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Keeping shot from rusting


#1

The last time there was a discussion of steel shot someone
mentioned that he kept his (carbon steel, I think) shot in a
solution that was homemade that kept it from rusting — was it
ammonia and water? Anyone do it that way or remember?


#2

I’m pretty sure someone said to use antifreeze. I guess the
alchohol in it absorbs the water. Michael


#3

Hi:

I use a mixture of dishwasher soap and water to store it in.
Electrasol is the best, but use the powdered stuff, not the gel.
The gel gets all gummy.

Laura


#4

G’day; Steel ‘shot’ must always be kept completely dry or it
will surely rust, so warm it before you put it back in an
air-tight container. When you buy scalpel blades they are
wrapped in an aluminium foil and inside that is a brown paper.
That paper is impregnated with rust inhibiting agent, so put a
few pieces of that in your ‘shot’ container. I use quite a few
home-made and brightly polished punches, and you’d find the
inhibitor paper in the jar which has held them for around ten
years - with no rust. Cheers,

        /\
       / /    John Burgess, 
      / /
     / //\    @John_Burgess2
    / / \ \
   / (___) \
  (_________)

#5
   The last time there was a discussion of steel shot someone 
  mentioned that he kept his (carbon steel, I think) shot in a
   solution that was homemade that kept it from rusting ---
was it    ammonia and water? 

I used a small (about 8" dia X 3 1/2" deep) vibratory tumbler
with 7 # of carbon steel shot. Starting with a clean bowl & shot,
I add a pinch of burnishing soap (powdered dishwaser soap will
work) & about 1 oz (shot glass) of household ammonia. When I’m
done using the unit I put the cover on tightly & leave it. It’s
been left in that condition for a month with no rust formation.
The next time I use it, if I can’t smell the ammonia when it’s
opened, I add another oz of ammonia. I never add water. The shot
is over 6 yrs old & shows no sign of rust.

Dave


#6

I remember seeing someone mention that they keep theirs in
Anti-freeze (purchased at the local auto parts store . . .)


#7

I’m pretty sure someone said to use antifreeze. I guess the
alchohol in it absorbs the water. Michael

Great… do you rinse off before reusing the shot? Sol K.


#8
The last time there was a discussion of steel shot someone
mentioned that he kept his (carbon steel, I think) shot in a
solution that was homemade that kept it from rusting --- was it
ammonia and water?  Anyone do it that way or remember?

Hello Jess-

Where is J.A. or Skip when you need them? Try to keep your shot
in anti-freeze after rinsing it off. It will not rust this way.
We keep our shot by the tumblers in a 1 gal bucket with just
enough anti-freeze to cover the shot. They also sell this type
of thing at the suppliers, if youre inclined that way.HTH Regards,
Ricky Low


#9

use Borex soap at your local hardware store works for months.


#10

I’m pretty sure someone said to use antifreeze. I guess the
alchohol in it absorbs the water. Michael

1st, I don’t think there’s alcohol in etyhlene glycol or
propolene glycol antifreeze. The old alcohol antifreeze went out
years ago. The antifreeze has rust inbitors & other additives in
it. Just the fact that it doesn’t have much absorbed oxy in it &
keeps the air & moisture away from the sho t is all that is
needed to prevent rust.

Great… do you rinse off before reusing the shot? Sol K.<<

Probably depends on how much there is. If there’s a pound of
shot to a gallon of antifreeze, you probably need to clean it. If
thre’s just a thin coating of antifreeze on the shot, you may not
have to clean it. Try it on a small scrap item & let us know.
It’d sure be nice if it didn’t have to be cleaned. I’d be careful
about what stones were put in antifreeze coated shot. Some

of the porous ones may be affected.

Dave


#11
 Great..... do you rinse off before reusing the shot?

I don’t remember if anyone mentioned that . . . but, I think
that rinsing before reusing would be a very good idea!


