Step 6: Finishing Up
I would advise you to dump the remaining accelerator solution from the spray bottle and rinse the bottle and spray head well with clean water. Then spray some water through the head. This will help prevent the spring inside from rusting. You can save the solution in a jar with a plastic, not metal, top if you like, or just dump it in the toilet, flushing immediately, or in the sink, flushing it down the drain with lots of water.
Now you have several options. Be careful not to touch the surface of the rust. It is very delicate right now and powdery and can come off by rubbing. Not all of it but enough of it. You can go hang it like I did and let mother nature take over. The last picture shows the bell after a torrential downpour and subsequent drying by the sun. You can see that the color deepened from an orange color to a deeper brown color. The grain is also coarser. Or you can spray it with a fixative like acrylic or polyurethane spray. Some people recommend rubbing it with salad oil. I wouldn't, because, first, it would be messy, and second, salad oil will become gummy after a while. Mineral oil would be preferable but still messy.
And that's it. Wasn't that easy? One note. As I mentioned, my bell is made of COR-TEN steel, which is designed to rust on the surface to prevent any further rusting. Other steels are probably different in the speed at which they rust and may require more or fewer spray/dry cycles. I hope people will report their experiences in the comments section. Now that you know how it's done, go and rust something and tell us all how it came out. Have fun.