International Association of Penturners - View Single Post - Cleaning Grease off New Lathe Bed
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Old 11-05-2018, 08:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Saratoga Springs, NY
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Interesting question.

Many lathes, especially those manufactured in Asia, are dressed using paints that won't withstand petroleum-based solvents that we normally think of as degreasers - gasoline, kerosene, mineral spirits, etc. So you might want to take the precaution of testing the solvent you plan to use on a hidden area on the lathe to make sure that it won't attack the paint. I tried mineral spirits when I was prepping my new lathe, and found that the paint was coming off.

So that leads me to suggest that you consider one of the more environmentally-friendly, non-petroleum solvents that are typically sold at supermarkets. I don't have any personal experience with any of these, but some of the names that come to mind are Simple Green, Howard's Clean a Finish, Meyer's Multi-Surface Cleaner, etc. And my wife swears by ordinary household vinegar.

Another possibility is WD-40. I know that's not what it was made for, but people tend to use it as a general-purpose cleaner.
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