Author Topic: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!  (Read 3916 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Mr. Scram

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9109
  • Country: 00
  • Display aficionado
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #25 on: September 21, 2018, 06:11:20 pm »
Where is Chris? Did he sell his computer because he lost his job?
 
The following users thanked this post: jancumps

Offline CJay

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3547
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #26 on: September 21, 2018, 06:22:56 pm »
Last seen trying to clean melted sticky backed vinyl out of the office laser printer I think
 
The following users thanked this post: KL27x

Offline TERRA Operative

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 784
  • Country: jp
  • Voider of warranties
    • Near Far Media Youtube
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #27 on: September 22, 2018, 01:26:07 am »
A sign maker could cut out a sticker for you.
You can use the cut out lettering directly and be done, or use the 'negative' of the cutout as a stencil to repaint the lettering onto the panel.
Any circuit design must contain at least one part which is obsolete, two parts which are unobtainable, and three parts which are still under development.

https://www.youtube.com/user/NearFarMedia/
 

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4860
  • Country: ch
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #28 on: September 27, 2018, 04:42:53 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.
They mean industrial inkjet with UV-cure lacquer inks.

Ordinary inkjet uses solvent-based inks (usually water based, but organic solvent based in some industrial inkjets, like the ones used to print expiration dates on jars), so the solvent must evaporate for the ink to cure, which won’t work properly on all materials. Water based inks must absorb into the surface a bit, to prevent wicking and to give the water time to evaporate.

UV-cure lacquer inkjet doesn’t rely on the ink drying at all. Instead, strong UV light cures it. Same principle as dental sealants, UV cure adhesives, etc. The inkjet lacquer droplets just sit on the surface of the object being printed, until the UV light hardens it into a durable dot of colored resin. As such, nearly any surface is printable.
 

Offline Chris56000

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 549
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #29 on: October 25, 2018, 07:51:26 pm »
Hi!

I told my manager that the lettering came off the panel when I tried to clean the yellow grot off it and he told me to try and do the best you can with transfer–lettering!!!

I only finished re–lettering it this morning – it's really awkward because letters you've already done have a habit of lifting off the panel back onto the sheet again, or not going onto the metal panel!

Sometimes I've been able to find another unit cheap to replace accidently–damaged cosmetic parts in the original but not this time!

Chris Williams

It's an enigma that's what it is!! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!!
 
The following users thanked this post: Mr. Scram

Offline metrologist

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1832
  • Country: 00
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #30 on: October 25, 2018, 08:07:40 pm »
Something like a cheap 3D printer fitted with a plotter pen? Maybe even just the first layer of plastic would do?

I ruined one of my stainless steel rulers by trying to clean it with isopropyl alcohol.
 

Offline Mr. Scram

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9109
  • Country: 00
  • Display aficionado
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #31 on: October 25, 2018, 08:11:05 pm »
Something like a cheap 3D printer fitted with a plotter pen? Maybe even just the first layer of plastic would do?

I ruined one of my stainless steel rulers by trying to clean it with isopropyl alcohol.
Now you have a very accurate steel blank. ;D I wouldn't have thought that'd be an issue.
 

Offline Gyro

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 5502
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #32 on: October 25, 2018, 08:18:48 pm »
Hi!

I told my manager that the lettering came off the panel when I tried to clean the yellow grot off it and he told me to try and do the best you can with transfer–lettering!!!

I only finished re–lettering it this morning – it's really awkward because letters you've already done have a habit of lifting off the panel back onto the sheet again, or not going onto the metal panel!

Sometimes I've been able to find another unit cheap to replace accidently–damaged cosmetic parts in the original but not this time!

Chris Williams

The secret with transfer lettering is to burnish them down to the panel with the backing paper that comes with the sheet and a blunt instrument (eg. back of a teaspoon). They won't lift off again then.


@metrologist:

At least it was a really cheap stainless steel rule.  ;)
Chris

"Victor Meldrew, the Crimson Avenger!"
 

Offline tooki

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4860
  • Country: ch
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #33 on: October 25, 2018, 09:28:00 pm »
Something like a cheap 3D printer fitted with a plotter pen? Maybe even just the first layer of plastic would do?

I ruined one of my stainless steel rulers by trying to clean it with isopropyl alcohol.
Crazy!!! You’d think that they’d use solvent-resistant lacquers. (What brand, so I don’t ever buy it by mistake?) All my stainless rulers have engraved or etched markings filled with paint, and it never occurred to me that that isn’t universal!
 

