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Thread: Coolant System Tweaks and Tricks

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    Registered Donkey Hotey's Avatar
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    Coolant System Tweaks and Tricks

    I've got two ideas / questions for the Haas coolant system. I would have posted this in general machines but some aspects of these ideas might be only be applicable to Haas equipment.

    1) Filtration of fines and contaminates:
    I tend to take shallow, high speed cuts in aluminum. This produces all kinds of small particles of aluminum. I find that these make it through the 'Chip Trap' prefilter I have on the machine. They also stay suspended in the coolant and many make it past the labrynth in the coolant tank only to be recycled by the pump where they get recut on my parts. It's not good for the pump and it's not good for my parts.

    My idea is to purchase a 'whole house' water filtration system and plumb it into the pump outlet, before the washdown hose or coolant feed lines. Whirlpool sells a huge, whole house filter with a see-through case for about $60 and an inexpensive pleated cartridge for about $15 (local Lowes store).

    For drinking water, that particular cartridge doesn't look like it would do much but it looks like it would be a perfect filter for a CNC (they do offer better cartridges for drinking water but they'd probably inhibit the coolant flow).

    It could either be plumbed to only the coolant feed, the wash hose or both. It'd be an easy way to capture those fines before they get sprayed at the part and endlessley recirculated. Yeah, the stuff would go through the pump once but that would be the end of it.

    2) Automatic Shutoff Valve for the Washdown Hose:

    Again, the pump has a standard 'hose bib' thread. Every time I use the washdown hose, I am forced to shutoff all the taps in the cabinet or walk around behind the machine to shut off one of the lines (not easy to get to in my case).

    My idea here was to purchase a household sprinkler valve to switch the outlet to the coolant nozzles on and off. They do sell sprinkler valves which don't have the anti-siphon valve. That's the kind you'd need or risk it belching coolant every time the pump shuts off.

    A few plastic pipe fittings, some wire and maybe a relay and away you go. The idea is to shut off coolant flow to the spindle area any time the doors are open (or maybe when the spindle isn't running). You could open the doors after a cycle and just spray away with the washdown hose without having to shut valves off.

    Now the question is: how would you activate the valve? I was thinking of finding a 'door open' trigger somewhere on the I/O board and tying in to that logic. It seems there isn't anything 'easy' to give that signal. If I had the high intensity lighting option, that switch would be perfect to tie into the system.

    Any other tinkerers have an opinion on interfacing such a valve?

    How about the coolant filtration idea? Any pitfalls that I haven't anticipated?

    Similar Threads:
    Greg


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    How about the coolant filtration idea? Any pitfalls that I haven't anticipated?

    I put one of them on my Haas mini mill & it works great, before the locklines would
    plug up.



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    Registered Donkey Hotey's Avatar
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    Did you buy the 3-4" diameter filter or the smaller 2" diameter variety?

    How often do you have to clean / replace the element?

    Greg


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    3-4" one. Clean about every two months, I just rinse it off (but I stock extras).



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    Go through this thread, I posted a picture of what we use.

    Haas Mini Mill, chips clog up lines

    We find the filters need replacing every three to six months. One thing we did discover is that some filters are made from a synthetic materials that swells with the coolant and blocks the flow even though the filter is not clogged with particles. You may need to experiment and find out which cartridge is best.

    An open mind is a virtue...so long as all the common sense has not leaked out.


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    Registered Donkey Hotey's Avatar
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    Hey Geof, that's a great thread--exactly what I was thinking. It's good to know that somebody has already been there. I'll pick up a filter on my next Lowes run.

    My biggest concern was things like coolant flow and possibly clogging the filters from tramp oil collecting in the media and getting gummy.

    Greg


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    Be careful with the "sprinkler" valves as they require a high PSI to operate correctly. They are also very restrictive when it comes to low PSI high volume pumps.



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    Registered djr76's Avatar
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    I built a screen out of wood and some steel screen material that fit in the front of the reservoir that fit in the tray to capture any chips. It looked like a shallow box with a screen bottom. If you have an older machine, you can just take the bottom skirt off the side to access it better.

    If you got a few buck to throw around, check out this site http://www.kellerproducts.net/, they make filtration systems for metalworking fluids. I have them mounted on all my Haas machines. Im sure you can buy most of the stuff through Grainger to make essentially the same thing they have going.



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    Talking

    I went a real low buck way. I was machining plastics and I stole my wife's vegtable strainer. The screen had a fine mesh that allowed the coolant through but caught all the chips. Shame I didn't think of it before I had to unclog all my coolant lines. I also found out she wasn't real happy about it but I sure like the outcome.



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    Haas uses a strainer on the SL-10 lathe. It's about the size of a large coffey can and sits under the pump. I have the high volume pump on that machine, which looks like the standard mill pump, so it will fit your vf2. Plus I think it's stainless and it will stop the chips from entering the pump. Ocassionally I have to clean it, when I hear the pump sucking air.

    I was thinking about picking one up for my Fadal too.



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    Filtration and Wash Down System

    Hi Greg,

    Well, I finally got my new HAAS TM-1P and I am getting everything set up. I have attached a few pictures of the Filtration and Wash Down System I am hooking up to my high output 3/4 HP coolant pump. I also make a bracket to hold the filter and added some piping so that I can have more options on the coolant nozzle selection. I will post some pictures of that tomorrow when I get finished with that part of the installation.

    I have also included a strainer to catch the big stuff and the filter to catch anything else that may get through.

    John

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -p1130399a-jpg   -p1130401a-jpg   -p1130402a-jpg  


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    Registered Donkey Hotey's Avatar
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    Hey John, that looks great. So you're using a pre-strainer to keep the big chunks out of the filter cartridge? Good idea since that'll be most of it anyway. It'll save the mess of getting that big filter loose just to clean out big chunks.

    BTW: I noticed you're using a barbed fitting on the inlet. Did you look at washing machine and dishwasher hoses? They're 3/4 female hose thread on both ends.

    If you dig in the sprinkler aisle, you'll find the plastic fittings to go from 1/2 or 3/4 NPT to hose thread.

    In other words: you should be able to stub right out of the pump and the strainer with a male plastic hose nipple and connect them with a washing machine hose.

    Greg


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