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Thread: Long - term tool storage ?

  1. #1
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    Default Long - term tool storage ?

    I am looking for some input on methods used to protect tools (wrench sets / socket sets and the like) when stored in the original blowmolded cases. My 'workshop' is in an attached two-car garage in South Carolina, 'heated' by the waste heat from a 50-gallon water heater. The tools in question are stored in repurposed kitchen cabinets under the workbench top. I have not even opened some of the wrench set cases in 4+ years due to working away from the house. What products would you folks use to prevent rust / corrosion on these tools ?





    Rick
    Charter Member - - Professional Procrastinators Association of America - - putting things off since 1965 " I'll get around to it tomorrow, .... maybe "

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    If you're worried about condensation you can always drill a bunch of little holes in the plastic cases.
    Spray 'em with WD40.
    You can buy rags impregnated with rust inhibitor and cut to fit.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    I'd spay it with Boeshield. It is meant to coat and protect metal: https://boeshield.com/

    Also consider putting Zerust Capsules in each cabinet: https://www.amazon.com/Zerust-11327-...66958843&psc=1

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Ideal is an airtight wooden container. Which is how old school carpenters kept their tools in a chest. The wood absorbs moisture if the humidity rises transiently.

    I made a Paul Sellers 'Rag in a can' for nothing (it's a rolled up rag in a bean can) and it's transformative for wiping tools, cast iron beds, planes, saws etc. It cleans off and lubes them. I use a pure mineral oil. Don't use any plant or organic oil as it will oxidise to a mess.

    I also read that Camphor tablets give off a gas that inhibits corrosion inside a box, so I've a couple of tabs opened in the tool trays. A tab lasts about 6 months.

    All in all seems to have stopped rust which in damp Britain is quite an accomplishment. Though I do try to get in their and ventilate the building and drawers etc.

    If you can take your best tools and store them in the house. I do that a bit in case of garage theft anyway. For really long periods and winters, some people smear tools in grease but then you then gotta get it off. Having no horizontal surfaces helps too so any condensation drips off. Saws vertical so they don't get a bend. Plane blades oiled especially down at the cutting end where moisture accumulates (causes the pitting on the old planes I've got). Pressure off the bandsaw blade and wheel rubber.
    I think when I had a garage full of dry wood (before it turned into a boat) it was drier in their too as it was also absorbing the moisture. Its a bit damper since a clear out.

    Specifically for your wrenches, a wipe with a mineral oil with a rag in a can all over and store in their boxes and they'll be right when you reopen them. Some people use Camelia oil but I tried some and found it doesn't last as long and oxidised to a goop. I wonder how much oils get substituted or cut without knowing though.
    Last edited by Edward Pearson; 12-20-2021 at 09:27 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    long term i use an aeresol lanolin

    medium term i use "corrosion block"

    short term PB catalyst blaster

    I use that lanolin goo on the backside of my tenor pan (steel drum) that lives aboard. It is chromed mild steel, not stainless, thus, it WANTS to get rusty.The back side is not so pretty.
    Last edited by wizbang 13; 12-20-2021 at 08:32 PM.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Thanks, all ! - Just the ideas / input I was looking for . . .
    Charter Member - - Professional Procrastinators Association of America - - putting things off since 1965 " I'll get around to it tomorrow, .... maybe "

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    This is the pure mineral oil I use. So far so good. It's a ladies cosmetics thing it seems, so I figured good on your hands plus less likely to have been messed with. The 100% parrafinum liquidum is the thing for smearing over tools and cast iron beds too and is what's in most tool oils. 8/ litre on Amazon UK.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/White-Miner..._t2_B006Y6Y3DE

    Camphor tablets (weird I know but apparently it works..) were these

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/ABN-Finest-...n%2C166&sr=1-4

    Ze Germans loving nothing but the smell of Balistol on a tool in winter. It's literally the tool aftershave of German Imperialism.

    https://ballistol.com/uses/
    Last edited by Edward Pearson; 12-20-2021 at 12:34 PM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor

    (There are many vendors of this. Stay away from automotive oils as they are designed to absorb moisture from the atmosphere and evaporate it when in use)
    See:
    https://transhield-usa.com/wp-conten...016/08/VCI.pdf

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Pearson View Post
    .......All in all seems to have stopped rust which in damp Britain is quite an accomplishment. Though I do try to get in their and ventilate the building and drawers etc......
    I've a properly built and insulated workshop on the Essex/ Suffolk border, and I have never had to take any measures whatever to avoid rust.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike-in-Suffolk View Post
    I've a properly built and insulated workshop on the Essex/ Suffolk border, and I have never had to take any measures whatever to avoid rust.
    I've properly applied 5 oil and camphor tabs in my uninsulated South Coast garage so I've never had to take any measures whatever to build a fully insulated properly built workshop to avoid rust.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    All good stuff - please keep those responses coming ! Thanks

