Moderator Post (s) for this thread: >Watch this postbyHandyman on 09/21/2009
This bit of tool restorer's alchemy may be what you're looking for:
Wire brushing is too harsh for fine tools that have only a slight surface coating of rust. One method that works gently is to soak them in a saturated solution of ordinary table salt in white vinegar (mix salt in vinegar until no more will dissolve)– acetic acid (vinegar) and salt form a dilute solution of hydrochloric acid. Be sure the tool is fully immersed and let it sit overnight. It doesn't strip off any measurable amount of metal but it will take off the rust and leave a clean surface. Rinse well to remove the rest of the vinegar, dry thoroughly, and oil to prevent recurrence of rust.