Purchasing an ultrasonic tank

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  • #48829
    brianw
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 21
    • Total Posts: 109

    Hi All,
    I want to buy a cleaning tank and have been looking on eBay to see what is available.
    I want to use it for cleaning clock movements rather than watch movements and am not sure what size to get.
    2 litres seems to be a good size, but maybe I should get a larger size I don’t know.
    If I get a larger size then I may end up wasting a load of chemicals unnecessarily, but perhaps 2 litres is too restrictive.
    Also. Do I really need all the fancy digital controls, or is it better to go for something simple?
    Any ideas or advice will be gratefully received.
    Thanks in advance,
    Brian

    #55454
    willofiam
    Moderator
    • Topics Started: 75
    • Total Posts: 1437

    Hi Brian, great question and please follow up with what you decide as it may help others out there…..2 years ago I bought a 2 1/2 gallon ultrasonic new for $360.00 The name brand is Prosonix. First off I had NO experience with a ultrasonic cleaner, because of money and because of the fear of getting burned buying used stuff I thought this would be a good deal on a new product, I have used mine for 2 years and it works the same as when I bought it new. It has good surface action and when I stick my hand in it it has a stinging effect on the skin 🙄 (dont do that) I wanted large capacity and am glad I went for the bigger size, fits large clock plates and bunches of stuff (mainsprings). I have put 3-400 clock movements thru this BUT remember…. I have nothing else to compare to. the fancy digital readouts would be nice but all mine has is a knob to turn and a switch to flip, the simpler the better for me, the knob is a timer and the switch is the heater. As far as the cleaning solution, if you mix up what Bob has on the videos it cost very little to make 2 1/2gallons, I buy the historic timekeepers stuff from timesavers, I like it, its easy and quick to get a new tankful, in a 2 1/2 gallon tank, a gallon of the solution will make 3 batches for around $40.00 total (with continuous use depending on how dirty the clocks are a fresh tank will last 4 – 6 months). I use it until it gets pretty dirty sometimes refreshing it with ammonia. someday I would like to see the action of those really expensive units, maybe the are super good but for now I am happy with the off brand (by the way there is little info out there on the machine I bought) Have a great day, William

    #55455
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Hi Brian,
    I took a gamble and bought an old rough looking ultrasonic tank on e-bay(about 7 litre size tank), cost me £56 plus £12 postage and it works great but if it hadn’t I would have had the grief of sending it back etc. As to size it depends on what you are wanting to clean in it, a 2 litre tank might just be enough to cover a smiths mantle clock but nowhere near big enough for a long case mech. Worse case scenario, if you are not looking to do many big clocks then get a smaller one, there is a lot to be said for hand cleaning if you do have to clean something that wont fit in the tank. As for digital display and a heater etc, my tank has an on and off switch, it gets warm through use so I wouldn’t worry about a heated version, keep it simple, there is less to go wrong! For cleaning solution I use soft soap, ammonia and water. Oh and check the actual dimensions of the cleaning tank, 2 litres might sound ok but the shape of the tank could stop you being able to completely immerse the clock plates, which is not good.
    Paul.
    p.s. hopefully will get your tailstock done this Friday :)

    #55456
    david pierce
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Brian,
    Always check with Uncle Larry’s Watch Shop for these type of items. He seems to always have this sort of thing in stock.
    david

    #55457
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Uncle Larry is based in Canada, postage will be very expensive to the UK!
    :)

    #55458
    brianw
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 21
    • Total Posts: 109

    Thanks for the helpful comments and advice.
    I think I’ll go for something a bit bigger than 2 litres with no fancy digital controls and also new. Perhaps 3.5 litres.
    As Arutha suggests, I can always clean by hand if I have to deal with a large movement.
    I’m in the middle of trying to accumulate the tools I need, and so far have bought some old and good second hand tools with no problems.
    I think that because the tank is electrical I would prefer to buy new so that I can pretty much guarantee that it will work OK.
    I know that it will cost more initially, and my funds are limited, but perhaps in the long run it will prove to be the better option.
    I’m finding tool buying quite difficult as I am a complete novice and am only just starting to find my way around what is needed.
    It’s good to know that I can get help from this forum.
    Regards, Brian

    #55459
    david pierce
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Brian,
    I have found that buying tools is easy. Paying for them is a whole other matter.
    david

    #55460
    gerene
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 16
    • Total Posts: 377

    @Arutha wrote:

    Uncle Larry is based in Canada, postage will be very expensive to the UK!
    :)

    I agree with you Paul, I inquired once with Uncle Larry’s but the shipping cost from Canada to Europe was prohibitive. Really sad, because it seems otherwise a very interesting place to buy.

