Hollows and Rounds after the bath

Tobias asked about any ill effects of using vinegar. So, here are a couple of pics of the results of an overnight bath in plain old, edible, distilled white vinegar. (straight from the grocery store, 5% acidity) Metal that was not previously rusted shows no noticeable change. Places where there was red rust are now free of the roughness, but are darker gray. There were some blotchy darker areas that are unchanged.  Heck, I’m only 1/3 the age of these plane irons and I’ve got blotches.

photo of derusted plane irons close up photo of de-rusted irons

Next: sharpening, which as I mentioned to “Boy” will be freehand using  a course India stone and two finer grades of Arkansas stones. The rounds can be sharpened on normal flat stones, the hollows on rounded edge slip stones.

4 Responses to “Hollows and Rounds after the bath”

  1. Bob Says:

    Huh…I just finished doing the same thing to my 40+ moulders over the weekend. The vinegar is an interesting idea. I hit them with Boeshield rust remover, gave’em a scrub with a scrubby, and for the really bad ones, a pass back-and-forth on fine sandpaper (just to loosen the rust, not an attempt to flatten them.) I then tried a light coating of Boeshield.

    Do you have a ‘before’ picture, to evaluate how rusty they were (or weren’t)? What are you going to do with them to keep rust at bay? I live in Va, and had tried just waxing the blades, but that was not enough.

  2. Bob Says:

    Hi Bob,
    The best “before” picture I have is in the post just before this one. It shows all the irons just after they were put in a bath. It gets pretty humid here too in the summer months (25 mi N of NYC), but I haven’t had problems with other plane irons or chisels. The only prevention I take is wipe down with a lightly oiled rag after sharpening or honing.

  3. Tobias Says:

    Hello Bob,

    Thanks for the further information. I tried the vinegar on a few odds and ends the last few days. Though I used a stronger solution (half 25% vinegar half water) the metal was not negativly affected by the acid. I`ve tried electrolysis earlier but after all vinegar does the job just fine and its a lot less complex, easier to set up and less dangerous.

    Best regards,


  4. Bob Says:

    Fabulous Tobias!
    Happy to hear it worked so well.