This is the whole skinny on what I did, what I used, and why I did it that way.
I used 230v components because I installed a switched outlet parallel off the main switch in the welder to power this unit. The current draw is so minimal at under 4A (max load), it shouldn't have any measurable impact on the welder's switch. If it ever does burn out the switch, then I will install a relay between the main power input and the switch to power the outlet.
Dayton 1/3hp carbonator motor (230v) : On sale now for $40 at Graingers (the one that came with my pump was junk and had a bee hive in it)
Procon 150gph carbonator pump: $30 shipped via ebay (there’s a guy selling rebuilt 125gph pumps for $42 shipped there now – probably a good idea)
Air conditioning 3 row condenser: $20 via my surplus place (you can substitute a transmission cooler, or heater core for this. Mine is overkill in the biggest possible way.)
Psi gauge: $2 surplus
Flow indicator: $13.85 shipped. This came from another member who got two off ebay.
Various brass fittings as needed for hose used and plumbing needed: I probably have $20 in them at 1-3 dollars each. Specifically, you’ll want Western AW-15’s for the water connections. Those provide the female inlet and outlet for the torch connections. You can also purchase the LH threaded “nut” and a barb fitting to make your own hose to return the water from the power fitting. Those ended up around $2 per end, so my return hose from the power block was a whopping $4.50 with clear hose. I used ¼” air hose because I had a 14’ chunk of it that was too stiff to use for its original purchase. It also makes a solid fit onto the brass barbs, so clamps are optional at working pressure (I used tie wraps as insurance – I don’t think they’re really preventing anything or helping in anyway because you need a screwdriver to help pry the hoses off without cutting them down the middle first).
I used 14ga stainless of some unknown alloy for the front, top, and back covers, but that was because I wanted them rigid enough to mount gauges and the power receptacle to, and to eliminate the need for a support across the center of the top. I used some 24ga stainless for the side, and had originally intended on making the tank out of it, but the tigmate doesn’t go low enough in the amps to keep from evaporating the edges I needed to weld. So that meant I used 14ga on the tank as well. There are a variety of plastic water stowage containers on the market for camping and what not, that would be a suitable alternative to stainless, as long as the temp range was above what the cooler will operate at. I wasn’t sure, so I didn’t take the chance with a unit I picked up at walmart intended for picnics. Another option is to use a stainless pan, and create a lid for it to attach your motor, fan, and radiator to – this is commonly done in commercial units (as is using injection molded plastic tanks). Something to remember when procuring your tank, is that you will need to seal at least one fitting on it if you’re not drawing water out through the top. Keep that in mind when considering different pre-made containers.
2 230v 6” brushless fans: $12.50ea, but earned me a $5 credit at another surplus store because I spent over $25. These puppies have a regulated slow start and move some serious air (rated at 35W each @230v!). Again, overkill. You can use a single 4-6” fan as long as it moves lots of air. I liked the symmetry, and have lots of surface area to cover on my condenser, so rather than making a duct and using a single fan, I just used two and they pull air through the condenser before pushing it back out the side and bottom of the case (the bottom was left open for this reason, as well as easy of dusting with the blow gun).
To connect it all, I picked up a 4 pole terminal strip (it’s a fancy one with a clear cover) for $1.25 – this also came from my surplus place. I like the fact that it’s serviceable, and tidier than point to point wiring would have been. This also allows me to change the circuit configuration of the fans without affecting the wiring on the motor (no additional connections to break and reconnect). I also used an integrated EMI filter NEC male receptacle with power switch and fuse holder to make the power cord connection. I had purchased this many years ago, but it was extra at the time. NEC cables are what modern computers use, so they’re more than abundant, and if anything should happen to mine, I can pull it off and replace it in under 10 seconds. The EMI filter section is completely pointless in this application, but doesn’t hurt anything either – these sell for under $3 and are also readily available (same surplus place).
The frame is 1x1” 16ga mild steel tubing for the base and cross member where the upper motor mount goes. This happened to be scrap left from an early rendition of a table I was making (the decorative iron one shown in my “Ho ho ho” thread), but it was a design consideration, in that it allowed me to tap the mounting holes for the motor, while not needing additional brackets for that purpose – and still kept the outer surface of the frame smooth for the sheet to be applied to. I could’ve used angle on the bottom sides and rear sections, but already had 6 of the 8 miters cut, and one of the corners welded (although, I did need to trim two of the existing sides to fit the new application). The remainder of the frame is 1x1” angle, which also consisted of several of my own drops. There is a support bracket where the inlet and outlet fittings pass through the surface, which allows me to not worry about bending anything when I tighten the water fittings (they don’t need much pressure, just snug enough to not leak). The condenser side protection is expanded steel, which was also a piece I’ve had floating around from making several projects with.
Then I used a honda/acura oil cap for my tank fill hole. Working with the sheet to make the threads inside the flange was a chore, so it ended up thrashing this cap (as I continually needed to bend and straighten the base metal), but a replacement was found for $12 delivered on ebay – the original was $10 shipped. The one I had was a cheaply made generic unit, and the new one is a genuine B&M, so I have higher hopes for the thread cleanliness on that when it arrives later this week. One sacrificed for the cause – no biggie, since I have $50 in sheet metal into the project anyway.
