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Thread: How do you clean cutting oil/coolant off of Parts?

  1. #1
    lbhsbz is offline Cast Iron
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    Default How do you clean cutting oil/coolant off of Parts?

    I'm talking about quantities...not one or pieces. I'm doing a job out of aluminum on manual machines....500 piece runs, and as the parts come off the final op, I throw them in a bucket of water with some degreaser. After all are done, I transfer to a bucket of clean water and then rinse in a wire basket before drying/packaging. Seems to work OK but wondering how real shops do it.

  2. #2
    tomwalz's Avatar
    tomwalz is offline Stainless
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    'Bout the same way.

    Cheapest, easiest, safest, most effective with smallest dollar investment. We use stainless steel bowls, colanders, etc from Goodwill, Value Village and similar.

    Lots of cleaners to choose from. I like a strong caustic cleaner generally but not for aluminum.

    Maybe warm water with agitation for better cleaning. Maybe an air knife for drying.

    We have a similar operation for carbide parts. We do batches from maybe a handful to a quart in volume. Maybe 100 parts to 10,000. mayube .25 x .125 x .100 inches to .25 x 1 x 1. We use tumbling barrels, rinse in colanders then dump on towels. The towels are Costco bath towels. We dump wet parts on them, rub them around on the towel and let them dry. We do have a shink wrap gun we use for faster drying when necessary.

    We have tried a bunch of other things and used more and different equipment in times past.

    If it was a big, ongoing project you could build a conveyor.

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    crashtestdummy is offline Hot Rolled
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    My company uses a lot of isopropyl alcohol to clean a blue dye off of non-machined parts. As a result I have lots of blue isopropyl alcohol to degrease and clean with. So I always try isopropyl alcohol first.

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    peterve is offline Titanium
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    The boss came over one day and wanted me to make a tumbling drum with holes in it in a barrel of water for cleaning small parts
    So I told him what he just described a washing machine
    We ended up using a regular washing machine
    An old top loader with a separate centrifuge We even used the centrifuge with the parts in a linnen bag
    And also the hot water helped a lott

    Peter from holland

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    Mr Bridgeport is offline Stainless
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    I was in a customers shop years ago that did a lot of aluminum manifolds. Cleaning used to be a real bottle neck as was getting all the chips out of the ports. They found that a standard household dishwasher gave them excellent results. Clean, dry and chip free parts. Just rack them up.
    Bill
    Philabuster likes this.

  6. #6
    Alloy Mcgraw is online now Stainless
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    Most of what i make gets tumbled...So a solution of choice in the tumbler cleans them quite well(I use a solution from C+m Topline). Then i just blow them off and package. Steel parts often get a light spray of "gun" oil as they come out of the tumbler and into packaging(If i'm not providing them with a finish)

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    mjk
    mjk is offline Stainless
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    Largest run I have is 1000pcs average 20-50
    For aluminum after final op and or after tumbling I started using a bathroom spray cleaner with warm water.
    I've also accumalrted a large supply of various size containers for rinsing or soaking for Goodwill
    I've snuck some parts home and run them in the diswasher.

  8. #8
    JG400 is offline Aluminum
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    Quote Originally Posted by lbhsbz View Post
    I'm talking about quantities...not one or pieces. I'm doing a job out of aluminum on manual machines....500 piece runs, and as the parts come off the final op, I throw them in a bucket of water with some degreaser. After all are done, I transfer to a bucket of clean water and then rinse in a wire basket before drying/packaging. Seems to work OK but wondering how real shops do it.
    What do you do with the contaminated water with the degreaser?

    Jake

  9. #9
    Peter Colman is offline Hot Rolled
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    After machining and draining, I put them in a container lined in newspaper. I then wash them off in 'white spirit' (turpentine substitute) then let them dry before a rinse in soapy hot water followed by air dry.
    This works for all materials and I use straight cutting oil.
    Peter

  10. #10
    matt018 is offline Plastic
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    On parts that need to be cleaned we spray the part with simple green, (you buy it in 1 gallon jugs o concentrate) and then dunk in hot water and let air dry.

  11. #11
    AndyF is offline Stainless
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    I worked in a university shop doing high vacuum stainless parts while in grad school. We would use an ultrasonic cleaner and followed that with a vapor degreaser.

  12. #12
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    oldbikerdude37 is offline Stainless
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    We had a tumble washer which would auger the parts through into baskets, it also had drawers under the drum but on top of the cleaning tank . We used a solvent similar lantern fuel. It was fun to weld on that tank. I made the drawers on bearing so you could roll hundreds of pounds of parts in and out with one finger.

    it would wash tons of parts a day if needed.
    citizen_snips likes this.

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