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Can anyone tell me what to use in an ultrasonic cleaner? :confused: The stuff it came with did absolutely nothing :( Please Help
 

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I just picked up an ultrasonic cleaner from Harbor Freight today. At $25, it was finally time for me to get one. It has a stainless steel bowl and a plastic basket. The instructions are very sparse and they don't list any approved additives.

While the instructions say to just add lukewarm water, there is another section which states "Failure to fill the ultrasonic cleaner with water or a non-corrosive cleaning material before using will severly damage it and void the warrenty". So, obviously I can use some kind of cleaner. But what? There's no mention of acceptable additives.

I tried it today with only water. I put a couple bare AFX chassis into the basket and ran it through a couple cycles - each cycle is 3 minutes. I noticed next to nothing in terms of cleaning the electricals.

So what are these "non-corrosive" cleaners?

How long, how many 3 minute cycles, do the chassis have to be in the cleaner before it all gets loose?

Do I need to take a toothbrush to the chassis or should the crud just flake off?

I have a very old e-mail that mentions denatured alcohol as a cleaner for tough jobs. Is that a good additive?

Thanks...Joe
 

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Joe,,
I have the same cleaner.. I use Simple green in mine.. 4-5 cycles.. sometimes just a soak,, works for me..
CJ
 

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Simple green can be found at Wal Mart I believe, mix 2 parts water to one part simple green.
I have also used 409 with good results, also diluted.
If your Walmart does not have it check the hardware stores.
HTH
Keith
 

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I have an inexpensive ultrasonic cleaner, one of these (http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=3305) and I am not all than impressed with it. Once you add powerful cleaning solution then I question how much cleaning value the ultrasonic action is really providing. I still find myself still having to use a cleaning brush to get harder to dislodge crud off of things like chassis. On Wizzard chassis there is a pocket below the brushes that collects brush dust. Sure, I can use a trimmed flux brush to clean it out, but I'd expect the ultrasonic cleaner to do the job for me, and it doesn't, no matter how many repeated cycles I run it through. I still have to clean it after it's been through the ultrasonic cleaner.

I've used industrial ultrasonic cleaners that just ran with distilled water to clean (hello Joe, I'm talking antique computer stuff again!) teletype equipment. Those machines were incredible and would probably turn a slot car chassis into a blob of goo. These home units just seem to be too far on the other side of the functional scale, wimpy wimpy wimpy. No doubt that the much higher priced, industrial strength looking ones, like this (http://www.bluewaveinc.com/tu.htm), would do a better job.
 

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This was posted on the ho-slotcars mailing list over the weekend:

Here's a test for a good U-cleaner: Turn it on with> > > fresh solution and drop a used commutator brush in it.> > > You should instantly see what looks like billowing> > > smoke coming out of it. When the "smoke" stops, the> > > brush is clean (about 15 seconds).
 

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Hi Guys,
Thanks for the replies. I will be trying different cleaning solutions. I saw a product called Green Works by Clorox in the store the other day. Anyone know if that's the same chemical mix as Simple Green?

I have an inexpensive ultrasonic cleaner, one of these (http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=3305) and I am not all than impressed with it. Once you add powerful cleaning solution then I question how much cleaning value the ultrasonic action is really providing. I still find myself still having to use a cleaning brush to get harder to dislodge crud off of things like chassis. On Wizzard chassis there is a pocket below the brushes that collects brush dust. Sure, I can use a trimmed flux brush to clean it out, but I'd expect the ultrasonic cleaner to do the job for me, and it doesn't, no matter how many repeated cycles I run it through. I still have to clean it after it's been through the ultrasonic cleaner.
This is the same ultrasonic cleaner I just picked up. Granted the instructions say you only need to use water, but I also see where Harbor Freight sells a cleaning powder for this machine. I have the machine now, and if the only difference between this machine and the more expensive units is this one needs some "help" (a stronger solution), I can live with it.

I've used industrial ultrasonic cleaners that just ran with distilled water to clean (hello Joe, I'm talking antique computer stuff again!) teletype equipment.
You mean I can use it on my teletype machine? How about on the paper tape reader?

Joe
 

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Damm, I remember teletypes too - 300 baud? I remember buying dedicated point to point phone lines so you could get modems to go blazing fast at 9.6k speed (about 1/5th of what you get on dialup today).

I use Simple Green for stripping paint, bit I don't see any improvement using my Harbor Freight ultrasonic cleaner over just soaking. Have not used it for cleaning chassis yet.
 
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