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Pearson View Post
    This is the pure mineral oil I use. So far so good. It's a ladies cosmetics thing it seems, so I figured good on your hands plus less likely to have been messed with. The 100% parrafinum liquidum is the thing for smearing over tools and cast iron beds too and is what's in most tool oils. 8/ litre on Amazon UK.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/White-Miner..._t2_B006Y6Y3DE

    Camphor tablets (weird I know but apparently it works..) were these

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/ABN-Finest-...n%2C166&sr=1-4

    Ze Germans loving nothing but the smell of Balistol on a tool in winter. It's literally the tool aftershave of German Imperialism.

    https://ballistol.com/uses/
    Thank you for this, I may have to re think my drink. cheers.
    b

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Boeshield T-9

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Pearson View Post
    I've properly applied 5 oil and camphor tabs in my uninsulated South Coast garage so I've never had to take any measures whatever to build a fully insulated properly built workshop to avoid rust.

    Touche!! (I can't do accents). As it happens, I had to build the workshop because there was nothing here when we bought it.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    My workshop is part of a breeze block built garage, the workshop section is now insulated as will the rest be eventually..
    Still need to use WD 40 or the like, But we are between the Norfolk Broads and the North Sea, in the winter the water table in the well, is only a couple of feet below the land level.. Tis very Hoomid hare..
    Just an amateur bodging away..

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?



    Nice job Mike. It sits really well in its location too. I'm hoping to enlarge my garage once the boats out the door, insulation, better wiring - a ring main and 16A socket so I can run a 3hp motor in the saw, LED panel lights, a Nicholson bench...so it goes to try and make it easier to work in there.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Thanks Edward. Do the LED panel lights now. You'll be amazed at the difference they make.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Indian Land, SC
    Weather averages
    Overview

    Graphs



    MonthHigh / Low(F)Rain

    September83 / 635 days



    October73 / 515 days



    November64 / 426 days



    December55 / 357 days






    According to the chart you've got a 48' swing in average temperatures, that's not too bad. After insulating my unfinished two-car garage and turning it into a shop I found it didn't take much heat to keep condensation more or less at bay here in the PNW. My little 110v oil-filled radiator keeps the place in the 55-60 range all winter but maybe more importantly smooths out the temperature spikes that cause condensation to form.

    What about concentrating some of that "waste heat" from the water heater by building a cabinet around it big enough to house your tools? Play around with some high/low venting to create a nice warm dry spot for them to live in.
    Steve

    If you would have a good boat, be a good guy when you build her - honest, careful, patient, strong.
    H.A. Calahan

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Pearson View Post
    I've properly applied 5 oil and camphor tabs in my uninsulated South Coast garage so I've never had to take any measures whatever to build a fully insulated properly built workshop to avoid rust.

    I live 100 yards from a river and anything not stored carefully goes rusty very fast.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    I wipe the grease and schmoo off my mechanic tools with a greasy rag,after I use them.
    I also wipe my non greasy tools with the same rag.
    The Unisaw that I haven't used for several years is covered with an old bed sheet that I used to mop up a diesel spill.
    Our climate is quite humid/cool/ damp, even in winter,due to the big lake that's RIGHT THERE.
    So far, so good.
    R
    Sleep with one eye open.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Long - term tool storage ?

    Quote Originally Posted by stromborg View Post
    Indian Land, SC
    Weather averages
    Overview

    Graphs



    MonthHigh / Low(F)Rain

    September83 / 635 days



    October73 / 515 days



    November64 / 426 days



    December55 / 357 days






    According to the chart you've got a 48' swing in average temperatures, that's not too bad. After insulating my unfinished two-car garage and turning it into a shop I found it didn't take much heat to keep condensation more or less at bay here in the PNW. My little 110v oil-filled radiator keeps the place in the 55-60 range all winter but maybe more importantly smooths out the temperature spikes that cause condensation to form.

    What about concentrating some of that "waste heat" from the water heater by building a cabinet around it big enough to house your tools? Play around with some high/low venting to create a nice warm dry spot for them to live in.
    I
    Steve, thanks for this - I have insulated the 16' garage door, insulated above the garage ceiling to R38 (and R76 in some areas - piled up spare batts), as I caught a super deal on clearance insulation ($10 / bundle as I recall) I also have a free-standing AC / heat / fan unit ducted to the exterior. I will implement your suggestion -



    Rick
    Last edited by hawkeye54; 12-21-2021 at 10:50 PM.
    Charter Member - - Professional Procrastinators Association of America - - putting things off since 1965 " I'll get around to it tomorrow, .... maybe "

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