This is a tutorial will show you how to quickly, safely, and economically remove the rust from your bearings.
Please note, this tutorial is regarding steel ball bearings only. White vinegar is a human safe acid, but will dissolve copper and nickel. Aluminum has no reaction with vinegar.
Portions of this regarding solvent should be done in a well ventilated area with adult supervision.
Please follow the directions explicitly and do not change the solution by adding other chemicals that someone tells you will “help”, such as salt, baking soda, coca cola and peroxide.
This is the bearing from my first trade and will serve as the subject for this tutorial.
Things you will need
Toothbrush or cloth
A transparent jar or cup
1.Clean the lubricant off of your rusted bearing with your preferred solvent.
Allow the bearing to dry completely. Compressed air will speed the process.
this is the bearing I am using today
- Pour enough white vinegar into a jar so that the bearing can be completely submerged.
Make sure you use WHITE vinegar, not cider or balsamic. This is not a salad.
- Now Place bearing into the vinegar. You will begin to see hydrogen bubbles forming on the bearing. Remove the bearing every 2 hours and give it a scrub with the toothbrush or cloth to remove loosened rust. If corrosion is heavy, or if time is not a factor, you may also leave the bearing in the vinegar overnight and achieve similar effects.
After 3 hours…
After 12 hours
After 24 hours
- Once the oxidation has been removed, place bearing someplace warm and dry till the vinegar evaporates completely. Your should give it a spin every now and again to to insure there is no vinegar trapped in the race. White vinegar does not leave a residue when it evaporates, so you will not need to do additional cleaning.
DO NOT rinse the bearing in soapy water!
DO NOT place the bearing in a solvent (mineral spirit) bath before it is dry!
Either of these things will accelerate the corrosion returning.
Your bearing is now restored and ready to be installed dry or lubed.
Please note that heavily corroded bearings will display pitting and will not be shiny.
Thanx for reading