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Safely Cleaning Aluminum Horse Shoes


Q. I am a hobbyist who works with aluminum horse shoes. I have tried several methods for cleaning them and feel there must be an easier way. I have used soap and scrubbed with a steel brush, sand in a concrete mixer, aluminum polish, Nevr-Dull [affil link], and was told recently to try an acid wash. The acid wash sites look a little to dangerous for my hobby. The shoes are 99% aluminum with a small amount of lead in the top. Thanks for any suggestions. I do this to support 5 old horses.

Carol S Hublar
hobbyist - Goshen, Kentucky


A. You can use next solution:
Dissolve 30 gms of Borax [affil link] in 1 lit water.
Add a few drops of ammonia(25%).

According to Scientific American Cyclopedia of Formulas, New York 1910.( website www.thelitterbox.org/librum/i-sacof/337.gif)In this book you can find some other solutions for cleaning aluminum and other metals.

Goran Budija
- Zagreb , Croatia


Q. I am trying to make some special gifts to be given out at a wedding. I would like to take horse shoes and decorate them after they are cleaned. What would I use to clean not aluminum horse shoes but steel ones?


MaryAnn Hessels
- British Columbia, Canada

September 25, 2009

A. I weld horseshoe crafts for a side hobby, and I prefer the used horse shoes because they are so much cheaper. To clean them, soak them overnight in a bleach and water solution to remove the dirt buildup. After they are dried, you can use an angle grinder with what they call flap discs. This is very effective at making them look brand new. I am wanting to try to clean them with a wire wheel on an angle grinder. I bet that would be a great way as well.

RL Robertson
- DFW, Texas

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