What's new

Rust is reappearing after many rust-removing processes

I have a razor that had a little rust and pitting, but it wasn't bad. There was however rust in the pinhole that I wasn't able to sand out, and the pinhole itself if huge and looks like it has been drilled from both sides, each hole a little off.

I've tried different methods to remove the rust in the pinhole: sandpaper on an awl, rust removing liquid, baking powder and vinegar-aluminum foil rubbing without much success. Today I did some electrolysis (with the same baking powder / baking soda) with some success, and finished it off with a soak in vinegar and baking powder followed by steel wool rubbing.

Now it doesn't look very bad, most rust is gone, and I continue to sand the razor to scratches from prevous sanding. Dry the razor with paper and dip it in alcohol.

The problem I'm having after all of this is that the razor immediately starts turning orange - especially in the shank text and pitting. What can I do to keep it rust free?
 
I recently had one like this and made tubes from tightly rolled 220 and 400 grit wet/dry sandpaper with the grit facing out to sand the pivot hole. After inserting the tubes I sprayed with WD-40. Worked well. Only needed about 0.5” of sandpaper to roll.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
I should add that the sandpaper removed 99.9% of the red oxide and then the WD-40 converted any residual red oxide to black oxide (magnetite).


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
It should not be reoccurring that quick.
Perhaps you are not eradicating it to begin with. I see all along the spine remnants or rust starting.
The spine is one of the easiest places to address. Sand it down to completely remove rust and polish back up to at least 600 - 800 w/d paper.
Black spots may remain and that's ok but there should not be any active rust left untouched.
 
Personally, I would leave out the vinegar-baking soda combination, or either used alone. Painting the blade with mineral oil and removing the oil with alcohol as needed just prior to use would seem like a good way to keep the rust at bay.
 
Last edited:
I was thinking that the electrolysis could have damaged something?
The electrolysis made the rust go away, but left tiny pits where it was. Those pits caught the moisture and swarf from your sanding, and that is what you are probably seeing rusting. This is why we sand razors rather than use electrolysis. You take the metal down to remove the damage done by the rust, and leave a smooth surface that does not trap anything.
 
The electrolysis made the rust go away, but left tiny pits where it was. Those pits caught the moisture and swarf from your sanding, and that is what you are probably seeing rusting. This is why we sand razors rather than use electrolysis. You take the metal down to remove the damage done by the rust, and leave a smooth surface that does not trap anything.
That's why I alcoholed it after, to make sure all moisture got away. But consider the lettering, one doesn't grind them away on every restore, and I've never had rust reappear like this in the lettering on any other razor I've messed with.
 
That's why I alcoholed it after, to make sure all moisture got away. But consider the lettering, one doesn't grind them away on every restore, and I've never had rust reappear like this in the lettering on any other razor I've messed with.
True, but on a microscopic level the lettering is actually quite smooth. Pitting is jagged and looks like the surface of the moon.
 
@Thetyr what's done is done. Steel, and especially razor steel, is not just iron (Fe) and cardon (C). It also contains other elements, either internationally or accidentally. Your rust removal process(es) has removed some of the alloying elements out of the surface of the steel. This is what is promoting the fast Fe oxidation (rust).

For now, forget about this surface rust. Just get out your abrasive paper and start sanding the metal to mirror smooth. Once that is done, you should be down to good steel and not have so much of a problem.
 
The trick to using electrolysis or vinegar is a short soak to loosen the rust, then scrub away the top layer of rust with a brush or steel wool, soak again if needed, but do not leave in solution for extended period or it will eat the metal.

On a rusted razor I first remove the active rust with a razorblade, then scrub with WD40 and 000 steel wool once all the active rust is gone, set the bevel on a 1k. If the bevel crumbles, it is pointless to continue with restoration.

I use vinegar to remove active rust on antique tools all the time, not on razors. I soak in hot water and degreaser then a 50% vinegar soak for 20-30 minutes and soapy water scrub.
 
@Thetyr what's done is done. Steel, and especially razor steel, is not just iron (Fe) and cardon (C). It also contains other elements, either internationally or accidentally. Your rust removal process(es) has removed some of the alloying elements out of the surface of the steel. This is what is promoting the fast Fe oxidation (rust).

For now, forget about this surface rust. Just get out your abrasive paper and start sanding the metal to mirror smooth. Once that is done, you should be down to good steel and not have so much of a problem.
Oh, I had no idea - I let it cook in my contraption for quite some time! At least I learned something for next time :thumbup:
 
The trick to using electrolysis or vinegar is a short soak to loosen the rust, then scrub away the top layer of rust with a brush or steel wool, soak again if needed, but do not leave in solution for extended period or it will eat the metal.

On a rusted razor I first remove the active rust with a razorblade, then scrub with WD40 and 000 steel wool once all the active rust is gone, set the bevel on a 1k. If the bevel crumbles, it is pointless to continue with restoration.

I use vinegar to remove active rust on antique tools all the time, not on razors. I soak in hot water and degreaser then a 50% vinegar soak for 20-30 minutes and soapy water scrub.
Thank you for the suggestions! The reason for electrolysing it was that I had problems sanding inside the wonky pin hole.
 
Top Bottom