First job was to clean - using lots of very hot water and a bit of Gumption on the baked on food. A bigger job was derusting the ovens - despite my apprehension when it arrived, the Aga is actually very sound, and in fact was only showing the kind of oxidisation you would expect after being outside for a year. After I spent a few hours with a steel brush, David discovered that a wire brush attachment on a drill does a really thorough job, (but makes a BIG mess of the kitchen). Both ovens were then oiled with vegetable oil and looked, if not new, at least 100% better than before. Next we had to attend to the top: what we thought was rust was in fact years of baked-on food and flaking paint, and was removed with LOTS of elbow grease. The sides of the oven did have rust patches ( as you can see in last post's photos) which we treated with a neutraliser and then painted with a gloss enamel. We also repainted the top with a couple of coats of the old-style pot belly paint and then at John's advice I rubbed it over with a little Vaseline - apparently it's what all the 'old birds' used to use.
All this was completed just in time for John's arrival last Friday to install a flue and the gas conversion kit as well as replacing some of the parts which were beyond redemption.