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Old 03-26-07, 05:03 PM   #1
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Need a little help with corrosion...

Hi all...I need to clean some corrosion off of metal. The pieces in question are small, and fairly delicate (EKG leads). They look to be copper, coated with maybe nickel, though I'm not sure. The corrosion on them is that greenish-white stuff you see on old pennies and other copper pieces. Someone suggested using CLR to clean it...would that be too harsh? Any other readily-available products that would work in this situation?

Thanks folks.
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Old 03-26-07, 05:26 PM   #2
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CLR was my first thought too.
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Old 03-26-07, 09:42 PM   #3
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I don't even know what EKG leads do, other than I'm guessing plug into an EKG, and I still don't know what that is. Regardless, my theory would be to soak them in some mild form of petrolium distilate like Hoppes gun oil, or maybe mineral spirits. Then again, if the leads have plastic or rubber on them, that probably wouldn't be too smart either.
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Old 03-26-07, 09:50 PM   #4
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That stuff that used to be advertised on TV, the no polish silver/metal cleaner.

I'm not sure you'll be able to recover those leads though. They have to have sufficient conductivity to pick up the magnetic field generated by the heart beat and conduct it to the monitor at sufficient line voltage to be interpreted and corrosion significantly raises the impedance. I'll check some medical databases and see if there is any info on this there. BRB
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Old 03-26-07, 09:54 PM   #5
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http://www.unchealthcare.org/site/Nu...20Rev.%20H.pdf

More info here....replacement is recommended for any damage to the leads on even a low resolution nondiagnostic ECG and I assume the EKG (Diagnostic quality ) will be the same.
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Old 03-27-07, 05:18 AM   #6
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What you have here is

a) the plating was damaged, allowing the copper to corode.

b) the cable was corroding, which eventually found it's way into the connector

In the case of A, you could fix that with a thorough cleaning down to the copper, and then a re-plate (difficult).

In the case of B, the cable is already compromised....replace it.


If this is a cable that will be used in a medical environment (from the sounds of it, that's the intent)...replace it, no matter what. Don't play the "make it work" game on medical equipment.


edit: CLR will work, but it will just corrode again, since the protective nickel plating has been compromised.
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Old 03-27-07, 10:09 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catatonic
What you have here is

a) the plating was damaged, allowing the copper to corode.

b) the cable was corroding, which eventually found it's way into the connector

In the case of A, you could fix that with a thorough cleaning down to the copper, and then a re-plate (difficult).

In the case of B, the cable is already compromised....replace it.


If this is a cable that will be used in a medical environment (from the sounds of it, that's the intent)...replace it, no matter what. Don't play the "make it work" game on medical equipment.


edit: CLR will work, but it will just corrode again, since the protective nickel plating has been compromised.

Well, I tried the CLR, and it hasn't done squat. I left the leads soaking in a half-and-half mix for 3 hours. No dice.

I'm doing this for my wife. Her unit has several sets of new leads, but they like to have back-ups in case of loss (leads sent down in the laundry, leads left on patients when they're transferred, leads stolen by other units, leads taken by ambulance crews, etc). The two sets she gave me to resurrect just aren't going to make it, apparently.
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