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Thread: Tool rust prevention

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Dickinson, Texas
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    6,448

    Tool rust prevention

    In the current issue of This Old House Magazine, a reader ask Tom Silva how he prevents rust on his tools.
    I live in Galveston County Texas, so I Know a bit about rust.
    I coat my tools with Johnson's Floor Wax. They do not rust.

    I thought some new woodworkers might be interested.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Austin Texas
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    1,492
    Johnsons has worked for my tools and cast iron tops for years as well Lowell. A can lasts forever too. It also lubes saw sides so they cut easier after an application.
    David

  3. #3
    I use Johnson's. I'm also trying out using a coat of wipe on varnish. The varnish is holding off the rust very well after about 6 mos.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Dickinson, Texas
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    6,448
    I just found two 10" pipe wrenches that were rusty. I hit them with the wire wheel and Johnson's wax and they rust no more.

    Every day, week or so, I find something else that was wet.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    156
    I have similar results form Crystal Clear paste wax, but itís allot more expensive than SC Johnson paste wax, think Iíll try it next time.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Cypress, TX
    Posts
    77
    Add my vote for Johnson's wax. I have been using it for years in a very damp Houston climate. It works well and usually lasts for at least a few months depending on the amount of use of the tool. I find it particularly good for table saw tops and jointer tops.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Kansas City
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    681
    I used Johnson's a ton this summer in KC and my tools rusted a lot. I was feverishly applying it and it wouldn't stop the rust. Not a huge deal, but it makes me sad everytime I look at my table saw top.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Central Missouri, U.S.
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    1,263
    Jacob, I went through the same frustration when using Johnson's only. What I did was use Boeshield T-9 before a final wax finish. No more rust.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    sykesville, maryland
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    279
    If you are getting rust even with Johnson's, are you keeping the surfaces clean and free of sawdust? Sawdust absorbs moisture and will cause equipment to rust. But, yes first treat surface with T9 or gun oil or similar. My shop is unheated/uncooled/uninsulated. It gets very hot, very humid, and very cold. Sometimes I have to watch liquid containers; they will sweat just from the change in the weather. Rule one is no cold drinks on surfaces ever and no liquid bottles of anything left on surfaces overnight. I put on the wax and leave it. I don't polish it after it dries. I leave it thick and dull until I'm doing the next big job. Then I polish is off before using equipment to leave a slick surface. After use, clean off all sawdust and reapply wax. Even if I don't have time to wax, I always dust off the tops. To remove wax fast I use orange furniture cleaner/oil.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    sykesville, maryland
    Posts
    279
    johnsons paste wax is also a good lubricant for wood threads and sliding parts, like a tablesaw fence or drawer glides. I use the stuff everywhere. Cheap, relatively nontoxic, and effective.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Kansas City
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    681
    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Decker View Post
    Jacob, I went through the same frustration when using Johnson's only. What I did was use Boeshield T-9 before a final wax finish. No more rust.
    That was exactly my experience. But I didn't learn it until it was too late for my table saw. But my new router table and bandsaw look fantastic.

    I won't be without Boeshield any more. I will also be installing a minisplit before next summer.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Griswold Connecticut
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    6,350
    The only sure fire way to prevent rust, is to control the environment. I don't have that ability though.
    What has worked for me is a combination of paste waxes, Boeshields, and LPS-3 for long lay ups. I haven't seen any dramatic differences between T9 and a marine paste wax, but that's just my experience. I do like the T9 for spraying internals and irregular surfaces.

    All of my machines tops are coated with a nice marine wax. I think I'm using a Maquires product right now. I let it dry to a haze and remove it with white scotchbrite. I then wax it again, but this time I buff it off with a rag. The machine is then covered with a layer of cardboard, and then 3/4" plywood cut to fit the top, when not in use. This works for all of the machine tops I have except my Jointer, and I have no idea why it doesn't. My planer bed is done the same way.
    I have the hardest time keeping the internals of my Jet 15" planer free of rust bloom. The four columns also require frequent cleaning, and reapplication of a sticky lubricant.
    "The first thing you need to know, will likely be the last thing you learn." (Unknown)

  13. #13
    I have had a chronic problem with rust, and have tried wax first, then boeshield, and finally tried a coat of wipe on poly. The wipe on poly actually seals the top, and it will allow no more rust till it is worn off the top. Using wax over the wipe on poly is great as it makes things very slick.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Central Missouri, U.S.
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    1,263
    I've never tried the wipe-on poly treatment, but have seen it mentioned here a few times. I'm surprised that it sticks to the cast iron.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Redding, CA (That's in superior Calif.)
    Posts
    812
    Our house was partially burned by wildfire last summer. With regard to tools, this has been a tough learning experience for me. After a week evacuation, I checked my tools to see if they still worked. Most did at this time. The "professional" cleaners would not touch any machine with a motor so my wife and I had to clean them. We took the smaller machines to an offsite storage unit, but the table saw, band saw, scms, and lathe remained behind in the garage. Months later the scms would not slide on the bars which had rusted solid. Needless to say the tables on the band saw, table saw, and lathe required many hours to get the rust off. The same thing happened to my hand tools, chisels, clamps, etc.. The best cleaner I found was Eastwood Rust Dissolver. The rust came back to everything in a matter of hours. I recently learned that the chemicals in wildfire smoke very quickly react with the metal chemicals causing the rust to be much worse than just rust caused by moisture. The band saw was affected by the heat that may have caused some plastic items to melt. I replaced it with a new Jet 14". Now the table on it is rusted. I just cleaned it using rubbing compound today and sprayed it with T9. I've been cleaning my chisels using some small scrubber wheels on my Dremel. I then coated them with Renaissance wax. The rust was back the next day! Johnson's wax didn't work as well as T9, but I've covered my table saw with a double thickness of moving blanket (cheap at Harbor Freight). My lathe chisels are on a rack on the wall. I guess I haven't applied enough wax? I'm going to try wipe-on poly and cross my fingers. Any ideas on how to protect my lathe chisels? I have over 50 of them. I'm thinking of just using carbide cutters, but I do enjoy the various types of chisels.
    Project Salvager

    The key to the gateway of wisdom is to know that you don't know.______Stan Smith

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