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Tank cleaning / derusting
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cocorico
Central France
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April 30, 2019 - 12:21 pm
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BSAdave said
... I prefer to use the much safer method of rust removal using Electrolysis, clean and no nasty chemicals involved the waste product can be disposed legally down the drains.

Each to there own.  

BASIL said
Hi, I use warm caustic soda solution and a battery charger usually derusts a tank in less than an hour without any problems. Regards Basil.  

Bear in mind that electrolysis also uses a strong alkali as the electrolyte (though maybe safer than a strong acid).

I've used electrolysis successfully, but also find white vinegar effective. The main thing, whatever you use, is to read the safety instructions, wear appropriate clothing, use lots of water to dilute the residue and TAKE CARE.

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Concretecow
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April 30, 2019 - 10:41 pm
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BSAdave said
Sounds well dodgy to me , Acute (short-term) inhalation exposure of Hydrochloric acid may cause eye, nose, and respiratory tract irritation and inflammation and pulmonary edema .

Use this method at your own risk. I prefer to use the much safer method of rust removal using Electrolysis, clean and no nasty chemicals involved the waste product can be disposed legally down the drains.

Each to there own.  

Dave, you're absolutely correct about the exposure to hydrogen chloride.  However, a large proportion of my post was about precautions.  I carried it out in the open air, and didn't even smell it since the fuming of the dilute solution of 30% hydrochloric acid is a) minimal, and b) easily dispersed outside without the risk of a plume developing that will necessitate evacuating the neighbourhood.  Don't forget, Hydrochloric acid and Phosphoric acid are sold mail order as common drain unblockers, same as your caustic soda, so can also safely be disposed of down the drain.  I didn't mention it, but I also wore safety glasses, and informed the rest of my family what I was up to, and not to come near.  Although my teenage daughter took a keen scientific interest in the reduction of the ferric oxide by the hydrochloric acid.  I even had to dig out the chemical equation for her.  She was amazed at the result, and fascinated by the practical application of basic chemistry.  One point to Dad.  

From my high school chemistry, doesn't electrolysis of Sodium Hydroxide produce explosive Hydrogen gas at the cathode?  If so, in sufficient quantity, if ignited by a spark from the charger inside the tank, it may well douse the user in highly alkali caustic soda solution.  Oh, and please don't state or imply that caustic soda is safe and is not a nasty chemical.  It is.  Very.  Alkali burns are actually worse than acid burns, particularly splashed in the eye.

Just shows, whatever method is employed, you should know and understand all the risks involved and chemicals should always be treated with respect, and handled with caution.

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swalsh58
St. Mary's Bay, Kent
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April 30, 2019 - 11:01 pm
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I don’t believe they use caustic soda but soda bicarbonate - washing crystals. It’s the electrolysis that removes the rust. The solution is just the conduit. So I am led to believe....

Current bikes......1958 D5,  and a 76 Honda C90 in the workshop.

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BSAdave
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May 1, 2019 - 8:41 am
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When i do it no nasty chemicals , just washing soda . Just pointing out the dangers of your method.

D1 D3 D5 D7 Suzuki TS 125, Yamaha YDS7 250

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Concretecow
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May 1, 2019 - 7:12 pm
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BSAdave said
When i do it no nasty chemicals , just washing soda . Just pointing out the dangers of your method.  

Ah, I had read Cocorico's post which had amalgamated both yours and Basil's posts.  It was Basil that was using the caustic.  I thought you were using the same chemicals and method.  Sodium Bicarbonate is an entirely different beast altogether.  It is safer, but as we both agree, there are dangers in using chemicals if the right precautions are not taken.  Although to be honest, the stage of the process trhat I hadn't properly risk assessed was leaving the tank in the airing cupboard to dry......

Cheers

Concretecow

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