I recently took the very exciting plunge and bought a C&P 10x15 (photo attached). It has surface rust in a lot of areas from having been in a garage not used for 4 years (inking disk, platen, back shaft, chase, etc).
1. Any advice on how to safely remove this rust and restore it so it’s ready to use?
2. I’m planning to paint certain parts in black to give it that original look! Any advice of what kind of paint to use, where to avoid painting, etc?
3. General tips on a light restoration would be much appreciated!
Thanks in advance!
Sarah from Montreal
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Here are some pics for reference!
when I clean up an old press I just use a fine steel wool and some press wash, that rust on your press isn’t bad at all. For the parts that are painted I usually wipe them down with a cloth with a little oil on it.
As a woodworker, we immerse parts in vinegar to remove rust off our vintage hand planes. Not sure if you could utilize this in your cleaning - Be sure to rinse off and dry thoroughly afterwards though if you do decide to use an acid.
I use fine steel wool and press wash and a razor blade scraper, then I move to fine steel wool and an light oil, and then to a 400 - 1000 grit wet dry sandpaper and finish with a metal polish.
I spend extra time polishing the exposed steel surface on the flywheel because I handle this a lot while using the press. The toughest challenge is the big gear opposite the flywheel. On this I use the same process as above but get the little tiny steel brushes (along with a tiny scraper) and use them on the gear teeth and on other stained surfaces.
I try to keep the original paint on the press as much as possible. To get things to blend in I have removed small parts, such as some of the levers and some of the ink assembly parts that are really caked with old ink and sand blast them at a local shop and paint them with black Home Depot latex all in one paint and primer. If the parts are completely cleaned that paint stands up very well, and blends with the original color for both hue and sheen closely. At least it did on an old C&P I have.
Personally I prefer the look of a machine that is clean and well cared for to one that is painted up and restored.
The press in the picture looks in good condition and should clean up very well.
It is a very large amount of work but can be very rewarding.
I should add that the above applies to the exposed steel surfaces. On the painted parts I just use press wash and elbow grease. The original finish on these old C&P’s is amazing and stands up very well.
bare metal, fine steel wool, scotchbright with kerosene.
painted parts degreaser followed up with hot soapy water, scraper or putty knife for dried ink. when done should be good to go paint or not.