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Technical Degreasing cooked on engine oil

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Roothawg, Mar 2, 2019.

  1. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 18,502

    Roothawg
    Member

    I have a bucket of 390 Caddy parts I need to clean.

    I am looking for something I can submerge them in that will start the process. This motor must have never had an oil change.

    The inside of the oil pan, valve covers and timing cover is a 1/2” thick and black as coal. It’s cooked on as well.

    I know about the molasses truck for rusty parts. Anything like that for coked up engine oil? Preferably something that won’t eat steel.

    I will probably end up doing the old easy off oven cleaner trick, but the local car wash guy doesn’t approve and it’s supposed to be like 8 degrees this week... woohoo
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
  2. D Picasso
    Joined: Mar 6, 2001
    Posts: 736

    D Picasso
    Member

    Only thing better than oven cleaner is more oven cleaner, it seems. No-Name-O spray-lye for a dollar a can ends up being a decent value.
    I've tackled some really heinous torched-on snot with a knotted-wire cup wheel in an angle grinder.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
  3. Beanscoot
    Joined: May 14, 2008
    Posts: 871

    Beanscoot
    Member

    The lye aka oven cleaner aka caustic soda's effectiveness is proportional to temperature, i.e. it will be pretty poor in freezing temperatures.
    I have had excellent success with engine blocks by filling the water jackets with hot water (from a hose attached to the bottom of my hot water tank) then spraying on the oven cleaner followed with a scrub brush and the hot water rinse.

    Needless to say, the bits of lye that are flicked onto your skin while brushing will cause discomfort.

    Another technique I have found very effective for really oily and dirty parts, and "coffee grounds" type deposits is to immerse the parts in a pail of gasoline covered up with thick poly to cut down evaporation. I take them out after a few days, without any brushing or attempt to clean. I simply let the gasoline run off as well as I can and don't try to dislodge the dirt, then let the pieces dry in the sun for a day or two.
    This treatment is quite effective to extract the oils, so when the part dries, the dirt left behind is dry and chalky and easily washes off with soap and water.

    It also does not transfer too much of the dirt into the gasoline, which is beneficial because I let it settle, then decant the clear fuel and use it in my beater truck.
     
  4. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 41,956

    squirrel
    Member

    Build a hot tank?
     
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  5. Chicken grease. Eating fried chicken always cleaned my hands off.....black when I start, clean after........where does it go?

    :D
     
  6. Beanscoot
    Joined: May 14, 2008
    Posts: 871

    Beanscoot
    Member

    I have thought about building a hot tank by cutting a hot water tank in two. They even come with heater elements.
    It would be a nasty thing to have in your backyard, though.
     
  7. rusty valley
    Joined: Oct 25, 2014
    Posts: 673

    rusty valley
    Member

    elbow grease
     
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  8. deathrowdave
    Joined: May 27, 2014
    Posts: 1,434

    deathrowdave
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from NKy

    When working we had a huge oven for burning insulation off electric cable so you could sell clean copper for top dollar . That oven would produce a new looking piece of cast iron from the rattiest look hunk of toilet trash you have ever seen in 2 hours . Oven cleaner is your friend on a warm block . Don’t do the brake clean then try heating it and breathing the fumes . It maybe your last experience with brake clean . Nasty stuff when heated .
     
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  9. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 1,941

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Here in Muskogee they used to sell “ Dynamic 100”. But they quit making it , then they replaced it with “ Camando Clean”. I use to keep a cut down barrel of this stuff, diluted with water. I would put the most greasy, caked up parts, soak them in it, at room temperature, for a couple of days, rinse them off with with the water hose and it would be ready to paint. Might try to find some of that stuff, if they still make it.



    Bones
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
  10. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 18,502

    Roothawg
    Member

    Who sells it? I have never heard of it. I heard Tractor Supply had some good stuff, but not cheap.

    I was wondering about an old electric oven? Maybe cook it at say 250 for a couple of hours?
     
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  11. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 41,956

    squirrel
    Member

    a quick google for places that sell these ovens for machine shops seems to indicate 700-800 degrees is more like what you need...???? think in terms of the self-cleaning mode of a household oven
     
  12. Truckdoctor Andy
    Joined: Jan 13, 2017
    Posts: 571

    Truckdoctor Andy
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  13. Oldioron
    Joined: Dec 12, 2018
    Posts: 511

    Oldioron
    Member

    Take them to your local machine shop and give them what they need to clean up the parts, it might be less that you think.
     
  14. deathrowdave
    Joined: May 27, 2014
    Posts: 1,434

    deathrowdave
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from NKy

    Camando Clean , I was thinkin that was laundry detergent , for the few and proud the Marines !
     
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  15. Canuck
    Joined: Jan 4, 2002
    Posts: 999

    Canuck
    Member

    Don't use oven cleaner on aluminum parts. If a part has paint on it that you want to keep, don't use it.

