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Author Topic: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?  (Read 2502 times)

PJEagle

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Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« on: February 15, 2017, 11:17:05 AM »
I have a friend in the plastic injection molding business.  He suggested that I use a PID controlled electric cartridge heater in my brass mold to keep the mold temperature up when I am casting too slow.  Has anyone tried using a small diameter cartridge heater in a brass mold?

cornmastah

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Re: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2017, 02:00:39 PM »
I just keep a hotplate next to my casting pot and set the mold on that whenever I stop casting (ie: bathroom breaks, refilling the lead pot, etc...) to keep the mold warm.

dromia

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Re: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2017, 12:16:53 AM »
That would be a good idea, not sure of what is available and if such heater exists. Being small enough to say fit into the current thermometer probe hole in the mould and powerful enough to keep the mould up to temp.

If there was such a thing then that and the PID would just replace my mould thermometer save on bench space and simplify the process as you could forget about monitoring the mould temp and interrupting the casting to heat up the mould. Also you wouldn't need to keep the cadence up with some moulds to keep them up to temperature. I can see lots of benefits.

I'd spring for one if it could be done.

Al?
« Last Edit: February 16, 2017, 12:24:45 AM by dromia »

AlvinYork

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Re: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2017, 07:53:20 AM »
Working off of Dromia's post. . .

I just hooked up my RCBS LAM to a PID as such :
      k-thermocouple sandwiched in between the Lyman heater and the LAM which runs to the pid. When the temperature is too low the pid activates an SSR (Solid State Relay) that powers the LAM. (The components are really cheap on ebay. . . as long as you don't mind waiting 4 to 6 weeks for it to show up.)

So, I can see wiring the hot plate power though the pid controlled SSR and the k-thermocouple could be inserted into the probe hole.

But I guess that's not what PJEagle suggested originally. I suppose that something could be made that monitors and heats through the probe hole, as I think, Dromia was suggesting. If not the probe hole, the mold cavity, I guess, with the monitor in the probe hole. For that you would have to disengage it for each pour then re-engage afterwards. . .

For the time being, I'm going to wire up my hot plate with a pid!


PJEagle

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Re: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2017, 11:27:22 AM »
Additional Description:

Right now I am using a PID controlled bottom pour pot and a 4 cavity brass NOE mold with a temperature probe connected to the digital thermometer that NOE sells.  I use a hotplate to heat the mold.

One manufacturer makes a 1/8" diameter X 4" long 120V cartridge heater with an 80 watt output.  My daydreaming thinks another hole could be drilled on the opposite mold half from the temperature probe and the cartridge heater inserted.  The cartridge heater would be controlled by another PID.

You would probably need to use a hot plate to bring the mold up to casting temperature and then the cartridge heater might be able to maintain the temperature while someone old and slow like me could keep on casting.

I don't want to mess up a new NOE mold by experimenting.  That's why I asked if anyone else had tried it.

N21911S

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Re: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« Reply #5 on: January 25, 2020, 05:18:40 PM »
I have. I mounted my Lyman 450 on a 1/2" x 4" aluminum plate that I had drilled for a cartridge heater and a k type thermocouple.  Bottom line being that my PID controls the temp of the bullet lube. 

Mike B.

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Re: Has Anyone Experimented With Cartridge Heaters?
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2020, 11:35:44 AM »
I use an inexpensive router speed control with my lube heater plates to better control the lube temperature when sizing and lubing.
That way I do not have to plug and unplug the lube heater plates as the heater probes themselves tend to get too hot otherwise when just plugged straight into AC power.

For the moulds themselves most all of my lead pots have a wide enough top rim - ledge to allow me to set a mold on while fluxing or taking a break in casting.
One can... if need be...  rig up a shelf or a support adjacent to the lead pot to support the mould handles if the mould won't sit comfortably and or securely and (safely) sit on the lead pot top rim by itself to keep its self warm.

When I turn the lead pot on to begin a casting session I set the mould that I plan to use on the same top edge rim so that it also comes to casting temperature as the lead pot comes up to temperature. that way I am good to go when the lead is ready to pour.

The problem that I see with drilling the moulds themselves for heaters is that you will be heating up one side of the mould much more than the other.
Also most of the heaters available...(that I know of) will not get hot enough to be of use to keep the moulds at the proper casting temperature.

Lube heater probes themselves generally do not go much higher than 200 F.
Above that temperature the lubes tend to start to smoke and become totally liquid.
Lead alloys are not even molten at 200 F.

Couple that with the issue of the heater power cords and such with the heater plugged into the mould itself would seem to me to also tend to get in the way, and be a safety hazard when hand casting.




 



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