In my experience WD40 is the best solution, give your tools a
spray with this, It should keep the rust at bay. You can also get
moisture absorbing silica granules, they are very effective. Another
possibility is the Sulphuric acid solution. I am sure John Burgess
can explain this in detail.
You rang, milord? G’day; I agree with Richard Whitehouse that WD40
is useful as an anti rusting film on steel. I have already had my say
on silica gel: excellent if fresh and in a fully closed environment -
which a drawer or cupboard isn’t.
Sulphuric acid? NO NO NO! Concentrated sulphuric acid is a very
powerful remover of water indeed which is why it gets so hot upon
dilution. So powerful in fact that it will quickly remove water from
any organic substance holding it. Such as flesh! Pour pure sulphuric
acid into a solution of sugar and it will quickly start to hiss and
boil; clouds of steam will generate and the entire vessel will
suddenly become overfilled with black porous carbon because the acid
has removed the hydrogen/oxygen molecules from the sugar.
I try to keep off chemical formulae and jargon but this is an
occasion where the results become obvious; Sugar may be written as
C12 H22 O11 Which simply means that in sugar, for every 12 atoms of
carbon it has 11 molecules of water - H20 and that is why the stuff
gets very hot and leaves you with a mass of carbon. So, flesh isn’t
sugar? No, but it has many similarities and sulphuric acid goes for
the water combined in the molecules making up flesh. You don’t want to
know about the resultant burns.
OK, so scientists use pure sulphuric acid as a drying agent for
drying chemicals. But they use it in vessels designed for the job,
and furthermore are trained to know it’s properties and how to handle
it. Diluted acid will not have a drying action.
My advice to anyone untrained in the handling of hazardous chemicals,
is DON’T!! If you do need dilute sulphuric acid, buy it as such from
a pharmacist or from a garage as battery acid. Keep well away from the
I do use 10% of sulphuric acid as a jewellery pickle, and even dilute
my own. BUT! I have had a lifetime of working in laboratories. –
John Burgess; @John_Burgess2 of Mapua Nelson NZ