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March 25, 2019, 11:54:32 pm
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Cleaning Nova Wheels

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Author Topic: Cleaning Nova Wheels  (Read 405 times)
Justin
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« on: March 18, 2014, 10:52:55 am »

I noticed some pretty bad scratches on finished cabs that only showed up in the polishing stage. I removed three wheels and cleaned them in soapy water with a stiff bristle plastic brush.  I put them back in use, and polished an obsidian cab. The first wheel (8000 grit) gouged it pretty bad. At least I know where the problem is now. My question is how do I clean it up? I thought I was pretty thorough the first time. Should I go back with soap and water and start over?

Justin
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lithicbeads
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2014, 10:59:02 am »

How new are the wheels ? Nova wheels when new tend to scratch . they are a top quality wheel with much diamond and a hardish matrix . This means a long break in period but also a long life  and very good value.
 Obsidian is a fairly miserable stone to sand and  polish at times. Some people who cut it a lot use a separate set of wheels for it that no other stone ever touches . Most  folks grow to consider it a stone of not great importance as it can take exorbitant amounts of time to cut and is so soft that it does not wear well in use.
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jakesrocks
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2014, 12:02:31 pm »

Buy yourself one of these jewels. 2 or 3 passes across your wheel should remove all contaminants. http://www.build.com/vermont-american-17889-na-sanding-belt-pad-cleaner/p583475?source=gg-gba-pla_583475____21407917279&s_kwcid=PTC!pla!!!42057231079!g!!21407917279!&gclid=CM_pvuTUnL0CFYY7MgoddycA2g
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A day spent without learning something new, is a day wasted.

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Justin
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2014, 01:45:16 pm »

Frank,
The wheels are two years old, and I have cut many cabs on them. It is a recent problem that I noticed when i was cutting a fire opal, and then I started to notice it on all my cabs.
And yes obsidian is a b**** to polish! Ironically enough the best polish I ever got on obsidian was with a tumbler. No polish at all just fine beach sand. I wouldn't bother with it, but I this is some nice Davis Creek with blue and gold in it. The cab that I was polishing/testing had been tumble polished.  That way when I checked it on the wheels I would know. The scratches were more like 280 scratches, and were pretty bad. I'm just relieved that I figured out which wheel it was so I can avoid it for now.

Don, thanks for the tip on the bar. I was thinking about something like that after reading how wood can be used to clean contamination. Do you think I should try using a clean piece of redwood first?

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PhilNM
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« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2014, 02:01:23 pm »

Could it be that you've just worn that wheel out??
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Debbie K
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« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2014, 02:38:05 pm »

Sometimes wheels get contaminated with coarser grit from a different wheel. Try using a hard agate with no water on the wheel and pressing down firmly. I saved one wheel this way, but not another.

Interesting about the giant erasers; I have some and would never have thought about trying them. I'll try it on the wheel I couldn't fix with the agate.

Debbie K
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jakesrocks
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« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2014, 03:10:06 pm »

Justin, those rubber cleaning blocks really do work. And if you don't press too hard, they'll last many years. I've been using the same one since 93, and still have a few years left in it.

Never tried the block of wood. It might work too. But I'd suggest using a type of wood that doesn't contain natural resin. Pine and other related woods might gunk up tour wheels with resin.

By the way, I live in a very dusty area. Before using my Genie, or my SC belts, I run the rubber cleaning block across each wheel. It may leave crumbs of rubber sticking to your wheels, but as soon as you put a stone on them the crumbs will fly off.
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A day spent without learning something new, is a day wasted.

Don

Justin
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« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2014, 03:46:01 pm »

Could it be that you've just worn that wheel out??

Not even close. I looked at the texture last night and it looks brand new.  I could however see tiny specs of white in the texture of the wheel. I think it might be carryover from the other side of the arbor which has a 280 grit wheel.
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lithicbeads
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« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2014, 03:47:01 pm »

Davis creek obsidian is very beautiful but i have never cut worse for behaving . I got about 220 scratches from a 1200 sanding wheel. Frustrating .I think the old timers used balsa.
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Justin
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« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2014, 03:48:53 pm »

Sometimes wheels get contaminated with coarser grit from a different wheel. Try using a hard agate with no water on the wheel and pressing down firmly. I saved one wheel this way, but not another.

Interesting about the giant erasers; I have some and would never have thought about trying them. I try it on the wheel I couldn't fix with the agate.

