Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: cleaning heavy rust from parts

  1. #1
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    toronto
    Posts
    1,004

    cleaning heavy rust from parts

    I want to share my favourite method for removing heavy rust. I think I have tried all the common techniques even using chelating agents.
    My favourite is electrolysis and I have tried many different witches brews, here is my favourite.
    It is simple, get a 5 or 6 gallon bucket and fill 2/3 full with water. Added 10 lbs sodium carbonate ( aka washing soda, soda ash) ****avoid using baking soda or sodium bicarbonate they are NOT the same*****. Inexpensive sodium carbonate can be purchased at a pool supply store. it is used as a buffer to lower pH. I believe I paid approx $8-10 for 10lbs. I have use mine for over a year now without replacing the soda or electrode.
    Add all the soda ash to your water, you want it saturated and you want some white powder sitting on the bottom. Grab a clean piece of steel as your positive electrode and place at one side of the bucket. Connect the red positive clamp from a battery charger to the this steel electrode. Place the charger away from the bucket in a safe place where it can't fall into the bucket. Be safe, you are using electricity.

    We are now set up. I recommend to remove any grease from the item to be cleaned. I use mineral spirits and allow to dry. If big chunks of rust can be removed easily, do it now.
    Grab a heavy stiff wire like a piece of coat hanger and dangle the part in the solution on the opposite side of the bucket than the red electrode. Connect the black negative charger clip to the stiff wire for the part to be cleaned. Make sure your parts DON'T touch the steel electrode (red/positive). Plug in the charger and I use 6V which draws 5 Amps with my setup and I leave overnight. I find 12V creates too much foam. Small parts can be placed in a small deep fryer basket, for example

    the good news is the Fe+3 ions are reduced by the electrons from the negative power supply/charger to produce iron metal as finely divided black powder at the metal/rust interface. After 6-10 hours or so I unplug the charger and clean the parts up with a stiff brush and usually all the rust just falls off. At times, I may need to repeat on some parts. I usually dry the parts after washing to reduce quick flash rusting of the fine iron particles. A quick coat of oil and we are good to go.

    BTW, this method does not corrode your parts like some other methods.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20181227_141759.jpg 
Views:	52 
Size:	971.8 KB 
ID:	63555   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20181227_141637.jpg 
Views:	83 
Size:	892.2 KB 
ID:	63556   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20181227_141613.jpg 
Views:	69 
Size:	627.8 KB 
ID:	63557   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20181227_141750.jpg 
Views:	56 
Size:	1.24 MB 
ID:	63558  
    Last edited by chromguy; 12-27-2018 at 07:23 PM.
    Regards,
    Miles

    DD '87 Sundance T1, 12PSI, SLH with rear disks
    '87 CSX #432

  2. #2
    Slugmobile & MeanMini Caretaker Turbo Mopar Contributor wheming's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Raleigh Area, NC
    Posts
    4,405

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    I've always wanted to try this.
    Wayne H.

    '91 Dodge Spirit ES 2.5L turbo 5spd
    '05 PT GT 2.4T HO autostick
    '89 Plymouth Acclaim 2.5L turbo auto, "Slugmobile" yes, THE Slugmobile!
    '89 Dodge Caravan SE 2.5L turbo auto, "Mean Mini" yes, Gus' Mean Mini! (Current best 11.7786@113.04 mph! - Jan 15th, 2017 Fayetteville Dragway, NC)
    MeanMini dragracing videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...URZLB1RxGYF6vw
    and other cars, trucks and motorcycles
    https://www.youtube.com/user/SlugmobileMeanMini

  3. #3
    Garrett booster
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southeast VA
    Posts
    131

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    I've done this on my engine block. It works well.





  4. #4
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    toronto
    Posts
    1,004

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    Quote Originally Posted by bamman View Post
    I've done this on my engine block. It works well.
    I assume the strong solution damaged the aluminium intermediate bearing.
    Regards,
    Miles

    DD '87 Sundance T1, 12PSI, SLH with rear disks
    '87 CSX #432

  5. #5
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor Dr. Johny Dodge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Toronto Canada
    Posts
    1,229

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    pointing out with acids etc one needs to be carefull what you dip
    spring steel and hardened steel are no no's

    in fact I killed the little coil spring for the hood on one of my projects just by soaking it in liquid drain cleaner & water for a couple of hours

    not springy .. not at all
    very brittle infact , if I'd soaked it all night it very probably would have shattered like glass instead of just 4 or 5 breaks in the coil

    (wow , chemistry..)

    in my group of acquaintances there is a set of front spindles for a front disc satellite or road runner that need scraped - BECAUSE someone acid tanked them so the hardening is likely questionable now

  6. #6
    Rhymes with tortoise. Turbo Mopar Staff cordes's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Tuscola, IL
    Posts
    19,715

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    I tried some of this, and was very impressed. I too have always wanted to make a setup like in the OP. If I ever have something very large which I need to aggressively clean, I'll probably make one still.


  7. #7
    Garrett booster
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southeast VA
    Posts
    131

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    Quote Originally Posted by chromguy View Post
    I assume the strong solution damaged the aluminium intermediate bearing.
    Perhaps.

    I got it re-bushed it after cleaning the block. Didn't want to risk it.

  8. #8
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    toronto
    Posts
    1,004

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    Quote Originally Posted by bamman View Post
    Perhaps.

    I got it re-bushed it after cleaning the block. Didn't want to risk it.
    You can coat any part with asphalt or similar to protect a critical area, this is a similar idea to what is done in the plating business.
    Regards,
    Miles

    DD '87 Sundance T1, 12PSI, SLH with rear disks
    '87 CSX #432

  9. #9
    Hybrid booster
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Detroit
    Posts
    392

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    Evapo-Rust. $15 at PepBoys. Can't beat it.

  10. #10
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    toronto
    Posts
    1,004

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    Quote Originally Posted by cqlink View Post
    Evapo-Rust. $15 at PepBoys. Can't beat it.
    It does work well, but does not last long when cleaning heavy rust.
    Regards,
    Miles

    DD '87 Sundance T1, 12PSI, SLH with rear disks
    '87 CSX #432

  11. #11
    Super Moderator Turbo Mopar Staff 135sohc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    SoMd
    Posts
    5,886

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    I have been doing this for years, cheap and effective. All said and done the waste slop goes over the back hill because there are no chemicals to concern with.
    1994 Shadow Sedan. 2.2 N/A, A568 355,000 miles. (In the family since new).
    1987 Shelby CSX #418. Long term rebuild and restore.

  12. #12
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor supercrackerbox's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Firth, Nebraska
    Posts
    4,954

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    I don't know what I'm doing wrong, but so far I haven't had much luck with Evaporust. I used it on the large washers that hold the front fender liners behind the front bumper on my F-150.

  13. #13
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    toronto
    Posts
    1,004

    Re: cleaning heavy rust from parts

    Quote Originally Posted by supercrackerbox View Post
    I don't know what I'm doing wrong, but so far I haven't had much luck with Evaporust. I used it on the large washers that hold the front fender liners behind the front bumper on my F-150.
    For a moment let me do the chemist thing (yes I am a chemist). So I have a gallon (3.78L) of EvapoRust and according to the SDS (Safety Data Sheet aka MSDS) it contains 16% of the chelating agent. Check wiki for details on this. So the gallon contains 3780 x 0.16 = 605g grams of agent. If they use EDTA it has a mass of 372g/mol and iron is 56g/mol it will consume 56/372 x 605 = 91g of iron ions. This is approx 130g corrected to rust, as it is usually the red-brown Fe2O3. The EvapoRust is not fussy and it attacks all rust and will eat the entire flake of rust. This is why it is best to remove as much rust by other means, if you have a large part with lots of rust.

    I specifically used the title heavy rust as electrolysis process above does not attack the bulk rust. It converts the rust at the metal/rust interface back to finely divided iron metal (it looked black). This can only occur if the solution can penetrate the rust which is usually easy BTW. Now that the rust is converted at the surface, the flake of rust is removed by the bubbling process or when you use a vegetable brush or similar.
    The downside of electrolysis is that it is a line of site process and as such is not as effective at getting the rust out of small grooves for example.

    After the electrolysis, if I want the part cleaner in crevices etc, I will then use the EvapoRust.
    Regards,
    Miles

    DD '87 Sundance T1, 12PSI, SLH with rear disks
    '87 CSX #432

Similar Threads

  1. cleaning rust off cylinder wall
    By Fox in forum Engine - Block, Piston, Heads, Intakes
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 08-12-2013, 03:06 PM
  2. General Garage Cleaning: Hybrid parts, new/ stock parts.
    By TurbododgePirate in forum Parts For Sale
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 09-23-2012, 09:34 PM
  3. General Cleaning out some spare parts
    By quantum in forum Parts For Sale
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 12-20-2008, 11:25 PM
  4. Engine cleaning out parts bin
    By jrye68 in forum Parts For Sale
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-08-2008, 06:42 AM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •