At work we are fortunate enough to be supplied with a lot of rags. These are more like hand or small bath towels and work great for dealing with grease. I'm always trying to be efficient so when I see a guy grab a fresh rag and clean off a grease gun I get pissed off. What a waste. Ya, I know its just a rag but why be wasteful? I like to use the rags in stages until they are used up and the other guys in the shop at work agree. It's the greenhorns that roll through the shop that tend to screw up the system.
Stage one of a shop rag is to use it as a napkin. Some of these things are 2
feet by 3 feet ultra soft cotton/polyester blend. I feel like a king
using this towel as a napkin. I also eat some pretty sloppy food on
occasion and a towel this size almost isn't enough. I have recently modified stage one to include cleaning my cheater glasses. Hey, it's a bitch getting old.
The next stage is to use them to wipe my dirty hands. Hey, all that
grease from my face that's now in the towel really loosens up the grunge
on my hands. These rags are usually found on my desk or toolbox. That
means I've claimed that rag as my own...go find your own rag.
Stage three rags will be found laying around open projects. They get
dirty with oil and such from engines. They continue to be stage three
rags until there is a need for a stage four rag. Stage three rags are
only used as napkins in desperate situations.
Stage four. Grease. When using a grease gun, the rag you look for is a used up stage three rag. NOT a napkin or hand rag.
Stage five is the end of the line for a shop rag. When there is a spill
to be cleaned up then a stage four rag is used to soak up the mess.
Maybe after everything is soaked up some floor dry can be used but its
not usually needed. Stage five rags are also used to wipe down
Now don't start thinkin I'm nuts. I'm not anal about this. In my mind
its just the normal life cycle of a shop rag. Kinda like jeans.
When my oldest work jeans are worn out, I replace them with my casual
jeans. These are clean, unstained pants worn outside of the work place.
Now the casual jeans are replaced with the church/fine dining/funeral
jeans. I then go out and buy a new pair of jeans to replace those. This
sounds stupid as shit but I know a lot of you out there do the same