Author Topic: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!  (Read 3941 times)

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Offline Chris56000

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 Hi!

I'm in a rather daft predicament at work!

I put one of those small 1U 19" type aluminum front panels from a pcb at work to clean off the yellow dirt and grot on it in our hot wash tank and all the bloody lettering came straight off!!!

It was only lettered in ordinary Helvetica lettering and I can easily re–create the label design, but I'm looking for some means of printing them on the panel – I've got a HP colour laser at home & I bought a roll of self–adhesive vinyl from my local craft store – will this melt in the fuser, or is there a special setting for vinyl on the printer?

I need to get this sorted somehow before my grumpy Manager gets back on Monday, so ordering online is out of the question!

By the way I'm in the UK so American store brands are no good to me!

Any quick suggestions please?

Chris Williams

PS!

There was another (clean!) unit the same for me to take the measurements, size, spacing, positioning, etc., of the original labels by the way!
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 07:21:22 pm by Chris56000 »
It's an enigma that's what it is!! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!!
 

Offline DC1MC

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2018, 07:24:20 pm »
https://www.google.com/search?q=letraset

Edit:
https://www.ebay.com/bhp/dry-transfer-letters

And afterwards some spray-on lacquer.

 Good luck,
 DC1MC
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 07:28:47 pm by DC1MC »
 

Offline edpalmer42

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2018, 07:32:11 pm »
Unless the vinyl is designed for a laser printer it will probably melt and destroy the fuser.

You could try the 'toner transfer' idea that's used to make circuit boards.  Create a mirror image version of your label, print it on transparency, special toner transfer paper, coated inkjet paper, or (my favorite) store flyers that have a shiny finish.  Then you have to use an iron or a hot laminator to transfer the toner to the aluminum panel.  A clear coat spray afterward would be a good idea.

If you've never done something like this, it might take multiple attempts.

Good luck!

Ed
 

Offline bsudbrink

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2018, 07:47:05 pm »
I'm pretty sure you could get a Brother label maker in the UK.  I don't know what they might cost, but in the US, they are around 50 dollars.  You can get clear tape stock.  It seems to be pretty durable and you can choose between several fonts and sizes.
 

Offline DaJMasta

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2018, 07:48:55 pm »
If it comes down to it, a fine brush, a steady hand, and some black paint (or black primer, which will stick better) will do alright if you cover it with some polyurethane or something.  Not super uniform lettering unless you're really good, but legible.  Something like a paint pen and an overcoat could probably do alright too.
 

Offline Seekonk

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2018, 07:56:49 pm »
It doesn't take much to remove some silk screening.  I've had some instruments where the printing started coming off with Windex ammonia based glass cleaner.
 

Offline JFJ

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2018, 08:37:42 pm »
Earlier this week, I noticed that my local Aldi store had Dymo Labelmaker machines for £14.99, and Clear Plastic Label Tapes for £3.69 each. It may not be an ideal solution, but it would be quick an easy.
 

Offline ogden

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2018, 08:54:10 pm »
It is highly unlikely that you will put back that bloody lettering so good that nobody notices. It could be so that by trying to fix it, you will do next bad thing to that panel. My suggestion would be - don't try to hide it, admit what happened. After all your intentions was good. Everybody sometimes makes mistake. Yes, I don't know your manager. If he is capable to fire you just because of such minor mistake- try to fix it.
 

Offline Mr. Scram

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #8 on: September 20, 2018, 09:10:40 pm »
It is highly unlikely that you will put back that bloody lettering so good that nobody notices. It could be so that by trying to fix it, you will do next bad thing to that panel. My suggestion would be - don't try to hide it, admit what happened. After all your intentions was good. Everybody sometimes makes mistake. Yes, I don't know your manager. If he is capable to fire you just because of such minor mistake- try to fix it.
I'm with ogden. Hiding the problem only leads to further complications and makes you look dishonest. Cleaning equipment is hardly a grave offense. Honest mistakes can and will happen and people regularly break very expensive things. Being upfront also allows the problem to be fixed properly, which is in everyone's best interest.