#12

If you do use antifreeze to keep your steel shot from rusting
keep it under lock and key. Pets will try to drink the stuff if
they can get to it. Keep it away from where kids could get to it
also it has a sweet taste to it that will attract them. It will
destroy the kidneys and liver functions if taken internally. I
lost a cat that drank some that dripped from the car. Ed Ward


#13
If you do use antifreeze to keep your steel shot from rusting
keep it under lock and key. Pets will try to drink the stuff
if they can get to it. Keep it away from where kids could get
to it also it has a sweet taste to it that will attract them.
It will destroy the kidneys and liver functions if taken
internally. I lost a cat that drank some that dripped from the
car. Ed Ward

I am glad you mentioned this as it can be such a hazard. I did
recently see an advertisement by one of the major brands. For
the first time it seemed they were talking about a new antifreeze
that had a lower toxicity and was maybe less attractive taste
wise. I hope this new product will help. Everyone should be aware
of the danger and be very carefull. Sorry about your kitty, Ed. I
know my dogs would eat just about anything if they could get to
it. Thank you for pointing out this safety tip.-Carrie Nunes
@tnunes


#14

I think the only thing that is being gained in using antifreeze
of any type to prevent rust is the rust inhibiting additives not
the glycol to any significant degree. Generally iron will rust in
acid to neutral conditions, under alkaline conditions iron tends
not to rust. All the materials mentioned make the water alkaline
which acts as a rust inhibitor as the additives in antifreeze.

These materials produce alkaline solutions in water:

dishwasher soap (sodium carbonate)
ammonia
Borax
trisodium phosphate

Mike McKim


#15
   Hi all The best method to keep shot from rusting is to: 1 
remove shot from bowl and place on a bath towel 2  using
standard hair dyer ...  blow until dry ... 3 to 5 min 3 place
in  container and store 

I never worried too much about traces of rust. Steel shot
conditioners clean it up quickly enough on those occasions where
the shot sits a little too long. Kept in a closed container with
the burnishing soaps or better, storage solutions, you can
prevent most rusting for the normally fairly short periods, like
a week or less, between runs in the tumbler. While clean shot
is needed, of course, it’s not, in my opinion, worth going to
fanatic time consuming means to maintain, when it’s pretty quick
and easy to clean up again if needed. But, that said, I’d also
offer a suggestion, based on memories of the first store I worked
at, way back when, where the watchmaker required cases to be
polished (by me) while he worked on the movements. He needed
those things perfectly clean and dry to reinstall the movements.
No errors allowed. What we did then was to have a large
stainless steel strainer (grocery store stuff) which rested
nicely into the end of a large size coffee can. that can was
mounted to a board, with about an inch of air space underneath,
and both ends cut out. Also mounted to the board was a ceramic
light socket, with a 150 watt bulb. The strainer would sit in
the can just above the light bulb. A second can (any suitible
container would work) held denatured alcohol. After polishing
and cleaning in the ultrasonic and rinsing, a quick dip in the
alcohol removed most of the water, and the strainer was then just
set over that bulb for a few minutes. The cases would be very,
very dry after only a few minutes of that gentle heating. This
same sort of getup could easily be used to dry steel shot, if
your amount will fit a strainer you can rig up. You’d remove
the shot from the tumbler, rinse out the soap and grunge till the
water ran clear, dip in the alcohol, let it drip dry a moment (no
sense wasting alcohol), and then let it toast over the bulb. You
could be doing something else while it dried, unlike a hair
dryer, and you don’t then end up with a bunch of wet towels.
'Bout the only precaution you’d need is to be sure you had
sufficient ventilatio to handle the fumes from the alcohol. Fire
isn’t much of a danger if you’re reasonably careful what other
things you do in the area, since the bulb isn’t hot enough to
set the fumes on fire. The shot only needs to get lightly warmed
to be very dry.