    Used it on a SP400 trans for about 15 min and you could see that it was starting to etch the metal, Also took all the paint off the rivited on serial number plate.

    Canuck
     
  16. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 18,502

    Roothawg
    Member

    I have been youtubing home made hot tanks. It looks doable. I will improve on their designs.
     
  17. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 2,848

    BamaMav
    Member
    from Berry, AL

    Buddy of mine bought one of those big AG tubs, I think they make round and oval ones. Used the heating element from a house water heater. Used Purple Power or something like that, put parts in tank and let sit with heat on. They come out looking nearly new. Said he was thinking about adding a aquarium pump or something like that for a bubbler to help clean even faster.
     
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  18. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 5,724

    blowby
    Member
    from Nicasio Ca

    ^^Was thinking something like this on the propane BBQ or a fire pit.
     
  19. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 41,956

    squirrel
    Member

    I was mistaken about what you wrote, you were asking if you could use an oven to keep a hot tank at 250 degrees.

    I was thinking you were asking about using an oven to bake the crap off...which is how many machine shops do it today. They run those ovens at about 700-800, and a self cleaning oven runs that or a bit hotter. I wonder if it would be feasible to use a self cleaning oven to do a few parts? I would expect it would be an old oven, near the garage...not Mom's oven in the kitchen!
     
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  20. sunbeam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,908

    sunbeam
    Member

    I use clean bright 209 in my hot tank from chemBrite works best at 180-200 degrees. Do not use on aluminum. If it is water soluble 200degrees max.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2019
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  21. fordrodsteven
    Joined: Apr 1, 2017
    Posts: 96

    fordrodsteven
    Member

    AND.. you could also use the oven for powder coating!
     
  22. RMR&C
    Joined: Dec 26, 2009
    Posts: 3,000

    RMR&C
    Member
    from NW Montana

    I have seen home made hot tanks made using a steel drum w/lid and a 115v engine block heater.
    Lye was used in them in the old days.
     
  23. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 4,095

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Start with putty knives and gasket scrapers.
     
  24. 2OLD2FAST
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 1,194

    2OLD2FAST
    Member
    from illinois

    Years ago at the old Chev garage we had a bucket full of used transmission oil , couple days would clean up grease , carbon , most anything ...
     
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  25. 28dreyer
    Joined: Jan 23, 2008
    Posts: 1,085

    28dreyer
    Member
    from Minnesota

    Recently had your exact same situation with a Ranger aircooled 6 cylinder in-line aircraft engine that hadn’t run since 1950. Full of sludge from non-detergent oils of the period like automotive engines of that period.

    There is no easy, quick solution (pun intended).

    1. Scrape out any sludge/carbon.

    2. Pressure wash at your unfriendly car wash, wife’s dishwasher, or at any automotive engine or transmission shop. This will leave you with the cooked on black oil layer.

    3. Soda blast will easily remove it.

    I bought a HF Soda blaster pressure tank type and with a 20% discount was about $75. Need to get used to and overcome it’s idiosyncrasies but you can also find a commercial Soda Blaster locally in all probability.

    The soda blast will not harm magnesium, aluminum, and probably plastics and fiberglass. It removes paint but not rust without distorting sheet metal.

    A local production engine rebuilder uses a roll through (double opening) commercial dishwasher to clean his smaller parts rather than putting them in his large upright pressure wash cabinet.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2019
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  26. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 1,941

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Let me check, to see if they still make it. My nephew used to work for the original company, his job was to mix large batches of that cleaner, he may remember the formula.



    Bones
     
  27. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 4,142

    anthony myrick
    Member
    from al

    Before I learned machine shops had hot tanks, we used oven cleaner and a pressure washer. Usually followed by using a torch to finish the job.
     
  28. VANDENPLAS
    Joined: Dec 14, 2009
    Posts: 1,648

    VANDENPLAS
    Member

    I have had had luck in the past soaking parts in Varsol for a few days.
    Then clean the part out with hot water.
     
  29. alanp561
    Joined: Oct 1, 2017
    Posts: 577

    alanp561
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I thought Bones had misspelled the name of the cleaner so I looked up www.commandoclean.com and I'm pretty sure that's not the stuff he was talking about. It might get rid of sludge though.
     
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  30. 59Tele
    Joined: Feb 5, 2016
    Posts: 120

    59Tele

    Back in '66 when I was 16 and working as a dishwasher, the chef took his lunch break and I dragged in the block, head, oil pan, crank, pistons and rods for my first car ('61 Fiat 1100) and ran them through a couple of cycles in the dishwasher. Sparkling clean, they were. The bar glasses that came after, not so much. "I dunno, Chef. Let me drain the water and try it again".
     
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