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Magnum164
12-22-2010, 08:13 AM
I have some very small parts about 6mm SQ by 23mm Long. To get a good finish I left them in a tumbler with walnuts. Trying to avoid polishing each individual piece, now I find myself having to chisel out walnut crude out of the 3mm tapped holes.

is there a way I can dissolve the walnut without hurting the aluminum? also is there a way to prevent this in the future? Packing the threads with something that can wash out?

MotorradMike
12-22-2010, 08:22 AM
Could you put screws in the holes?

JoeLee
12-22-2010, 08:24 AM
Just wondering what size walnut media you use. I've never really found it to be a big problem unless your media is damp. A shot of compressed air should clean the hole out. Also try a smaller size media. Or just plug the hole.

JL..............

gary350
12-22-2010, 08:50 AM
In the future use RICE instead of walnuts. I buy the cheapest dry rice that Kroger has. Rice does a faster better job than walnuts.

Sodium Hydroxide will remove the walnuts but I don't remember it is will affect aluminum or not. Buy some Drano make sure it says Sodium Hydroxide on the bottle.

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 08:55 AM
Could you put screws in the holes?

That is what I am doing now. But not all are thru holes, so it is compact. Plus I have 40 parts and that kills my carpal tunnel:)

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 08:57 AM
Just wondering what size walnut media you use. I've never really found it to be a big problem unless your media is damp. A shot of compressed air should clean the hole out. Also try a smaller size media. Or just plug the hole.

JL..............

I am using TurNut you use for cleaning gun brass. While the media is not damp, it does have Tru-brite on it. If I could find something useful to plug them with that would not come out.

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 08:58 AM
In the future use RICE instead of walnuts. I buy the cheapest dry rice that Kroger has. Rice does a faster better job than walnuts.

Sodium Hydroxide will remove the walnuts but I don't remember it is will affect aluminum or not. Buy some Drano make sure it says Sodium Hydroxide on the bottle.


Rice? Hmm never heard of using that, but hey if it works and cheaper than Walnuts I'll give it a try. That would be big enough to stay out of the holes - I think.

SGW
12-22-2010, 09:25 AM
DON"T use sodium hydroxide with aluminum. It will react in spectacular fashion.

JoeFin
12-22-2010, 09:29 AM
You mean it is packed in so tight High Pressure AIR won't blow them out ?

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 09:51 AM
You mean it is packed in so tight High Pressure AIR won't blow them out ?

Haven't tried, not sure I have a high pressure nozzle, don't use air much anymore, but the parts are so small the air would probably blow the parts out of my hand:)

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 09:53 AM
DON"T use sodium hydroxide with aluminum. It will react in spectacular fashion.

I think I remember doing something like this in my high school lab:)

vincemulhollon
12-22-2010, 10:04 AM
Sodium Hydroxide will remove the walnuts but I don't remember it is will affect aluminum or not.

That will dissolve it. Alkalies in iron, acids in aluminum.

Simplest way is to bake it in ye old kitchen oven. Self clean cycle, up close to a heating element, will melt the aluminum, as I have discovered. An average of 700 degrees or whatever in a self clean cycle seems to mean a minimum of 700 not a max.

Literally leave it in the oven for a couple weeks cooking. Then you get to degrease it with brake cleaner (not oven degreaser, which again, will dissolve the aluminum).

dishwasher detergent will also discolor or damage aluminum after awhile, as I have also discovered the hard way. But the dishwasher is a heck of a good way to clean stainless parts.

One guy at work told me to leave the part on top of an anthill and the ants will go to great effort to bite packed walnut shell or rice out of a packed hole but I think he is completely full of it. Maybe the rice, maybe.

Next time get those birthday candles and drip the threaded holes full of wax and then purchase a new 1 qt kitchen pot for the houses cook, after a trip thru the vibratory finisher barrel, take the old pot, fill with boiling water, and do the obvious. I would not reuse that pot for food purposes, not even for making waxy tea. You'll probably need a squirt of brake cleaner or degreaser tank if you're that wealthy.

I like filling drilled holes with wax and then tapping them clean, so I'm already fooling around with fire and candles when I'm tapping, anyway, now I'm just filling the freshly tapped hole back up again with wax. Doesn't take all that long.

If the wax gets eaten out of the hole and the hole gets packed, then you're doing something wrong, use a rougher cutter for a shorter time or something. Like walnut shells mixed with a much coarser polish.

An entirely different clown at work told me to try styrofoam peanuts with rogue in a vib tumber, he is also generally full of it, then again styrofoam is easy to dissolve, so if by some miracle it actually works...

More so than any other machining process, vibratory tumbling seems to attract really weird ideas and beliefs. Somebody should write a magazine article about it, I'd like to read it.

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 10:18 AM
That will dissolve it. Alkalies in iron, acids in aluminum.

Simplest way is to bake it in ye old kitchen oven. Self clean cycle, up close to a heating element, will melt the aluminum, as I have discovered. An average of 700 degrees or whatever in a self clean cycle seems to mean a minimum of 700 not a max.

Literally leave it in the oven for a couple weeks cooking. Then you get to degrease it with brake cleaner (not oven degreaser, which again, will dissolve the aluminum).


Seriously? Leave the part in a 700Deg oven for a week? Not only would I have one heck of an electric bill, but I would have warped parts as well.