At least you didn't drop a satellite causing $135 million worth of damage.

 

Offline anachrocomputer

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #9 on: September 20, 2018, 09:21:13 pm »
There was an article on Hackaday today about using over-the-counter phone customisation services to deposit etch resist on PCBs. It seems that you can go to a booth at the shopping mall and get images printed onto small metal objects (typically phones) for customisation. Now, I've never seen such a booth, but there again I wasn't looking for one! If you could find one, and somehow give them the artwork and the metal panel, I wonder if they could print on it? They appear to use "UV printers", whatever they are.
 

Offline cvanc

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #10 on: September 20, 2018, 09:42:25 pm »
At least you didn't drop a satellite causing $135 million worth of damage.

Wow!  I zoomed in on that and it appears there was not one damn bolt trying to hold it to the platform.  Someone totally skipped that step  :wtf:
 


Online langwadt

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2018, 09:53:38 pm »
It is highly unlikely that you will put back that bloody lettering so good that nobody notices. It could be so that by trying to fix it, you will do next bad thing to that panel. My suggestion would be - don't try to hide it, admit what happened. After all your intentions was good. Everybody sometimes makes mistake. Yes, I don't know your manager. If he is capable to fire you just because of such minor mistake- try to fix it.
I'm with ogden. Hiding the problem only leads to further complications and makes you look dishonest. Cleaning equipment is hardly a grave offense. Honest mistakes can and will happen and people regularly break very expensive things. Being upfront also allows the problem to be fixed properly, which is in everyone's best interest.

At least you didn't drop a satellite causing $135 million worth of damage.

or drill a hole in a part for the spacestation and cover it up with a bit of glue

 

Offline Mr. Scram

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #13 on: September 20, 2018, 10:14:35 pm »
Wow!  I zoomed in on that and it appears there was not one damn bolt trying to hold it to the platform.  Someone totally skipped that step  :wtf:
The bolts were fitted and later removed by others. The people who were tilting the satellite didn't check again. There's a detailed report on what happened.
 

Offline Mr. Scram

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2018, 10:20:24 pm »
or drill a hole in a part for the spacestation and cover it up with a bit of glue
I missed that glue bit and don't see much about it. Where did you read that?
 

Online langwadt

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2018, 10:56:34 pm »
or drill a hole in a part for the spacestation and cover it up with a bit of glue
I missed that glue bit and don't see much about it. Where did you read that?

I can't remember, but from what I understand someone at the factory drilled a hole in the wrong place or
the drill slipped, instead of fixing it properly it was glued. Maybe the guy did it to hide his mistake,
maybe he was told to hide it   
 

Offline vk6zgo

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #16 on: September 21, 2018, 03:52:00 am »
or drill a hole in a part for the spacestation and cover it up with a bit of glue
I missed that glue bit and don't see much about it. Where did you read that?

I can't remember, but from what I understand someone at the factory drilled a hole in the wrong place or
the drill slipped, instead of fixing it properly it was glued. Maybe the guy did it to hide his mistake,
maybe he was told to hide it

A bit like the Chinese transmitters we had at one of my jobs.
They stuffed up when tapping one of the screw holes to fit a cover panel, so they stuck a self tapper in that hole.
 

Offline cdev

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #17 on: September 21, 2018, 04:03:42 am »
I would use a DTP or Inkscape like program to make a new front panel to size and go to a copy shop to print it on a large format printer. I would make a bunch of them because you're not unlikely to need several tries. Then I would perhaps laminate it to prevent the printing from being destroyed, then I would cut it very precisely and - this is going to be hard, maybe glue or ??? it in place. After you put knobs, etc, on it may look okay. Keep it simple. Use a nice simple font.
"What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away."
 

Offline Koray

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #18 on: September 21, 2018, 04:05:22 am »
or drill a hole in a part for the spacestation and cover it up with a bit of glue
I missed that glue bit and don't see much about it. Where did you read that?

