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In fact, here is part of a previous post about rust treatment on steel tools:
Date: Sep. 24 2003 10:42 PM
Author: RichH (email@example.com)
Boiling in water for a moderately long time will remove surface rust and form ferrous oxide - the ''good'' rust. Add a bit of phosphoric acid to the boiling water and you will quicken the reaction. Coating with a ''rust reformer'' containing phosphoric acid is the best method of rust removal: Ospho, Naval Jelly, etc. BoatUS, WestMarine, etc. supply spray on ''rust reformers''. Any method that converts ferric oxide to ferrous oxide will work. The ferrous oxide is the ''blue'' sheen on guns, etc. used to protect against ferric oxide formation. Coke, Pepsi, etc. contain phosphoric acid but not enough to make much difference, .... unless you *boil* the part in them.
Whether this is so with stainless steel, I wouldn''t know.