American Bushman

"If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing." —Benjamin Franklin

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Neat Trick

On the subject of modifying gear, I learned a new trick the other day by accident.

I was cleaning up an Ontario machete that I've used from time to time and had waxed and stored for the winter.

Instead of using warm soapy water as I normally would, I decided to try a little Bar Keeper's Friend and a green Scotchbrite sponge instead (I had been cleaning pans and had the stuff out already.)

What happened came as a bit of a shock but the results were pretty cool.

As I lightly scrubbed the flats on the machete, the black coating began to come off. I didn't notice at first but when I squeezed the sponge, the water that came out was black and there were bare metal spots on the machete that weren't there before.

Bar Keeper's Friend causes a chemical reaction that aids the cleaning process and that reaction apparently helps to remove the black coating that Ontario uses.

I thought it might be a fluke so tried it on another machete later the same day and actually got better results with it.

Both of these machetes had a highly polished edge and the BKF seems to have not only removed the coating but also put a patina on the steel.

Now I just need to polish up the edges again and then start working them to see if the patina is enough to protect the blade.

By the way, the reaction STINKS so be near a window if you can.

Thanks for reading,



At 11:17 AM, Blogger The Suburban Bushwacker said...

Bar Keepers Friend is also fantastic for cleaning ceramic hones, and makes a pretty good stropping compound


At 3:27 AM, Blogger Abo said...


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