Debbie K

I think I will try this method first, then the wood. If that doesn;t work it's time to order a rubber block.
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bobby1
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« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2014, 05:09:21 pm »

I have been doing Obsidian for 35+ years (only with S/C belts) and the secret for larger areas is to sand it dry on a very well worn 80 grit belt that is loaded with Obsidian dust. Then I go to my polishing wheel.
Davis Creek

Bob
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lithicbeads
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« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2014, 05:28:56 pm »

Yes the old school and I suspect never to be beat solution . Extremely impressive work.
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Justin
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« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2014, 06:17:07 pm »

That is an impressive cab, (and polish).
I've attached two photos, one is the offending wheel, the other is the result. ouch.
If you look very carefully on the photo with the wheel you can see two white dots near the middle. I think that must be the problem.


* scratches.JPG (173.57 KB, 1280x960 - viewed 7 times.)

* wheel.jpg (207.4 KB, 768x1024 - viewed 12 times.)
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lithicbeads
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« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2014, 07:48:47 pm »

 If you have a ten power loupe maybe you can see how the problem is affixed to the wheel matrix. Those are very big scratches , I have never seen those type of scratches from the contamination I have run into . You have a very interesting and perplexing problem.
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Ajo
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« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2014, 08:03:59 am »

Did you happen to get to close to the outer edge of the polishing pad. The edge area can be a bit rough. I think I have had a similar situation happen. Eric(Ajo)
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Eric

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bobby1
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« Reply #15 on: March 19, 2014, 09:20:05 am »

Every time that I get this type of scratch (always during sanding) it is from a small chip of Obsidian that comes off because I have gotten a top  edge of the piece against the belt and the belt drags the chip across the slab/cab. I resolve it by taking a scrap of material and working it vigorously on the belt. This will dislodge the chip.
Bob
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Justin
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« Reply #16 on: March 19, 2014, 11:06:44 am »

Did you happen to get to close to the outer edge of the polishing pad. The edge area can be a bit rough. I think I have had a similar situation happen. Eric(Ajo)

You're correct it did. But I think it is doing it in the center as well. When I looked at it carefully I saw the little white specs all throughout the center of the wheel.  The odd thing is that they glimmer in the light. I don't think grit contamination would glimmer.
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Justin
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« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2014, 11:08:57 am »

Every time that I get this type of scratch (always during sanding) it is from a small chip of Obsidian that comes off because I have gotten a top  edge of the piece against the belt and the belt drags the chip across the slab/cab. I resolve it by taking a scrap of material and working it vigorously on the belt. This will dislodge the chip.
Bob

This problem has been going on for a while, and it is doing it with all types of stone. The obsidian cab was used for two purposes, one to give it a higher gloss after tubmling, and to trouble shoot. And boy did those scratches show up! Since the obsidian has been tumbled there is not edge to catch. It is nice and rounded.
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« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2014, 11:18:27 am »

  the nova wheel doesn't look like it's broken in yet
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Justin
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« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2014, 01:00:57 pm »

  the nova wheel doesn't look like it's broken in yet

Two years and 200 + cabs.
The 14k and 50k right after it look the same and they have no problems. It's well preserved because by the time a cab gets there it's rounded and smooth.   This is a new problem. It only started putting scratches on cabs a few months ago.
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PhilNM
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« Reply #20 on: March 19, 2014, 03:41:55 pm »

You can always contact the nova people for a free replacement.....
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Justin
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« Reply #21 on: March 19, 2014, 04:53:26 pm »

You can always contact the nova people for a free replacement.....

I think that's my next step. I scrubbed the &%^# out of it last night and the little specks did not come out.
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Justin
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« Reply #22 on: March 20, 2014, 01:12:13 pm »

You can always contact the nova people for a free replacement.....

Wow. That was easy. I called them expecting to have to explain and get a return authorization number or something. They just said send it back and they'll replace it if there is a problem.
Thanks!
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« Reply #23 on: March 20, 2014, 10:27:28 pm »

Diamond Pacific has excellent customer service.  They're a top notch company.   yes
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Robin

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« Reply #24 on: March 25, 2014, 08:46:35 pm »

Anyone interested in the Vermont American 17889 Sanding Belt/ Pad Cleaner -- it's available at a lower price on Amazon and it qualifies for Amazon Prime.
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