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Just Don't do it, don't


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OK so here we go again, Chapter N+1 in the Robinson school of how to use general household items for vehicular maintenance and domestic strife.

So I was watching something on the goggle box about removing surface rust from complex bits of kit. There were various methods, most using chemicals (not a good idea on Health and Safety grounds), but some by physical means.

One of them seemed to involve a large rotating drum full of ceramic beads, now this got me thinking. Big mistake children, big mistake. What in the average household has a relatively large rotating drum? Two items spring to mind, the washing machine and the tumble drier.

So last night after the boss retired to bed I had a bit of an experiment. In my collection of tools there are rather too many sockets and stuff which, because of the damp garage (understatement, you actually need goggles, a snorkel and bloody flippers when it rains. It rains a lot in Northumberland) are covered in surface (and not so surface) rust. Now I don't have much in the way of ceramic beads, but I have a shed load of tiny stainless self tapers and assorted stuff like that. So gets a 5 litre plastic sample bucket with a tight fitting lid and lobs a couple of pound of assorted rusty stuff and stainless stuff in the bucket and tapes the lid down with Duct Tape and goes to explore the settings on the tumble drier and washing machine.

Washing machine settings are written in either fluent gobbledy gook or woman speak (still not sure which) and anyway involved water. Tumble drier had (yup, HAD sums it up) a "fluff" setting which seems to rotate the drum slowly in alternate directions. On a winner here, as it turns out, not. It would have worked, if you could turn the bloody heat off. Oh and it really makes a hell of a racket (helps if you are deaf as a stone). Did you know that when a 5 litre plastic sample bucket full of a couple of pounds of rusty and not rusty sharp things gets hot it breaks apart rather spectacularly ? Take my word for it, it does, with spades. Should have used the paint tin, but was trying to keep the noise down

So here I sit at bloody 1.30AM having spent the best part of three fffffing hours trying to:

A: get rid of what appears to be baked on rust on the tumble drier drum

B: convince the wife that I know what I am doing

C: desperately trying to remove all those fffffffing tiny self tappers that fit through the holes in the tumble drier drum

D: finding out that it bloody worked, if you don't count buggering up the tumble drier.

E: stop my ears from bleeding after the wife finished yelling

Still, the sofas quit comfortable...

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You know Jeff, even in my wildest nightmares I have never even considered doing that, and with you advise I'll pass on trying it :hysterical: when I stuff up I don't ever get the couch, the pooch already has claim to that, I'm lucky if I get to use his external sleeping accommodation.

I can see you being impaled on the cost of a new tumble dryer :o

However you do have me thinking that I might now have a use (other than as a garden feature) for the small second hand cement mixer that's been sitting under the lean-to for these past 5 years. :glare:

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Love it, sounded like a plan, but I gave up on B many years back ......she knows ...but puts up with me anyway LOL

I dried my plasma rope in our tumble dryier once :) ....forgot about the big F off Hook, which broke away.... :(

I say once......never been allowed near the new one :(

Women eh Huh :)

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As it happens I made a miniature version of this for my other half (she makes jewellery) using the carriage of an old printer (two rollers spaced apart with a small motor to drive them, drop a round pot or offcut of drainpipe onto the rollers, bingo) which works well. They're quite common in industry from table-top to the size of a house. Stainless bits are one media for a "rough" cleanup, there's all sorts out there in special shapes & materials, IIRC walnut husks are used for a shiny polish.

In short - go butcher an old printer, it's safer!

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You're lucky the bucket didn't melt!

[At university a friend used the halls-of-resicence laundy-room tumble-drier to dry out his extremely wet training-shoes..... which predictably melted and coated the inside of the drum with loads of blobs of sticky black rubber. The hall warden never did find the culprit but the repairs ended up costing well over £1000 - in 1981!]

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Sound to me that you simply need to make a small modification to the tumble dryer in the form of a switch for the heating element, neatly hidden round the back where Mrs Jeff won't find it....

Bloody electronic ting with a circuit board..

:hysterical: Is it bad that I knew almost exactly what you were thinking when I got to the third sentence?

Nope, great minds think alike.

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At least you can hoover up the self tappers with a magnet.....:)

Sounds like now's the time to move this dryer to the garage for more de-rusting and spoil her with a new one.


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I am afraid that you did make me laugh this morning when I read this Jeff.

It's a bit like laughing at seeing someone else fall over or something on you've been framed, but really we feel your pain!

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