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Babe Bee Restoration

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Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 2:53 pm

Ok. So, I had wanted to try my hand at restoring, polishing up a Cox engine for some time now. This has been coming on since I was jealous of seeing some here who polish up their little gems, and they looked absolutely amazing. So, recently, I found a used engine online to which I bought and the price was fair. Last week on holidays, I secured my Mothers polish. So, the other day, my engine arrived in the mail. It was completely spraypainted red at some time in its life. Nothing was masked off! Anyways, the only thing missing was a glowhead, otherwise complete. I should also mention that somtime in its life, the spring starter must have broke the tip off as they had bent a prop catch on it again. Last night I took it apart to get it ready to crock pot it for the restoration. This went without any problems. So, this morning, I put it in the pot. About 5 hours, I went outside to remove it and clean it up before bringing it in again for the procedure. Most of the red had come off, but the rest will during the polishing. It looks good overall, with the exception of the backplate. The outside was great, minus the broken mounting lug. which in the end, I was going to use JB Weld and make the fourth hole. But here is where the problem now arises. I had noticed that the inside of the tank backplate looked bad before soaking. I had thought it would soften up and come uff during the cleaning. To my surprise, it did not! It still looks like it is covered in 'barnacles'. They are very stubborn and do not want to be removed. Has anyone else ever encountered this, and how did you or would you remove them? At this point, I will start to rebuild and polish the rest of the engine, and think about the backplate. I will polish it up for 'show' for now, as I keep my eyes open for another backplate for sale, broken lugs or not. Here are a couple pictures. First is the complete disassembled engine after coming from the pot. Second picture is teh inside of the backplate.




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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  crankbndr on Sat Apr 07, 2018 3:15 pm

Boy that backplate is the worst I’ve seen! Makes you wonder what fuel was used.
I don’t know how you clean that up.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  rsv1cox on Sat Apr 07, 2018 3:34 pm

That is nasty. I have sandblasted them to good results. The only alternative that I can see considering it's condition. If you do, you will need small wires/toothpicks/needle in the holes to keep the media out, then blow out with compressed air really good.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  Marleysky on Sat Apr 07, 2018 3:41 pm

Yeah man , That one looks Nasty. Does the tank interior look as bad? Hot soak in anti-freeze see if " it"  is removable. As long as you get a good tank to backplate seal, venturi seal and the NV is clear thru the orifice it should work, it'll just look ugly, on the inside. Beauty IS only skin deep, with some Mothers and some 000 steel wool!
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  944_Jim on Sat Apr 07, 2018 4:23 pm

While I won't knock another person's experience, I would think sandblasting is a little rough for this light a material.

Owderblasting with old baking soda while be less aggressive. Only after an attempt with last month's box would I consider a more coarse material.

This may be a good time to consider a small rock tumbler. A DIY solution can be as simple as a small plastic coffee canister driven by a drill, and supported by a couple of cheesy wheels. Media can be used black beauty, baking owder or Walnut shells...even smashed, uncooked popcorn kernels.

Please share your final solution!
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  Marleysky on Sat Apr 07, 2018 4:57 pm

This is my kind of DIY parts tumbler, I’ve got my wife’s cake pan and the B&D palm sander, even the Kitty gets to contribute:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=DGT20ghWMZA
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:04 pm

crankbndr wrote:Boy that backplate is the worst I’ve seen! Makes you wonder what fuel was used.
I don’t know how you clean that up.

Yep. I was wondering that myself. What was ever in that tank to make the backplate do that?
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:07 pm

rsv1cox wrote:That is nasty.  I have sandblasted them to good results.  The only alternative that I can see considering it's condition.  If you do, you will need small wires/toothpicks/needle in the holes to keep the media out, then blow out with compressed air really good.
That was the only other thing I was possibly considering. The only thing that had stopped my thought of that was the tiny raised edge on teh outer edge for the tank to seal. I was concerned about damaging that area and not having a seal there. But seeing how you said you had done such in the past, I will reconsider it. Thanks.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:11 pm

Marleysky wrote:Yeah man , That one looks Nasty. Does the tank interior look as bad? Hot soak in anti-freeze see if " it"  is removable. As long as you get a good tank to backplate seal, venturi seal and the NV is clear thru the orifice it should work, it'll just look ugly, on the inside. Beauty IS only skin deep, with some  Mothers and some 000 steel wool!  

