Watching the promotional video for Trend Routing Technology’s new Tool and Bit Cleaner is a lot like seeing one of those late night infomercials but with a somewhat understated British attitude. Still, just like all those “as seen on TV” products, this one makes a lot of claims for miracle results. I was anxious to test it in the real world in a real shop.

The claims 

Trend Tool and Bit Cleaner is presented as a non-toxic, environmentally friendly alternative to all the harsh chemicals shops typically use to clean tooling. That is, of course, if they bother to clean at all.

The manufacturer says the product is biodegradable, non-toxic, and non-flammable. But at the same time, they claim the product extends tool life, removes pitch and resin build-up, and provides rust prevention and lubrication attributes. That seems like a pretty tall order for a little spray bottle.

How does it really work? 

As with most of these kinds of products, there is certainly a bit of hyperbole and some measure of exaggeration in the promotion. For example, in their video, they show a gunked-up saw blade that they spritz a bit of the cleaner on then wipe it off almost immediately, taking all the pitch and built-up sawdust right off. Well, it doesn’t work quite like that.

I tried the same technique on some old blades that were pretty fouled up. Just spritzing and wiping did take a lot of the build-up off. But soaking and a toothbrush worked lots better. Still, compared to using nasty stuff like oven cleaner to do the same job, this stuff worked surprisingly well. I tried it on a variety of saw blades and router bits, all with good results. It was pleasant to use, with no nasty smell or need for special safety precautions.

My final take is the stuff works well enough and is safe and convenient. That means I’ll likely take the time to clean bits and blades more often, which probably will extend tooling life and times between sharpenings. Even if I won’t be jumping up and down and shouting, “Wow! That’s amazing!” every time I use it, this Tool and Bit Cleaner will definitely have a regular place in my shop. For more information, visit www.trend-usa.com.

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