(Topic ID: 237984)

Vinegar and Rust Experiment


By PinJim

48 days ago



Topic Stats

  • 27 posts
  • 7 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 46 days ago by PinJim
  • Topic is favorited by 3 Pinsiders

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    #1 48 days ago

    I did a little experiment with vinegar to see how it performs vs. evaporust. In short, vinegar did not do as well in my opinion, but the results were acceptable.

    The part shown is from a 1972 Gottlieb Flying Carpet. I soaked it for 24 hours in Kroger brand apple cider vinegar.

    The first pictures are the raw part, without any cleaning or attempts to remove the rust. Note the extensive rust on the back side, and around the coin slots.

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    #2 48 days ago

    Here’s the setup. An old turkey roasting pan. And the Apple cider vinegar. Note that we will be having sweet and sour turkey next thanksgiving.

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    #3 48 days ago

    These pictures are of the part after 24 hours in the vinegar. Not a lot of change. There is one shiny spot above one pricing insert cutout. That’s where I rubbed my finger on the part. And I had to rub fairly hard. And use my fingernail a little to pick away the rust. Vinegar doesn’t dissolve rust like evaporust does, or at least not as quickly. That much is clear. And the rust on the backside in still fairly heavy....
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    #4 48 days ago

    I wanted to rub off the rust with something other than my finger, ha. I chose Never Dull as my weapon of choice. It’s not abrasive, so the risk of scratching the surface seemed low.

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    #5 48 days ago

    And here are the final results. I spent less than 2 minutes rubbing the item with Never Dull. The rust on the front side came off fairly easily. The rust on the backside was more stubborn, and frankly, I’m not that worried about it. There’s some pitting on the front, as to be expected.

    I’m happy with the results at 20% the price of evaporust. I suppose I could have soaked it longer and maybe more rust would have come off the back. I also was worried about it eating away at the metal. Maybe a bit over cautious, but again, I’m happy with the results.

    Next will be the coin door. I’ll add pictures for that too.
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    #6 48 days ago

    So do you prefer this method over Evaporust?

    #7 48 days ago

    I've used white vinegar before. I generally take an old toothbrush and most of the rust comes right off.

    I prefer it to "chemicals".

    Nice write up.

    #8 48 days ago

    Let it soak longer and you will get better results. I have used vinegar but I have better luck with molasses. Mix a small amount of molasses with water and let your parts soak for 3-4 days. Better than vinegar, IMO.

    This $4.00 bottle will make up gallons of mix.

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    if you live close to a Tractor Supply you can get the type of molasses for wildlife for $8.00. This will be a lifetime supply.

    https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/evolved-habitats-molasses-1-gal-jug

    If you have a small battery charger you can use electrolysis for rust removal. I have tried this and it works quite well, but molasses works for me.

    I have a gallon of Evaporust. It works OK. But the other ways are biodegradable.

    #9 48 days ago

    Isn't Evaporust rather environmentally friendly?

    #10 48 days ago

    I've done the electrolysis on s motorcycle tank before. Very cool.

    I later did vinegar but was afraid of creating pin holes, so limited duration for that.

    I agree, I feel better about dumping rusty vinegar than evaporust.

    #11 48 days ago

    Honestly I prefer evaporust. I’ve used it in the past with great results. But I’m fixing/shopping a machine for a neighbor for free, so I’m doing it on the cheap. I hadn’t seen any posts that outlined the results of vinegar, so I thought I’d contribute. After all, I get a lot of good info from here.

    Vinegar seems to get the job done. $50 for 2 gallons of evaporust is more than I’m willing to spend on this one....

    Here’s where I’m at on the flying carpet so far, it’s turning out very nice.

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    #12 48 days ago

    The coin door is in the bath. Will post pictures tomorrow night of the results. Here are the before pictures.

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    #13 48 days ago

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    #14 48 days ago

    I have the 4" tube setup for doing legs. Started with a gallon of Evapo and have been topping it off with white Vinegar. Been using the same rig for two years now. Probably done 50 sets of legs and anything else I can put in it. Never dump out the mix. Once in a while I run it through a strainer to clean out the gook.
    Probably more vinegar the evapo by now. Still works great. Usually leave legs in for a week. No rubbing needed to get any rust off.

    #15 48 days ago
    Quoted from cottonm4:

    Let it soak longer and you will get better results. I have used vinegar but I have better luck with molasses. Mix a small amount of molasses with water and let your parts soak for 3-4 days. Better than vinegar, IMO.
    This $4.00 bottle will make up gallons of mix.
    [quoted image]
    if you live close to a Tractor Supply you can get the type of molasses for wildlife for $8.00. This will be a lifetime supply.
    https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/evolved-habitats-molasses-1-gal-jug
    If you have a small battery charger you can use electrolysis for rust removal. I have tried this and it works quite well, but molasses works for me.

    I have a gallon of Evaporust. It works OK. But the other ways are biodegradable.

    I’m kinda blown away by the molasses thing. Who knew? Something to try next time. How do you keep parts from flash rusting after removal?

    #16 48 days ago
    Quoted from PinJim:

    I’m kinda blown away by the molasses thing. Who knew? Something to try next time. How do you keep parts from flash rusting after removal?

    You have to work them. I have a 4" tube for legs as the other poster does. I read 2 oz. per gallon does the trick but I make my mix stronger ( you know, the weed killer says it will do 5000 sq. ft. when truth is closer to 1000 sq. ft. )

    The stuff does get rank. It is an organic product and sweet. The flies and moths got trapped in my solution all of the time. It will get moldy. THe water evaporates but like the other guy, I just keep adding water.

