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Laser Rust Removal


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I recall something like this mentioned a few years ago on the Forum. It turned out to be fake, and the guy lost his money. However, laser rust removal devices exist, and there are a number of videos to see. I think the rub is cost (like $80,000 - $480,000). Maybe the AACA could buy one and let me use it!




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As you might have noticed in the video, they were moving the laser pretty fast along the part - to avoid melting it, though it would still take some minutes sitting in the same spot.  The hand-held 1000 W laser seemed extremely dangerous to me as some inattention might burn your buddy pretty badly as he looked on.  Even a reflection off some flat piece of metal could bounce back and burn the operator or blind him.  This is the kind of thing that needs to operate in an interlocked enclosure with laser-absorbing windows.  Laser rust removal sounds like great stuff, but a little Naval Jelly will also get the job done with a lot less risk, and it will leave a phosphate coating behind.


Full disclosure:  I did get a PhD in laser physics using a gigawatt pulse-power, picosecond pulse-width laser back in the 1970s.  One of my buddies at the university was using a 30 watt CW CO2 laser whose beam path went between two tables.  My buddy, in a thoughtless moment, walked between the two lab tables and set the back of his pants on fire.  And this with only 30 watts!    

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