Machine Top Protection

For protecting saw tables and similar machine surfaces between uses, a heavy coat of paste wax works. Other suggestions are also offered in this thread. November 13, 2005

What is the best way to prevent rust on table saws, shapers, and other cast iron surfaces? I live in a somewhat humid environment and bounce back and forth between table top magic and mini wax finishing wax, with an occasional dose of top coat. Iím looking for something that keeps the rust off when machines are not in use. Are there any fresh solutions out there?

Forum Responses
(Solid Wood Machining Forum)
From contributor A:
How long is "not in use"? If you mean long term you can use the same oils the companies use when they ship the tools out. If it is short term with intent on anytime use, then use a thicker coat of butchers wax and don't rub it out. When you need the machine you rub it down and you will have a nice slippery (rust free) surface.

From the original questioner:
Yes, itís just usually a month depending on the machine. The problem with mini wax is it is easily penetrated by sweat and sometimes dust, humidity and condensation. I hope to remedy that with a new steel building and 8-1/2 ton York AC unit and central dust collection.

From contributor B:
If you shut down for half a year, douse the tops with motor oil. Otherwise, a heavy coat of unrubbed paste wax will hold you.

From contributor C:
WD40 works great too.

From contributor D:
We used a couple of products for rust prevention and removal. As a rust preventative and lubricant, we've used a product called TopSaver. It works well on tables that have little or no surface rust as a preventative. It does require some elbow grease to remove heavier rust. For rust removal and protection from recurring rust, Evapo-Rust does an excellent job. It will easily remove heavy rust and will keep it from reappearing for months. It is a water based and easy to use product. I use this product both at home and also at work on a regular basis.

From Dave Rankin, forum technical advisor:
I use Castle Thrust on my machines that are not in use. It provides a very good rust prevention and cleans easily. I would not recommend WD-40.

From the original questioner:
I have been using Top Saver, and Evaporust on a 1940 Tannewitz model Q and an old, PM 87 band saw with good results.