Okay, well, I tried

Yesterday, I pulled out the original 12-dent reed that had been on the 1978 Leclerc Nilus.

While it was not in horrible condition, it had one small spot, which appeared to show a bit of pitted rust, but the rest of it was just surface rust.

I had read about the wonders of Naval Jelly and decided to give it a try.

Making a bed of heavy duty aluminum foil to house the operation, I lay the reed on it, and liberally applied the product while wearing gloves.  Once I finished one side, I turned it over and worked the stuff in on the other.

After the Naval Jelly had the opportunity to do its magic, I rinsed the reed off, dried it with an old towel, and lay it in the sun to dry thoroughly.

There was actually more rust on it after this process than when I began.

Undeterred, I broke out the palm sander and went over the surface, which knocked off some of the rust.  I followed this with sanding in between the slats with 120 grit sand paper.  Unfortunately, this did not seem to make a dent (pun intended).

Here is the reed following all my efforts:

Trust me, I tried to pull the green tape off, but it disintegrated.  At best, I was able to sand some of it off.

Speaking of sand, I also contacted a sandblasting company near by to see how much they would charge me to sandblast the rust and tape off the entire thing...I have yet to hear back.

As I have a warp ready to go on the Leclerc and the present project winding down, I need a 12-dent reed to get started.

Thus, I have called this reed a loss and ordered a new one last night from the Woolery (free shipping!). Prior to ordering, I called them and discussed whether their stainless reeds were a fit for the Leclerc. They affirmed that it was.  Crossing my fingers!!

The loss of the reed is disappointing, but it clearly shows how leaving these things in barns (and other non-climate controlled areas) is NOT the way to go.

My first floor loom was a Leclerc Artisat built in 1970.  A friend of mine bought it from me, and I was able to visit them both week before last.  The Artisat is in fine condition with no rust. Her reed is pristine.  She was obviously not exposed to temperature extremes and humidity as the Nilus.

However, I could not be more pleased with the Nilus overall. She is comfortable and fun to weave on. I am very happy to have her!

Of course, the Macomber Beast may be a bit jealous of the time I am spending on the Leclerc, I will get back to her shortly.


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