Yesterday I spent a day in the shop doing maintenence. I finally ground and honed the blade in my Keen Kutter KK7 jointer plane. I even filed down the frog, which I dove right into. It all could’ve went horribly wrong, but it didn’t. Everything went great and the plane works great.

I also gave my first shot at electrolysis for rust removal. I read some guides, and watched some videos on it, and decided to give it a shot. I had an old cast iron pan that had some cracks in it. This was my sacrificial anode. I picked up a large box of baking soda (here’s a tip, just get the small box). And I borrowed my dad’s old Sears battery charger.

I filled up an old round plastic tub with water, and added 1 Tbsp of baking soda per gallon. Make sure the top of your anode is above the water line, and hook up your positive lead to the part above the water. Then hook up the negative lead to the part to be derusted and submerge it next to the anode, leaving at least 2 inches of space between. Plug it in and wait a few hours.

You’ll need some Scotch Brite or a stiff nylon brush and some soap and water to clean up the black oxide left behind. I plan to pickup some Scotch Brite grinder wheels, along with some lapping/polishing wheels too. This will speed up this sort of restore considerably and yield better results.

As for the rest of the plane parts, I dunked them in a bath of EvapoRust. I had bought this to try on some saw blades, but it didn’t quite do the job I wanted it to. But for these plane parts it was perfect. Whats nice is that it gets inside the screw holes and does a thorough job.

I also threw in a pair of dividers (or maybe this is considered a caliper, I’m not sure) that Eric Mattson gave me for free at the M-WTCA Cabin Fever meet a few weeks ago. It was coated in orange rust, and you couldn’t even see a maker’s mark on it. He told me they were Starrett, but you can barely make out “Pexto”. When I picked them up to check them out, he told me “You can have it, as long as I don’t have to clean it”. Well yesterday I dunked them in with the rest of the plane parts.

Here’s a pic of the result. Didn’t know it had brass parts! Looks pretty neat, the contrast of pitted metal with shiny brass. The points are sharp, and it locks up tight, so this will definitely be put to use. Which is what a tool is meant for in the first place.

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