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Thread: cleaning/removing lite rust on cast iron molds

  1. #1
    Boolit Man whitetailsniper's Avatar
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    cleaning/removing lite rust on cast iron molds

    on some of my cast iron molds ,ones that have sat for awhile i noticed today,im getting lite rust,,,WHAT DO YOU GUYS USE TO REMOVE THIS?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master



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    A mineral spirits bath and a soft brass brush.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

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    Inside or out? Inside you can use a pencil for light rust, the lead part. Outside a light brush and a penitrating fluid.
    Aim small, miss small!

  4. #4
    Boolit Man whitetailsniper's Avatar
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    Using the lead of a pencil?? Lerning new tricksall the time,how does the lead affect the lite rust??,,and when you say minerial spirits bath,,are you meaning soak the whole thing in min.spirits??

  5. #5
    Boolit Master

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    It rubs or scrapes light runst off and can get in the little corners and such. I like a carpenters pencil better for that. You also can use a pen eraser for larger areas or the outside. Yes you can soak the whole mould in the mineral sprits.
    Aim small, miss small!

  6. #6
    Boolit Master turbo1889's Avatar
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    Basically using the lead (actually graphite) of a pencil to clean light rust deposits out of the cavity of a mold is the same as using a pumice bar to clean hard water deposits on a fine porcelain sink. The pencil is harder then the rust but softer then the iron mold so that it scrapes off only the rust and doesn't scratch, gouge, or otherwise damage the good iron of the mold.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    For light surface rust I use 4 0 steel wool wrapped around a round bamboo chop stick. I also trim the chop stick to a chisel point and use that in the sharp cornors of the cavities to clean the rust out. In extreme cases, I embed fine valve grinding compound in the point of the chop stick.

    On the exterior of the mold and the sprue plate I use purple scuff pads I purchased at the Auto parts store.
    How's that hope and change working for you?

  8. #8
    Boolit Master


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    Read the entire citric acid sticky. I think that's what I'm trying next.
    Wayne the Shrink

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  9. #9
    Boolit Master

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    When you order your Kroil get a pint of EXRUST It dont eat the metal just the rust

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  11. #11
    I'm A Honcho!



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    Go to Harbor Freight and buy a $5 jug of "EVAPO-RUST". It's a grey jug with a big label and red top. It works wonders. Had a couple severely rusted moulds and now they are completely rust-free with simply an overnight soak. I then rinsed them in very hot water and put them in the oven at 220 degrees to evaporate away the water. They've now been oiled and are awaiting their turn to try out being casted with.

    These moulds looked horrible - exterior was a deep, dark brown and inside the cavities was bright orange rust. Screws were rusted shut (couldn't get to the slots) and nothing would open or turn. After the soaking, rinsing and re-oiling, they look great. The cavities are perfect, and the only sign they were rusted is the metal is discolored where the rust used to be, but the surfaces are smooth and perfect. Inside of all the cavities is bright and shiney -- look new and perfect.

    This product is safe (won't hurt environment or you) and only eats away the rust, not the metal underneath.
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  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by MakeMineA10mm View Post
    Go to Harbor Freight and buy a $5 jug of "EVAPO-RUST". It's a grey jug with a big label and red top. It works wonders. Had a couple severely rusted moulds and now they are completely rust-free with simply an overnight soak. I then rinsed them in very hot water and put them in the oven at 220 degrees to evaporate away the water. They've now been oiled and are awaiting their turn to try out being casted with.

    These moulds looked horrible - exterior was a deep, dark brown and inside the cavities was bright orange rust. Screws were rusted shut (couldn't get to the slots) and nothing would open or turn. After the soaking, rinsing and re-oiling, they look great. The cavities are perfect, and the only sign they were rusted is the metal is discolored where the rust used to be, but the surfaces are smooth and perfect. Inside of all the cavities is bright and shiney -- look new and perfect.

    This product is safe (won't hurt environment or you) and only eats away the rust, not the metal underneath.

    I have a rusted rifle action that I need to do something with. Will this evapo-rust take the bluing off, as well?

  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Answered my own question. Yes, it will.

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    If you have a Dremel Tool, try this. When I got a mold that the cavity was LIGHTLY rusted, I took a Q-tip and cropped it so as to have about 1/4" of the shaft left. Chuck it up in the dremel and use buffing or jeweler's Rouge to clean it up. Best Wishes, Bud

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by outdoorfan View Post
    I have a rusted rifle action that I need to do something with. Will this evapo-rust take the bluing off, as well?
    YES!!! Bluing is nothing more than a form of rust, and Evapo Rust WILL remove it! I had a couple blued die pieces that got some on them, and the blue cleaned up real well!!!

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by MakeMineA10mm View Post
    Go to Harbor Freight and buy a $5 jug of "EVAPO-RUST". It's a grey jug with a big label and red top. It works wonders. Had a couple severely rusted moulds and now they are completely rust-free with simply an overnight soak. I then rinsed them in very hot water and put them in the oven at 220 degrees to evaporate away the water. They've now been oiled and are awaiting their turn to try out being casted with.

    These moulds looked horrible - exterior was a deep, dark brown and inside the cavities was bright orange rust. Screws were rusted shut (couldn't get to the slots) and nothing would open or turn. After the soaking, rinsing and re-oiling, they look great. The cavities are perfect, and the only sign they were rusted is the metal is discolored where the rust used to be, but the surfaces are smooth and perfect. Inside of all the cavities is bright and shiney -- look new and perfect.

    This product is safe (won't hurt environment or you) and only eats away the rust, not the metal underneath.
    Evapo Rust is great. Cleaned up a set of RCBS Carbide dies that I was going to DX. It cleaned them up very well. Once I had soaked them, I washed them with water then sprayed them with WD40 to remove the water and wiped them down. Best part is that it didn't ruin the Carbide lining on the sizing die.

  17. #17
    I'm A Honcho!



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    Quote Originally Posted by outdoorfan View Post
    Answered my own question. Yes, it will.
    I've only used it on the Lyman mould blocks, and from that experience, I'd say the rust eats away most of the blue, and the evaporust just leaves behind whatever's left underneath... There were a couple spots on the mould that had pretty dark/black spots that were the beginning of pitting, and there's certainly none of that Lyman case-colored bluing left in those spots, but I attribute it to the rust, not the cleaner. That said, I haven't put any of it on clean (no rust) blued steel as a test. The label says it's very safe and environmentally friendly and ONLY hurts rust. Of course, bluing is called "rust-blue" for a reason too...
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by oscarflytyer View Post
    Evapo Rust is great. Cleaned up a set of RCBS Carbide dies that I was going to DX. It cleaned them up very well. Once I had soaked them, I washed them with water then sprayed them with WD40 to remove the water and wiped them down. Best part is that it didn't ruin the Carbide lining on the sizing die.
    LOL! posting simultaneously!!

    Thanks for sharing your experience; yes bluing is a form of rust. It dawned on me at the end of my previous post...
    Group Buy Honcho for: 9x135 Slippery, 45x200 Target (H&G68), 45x230 Gov't Profile, 44x265 Keith


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  19. #19
    Boolit Master

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    Don't forget the electronic method. It's a good way to get all the rust off.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    For lite surfae rust I use a tooth brush and Bar Keepers Friend. Then use a mild solution of Dawn dish washing detergent to finish the clean up. A final rinse with hot tap water and toothbrush to remove all cleaner residue.
    How's that hope and change working for you?

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