Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Vinegar solution. Rust removal the stinky way.

Rust, rust, rust, is what you hear, when you talk to anybody who has ever worked on old cars.

Hot rodding seems harder now, than it was 60 years ago, when guys would pick up a 30's car and just build it, without ever mentioning rust.
We are pretty lucky here in California, we don't encounter severe cases, like our East Coast or European counterparts, but we still have to deal with it.
After reading several methods on removing rust, I decided to give vinegar a try and I have to tell you, it freaking works.

Here is how it works:
Get some sort of container, big enough to fit you part.
Buy some cheap 5% white vinegar (I paid $2.10/ gallon at my local Smart and Final store).
Submerse your part and let it sit for three days (might take longer).
Take your part out of the container, it will still look rusty.
Pressure wash it well.
Nice shiny metal will appear.

IMPORTANT: after pressure washing, blow your part off with compressed air and let it sit in the sun to get it completely dry. If you skip this step, rust will form within 10 minutes, it's amazingly disappointing, I tell you.

I like to sand the part a little to get it really clean and lightly spray it with Gibbs, an oily substance that will wipe of with lacquer thinner later, when you are ready for paint.

1936 Ford hood sides before the vinegar treatment. 

The louvered hood sides have been sanded, the solid hood sides after pressure washing before sanding and Gibbs.
Ready for paint.

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