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Old 10-11-2008, 09:32 PM   #1
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Default Rusted burner. Is it salvageable?

So I did not take very good of my propane burner. I got a bit rusty. I was noticing it was not performing very well. Lots of soot, flames shooting up the sides of the pot, burning through a lot of propane...

I took it apart and it is wicked rusty inside and out. I scrubbed it a bit with WD-40 and some steel wool. What I am wondering though is whether it is worth it. I mean I cannot paint it so I cannot protect from rusting again. Being cast iron now it will rust just from moisture in the air since it is already rusty right? I have a second burner so I switched them out, but I was hoping to use one of them as a burner for my HLT eventually.

It is your typical iron turkey fryer burner. Any thoughts?

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Old 10-11-2008, 11:46 PM   #2
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bumpity...

BUMP!

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Old 10-12-2008, 03:54 AM   #3
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two things:

My dad cleans antique cast iron pans with Drano. Yes. Drano. A month long soak and they come out looking better than new. (hey, not bad for a 50 year old griswold...) You might get away with a short soak for your burner.

There's a spray called 'Rust preventer' I've used it for tools, but don't know if the heat from the burner will drive off all the goodies that are in the spray. I bought the can o spray at HD or Lowes in the paint section. I think it's made by loctite.

B

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Old 10-12-2008, 03:59 AM   #4
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Yeah, I noticed that my burner was not preforming well and that it gotten all rusty. I took it apart and just used some sand paper. Seemed to help a lot, works great now.

I think it is worth a try.

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Old 10-12-2008, 04:04 AM   #5
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i took mine apart and used a sandblaster(a cheapo menard/harbor fright model) to clean the rust off, gave it a good blow with the airgun then. then heated it to op temp turn off and spray down with veggie oil, this is the same way you season a cast iron pan, if you spray your burner down after use it will prvent most rust from forming and the oil will burn off in the first couple minutes of operation.


edit: also check the gas line from the breather to the burner, i had a spider make a web/nest inside the breather that caused the same symptoms as the OP problem

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Old 10-12-2008, 04:24 AM   #6
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Clean the loose paint and rust off then treat the iron with a phosphoric acid wash to stabilize the remaining rust , then give it a coat of high temp paint. The phosphoric acid product is available at auto parts and paint stores for treating rusty sheetmetal to prevent further rust breakouts after painting.

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Old 10-12-2008, 04:55 AM   #7
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A buddy left my rigg out in the rain after a brew out. A quick wire brush of the disassembled burners and jet cleaning with a welding tip cleaner and it was fine. There is not a paint made yet that will last on burners, Unless you wanted to spend the bucks to have them ceramic coated. My burners are $8 each, I'm willing to replace all three every two years when they go bad.

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Old 10-12-2008, 04:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beerthirty View Post
A buddy left my rigg out in the rain after a brew out. A quick wire brush of the disassembled burners and jet cleaning with a welding tip cleaner and it was fine. There is not a paint made yet that will last on burners, Unless you wanted to spend the bucks to have them ceramic coated. My burners are $8 each, I'm willing to replace all three every two years when they go bad.
+1

These things are made to get very hot quickly, which means they cool quickly. Any treatment/finish will be difficult, if not impossible, to maintain.

But a 99¢ wire brush and 10 minutes will take care of it.
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Old 10-13-2008, 03:05 PM   #9
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I can suggest soaking the burner in molasses mixed with water. Yes, molasses 1 part to 4-10 parts water (the ratio isn't all that important). A week or two, depending on how think the rust is, will dissolve the rust. A quick scrub with a wire brush to remove the residue and it will be cleaned.

Also, you can make a rust removing device out of a battery charger (preferrably not a self-adjusting charger) and a bucket of water with Arm-and-Hammer washing soda. What you would do is create a 'reverse plating' system where the iron oxide is expelled from the iron, and moves toward the sacrificial element (steel plate). It's called electrolysis, and can be effective in minutes, and likely your rust will be gone within on hour or two.

Yes, I'm sure that many of you are laughing right now, but these are proven to work. The molasses is slow but cheap (if you buy the molasses at the local grain elevator by the gallon) and is completley biodegradeable.

The electrolysis method is much faster, but can really only be used on iron, steel, etc. Aluminum will not withstand the process, so don't put it in there. Actually, the aluminum in molasses is also a bad idea, after some time it too will dissolve (at least the zinc-die-cast parts I tried did.) Also there is the standard risk of doing anything electrical around water, but try not to dunk the charger into the bucket. Also, the washing soda creates a caustic solution which you should be careful of, and you don't want to use stainless steel for sacrificial element, as it WILL give off dangerous chromate fumes. OH, that reminds me, the electrolysis method will generate some Hydrogen fumes, so do this in an open or well ventilated area.

Use these methods only if you can remove everything except the actual iron part.

Check it out at:My Website. There are other sites that have info on these methods as well.

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Old 10-13-2008, 03:12 PM   #10
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Oh, I forgot to mention that when using the electrolysis method, you will need to make sure that the rusty part has a direct path to the sacrificial element, or the rust will not remove. It won't work around corners... You may have to do half, then turn the part around.

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