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The Shed - - Letters -

How to get good rust!

I en­joyed the Corten fire build in Is­sue No. 76 and noted that Jude Wood­side was hop­ing for a uni­form rust cov­er­ing on the fire. I have been us­ing cit­ric acid gran­ules for this, which I buy from the Bin Inn shop, for around $10 per kilo­gram. All my new steel ar­rives with mill scale on it and this is not some­thing you would weld to so I soak it in a so­lu­tion of cit­ric acid in an old plas­tic drum, which I cut in half length­wise, or for small pieces just use a plas­tic bucket. The likes of 25x3mm or 6mm round I leave in overnight and wash off with wa­ter and a poly pad. The metal comes up a sil­ver colour and will not rust up when build­ing your project or when kept in­side. Leave it out­side and an even coat­ing of rust will ar­rive.

The cit­ric acid is great for any steel ob­jects, but not good on cast iron.

Keith Beale, Gore, avid Shed reader

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