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Author Topic: Sources for Ultrasonic drill  (Read 132 times)

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rellis1962

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Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« on: November 14, 2017, 01:45:40 PM »

I am considering purchasing an ultrasonic drill.  I found the Highland Park drill. Is there any other brands/models I should consider?  $2k is my limit.
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lithicbeads

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2017, 08:56:47 PM »

I believe the holes from that drill are no bigger than .8 mm which is well below the normal small bead drill hole size.
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bobby1

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2017, 10:07:14 PM »

Our club, the Mother Lode Mineral Society recently bought one from Highland Park Lapidary and I have been practicing on it to learn the operation of the unit. We will be placing it in the Modesto Junior College Lapidary room for their student's use. After I have mastered its use I will then be teaching the school's students how to use it. I have been in contact with Highland Park Lapidary about getting larger drill bits. They have ordered some 6mm and 7mm bits for us. Their bits run from .8 mm up to the larger sizes. I currently have the unit mounted in a utility cart and I will have to modify the hole in the cart to get a better return flow for the slurry that drains into the catch bucket to be pumped back up to the drill cone.
They have videos on their website on how to operate the unit.
Bob
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lithicbeads

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2017, 05:36:38 AM »

You need to strain the slurry or the bits of stone in the slurry will erode the horns.
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rellis1962

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2017, 08:41:01 AM »

I do believe the Highland Park drill will go up to 3mm drill size.  Maybe larger according to Bob.  I found one from kingsley north for right at $2k which is about $500 more than HP drill.  KN does come with 5 horns though.  Just wonder about the comparison in quality for the two. Hey lithicbeads, What is the most common hole size in beads?
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lithicbeads

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2017, 07:51:36 PM »

1.25 for about  the last 15 years but as ultrasonics become widely available in Asia 1.5 is becoming the norm. The old method was to use piano wire soldered on the horn and that makes a tapered hole or a hole with a choke point if you drill from both sides. Now most folks use hollow stainless drill bits which  cut a minimum size hole . the diameter of the bit. Parts of the hole can be bigger  because as the driller wobbles the stone it widens the hole. The Kinsley drill is far more powerful and I suspect much easier to use as it likely automatically sets some of the drilling parameters. The really good drills  just give you  a choice on the power and are easy to use. I have had problems with the machines of the company that I suspect is providing the Kingsly  but that was 20 years ago.
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bobby1

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2017, 09:23:18 AM »

Have you had problems with the hollow bits breaking at or near the point where they solder into the horn? I'm struggling a bit with it.
Bob
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lithicbeads

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2017, 03:00:15 PM »

 No but the soldering issue has plagued me for 20 years. What type of flux are you using , just curious? I make sure not to get the bit hot enough  that it looks red. If the bit gets hot it can become very brittle.I also find it very helpful to begin using each bit at the lowest practical power setting and gradually work the power up as the bit shortens. I am very curious about how you are soldering.Cleaning the horn of all grit is very important in the long run as any grit that remains in the pot at the end of the horn makes the silver solder very hard and eventually the pots have to be redrilled and it can be a bear.
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bobby1

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2017, 07:51:00 PM »

I set the horn upright on a solder brick, make sure that the end is clean with no dirt or oil and wipe Handi-Flux on the top 1" of the horn tip. I use an air/acetylene torch with a fairly large tip and heat the horn tip up and wait for the silver solder to turn liquid. I add some solder if the solder isn't full up to the horn tip. I then dip the end of the bit into the Handi-Flux and while holding the bit in a needle nose pliers  I continue to heat the tip of the horn to keep the solder liquid. I hold the fluxed bit on the top of the liquid solder and gently wave the torch across the bit and push it down in the horn tip. As it slips down into the horn tip I heat it a little more to ensure the solder has flowed up a little on the bit. I remove the torch and attempt to hold the bit steady and perfectly straight while the solder solidifies.
I use a 60/40 silver solder wire. I mix the white Handi-Flux  with a little water so it like a heavy cream consistency. I use the air/acetylene torch because the acetylene burns the hottest of any of the other fuel gasses so the horn tip heats rather quickly -  about 30 to 45 seconds.
Thank you for the information on adjusting the power level to the length of the bit. I probably have been using too much power and it is making the bit brittle.
Bob
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lithicbeads

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Re: Sources for Ultrasonic drill
« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2017, 07:58:21 PM »

Your procedure sounds fine. There is a lot of force on a very small bit of metal when you use the drill. Over the years I have learned not to allow the bit to vibrate in the air without slurry running down it to dampen the vibrations a bit.I used to homeschool my daughter then drill at night for many hours. When your so tired you feel like a zombie you can make about every mistake possible eventually, and I did.I still love drilling stone .
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