The screws, washers and fittings of the plane are also in need of a bit of TLC. The steel components had a fair amount of surface rust, as well as a build up of wood dust and grease, especially in the threaded areas. I put them in a bath of white spirit to loosen things up a bit, and I used a small wire brush to clear out the debris. Once they were dry it was a simple matter of rubbing down the flat areas with fine grit sandpaper. I’m not aiming for perfection here, I just want to get them reasonably clean and rust free.
The brass components are a different matter. They of course don’t rust, but they are quite tarnished. This can be remedied with a brass polish a some elbow grease. I used Brasso, but I’m sure other products are available. Once the tarnishing is removed with the polish, a quick buff with a clean cloth makes them all bright and shiny. I gave the chrome lever cap the same treatment.
The handles too, need some work. A lot of work.
The black paint that they are coated with is truly horrible, and a nightmare to get rid of.
I started by using a paint stripping product to get rid of the worst of it. That worked reasonably well, and I was left to sand my down to bare wood.
This picture is actually quite flattering. They looked a lot worse in real life.
The paint had stained the wood so much that I had to make a choice between leaving a certain amount of staining on, or continues sanding and risk ending up with misshapen handles. I decided to leave the staining and try to blend it in with the finish.
I used sanding sealer (shellac) stained with a dark oak wood dye. I applied three coats of this and finished with a couple of coats of wax for a silky finish. The results were actually not that terrible and the finished result has a nice looking patina.
Next time, well take a look at the iron and cap iron.