    Jan

    #55461
    tmac1956
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 171
    • Total Posts: 1259

    @brianw wrote:

    Thanks for the helpful comments and advice.
    I think I’ll go for something a bit bigger than 2 litres with no fancy digital controls and also new. Perhaps 3.5 litres.
    As Arutha suggests, I can always clean by hand if I have to deal with a large movement.
    I’m in the middle of trying to accumulate the tools I need, and so far have bought some old and good second hand tools with no problems.
    I think that because the tank is electrical I would prefer to buy new so that I can pretty much guarantee that it will work OK.
    I know that it will cost more initially, and my funds are limited, but perhaps in the long run it will prove to be the better option.
    I’m finding tool buying quite difficult as I am a complete novice and am only just starting to find my way around what is needed.
    It’s good to know that I can get help from this forum.
    Regards, Brian

    Brian:
    The advice I’ve gotten here helped me decide what I needed, what I didn’t need, and guided me around so much of the crap that’s out there. All of this saved me a lot of money and reduced the stress during the learning process (which never ends).

    Ultimately, the pittance that I invested in joining this forum turned out to be the best investment I’ve ever made. If I’d only had this much luck in my other endeavors… ;)

    Good luck!
    Tom

    #55462
    mahlon
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 28
    • Total Posts: 215

    Brian, I have to agree with Tom. I have been on here for a little over a year. By reading the post, I have been able to repair several of my own clocks, as well as a couple of them for profit. When you finally dive in and take that first movement apart it all starts to click( or tic) :) Ii have a couple of people here in town that are retired clock people, that I have been able to help using this forum. Mahlon

    #55463
    brianw
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 21
    • Total Posts: 109

    Just thought I’d post an update on my search for an ultrasonic tank.
    I finally decided, after much advice to buy a new 6.5 litre tank from eBay as it seemed a sounder option than buying an electrical appliance second hand.
    The company I bought it from import from China but they had a UK warehouse and the tank arrived in two days.
    I was very pleased when it arrived, but …..
    It didn’t work.
    I had to jump through all sorts of hoops including sending the company videos of the fault.
    They offered to give me £50 compensation (the tank cost £179). I refused, so, and this is amazing, they offered to get a new printed circuit board shipped from China with full instructions on how to fit and it would only take three weeks for delivery.
    I refused again.
    Then they stopped responding to my messaging so I contacted eBay.
    eBay informed me that they could freeze the funds in the vendors PayPal account and they contacted the vendor.
    Success! eBay got my money back as promised in their blurb.
    I guess that if there is something to learn here it is that eBay do keep their word if you pay using PayPal which I did.
    I’ve still got the tank. They don’t seem to want it back.
    The search continues…..

    #55464
    ewinrow
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 26
    • Total Posts: 185

    Hey Bryan, I just brought this off eBay and got it in on Monday. Works wonderful for me. I put clock gears and springs into it so far. For right now it’s large enough for me and what I’m doing. I only paid $60.00 for it new and in box. It’s tank size is 1400ml,110 AC, 8x8x6, power 60 watts, with basket and other accessories. (NEW PRO LARGE 60W ULTRASONIC ULTRASOUND CLEANER JEWELRY.) Sold by, (e-fortune 12022) I really like it. Oh, shipping was free. Need any more info from me, just post-it and I will assist you as much as I can. Good day to all.

    #55465
    davidjm
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 4
    • Total Posts: 17

    Hi Brian, Uk here also. May i ask what cleaner and rinse products your using in your ultrasonic tank? also maybe you could briefly decrible your procedure.

    Thanks

    #55466
    david pierce
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Brian,
    The electronics in your UC may have been set up for a different voltage and powerline frequency than what is used in your area. Before buying an item that uses electronics always check for the compatibality to make sure it will work for you.
    david

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brianwPurchasing an ultrasonic tank