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High Speed Carvers

spindle-spring

Burs Falling Out? Spindle Care.

Turbine Spindle Cleaner - You need this!

If you are like me, my work area gets covered quickly in carving dust. As you carve on your work you will undoubtedly change your burs to get different cuts. After awhile you may notice your burs are just a little harder to insert into the spindle. During carving, you may notice the bur does not stay firmly locked inside the spindle or it falls out completely. So what is going on and how can this problem be fixed? Easy, you need to flush out the debris and build-up inside your spindle.

Spindle Anatomy 101

To answer this question requires an understanding what the spindle does and how it does it. Take a look at this photo. Above is the spindle with a dummy bur inserted. The button on the right side is depressed to release the bur. Looking at the X-ray view, a  push button shown in green presses against the spring shown in red. When the button is pushed, the spring is compressed causing it to expand slightly, thus release its grip on the bur. This spring is the “collet.”

spindle-spring

Get A Grip!

Dust and debris is the major cause of your bur being lose or even falling out your carver. It is the bur itself that is transporting debris into the spindle, and therein lies the problem. This debris gets caught in the coil of the spring. Once the gap between each coil become clogged, the spring can no longer grip the bur. The solution of course is to break lose the build-up on the spring and flush out the debris. 

Spring Cleaning

We have developed a cleaning process that works well to break the build-up of debris on the spindle spring and flush it out at the same time. It is called “Turbine Spindle Cleaner” for lack of a better marketing term. Our Spindle Cleaner contains 1/2  fluid ounce (15ml ) of non-toxic cleaner designed to dissolve the debris and not harm the turbine bearings or o-rings.

Back Cap - Open Detent Position

BackCapOpen

Back Cap - Close Detent Position

BackCapClose

Step-By-Step Vortex F5 Spindle Cleaning Guide

  1. Place a paper towel on you counter. This will capture the cleaner during flushing.
  2. Remove bur from your carver
  3. Turn the back cap to the “open” position. This will prevent cleaner from entering the bearings.
  4. Hold your carver horizontally
  5. Insert cleaner needle into spindle until it stops.  Now move it back about 1/8 of an inch.
  6. Squeeze the bottle until cleaner begins to run out of the spindle
  7. Remove the needle from spindle
  8. Hold your carver vertical with the nosecone pointed down towards the paper towel
  9. Work the back cap by opening and closing it several times
  10. Repeat steps 3 – 8 two more time
  11. Close the back cap without a bur in the spindle and run the tools for 10 seconds to remove remaining cleaner

Tip to keep your spindle spring cleaner​

Just before you insert a bur into your carver, use your thumb and index to wipe the bur shaft clean. This will reduce the amount of debris entering your spindle and obstructing your collet spring.

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Ceramic Bearings are ideal for the Vortex F5. They are superior to common steel bearings in many ways. Ceramic is the ideal material for obtaining higher RPM (faster speed).

Ceramic balls need less lubricant and have a greater hardness than steel balls. This contributes to increased bearing life. Thermal properties of ceramic balls are more superior than steel resulting in less heat generation at higher speeds.

Ceramic bearing assemblies use ceramic balls but they are constructed with steel inner and outer rings. Ceramic balls weigh up to 40% less than steel balls. This reduces centrifugal loading so ceramic bearings can operate up to 50% faster. Also, the outer race groove exerts less force against the ball as the bearing spins, reducing the friction and rolling resistance. The final results, ceramic balls allows the bearing to spin faster and uses less energy to maintain rotational speed.

By not having to insert burs by bear down on a hard surface like other carving tools, radial bearings can be utilized instead of angular bearings. Radial bearings are better suited for carving on their sides. Angular bearings which are primarily used in a vertical position and drilling.

Permanently Lubed for Life Turbine Bearings

Within the nosecone of the Vortex F5, there is a turbine bearing assembly. The bearings are permanently lubed and never need oiling. Warning: using an in-line mist fog oiler or placing drops of oil or cleaner into the hose may cause damage to the carver and void the warranty.