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Did EvapoRust cause this?

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  • Did EvapoRust cause this?

    While working at my bench, I heard this "PING" and found this caliper lying there with no top spring on it. I found both parts of the spring scattered amid the mess on the bench. The tool had soaked in Evapo Rust for a couple of days, then was rinsed with water, dried, given it a shot of WD40. Now I'm wondering if the other tools that I got the same treatment are going to fall apart as well. Or was this just a coinkydink?
    Click image for larger version  Name:	IMG_1629.JPG Views:	0 Size:	3.07 MB ID:	1909743
    Last edited by Dave C; 11-10-2020, 05:15 PM. Reason: forgot to load the pic
    “I know lots of people who are educated far beyond their intelligence”

    Lewis Grizzard

  • #2
    Had the exact same thing happen to me. It appears Evaporust doesn't like spring steel, especially spring steel that is under stress. Have heard of others having the same problem. It seems that a short immersion is OK but don't leave it in very long.


    • #3
      Ok, so Evapo Rust is not the miracle liquid we thought it would be...


      • #4
        Apparently not, this is very interesting. I would love to know the scientific explanation for this one.



        • #5
          This kind of thing is often attributed to hydrogen embrittlement, which can be caused by exposure of hardened steels to acids or electrochemical processes. Evaporust, being a chelate, is neither of these. i always assumed that hardened steels would be OK in chelate based solutions, but maybe not. A call to Evaporust might shed some light.

          For just a little more, you can do it yourself!


          • #6
            That sounds like a scientific explanation to me. The FAQ page on the bottle does mention that it will remove bluing but I don't recall seeing anything about springs or spring steel.

            JL ....


            • #7
              or maybe the only thing that was holding the spring together was the rust that was removed.


              • #8
                This was discussed here and on PM a while back

                The OP had 4 out of 11 caliper springs snap.


                • #9
                  There is Stress corrosion, which is more or less immediate, during the soak. It usually is not a break like that. I do not now if a cold soak will do sufficient embrittlement to do what that has done. It is possible.

                  ALL the popular methods of rust removal, including ER, Electrolysis, phosphoric, vinegar, etc will certainly do stress corrosion, which happens while in the material. I assume many will do the embrittlement as well, it just takes free H+ ions, which even water has.

                  ER claims not to be an acid, which would have plenty of H+ depending on PH, but obviously it may have the ability to produce embrittlement.

                  Or, the issue may be unrelated, although the edges look so clean I do not think the crack was pre-existing.

                  ER may have attacked a crack and deepened it, leading to the break. That would be classic stress corrosion.
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                  Hashim Khan

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                  • #10
                    The break looks clean on both pieces, with no apparent sign of any cracks. Of course there could have been a microscopic flaw that the ER found. I'm just glad it was one of the Sampson tools, and not a Starrett.
                    “I know lots of people who are educated far beyond their intelligence”

                    Lewis Grizzard