Monday, September 10, 2012

Coconut Oil and Delrin Plastic Shavings

I'll be starting a new generation of analog sulfur spring experiments soon.  I've now had the spring break on me three times.  The thin tubing that fits into the peristaltic pump is just too small.  Either salts build in the tube and it breaks or the pump pulls the tubing so tight that the liquid can no longer flow.  I need to use bigger tubing so I'm now machining a new tube holder for our pump.

I've lovingly named my pump "Pump 6" (any Paolo Bacigalupi fans?).  The company that makes the pump, Watson Marlow, does not sell a replacement piece to fit larger tubing into the pump.  The pumps  cost over $3,000; pretty ridiculous that they don't sell spare parts.  I went to a plastic shop and bought a block of delrin plastic.  I'm now machining it to form a tube holder which will work better for my needs.

I'm still got coconut oil and plastic shavings all over me.  We use coconut oil in the machine shop to lubricate the machines (cheap and cleans up better than traditional machine oil).  It makes a jolly good mess.

Hopefully, I'll have some updates soon on the workings (or failings) of the sulfur spring.

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