Cleaning Metal Tools?

Gondor

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What do you use for cleaning metal tools besides soap and water? I use steel wool to remove stains and sometimes WD-40 to clean the sap from wood processing and duct tape residue from box opening.
 

oldsarge

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I like using WD40 for cleaning tools. It not only cleans but helps prevent rust. When I used to live right off the ocean, the salt air was terrible on any metal. I would open my tool box and spray the tools down with WD then close it back up . Some of my tool are over 30 years old and show no rust at all.

At work, sometime tools will be left on our equipment when it's returned. I'll take the rusty and seized up stuff and soak it in diesel fuel for a few days. Then steel wool and oil cleans it back up. We have a lot of extra tool laying around now.
 

CozInCowtown

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Depends on the tool.
Almost any oil will preserve a tool, just clean it when finished and lubricate.
WD40 is a great product along with 3-in-1 oil, I use alot of both.
Coz
 

hummingbird

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We keep a bucket of sand with old oil poured over it. The bladed tools go in there a few times to polish after removing the dirt of course. I still have the gardener's trowel I had when my husband and I got married. It gets put in there after I've used it and cleaned it. It really works for us.
 

Grandpa

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Can't argue with any of the above ideas. I like to keep them clean and use WD40 for final cleaning and protection.

Anyone who has ever plowed dirt with the old "moldboard" plows know the importance of keeping them shiny. We would clean and coat them every night with old waste oil to protect from even that little bit of oxidation caused by the night air. Failure to do so may cause the need to drop a full gear on the tractor the next morning.
 

Gondor

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BTW, after I clean my tools I use gun oil or mineral oil to lubricate them. I use wax for wooded handles and leather sheaths. A little bit of care and they will last you a lifetime.
 

RingTwist

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I like using WD40 for cleaning tools. It not only cleans but helps prevent rust. When I used to live right off the ocean, the salt air was terrible on any metal. I would open my tool box and spray the tools down with WD then close it back up . Some of my tool are over 30 years old and show no rust at all.

At work, sometime tools will be left on our equipment when it's returned. I'll take the rusty and seized up stuff and soak it in diesel fuel for a few days. Then steel wool and oil cleans it back up. We have a lot of extra tool laying around now.
We recently moved to the beach, very close to the ocean. I'm off to clean my tools with WD40; I hadn't heard of using it to prevent rust corrosion.
 

Bojib

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I too use WD-40 and 3-in-1 oil for cleaning/protecting metal tools.

If you have some stubborn rust, you can use a product called "Naval Jelly". It's not just belly button juice. It's actually a pretty stout acid in a gel like form so it will stay in place when you put it on something. I've used it to clean up some stubborn rust in places were I didn't want to use sand paper. After I clean it up I use a bit of WD-40 to protect the surface and keep it from rusting later.
 

ppine

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The big thing with metal tools is to wash the mud off them if they are lanscaping tools, and to remove and displace moisture. Some people keep a box of sand with motor oil in it. Once in awhile they stick their tools in it and wipe them off.
 

charley

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I used to have a bucket of sand with used oil in it. It kept the tools like shovels clean and lubed. As others have said, cleaning the dirt off is an important first step.
 
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