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Old 30-08-2014, 11:03   #16
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

Sebastian-
In the interest of compromising one's wallet with one's sound sleep...perhaps the best thing to do is to replace one section of rigging. Maybe the forestay if that is affected, since that's critical. Then have the rusty end(s) sliced off and analyzed by someone who has the skills and experience to do so. If it comes up as a cosmetic issue, save the rest of the cable along with a couple of bulldog clamps as a spare for shorter rigging. If it comes up defective, well, you've caught it before any harm was done.
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Old 30-08-2014, 11:32   #17
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

yup .. had the rigging done on my boat and saw some rust stains within 6 months. they were easily wiped away so i figured the SS (like many other things) we are getting nowdays ain't as good as it used to be
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Old 30-08-2014, 13:51   #18
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

Hello Sebastian,

I am having the same experience with rust stains on new stainless rigging wire. A year ago, before buying new wire for my boat, I queried three rigging supply sources in the U.S. and asked where they obtained their wire. Each was buying their material from KOS in Korea. A New England shop where I bought my wire said, "it is 316 and is individually strand polished. We believe this is the best wire we can provide."
A year ago I replaced two lowers on my mizzen mast and you can't tell the difference between those two wires and the rest of the rig which is over ten years old. All the wire is stained in a barber shop stripe fashion. That is, some strands/individual wires are significantly stained/rusted. This year we have been in Panama.
I replaced the standing rigging wire on my previous boat in Fiji in 2008. It rusted very quickly. When I reached Palau I brought this to the attention of Westmarine, from whom I had purchased the wire, and they sent me a complete replacement package. Actually they sent me the wire and I did the Sta lock fittings. The new wire also showed signs of rust, some individual wires more than others, within a few months.
Just sharing my experience. I certainly don't have a solution or understand why this is happening. I am ready now to install the rest of the rigging I bought a year ago. I have three different sizes, all from KOS.
I will mention that I never found a broken strand/wire, just rust stains.
Cheers, Roger
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Old 31-08-2014, 02:16   #19
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

Well, common theme seems to be that the metal wire you buy these days is of uncertain quality.... thank you very much for sharing your experiences everyone. I have the mast down for the winter so I think I can start by doing a heavy cleaning of the wires (any product recommended, or just any old stainless steel polish?). I can also open one of the sta-locs up to unlay the wire and examine a length of core. I can then even send a whole stay to a metals place here in France for analysis. Already feel myself sliding toward that gruesome decision to change this nearly new rigging sooner or later....
Isn't boat maintenance just amazing?!
Still, we just got three beautiful Atlantic crossings out of that rig, so I'm not complaining.
cheers, Sebastian
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Old 31-08-2014, 08:01   #20
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

Quote:
Originally Posted by SebastianSmith View Post

(...)

Isn't boat maintenance just amazing?!

(...)
Is it?

;-)
Cheers,
b.
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Old 31-08-2014, 08:56   #21
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

to be taken with sprinkle of bitter irony...
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Old 31-08-2014, 11:36   #22
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

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Did you wipe it down with a material which may have removed the passivating coating. 2 years after a welder did repairs on a stanchion for me, something similar happened at his work spot.
3xx series stainless steels will build the passive oxide layer in air. Contaminants on or embedded in ss are a very common cause of issues relating to pitting corrosion and rust stains.

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Old 31-08-2014, 12:09   #23
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

Think you are being a bit anal about the rust stains. SS wire is not stainless. Impurities from manufacturing, etc will leave minute bits of ferrous metal that will cause staining. Had to fight rust stains running down the hull from the external chainplates and rigging for the 10 years we sailed our old boat in the tropics. If there is wire available in 316L, it should stay bright and shiney better than 304 or plain 316. If the wire strands are getting pitted then it is another story as it's the alloyed metals not getting along well together.

One thing I did notice sitting in Papeete years ago is that the European boats SS was definitely more shiny than the US boats. That was quite a while ago so Euro sourcing may no longer be a help.

