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BigSix

Hydraulic Splitter Q. for D-17 And Other Gurus....

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BigSix
D-17 Dave, I hope this finds you and everyone well! Since you are the resident hydraulic guru, and you’ve kindly offered your services in the past, I would like to ask you a question. (In fact, Dave, some time ago, you advised me on how to change the fluid on this machine--and I'm finally getting to it! LOL) Of course, the question is open to any and all contributors, so please feel free! I have a small, hydraulic wood splitter from Sears. I believe it is a 5hp. model, but it could be even smaller—it’s B&S powered. It has no hydraulic filter or suction screen on it, and the reservoir tank is smaller than a lunchbox. This is the tiniest gas woodsplitter I’ve ever seen, and is probably about from 1980, or older. I want to add a hydraulic fluid filter onto it, as I discovered very small, bright, shiny metal shavings in the fluid, that are NOT pieces of the tank itself. I understand these flakes are not a good sign, but I want to prolong the machine’s life as much as I can. I assume the bright flakes are part of the pump itself, but I don’t know…. The pump and cylinder work well, without any unusual noises or other problems. There was also a lot of water in the fluid—it looked like tomato soup that someone made with chocolate milk, instead of white milk. Eeeeuuuuwww…! I drained the tank, evacuated what I could by pushing the ram back, and I plan on doing several fluid changes, to eventually flush out as much of the bad fluid as possible. The reservoir rusted through, due to sitting with water in it, when the P.O. owned it. I brazed up a patch for the tank, which still has some corrosion in it, in places, but no longer leaks. The fittings on the tank are just “slip ons” or “hose barbs,” but are smooth, except for one ridge on each fitting, to keep the hose clamps from slipping off. Consequently, the 5/8” O.D. hose barbs on the tank provide no way to use a threaded, in-tank suction filter. So, while it seems, from my reading of the Northern Tool site, that I could have used the cheaper, $16.99 filter and mount. below, IF I could insert a suction screen into the reservoir itself, since I cannot do that, it seems I cannot use this filter assy: Buyers Return Line Filter — 20 GPM Capacity http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_6970_12006_12006?cm_vc=C5503 Rather, it seems I must use the much more expensive assy: Buyers Hydraulic Oil Suction Strainer http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_6970_24414_24414?cm_sp=Customer%20driven-_-Recently%20Viewed-_-Product%20Page Is that correct? And is the only difference between the two the fact that the $44.99 model has this: “Includes 149 micron stainless steel mesh element.”? I had thought a filter, whether I had a suction screen or not, would be a VAST improvement—but do I need a "suction screen" of some kind, anyway, and if so, why? There are flakes of old paint and corrosion I cannot seem to flush completely from the repaired tank…. Does the suction screen prevent these larger pieces from clogging up access to the finer, "10 micron" filter media itself? Also, if I use the $44.99 model, with built-in suction screen, will that make more resistance on the fluid, and possibly starve the pump or cause other damage I’m not considering? Lastly, please see these “hose barb fittings”: Hose Barb Fitting http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/NTESearch?storeId=6970&N=0&Ntk=All&Ntt=3/4%20NPT%20adaptor%20to%20hose&Nty=1&D=3/4%20NPT%20adaptor%20to%20hose&Ntx=mode+matchallpartial&Dx=mode+matchallpartial I need something similar, but smaller. Specifically, both of the remote filter housings, linked above, have female ¾ NPT threads. However, I am using smiple, 5/8 I.D., low pressure hose, for the supply and return lines—only the high-pressure hose, running between the pump’s output side and the valve body, have threaded fittings on them. So I need a “hose barb fitting” that goes from ¾” NPT down to a 5/8” O.D. hose barb fitting, so I can slip my low-pressure hoses back on, and clamp them, as was originally done when these hoses slipped onto the 5/8” O.D. nipples that are welded onto the original tank. Where would I get a “hose barb fitting” that goes from ¾” NPT down to a 5/8” O.D. hose barb fitting? Thank you in advance. Sorry this was so lengthy. All the best, BigSix

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BigSix
quote:
Originally posted by wilm169
Barb hose fitting is just a pipe nipple with ribs around it. Most hardwares have them.
Thank you, man. I will ask at my local hardware store, then. In the meantime, I'm hopeful someone can advise on my questions about which filter I need. I also need to ask WHERE the filter should be cut into. The Northern catalogue says: "This filter is typically located in the return line to the reservoir." Thanks. Peter

