When I'm out riding my bicycle, I'm scanning the ground for anything that might be a hazard. As a result, I often spot things that are worth picking up. In my circle of friends, these items are referred to as 'groundscore'.
On a recent ride up near Dodger Stadium, I spied a pair of needlenose pliers, circled back and picked them up.
When I got home and took a closer look, they were a bit beat up, but would be great if I cleaned them up a bit.
They had a little rust and grease on them, and the rubber grips were a bit torn up.
I cut off the grips with a knife and washed the pliers in dish soap to get as much grease and dirt off as I could. Michele told me I had toss the scrubbie I used since it was now "unacceptable" for use on our food dishes.
To get the rust off, I decided to get a little help from chemistry. I placed the pliers in a glass dish with vinegar and let the acetic acid do it's thing.
Within minutes, the weak acid was attacking the rust and breaking it down. I left it in the vinegar for about two days.
After washing the pliers off from the vinegar bath, I went to work with steel wool to remove anything else that remained and generally polished up the pliers. I put a little WD-40 into the joint to make sure no water was lurking there.
Next step was putting on new grips. I decided to use Plasti Dip, which is a simple way to coat tools or anything with a rubberized coasting easily.
I strung up the pliers from above with enough room to put the Plasti Dip can under it and simply dipped the pliers handles into the can.
I put three coats on the handles, waiting about two hours between coats. I let it dry overnight before touching it.
Here is the final result. The look great IMHO. The grips aren't as rubbery as the original ones, but they still look and feel great.
In the future, my eyes will be peeled for new groundscore tools to refurbish!