Plastic or rubber contaminating coolant, need prevention.
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  1. #1
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    Default Plastic or rubber contaminating coolant, need prevention.

    We do a lot of PM on our coolant , use coalasers, keep tanks filled and the concentration correct.Been using Qualichem Xtreme Cut 251C which we are otherwise happy with. We do a few jobs cutting UHMW and Urethane (not using coolant) but the chips get into the coolant through the conveyor. Some just fall through the conveyor and some stick to it and drop off the bottom side into the coolant. I'm either going to make some sheet metal covers to prevent the chips from ever getting into the conveyor or have thought about something like this:
    YouTube

    If I don't use the conveyor to get chips out of the machine , I will have to scoop / vacuum out the machine, but it will keep my coolant from getting plastic in it. If i use something like is in this video, I still may get chip in the coolant (around or through the conveyor). Wondering what others do that cut a lot of plastic or rubber? It really seem to do a number on the coolant, much quicker than steel or aluminum chips.

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    I have ran a lot of uhmw over the years and just make some simple plywood covers to keep the chips inside the machine and scoop them out with a plastic dustpan ,,, once they get wet they stick to everything and turn your coolant into soup ...

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    UHMW sucks in a lathe. we cut 5000+ round 7" dia 6.5" long pucks down to 2.5" dia 6.250 long with a face. part ran fast the problem was the chips. 5 min cycle time per part including pull out time for chips. I tried everything and every "BEST" insert even tried pecking the the cuts. about 200 parts into the Job I said F-it through it on the mill. parts ended up taking about under 3 mins but it ran 2 on the 1st op and ran 2 on the second in under 3 mins. 2 o.d dias had 2 blind counter one each side bores tapped hole. we used a .750 dia rad tool for the rads also.
    Chip conveyors dont have a problem chips dont wrap up either was oen of the best paying jobs in the shop and anybody could run it.

    I love to run plastic in coolant machines with coolant on for one thing it takes the tramp oil out(it also takes out the coolant but not as much as the oil). I dont think I have ever run plastic dry, being UHMW Nylon delrin etc etc

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    I let it fill up then scoop/vacuum it out, it's time consuming.

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    Ha-ha... that lathe shot is precious! Poor thing.

    I've also done a lot of various plastics over the years. Mostly on machines without conveyors but certainly coolant tanks. I pull the tanks out and either let the chips fall on the floor to be swept or vacuumed up or put shallow cardboard boxes in their place. I can't imagine clearing a machine completely of plastic chips without brooming or vacuuming it out. The stuff has the remarkable ability to stick to any surface.

    I recently got a lathe with a conveyor and can see that pulling the coolant tank out by a little more then the width of the conveyor will keep the plastic out of the tank. If you can do that, then run the conveyor during the job if you need, and once finished, plan on having someone stand there at the end of the conveyor with a brush and shop vac for at least one full revolution of the track while brushing and vacuuming it off. Making sure your scrapers are not worn out on the conveyor track will help leave the least amount of plastic behind. You're likely going to have to vacuum out the machine anyway. In general I just don't think there are many easy ways to automate the cleanup of plastics.

    Not as bad or a deal breaker, but kind of like red/yellow metals and cast iron with their either tenacious or abrasive chips. No thanks. Won't run either of them. It's like they're capable of osmosis because of how the chips find their way into impossible places. Osmosis seems to be the only answer. :-)

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    I cut a lot of UHMW and other plastics. I had a few layers of cheesecloth on the conveyor and then scooped/vacuumed it out when done. Then tossed the cheesecloth.

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    I don't cut as much plastic as you guys by the looks of it, but I do cut some and I *hate* it because of how it static clings to every surface in the machine...

    One thing I have wondered about is using one of the 'anti static' air guns that McMaster sells. My understanding is they use ionized air to neutralize the charge. In a mill one of those in combination with a vacuum cleaner or dust collector seems like it has the potential to keep the chips under control. I haven't tried it yet though as the anti-static blow guns are expensive...

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    Quote Originally Posted by aarongough View Post
    I don't cut as much plastic as you guys by the looks of it, but I do cut some and I *hate* it because of how it static clings to every surface in the machine...

    One thing I have wondered about is using one of the 'anti static' air guns that McMaster sells. My understanding is they use ionized air to neutralize the charge. In a mill one of those in combination with a vacuum cleaner or dust collector seems like it has the potential to keep the chips under control. I haven't tried it yet though as the anti-static blow guns are expensive...
    Anti static as it will not fry electronics when blowing on them or it actually is a static eliminator?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jmaks View Post
    Anti static as it will not fry electronics when blowing on them or it actually is a static eliminator?
    Static eliminator is my understanding: McMaster-Carr

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    we made a frame with screen to hold filter paper, just pull up the paper and toss and replace, coolant runs right through. keeps most of it out. used it most on vmc when running cast iron.

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    With an Exair Chip Trapper it takes about 10 minutes to completely empty your coolant tank, filter the chips out, and return to the sump.
    We run a lot of Acetal and ABS. It has been a game changer. It can even be used as a vacuum(not powerful) to get chips directly out of the machine.
    It uses bag style filters down to 1 micron. We use 25 micron on the mills most of the time, 5 micron on surface grinder, and down to 1 micron on the EDM tank.
    Wash the drum and bag out, leave the top open to dry, and it is ready to go next time. Takes about 15 minutes to maintain, but if you clean 5 sumps in a couple of hours it is well worth it.
    My only regret is not buying the high lift version that they offer.
    Pricey, but ROI is pretty fast if you have several machines to maintain.

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    I kinda miss understood this posts when I replied, I thoguht you were asking how to keep the UHMW from getting wrapped up in the chip conveyor. UHMW just doesnt break a chip on a lathe hence why I mentioned we mill it.
    sorry about that.
    but as far as delrin teflon and others I always cut wet, it floats so it does skim right off the coolant tanks and like I said it takes tramp oils out.

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    I'm constantly switching materials, but don't do anything special with plastics
    . Just run them with coolant into the chip bin, and shovel as needed. I hate UHMW for all the stringiness, but haven't noticed it causing problem with coolant. UHMW,Acetal,Ultem,PEEK,HDPE and various IGUS formulations. Using Trim 685.


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  17. #14
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    Is there a coolant designed for plastics? I run about 80% acetal nd HDPE.
    Michael


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