No, the tank and even the fuel line looked old, used, and worn, but nothing like this. These parts all sat in the crock pot of hot antifreeze for about 5 hours already, and it did not soften it up at all. Cleaning the inside of the fuel tank will be alright. Attached is a picture of inside the tank. Going to check out your DIY tumbler right away too. Thanks for the link.


Last edited by NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:17 pm

944_Jim wrote:While I won't knock another person's experience, I would think sandblasting is a little rough for this light a material.

Owderblasting with old baking soda while be less aggressive. Only after an attempt with last month's box would I consider a more coarse material.

This may be a good time to consider a small rock tumbler.  A DIY solution can be as simple as a small plastic coffee canister driven by a drill, and supported by a couple of cheesy wheels. Media can be used black beauty,  baking owder or Walnut shells...even smashed, uncooked popcorn  kernels.

Please share your final solution!

I was on the same thought of sandblasting being rough, but after reading Bobs post, I am less worried now. Powderblasting would be the best in my opinion. I like your homemade rock tumbler idea. And now that you mentioned it, I believe I have one outside somewhere which I may experiment with. But as for a final solution, a replacement will be on its way sometime this coming week, thanks to a friend. Thanks.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:40 pm

As a first time doing something like this, I also have some questions regarding polishing and prepping. I was planning on starting with 400 grit and working up to I believe 1500 grit. Does one polish between grits, or just keep sanding with progressivly finer grit then polish in the end? The other question is about the fuel tank. When polishing, do you just polish the outside of the tank and the face that bolts up to the crankcase, or do you polish ALL exterior surfaces of the fuel tank? I was going to polish them all, but was wondering about the front piece that slides into the crankcase and was not sure. I will even give the crankshaft a little polishing. I just have to find the thread on that again. Thanks for your help and time.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  KariFS on Sun Apr 08, 2018 5:39 am

I don’t think I would sandblast the backplate either. Maybe try a brass wire brush or something? The venturi sealing surface doesn’t look very good so maybe it is time to try to find a new backplate.

You don’t need to polish between the different sandpaper grits. But it is very important to clean up the surfaces so that none of the debris generated by the coarse sanding stays and messes up your fine sanding. I would skip the 400 and start with wet 800. After 1200 or 1500 you should get a nice shine with Mother’s.

I usually use just polishing paste on my engines, since I like to leave the original look on the machined surfaces, but the recent threads and pictures of mirror finishes have been an inspiration Cool I have used the wet sanding process on some motorcycle parts though. It is laborous but rather rewarding Smile

Good Luck!
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  Oldenginerod on Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:01 am

Since the backplate is already missing a mounting lug I'd be looking for a replacement backplate also. Sounds like a lot of effort to clean up an already deficient part, although I guess it makes a good test subject.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  KariFS on Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:09 am

Oh, forgot to mention that I would not sand the tank’s inside, sealing surface, nor the part of the tank that goes into the crankcase. Just to be safe... but polishing them is OK.

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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  rsv1cox on Sun Apr 08, 2018 7:25 am

NEW222 wrote:
rsv1cox wrote:That is nasty.  I have sandblasted them to good results.  The only alternative that I can see considering it's condition.  If you do, you will need small wires/toothpicks/needle in the holes to keep the media out, then blow out with compressed air really good.
That was the only other thing I was possibly considering. The only thing that had stopped my thought of that was the tiny raised edge on teh outer edge for the tank to seal. I was concerned about damaging that area and not having a seal there. But seeing how you said you had done such in the past, I will reconsider it. Thanks.

There are different types of media, soda is very forgiving. The PSI is adjustable also, no need to blast at 100 PSI when 60 will do. It gets into those cast in nooks like nothing else. Like anything, proper media blasting takes a certain level of experience.

Bob
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  getback on Sun Apr 08, 2018 9:29 am

I have seen this before and think it is corrosion from possible water , what i do is soak in Hobbies #9 for 15 mins. and scrub it with a small steel or brass brush , for the needle hole i use torch tip cleaners the smallest one will go through the passage (small hole at the air intake) then use fuel hose to blow through also check the fuel hose nipple to make sure its clear hold fingers to block off both sides of the venture (air intake) and blow with hose again through the needle hole . Hope that make any since Very Happy (( you want get it all out but make it serveable ))
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:53 am

Thanks all for the replies and suggestions. I will duplicate my post from the topic of tumbling media.

