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-   -   Repairing wire elements (http://talk.craftweb.com/showthread.php?t=7444)

Franklin Sankar 12-03-2009 08:53 AM

Repairing wire elements
 
The hole I drilled to pass my thermocouple into the furnace was too close to the element. The element is above the thermocouple tube and is resting on the tube now. I suspect it will continue to droop and who knows where it will drop/roll/move to.
I will try to get a pic but in the meantime, any idea on how to repair? Anyone joined brittle elements? how?
The element is resting loosely on the tube , I was thinking about how to pin it from falling further down.
Franklin

Pete VanderLaan 12-03-2009 02:46 PM

Joining a brittle element is easy Franklin. Heat the ends with a torch until it glows and gently pull the wire straight. Just be easy. It will straighten right out. Do it to both ends, and when you want to twist them together just make sure the wire is glowing when you manipulate them in any way. Then, pin them and pin them deep.

Franklin Sankar 12-03-2009 05:52 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Thanks Pete. This is one job that I never anticipated was possible. Maybe because of the small cavity I have to work in. The pics does not make it easier because they fool you. I realized that a picture is a useful tool is examining the inside of the furnace. I am able to see it from a different angle and am able to see some parts that were not possible from outside. The elements are resting on a grove but it looks like its on the edge.
Now that you can see it. How about if I heat it and cut it then pull them together and twist. Or just heat the excess and twist it?
Franklin

Pete VanderLaan 12-03-2009 06:37 PM

Cutting the wire is easier when hot than cold. Cold, it's really brittle. If someone can help you, have them heat the wire while you hold both ends with needlenose pliers. Holding both ends is important so you don't stress the unheated part of the wire cuz if you do, it will break and then you will have to fix that too. Holding one end, that part in the groove, heat the portion you wish to pull away and just do it gently and it will come. Make it fairly straight. Then do the other section. With both hot, twist them together. It's really easy once you figure it out. While it's hot, try to make the wire stay in a straight line so it will be easier to re-install.

I did my entire annealer with old element scraps back in the summer. I just didn't have the money for new ones. I had literally twenty pieces of wire all broken up. I heated and connected every one of them, made three separate complete elements and they are all working just fine. I have just been reconnecting this stuff for years. I have a big box of element scrap.

Franklin Sankar 12-03-2009 06:58 PM

Thanks Pete and you get the WWDD award for 2009.
Work hotter work hotter. Than damn man shouting it to me again. I will never forget that.
Franklin

Marcel Braun 12-03-2009 07:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan (Post 84341)
Joining a brittle element is easy Franklin. Heat the ends with a torch until it glows and gently pull the wire straight. Just be easy. It will straighten right out. Do it to both ends, and when you want to twist them together just make sure the wire is glowing when you manipulate them in any way. Then, pin them and pin them deep.

Once again I am glad I take the time to read this forum.

THX.

R. Scott Johnson 12-03-2009 10:02 PM

this really is great information. never would have thought of such repairs.
thanks again!
do moly elements get repaired the same way?

Jordan Kube 12-04-2009 12:55 AM

Unfortunately no. Sure would be nice if you could put them back together.

Pete VanderLaan 12-04-2009 06:27 AM

Just finding all of the parts of the moly element is damn near impossible. Moly elements are like a bent wheel. It can't be mended.

I'm not sure how long the fix is in a wire melter. If it breaks from natural causes, I would replace it but in a spot like Franklin's I think it's worth the effort. Keep the mend area as short as you possibly can. In an annealer they will last for a long long time. Remember to pin it. It's not coiled anymore so it will sag a lot. I think the last time I had to buy an element was about fifteen years ago. Pinning is usually done using the same material if you have some short new sections, or straighten out some old stuff and use it. On annealers, I use 2 1/2 inch stainless screws and those last forever.

Maybe this is one of those dumb short threads that belongs in antiques and classics.

Dave Bross 12-04-2009 11:41 AM

I vote for "antique and classic-ing" this one.

Anything that makes me feel bad all over again about a lot of stuff I've tossed, like damn near new elements with one "indescretion" (read as fumble glass on one spot), is a classic.

Maybe put something in the title about repairing elements?

Scott Novota 12-04-2009 11:48 AM

crap!

I wish I had read this about 2 weeks ago. Looking at what was done and how to repair it I could have fixed it easy.


Next time Gadget....next time.....



Scott.
.

Lawrence Ruskin 12-04-2009 12:08 PM

It was mentioned a while back.

Having somewhere on the net the accumulated wisdom on just repairing and comparing wire melter is a good idea.

Prices for ''off the shelf'' units, durability, capacity and how much they cost to run, and information on building your own.

Competition drives innovation.

A sticky on this site for example.

You could of course do one for any type of melter....

Pete VanderLaan 12-04-2009 01:29 PM

I will try to do something. I had no idea that this was not fairly common knowledge.There is a lot of garbage in my head after forty five years of this stuff. I really don't know how well it will work on a melter. Annealers yes.

Changing the title of a thread is actually impossible. I might be able to merge it into a thread of a different name. "Suspending Elements" isn't half bad. It makes me think about High School and how easy it was to get in trouble.

Pete VanderLaan 12-04-2009 01:38 PM

Well, that was wrong. Changing the name was really easy.


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