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FrankB
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PostSubject: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-18, 10:44 pm

Last Friday I was given over 50 sockets, punches, and some wrenches. They were all rusty. Some extremely so.
I had a gallon of muratic acid, and diluted it a bit into a plastic bucket.
The sockets were strung on stainless wire and placed into the acid, along with the other tools. (Wearing eye protection and acid resistant gloved too.l
I checked them Sunday and they are still bubbling, with the rust scum floating on top.
I put the bucket in the sun, as the acid works better warm, and covered it with a sheet of plastic.
I will again check it tin a day or two.

Much of the trst is already eaten off.
Some of the items were in really poor shape, and I dont expect them to be useable, even after treatment. After all, this is an experiment.
These are mostly the cheap Chinese sockets apparently from a kit. But at that, they went to 32mm.

I try to agitate the bucket a couple of times a day also.

I will post as this progresses. I did wipe off the grease before putting them into solution too.
The home comp I jyst bought had the mother bd fail, so I cant attemp to post before n after shots. Posting from my phone now.
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Cliff Jones
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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-19, 8:02 am

So what happens with the acid when your finished with it? Can You still reuse it?
Can you neutralize it with baking soda? How do you know what strength to use? Or just continue to experiment.

The closest thing I have used for rust is Naval Jelly, but not in mass quantities.
What Brand of computer did you have fail?
That is so aggravating to have that happen, I hope it was still under warrantee?

Speaking of Cleaning to get back on subject. I have always used Isopropyl Alcohol for cleaning anything electronic. But there are times I wish I had something that was as safe but quicker. Somebody suggested Gin or Vodka, So my investigation started at Wal-Mart Drunks supply store. LOL
Nothing I looked at there was more than 40% alcohol and the lowest price was something like $8-9 before the 20% State surcharge and sales tax on top of that. I wonder If they add the sales tax first or Last?, I'm sure those added none posted prices (which is wrong in my opinion) will make additional revenue depending on which way you add them( Just my mind working overtime-LOL). But anyway While I was there, you wouldn't believe the helpful comments on choosing the best one for cleaning and of course they made comments of " I don't drink but I have heard) Suspect  affraid 

The price is way too High for my intent so squash that Idea!
I have heard you can purchase 180 or 190 proof grain Alcohol some where, maybe a pharmacy? But that stuff will eat plastics or melt some plastics and remove markings from parts.

I just purchased a AN/ TV-7 tube tester and cleaned the grunge with IsoAlcohol, and used Q-tips and an acid brush with paper Towels. It took me about an hour to cut through the dirt and smoke film on the faceplate, and it Looks OK now, but some where I heard there are some good cleaners that won't damage the finish. I think one of them is Goop. Any experience along that line?
Thanks for posting Frank!
Very interested in your experiment to inform us.

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MEZLAW

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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-19, 9:31 am

I have had goop attack some plastics, but I have good luck with goo gone.

A few years back I was at an antique seminar in London, and learned about cleaning stickers off of fine china with lamp oil.  I find lamp oil to clean very well without harm to just about every type of material.
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FrankB
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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-20, 1:39 pm

It can be neutralized with water, or taken to the hazohouse at the dump.
It can be used straight, or diluted with water. NEVER put water into full strength acid. It can explode and burn/ eat u badly.

Yes, u can reuse the acid until its "dead". It just doesnt work as well the more diluted and dirty it gets.

Lamp oil- just about any kind of oil will remove label glue, truth be known.

Ammonia cuts thru the dirt and smoke film real good. Just has bad smell till it dissipates.

Isopropal alcohol will work but not as good. But no oil in it like rubbing alcohol.

Wd40 works good at removing labels n stickers. So does using a heat gun. It softens the adheasive and the label peels right off.

I have used goop, but it seems to have an abrasive in it. I may be wrong on that. Its great for smearing on grease covered clothes. Let set overnite and wash. Washing soda works well too. Slopped dirty engine oil on pants during oil change, and put a borax paste on it overnite and oil washed right out.
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19&41

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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-21, 4:54 pm

You might also look into using electrolysis to remove rust.  There are many instructive articles on the process and it uses water and washing soda.  The results look pretty nice too.

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MEZLAW

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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-21, 6:23 pm

19&41 wrote:
You might also look into using electrolysis to remove rust.  There are many instructive articles on the process and it uses water and washing soda.  The results look pretty nice too.

I have found a few places on line with instructions for this. I still have not set it up.
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MEZLAW

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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-21, 8:21 pm

Here is a link for electrolysis cleaning/rust removal;

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MEZLAW

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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-21, 8:24 pm

This is a better website in my opinion;

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19&41

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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-21, 8:37 pm

The first thread I saw on using electrolysis was on a firearms forum. The person was using it to clean a .45 auto he had found along the road near where he lived. I was really surprised how well it came out.

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FrankB
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PostSubject: Re: tool cleaning experiment   2014-08-21, 9:48 pm

UPDATE!: Results of the Muratic Acid cleaning process:
After 4 days in the bucket I carefully washed off the sockets and tools.
Mistake #1: I failed to totally degrease some of the items and the acid did not eat thru the grease.
Mistake # 2- I should have used it full strength, instead of diluting it down a bit.

Plus side: Leaving it in the sun speeded up the process. So did agitating it a couple of times a day.
The acid had quit bubbling even when I agitated it, so I pulled the sockets out.

The smell of this acid was quite pungent, so I left it outside and covered the bucket with a sheet of plastic with vent holes in it, from the bottom of an old printer I scrapped out. I did this to keep the cats and other critters out of it- as if the smell would not have driven them away!

OK so the acid DID eat the rust away quite well- where I had no grease on them.
Some pitting was 1/8" deep where the rust had really eaten the metal away.
The items that had rust under the chrome plating, had the chrome fall off or hanging off, due to the rust being eaten off. Got some sharp pieces of chrome plating on them. Enough you might cut yourself or at least abrade the skin.

That being said, it did a real good job! Some of the Torx driver sockets that I had thought total write offs were saved. Some I could see had been badly abused, and the flukes severely damaged- not fromt he acid. Others had the entire tips that had been deeply rust covered turn into a black spongy looking material.
Scrap metal as far as they are concerned.
I was able to save ALL the sockets, metric & standard. Some of the socket screwdriver bits and torx too, as well as a couple of punches and wrenches are still useable.
I will clean with brake cleaner or starting fluid, prime and paint.
many of the sockets had rust in the square holes the ratchet goes into. It cleaned that out quite well, as well as any surface rust. many sockets do have varying amounts of pitting depending on how deep the rust went into the metal.
Many have missing chrome plating areas from the rust getting under the plating, but should not effect their use. paint will keep them from rusting again.

CONCLUSION:
The experiment was a success. Even though they were 'freebie" cheap Chinese sockets, they are for the most part useable. If I can even get one use out of them, they will have paid for themselves. (Especially the 32MM socket that fits the front hub nuts on my Subaru!).

Note: The inside edge of the plastic bucket at the waterline had a nice coating of black greasy scum on it, rendering it pretty useless except for acid bath in the future. That greasy scum really sticks to your skin too, and requires a lot of work to get it off. I picked this bucket for this purpose as the handle bail mtg. points had broken out, so it was expendable.

Next experiment will be using molasses and water. I just need another batch of rusty tools to try.
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