Argh! Emergency de-rusting of pattern welded blade

I just finished a scabbard for a very nice pattern welded sword made by Dr. Jim Hrisoulas aka "Atar". It appears that there was just a tech of
moisture in the leather when I put the sword in it last night.
This is a scan of the worst of it:
http://h00050207be9f.ne.client2.attbi.com/metal/RustSpots.jpg (119k)
The grey spots in the scan are slightly browner in real life.
Tips/hints on proper removal?
I'm s'posed to deliver it tomorrow (Wednesday). 8-o
-- Carl West snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net http://carl.west.home.comcast.net
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"Clutter"? This is an object-rich environment.
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You are so screwed!....sorry...
Are the stains oxidation or from the leather? Maybe a cleaner like 409 for stain or muratic or HCl for rust. in a pinch try "Lime Away", it's oxacylic acid. Maybe a little Kroil or WD-40? Can you ruin the rest of it to match evenly?
http://carl.west.home.comcast.net

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Tom Gardner wrote:

In the scan it looks pitted. not so in reality. I just want to darken the rust and rub out what I can.
Hmmm... I seem to recall something about boiling rusted items in plain water to turn the oxides black. Ring a bell anyone?

I'm considering a quick re-etch with tomato ketchup. It has worked well on my own work, gave good color, it's cheap, it pretty much stays in place, fairly safe. (just don't get it on your food)
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Try Flitz. It is a rubbing compund for polishing, but works very well on things like guns and knives. It works well on guns because it will remove surface rust without damaging the bluing.
Most gun stores sell it as well as most hardware stores. It comes in a little toothpaste type tube.
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When you do blueing, you have to add sodium hydroxide until the boiling point is about 280 degrees in order to get black oxide. Below that temp. you get red oxide. So I don't think plain water will work. If you want to try that do it with something else first.
Dan

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When you rust blue, you coat the polished metal with an acid solution that creates a thin film of red rust(ferrous oxide) Then you boil the metal in distilled water for a few minutes. The ferrous oxide converts to ferro-ferric oxide which is black. The rust is removed with fine soft wire brushes and the process is repeated until the metal reaches the desired color, usually about 3-5 rusting cycles.
Randy
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- I'd sandpaper it, but I don't know anything about the finish...
OT: how do you get the weld to show up like that? My experience with forge welding has been clean joints...
Tim
-- "I've got more trophies than Wayne Gretsky and the Pope combined!" - Homer Simpson Website @ http://webpages.charter.net/dawill/tmoranwms
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Tim Williams wrote:

Usually it's a chemical etch after heat treatment, strong acids bite really quickly. They eat away the soft parts and leave the hard parts as a raised fingerprint. Atar has been known to use pure nickle in his billets too, which polishes up really white. For the surface rust, think about chemical de-oxidizers, like Naval Jelly, or some of the 'miracle jewelry cleaners' that involve a dissolved power and a 'special metal plate' on the bottom of the pan. Obviously, any kind of abrasive will destroy the finish, so forget them.
Charly
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Tim Williams wrote:

The joints are clean, but they are between meteoric iron and I-don't-know-what. Whatever etchant he used affects the metals differently, both for depth of etch and coloring.
I once did a 65-layer piece with wrought iron and truck spring, I used Ketchup as the etchant. Almost no depth to the etch, but great color difference between the metals.
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wrote:

Sorry for the late reply and this may have already been mentioned, I just arrived here and may not have all the headers, anyways... For damascus I use a mixture of 1 part ferric chloride (availiable from Radio Shack for $3.99) and 3 parts water. I do 3 etchings, 15 minutes each, rinsing the debris from the steel with clean water each time. I hope this was on-topic, I missed the original post
BTW is there a FAQ for this group?
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I've never done it but read about it enough times I can tell you got it right. (even tho I couldn't have postred it;) I used to be on the "knife-list" with Bob Engnath, DrH and Howard Clark.