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Vassal
BigSix, My $.02 from my foggy memory of hydraulics class; I think you've answered your own questions. Since you can't be sure that the tank is absolutely free of contaminants and it does not have a screen, you should use a filter just downstream of the tank. In this position, the filter will protect everything in the system by catching the debris leaving the tank. This is the more coarse and more expensive filter. The ideal layout for your set up (and most others) would incorporate a tank screen plus a filter in the return line, downstream of the cylinder. In this position, the filter catches the finer debris that gets in past the 'dirty parts' which in your case is the ram/cylinder that will eventually allow dirt in past it's seals. The tank screen should do the rest of the work. That said, if it were my toy, I would probably find a good tank (with a screen) or go back to the brazed patch and braze in a fitting that would allow for the use of some type of screen. Then I'd install the cheaper filter in the return line. This way you have some protection at both ends of the system. Hope this helps, good luck!

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D-17_Dave
Mike hit it pretty good. You won't find any real good filters on the suction side of the pump due to the restriction of oil flow would starve the pump. The screens on an intake are for chunks of debris that would otherwise cause some catastrophic problem in ingested into the pump. due to this the only real place for a filter is in the low pressure line returning to the reservoir. So, now on to your question. If your tank has rusted out, has contamination from ANY source, described as metal or water then you likely need to replace the tank. If this is the case then this could solve several problems at once. Buying a small pre fabbed tank should give you several things you need. It may have a debris screen, it will have the needed fittings to hook up the hoses, and it may have a bracket or mount for a return filter base since this is the location of most return filters. The need for a return filter has already been established. The benefits in real time are to trap any further contamination that may come from wear or to catch any contaminates that are left over after the flushing of the system. The other benefit is to catch the water that often condensates in these type of vented systems. So any filter you add will help as long as it's rated for such duty and flow capacity. BTW, I doubt that your small system has any larger flow rating than 10-15GPM but you'd need a flow meter to verify this so the safe thing is to go larger. I would go with a filter that is economical and easy to find so your not stuck some time hunting something odd. You may already have some amount of damage to the system but I wouldn't be concerned as this has likely only slightly decreased the overall efficiency of the system. Something your not likely to see in normal use so don't worry. The positive on this is that your being proactive in servicing it and trying to help it out by installing what should have been on it in the first place. On a side note, you may never get rid of all the contamination such as the water or small debris. But anything you get out will help it greatly. I'd flush it out until the bulk of the fluid looks fair and free of most of the milky look.

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BigSix
Mike and Dave, Thank you both VERY much! I will go for the new tank--that's hard, since it took forever to braze a patch into the old one (multiple leaks). But you're right--the inside is still crappy, and it would be GREAT to get one with a provision for a common suction filter. Your collective advice makes a lot of sense, and I appreciate your guidance re: filter placement, etc.... The way you touched on the theories behind the advice is very much appreciated as well. Re: the Low Pressure Lines: This may be a dumb question, but the tank (smaller than a lunchbox) has two nipples on it--one low, and one near the top, but both on the vertical sides of the tank. So...I'm assuming the LOWER nipple is the suction "pickup," if you will. In other words, that fluid should flow OUT of the lower, low-pressure nipple on the tank, and that the UPPER nipple is for the fluid returning to the tank. Is that correct? That way, even if the fluid is somewhat low in the tank, the pump is not sucking air, right? (I just needed to confirm that so I know where to locate the filter, and suction screen.) Do you guys have any recommendations for a source for a new tank? I was thinking McMaster Carr, but I haven't tried yet. Thanks again! Peter

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Vassal
I'm glad to help, just trying to 'pay forward' you know? The guys here are awesome, it's the least we can do.... I looks like you've got the tank thing figured out too. Sure, we've all seen some dumb designs, but I think this one's a no-brainer; lowest port is pickup, higher ports are return and breather. As for a tank, you might as well start back at Northern= Here's a small one for $60 but no strainer (another $16 - ouch!)
[img]http://www.northerntool.com/images/product/images/4049_lg.gif[/img]

[img]http://www.northerntool.com/images/product/images/4011_med.jpg[/img]
I'd probably skip the strainer and buy the cheaper coarse filter you mentioned above AND their finer return filter. But that adds up fast! As cheap and as broke as I am, I would probably make my own tank from a found object (fire extinguisher, coffee can??). Hackery at it's finest! Good Luck

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