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Removing rusty saddles

Posted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 11:07 am
by mcjt
So i won an auction for a mid 60's JM bridge with 3 original saddles.
i get it a little late, no biggie- but then i had a close look.... i was missing the two set screws in the base.
Crap!! i wanted to USE this bridge, not put it in a box and forget about it...
i wrote the seller and told him there was a problem with the bridge and that it was incomplete.
of course, NO ANSWER.
with the help of my techs, we were able to figure out what set screw it was (440- half inch) and i was able to buy a new pair for $2! :)
To hell with the seller who couldn'T even be bothered to answer....

So last week i decided to spray it down with a high quality lubricant and get the screws out of the saddles, clean the gunk off the parts... and---
the saddles are RUSTED under the gunk. they won't move at all! after a week of soaking in lube.

Anyone have ideas? how can i free up these saddles and screws? CLR?

Re: Removing rusty saddles

Posted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 11:44 am
by ohm-men
I always heard about the old "Coca Cola" trick when it comes to rust and gunk. Not the "light" or "Zero" but the real stuff.
Although not sure I want to plunge a 60ties saddle in it. just a thought....
Although I'm sure there are some othter options as well. Vinegar for example is used by old coin collectors to clean old coins. Just the non colored variant.
Since it's a little acid, it known to remove rust. Perhaps ues a small steel brush to "rub" the rust before using the vinegar, so it can penetrate the rust a bit better.

Re: Removing rusty saddles

Posted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 12:55 pm
by the older brother
+1 on what ohm-men said.

Also know that some jewellers use a (ultra/infra? can't remember wich) vibration machine to vibrate the dirt off the silver/gold/nickel/whatever the chains/rings/bracelets are made of - I've tried one - with a very old and dirty silver chain - and it cleaned up every single hidden spot on it. Could be worth a try

BTW I've just recently broken off a non original screw in a 62 bridge saddle and I'm about to gently drill the remaining piece out and re-do the threads in it with a tap screw - scary....

Re: Removing rusty saddles

Posted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 1:21 pm
by k o y l
Coke works like a dream. I used the trick to unrust the bridge of my Aria diamond and it pretty much did the work all by itself.

After a 3 days Coke bath, I brushed it with toothpaste and spray some WD40 on it.

Re: Removing rusty saddles

Posted: Sun Mar 30, 2008 1:22 pm
by mcjt
i might buy a can of coke- apparently the citric acid will etch the rust. i don't drink the stuff- so this will be funny!
or there's naval jelly that is a proper rust remover- i can get it for $5 at True Value hardware!