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  • Rust removal?

    I have aquired 3 or 4 five gal. buckets of copper sweat fittings and brass flare fittings. Sadly they have been out in the elements and allowed to fill with rain water. They are coated with dried on rust. My question is, is there some solution that will loosen the rust so that it may be wiped off or blown off with air. A wire wheel does it where it is able to reach.

    It pains me but they will go for scrap if they don't clean up.
    Jim

  • #2
    You might try a soak in white vinegar and then a good rinse, on the brass anyway, don't know for sure about the copper.
    James

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    • #3
      Phosphoric acid is the main ingredient used in naval jelly and will remove the tarnish or green crud on your fittings. There are a few companies out there that sell it in liquid form in 1 gallon jugs. Start out with a small amount in a margarine tub to see how it works. It should loosen it enough so that it will come off with a wire brush. Make sure you were chemical type gloves as this stuff will take the moisture out of your skin, few days later your hands will look like you have terminal dandruff. Some of the case cleaning solutions for cartridges has this acid as well. I have used the liquid stuff for cleaning out the firing residue from old artillary shells and some steel wool. Hope this helps, Frank

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      • #4
        I have another 'rust' questions..

        We have one of these:-



        ... that we would like to clean up for display. A lot of lightly rusted (semi-stainless?) steel and lots of oxidised ("aircraft" ) aluminium.

        What can we wash this beast with?

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        • #5
          You should be able to find phosphoric acid or muriatic acid at a pool supply or even one of the big box stores.

          Art,

          As to the jet engine, a complete tear down, cleaning & reassembly is probably the only way to go. Got any new apprentices?

          Stan

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Dr Stan

            Art,

            As to the jet engine, a complete tear down, cleaning & reassembly is probably the only way to go. Got any new apprentices?

            Stan

            Stan, no apprentices, about ten Olde Pharts who spend a couple of hours every Wednesday morning! We have more than a couple of dozen aircraft in our little museum so I dont think this engine is going to get more than a cosmetic clean and a nice printed placard!

            It looks like the one in the photo got something the same, the core painted black and 'silver' paint over the once bright metal.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Jim Hubbell
              I have aquired 3 or 4 five gal. buckets of copper sweat fittings and brass flare fittings. Sadly they have been out in the elements and allowed to fill with rain water. They are coated with dried on rust.
              Corrosion maybe of some sort but rust??
              Joe
              Last edited by Joe Rogers; 01-04-2012, 01:14 PM. Reason: to make the quote thingy work...

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              • #8
                As long as there are no ferrous metal bits chunks in it you can use the cleaning dip for jewelry Citric acid of the PH down from the pool supply dept. Make sure you get the one with the highest % of active ingredients.

                Sodium bisulfate, is the primary ingredient used in many pickling solutions.
                If there is to much iron in the mix it will flash plate the next item place in the solution with a micro copper layer. use on non ferrous tweezers, or baskets with the solution, it works better when heated. I use an old crock pot, but any pot non ferrous being heated will work.
                Glen
                Been there, probably broke it, doing that!
                I am not a lawyer, and never played one on TV!
                All the usual and standard disclaimers apply. Do not try this at home, use only as directed, No warranties express or implied, for the intended use or the suggested uses, Wear safety glasses, closed course, professionals only

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                • #9
                  Thanks all, I'll see what I am able to find of the mentioned chemicals.

                  Joe, the brass is not "rusty" but is coated with iron oxide due to there being black-iron pipe nipples in the water along with the brass and copper pieces. It is mostly a cosmetic thing as the brass is unaffected and shines up nicely with steel-wool or the like. I just don't want to spend the time polishing them one by one.
                  Jim

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                  • #10
                    I see. Thought it was all brass and copper stuff. Good luck with the cleanup.
                    Joe

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by The Artful Bodger
                      Stan, no apprentices, about ten Olde Pharts who spend a couple of hours every Wednesday morning! We have more than a couple of dozen aircraft in our little museum so I dont think this engine is going to get more than a cosmetic clean and a nice printed placard!

                      It looks like the one in the photo got something the same, the core painted black and 'silver' paint over the once bright metal.
                      those chems metioned above will turn alluminium black.

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