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Removing cosmolene

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GK1918

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#1
Anyone into rebuilding engines knows that 1948 & back rod bearings Ford are big bucks (floating bearings) Made short we received
the bearings and looking at the box and printed ink I know exactly where they came from "military" as expected they are entombed in cosmolene. Gas and kero diesel has worked for me in the past, but these are NOS 70+ yrs old. Gas Lacquer thinner does nothing.
Any ideas >> hot water - hair dryer ? thought I would ask can't screw up $250 worth. sam
 
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#2
I always use brake cleaner or acetone.... that’s all I got...
 
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#3
Mabee try a heat gun to soften the petrified cosmolene.
I've been cleaning a new machine and its still work to get it off, but minimal spirits is all I used when paint finishes are involved followed by WD-40.
Might try to soak a rag over the stuff after preheat.
 

Ironside

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#4
A parts washer with a pump might work to circulate the solvent over it continuously. Might take some time though.
 

Aukai

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#5
Try putting very hot water on a towel, and let it sit on a portion of a bearing to see if it softens the cosmolene.
 

benmychree

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#6
Perhaps carburetor/parts cleaner in a bucket. I saw a boring mill column years ago that had been stored outdoors for likely 20 years, the cosmoline was baked hard, like roofing asphalt, it had to be removed by a carbide hand scraper, same thing for the bed ways, figure 60 feet of flat ways, two tracks about 12" or more wide!
 

DoogieB

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#7
Had a Soviet-block rifle like that: tough, thick, old cosmoline that laughed at any type of solvent I threw at it. The trick was to hold the action in one hand with an old welding glove and rinse the goop off with boiling water right out of the tea kettle. It worked perfectly as it just melted right off.

Kinda messy, though.
 

benmychree

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Had a Soviet-block rifle like that: tough, thick, old cosmoline that laughed at any type of solvent I threw at it. The trick was to hold the action in one hand with an old welding glove and rinse the goop off with boiling water right out of the tea kettle. It worked perfectly as it just melted right off.

Kinda messy, though.
Likely steam cleaning would work also, but it did not work on the boring mill parts.
 

eugene13

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#9
Boiling hot water
 

GK1918

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#10
Thanks all heat gun did the trick. These bearings have or looks like layers of wax paper duncked in cosomolene.
Even the boxes had thick cosmolene. Tons of parts were air dropped in remote areas WWII
 
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#11
Glad it worked for you.
 

Tony Wells

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As an aside, now that the OP has resolved the issue, I would like to plug a product I found quite surprising. Some of you guys may already know about it, but it was new to me. Rustoleum has a spray degreaser that really shocked me. I was swapping out some bucket pins on a track hoe and needed to wipe down the pins and bores. Went to NAPA to get some carb or brake cleaner and saw that product. It smells sort of like a combination of citrus-like cleaner with some solvent. But it cut that nasty grease better than any solvent I have tried. I don't know what's in it, but it dries slower than the carb and brake cleaners, allowing it to dissolve whatever gunk you spray it on. I keep some around now. I have not seen it, despite looking and asking at the lumberyards and home centers who carry a "full line" of Rustoleum products, but only at the NAPA store. I wish I had found it a long time ago.

*standard disclaimer: No affiliation, just very satisfied user.
 

Moper361

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As an aside, now that the OP has resolved the issue, I would like to plug a product I found quite surprising. Some of you guys may already know about it, but it was new to me. Rustoleum has a spray degreaser that really shocked me. I was swapping out some bucket pins on a track hoe and needed to wipe down the pins and bores. Went to NAPA to get some carb or brake cleaner and saw that product. It smells sort of like a combination of citrus-like cleaner with some solvent. But it cut that nasty grease better than any solvent I have tried. I don't know what's in it, but it dries slower than the carb and brake cleaners, allowing it to dissolve whatever gunk you spray it on. I keep some around now. I have not seen it, despite looking and asking at the lumberyards and home centers who carry a "full line" of Rustoleum products, but only at the NAPA store. I wish I had found it a long time ago.

*standard disclaimer: No affiliation, just very satisfied user.
Interesting Tony that you have mentioned Citrus as I also stumbled over some solvent here in Thailand that is used to clear of the very tacky residue left from various stickers and tape backing ,This product also is a citrus based oil and I will say it does a remarkable job on braking down that sticky residue left by stickers etc it cuts it away in no time flat ,I also use it for cleaning various items and it does a great job .Sounds similar to the product you mention .
 

RobertHaas

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#14
you own a hot plate?

High detergent motor oil heated to 250 degrees in a old cooking pot with the part soaking in that for a couple minutes works amazing
 

Tony Wells

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Moper361

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Ken, I'd have to look at the can I have on the truck, but I don't remember seeing the "3500". I think it may be this, although it does not mention citrus:

https://www.rustoleum.com/product-c...leaners/cleaners/273928-heavy-duty-degreaser/

I'll look tomorrow and post what I have. Now I'm curious about the 3500.
Ken Tony
This is the one I found in Thailand I mentioned before to Tony .and it is citrus based .Im not sure if the rust oleum product is similar with citrus but from what Tony described in his earlier post quite possibly a very simalar product image.png image.png
 

KBeitz

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#18
I use a ultrasonic cleaner to clean anything that doesn't want to be cleaned....
I'm surprised every time I use it....
 
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