Table saw surface cleanup

The top of my table saw was an accidental bystander when I was staining the last project with a water-based stain. What can I safely use to remove the half-dozen small stains without damaging the cast iron top?
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TD Driver wrote:

Most thinners will remove it. I keep a can of brake cleaner handy for spills and drops of just about anything.
As for damaging the cast iron top. Am I missing something here? Are you talking about protecting some kind of top coat you put on?
To keep from damaging cast iron, you're probably safe with just about anything but thermite. :-)
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Not quite, but my guess is the OP is writing of stains. He can use paint thinner, WD40 or similar substance to remove most of the stain, but what's left is down in the iron and is going to remain there, possibly short of regrinding the surface.
Whatever he uses should be followed, as soon as the top is dry, with a thorough waxing and buffing of the top.
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On Tue, 18 Nov 2008 21:56:52 -0600, -MIKE- wrote:

You took the words right out of my mouth :-).
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"Larry Blanchard" wrote

You need to call the exterminater for those.
<rim shot, groan>
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wrote:

I got a dog, if she heard that, she'd roll over and stick her legs in the air.
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"TD Driver" wrote

You simply use mineral spirits or WD-40 as a solvent, and 0000 steel wool (or better yet, the current high tech equivalent available at most hardware stores, which lasts longer without shredding), to clean cast iron tops, then apply a product like "TopCote", or Johnson's Paste Wax in some climates, to protect them from rust and provide a slick surface.
That said, an *excellent* abrasive for cleaning cast iron surfaces are the "sand-flex" blocks made by Klingspor, but a good deal pricier than the above:
http://www.theruststore.com/Sandflex-Rust-Erase-3-Pack-P11C7.aspx
Sand-flex blocks take some elbow grease to clean a large area, but the results can be pretty spectacular. Again, use a solvent, as above, at the same time.
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To throw in yet another suggestion, I have used Empire Top Saver, original makers of TopCote. I sprayed some of the Top Saver on the TS surface and use a 3M Scotch Brite pad under a ROS to scrub the soaked surface. The once brown but smooth patina stained surface of 8+ years was restored to pretty darn shiny with little effort. Typically I keep a coat of TopCote on the surface for normal protection.
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"Leon" wrote

Have you tried Evapo-Rust on anything?
http://www.evapo-rust.com /
I have a couple of old planes, and a steel square or two, that I've been thinking about soaking in this stuff, but don't know anyone with firsthand experience on its efficacy.
Locally, it's available at O'Reilly Auto Parts.
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No
Is it expensive? It looks like some pretty easy and save to use stuff. Might be worth a test on a screw driver before using on something more expensive.
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WD-40 and synthetic steel wool(3m pads).
If you can stand the mess, a ROS with the very aggressive pads will make it go a little faster.
If it's not too bad, I just use the 3M pads with a old router push pad.
It's pretty quick and with a roll of paper towels, it's done in a few minutes.
I always use TopCote on all my iron tops after the clean up.
TD Driver wrote:

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On Wed, 19 Nov 2008 03:13:17 +0000, TD Driver wrote

If the stain is polymerizing (like acrylic or some such) and the table top is "open" and porous, you're probably hosed but superficial stains probably respond well to alcohol as much as thinners. Any damage is purely cosmetic though.
meanwhile...
Have you tried Coca Cola and steel wool?
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On Fri, 21 Nov 2008 13:40:22 +0000, Bored Borg

If the rust stain is not too deep, kerosene might remove it. Kerosene won't damage your iron top, nor your skin, but be careful about rags catching fire.
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