Hemmings Motor News Blog Blog

Hemmings Motor News Blog

Hemmings Motor News has been around since 1954. We're proud of our heritage, but we're also more than the Hemmings full of classifieds that your father subscribed to. Aside from new editorial content every month in Hemmings, we have three monthly magazines: Hemmings Muscle Machines, Hemmings Classic Car and Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car.

While our editors traverse the country to find the best content for those magazines, we find other oddities related to the old-car hobby that we really had no place for - until now. With this blog, we're giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what we see and what we do during the course of putting out some of the finest automotive magazines you'll ever read.

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Rust, the Common Enemy of All Car Enthusiasts, is as Damaging as it is Complicated

Posted October 10, 2022 6:57 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: coatings Corrosion

For as much of an annoyance as rust represents to the average car collector — especially those of us north of the Mason-Dixon and east of the Mississippi — we sure don't spend much time talking about the actual mechanics or chemistry of it. Sure, it seems simple on the surface; it's just a chemical reaction that any high-schooler could understand, after all.

However, as I discovered when explaining the process by which salt on winter roads makes rust so much worse, rust is a topic that can get complicated fast. In fact, it's a topic that some engineers, chemists and scientists devote their entire careers to, meaning there's a wealth of information out there about how to prevent, mitigate, and ultimately live with rust.

Though Practical Engineering's recent video series on corrosion doesn't really address rust in the terms we gearheads typically do, it does lean on that wealth of information to explore just how much damage corrosion really does and the value of a good coating (along with correct application of that coating) to prevent rust. None of this will stop municipalities and states from salting the roads with the vigor of a man who's angling for a heart attack salting his steak, but at least it gives us a better understanding of rust, its processes and what we can do about it.

(For what it's worth, Robert Murray-Smith recently described iron oxide as "the perfect fuel." If so, are those of us in the collector car hobby sitting on a gold mine with all of our rusty old cars and trucks?)

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Re: Rust, the Common Enemy of All Car Enthusiasts, is as Damaging as it is Complicated

10/10/2022 1:33 PM

Coming from the northern states… when your restoring a car, you need to know ‘when to say when…’

thats the most difficult part for me, you want to do things right. On the other hand, my pockets have limits on what you can spend.

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Re: Rust, the Common Enemy of All Car Enthusiasts, is as Damaging as it is Complicated

10/11/2022 4:38 PM

When rust forms between 2 parts and deforms them between fasteners (or stretches/breaks the fasteners if the connected parts are stiff enough,) what is this called? I've been using the term "pack out," but is this correct? Thanks.

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