How to Remove Rust with Wire Wheels – Easy as Pie

Rusting is a very serious problem if you are working with metal objects. Not only does it damage the metal you are working on, but it also reduces the usefulness of your tools by reducing their durability. So you must get rid of the rust by any means necessary. The most common methods of removing rust are grinding, sanding, using a wire brush and wire wheel.

Wire wheels are pretty useful when removing rust from metal. As it is a stationary tool, you can just place it on a table and then use both your hands to twist and turn the metal object to clean it up.

So, without any further delay, let us take a look at how to remove rust with wire wheels and what its pros and cons are.

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How to Remove Rust with Wire Wheels – Follow Easy Steps

A man removing rust with wire wheels

If you know how to use a wire wheel to remove rust, your life will be much easier, especially if you are dealing with smaller pieces of metal or small metal equipment. You just have to follow the following steps to use a wire wheel to remove rust.

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1. Placing the Wire Wheel

Before using the wire wheel, you have to place it in the right place.  Place the wire wheel on a table or a sturdy surface. Because while in use, wire wheels create a lot of vibrations. So any surface that is not sturdy, will get damaged over time. Also, place the wire wheel close to an electrical outlet. As these are electronic devices, you will need to connect them to your electrical outlet for them to work.

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2. Wearing Protective Gear

Always wear proper protective gear such as protective goggles while using wire wheels. Because the wheels have bristles made of metal which can fly into your eyes while working. You don’t want to damage your eyes over a small piece of metal, or anything for that matter. Also, using gloves is recommended as your hands will be in pretty proximity to the fast-moving bristles. Your bare skin coming in contact with them can result in some pretty painful injuries.

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3. Lubing Up the Metal

Wire wheels work best when the metal being cleaned is lubed up nicely. You can use oil or primers to lube up the metal. Lubing the metal up will also make sure that the metal will be better polished after the rust removal.

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4. Using the Wheel

Now we come to the business end of the procedure. First, start your wire wheel. Then take your rusty piece of metal or equipment and press it gently against the bristles of the wheel and slowly move them in a backward and forward motion. Although the wire wheel will not get rid of 100% of the rust, it will get rid of most of it. Twist and turn the metal around the rotating wheel so that it can gain access to every single nook and cranny of the equipment or the metal piece. After a few minutes, you will find the metal to be almost completely free of any rust.

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5. Polishing the Metal

After you are done getting rid of the rust in your metal, you need to polish it to remove the swirling marks that have been left by the wire wheel. Take the rust-free metal to a polishing wheel and polish it for a few minutes to get a nice, shiny look.

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Does A Wire Wheel Damage Metal?

Yes, a wire wheel can damage the metal. If you press down on the wheel firmly with your piece of metal, it will take chunks of metal off. Also, don’t use the wheel on an edge in such a manner that the wheel turns into it. Failure to do so will damage the metal.

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Pros of Using A Wire Wheel

The wire wheels have a lot of advantages. They are:

  • It is perfect for removing rust off smaller objects.
  • You can use both your hands, which gives you more maneuverability.
  • It is a lot less rough on the metal than other methods, such as using a wire brush for rust removal.
  • It offers more stability than handheld machines such as drills and grinders.

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Cons of Using A Wire Wheel

Along with its advantages, using a wire wheel has its fair share of disadvantages as well. They are :

  • It is very heavy, so it is not portable.
  • You need a stable and sturdy base for it near a power outlet, which is not always available.
  • The machine itself is not maneuverable at all.
  • You can not work on larger pieces of metal with this.
  • The wire wheel most likely will not get rid of all the rust in the metal.

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Precautions You Need to Take While Using A Wire Wheel

As with any other power tool, you need to follow a few precautionary steps to make sure the work is done safely and perfectly. These are:

  • Always remember to wear protective goggles and gloves.
  • If you are not wearing gloves, make sure that you are keeping your hands and fingers at a safe distance from the bristles.
  • Always make sure to use a stable surface to place your wire wheel.
  • Do not press the metal too firmly onto the wire wheel.
  • Use the wheel on an edge in such a manner that the wheel rotates away from it.
  • Never exceed the RPM level of the wheel that has been mentioned on the manual of the wire wheel. Otherwise, you will burn the wheel out.

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Final Words

The last thing you want while working with metal objects is them being useless due to rust. But knowing how to remove rust with wire wheels will help you to no end in this regard. Just follow the proper instructions and precautions, and you will be able to work with equipment and other metal objects that are almost entirely free of rust.

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You May Also Like:

How to Pick A Perfect Grinding Disc for Rust Removal.

How to Remove Rust with A Wire Brush – The Easy Way.

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