'As of last night, I decided to try a couple of things. I put the backplate in a salt and vinegar bath yesterday evening. Just a short while ago I removed it. The vinegar was very dirty looking. I rinsed it off and the white crusty stuff had looked like it disappeared. So, I rinsed it off and dried it with the ol' ladys hair drier. I then just as of 5 minutes ago, put it in my old rock tumbler with some 'kitty media'. So I will now let it run a few hours and see what it then looks like.'
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:54 am

getback wrote:I have seen this before and think it is corrosion from possible water , what i do is soak in Hobbies #9 for 15 mins. and scrub it with a small steel or brass brush , for the needle hole i use torch tip cleaners the smallest one will go through the passage (small hole at the air intake) then use fuel hose to blow through also check the fuel hose nipple to make sure its clear hold fingers to block off both sides of the venture (air intake) and blow with hose again through the needle hole .  Hope that make any since Very Happy (( you want get it all out but make it serveable ))

Thank you. It all makes sense! Appreciated.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  roddie on Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:11 pm

Hey Chancey! This has been a very interesting thread! I've been interested in "rock-tumblers" since I was a kid.. but never had one. It will be interesting to know how it works for cleaning model-engine parts.. the time it takes and the tumbling-media used.

A homemade "vibrating-bowl" type parts-cleaner (like the one in the video) looks fairly easy to make, but using a "vibrating-sander" as a means to power it, would be a bit LOUD to run for the extended periods.

A tumbler would probably get the job done fairly quickly and is a LOT quieter.

Best of luck with the restoration!
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:57 pm

Hey there roddie. Thanks for the interest. I had not ever thought of the rock tumbler until yesterday evening. I had then seen the upright ones for ammunition reloading but had never seen them work. From there, I saw what you mentioned, the homemade ones with a sander, and too, like you, thought it would be a bit noisy. It is then I realized I bought a rock tumbler at an auction sale a couple years ago and had not used it. Took a trip outside late last night and found it. So I thought I would give it a try. It too, however is a bit noisy, but it is a cheap plastic one for kids. Nowhere near the quality of a real tumbler that I had as a kid, and a lot louder.... Anywho, I used about a half cup of Purina Tidy Cat with Glade kitty litter, and this is the result of about 3 hours tumbling. I would expect if I had even used silica sand, the results would be better. I am in no rush, so I put it back in and will check later tonight, although I do not expect much more than it currently is.

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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:59 pm

I will have to guess now and say thay Eric was spot on with the thoughts of it being corrosion from possible water as it is pitted pretty bad. Now too, I would like an ultrasonic cleaner to clean things such as this after tumbling.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  Ken Cook on Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:20 pm

While you may be able to clean that part, the corrosion pitting  is so bad that it appears to me that the tank to tank back connection would be  extremely compromised. There's just so many leaks that one could experience with that part. Many times the seat for the screw heads themselves leak so bad it makes the part useless even if there's no corrosion present. Not only does the metal have pitting, it becomes extremely fragile due to the corrosion making the casting bosses fracture around the screws. The fuel nipple generally breaks off as well.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:29 pm

Thanks Ken. This was now more for an experiment than anything. But, surprising as the picture shows, the tank mounting area/ring is actually good, as is the outside of the backplate. The fuel nipple is also very well attached. But as said, it is an experiment and for testing. A replacement will be on its way.

I was rather shocked at the pitting myself.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  roddie on Sun Apr 08, 2018 7:24 pm

I wouldn't throw that part away Chancey... Laughing It may be the part you'll need to get an orphan-engine running. If the tank-seal surface looks ok.. and the fuel-nipple seems solid.. why not save it? It looks to have cleaned-up pretty well.. with the short-duration/3-hr.tumble. It may look a LOT better after a few more hours. Those pot-metal (Mazac/Zamac Huh... ) back-plates are a lot tougher than the current-production plastic ones. Re-consider rebuilding the broken mount with some JB-Weld. A well-made repair will likely be stronger than the original back-plate material.
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Re: Babe Bee Restoration

Post  NEW222 on Sun Apr 08, 2018 7:54 pm

Oh, no worries. It's not going anywhere. It has been taken out of the tumbler. Not much more happened than posted earlier. So I removed it, cleaned all the little nooks and crannies with a dental pick. Cleaned the fuel nipples for filling and fuel line attachment, as well as the needle valve hole. I will most definately be adding a JB mounting ear to it. I have a replacement coming, but will most definately keep it for when I need a spare sometime. Gotta start collecting parts sometime.....
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