Iron vs Acetone

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  • Last Post 15 February 2018
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BigMan54 posted this 08 February 2018

I was thinking ( if ya know me it's time to start laughing ). Instead of letting my iron molds soak in acetone while waiting for the melt, and then scrubbing the heck out of them. Preheating them on the hotplate for 5 minutes, then scrubbing again with brake cleaner, putting back on the hotplate to come up to casting temp.  Could I put them in a sealed glass jar of acetone & let them sit over night. Say 12-15 hours ?  Would they rust ? In that time frame ?

Yeah I know, when I feel out of the tree I not only hit the "ugly" branch on the way down, I hit the "screw up/break everything" branch too. And I'm still lying on top the "stupid" branch.

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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frnkeore posted this 08 February 2018

After my molds are seasoned and casting well, I never do anything with them, except keep then in dry, room temperature room. They never rust, when stored like that.

I put them on the edge of the pot, while waiting for it to get to temp and then cast.

 

Frank

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BigMan54 posted this 08 February 2018

I live too close to the ocean. Iv'e been fighting rust all my life here, Except for 4yrs U.S. NAVY has been almost 60yrs. learned a lot about rust in the Service too. Don't live on the water anymore so at least I don't have to use naval jelly on everything anymore.

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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BHyett posted this 08 February 2018

You will be okay. Acetone is is not hygroscopic, it will evaporate faster than it can absorb water from the air. Presoaking will possibly help, but an overnight soaking might be overkill. Vent the fumes or do this in the open as acetone odor permeates anything close.

I use a rubber mat in the bottom of boxes when I store molds. This mat is impregnated with VPI  (Vapor Phase Inhibitor) and I sometime wonder if the VPI contaminates the mold surface since I often must clean the molds after long-term storage. 

 

Country boy from Illinois, living in the Magical Pacific Northwest

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Old Coot posted this 09 February 2018

Big Man 54;  I lived within a mile and a half of the ocean in Long Beach Ca. for 50+ years.  The best way to handle de-greased and oil free cast iron molds is to store them in a 50 cal ammo can (20mm for gang moulds with the handles on) with VPI powder (available from a gun smith supplier on the web [can't think of the name right now] or wrapped in VPI paper (Vapor Phase Inhibiting) as soon as the moulds have cooled to the touch.  This will keep your moulds rust free, and ready to warm and cast any time you want to.  A good ammo can will be air tight which is what you want. 

After a theft of a number of my Father's rifles and shotguns he bought a treadlock gun box.  Unless you have the key or a cutting torch you can not get into one.  Unfortunately Dad wrapped the guns in old blankets and covers to keep them from getting dinged up.  I still don't have all of them re-blued where moisture from the marine layer that came in almost every evening and managed to dampen most of those wrappings.  I repaired or replaced almost all of the doors on a development located at Colorado St. and PCH due to this moisture. 

Ammo can with VPI powder or paper is the best way to go that I know of to prevent rust in that environment. 

That development's contractor made me enough money to retire early up here in the Coconino National Forest.

Good Luck

 

B.E.Brickey

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Eutectic posted this 09 February 2018

After an initial degreasing ( mineral spirits, acetone or hot detergent wash, any will work), I NEVER  oil my molds. I have several small ammo cans for mold blocks and tall ones for blocks with handles.

There is a large silica gel desiccant pack in each can and a humidity indicator on the inside of the cover. I have to regenerate the silica gel pack in the wife's oven about once a year. The molds go back in the can while hot from the casting table. No rust in 50+ years of casting, the molds still look new except for the black oxide from years of use.

Silica gel and indicators are available from Brownell's and frequently in military surplus stores.  The calcium chloride dehumidifiers (Damp Rid or others) sold in grocery stores are corrosive, not good for metal storage.

 

 

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porthos posted this 09 February 2018

i have around 15 molds that haven't been used in 25 years. they are wrapped in VPI paper and stored in a 50 cal. ammo can; nothing else. they are still perfect.

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GP Idaho posted this 09 February 2018

Like Eutectic, I NEVER oil moulds. One of the nice things about living in arid S.W. Idaho, things don't rust to the extent they do in areas of high humidity. I lube the sprue plate very sparingly with dielectric silicone grease and put a touch of 2-cycle motor oil on the pins. The moulds are simply set on a shelf above my loading bench and I've never had one with even a hint of rust. I HATE when oil gets in the cavities and sure wouldn't put it there on purpose. I use a solid top hotplate to preheat the moulds. Gp

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Ross Smith posted this 09 February 2018

My question is why are you using acetone in the first place, it is not a good oil solvent.

