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TOPIC: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS

Re: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS 2 years 5 months ago #2962

  • AnthonyYan
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Hi Mark76,

Your magnet can lift 38 Kilograms? So, 38 Kilograms * 2.2 Pounds/Kilogram = 83.6 Pounds. That is one VERY strong magnet.

Most magnets (not all) have a dipole or dipole-like field, so their strength drops off extremely rapidly with distance. But with such a strong magnet, it's still powerful enough to demagnetize your credit card from a fair distance, and induce voltages in nearby moving metal objects the same way that happens in a dynamo/electric-generator (like inducing voltages in your camera). And don't let anything metal nearby accelerate into the magnet; at up to 80+ lbs of force, that could cause serious bruising of a finger, or the impact could shatter/chip the magnet (which is actually fairly brittle). And never never let two such magnets click together! You can separate them if you are very strong, but the impact will most likely chip one or both magnets and crush anything in between them.

One possible problem with magnets is only the metal swarf from the knife is magnetic. Most abrasives (SiC, AlO, Diamond, etc.) are not magnetic. So the small amount of abrasive released won't be attracted to the magnet.

Maybe, a simpler solution is to use a fan or vacuum, to blow the swarf away from your sharpener. You could try a saw-dust collection scheme like those in a wood-shop (where air is used to suck sawdust into a collection bin/filter).

This picture is of a vacuum nozzle on a wood drill press. (It is not a coolant sprayer!)
www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?p=58...=1,42401,62604,58751


www.woodcraft.com/product/2001850/3121/m...t-collector-set.aspx


For me, I would hate to do this, because I find sharpening very relaxing and meditative. So having a loud vacuum running would just annoy me. Unless maybe the vacuum itself was far away in another room, and one ran a very long suction hose to the WEPS...

Instead, I like to keep a small amount of water on the stones, so that a swarf slurry drips off which I find easier to clean. Although, you don't want that slurry to drip into your folding knife's pivot, or the WEPS joints.

A much more complicated solution, is to use the opposite of electrostatic powder-paint coating. In powder-coating (for say for automotive and industrial), the paint particles are given an opposite electrostatic charge as the object to be painted. That way, they are attracted to and stick onto the surface for an even coat, and so that they can be permanently baked on in an oven. I suppose the opposite could work: Just hook up the WEPS and knife up to a Van Der Graff generator and give everything the same charge, so the swarf is all electrostatically repelled away. Just try to ignore sparks you will get from touching a metal door knob etc. And don't bother to comb your hair, as it will all stand up anyways.

Of course, I'm totally joking! :D

Sincerely,
--Lagrangian

"What grit sharpens the mind?" --Zen Sharpening Koan
Last Edit: 2 years 5 months ago by AnthonyYan.
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Re: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS 2 years 5 months ago #2966

  • mark76
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ROFL!!
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Re: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS 2 years 5 months ago #2975

  • AnthonyYan
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mark76 wrote:

And I now have a new problem: how to remove the steel filings from the magnet? :mrgreen: I think this magnet will have to leave our house...

I have three thoughts about this, but don't know if any of them would work:

(1) Duct tape is the solution to everything?
Tape up your dirty magnet, and then peel it off... Hopefully the filings stick more to the adhesive in duct tape than they are attracted by the magnet. If it works great. But the worst case scenario is that things get worse when the duct tape leaves adhesive residue on the magnet.... But presumably you can clean that off with Goo Gone or other solvent.

(2) Hot glue?
Same idea as (1). Put on hot glue, let it cool and solidify. Then hopefully it peels off with the metal shavings.

(3) In the future, maybe keep the magnet in a Zip-Lock bag, or wrapped in aluminum foil? Then to clean, just replace the bag and/or foil.

Oh, if that super-magnet needs to leave your house, maybe it can visit my house? :P

Sincerely,
--Lagrangian

"What grit sharpens the mind?"
--Zen Sharpening Koan


P.S. This is both semi-theoretical and semi-practical: many situations involve competing effects of volume to surface area:

(1) The metal particles have an attraction to the magnet which is proportional to their volume.
(Basically true if the particles are close to the magnet, and much smaller than the magnet so that the volume of the particle covers a region of uniform magnetic field.)

(2) The metal particles have an adhesion to the duct-tape/hot-glue which is proportional to their surface area.
(Assuming that if the surface makes good and complete contact with the tape/hot-glue, and assuming that the surface physics of the particles does not change when they very (very, very) tiny, then this is true).)

So the smaller the metal particles, the easier they will be to clean off the magnet surface:
Total Force = c1*V - c2*A

where V is the volume of the particle, and A is the surface area of the particle. The c1 and c2 are constants involving how strong the magnet is, and how sticky the tape/glue is for the metal. I'm using the convention where a positive force sticks the particle to the magnet, and a negative force pulls the particle away from the magnet.

So if the particles are (more or less) spherical we get:
Total Force = k1*(r^3) - k2*(r^2)

where r is the diameter of the spherical particle. The k1 and k2 are constants, and I had them adsorb the constants c1 and c2, as well as constant factors for a sphere's volume and area (ie: sphere volume = (4/3)*pi*(r^3), sphere area = 4*pi*(r^2)).

