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 In Techniques

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Carbon steel and cast iron are very susceptible to rust and, if not protected correctly against humidity and moisture, will catch a reddish layer of corrosion in no time.

The summer is here in earnest, and with it came the rising humidity. Humidity and ferrous-based metals such as carbon steel and cast iron don’t get along that well, and the result of the turbulent relationship between the two is rust. 

I try to prevent rust infestation by covering my tools and machines’ exposed surfaces with oil, wax, or a special anti-rust paper. Still, unfortunately, some pernicious rust will always find a way and sneak through my lines of defense. It is better to deal with rust sooner than later as if left unattended, rust will set camp on your tools’ surfaces and spread out broader and deeper. 

Spots of rust on my jointer’s cast iron outfeed table.

Iron oxidization or corrosion can wreak havoc on our tools and is incredibly frustrating when discovered on flat and true reference surfaces such as planers, table saws beds, and the soles and sides of our hand planes. 

Thankfully, many products can help us remove freshly settled surface rust.


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