Water-de-yucker Chemicals


#1

I’ve just changed my water supply in my cutter after not using it for a while - it’s gone all slimy and yucky and smells of old drains - eurgh!

I’ve ordered a sealed bucket to stop evaporation, but I was wondering if there was any chemicals I can put in the water to stop it stinking and going so horrible after periods of inactivity. The first to cross my mind was pool chlorine, but I’m not sure if that would work or if it would damage the silicone pipes (not sure what the actual material is).

Has anyone done this/got any suggestions?


#2

Hello Archie

I’ve heard of folks putting a small amount of Milton sterilisation fluid in with their water. I’ve also read criticism for this on other forums.

The best practice in my opinion is to start clean, use de-ionised / demineralised water / reverse osmosis (RO) / distilled water /ultra-pure water as best practice. This is essentially a water with nothing other than H2O in it.

Tap water will do though, in years of working with cutters, I’ve yet to see a calcium build up or slime actually affect a tube in a significant way. I’ve seen some pretty horrendous laser tubes in my time some black on the inside with slime, yet as long as the water was flowing, there was seemingly little significant issue with the tube. Obviously why take the risk? Most laser cutters have a flow sensor also, on the KH7050 this is a little plastic barrel, inline from the water-in on your cutter I’ve seen these damaged and fail in the “on” state from debris and slime in a water cooling system, so watch out for that.

Limit as much as possible exposure to light. I’ve seen water boxes and the hoses on chillers and coolers near windows and in conservatories go green with algae. Best thing is to regularly check your water, I do this by seeing if it reflects light back at me cleanly, if there is a dull oiling film of any sort on the water, change it out.

Let me know if this is helpful.


#3

As above sound advice. I’ve used Milton with deoionised water in a clear 80L bucket with a lid for 4 years and then my glow sensor went funny and the machine wouldn’t fire. So I used a long pipe cleaner to clean it up and it worked well after that. Now a few months after the pump stopped sucking so I took apart the pump and realised the fan bit inside had degraded and completely disintegrated in front my eyes - obvs I had a big job at the time!! So I reckon the Milton over the years had stopped the slime but degraded some parts.
Now I just use fresh tap water and I haven’t had an issue since and it’s been 3 years. The machines usually won’t fire if the waters dirty or you’ll see a reduced cutting power of the waters dirty so just blow down the pipe and rinse it through and refill. If standing for long periods drain the water and refill. I’ve worked out a system instead of wheeling 80L bucket to the tap I used a hose :slight_smile:
I’m yet to see a massive slime build up that affects the machine in such a way.
Good post!
Have fun A


#4

I was hoping to be able to put something in the water to stop the mould - but was afraid of what @Alexdubarrygurr has described with it corroding the flow sensor and pump.

That’s why I was contemplating pool chlorine as this is obviously designed to go around pumping systems… or I wonder if there’s some sort of fish tank thing that might work.

I do change the water regularly but it still gets scummy pretty quick, even though it’s kept in the shade and used a fair bit.

I used distilled water at my old workplace and it made absolutely no difference - it still got really scummy, so I’m not planning to splash (haha) any money on it over tap water.

There was quite a bit of scum coming out of the tube yesterday and a really nasty drain smell too…

I guess one option would be to keep the pump running all the time but then that’s a bit power-heavy.


#5

Try it. If it eat’s your water pump, I’ll send you a free water pump. At least we’ll know. Hopefully won’t eat your tube. Might smell a bit!