Coolant sight gage


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Thread: Coolant sight gage

  1. #1
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    Default Coolant sight gage

    Hi, I got tired of sticking a pencil in my coolant tank to figure out the level and broke down and made a simple sight gage. It came out pretty good so I made a dozen of them and listed them on eBay. I tried to post the installation pdf but not sure if cnczone will allow it. If your interested let me know and I'll email you the file (1.5Mb). The bulkhead thru fitting is small enough so it does not interfere with anything in the tank compartment (like the door).

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=130855648889

    Thanks, Mark...

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    Member nitewatchman's Avatar
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    I bought one and it is a good kit with excellant instructions. Well thought out and executed. Just what I needed.

    We have just cleared a big job off of the 1100 so this weekend the machine gets the Series III drive upgrade and the Coolant Gauge.

    nitewatchman



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    Member GJeff's Avatar
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    Great item, I'm not surprised they're selling so fast.



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    Would love to buy one if you have more to sell. Exactly what I need.



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    I just listed my last four. I put the price back at $40, which I think is fair. If they sell I'll make another batch.

    Thanks for the interest, Mark...



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    Really nice product, at a great price. I plan on making my own because i don't own a tormach, but if i did, id purchase it!



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    Member nitewatchman's Avatar
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    Mark's gauge would work with any machine that has a coolant tank with a flat surface for the bulkhead fitting. Gauge could be mounted anywhere as long as it is at the same elevation as the fluid in the tank.

    nitewatchman



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    Excellent idea! I always seem to be low, and fear over filling - Instructions are nicely done too.

    I was all over ordering until you went from $29 to $40. Not saying its not a fair price, just saying it went from "impulse buy" to thinking about it and maybe just making my own. Maybe of you kept below the psychological barrier by saying $39

    Regardless, you should bring this up to Tormach... I recommended to them that on their blog or some other way they should have the ability for customers to submit product ideas... They could do a little promo for you and you could sell a bunch - maybe you could supply to them? Anyway, nice job.



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    I know what you mean about low coolant. I use to listen for when the pump would start to make that "I'm starting to suck air" sound and dump in two gallons. Once I got the ATC that wasn't practical anymore as more and more I leave the shop once a program has started and it's important to have all the coolant possible. One thing I didn't realize until I started the real time monitoring of fluid level with the sight gage is how much coolant pools in the Tormach mill stand because it is not angled towards the chip tray. That can be as much as two gallons if I have all my coolant nozzles open. I keep thinking about experimenting with tilting the stand slightly (As I understand it the Tormach can tolerate a small amount of being out of level) to see how much that helps. I love lots and lots of coolant.
    I also understand the price thing. My "psychological barrier" is when someone charges more for shipping than what a USPS flat rate box costs. For example if I want four TTS setscrew holders, Tormach charges a lot for UPS shipping, but If I get them from Little Machine Shop in LA they stuff them all in a $5.20 flat rate box. The end price might be the same or even a little more but I'm more likely to buy from them.

    You know, when I re-listed the gage this morning I actually entered $39.95 but then thought "that's silly, everyone knows it's really $40, especially people who work with their hands and actually make things" and then changed it to $40. Thanks for reminding me we are like everybody else.

    Thanks for the comments and interest! Mark...



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    Thanks for the feedback Mark... I also agree about the stand... when you have lots of stuff going, it seems like you could both starve the pump and when it finally all drains back, over flow? There should be some kind of tilt to the floor of the stand under the pads... seems like basic design. I had a bunch of improvement ideas I shared with Tormach (hence the feedback forum would be nice), and they gave me some good responses via email, but it would be nice to help them (and us) with product improvements (I can't help it - that's what I do for a living . Also, the way covers hold a lot of chips and coolant too. I much prefer sliding metal ones like on the pro machines, or even the Makini, but they said too expensive for that... Nice thing about those is they are an inverted v to quickly drain back the coolant. Regardless, your sight glass would be a great option for Tormach to offer.



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    Thinking about tilting the stand. Perhaps we could add a shim plate between the stand and the machine both front and back on the coolant tank side only and then relevel the machine. This would tilt the base torwards the tank.

    1/4" might make a world of difference. 1/4" per foot is all that is required for sanitary lines and coolant flows easier than the stuff that is in those. Might drive you nuts looking at an out of level stand.

    nitewatchman



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    just a thought, but what about tilting the stand just a bit the wrong way, cleaning it out really well, then pouring in some fiberglass resin or something like that, let it harden, then put the stand back flat again?
    I would think that may be somewhat nicer overall? (assuming the resin will stay stuck, not shrink, not react badly with coolant,etc)... and it may leave a smoother surface so the coolant doesn't pool, chips all slide away, etc?



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    Member nitewatchman's Avatar
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    Actually has been done and is detailed in an earlier post.

    nitewatchman



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    I have the right side of my stand 1/2" higher, unscrew the left feet, screw out the right feet... No coolant pooling also helps the table drain favor the left side, so it all works out. Only thing that should go under the mill feet between it and the stand are shims to tramm out any frame twist, as an example I have about .100" of shims under my front right (as your facing mill) foot to tramm my mill. Since its tram from factory I knew it was twist, and yep, it was.



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    Bugger they went quick and I am only in the US for a further week. Never mind if you relist them I will get mule to bring me one back and save the import duty and taxes.

    Jim



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    Oh My! I think my trial run of ten sight gages has proved successful. They all sold. I'll make another batch in the next week or so and post when I list them on eBay. I think I'll also send one to Tormach and see if there is any interest there. It seems like a big omission not having a way to check the fluid level on anything, especially a wildly fluctuating thing like CNC coolant. I think the addition of the ATC really changed the nature of the PCNC and the original components are not keeping up. Guess that's an opportunity for folks like me/us.

    Thanks for all the interest and comments! Mark...



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    Do you have a link for your device on E Bay?



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    Sold the last one this morning but I'll make some more in the next week or so. I'll post on this forum when I put them on eBay.

    Mark...



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    I was able to order one. Looking forward to getting it installed.



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    Hey mark.....

    We want one to and will keep checking back to see when you post them up for sale.



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