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Washing Work Clothes

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Iain Downs23/02/2017 19:18:09
796 forum posts
726 photos

So. In the workshop I wear jeans and (currently two) cotton jumpers and a cotton apron.

The jeans aren't too bad, but the jumpers are greasy and the apron black (the apron's a year old now).

My Director of Cleaning is uncomfortable with the idea of even washing the apron (throw it out and buy a new one!) and I'm not sure that a standard wash will clean the rest.

Assuming that the forum members aren't universally angels producing masterpieces with nary a splash, how do you get your workshop clothes clean?

I wouldn't particularly want to put them in with my day job work shirts, but can they be cleaned in a normal wash? Will they leave a nasty deposit in the tub?

Iain

mechman4823/02/2017 19:29:33
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2935 forum posts
460 photos

I normally wear cargo pants, old polo / Tee shirts, plus a warehouse coat, SWMBO washes all in the normal wash cycle as a separate bunch... I scrupulously turn out, pick / brush empty the warehouse coat pockets of all dust, swarf etc before they go into the wash though.

George.

Chris Barry23/02/2017 19:31:03
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43 forum posts
18 photos

i wash my footplate overalls and boiler suits on the hottest wash possible with vanish stain remover powder in the was draw as well as the usual washing products.

onc done i put the washing machine n another wash without anything in it or just my workshop jeans that are worn under the overalls, then white workshirts are always fine after that.

chris

Journeyman23/02/2017 19:32:48
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1074 forum posts
210 photos

Begs the question why wear them until they get that bad. Wear them, wash them...

John

AJW23/02/2017 19:33:14
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359 forum posts
135 photos
I have all my workshop/garage gear washed on a 'grot wash'
Never comes up spotless but then it wouldn't look right if it did!

Alan
Samsaranda23/02/2017 19:51:04
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1246 forum posts
5 photos

When I served in the Air Force was posted to a desert air strip in the Middle East during the 60's and when working outside on aircraft, sometimes in near 50 degree heat, all we wore were desert boots and kd shorts, which ended up black with grease and oil. To clean the shorts we used to wash them in a bucket of aviation gasoline and then hang them up to dry, they always came up clean, hate to think what the health and safety implications would be nowadays, I know that nowadays my long suffering wife launders my working clothes from the workshop with soap powder and a liberal dose of Vanish, works for her and she is very fussy about results from the washing machine.

Peter G. Shaw23/02/2017 20:41:52
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1340 forum posts
44 photos

Wait until the boss is out for a few hours, then dump them in the washer with plenty of detergent on a hot wash.

Seems to work for me.

john swift 123/02/2017 20:58:51
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318 forum posts
183 photos

to avoid ear ache after "her indoors" spotted rusty swarf in her new washing machine

I refurbished the old washing machine that hadn't been collected and plumbed it in the outhouse

solving the brass and steel swarf problem

it no longer matters when swarf or grease occasionally makes it into the workshop machine

John

Hopper24/02/2017 00:23:00
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5505 forum posts
137 photos

Posted by Iain Downs on 23/02/2017 19:18:09:

...but the jumpers are greasy and the apron black (the apron's a year old now).

My Director of Cleaning is uncomfortable with the idea of even washing the apron (throw it out and buy a new one!) ...

Listen to the expert. Get a new apron and wash it weekly. Soak it and the other clothes in a bucket of laundry stain remover etc before putting them in the washing machine. In fact, get two new aprons so you have one to wear when the other is in the wash. Defer to the judgement of she who knows all on these matters at all times. Life goes much easier that way.

Ady124/02/2017 01:05:31
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4816 forum posts
717 photos

In many of the old pictures machinists are often wearing warehouse coats

John Stevenson24/02/2017 01:20:30
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Moderator
5068 forum posts
3 photos

I'm with Ady on this one, got roughly the same coats and roughly the same price.

 

Every third day I come home, throw everything in the washer on prewash, 90 degrees, warp 9 and go get a shower and a change. If it's not wash night then I leave the shower until later.

Remember I'm doing this for a living, not a hobby.

Later that night they go in the drier and are ready for work next day but I do have about 3 or 4 complete changes if needed. One change is always in the truck in case.

 

And an overnight bag with enough gear for three days is always packed ready in the corner of the office

Edited By John Stevenson on 24/02/2017 01:22:48

Hopper24/02/2017 04:51:01
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5505 forum posts
137 photos
Posted by Ady1 on 24/02/2017 01:05:31:

In many of the old pictures machinists are often wearing warehouse coats

Another +1 on that. I have one I use when lathing, when weather is cool enough to wear it. Very good for stopping the oil splatter etc from the lathe getting on the usual work clothes. I haven't quite gotten to wearing a collar and tie under the dustcoat like Sparey and all those old boys in the pictures though. I remember a few of the old tradesmen when I was a lad who did though.

Iain Downs24/02/2017 07:59:03
796 forum posts
726 photos

Thanks for the advice, all.

I actually bought one of those workshop coats when I started this hobby up a year and a bit ago. Unfortunately, it turns out I'm no longer 'medium' (in workshop coats, anyway) and I sent it back. The trauma was such I couldn't face buying another one.

at 9 quid, though, and now my shame has subsided, I should give it another go.

One of the challenges with washing is that my hobby time is quite sporadic. Some weeks a get 6 or 7 hours in. Others, none. so working out when to do the wash is less obvious.

Iain

Iain Downs24/02/2017 08:08:31
796 forum posts
726 photos

Ordered!

Annoyingly, I was '£11.00 away from free delivery', but Cromwell is (apart from workshop coats) so far above my price range I couldn't find anything I needed (/wanted) at a sensible price to top up...

Iain

Ady124/02/2017 08:45:02
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4816 forum posts
717 photos

A well known auction site do them for under a tenner delivered

I can't remember the colour codes they used, I think if you're an apprentice it's blue/brown and if you're qualified and important it's white

John Stevenson24/02/2017 09:09:15
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Moderator
5068 forum posts
3 photos

Mines blue to match the van wink

Roger Provins 224/02/2017 09:23:02
344 forum posts

I bought some white ones from eBay when I was still working. Now 6 years and countless washings later they are still okay and will outlast me I think. smiley

Roger

Harry Wilkes24/02/2017 10:17:21
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1217 forum posts
64 photos
Posted by 12 Bore on 23/02/2017 19:51:04:

When I served in the Air Force was posted to a desert air strip in the Middle East during the 60's and when working outside on aircraft, sometimes in near 50 degree heat, all we wore were desert boots and kd shorts, which ended up black with grease and oil. To clean the shorts we used to wash them in a bucket of aviation gasoline and then hang them up to dry, they always came up clean, hate to think what the health and safety implications would be nowadays, I know that nowadays my long suffering wife launders my working clothes from the workshop with soap powder and a liberal dose of Vanish, works for her and she is very fussy about results from the washing machine.

Many years back the last job on a Saturday morning was to 'test' the vapour degreaser this was 'tested' by hanging one's overalls in the degreaser once clean left hanging in the maintenance ready for Monday morning !

H

Brian Oldford24/02/2017 10:57:05
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686 forum posts
18 photos

Laundrette?

mechman4824/02/2017 11:11:53
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2935 forum posts
460 photos

My two are spruce green, obviously one on & one spare.

George.

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