t have any silicone in it. Silicone will stain wood (or at least that’s what I’ve been told).

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View crank49's profile

crank49

3245 posts in 1473 days


#14 posted 395 days ago

Whether silicone stains wood or not is not the problem I have with it. Once it’s on wood you can not get it off and no finish will cover it up. Not even paint. Avoid silicone like the plague.

-- Michael :-{| Diapers and politicians both need to be changed often; and for the same reason.

View DaveSJ's profile

DaveSJ

11 posts in 395 days


#15 posted 395 days ago

Humidity isn’t usually a problem where I live in California, but I still don’t risk it with expensive tools…. I use Jojoba oil on all my hand tools to prevent rust, that goes for steel rules, machine squares, chisels and block plane. Camelia oil is good too. I just got a bottle of Jojoba oil from Lie-Neilsen the last time I ordered a replacement plane blade. One bottle lasts a long time as a little goes a long way. Woodcraft and Highland Hardware sell Camelia oil. Just wipe down your tools with a light coating after each use and they should stay new looking.
-Dave

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