Another idea which occurs to me to store it is WD-40. You can
buy gallon containers for a lot less than the little spray
bottle. rinse the shot as above, and then just dump in the oil.
It will displace any water, preventing rust completely, even if
something in the storage environment, like humidity, might be a
rusting agent (which could be the case if simply drying the
shot). The downside, of course, is that you then have to wash off
the oil before actually using the shot again…

Hope this helps.

Peter Rowe


#16

Hello Orchid- When this matter came up some time back, I
suggested to someone that I kept my shot in anti-freeze to keep
it from rusting and it caused a flurry of responses, both for and
against. It certainly caused an uproar, that’s for sure. Let me
clarify a few things about this. #1- I’m very sorry to hear about
the gentleman’s unfortunate cat and his experience with
anti-freeze. The poor thirsty critter was just doing what some
human taught it to do and that is consume what a human being had
left out for it. It’s what pets do, and they are no different
than babies and know no better. It was just doing what cats do.
You have to be responsible for pets just as you do for your
children or these things will happen. It is certainly not the
inanimate anti-freeze’s fault. I’m not a chemical engineer and
have no connection with any anti-freeze producer, but I think
that the toxic substance in anti-freeze is actually methanol,
which is colorless, tasteless(they say), and odorless(they also
say) in addition to being extremely toxic. It causes blindness,
liver and kidney failure, coma and death rather quickly. But
then, there are several substances looking down at me from the
shelf that are just as toxic that we use haphazardly every
single day in this business, such as cyanide, plating salts,
acids, etc. You have to be responsible and use and store these
things in a responsible manner. Same with anti-freeze. And let me
further state that I personally am not suggesting that anyone
use anti-freeze for anything or any other toxic substance for
that matter, especially if they are not going to use it
responsibly and in a safe manner. #2-I have tried carbon shot,
stainless shot, ceramic, everything. At one time I would spread
my shot out in my burnout oven and put it on a low setting to
boil the moisture off of it. It worked okay, but you still have
to keep this dried shot in a sealed container as it will pick up
moisture from the atmosphere and rust.And yes, virginia,
stainless steel will rust. Some types more so than others. All
it takes is a starting point for the rust to start and off it
goes. You can impart steel filings in stainless by cross
contaminating, that is by filing stainless after you used this
file on steel or some other rust susceptible metal. Watch how
fast stainless will rust after a starting point like this! And it
only takes a minute amount of metal. Even the slag and spatter
from welding stainless will cause it to rust. #3- I tried just
keeping my shot in the tumbler in the solution after taking the
finished pieces out- you know, the lazy man"s way! Bad
move-don’t try it. A one way ticket to Rust City. It may take
awhile to rust like the drying method, but it eventually will
rust. It is harder to tell as the rust wants to go into solution
and settle at the bottom where it is not as likely to be seen.
Nefarious stuff this rust. I finally came to realize what an old
jewelry hand had told me was a good suggestion and required the
least amount of effort for the results realized and keep the shot
in that evil, toxic substance. But- I’m not suggesting that you
do so.:^) Regards- Ricky Low


#17
  #1- I'm very sorry to hear about the gentleman's unfortunate
cat and his experience with anti-freeze. The poor thirsty
critter was just doing what some human taught it to do and that
is consume what a human being had left out for it. It's what
pets do, and they are no different than     babies and know no
better. It was just doing what cats do. 

A nice thought, but not a strong enough statement to be
completely accurate. It’s not just “training” or “habit”. Wild
(feral) cats will also drink antifreeze. Cats will lick the
stuff off of the engine block if it’s spilled, or off the
concrete as well. The stuff apparently strongly attracts them,
and they REALLY like the taste, to their tragic misfortune. In
short, this stuff is quite dangerous to cats. You simply cannot
allow it to spill or be left anywhere within their reach. Even
small amounts can be very toxic to them and the death it causes
is an agonizing one. Treat this chemical appropriately.

Peter Rowe


#18

Thanks Peter! The spill that got the cat was accidental and we
were not even aware of a problem until it went into convulsions
and the vet told us it was glycol poisoning. Ed Ward