Refurbishing Weber Air Horns

Does stainless steel rust?  You betcha!

Before I went shopping for one of those fancy looking stainless steel clad Weber BBQs last summer it had never crossed my mind that stainless steel, or at least certain types, could rust?

Then I started reading those “honest Abe” Amazon reviews on BBQs. Review after review were going on and on about how buyers purchasing  lifetime investments in a gorgeous looking, stainless steel clad, multi burner, whiz bang BBQs had theirs turn into “rust buckets” of sorts, after only a year or two of being stored covered and outdoors during the winter season.

So what’s that got to do with Z car parts and such?  Two things, “Weber” as in side draft DCOE carburetors  and “rust” as on stainless steel Weber air horns (ram pipes, velocity stacks, etc) let sit on a cars outdoors.  Case in point follows with a bit of illustration of 2 approaches to restoring these glorious looking trumpets to near new or better condition.

The other day I was asking myself “what kool looking classic Z parts do I have stashed away that might interest a hard core traditional Z car enthusiast?”  After going through several of the hundreds of parts storage boxes at my parts warehouse, I came upon a long forgotten acquisition of a complete set of used Weber DCOE carburetor air horns (“velocity stacks” if you prefer) with 2 sets of variable diameter venturi inserts in the package as well.  Nice, these will do the trick!

But when I laid them all out on a table for inspection, to my surprise, all of the stainless steel air horns had very visible areas of ugly surface rust both on the outside and inside that would make them look anything but impressive on a restored set of classic Weber DCOE carburetors. Air horn labeled “A”  in top photo illustrates the state the set was in after 12 years of being in dry storage!

In Part Two on this topic I’ll elaborate on several approaches I used to achieve the refurbished (B) and polished (C) results shown in photo at top of page, hopefully before November 8th ’cause the future looks a bit uncertain after that date!


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