You can buy all sorts of rust removal formulas, many of which are toxic, and also cost money. However, there’s a much better method to removing rust and it involves using kitchen utensils only.

To remove rust using kitchen(*) utensils, you need

  1. Aluminium(**) foil.
  2. Oil. I think any oil will do, say, canola oil, although I must admit I cheated and used some bicycle oil, since I was cleaning a headset and didn’t feel like cooking it afterwards.

(*) If you do not know where or what the kitchen is, it is the room where your wife cooks your food. Sorry, I couldn’t resist 😀

(**) That’s “aluminum” for those of you who still measure distances in terms of your feet.

Now crumble the Al into a ball and put some oil on the rust spot. Then use the ball to scour it off. The speed at which this works is one of the few things that justifies the word “awesome”. Then use a rag to wipe it clean.

Here’s a picture of a saddle I cleaned: left vs right.


Now, it will be impossible to remove pits and if the rust is so bad it’s flaking, there’s an easier method using garage tools and some high school chemistry. This will be covered in a future post.

Originally posted 2009-08-21 00:02:12.