Ringinator Issues: Help!
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Ringinator Issues: Help!
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Posted on Tue May 28, 2019 3:05 am
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I purchased a Ringinator late in 2018, but had questions about the setup so I sent them to Martin (info@ringinator.com) and got no answer.

I decided today I'm tired of waiting and jumped in after watching all the videos I could find. I had some success, but not 100% and my original questions still remain.

I know Martin has answered questions here before, and I'm hoping he does, but if he doesn't can someone else with experience help me please?

I cut almost exclusively sterling silver or Argentium rings. Occasionally 14kt gold or gold filled. Rarely pure silver or copper. I used a Pepe Jump Ringer for years without a problem, but it only cuts short little coils and I need a lot more rings, hence the Ringinator.

So my questions:

What is the ideal RPM for cutting sterling? I have read all the charts that talk about Aluminum and steel, but I don't see anything for silver.

How tightly does the plexiglass plate have to be screwed down? I don't want to distort the coils, but I know it needs to be tight enough so they don't move, but how tight is tight enough? And is it key for the tension on the plate to be the same at the feeding end as at the discharge end?

While I was pushing the rings through, cut rings started to accumulate all under the plexiglass plate, eventually back into the blade and I had to stop. When I stopped, about an inch worth of cut rings behind the blade.

Finally, does someone with some experience using this system on silver rings have a ballpark estimate of how long the blades will last?

Thanks to whomever answers.

Ocean

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Posted on Thu May 30, 2019 5:34 am
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Sure, silver and argentium are fairly expensive to experiment on -- so short test-coils would doubtless be called for.

Trying to experiment on silver wire, I would take aluminum-type speeds and settings (copper seems too soft to compare well) as a starting-out point, eyeballing what sort of saw cuts I get. Burrs? Rough messy cuts? Or nice and smooth? Probably the same tpi on the sawblade that works for gold will do for the softer silver and argentium.

This link http://riograndeblog.com/metal-hardness-how-to-measure-it-and-why-it-matters-for-silver-alloys/ discusses hardnesses, plural/range of, for sterling and argentium, leading into summarizing their working properties -- looks like you want something about half hard in these metals.

Same Rio blog, on hardnesses: http://riograndeblog.com/understanding-metal-hardness/ -- so, yellow gold and white gold are appreciably harder than pure silver; interesting. And tells you straight out that half hard is good for general work and fullest hardness for things you don't want bending at all in use such as ear wires and clasps. Mmkay, cool.

Heat treating sterling and fine silver, showing their dramatic differences -- that Rockwell hardness is not Rockwell C scale, for sure (C scale is for hardness of steels) and there are several Rockwell scales for various sorts of metals. https://www.riogrande.com/content/heat-hardening-cg-html

Quote:
While I was pushing the rings through, cut rings started to accumulate all under the plexiglass plate, eventually back into the blade and I had to stop. When I stopped, about an inch worth of cut rings behind the blade.


So you want a good way to clear cut rings from the saw. Can you enlist gravity? -- I don't know from Ringinator machines myself, not at all. So somebody would have to explain them to me. You've got four screws, one at each corner, to adjust that plate, from the vids on YouTube. What happens if you loosen the "downstream" side of the plexiglas plate just a tiny, tiny bit? (The vids are doubtless showing aluminum rings being cut.) Are the links downstream of the saw hanging up or dragging on something? Do the cut links show burrs?


'The Minstrel Boy to the War is gone...'

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Posted on Thu May 30, 2019 6:13 am
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Couple quotes from The Ringlord's:

Quote:
For oils that I use on my Ringinator EZ, I use either vegetable oil, or thread cutting oil, I have cut somewhere in the ballpark of 160 pounds of aluminum, about a 5 pounds of copper and maybe a pound of sterling, plus about 1 oz. of stainless off the blade I am using and still dont get burrs, or a thicker warped kerf. The blades I use are the ones that came with my ringinator.

Bolding mine. Next post down, responding to the above, read
Quote:
I'd love to see your setup using oils - I use candle wax to lube the blade for BA/copper/sterling. I spin 3' coils (except for sterling because I'm not made of money) and basically just jam a chunk of wax into the spinning blade to cool/coat it. Once per 3' coil for 20/18g, twice for 16g, and about once a foot or so for 14g, and it seems to work well for me. Cut rings fall down a small sheetmetal ramp I built (perforated with holes so wax chunks and metal dust fall down) into a colander (or wire mesh trash can if I'm cutting a whole bunch of the same size), and I've built a dust collection system by duct taping some plastic tubing right under the blade and then connecting that to my shop vac, which sits outside so any residual dust is blown out of the garage completely. That traps about 90% or so of the mess, most of the rest comes off when I shake out the colander or trash can and knock free the rest of the wax/dust stuff, and then tumbling the rings in hot water and blue dawn cleans them and brings them to a perfect, burr-free shine.