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BigMan54 posted this 09 February 2018

Tried the ammo can route, Must have had chinee made vpi paper. As far as oiling the mold goes I've had molds start to rust after a casting session before they cooled off enough to put away. Tried storing them in the gunsafe resting against Dehumidifier Rod. But rod isn't long enough and there isn't enough room to store all my molds this way. 

I've always oiled my molds, taught to do that at a young age. Also have used acetone to clean oil from molds because my Dad taught me to do it that way. I preheat my molds on a 1000w coil hotplate with a cast iron diffuser plate. Preheat ingots too.

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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Ross Smith posted this 10 February 2018

BM54; for a cheap experiment try cleaning the molds with bon ami. We used it all the time in the lab to clean glass ware. Leaves no residue.

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BigMan54 posted this 10 February 2018

Ross,

Does it have to be BON AMI brand or will any cleanser do ?

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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Ross Smith posted this 10 February 2018

I would use Bon ami but any will do. Comet etc probably more effective but they are mildly abrasive. They don't scare me but I recommended the "safer-milder" bon ami. Kinda like powder loads that aren't published in a book anywhere but we do it anyway.

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BigMan54 posted this 10 February 2018

I was trying to avoid anything to do with water. For some reason I can't understand I get flash rusting in the cavities between the sink and the burner on the stove. Rinse molds after scrubbing oil off with DAWN. Place mold halves cavities down on burner and still get rust. I even blow the cavities with canned air to get rid of excess water. 

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 10 February 2018

bon ami is a very gentle cleaning aid ... you can actually polish your eyeglasses or auto plastic lens covers or windshield with it  .... comet will haze y ruin  those same materials.

( i have a sis-in-law that proudly cleaned the family car with comet .. )

******************

i use brake cleaner and a toothbrush on my new or stored molds before i cast... takes 30 seconds  ... because i oil the molds in y out before storing . 

i have wondered if dipping in hot paste wax wouldn't do the trick and not make me feel so guilty   ... maybe i have bot too many rusty molds that nobody oiled  ...

ken, sulking in perpetual guilt 

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R. Dupraz posted this 10 February 2018

Brake Cleaner is your friend ! applause

R. 

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Ross Smith posted this 11 February 2018

If you use bon ami and a toothbrush, don't use your wife's electric toothbrush.

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Hoppy posted this 11 February 2018

I live in Wisconsin, where it's damp off & on throughout the year--so I have to be careful about storing my bullet molds. I never oil molds any more (got tired of the cleanup regimen). Now I keep my molds in a good ammo can or dry box (with a good gasket sealing the lid). I wrap the molds in VPI paper or put them in a plastic bag with some VPI powder, then they go into the ammo can along with a package of desiccant to absorb any stray moisture that might get in. It's a good idea to put a desiccant indicator strip in as well to tell you if the moisture absorber needs rejuvenation in the oven. All this may be overkill, but it doesn't take long to do, and with this method I've never had a mold rust. Also: I generally think it's a bad idea to clean molds with any water solution of any kind. I believe that water can actually get into the surface of the iron and stay there for a while. Keep water away from your molds!

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BigMan54 posted this 15 February 2018

Well I did the stupid again. Took a glass jar, put a 4cav mold into it and filled it with acetone. Set it out on the back steps before l went to bed, about 1100hrs.  

AND IT FREAKING RAINED !!!! IT RAINED IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA!!!!!!.

Opened the jar about 0730. RUST IN THE CAVITIES, FACES AND ALIGNMENT PIN HOLES. Crusty crap over everything else.

Spent about an hour cleaning up the mold. It should be OK, but it kinda killed my enthusiasm for casting this morning.  The mold is now clean and ready to cast. I hope I can cast tomorrow. 

The idea of leaving an iron mold soaking in acetone overnight is a TOTAL BUST. I don't know if the rain had anything to do with the rust factor. The seal on the jar was tight.

I wonder what my next "brilliant" idea will be ?.....??? 

The suspense must be overwhelming.  

Back to brake cleaner.

Stupid signing off

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 15 February 2018

bigman

hey columbus discovered america ... well, san isabel ..... yeager broke the sound barrier ...

and now bigman has made a breakthru that will spread throughout the casting community , probably saving many thousands to follow from storing bullet molds in acetone ....

we travel forward on the backs of giants ... 

ken

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BigMan54 posted this 15 February 2018

Ken,

Laugh, just go ahead and laugh, laugh 'til your sides hurt.

But remember this; once you're finished laughing, you'll have nothing to laugh at until

I DO SOMETHING STUPID AGAIN !!!!! 

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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