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Author Topic:   Cleaning Corrosion
glen e posted 07-04-2008 11:26 PM ET (US)   Profile for glen e   Send Email to glen e  
I wrote this article on cleaning corrosion in a saltwater environment because as we get more complicated electronic systems, [following the article's advice] prevents problems. I am finding that this is something that is a "scheduled maintenance" item by the owner, not the dealer.
HAPPYJIM posted 07-05-2008 12:41 AM ET (US)     Profile for HAPPYJIM  Send Email to HAPPYJIM     
All of the CRC products are great for doing battle against electrical corrosion. 12 volt DC is very susceptible to failure when even small amounts of corrosion are involved. We used it as a preventive maintenance on Coast Guard aircraft and boats 30 years ago. Everyone should have a can in their tool box for the boat. Works great on cars too.
deepwater posted 07-06-2008 08:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for deepwater  Send Email to deepwater     
the first thing i did was remove all steel screws and nuts and replaced with SS or bronze i cleaned all the surfaces and than used a dielectric grease that was 19 years ago and no yuck on my motor or under the cc
Jerry Townsend posted 07-06-2008 04:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jerry Townsend  Send Email to Jerry Townsend     
And then - the easiest and cheapest - make sure everything is clean - and then put a light coat of vasoline or grease on everything that is in contact or exposed. To really put the "corrosion clincher" on - put a piece of shrink wrap over the grease - if possible. ------------- Jerry/Idaho
jimh posted 07-08-2008 12:48 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
There are few electrical contacts that are really enhanced by the presence of any cleaning fluids. Electricity flows on conductors, usually precious metal conductors like gold or silver. Almost all sprays are not conductive. If sprays were conductive you would have to be very careful where you applied them. Most sprays are intended to displace water out of connections or remove oxidation. In a marine environment any connections ought to be designed to be water-tight to begin with. Some connections, typically those made with threaded terminals, are inherently not water-tight, and they may need help. One excellent technique is to use a painted-on coat of insulating vinyl, often sold as "liquid electrical tape."

Having worked with electrical systems and connectors for over 40 years, I have found that spraying gunk on connectors tends to become something of a self-sustaining ritual. Spray enough gunk on a connector and it goes bad, necessitating the spraying of more gunk on the connector.

In my experience, the best technique for maintaining electrical connections is to make them properly to begin with, use quality connectors, and keep the water out. Spraying gunk into the pins of multi-pin connectors is a last-resort technique, usually undertaken when there is no hope for any other remedy.

One contact cleaner that has shown some merit and that I have used is from CAIG Laboratories. It used to be called Cramolin or R-5. We used it on a lot of very sensitive electronic connectors where absolutely no contact resistance or variation could be tolerated (as in microphone pre-amplifiers with lots of gain). The product seems to have morphed to a new form, in part due to compliance with no CFC or Freon:

https://system.netsuite.com/core/media/media.nl?id=1688&c=ACCT113328& h=9740e3582550b5028453&_xt=.pdf&ck=GAteb60SAd6i-eh3& vid=GAteb60SAf2i-Zak&cktime=70317&cart=515350

Henry posted 07-08-2008 01:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for Henry  Send Email to Henry     
A friend of mine who is a marine electrician likes to use a product called "Corrosion Block" by Lear Chemical Research Corp.

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