General information about the Site

This lapidary and jewelry design community forum is dedicated to the novice, more experienced, and expert lapidaries and jewelry designers.

Forum cabochon in the Spotlight

Bob ( bobby1 ) shared this unknown druzy

Forum Jewelry Design in the Spotlight

John shared this beautiful pair of amethyst cufflinks

Forum Jewelry Design in the Spotlight

Mick B shared this stunning opal shell carving

Intarsias / Composites / Bead Making in the Spotlight

Kent shared this really nice Imperial Jasper pendant

Lapidary Related and Forum Member Shop Links

Brian Ababurko Silversmithing Classes / Rock Rollers Club

Dons Lapidary Arts

Idaho Rock Shop

Rare Rocks and Gems

Coyote Rainbow


Rocky Treasures

Talking Rocks

Fine Gem Designs

Idaho Rockman

Fine Woodwork and Lapidary

Darkstar Jewelry

DLC Gems

Teton Art Gallery

Art Cut Gems

Woman With A Torch

Lapidary Buy and Sell (Facebook Group)

Lapidary (Facebook Group)

Lapidary Equipment Marketplace (Facebook Group)

Lapidary / Gemstone Community Forum
May 22, 2019, 11:20:03 am
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
  Home Help Search Login Register  

10" Covington mods

Pages: [1]   Go Down
Author Topic: 10" Covington mods  (Read 383 times)
« on: February 21, 2012, 07:16:04 am »

Originally purchased this saw 1 year ago because I've read tons of info where 10" is the limit size where you can still run water with additive.  Oil is out of the question for me.  I've been running water with Lube Cool ever since.  Actually have gone thru 2 gallons of Lube Cool, mixed 10/1, that's 200 gallons of coolant!  Probably cut 500+ slabs, all extremely hard jasper & jasp-ag.  Purchased a 303 blade from John last April & that blade had a rough life.  Still cuts though.  Purchased another just before the holidays and I dished it trying to cut a over sized piece of jasper.  Plus the 220 grit sharpening block Covington provides with the saw wasn't up to par. 

All along I was having motor problems, running hot and rpm's slowing way down under a heavy load.  The "light duty" 4L belt was fragmenting and I never liked Covington's choice of tiny 1 1/2" pulleys, which puts a lot of strain on the belt.  Think the last gallon of Lube Cool was a bad batch because it foamed like crazy.  So I was getting pretty fed up and had to make some changes so I can sill enjoyed this wonderful hobby!

The motor spins at 1720 rpm and the original pulleys were 1 1/2" at both sides.  I'm convinced there was a little loss of motor horsepower and there was definate premature belt wear.  You don't calculate the rpms by the pulley size, instead you use the pitch diameter to where your belt type rides inside the pulley.  I installed a 2 1/2" pulley on the motor, which actually the pitch size is 2.35".  Installed a 2" on the arbor, pitch size is 1.85".  Blade speed comes to 2184, just shy of the 2290 max rpm BD says their blade can handle.  I had a spare Grainger adjustable motor base laying around and put it to good use.  I didn't like the factory motor mounting, which was only 2 bolts with little to no adjustment.  Plus this moved the tank at the edge of the mounting base and make it easier to drain. 

Here's the old 4L light duty belt Covington used.  I replaced that belt months ago with a upgraded medium duty Gates PowerRated belt, which are green in color and they can be purchased at any Napa or O'Reilly auto parts stores.  I've used them for years on diesel engines & industrial applications where other belts have failed.

I was getting tired of unplugging the clutch motor so the saw blade can finish cutting and allow the vice to settle back down.  The Covington vice does have a lot of slop in it and not much you can do about it.  Brian at Covington said to adjust the clutch way down and let it slip, it wouldn't hurt it.  Also saw the parts they use for gravity feed but they can't be installed along with the power feed in position.  So I came up with my own idea and I'm currently ordering a small pulley and make my own.  Covington's feed motor is custom made for them, set at 4 rpm at all loads plus it spins counter clock wise, opposite of everyone else.  Just to be different I guess!  It's designed to give about 5 lbs of pulling power on the vise.  Brian suggested when I make my gravity feed, run it around 3 pounds for the hard material.  He also uses a fish scale to attach to the front of the saw's base and to measure the pulling force of the motor before the clutch slips. 

Of course we've all talked about breathing the mist.  I sealed up all the cover opens with Home Depot Lexan plastic, glued in place using clear silicone.  Scuffed all the plexiglass with sand paper on the second try after the silicone came loose.  On the left side of the table, there's no lip so if the coolant foamed up, it would end up on your foot.  Siliconed some Home Depot 1" aluminum angle to keep the foam inside where it belongs.

Added a handle, like some of the competition has.

Since our dog Goober was having major medical issues lately, we figured out is was from the Lube Cool.  I had to make a quick change with not much to choose from.  Everyone was telling me to switch to oil.  NO WAY!  I purchased some RV and marine antifreeze from O'Reilly auto parts for $5 per gallon.  This is not to be confused with the automotive radiator antifreeze, which is poison.  The RV type is for potable water systems in RV's, boats, mountain cabins where they have to be winterized.  Stuff is complete safe.  I ran it straight today in my saw and so far it worked great.  No foaming but it kicked out a tiny bit more mist than the Lube Cool.  No problem because it's safe mist!  Plus it's Goober friendly!  Brian at Covington said some of their university customers use automotive antifreeze in saws as large as 35"!  He said the biggest problem is corrosion on aluminum parts but they have been doing it for 20+ years.  Recently my 303 blade was glazing over, turning brown & black at the diamond matrix.  I cut 6 large and hard jasp-ag slabs today and didn't have to sharpen the blade.  Lube Cool couldn't do that.

So I'll be doing a lot of testing with the new RV antifreeze coolant and will keep everyone posted.  Fingers are crossed, especially Goober's paws!  He doesn't want anymore visits to the vet.

Report Spam   Logged

Hero Member
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 3698

« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2012, 07:50:34 am »

Following this real close.  I am tired of draining my water (saws water not my water) every time I use it as I don't like using lube cool either.

Your like our beta site.  Keep up the good testing.

Report Spam   Logged


Of all the things I've lost..I miss my mind the most.

Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're probably right.
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2012, 09:11:06 am »

interesting ideas...
watching and taking notes ;)
Report Spam   Logged
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2015, 09:08:59 pm »

I can see this is a really old post......but ill ask for a update on the rv anti freeze anyway.Anybody got any new info to add ?
Report Spam   Logged
Hero Member
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 5569

« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2015, 06:45:16 am »

Does anyone have an idea who LarryS (a guest) is?  I must have missed this post the first time around and its really interesting.  Someday when i can get another saw, i was actually thinking of getting 2 saws, one around 10" and then one around 18".  It would be nice to use water in at least the smaller one.

Report Spam   Logged

Hero Member
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 2107

New Toy.

« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2015, 07:14:18 am »

Larry S is a personal friend of mine. He lost his dog Goober a few months ago to old age & failing health. He and his wife Diane have both been having their own medical issues. Larry just went through a major surgery, and will be laid up for a while. I'll probably hear from Larry today, and will see if he's up to doing an update on his saw.

When he can get back to rocking, Larry is the resident expert on Lavic jasper. He was out a little over a year ago and located a new deposit of the material. He's keeping the location secret for now to keep the commercial diggers out.

I'm sure that with a little prodding from me, I can get him to become active again on this forum.

Report Spam   Logged

A day spent without learning something new, is a day wasted.


Pages: [1]   Go Up
Jump to:  

Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
SMF For Free - Create your own Forum | Buy traffic for your forum/website

Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy