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Thread: Popular Woodworking Test of Rust Preventatives

  1. #1
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    Popular Woodworking Test of Rust Preventatives

    I was reading the Q&A section of Popular Woodworking, August 2005, page 15, and in it Christopher Schwarz answered a question on "How to Remove Light Rust From Hand Tool." The article spilled into the next pape, and after Schwarz discussed rust removal, he ended up writing about rust preventatives. Schwarz wrote that he used Camellia oil, but he wrote that "Our tests of rust preventatives didn't put Camellia oil at the top (that would be Fluid Film and WD-40...)." He went on to mention advantages of Camellia oil and why he used it.

    I use Camellia Oil and Johnsons Paste Wax.

    The question is: Does anyone remember the reference that Schwarz is referring to. I would guess that it was published in an earlier edition of PW. I don't think I have the edition, as I only have a very small smattering of older woodworking magazines.

    That said, it would be great to hear about the findings that PW came up with.

    I keep my first couple of chisels, which I have had for about 48 years I believe, in a simple sheath made from a cerial box or something similar. The chisel blade slides into the sheath. I treated the cardboard with WD40, I am pretty sure of this, and then wrapped it with masking tape. Recently I rewrapped the sheat with new masking tape and coated it with spray lacquer to protect the masking tape.

    My two old chisels have not rusted to any appreciable extent over those 48 years, although I did recently clean off a tiny bit of very fine rust, primarily from where the chisel sticks out of the sheath, but it was not significant and cleaned off very easily. For most of those 48 years the chisels received no other rust preventative treatment except to be wiped down with a clean dry rag or tissue when they needed it.

    Recently I have used things like 3 in 1 oil to treat sheaths for other chisels. However, now, looking back at my experience and the answer from Schwarz, I am thinking that maybe I should go back to the WD40.

    WD40 received extensive testing before the manufacturer started selling it. I have done a lot of industrial testing over the last 30 years, and often in industry we have the time, money, and knowledge to do very good testing. That makes me respect the testing that went into WD40. Maybe a lot of us should consider WD40. Don't know.

    Interesting Q&A comment by Schwarz.

    If the testing was good, it might answer Erich's question on best rust preventatives.

    Any information would be appreciated. What do you think?

    Thanks and regards,

    Stew
    Last edited by Stew Denton; 06-03-2020 at 9:09 PM.

  2. #2
    I'm not familiar with the Pop Wood article, but FWW did a fairly comprehensive test in 2012. IIRC, they applied each product to a portion of a cast iron machine top and then subjected it to freeze thaw cycles to encourage condensation much in the same way it might occur in a garage shop in cool country. Then they took the higher rated products and checked to see if they interfered with finishing or gluing wood.

    WD 40 was in the top tier, but IIRC it was a rust inhibitor by CRC that took top honors.

    The usual suspects did not finish in the top tier, although they were better than nothing.
    --Certainty is the refuge of a small mind--

  3. #3
    Stew,

    Forgive me, I can't help myself. The best rust prevention is Arizona .

    All kidding aside a lot of rust could be prevented by simply changing to oil stones vs. water stones for sharpening. About 90% of my sharpening is on oil stones and when I sharpen on a JNat the cutter gets a final wipe with the oil stone rag. The only time I get any rust is when I bleed on the tool and miss cleaning it up.

    ken

  4. #4
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    Ken,

    Good point on Arizona, but I am thinking it might be a tad unhandy for me to keep my saws, chisels, and planes there, if I end up living in Oklahoma. A four day drive every time I need a different chisel? I do understand that it is not that unhandy in your case, however, seeing your tools just on the opposite wall from where you work at the bench.

    I mostly use water stones, but am slowly getting some Arks, carborundum, India oil stones, and have made a strop for exactly the reason you list. I also have a few that I have owned for years and also inherited from my dad. The oil stones will be used in tool chests that I use when I go somewhere for carpentry or woodworking, because the last thing I want to do is put a damp waterstone in a tool chest with my saws, chisels, planes, etc., and then have to travel with it. I haven't had time to play with the oil stones much yet, but used to use such for knives a lot.

    If you could figure out a way to fill up a tool cabinet or chest up with Arizona air in such a way that it would not get away even when you opened to chest or cabinet you would have solved the rust problem for the rest of us.

    Regards,

    Stew
    Last edited by Stew Denton; 06-03-2020 at 10:35 PM.

  5. #5
    I usually take a critical look at those tests and try to take away their positive recommendations. If I remember correctly (highly suspect, lately) Boeshield and Renaissance Wax were two top contenders. I use both of those. WD-40 is a lubricant with a moderate evaporation rate; neither of which are characteristics that would persuade me to spray my table saw top and then become transferred to wood workpieces. I might give the topside of a hand plane a shot of WD-40 before I put it away though.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ken hatch View Post
    Stew,

    Forgive me, I can't help myself. The best rust prevention is Arizona .

    ken
    May a rabid ferret and friendly Gila Monster do the Charleston in your dungarees.

    (Posted from soggy Taxachusetts)

  7. #7
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    The nice thing about WD40 is it's availability.

    I keep a rag in a can saturated with the stuff, next to where I keep my bench chisels.

    One quick "dip" and rust is delayed.

  8. #8
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    I use mineral oil. Everything is in the basement, so humidity is not the issue it would be if everything were in a garage or outdoor shop.

    My father’s stuff is in a barn, and WD-40 and paste wax is what seems to work best. WD-40 to remove, paste wax to prevent.

  9. #9
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    The "WD" stands for Water Displacement....the 40 means that was the 40th try at making it work. The "Smell" is from the Kerosene they use...

  10. #10
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    I use Jojoba oil, which is what Lie-Nielsen recommends. I purchase it at a natural foods coop for less than half of what LN charges. A little goes a long way - and it smells good, too. 🙂

  11. #11
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    That FWW article in 2012 someone mentioned earlier was the reason I bought that issue, and the only issue I wanted to buy since I stopped my subscription in the early '90's. I'm still using the CRC 3.36 that was highest rated in that article, and it's served me well. I remember soon after that issue came out that there was much waling, and gnashing of teeth on forums from people arguing that what they were using was best.

    So far, I haven't heard any new product names that weren't in that test, and have not seen another such "test" to match, or surpass that eight year old one.

    I also use Camelia oil for some things, WD40 for some things, waxes including Renaissance wax for a lot of different things, and other lubricants for many different purposes, but the CRC 3.36 gets the call to coat cast iron tool tops. It's not my favorite smell, but the tool is waiting for me, in good shape, when I go back to it, and some wait a Long time between jobs. It's available in containers up to a gallon, and available in pump spray bottles, that I like to use more than the aerosol spray cans. Amazon sells it in the different forms.
    Last edited by Tom M King; 06-05-2020 at 4:35 PM.

  12. #12
    Then something new for you - try HinderRust by Fluorimics (www.fluoramics.com). Fluorine based. Interesting stuff. Use it on old wrought iron because it creeps like they say.

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