Computer radiator for spindle cooling

Has anyone thought of using a PC radiator to cool your spindle vs using a submersible pump. I am not sure how fast the pumps can move the liquid. I like the idea of the system to be closed vs open.

I imagine it would work fine, however, I’m not sure how much the radiator and fans would appreciate living in a dusty shop.

“Anything with a fan is a dust collector.” — some wise woodworker

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I have thought about the same thing. I have a number of Thermaltake radiators that I wouldn’t use on a computer. They are aluminum so I don’t know if they would react to the waterjacket of a spindle.

By chance are the waterjackets stainless steel? I don’t know.

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Hey DigiDigs,

A passive radiator would not be able to remove enough heat from where it is produced, i.e. inside the bearings. But if you think of a water-cooled gaming PC with its radiators and fans, in fact this is how the official cooling stations for spindles work. You have a water pump and a radiator and a fan inside. But the most important thing is the water temperature sensor which signals abnormal condition to the VFD which then is able to stop the spindle (and the controller’s program).

But you got to be sure. This is why you always should use a sufficiently dimensioned cooling system with temperature sensing.

I don’t understand what you mean by this.

Hey Matticustard,

Since most people mill wood here and oiled mechanics like ball screws found on the Onefinity are absolutely incompatible with wood dust, you got to have a powerful dust collection system anyway. And in case the dust is removed sufficiently to protect the balls screws, then the controllers, their fans and their power switch are safe enough from dust too.

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It was never my intention to imply a lack of dust collection. Despite all of my dust collection efforts and air filtration, there is still a small amount of lingering dust in the shop, mostly from tools other than the CNC or simply hand sanding. I blow out the shop daily with a leaf-blower to ensure this does not build up over time, and I blow off the Onefinity rails with compressed air if I ever see anything on them.

I myself use an industrial chiller to cool my spindle, which of course has fans. Ultimately, I was just thinking about how those tiny little fins on the PC radiator could make great nooks and crannies for residual dust to pack in, and that some degree of care may be in order.

I guess I’m just of the opinion that some dust is a part of life. Maybe someday I will discover the secret to a dust-free shop.

Hey Matticustard,

you are right with admitting that it’s difficult to suppress any wood dust, since otherwise in the industry they would not have their mechanics enclosed in rubber bellows, e.g. like here.

But I have seen that many people here use a shop vacuum (often with dust separator) which I think is not that effective as a real dust collector system as found in professional woodworking workshops which is available at relatively low cost, see the system @Dr-Al showed in the forum. The first produce very high pressure but not that much air flow whilst the latter have a high air flow which I think is the right thing for a CNC like the Onefinity (especially with a spindle with which you can produce high chip loads).

PS: grin :slight_smile:

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I should have said I like the idea of using a pump and reservoir sealed and not to use a bucket.

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I used an aluminum fuel cell as my reservoir assuming the metal construction would radiate heat and it has an ice well I figured I would fill up if needed - have never needed to and I run a 2.2kw spindle. I’ve never had the temp probe on the tank get above 40C but I am in a air conditioned space.

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I installed a three fan PC radiator that is mounted to the x rail gantry. It takes 12v @1.5amps. You can use a plug in adapter from Amazon for a few bucks. I also added a flow indicator and small reservoir where you fill the 50/50 mix. I always use dust control and the fans do not see much dust. You do need to get into the habit of cleaning the X50 and area. Its just good practice and you also do PM. Works fine no issues 2.2KW runs all day in summer with no issues.