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Thread: Keeping Tools Rust Free - Wax or Oil?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Austin, TX
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    116

    Keeping Tools Rust Free - Wax or Oil?

    Lately I've been back to filling out gaps in my hand tool collection...

    As I'm working through sharpening stuff. I stare at the squirt bottle of oil I got from a Lie-Neilson hand tool event. And the little can of wax I got in my Veritas Plane Care kit. (I think that was what it was called).

    At any rate... what do folks use?
    I like the convenience of the oil to do a quick wipe down, and indeed when handplaning a little oil wiped on the sole of the plane makes the #8 go oh-so-much like butter.

    I wipe my planes with the oil but I'm still seeing pitting on them. (I sweat like a... I don't know... sweat monster when I hand plane). I'd like to not see my stuff destroyed in my lifetime.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    twomiles from the "peak of Ohio
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    Check out Paul Sellers "Rag in a can". He takes a small can, stuffs a rag into it, leaving a slim pad just above the lip of the can.....then soaks the rag down with 3in1 oil. Any and all bare metal gets a swipe from the can.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
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    Bay of Plenty, New Zealand
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    Camellia oil works for me.

  4. #4
    Move to Tucson.

    3in1, Moble1, Johnson's wax, they all work. If you sharpen with Ark stones rust usually isn't a problem.

    ken

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    South Coastal Massachusetts
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    5,373
    +1 on light oil and Arkansas stones to avoid water in the shop.

    I favor WD40, as it is both cheap and effective.
    I prefer the odor of WD40 to Lamp Oil or 3 in 1.

  6. #6
    Boeshield t-9 for the one time every few months I get bored and decide to spend an afternoon sharpening all my chisels and disassembling and cleaning all my planes.

    Every other time I wipe with a rag that usually has various amounts of both oil and wax on it. It's the same rag I wipe my machinery tops with. Now and then when it gets too gross I throw it out and start fresh.

    I generally sharpen on oil stones so don't worry about it much on blades.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
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    Fripp Island, SC and Darien, IL
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    I live 300 yards from the ocean (less in high tide). I have used all of the above products. The most effective thing I did to prevent rust was purchase a dehumidifier which runs continuously. I use camellia oil on hand planes, hand tools. router bits, etc. Carnauba wax on machine tops.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Austin Texas
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    1,591
    I use Johnson's on my equipment cast table tops periodically and then wipe down the planes with the same. I use a lump of wax to lube the soles when planning. I tend to use some light oil (camellia or one of those other boutique oils) wiped over steel rulers and plane irons after sharpening in the summer time. Summer time around here does assist in detoxifying us from whatever demons plague us, doesn't it?
    David

  9. #9
    I use 2 methods. Johnson wax with mild thinner. But heat up the tool with hot air if I really want to wax to bind with the metal surface. Then there is engine oil for parts which does not contact the wood. Both work in HUMID areas.

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Dickinson, Texas
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    A can of Johnson wax will last a life time. I hit saw and plane handles as well as saw blades with it. Galveston County Texas is no longer a problem.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    SE Michigan
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    I’m in Michigan with high humidity in the summer. Like Jim, I run a dehumidifier all summer in the shop, and made an oil pot. Everything gets a swipe of oil after every use.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Meredith, NH
    Posts
    113
    I use Renaissance wax on machine tables.
    Camellia oil on chisels, plane irons, measuring, and marking tools.
    Wax paper to rub down planes and sometimes machine tops. Wax paper is coated with carnauba wax, so, it's a quick way to wax things.
    Boeshield T-9 on things that need light lubricating oil.
    I only use motor oil for the bearings in my Putnam lathe. The lathe ways and worm gear get chainsaw chain lube.
    When something comes into my shop that needs penetrating oil I use Sea Foam Deep Creep. Sea Foam is good at preventing rust too.
    I live on a lake and things will rust quickly if I do not take these measures in the shop.

    Regards,
    Phil
    "If you want things to go right, pay attention to everything that can go wrong"

  13. #13
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    Mar 2015
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    SE Michigan
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    Phil, cool idea on the wax paper. Never crossed my mind to use it for that. Thanks!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Austin, TX
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    So.. mainly I note that as I sweat all over my planes they start to pit. I'm wondering how any vintage tool survived the eras of no air conditioning with the user dripping on it all the time.
    Or maybee I'm just fat and normal people from the old days didn't sweat a lot all over their tools?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Austin Texas
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    Not everyone from the old days lived here at the 7th Gate To Hell like we do Erich. I worked in Scotland for a couple of years and what they call summer and we call summer bear no resemblance to each other. Still, I get you on the pitting. The one that gets me is to pick up a steel ruler and find a thin, rusty finger or thumb print on it.
    David

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