Antifreeze

Hi all just a quick question is any one using antifreeze along with distilled water
What do you do in winter when it’s freezing cold if your machine is not in your warm house

Nope. If you read up on it the conductivity of the cooling solution is important. So use few drops of dish soap. Distilled water. And some fish tank anti algae solution. Lots of google sites to look up. Takes about 15 minutes of reading.

The link is from ebay this is ment to be for co2 laser

I wouldn’t put anything besides pure distilled water in my units, anything else increases the conductivity of the coolant and you risk tube arcing and catastrophic failure. If it gets below freezing in your shop or wherever you have your laser, the best course of action is to drain the tube completely and take it out of service until the ambient temperature is high enough to continue usage of the machine without risking frozen coolant. If the coolant freezes in the tube, the tube will crack and your laser will stop working.

Another option is to apply a residential pipe heater tape over your water vessel/bucket/whatever and simply keep the water flowing all the time. It means you’re heating your coolant, which isn’t ideal, but it may be better than destroying your machine.

Or, just heat your shop :slight_smile:

Thanks for the advice I guess I’ll have to take it out of service during the cold weather
Not ideal but don’t want to risk a cracked tube due to cold
Thought about putting it in a big polystyrene enclosure and one for the chiller and wrap the tubing might work

Yeah, drain the tube and give that a shot. If it keeps it above freezing that could be a viable solution

i have antifreeze in mine and havent seen any issues so far

I have it in my water for more than two years with no problem.

I have had RV antifreeze in my 100 watt co2 with cw5200 chiller for 5 years now without a problem. Make sure it is RV antifreeze

y’all are playing with fire. Just because it works for you doesn’t make this a good idea. Increased conductivity of the cooling fluid is a huge source of arcing and tube/power supply failure, and a huge fire hazard.

So many conflecting view on this I’ve researched this on the web and some say it’ll reduce the life of your tube and increase conductivity within the tube casing arcing
I’m going to play it safe and just use distilled water and drain down in winter refill after the cold period

So after doing a lot of research on this I found a company in the UK that manufacture a coolant specially for HV and laser cutters this is what they had to say.

There are 2 reasons for using Distilled water, none of them are due to arcing, you can use tap water with absolutely no issues, There is so much misinformation onthe web and forums, it is difficult for the newcomers to know what is fact or fiction

Reason 1. The main reason for Distilled is that it has all the impurities taken out, so it is electrically inert, if there is a short or fine crack, the 20Kv+ wont arc throught the water to the chassis

Reason 2 Manufacturers of coolers often use dissimilar metals, use of Non distiller set up an electrolytic cell dissolving some of the metal like s sacrificial anode

Any tube that arcs is faulty, it means the glass wall is too thin or has microfractures very common with cheap nasty tubes, Any good brand tube will have sufficient glass wall to prevent this

Coolflow has been specially developed for lasers, We are the Uk Distibutors for Thunderlaser, we use it as standard in all out machine, we also have 4 workshops where we use dozerns of machines lasercutting 7 days a week, we have never had a problem in the 15 years we have sold Laser, or the 25 years of using them before that.

It is a glycol base with modifier, it is also low refractive index which no one on the forums have ever picked up on, when water is used against glass it forms a mirror surface, this mirroring helps contain Photons in the laser cavity promoting more exchange, without the mirror effect the lase process would not work as efficiently and more photons would escape out of the side wall than be reflected between the mirrors in the optical cavity

in a nutshell, its been developed for lasers, its safe, if your tube arcs its faulty. Tube failures are mostly caused by overheating, and poor quality manufacturer, if you ever need to fit a new tube, use SPT, Reci or eCo2, they are the 3 best brands made

That sealed the deal for me