Speaking of Precision Blog

Speaking of Precision

Speaking of Precision is a knowledge preservation and thought leadership blog covering the precision machining industry, its materials and services. With over 36 years of hands on experience in steelmaking, manufacturing, quality, and management, Miles Free (Milo) Director of Industry Research and Technology at PMPA helps answer "How?" "With what?" and occasionally "Really?"

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4 Types of Factors That Can Affect Whether Your Parts Rust

Posted July 27, 2011 9:00 AM by Milo
User-tagged by 1 user

Yes, you put on rust preventive. Yet, some parts seem more prone to rust than others.

Why do some parts rust more easily than others?

PMPA members rely on the members-only Listserves to collectively solve problems and to advance everyone's knowledge of the craft.

So it was no surprise to me at the end of July to see a post on PMPA's Quality Listserve asking if some steels are more prone to rusting than others.

That same morning I emptied 45 pints of water out of the basement dehumidifier …

I counted six member company respondents to the original question, including one respondent with a specific example. Plus, PMPA staff contributed a reply. This is the value of PMPA Member only Listserves. Every respondent is in the trade, and their experience and expertise is known - no Aliases.

So what are some of the factors that can contribute to your regular carbon or alloy steel parts rusting? Here is a brief summary of the factors brought up:

Steel related factors

  • The steels' electrode potential
  • Chemical composition - unless a self-healing film is generated by the alloying additions, more complicated chemistry means more likely to rust;
  • Chemically non-homogeneous surface - (segregation)
  • Physically non-homogenous surface - texture, pits and cracks and crevices

Processing related factors

  • Is a film existing from prior operations (scale from mill rolling, oil from machining etc.) to prevent permeation of Oxygen and water -and is it intact?
  • Is there a significant difference in section thickness?
  • Is the part or places on the part highly stressed? (Stress can help accelerate the reaction)
  • Were other substances deposited on the material which could accelerate or inhibit rusting? (Metal fines, salts, carbon 'smut' , acids or bases)?
  • Does a result of the process leave cracks crevices, or other similar features?

Environmental factors

  • Solution in contact (presence and type)
  • Hydrogen ion availability (pH) of the moisture
  • Oxygen level
  • Other ions species, their type and electro-activity
  • Flow or exchange rate of solution (or stagnation)
  • Degree of wetting
  • Temperature / Humidity time of year
  • Location: inside, controlled climate, or in transit
  • Is their cyclic stress?

Finally, in the case where two or more dissimilar metals are in contact (Even welded) the electrochemical potentials of these being different will result in the most anodic (Active) (A= anode = active) will be corroded by the most noble (Noble= Not as reactive).

Poor Engineering Factor

  • Dissimilar metals contacting. (Galvanic corrosion)

Of course, all of these factors can interact, and I note that the rust question is a little early this year. It usually arrived about mid-August most years when I was handling claims at the steel company.

This is the meat of the PMPA Listserve discussion. What we didn't provide here in this post were the specific tips, tricks, product recommendations and other insights that some poster's shared regarding their packaging and rust preventive application to prevent Rust from occurring in various situations.

PMPA Listserves- Advancing member competitiveness with each question asked.

Link to Lee Erb's Galvanic series Table at EAA

Editor's Note: CR4 would like to thanks Milo for contributing this blog entry, which originally appeared here.

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#1

Re: 4 Types of Factors That Can Affect Whether Your Parts Rust

07/30/2011 1:18 PM

Another informative post, cheers
... but what about wood.
Del

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#2
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Re: 4 Types of Factors That Can Affect Whether Your Parts Rust

07/31/2011 2:44 PM

Can you make bows or shafts of ironwood?

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