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Removing rust with molasses solution.


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  #1  
Old 08-05-2011, 12:51 AM
tgegan tgegan is offline
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Default Removing rust with molasses solution.

After reading about several techniques for removing rust I was intrigued by the stories about using a molasses solution. It seemed like a good option – no caustic chemicals and a safe by-product but a bit unconventional.

I decided to give it a try. I mixed one part feed-grade molasses to nine parts water in a plastic tub and submerged a rusty sheet metal sieve half way. I let it soak overnight and the next day pulled it out and rinsed it off. I was surprised just how well it worked.

Check out the attached photos, this is the result of the solution only – no wire brushing, just a rinse. I’ll do another experiment with a piece of cast iron to see how long it might take. Interesting what you learn on these forums.
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Old 08-05-2011, 04:08 AM
jopeter jopeter is offline
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Default Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

That sort of result overnight is very good ,never been that quick for me . I had a friend In Missouri ,I passed it on to him but he never had much luck with it . I use the method often .
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Old 08-05-2011, 04:47 AM
clappo clappo is offline
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Default Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

Hi Tgegan,i have found that molasses cleans rust well but you should not leave cast iron in for long as it softens the cast iron and will ruin the engine cylinder and you will have to have it machined and re sleeved now i only use soda ash with a battery charger doe's a far better job in half the time with with no side affects don't use a stainless steel probe only lead you will be amazed with the results.cheers clappo.
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Old 08-05-2011, 07:11 AM
Tom Martin Tom Martin is offline
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Default Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

I have never tried the molasses solution, but have used electrolysis a good bit. One advantage I see with the molasses is that rust is removed from all surfaces, instead of only those in direct line with the anode. It would make the removal of rust inside of things like hoppers much easier.
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Old 08-05-2011, 12:11 PM
Andrew Mackey Andrew Mackey is offline
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Exclamation Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

The sugar in the molasses does the trick. It will degrade cast iron, if left on it long term. I have done work in a candy manufacturing plant, and its waste system is built of extra heavy cast iron. This waste system has to be replaced about every 5 years, as the waste sugars eat up the 1/2" thick iron to the point where there are holes in it

By the way, I believe that feed grade molasses is a thicker byproduct of sugar extraction - it is not like Grandma's you buy in the store!

Andrew
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Old 08-05-2011, 07:57 PM
Merv C Merv C is offline
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Default Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

What happens is there is a fermenting process and the sugars in molasses turns into acid, I am not sure one but I think it may be lactic acid. You get the same result with any sugary solution. Years ago some of the guys here in New Zealand used to use whey, a byproduct of the dairy industry, to clean up rust and free up parts. It was effective but it did take a while. I don't know if anyone uses it now as a lot of the guys now use electrolysis because it is much faster.

Merv.
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Old 08-06-2011, 09:39 PM
W.P.Klein W.P.Klein is offline
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Default Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

Good results can also be had with 3 cups of salt disolved per gallon of vinegar. Bill Klein
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:10 PM
tgegan tgegan is offline
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Default Re: Removing rust with molasses solution.

Its pretty hot here in Phoenix this week (110) so the solution is has been 'solar' heated, I think that helps the process along.
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