It arrived today!
Here is 1 minute in the shop as a quick test.
I think it will work out fine.
What I see is that the grey is a residue. It wirewheels off just fine
The rust has reduced the surface through MINOR pitting which leaves a fine grainy surface
The polish pass just shined up the surface, so the grainy surface is shiny (not our preferred outcome)
I would suggest that I make a gentle pass with my surfacing tools to put the metal back to smooth, then buff. They should shine right up. If that sounds too "invasive" I can just wirewheel and buff.
Hey Steve I like your suggestion above to put the metal back to smooth and buff. Thanks
After the buffing and polishing what do you suggest to use on them to keep future rust away?
I use Museum Wax (Microcrystaline wax) when needed but truth is once it is polished it is rust resistant (the reason we started polishing things in the first place)
use it, love it, wipe off fingerprints (oil and dirt), should be good.
Steve, I think that "chrome" on the older handwheels is just nickel plating. Wouldn't a wire wheel grind off that thin nickel pretty fast?
I was thinking that a series of buffing wheels with cutting/buffing compounds might be the safest way to start after the Evaporust?
The wire wheel scares me. A tad. Okay, more than a tad - it scares me a lot because it sparks, too! :D I know, I'm a chicken.
I've read some very good things about the nickel electro-plating kits you can buy for small parts, too. Have you ever tried any of those?
I will post a pic later to show but this handwheel had about 10% of the nickel plating left.
I work with coal and gas forges regularly, so not so stressed by sparks
Although I have to say in doing this process I don't get any sparks at all, I use a 6 inch diameter soft/fine wheel on a 1/2 HP motor.
You're also quite correct if this had it's nickel plating the wire Wheeling would just remove it in a heartbeat. In fact that's why I chose the wire wheel for this is because it would remove what's left of the nickel plating to even up the surface.
Then the light sanding to remove the pitting from
the original rust damage, then a series of compounds. (Actually two)
I cleaned one up a bit in a similar but amateurish manner. I used one of those sponge type sanding blocks and turned the hand wheel by the motor with the stop motion knob loosened. It actually came out fair to middlen OK.
I'm looking forward to seeing yours.
that is a good method, my only worry is particulates getting in the machine from that. I do a similar proess but use a wooden dowel in the center of the wheel and turn it against the wire-wheel.