Oxalic acid will remove rust stains with minimal effort. That's what I used on the hull and rigging on our old boat. Comes in a crystalline form. Bought a 40# bag almost that many years ago that I'm still using. Just mix it up, paint or spray it on and wash off with fresh water. Many other uses for Oxalic acid like wood bleach for your teak. For smaller jobs like SS hardware use Barkeeper's Friend. It's a mild abrasive cleaner with Oxalic acid. Wipe it on, let it sit for awhile and then wipe off. Leaves everything sparkly. Just be aware that if you remove the protective oxide on the SS, it will just reform and may look worse than before. Aggressive abrading with Scotch Brite or heavy abrasive cleaners aren't the way to keep you SS looking good.
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Old 31-08-2014, 13:04   #24
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

thanks for the Oxalic acid tip. will look into that, since my first step now will be a proper cleaning and then seeing what comes next. I was wondering what was the best product to go with.

maybe i am being too 'anal' but I think what would feel really anal would be a dismasting 500 miles from shore, or 50, or 5 for that matter. I've never seen rust stripes like that on any rigging I ever had, before changing it all out two years ago, and I've not seen it on all stays simultaneously on any boat in a marina. Fair to say that something's up. As for pitting, there are indeed two or three spots in one place on one of the stays -- or at least that's what I've seen without yet having had a chance to give a full check. That may or may not be connected to the rust.

But although stainless isn't really stainless, we all know that significant stains are trying to tell us something -- maybe something important.
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Old 31-08-2014, 14:44   #25
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

I would stay away from any acid product on twisted wire. But that's just me I guess. As mentioned it could make the "repair" more corrosion prone.
If this is light surface rusting you are likely overthinking this. Just use a non abrasive product to get it off. and keep an eye out for more spots on an ongoing basis. If it's deep enough to not come off... then .. you are starting to have a problem.
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Old 31-08-2014, 14:56   #26
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

But acid (nitric acid was traditional, but I understand citric is being used now as more eco-friendly) is what is used to literally "burn out" tool steel/iron residue from tools and dies that have formed the stainless steel itself. As long as the cable is all stainless, not over a fiber core, acid is probably appropriate to re-passivate it, if that's what it needs.

Concentrated nitric isn't something to be taken lightly, but some materials are literally immune to it.
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Old 31-08-2014, 14:59   #27
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

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But acid (nitric acid was traditional, but I understand citric is being used now as more eco-friendly) is what is used to literally "burn out" tool steel/iron residue from tools and dies that have formed the stainless steel itself. As long as the cable is all stainless, not over a fiber core, acid is probably appropriate to re-passivate it, if that's what it needs.

Concentrated nitric isn't something to be taken lightly, but some materials are literally immune to it.
yes but done under very controlled circumstances and some with an electrical charge also.
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Old 02-09-2014, 22:27   #28
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

Sebastian
I see much the same on my new rigging. This was installed by a well respected shop this spring. I didn't use the boat very much before my passage down to San Diego and now after 1000nm I see these stains. I have never read anywhere that this sort of staining spells trouble. One reads about broken strands, cracked swages, etc., but not rust stains. I'm not going to worry too much about this.
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Old 03-09-2014, 00:06   #29
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

When we replaced the rigging on our previous boat the new wire seemed to initially rust the first year and look worse than what we replaced but then it eventually stopped and went away. We consulted a rigger who said it was not uncommon with new wire. Years later it looked shiny and much better than after year 1 despite several years of almost non stop cruising and a pacific crossing. The rust completely vanished after about 12 months.


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Old 03-09-2014, 00:29   #30
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Re: Rust on New Standing Rigging

thanks for your responses. it's reassuring to know I'm not the only one then. But you don't see many like this in marinas. Hopefully it will go away in the winter rains. In any case I'll be attempting a test wash and will open a sta-loc to unlay the core and see if there's rust inside as well. After that I'll see about getting an expert to take a proper look and see what happens. It's been a great forum/sounding board, so thanks everyone. cheers, Sebastian
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