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Went to an estate sale and found an old 24 inch Starrett angle gauge and scale. For 5 bucks I couldn't pass it up. It cleaned up ok but I think it could be better. I do not want to scrub it with steel wool any more than I have to. Can anyone recommend something I can soak it in, or a way to clean it better?

Also, I have a cheap set of eyes and it is hard for me to read the scale. Is there a way I can "hi-light" the numbers and scale graduation markings? The finest scale is 1/64"

Thanks in advance
 

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One of the pictures seems to show a good deal of pitting on the scale. A soak in citric acid, vinegar, Evaporust, etc. is probably in order. Short of that, many simply resort to fine, wet-or-dry sandpaper (start at 220, go as high as you want to get the desired shine. Understand that the shinier the blade gets, the uglier the pits appear,
Once shined up, I have found this useful in restoring visible markings:
http://q1engravers.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=1836
 

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How do you keep the rust from coming back ?? My try square blade is always rusty... I sand it when I need to see the scale, but would like to apply something to prevent it....
 

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paste wax (S.C. Johnson's in the yellow can at the big box store is as good as any for this purpose)
+1, Johnson's Paste wax will work, also bees wax, just about any wax as long as it does not contain silicone.

If you used a wax with silicone, some trace would get onto any wood and then cause problems with staining / finishing.

I have a can of Johnson's Paste wax which is many decades old. Still going strong.
 

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To read the scale better rub chalk across the whole thing. The rub the excess off the top.

You can do the same thing with white paint, but you have to be very, very careful.

George
 
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