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My Kung-Fu specialty is the two section staff (Dai so ji). I noticed rececently that the three rings connecting the sections has some sort of grime (Not rust) and seems looser. Is this a problem? If so, how do I treat it?

Edit: I am afraid I lack pictures of the problem. However, I can provide an explanation. The staff has seen a great deal of usage. The grime is black and bumpy to the touch. When I perform a large swing it always feels as though it will fly off, though the it doesn't look damaged or loose, just grimy. If the problem cannot be solved, I am open to purchasing a new staff.

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    Do you have one or two photos of the problem?
    – slugster
    May 1 '16 at 6:12
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There can be a few reasons for this:

  1. It could be coated in fake chrome or even genuinely chrome plated. If the original metal looked very shiny and reflective, then that's probably what it was. In this case, if you scrape the outer material off, you'll be left with the base metal or primer paint coat. It's not rust, just kind of black or grey. It can turn powdery or flaky. The base metal might be aluminum, lead, iron, or steel.

  2. It could be grease, WD-40, or gun metal oil. They're used as lubricants to make the chains faster. And they can be used to prevent oxidation in the case of non-stainless steel. Sweat sometimes gets on stainless steel, also, and corrodes the metal finish over time, especially with grinding. That can lead to rust, which is what the gun metal oil might prevent. So what you're seeing could be that combined with dust.

  3. It could also be aluminum oxide or lead powder. If your metal rings are made of aluminum, the aluminum oxidizes and turns powdery over time. It's a strong enough metal for this purpose, and keeps your staff light. But I'd prefer stainless steel if I were you. If your metal rings are made of lead, the lead can turn into a fine black / dark gray powder also. Best to avoid any lead exposure, as it is toxic.

Hope that helps.

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