Space station air leak: someone drilled the hole, say Russians

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/sep/05/space-station-air-leak-someone-drilled-the-hole-say-russians?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Copy_to_clipboard

 :)
 

Offline james_s

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #19 on: September 21, 2018, 04:06:00 am »
You can get waterslide decal material that can be laser printed, I've used transparent stuff to make decals for model airplanes.
 

Offline tpowell1830

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #20 on: September 21, 2018, 12:03:49 pm »
I would call around to professional print shops and see what they could do.  Also ask them how to protect the print so this doesn't happen again. If they have no solution for protection, I would find a spray can solution over entire plate of transparent plastic coating of some type. All of this is not cheap, so I would wait and let the manager decide this and offer your solution from shop, i.e. price/time etc. and make them (your company) pay for it. This is normal operating costs, not your fault. Grumpy manager or not this is best way. Then take the plate to the most promising shop.

One thing that you must realize is that grumpy managers are there to handle such matters. If manager gets grumpy because you bring a problem to them, you should not take this as being grumpy to you, you should throw up your grumpy manager shield and do what is right, allow manager to make this decision, but give them some options/solutions. Often, you don't know why managers are grumpy, could be pressure from above or simply a bad disposition.

Hope this helps...
PEACE===>T
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #21 on: September 21, 2018, 03:27:16 pm »
I put one of those small 1U 19" type aluminum front panels from a pcb at work to clean off the yellow dirt and grot on it in our hot wash tank and all the bloody lettering came straight off!!!
...
It was only lettered in ordinary Helvetica lettering and I can easily re–create the label design, but I'm looking for some means of printing them on the panel – I've got a HP colour laser at home & I bought a roll of self–adhesive vinyl from my local craft store – will this melt in the fuser, or is there a special setting for vinyl on the printer?
...
I need to get this sorted somehow before my grumpy Manager gets back on Monday, so ordering online is out of the question!

IMNSHO you would be unwise to try to conceal your cockup.

When I've cocked up, I've instantly openly told my managers. There has been no comeback. It has confirmed that I am an honest employee. If I can say what lead to the cockup and why it won't happen again, so much the better.

When people have tried to conceal things from managers, particularly if they have lied, I have see repurcussions up to and including instant dismissal. The basic problem is that the managers then know that they can't trust you and your integrity.

OTOH it is beneficial that, when you reveal your cockup, you also suggest one or more possible remedial actions.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline james_s

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #22 on: September 21, 2018, 03:30:20 pm »
IMNSHO you would be unwise to try to conceal your cockup.

When I've cocked up, I've instantly openly told my managers. There has been no comeback. It has confirmed that I am an honest employee. If I can say what lead to the cockup and why it won't happen again, so much the better.

When people have tried to conceal things from managers, particularly if they have lied, I have see repurcussions up to and including instant dismissal. The basic problem is that the managers then know that they can't trust you and your integrity.

OTOH it is beneficial that, when you reveal your cockup, you also suggest one or more possible remedial actions.


I would agree there. I have screwed up a few times at work, everybody does sooner or later. I've always told someone right away and have always been commended for doing so rather than trying to sweep it under the rug.
 

Offline Bashstreet

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #23 on: September 21, 2018, 04:47:04 pm »
It is best to fess up and tell what happened.
If the manager is total nutter he will find reason to fire you sooner or later any case.  :-//

I do not know circumstances of your position or the company or people you work with but covering up error can bite you in ass later.
This really is such a minor error that i cannot believe anyone getting fired over it if there really is such risk and the company is run like madhouse maybe you should hide your error....but that just sounds... :wtf:

Best of luck any case keep us posted.  :phew:



« Last Edit: September 21, 2018, 05:14:55 pm by Bashstreet »
 

Offline CJay

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Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #24 on: September 21, 2018, 06:06:32 pm »
Life lessons learned, if you screw up, admit it, own the problem and fix itor at least make sure they know you can, it builds character and earns you respect.
 


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