Finally we notice this: For a tiny number r, its cube (r^3) is smaller than its square (r^2). As r becomes smaller and smaller, the attractive force to the magnet gets small faster than the adhesion to tape/glue. So we reach our final conclusion (given the simplifying assumptions mentioned above):

For removing metal particles from a magnet by tape/glue:
it is easier to remove small particles than big ones.


In physics, chemistry, and engineering, we very often see effects like this. We call it,"Surface Area to Volume Ratio", "Scaling Laws" (how do things grow/shrink when you change the size r?), and sometimes "Dimensional Analysis" (similar to unit analysis: area versus volume).

The canonical example of surface-area-to-volume ratio are dust explosions (such as in wheat grain silos): Materials burn on their surface. The more surface area a pound of material has, the faster it can burn. The energy released is proportional to the total amount of material (ie: total volume and/or total weight). Particles of powder have surface area proportional to r^2, and volume proportional to r^3. So if you work it out, the surface-area-to-volume ratio of a powder is insanely huge (surface area per pound of material). So if the powder is mixed in air, it can burn insanely quickly. And that means a low-level explosion (not technically a detonation, but a very fast conflagration). After many grain-silos blew up, they started monitoring silo temperature, humidity, and amount of grain-dust.


Surface-area-to-volume ratio also affects liquid abrasive sprays, such as those used on strops for knife sharpening. In these liquid sprays, you have tiny (sub-micron) particles of abrasive, such as mono-crystaline diamond, poly-crystaline diamond, boron carbide, cubic boron nitride, aluminum oxide, etc. These tiny particles sometimes like to stick together and/or settle out of solution. I won't go into all the details because I'm not a chemist. But you can see how it could matter: particles stick together with their surfaces (surface area), and part of why they settle out of solution is their weight, which is proportional to their volume. If the particles stick together strongly enough, they can, in effect, form a larger grit particle. This is called "particle aggregation". So people like Ken Schwartz optimize their abrasive sprays to minimize particle aggregation by changing particle size, as well as concentration of various additives that affect surface-attraction and viscosity. Many of these effects are not important for coarse grits, but as the grit gets finer and finer (sub-micron), they begin to matter more and more.

I don't know (not a chemist), but believe this is not significant factor in wax-based stropping compounds (because there the particles probably like to stick to wax very much, possibly more than they like to stick to each other, and the particles cannot easily move around in the solid wax). But please don't shoot me if you talk to a real chemist, and he shows me to be wrong.


The overall point isn't whether the effects surface-area-to-volume ratio are absolutely correct in complete detail for all the situations described. The point is that surface-to-volume ratio is just another tool for how to understand things. Just like energy and force. Depending on the situation, one tool may be better than another.


I didn't mean to give a mini-tutorial on surface-area-to-volume ratio; but since I did, I think I'll just leave it be. I love being a physics major. :)
Last Edit: 2 years 5 months ago by AnthonyYan.
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Re: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS 2 years 5 months ago #2976

  • mark76
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ROFL!!


Hahahah! :mrgreen:

I never thought I'd learn so much about magnetism on a forum about knife sharpening!

The magnet has left the house already. It was too dangerous for the electronics and other stuff. When I made the photograph of the magnet, I was about 50 cm removed from it, and still it drew sparks from the flash light! I didn't dare to get it in a radius of 1 meter from a computer, a phone or even my stereo.

It was quite cheap, however. I bought it here. That shop is in Germany, but I imagine it is sold for similar prices in the US.

So I cannot try any new tricks to remove metal filings. What I did try was the duct tape (3M cellotape), which had too little power :) . The magnet came in a small plastic bag and if I removed the bag, the metal filings simply stayed where they were relative to the magnet. That is, they ended up on top of the magnet :) .

What probably would have worked was to pack the magnet in a larger plastic bag, use it and then turn the bag inside-out before removing it from the magnet.

I now simply do what I always did to prevent metal filings from getting into the pivot of a knife and to get the WEPS clean: a wet cloth and, if necessary, some tape over the pivot.

But please get a magnet and experiment more! (The shop has a 160 kilogram magnet on sale tight now :mrgreen: ) And please do found all your findings theoretically. Love it!
Last Edit: 2 years 5 months ago by mark76.
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Re: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS 2 years 5 months ago #2978

  • AnthonyYan
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Wow, actually, the fact that it drew sparks from your LED flashlight at 50cm...! That sounds scary. I own a lot of electronics, so I think my reaction would be the same as yours: Sell it away. ^_^;

Sincerely,
--Lagrangian
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Re: Here's a few mods, tips, & tricks I did to my WEPS 2 years 5 months ago #2979

  • PhilipPasteur
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www.supermagnete.de/eng/project348

Removing iron filings from magnets from the German site.

I use some small but powerful magnets on the bottom of the rods on MY WEPS. They do attract very fine filings. I have to think that it is better on the magnet than in the rod pivots :).
I can ususlly just rub the fine powder off with my fingers, or sometines a ScotchBrite pad and a brisk fast rubbing motion.

Phil
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Last Edit: 2 years 5 months ago by PhilipPasteur.
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