22nd Sep 2007, 08:24 PM #1
What do you do to prevent rust to your hand tools?
I learnt today that hand tools don't keep themselves rust free by themselves. I store most of my tools using the cunning "on-the-bench" storage system. Well, after a couple of weeks away from my chisels, I picked them up today and noticed that they've got some rust marks on them - and this is Brisbane! Rust must be even more of an issue for some of the wetter climates. This was right after removing the rust from the table of my second hand planer/thicknesser. Today must be the day for rust...
I've mostly been wiping down my tools using a WD40 drenched rag after using them (as recommended by Christopher Schwarz on his blog), but have been a bit slack about it. The WD40 rag method would be a bit of a pain in the ass as far as planes go - removing the irons and wiping down after every use.
I'm curious to hear what other forumites do to care for their hand tools - how do you keep them rust-free?
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22nd Sep 2007, 08:31 PM #2
Light machine oil is better than WD40 which I find breaks down over time. Better is paste wax (not floor wax; ubeaut trad wax or similar).
Really keen folks use Camelia oil.
Added: or heavy duty stuff like Inox, Lanoguard etc. But I don't like the way Lanoguard stays sticky.Cheers, Ern
22nd Sep 2007, 08:36 PM #3
I use UBeaut Wax as well.
In fact I use it frequently when hand planing to the sole of the plane.
22nd Sep 2007, 11:28 PM #4
Thanks for bringing it up Jisk. I have the same problem as well - different reason though; young son likes to imitate dad but leaves the tools outside, in the rain, which can be an issue when I am away for a week or so...
Another use for UBeaut wax as well..
23rd Sep 2007, 05:57 AM #5
Just a comment on the wax though: if you get a drop or two of condensation on the bare metal as opposed to humidity, you'll still get rust. DAMHIK.Cheers, Ern
23rd Sep 2007, 06:22 AM #6
I also find that I sweat a lot working in QLD summers. I find sweat is a super rustter, most of my planes can be forensically identified from finger prints!
I think some of the hanging holes might also have come from previous owners labouring over a job.
23rd Sep 2007, 07:19 AM #7
Don't know if this helps, but when I was in my gun nut phase, and having particularly acidic skin residue, I used to spray my cap and balls down with carb cleaner after cleaning and then use a heavy gun oil (I forget the name) to wipe them down with. After a long boat trip (45 days or so) my firearms would be rust free, even in the 80-90% humidity we have here.
I use a similar technique with my tools now when I finish a project, but, like you said, with wd40 and have had no problems. Just like with me, it might be a skin issue."If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infinite."
23rd Sep 2007, 10:50 AM #8
23rd Sep 2007, 11:31 AM #9
Lanotec's the go!
Im a Lanotec fan some reckon it stays a bit too sticky but I've found a light application n wipe over does a great job. I've been using it on Handplanes and machine beds for a while now
Bottom line no rust!
REgards LouJust Do The Best You Can With What You HAve At The Time
23rd Sep 2007, 08:49 PM #10
Oil of cloves or clove oil
24th Sep 2007, 06:56 AM #11
Maybe 'bluing' is the best option? Or is this just cosmetic?
See Bob Smalser's articles on Wood Central.Cheers, Ern
24th Sep 2007, 08:16 AM #12
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I'm with Lou. I use a lanolin spray and wipe off, the heat in Sydney (even in winter) hardens the lanolin enough so it doesn't go sticky.Cheers
If it were done when 'tis done, then 'twere well it were done quickly
24th Sep 2007, 10:39 AM #13
I use Camellia Oil on my metal tools however I prefer wooden planes now and so am using a Tung Oil and Bees wax blend, I wipe down my tools after every use. It forms a nice protective layer.
I think it is not so much what but as long as you "Do" something, to keep the oxygen away from the metal.
Lanolin and Linseed is a very classical European method's. My only concern would be the acids in Animal Fat's and in some of these preparation which over decades and centuries are sure to do some damage.
Clove oil has been mentioned, the Samurai and those who maintain their traditions today always used an oil that smell like Clove oil, I think it is a camellia and clove oil blend as it is not pure clove oil (clove is to make it smell nice, those refined samurai). This blend keeps sword that are very high carbon and prone to rusting clean and rust free for over 500 to a 1000 years and going strong. Remember that blood is very corrosive to high carbon steel, and many of these sword have tasted human blood and have managed to survive intact, to the present day.
P.s. In a related topic some Japanese Swords "Nihon-to" like the taste of blood, these are said to have a dark spirit and reflect the intent and spirit of the smith who forged the sword. I have given blood to such a sword.
24th Sep 2007, 12:44 PM #14
... hmm, may explain why the lathe was painted black
Can someone comment on the properties of cast iron?
It seems to keep on soaking up whatever you put on it so must be porous. As posted earlier, even a good wipe of wax didn't protect my jointer top from a few drops. What's going on? Not possible to fill the 'pores' permanently?Cheers, Ern
24th Sep 2007, 06:58 PM #15
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Prevent ruston cast iron
My best method to prevent rust on cast iron.
- Scrub down top with scotchbrite or fine steel wool to get rid of any surface rust.
- Wipe clean with rag
- Rub board wax or parrafin wax over entire surface
- Rub down with rag
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