That's also about 4 times longer than it took to make the parts.

i do like the idea of wax or something easily dissolved.

Dr Stan
12-22-2010, 10:23 AM
Plus I have 40 parts and that kills my carpal tunnel:)

Have the carpal tunnel surgery. I've had both wrists done and it sure improved my life not having the pain. BTW, it was quite interesting to hold a conversation with my surgeon as he preformed one of the surgeries. :D

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 10:33 AM
Have the carpal tunnel surgery. I've had both wrists done and it sure improved my life not having the pain. BTW, it was quite interesting to hold a conversation with my surgeon as he preformed one of the surgeries. :D

Actually, it's due to c5-c6 degeneration, had a fusion 10 years ago and it didn't help. Now trying to avoid surgery in c6-c7 (I think). They won't do the CT surgery due to the nerve damage. And no, I did not talk my surgeons during the fusion surgery:)

Deepest_Valley
12-22-2010, 10:43 AM
In the future use RICE instead of walnuts. I buy the cheapest dry rice that Kroger has. Rice does a faster better job than walnuts.

Sodium Hydroxide will remove the walnuts but I don't remember it is will affect aluminum or not. Buy some Drano make sure it says Sodium Hydroxide on the bottle.
DO NOT USE SODIUM HYDROXIDE ON ALUMINUM!!! It works the same as acid and generates hydrogen gas.

Max
Chemist (retired)

Metalmelter
12-22-2010, 11:33 AM
I would be tempted to try a gentle cleansing agent in an ultrasonic cleaner. The walnut just might loosen up a fall out on its own ;)

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 12:08 PM
I would be tempted to try a gentle cleansing agent in an ultrasonic cleaner. The walnut just might loosen up a fall out on its own ;)


Actually I put some rice in the tumbler and turned it back on for a while. Just checked and it looks like it may be dropping out some. Two or three parts had threads clear now.

I like the rice idea. easier to see the parts and it seems they may not come out all covered in walnut dust.

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 12:09 PM
I would be tempted to try a gentle cleansing agent in an ultrasonic cleaner. The walnut just might loosen up a fall out on its own ;)


BTW... 73's KD4VCU

vincemulhollon
12-22-2010, 12:26 PM
Seriously? Leave the part in a 700Deg oven for a week? Not only would I have one heck of an electric bill, but I would have warped parts as well.

No no no. Self clean won't work because its too uncontrolled and will overheat and warp and even melt if laid near a heating element.

I mean just throw the thing in the oven, do yer usual pizza burning, beef roast roasting, and cookie baking for a week, pull the parts same day next week, I bet the shell material will be crusty crumbly and fall right out the hole. I suppose in a big hurry you could waste some electricity and just run the oven at 425 for a couple hours with nothing else in it.

I suppose it depends a lot on how much you use your oven for normal cooking... if yer strictly a mac -n- cheese and tv dinner kind of guy then placing it an oven that is never turned on won't do very much...

The 700 degree oven for a week does bring forth a strange idea about home case hardening... A self clean cycle might be hot enough leaning right up against a heating element to pull it off.

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 12:40 PM
No no no. Self clean won't work because its too uncontrolled and will overheat and warp and even melt if laid near a heating element.

I mean just throw the thing in the oven, do yer usual pizza burning, beef roast roasting, and cookie baking for a week, pull the parts same day next week, I bet the shell material will be crusty crumbly and fall right out the hole. I suppose in a big hurry you could waste some electricity and just run the oven at 425 for a couple hours with nothing else in it.

I suppose it depends a lot on how much you use your oven for normal cooking... if yer strictly a mac -n- cheese and tv dinner kind of guy then placing it an oven that is never turned on won't do very much...

The 700 degree oven for a week does bring forth a strange idea about home case hardening... A self clean cycle might be hot enough leaning right up against a heating element to pull it off.

OK. I follow you, but these parts were cut with flood coolant and grease for tapping. I wouldn't want to put them in the same oven with my food.

Metalmelter
12-22-2010, 03:06 PM
BTW... 73's KD4VCU

Thanks and Happy Holidays !!!

DeereGuy
12-22-2010, 03:49 PM
OK. I follow you, but these parts were cut with flood coolant and grease for tapping. I wouldn't want to put them in the same oven with my food.

Magnum, I have had this problem in the past and totally solved it by careful use of hot glue in the holes and then boil the part. The glue will come right out and float to the top. I have been using this method to keep threaded holes from being anodized.

Magnum164
12-22-2010, 04:23 PM
Magnum, I have had this problem in the past and totally solved it by careful use of hot glue in the holes and then boil the part. The glue will come right out and float to the top. I have been using this method to keep threaded holes from being anodized.


Hot glue would probably be easier than wax. Thanks!

wierdscience
12-22-2010, 08:45 PM
In the future you might try Baking soda blast media in the tumbler.Anything that gets stuck will dissolve out with water.

fishfrnzy
12-23-2010, 12:01 AM
Deere, now theres a clever idea. I like it.

JoeLee
12-23-2010, 12:26 AM
OK, just thought I would ask, but boy this one got carried away.


JL.................

DeereGuy
12-23-2010, 05:41 AM
Deere, now theres a clever idea. I like it.

Thanks Fish...I also use rubbers stoppers from this place on occasions.

http://www.widgetco.com/