Electrolysis rust removal - Router Forums
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post #1 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
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Default Electrolysis rust removal

There was some interest in another thread on using electrolysis so I thought I'd post how/what I did on my PM jointer rather than hijacking that thread. I am certain you can Google this and find many variations to this process but this worked for me so I'm good with my method, but feel free to chime in and show how you've done this.

A few years ago I picked up a PM 54A jointer found on CL. The jointer had been in a non-climate controlled storage building and subject to humidity so it had what I thought was surface rust. When I got it home I realized the rust was a little more than I had initially realized.

When I brought it home it looked like this (soaked with WD-40 in this photo) -
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-rusted-beds-fence.jpg

Kind of heavy in some areas -
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-more-rust.jpg

Ugly spot there in front of the cutterhead, which doesn't look too good, either -
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-rusted-cutterhead.jpg

Here's the cutterhead out of the jointer -
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-cutterhead-before-electrolysis.jpg

What I have here is a towel wetted with water and baking soda. I don't remember how much but in a 5 gallon pail I think I used about 2 gallons of water and about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of baking soda. I wrung the towel out about 75% and placed a sacrificial sheet metal plate I picked up at Lowe's on top of the towel. Then I hooked my battery charger, one lead to the jointer and one to the metal plate. Then I placed some weight on the metal plate to make sure there was good contact. In this case I used some Honduras Mahogany cutoffs from some columns.
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-electrolysis.jpg

After about 3-4 minutes the amperage gauge goes to about nothing which indicates the towel is now dry and has done all it is going to do. This is after removing the towel and no additional effort applied to the bed other than using the same towel to wipe the bed where the rust was.
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-after-electrolysis.jpg

Far less rust, looks pretty good -
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-less-rust.jpg

Here's the cutterhead wrapped in a rag and with bailing wire wrapped tightly to make sure there is good contact. I hooked the leads up, gave it 3-4 minutes, and pulled the rag off.
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-cutterhead-electrolysis.jpg

Here's the cutterhead after Electrolysis and a little buffing with a Scotch-Brite pad -
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-cutterhead-after-electrolysis.jpg

And here's the finished machine. Looks good, runs good, and not a lot of effort to clean up using this process.
Electrolysis rust removal-pm-54a-finished.jpg

Thanks for reading!
David
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Last edited by difalkner; 03-28-2016 at 08:53 AM.
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post #2 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 08:41 AM
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That's a great result. Does the positive lead go to the plate or to the rusted equipment?

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post #3 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 08:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by difalkner View Post
There was some interest in another thread on using electrolysis so I thought I'd post how/what I did on my PM jointer rather than hijacking that thread.

Thanks for reading!
David
thank you for posting...

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post #4 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 08:53 AM Thread Starter
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That's a great result. Does the positive lead go to the plate or to the rusted equipment?
Positive to the plate, negative to the equipment. I don't remember if I tried it the other way or read somewhere to do it this way but it worked so if I have to do it again sometime I'll probably do it the same way.

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post #5 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 09:45 AM
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Positive to the plate, negative to the equipment. I don't remember if I tried it the other way or read somewhere to do it this way but it worked so if I have to do it again sometime I'll probably do it the same way.
The Negative should always be attached to the piece being de-rusted, so that the metal transfer, (replacement), is to the rusted item. If you do it the other way, Positive to the rusted piece, the metal transfer will be to the sacrificial plate/rod.

I use a five gallon bucket to de-rust hand plane bodies when I refurbish them.

This is a really innovative way to de-rust large flat surfaces...THANKS!
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post #6 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 12:58 PM
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The results are stunning. Thanks for sharing that. I'd still like to kick the person in the butt hole who let it get that rusted to start with. It should be a crime to let that happen to a fine piece of machinery like that.
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post #7 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 01:14 PM
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An amazing result! Thanks for the How-To.

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post #8 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 01:25 PM
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I amazed at the outcome . I thought that jointer was pretty much scrap metal in the beginning

I donít always insulate , but when I do .
Ok ,I never insulate
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post #9 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-29-2016, 07:00 AM
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Amazing results.
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post #10 of 61 (permalink) Old 03-29-2016, 09:03 AM
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Yup, like Rick, I thought that was junk and look at it now! Very nice, thanks for the info David.
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