Plumbing of the pump passes through a Fram fuel filter before the pump inlet ($2.15 at my Fleet and Farm supply), as it exits the pump it then goes through a “T” fitting which branches off the pressure gauge on the leg, then out to the torch. When the coolant returns from the torch, it passes through the flow indicator. I did this routing for two main reasons: It makes life harder (j/k!) – It allows me to monitor the performance of the pressure regulation at the pump’s bypass valve, while also indicating that flow is still passing through the torch. Considering that flow has to occur in the line ahead of the torch in order to have flow happening behind it, this is possibly an extra plumbing step that could be avoided – however, I also have two more ¼” NPT female ports available on the flow meter, so I could use those for my temperature sensors before the coolant reaches the condenser in the future (for regulating my fans).
All sheet was cut with either a HF electric shear (which didn’t fare so well against the 14ga) or my cutoff wheel free handed. I didn’t have access to any brakes or better shears, so this was done with the tools available.
Hopefully this gives you the insights and reasoning behind the design I came up with. I haven’t calculated what theoretical BTU rating this beast has, but I do have sufficient reason to believe it will dominate any of the 14000 BTU units commercially available at this time.
Results 1 to 10 of 11
01-01-2006, 04:18 PM #1
Tig cooler white paper and parts breakdown
01-01-2006, 09:05 PM #2Junior Member
- Join Date
- Jan 2006
Just ordered the pump you noted on ebay.
How does the pump secure to the motor?
Is there any special clamp required to lock the pump and motor together?
What manufacture is the flow meter?
01-01-2006, 09:12 PM #3Middle-Aged Member
- Join Date
- Mar 2005
- Dayton Tennessee
Looks good Jim...Congratulations on getting it done!
I worked on mine some last week, not as much as I would have liked !
Back to work next week, but I'll get some more done & post pictures ASAPSyncrowave 180 SD
MM185 with 3035 Spool gun
1971 Roughneck 1e
Optrel Satellite OSE
ESAB 875 Plasma Torch
Lincoln 200SA Diesel
Century 250A/C-D/C BuzzBox
1.5 kVA Spot Welder
Phoenix Electrode Conditioning Oven
Professional Auto Mechanic since 1974
My own shop since 1981
01-01-2006, 09:17 PM #4
I have no experience with that guy, but the guts of these pumps aren't very complex (can't screw up too much), and that's a good price anyway. I'll be interested in hearing what you think of his work and service.
The flow indicator is a Proteus. Someone said the ones miller uses in the coolmate 3's are only like $16 from a dealer.
Edit* I just looked at my pics again, and the model number info is burried under the gauge. No way to get to it without removing the thing.
01-01-2006, 09:20 PM #5Senior Member
- Join Date
- Mar 2006
- Queens NY
i have 2 questions though:
What are the exterior dimensions, and tank capacity?
What is this surplus store you get all this stuff from called?Dynasty 200 DX
All kinds of Smith OA gear
01-01-2006, 09:37 PM #6
Thanks for the kind words. This whole thing was tig practice for the most part. My beads are even starting to get presentable.
It's 12Wx10Hx22"L. Those dimensions were somewhat arbitrary and somewhat constrained by the absolute smallest chassis I could realistically stuff the pump and condenser in while leaving enough space for a tank.
The tank is somewhere over 2.5 gallons. I picked up the plastic jug from walmart, and it's 5 quarts - took more than two of them, but there had been water in the condenser as well, so I'm not sure what the total system capacity actually is.
Axeman Surplus is the store I frequent. They don't do online sales, but they do over the phone ones according to their site.
The condenser came from another place called ABC Electronics. They only had one and had no idea what it came from. What's nice about it, is that it's soldered copper tubing inside an aluminum fin structure. Possibly not the most efficient heat transfer method, but I have more than enough rows to make sure a lot of the heat is dumped before the coolant makes it back to the tank.
I also just noticed I never got a good shot of the fuse holder/plug receptacle. I'll go take one and update the links. I should also get one of the side minus the fingerprints.
01-02-2006, 11:42 AM #7Junior Member
- Join Date
- Jan 2006
How does the pump secure to the motor?
Is there any special clamp that is needed to secure them together?
01-02-2006, 12:26 PM #8Originally Posted by RestomodRegards, George
Hobart Handler 210 w/DP3035 - Great 240V small Mig
Hobart Handler 140 - Great 120V Mig
Hobart Handler EZ125 - IMO the best 120V Flux Core only machine
Miller Dynasty 200DX with cooler of my design, works for me
Miller Spectrum 375 - Nice Cutter
01-02-2006, 02:33 PM #9
Don't pay that through ebay though. Grainger has them for that price new.
01-05-2006, 04:03 PM #10Junior Member
- Join Date
- Sep 2005
What psi is the pump you are running? I see them from 70 to 150psi. Can these be adjusted once received without to much trouble or added cost? Thanks