Corrosion Protection

How-to Article...

An easy and effective way to protect all you electronics, tools and more against the nasty effects of corrosion!

I have been using Corrosion X for protection of my radio box equipment for some time now. This product works great, but you have to spray it on the parts you want to protect and it leaves a very oily residue. In some cases it isn't really an issue, but other times it is.

Recently I stumbled upon the product I want to talk about in this article. It is called an Anti-Corrosion Emitter and is manufactured by a company called Cortec in the USA. The emitters are available in different sizes and shapes.

Placed in any enclosed space, these emitters provide continuous corrosion protection for up to two years, even on odd-shaped parts or difficult-to-reach areas. They give off a harmless corrosion-inhibiting vapour that forms an invisible crystal barrier on ferrous and non-ferrous metals.

The product that I am currently using is the emitter in foam sheets. It is about 1/4" thick and comes in 10"x10" sheets. The foam can be cut to size with scissors and
1 of it will protect items in a 138 space. What I especially like about it in foam format is that you could also use it to protect your receivers against vibrations while at the same time protecting everything inside your radio box against corrosion.

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I contacted the manufacturer and explained to them that I intended to try their product to protect components inside R/C boat radio boxes and inquired about the effect of water on the foam (since we all know that sooner or later, water does get inside our radio boxes). Here is what they replied.

We do not consider our VCI 130 series foam as a cushioning product. It is
used as a convenient "carrier" for the vci inhibitors. Consider the foam as
a delivery substrate.
It is 1/4 inch open cell polyurethane. If soaked in water I believe the
dried inhibitor solution will leach out and possibly stain or discolour the
metal/board's surface. This is not destructive, only a discoloration. I
don’t see any need in your case to worry. We do recommend for electronics
using either one of our emitter products VCI 101 (1 cu ft) should be plenty
adequate or VCI 238 aerosol. While this may be seen as an oily film, in the
case of 238, "less is best". We are not trying to film coat the metal
surface, only "fume" the board. Too much gets nothing extra done.
Using the 130 series foam as a cushion, if it is sufficiently cushy, will
serve the dual purpose of emitting vci vapours as well as cushioning, but if
soaked, we can only suggest trying it yourself to find out how it meets your
particular needs.

Although the 130 series foam isn't designed for vibration dampening applications, I feel that it has many possible uses in our hobby and so I decided to give it a try. The fact that it is readily available to the average consumer and very inexpensive is appealing also.

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I decided not to use the foam for vibration dampening, but instead simply cut out small 1x1" pieces and dropped them in my radio boxes. I then sealed the boxes. It is important to note that these emitters are intended to work in sealed spaces, if you leave the boxes unsealed, the vapours will simply escape. By using only small pieces of the foam to protect each box, a 10x10" sheet should last a pretty long time! (100 pieces of 1x1" to be exact)  If you get water in your box and the foam is washed out, simply dry out the box. Cut out a new piece of foam, put it in the box and seal it up. The nice part about it is that you know your electronics and all metal components are being treated while the box is sealed with the foam in it, so even if you do get moisture in the box at a later time, the protection is already in effect.

I do not have any long term results to report yet, but I will report back during the summer on this. I currently have a piece of the anti-corrosion foam in my boats' radio boxes so that all parts stay protected during the winter. This should also ensure adequate treatment of all components so that they are all protected when I put them to use. The manufacturer states that protection of components starts within about 24hrs of installing the emitters.

* This product is not designed to remove moisture (desiccant). It is designed to protect against it.

There are many other possible uses for this product. I am using it in tool boxes, transmitter cases even in engines that are stored for long periods of time. Simply put the engine in a Ziploc bag with a piece of the foam! I think it is an interesting product and wanted to share it with all our readers. If any of you would like to try it out, it can be purchased from sources such as LeeValley Tools. Simply search for "corrosion" and you will find it immediately. If you do try it out, please report your findings as I will be doing a follow-up on this product later on and would love to have feedback from others also.

Happy Boating!


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