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Why are wire brushes bad?

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Why are wire brushes bad? Empty Why are wire brushes bad?

Post  7Mile on Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:02 pm

I have seen many people mention not to use wire brushes to clean out their engines, why is this the case? Do they scratch the soft aluminum, or is there another reason?
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Post  ticomareado on Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:25 pm

It all depends on bristle metal, wire gauge and the metal being brushed. A special warning is in order to not use any kind of metal bristle on anodized surfaces-- i.e. the inside surface of the crankshaft bearing portion of a Bee crankcase.
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Post  Marleysky on Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:32 pm

I thought it was due to the tight tolerance that Cox was able to maintain during manufacturing that a “wire brush” cleaning of the cylinder could cause a loss of compression.
The best info I can find short term is from Paul G’s mouse racing info:

“Lastly, it is very important to keep carbon varnish off the piston and especially the cylinder walls. #000 steel wool or medium grade Scotchbrite wrapped around a small dowel wet with solvent easily removes all the carbon. This procedure takes only a minute, but really should be done before every contest to ensure peak performance. *NOTE: the Davis de- varnishing brush can also be used but be careful not to get carried away. Bob Davis recommends only a few strokes as his brush actually hones the cylinder. Used vigorously and too much can cause 'over-honing' making the piston fit too loose. Do be aware of this possibility.”

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Post  balogh on Thu Sep 05, 2019 11:41 pm

The wire brush leaves fine scratches on the soft steel cylinder wall which may help better retain the oil to lubricate and seal.. but if you push and pull the brush in and out then the longitudinal scratches will weaken the compression seal. If you apply the brush by "screwing" it in the cylinder by a circular motion the tangential scratches will not impact compression unless you overdo it.
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