From http://www.theringlord.org/forum/index.php?/topic/9765-ringinator-ez/

https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-a&rls=org.rosa:en-US:official&q=ringinator+cutting+speeds&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjzkYK4xMLiAhVNrp4KHZTpBSIQ1QIoAnoECAcQAw&biw=808&bih=491

From 2010 on-site: http://www.mailleartisans.org/board/viewtopic.php?t=15599&view=next&sid=b1da9f7e946cca8850780db9cfae383c

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Posted on Thu May 30, 2019 6:19 pm
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Thanks for the input, Konstantin, still hoping that Martin or someone who actually uses a Ringinator would answer, but...

The rings don't have burrs, they're cutting great, as long as I keep a constant pressure on the coil. But toward the end of the coil, when I start to reduce pressure the rings start bunching up under the plexiglas. The feed/discharge chute (for lack of a better term) angles down, so gravity should help, and no doubt does a little. But I think because there's a constant lubricating stream passing over the blade causes some rings to "stick" when the pressure decreases. Not sure if that makes sense. Anyway, thanks again for answering. I hope I'll get some more specific guidance.


Ocean


Joined: March 27, 2002
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Posted on Fri May 31, 2019 5:13 am
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Sounds like you'd want a "push stick" then. The promo vids of course were running these very looooong coils of what looked like aluminum, seeing as it was so fast and easy to cut. All that extra still upstream of the saw was its own push stick, and just as convenient as you like. Until you come to the end.

So, when the remainder of the coil is shorter than the distance from the upper edge of the plexiglas plate to the sawblade, of course there's no way to get that end down there without some tool or maybe a special arrangement with masking-taping several coil ends together end to end and feeding them down the Ringinator that way -- until you're at the last coil stub-end.

To make a push stick I'd take some wooden dowel, sized the same outer diameter as the links you're cutting so you press evenly around all the link's circumference and then nothing flops over out of position. Use the Ringinator's saw to cut a groove along the length of the stick to get the wood out of the way of the saw -- the groove doesn't have to run end to end of the dowel, just be enough of a cutout to get the coil stub-end through the cutting, and push the coil end through with that. Recommend the groove be cut wider than the sawblade is thick, by taking a couple-three passes.

**************
An alternative push stick would be a 5" piece of aluminum channel stuff, approximately the size of the link OD. Could be smaller. The channel's open side, like this |_| only upside down, goes on the bottom and lets the saw through. You can temporarily tape either a wrap of tape or tape on some shims of any material to bear on the link if your pushie-pokey is too small for the links you're cutting.

**************
You could go as minimal as two popsicle sticks with a little wood spacer (bits of another popsicle stick) Elmer's-glued together looking like a homemade wooden clothes pin. The sawblade is in the space between the sticks and the sticks' ends push on the coil end.

*************
Push sticks are a safety tool for table saw type tools, of which a Ringinator is just a miniature, with a cover. As you can figure, it's a lot better if a table saw gnaws on an extra bit of wood than on living flesh.


'The Minstrel Boy to the War is gone...'

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Posted on Sat Jun 01, 2019 3:22 pm
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"pushie-pokie"...I love it. Yes, I actually just bought a length of small wooden dowel from Lowe's just for that purpose.

Thanks again!


Ocean


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Posted on Sat Jun 01, 2019 11:57 pm
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Back in the day aluminum was machined with Kerosene. Perhaps a small drip of that may work for Stirling also.

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Posted on Sun Jun 02, 2019 4:54 am
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Apparently, anything from paraffin wax (canning wax) to soapy water to cutting oil -- and yeah, kerosene's plausible, isn't it? -- though I think cutting oil is less combustible and just as slick -- would work. All a cutting fluid really has to do is carry off heat, secondarily to keep chips from flying, and if it is repeatedly reusable, all the better.


'The Minstrel Boy to the War is gone...'

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Posted on Mon Jun 10, 2019 11:07 pm
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I use cutting oil. The Ringinator blades are bloody expensive and more so thanks to the tariffs on Chinese goods.

The rings are coming out beautiful, but the backing up under the plexiglass still drives me nuts. None of the videos I see seem to show that happening so I'm obviously doing something wrong.

Thanks for all the input. Maybe Martin will show up some day and answer my questions.


Ocean


Joined: October 22, 2010
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Posted on Tue Jun 11, 2019 7:16 am
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there is not an accurate measured pressure that i can tell you to put on the plate, but here's what i do. i assemble the clear plate with coil in and screw the turn knobs on just to where the knobs touch the springs. then, the back end knobs get 5 rotations into the spring and the front knobs get 6 rotations into the spring. in my experience, the front end should have slightly more pressure. if the rings are falling behind the cut under the clear pressure plate, then you need more pressure on the back of the clear plate.



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Posted on Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:16 pm
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Thanks Joshua, that is exactly what I've been looking for!


Ocean


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Posted on Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:53 am
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Do I understand right that the "front" is the upstream end, and the "back" is at the downhill, downstream end where the cut links come out?

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Posted on Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:57 am
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Good question. I read it as opposite of that, but now I’m not so sure.


Ocean


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Posted on Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:04 pm
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At least it's narrowed down -- *one* of those alignments is going to work.

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