FAQ's are to keep certain things from being repeated so much... no fear of that here! ;)
Alvin in AZ (hobby stock removal knife knut)
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Forger wrote:

I've used battery acid, hydrochloric acid, and strong sulphuric acid, but I never trusted it. I've gotten more reliable results from a precise heat treatment routine. This does require a digital oven with a hold range of less than five degrees, but the result is more controlable than etches. Besides, I don't think that you can ever get ALL the etchant out of the steel once you expose it, and that's the engraved invitation to corrosion down the road. I get color shift and three-dimensionality, so why dip all this hard work in something that will dissolve flesh and bone, even if for only a few seconds?
Charly
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How long? :)

That's for sure. :)

Is that a pun? :/

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snipped-for-privacy@XX.com wrote:

It varies with the alloys. The idea is to sweat a little of the carbon out of the high carbon parts that are exposed to deflate the surface a few thousandths to give the 'feel', then polish the high parts which are already decarboned to reveal the pattern. This works quite well with cable, as well as hi-lo carbon steel laminar. It's not as effective with chrome or nickel alloys, as it's the carbon we're working on.

Not intentionally, the mind plays tricks on you at 0 dark thirty before the first pot of coffee soaks in.
Charly
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I never

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So I've go no experience with this but should'nt a neutralizer take care of any residual etchant?
GA
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Greyangel wrote:

Most, but not ALL. When you etch with an acid, you wash with an alkaline. The problem is that most alkalines are cut with water to bring the concentration down and that pesky surface tension interferes with getting down into the intergranular spaces. This leaves traces of the acid buried down in the tiny spaces of the metal, waiting for moisture to reactivate it. Remember the Souix City DC-10 crash? That was brought down by a sandgrain sized crystaline discontinuity in the fan wheel of the center engine. It doesn't take very much at all to start corrosion, and it grows in the dark till one day..... crack. This is especially bad in steel, as the oxide takes up more space than the metal and you get intergranular wedging that literally pushes the grains apart. In pattern welds, this can cause delamination and structural failure. I can do without that, I sweat too hard for this stuff as it is.
Charly
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Cool. I've noticed that there are a lot of folks out there using etch to pattern or bring out the pattern on their blades. I seen etching done on (homgenous?) non forge welded steels and forge welded alike as an extrememly common practice. Can you still get the color gradients without etching on the forge welded materials?
GA
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Greyangel wrote:

Unless you're using some 'exotic' like nickel or chrome, the color shift is the difference in carbon content. Low carbon will be lighter, high carbon darker. This is especially evident in cable, as the 'surface' of the wire strands decarbons during welding, leaving a high carbon core. When you cut into this during machining, you expose the cores of the strands, and the color shift..
Lots of folks use acids because they're cheaper and quicker than precision heat treatment. Time is money. But after a few years in the aviation field, you get a healthy respect for the effects of corrosion in metals, and you want some other way to achieve the effect. The procedure I use took months of experiment to get down pat, and a lot of scrap metal was produced on the way. Mask etching is another matter entirely, and is strictly decorative. I notice that most mask etches are done on homogenous stock.
Charly
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On Sun, 17 Oct 2004 13:37:25 GMT, Charly the Bastard

Battery acid, hydrocloric, aqua regia, and lots of others that I HAVE tried will eat your flesh bones and cloths... not ferric chloride, I dont even use gloves when I handle it and I still have about 70% of my flesh remaining. Seriously its safe to handle. Doing it the way I described allows you to etch as little or as deep as you wish, just rinse and neuralize (I use baking soda to clean between etches and a liquid neutralizer when done) Try it on a piece of scrap and you will see how simple and safe it is to etch to just a color change or to whatever depth ya want.
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Forger wrote:

First of all, Ferric Chloride is not a safe baby play chemical. It is a solution of HCL (read that as Hydrochloric or Pool Acid...) and HCL that has been forced (yea right) to react with iron. What it does is the FeCl reacts to copper since copper is a lower 'oxidation' state metal it is replaced by the iron (Fe). The Fe on a pcb isn't glued to the glass board. It falls off into the tank. The copper is attached to the Chlorine CuCl (in rough terms) and goes out of action (unless Al is introduced). Along with all of this is FeCL and HCL. So with steel one is etching with the HCL floating in the Ferric Chloride. That is why it isn't so strong - more FeCl by plan.
I'd use rubber or chem gloves myself. It does etch the skin. It stains a rust yellow brown on the skin until the next new growth. In the 30's the finger prints were burnt off the hands with either HCL or (less used) Nitric.
The FeCl is a moderator of sorts. The solution can be fortified with HCL or pool acid remembering to add acid to the mixture. Warning: The mistake of so many is to add water to acid which creates a steam bubble that explodes acid over the user/adder of water.
I own a lab coat that is splashed orange when a pyrex tray split during heating. Un-even heat.
Martin
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