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cleaning corrosion out of recessed Allen head fasteners

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cleaning corrosion out of recessed Allen head fasteners

Old 01-07-15, 08:27 PM
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cleaning corrosion out of recessed Allen head fasteners

I am refreshing some vintage scoots and have one that was not stoed in an ideal environment ---

its not rusty per se' -- but i need to clean the corrosion out of the fastener cups -- nearly everything else is aluminum -

Any hot tips? Possibly a teeny drill mounted wire brush?

I have been trying wd-40 soaked q-tips with little success so far

thanks in advance
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Old 01-07-15, 08:33 PM
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Oxalic acid? Barkeepers Friend cleaner has this in it; you can put some in with a q-tip or whatever, let it sit a bit, brush and rinse. Then wax or something to keep it from rusting again.
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Old 01-07-15, 08:37 PM
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I was just dealing with this last night, bought an all-original beach-town (rusty) Jamis Dakar (nice mtb btw) from 1987 and the allen keys wouldn't go into half of the socket heads.

I took a very thin blade screwdriver, and with a circular motion I orbitally moved the blade in a forceful (outward) circular path within the socket. The turning blade chopped away at the corrosion nicely, and some water from the previous spray bath served to mobilize the corrosion, leaving the sockets pretty clean.

The worst Allen screw heads were on the XT M732 pedals, those shallow heads had thick chrome that had partially bubbled inward. I used some light oil on those along with the screwdriver. I kept the screwdriver parallel to the bolts at all times, which scraped the inside flats effectively.
BTW, I learned this method years ago from dealing with the gnarled Allen heads on SPD cleat bolts.

Today I had a go at doing all of the little fixes and adjustments, and the wrenches were thankfully easy to fit into the bolt heads.
Some kind soul had installed new brake pads and tires, and my first ride went well.

Last edited by dddd; 01-07-15 at 08:42 PM.
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Old 01-07-15, 08:51 PM
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Q tip with Simichrome. Mount it on a variable drill if the need arises.
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Old 01-07-15, 09:54 PM
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Chuck the bolt in a drill motor. Turn at low speed while pushing some 0000 steel wool into the head, or push a brass bristle brush into the head while it spins.
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Old 01-07-15, 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by jiangshi View Post
Q tip with Simichrome. Mount it on a variable drill if the need arises.
+1.. I've used a q-tip chucked up in a drill. I've also used twigs, preferably sorta green an pliable, chucked in a drill.
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Old 01-07-15, 11:01 PM
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@DMC707 - for rust use naval jelly & use a tiny cheap paint brush to get it in there. You say it's corrosion, so use 0000 steel wool, push down in there with some degreaser & twist it around. That steel wool does all sorts of stuff. Could try an old toothbrush or wired brush. Steel wool is pliable & will form & fit into all kinds of spaces.
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Old 01-07-15, 11:31 PM
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You could use a primer pocket cleaning brush. These are available at most stores that sell firearms.
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Old 01-07-15, 11:35 PM
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I tape them up and sandblast the inside of the hole. I have what looks like a paint ***, but with a leather bag attached to it. Fill the bag up with sand and its a spot sand blaster. Works great.
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Old 01-08-15, 05:06 AM
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I use a distributor socket cleaning brush to clean out allen head screws. Then afterwards I get a Q-Tip dip, with silver paint and paint the inside of the allen socket.

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Old 01-08-15, 05:46 AM
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I've crammed aluminum foil into them and twisted back and forth. Depending on the level of corrosion it can be effective. For stubborn corners I get out a dental pick and work the offending spots out.
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Old 01-08-15, 06:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Michael Angelo View Post
Then afterwards I get a Q-Tip dip, with silver paint and paint the inside of the allen socket.
I always do the same with silver paint. Just went over my Paramount's Allen-heads yesterday.
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Old 01-08-15, 08:44 AM
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Just toss the bolt and any other parts in some Evaporust. It will soften the crud and get rid of any rust. You can qtip out whatever doesn't rinse out when washing off with water.
The Evaporust can then be used again and again.
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Old 01-08-15, 09:04 AM
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simichrome works good on bare metals, I'm giving the Evaporust a try on some mtb parts this weekend

which is more corrosive? Oxalic acid or phosphoric acid (naval jelly)? I've used Oxalic on painted surfaces like frames
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Old 01-14-15, 08:50 AM
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Look on Ebay for a pencil brush that is used on a Dremel.
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Old 01-16-15, 04:56 PM
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I use a variety of wire brush attachments and very thin stone attachments with a Dremel drill to clean out any and all rusted allen bolts. Works every time and takes about 10 seconds.
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Old 01-16-15, 05:39 PM
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i use naval jelly and replace the used portion back in its container when done.
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