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Cleaning my new Kremlin 15C253/13
I'm new to Kremlin and I like to know the extent of clean up from other Kremlin owners. This is what I have. 15C25 with paint filter and the one pass pain heater.
I just have the above unit and I'm really not into buying other pumps for other colored products. I want to use my Kremlin for white and other color pigment lacquers along with clear lacquers. At times I will be spraying clear lacquers. So I want to clean my unit as best I can and not worry about when changing colors.
so a couple of things
are you running the heater, if not, disconnect the fluid lines from it, that is taking a lot of thinner
also how long are your fluid lines that can also help reduce the solvent usage a little bit
are you using a high quality thinner to clean out your pump, the price typically is tied to its cleaning ability
i use thinner that i have used before if i am using the same catalyst then i pickup the siphon tube and run virgin solvent
just a couple of things that might help
good luck herb j
I have a 10-14 so I'm not sure how different your machine is.
Generally clean up for me is about 1 qt of thinner. Usually I use the thinner from the last cleaning to start the process, get the thicker stuff out of the lines and the pump.
Then run the pump just about dry and fill up the qt container again with new fresh thinner. I've been using MLC Wash thinner which is their least expensive thinner, probably recycled.
Then I run that through the system emptying into another container (which will be next 1st stage cleaning thinner) until I get to a point before the thinner goes below the pickup tube. Then I'll circulate that thinner through the pump for a minute or so. I actually like to introduce a bit of air into the system to induce cavitation which helps clean the walls of the lines and pump. I keep that in the pump/lines until the next use.
I have a CAT pump and bobcat gun that I am running with a fluid line heater. I keep thinner in the pump/heater and lines when not in use. When I get ready to spray, I pump the thinner into a quart cup until all the thinner is out chasing the last of it out with the new finish.
When I get done, I pump the finish out, chasing it with the thinner that was in the system previously. I cycle it through for a couple minutes, discard that thinner, then put a quart or so of new thinner in the cup and cycle it through. Stop the pump with the rod down, and leave thinner in the system. That thinner will be used to flush out the next time.
So I get by with a quart or maybe a little less of thinner each time I clean up. The thinner may be a little milky, and more so after sitting overnight. If I feel it is too bad, I will pull some clean thinner in the system before pulling in the new finish if I am shooting clear.
My lines are 25' long and 1/8" dia. I am spraying CV, both pigmented and clear. I have a little trouble with white specs when shooting clear after a pigmented job, but not much. I try to shoot a few parts like backs or drawer boxes first to get rid of any little pesky specs that may come out.
Well it seems like I'm doing the cleaning process properly according to what you guys are saying. By the way I have 25 foot line and I use a low quality thinner. Actually last time I used 1-1/2 gallons of settled/recycled thinner finishing up with a gallon of new thinner. Do you guys keep running the new thinner through until it's crystal clear or just a little bit smoky? Recently I seen cheap quality lacquer thinner at Lowe's for about $13 dollars a gallon if you buy the 5 gallon.
Acetone is much cheaper and flushes the lines just fine..... My operation runs about 20+ kremlin pumps in our manufacturing and we flush between material changes... clear and pigmented with Acetone.... We do as others out of a gallon sized plastic container..... flush with the previous last clean flush until it has circulated through the system well.... then we flush with virgin acetone... of course we are buying in large bulk so acetone for us is about $4 a gallon... Still a big step up from the old days of scrubbing pressure pots when done for the day...
Talk to your paint supplier to see if they have gunwash. Its basically just a really crappy and cheap lacquer thinner. Dont use it for your paints, just for cleanup.
We keep two pails below our pump and this is how we clean....
This leaves bucket 1 being fairly dirty and just used for an initial pre-rinse and keeps bucket 2 fairly clean. When the thinner starts looking pretty gross, bucket 1 goes into the waste, bucket 2 becomes 1, and a fresh bucket becomes 2.
Been doing it like this for about 10 years with no issues and only takes about 2 minutes. We now have 2 pumps. One for clear, and one for pigmented, but when we were running a single pump, we would just flush about a qt of virgin thinner when switching from pigment to clear.
JM, your last line item "leave thinner in pump and lines until next use." Would you say the thinner you left in the pump and lines is crystal clear or smoky but somewhat clear?
Thank you for the Kremlin cleanup instructions. I will definitely give it a try
The only time my thinner is clear is when I swap over from conversion varnish to 2K poly. Other than that it's a bit cloudy.
Its a little cloudy, some might even say its dirty :)
JM, if the lacquer thinner in your pump and lines is cloudy and you been doing it like that for 10 years without any problems at all, then that is good enough for me. That is the information I've been trying to find out and thanks to you I feel safe leaving it a little cloudy in my pump and lines. Great information. Thank you very much!!!
I use a similar system on my CAT AAA to the rest of the guys, and yeah, the thinner can stay a little murky.... your not spraying it on anything.
Also FWIW I spray out the first pump of new finish into a "garbage" pail. Then I circulate the new finish back into it's pail for 10 or 12 pumps to make sure there's no excess thinner in the finish.
Lastly, as another poster mentioned, when you switch between pigmented and clears your probably going to get some contamination in the lines. The pigmented always seems to leave residue no matter how much I flush the lines. I think the catalyzed lacquer is so aggressive that it actually bonds to the inside of the lines while spraying. After I've been spraying pigmented and switch back to clear I have to make sure I flush the lines again before spraying and then clean the in gun filter to remove the gunk.
That's the reason I cavitate the thinner, to get bubbles into it which tend to dislodge the finish better in the lines.
Thank you JeffD, JM and LeoG for your further replies. All great information!
LeoG, I like your cavitation ideas. Cavitation is what I did the other day but I didn't realize it was practiced. I ran a few quarts of recycled thinner through. I then pump it out until I have air throughout the system. I then re-energize the system with virgin lacquer thinner. While it was cycling through and pumping out the air and filling the lines with new thinner it felt and sounded like a washer machine agitating, if I can put it that way. I just felt it was cleaning in the system better but now that you enlighten me concerning cavitation I can now see in my mind what is going on in the system. I'm going to comprise everyone's notes together and come up with a plan that will shorten my lacquer thinner and time. Thank you!
I use a qt cup to clean. I'll bring the level down to about 10-15 oz and then I shoot the stream from the gun into the lacquer making is spin around. This introduces air into the system pretty consistently.
Leo G, that makes sense using 10 to 15 ounces. Leo, does your pump run very fast when cleaning out with lacquer thinner and and using the cavitating method?
I operate the pump around 3psi when cleaning like that.
I found myself doing the same thing. About three PSI.
Has anyone had better results cleaning the pump with a higher quality lacquer thinner opposed to a cheaper thinner due to VOC ratings?