    For legs with light rust a couple of days soak works. For the real heavy rust down at the bottom I may soak for 10-14 days. If the chrome is gone all you will have left is black spots; Same with any rust removal process.

    As soon I pull them and rinse them I manually dry them with a towel. I don't don't let them air dry or surface rust will appear. On the inside of all my legs I will spray them with silver or gray paint. Some times on the outside I will hit them will some spray can clear or just some wax.

    I did a Gottlieb coin door with vinegar once like the one you are doing. Following the grain I scrubbed with a scotch brite and toweled it dry. Then hit it with some wax. But you might try some spray can clear to help keep the rust away. Semi-gloss clear might look close to natural.

    Jay Leno's Garage had a father/daughter business team on one time who sells a special product to keep the rust from coming back for around a year. I can't remember the product but it looked cool.

    P.S: I discovered the molasses trick when I was watching a you tube video of a couple of guys removing rust from some old car body panels. He was real cagey about what they were using and talking like they had something proprietary but said it had a sweet taste. In the end, the only these guys had were some big soak tanks.

    I googled how to remove rust and the molasses thing came up big time. All of these car guys are de-rusting their old car skin panels with molasses and they were proud of what they were doing.

    #17 47 days ago
    Quoted from mbwalker:

    Isn't Evaporust rather environmentally friendly?

    Yes, you can read details here: https://evapo-rust.com/technical-info/

    #18 47 days ago

    I pulled the first coin door part simply because it think it’s as good as it’ll get. At about 12 hours into the soak, I pulled the part and used Never Dull to clean off the rust, thought being that it’s knock off the heavy stuff and let the vinegar get to the deeper rust. Really, I probably could have pulled it then, but I let it go another 7 hours. So it went 19 hours total. Pictures are after I once again shined it up with Never Dull, which has some sort of petroleum product in it - hoping this adds some rust protection. There’s some obvious pitting of the metal, but the rust is gone. And it came off very easily.

    The pictures make the pitting look rusty, but the rust is gone. It’s just pitting.

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    #19 47 days ago

    Looks good. I'd hit that with some semi-gloss or flat clear to protect it. You would have to wipe off the Never Dull with some alcohol

    #20 47 days ago
    Quoted from cottonm4:

    Looks good. I'd hit that with some semi-gloss or flat clear to protect it. You would have to wipe off the Never Dull with some alcohol

    I’ve never used clear on anything before. I guess I’m always worried it’ll chip or crack, especially when I’m putting the part back in and potentially flexing the metal. Have you ever had that issue?

    #21 47 days ago
    Quoted from PinJim:

    I’ve never used clear on anything before. I guess I’m always worried it’ll chip or crack, especially when I’m putting the part back in and potentially flexing the metal. Have you ever had that issue?

    Maybe a coat of wax would take care of any rust issues?

    #22 47 days ago
    Quoted from PinJim:

    I’ve never used clear on anything before. I guess I’m always worried it’ll chip or crack, especially when I’m putting the part back in and potentially flexing the metal. Have you ever had that issue?

    Your are not going to be flexing any metal very much, if at all. And you are just going to be putting on one light coat for protective purpose only--to help keep the rust from coming back. It is not going to crack. If you lay on 15 coats it might crack.

    Here is one thing you can do before you reinstall. Get some masking tape. The regular light straw color is cheapest and will work fine---but you need to remove it as soon as you finish the job. Regular masking tape, if left on for a few days/ weeks will NOT come off. The shit gets as hard as a rock; I have not seen anything like it.

    Or you can get the blue painter's masking tape which will peel away easily. but it does not stick all that good.

    Anyway, mask off the parts you have painted and then install them. The tape will help protect your finish. Once installed, peel the tape off.

    #23 47 days ago

    Thanks for the feedback. Given that it’s not my machine, I’ll probably wax it and move on. Next time I do one for myself I may experiment more.

    #24 47 days ago

    Interesting alternative methods. As someone stated above, evapo-rust can be used many times. Therefore not nearly as expensive as one might think. I too just top off a 4 inch PVC tube occasionally. The tube will accommodate many parts, lockbar bar receivers, lock bars, legs. It is biodegradable and can be gotten rid of safely. People are offering different options for preventing the rust from returning , nothing is perfect but I have found this product to be very good at polishing and includes silicones that supposedly help prevent return of oxides. Great product in my opinion, have tried many polishers. Use Brasso on brass items but for anything else, this stuff is great. Check out the reviews.

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    #25 47 days ago

    And here’s the coin door. Again, 24 hour soak. Never Dull polish afterwards. Note that some of the rust around the “game start” button did not come off. But otherwise, it cleaned up nicely.

    One thing that did go somewhat wrong. The bare metal parts on the back of the door flash rusted almost immediately after taking it out of the vinegar bath. Once again I turned to the Never Dull. It stripped away the flash rust and put down some petroleum base, and the rust was inhibited. So all good now.

    Overall I’m pleased with the results of this experiment. Somewhere in the next two weeks I’ll try the legs, which of course have more significant rusting - especially around the leg levers.
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    #26 47 days ago

    That door looks super !!

    #27 46 days ago
    Quoted from cottonm4:

    That door looks super !!

    Thanks! I’m happy with it. Hope the owner is too. It belonged to my neighbors brother, who died recently. The son of the deceased inherited the machine, and I could tell by talking with him that the machine holds a lot of memories of the past. So I’m doing what I can to clean it up a bit while also fixing what’s broken (which as usual, was mostly frozen steppers).

    Here’s the door installed. One more thing done!

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