Offline metrologist

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1832
  • Country: 00
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #34 on: October 25, 2018, 09:29:59 pm »
@metrologist:

At least it was a really cheap stainless steel rule.  ;)

Twas Helix brand and old school from when they were made in USA, so that surprised me. Now they are made in China and are cheap. There is a professional version at WalMart for $20, but I will pass. I have etched precision rulers (machinist scales) for when it will matter.
 
The following users thanked this post: tooki

Offline Chris56000

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 549
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #35 on: October 26, 2018, 09:55:35 am »
Hi!

Quote

Last seen trying to clean melted sticky backed vinyl out of the office laser printer I think

Not so – I ain't daft enough to try anything like that on corporate machines – I've got my own at home to try with, altho' I used transfer lettering in the end!

I'm showing the result to the manager who QA's my repairs on Monday!! (I'll report back what he said!!)

Chris Williams

PS!

I'm pleased this thread is providing entertainment for everyone!! We all make mistakes, or the unexpected happens that causes official bother –realtricant or grumpy electronics is no respecter of gear, wether it's your own or you're repairing it in the course of employment as I was, and these things KNOW – if they can find a way of getting the most careful and dilligent employee stuck in it, they will!
« Last Edit: October 26, 2018, 05:57:23 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!!
 

Online SilverSolder

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1653
  • Country: 00
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #36 on: October 27, 2018, 02:41:23 am »

This is a good way to make decals for an instrument, if you ever need to do a "pro" job:

https://decalprofx.com/Vertical/2_EXAMPLES/2c_Customer_Photos/Customer_Examples.html
 

Offline PaulAm

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 700
  • Country: us
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #37 on: October 29, 2018, 01:19:41 pm »
Have you tried those?

Getting the entire setup is somewhat expensive (~ $100 US or so) and the process is very labor intensive.

When it works it is quite impressive, but after a lot of effort I had about a 20% success rate.

I was in a bind because I needed white lettering and the only economic ways to do that were Profx or an Alps printer (when I say economic, I mean spending less than several hundred US dollars).  I finally ended up using some white dry transfer lettering.  I just found the Profx too frustrating to deal with.

At this point I am cleaning the aluminum front panel for an old R2R tape deck and I am very concerned about lifting the labeling (that's the kind of mistake you should only make once  ;D)  It looks like it was dipped in a vat of cigarette tar but is coming clean with careful work and some SimpleGreen.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2018, 01:23:25 pm by PaulAm »
 

Online SilverSolder

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1653
  • Country: 00
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #38 on: October 31, 2018, 04:38:38 am »

Yes, I have the kit and also found it has a learning curve. You need more stuff than just this kit...   you need the right kind of printer, and a good laminator, not to mention some kind of software for creating high resolution artwork.  All of these things take time and practice to get the best out of...   but it is quite enjoyable if you like doing graphics arts! 

I had several email exchanges and phone calls with the company (I think I was talking to the inventor of the system, he was that knowledgeable) before buying the kit. 

The whole process (whether used for PCBs or artwork) is critically dependent on getting a print with a nice, heavy layer of the right kind of toner on to the transfer paper.  Not all toners give good results, not all printers lay it down thick enough.  The supplier recommended two methods:  either (1) print the artwork on any printer, then use a Canon personal copier to make the toner version, or (2) use an older HP laserjet e.g. a LJ 2200 or 2300 to print the artwork using original HP toner cartridges.  Either of these are cheap on eBay.

I tried both and found the Canon copier does not provide the same resolution as the laser printer, but if ultimate resolution is not important then it works fine.

It was a bit of a project to find the right driver from the HP web site that would actually deliver full 1200dpi resolution from the older printers under Windows 7,  but once everything was dialed in -  the output is outstanding, and the toner transfer paper is 100% effective at applying it to whatever you're working on.

A completely different method for making instrument panels could be to use a vinyl cutter to cut the artwork out directly from adhesive backed vinyl.  I haven't tried that yet, but have recently acquired a cutter (with its own learning curve, of course) and it easily cuts precisely enough to make letters, numbers, and other graphics for a panel - in any colour (and white).  This process also has a learning curve, of course.  The most important part is probably to learn to enjoy the learning!
 
 

Offline CJay

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3547
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #39 on: October 31, 2018, 06:38:38 am »
Hi!

Quote

Last seen trying to clean melted sticky backed vinyl out of the office laser printer I think

Not so – I ain't daft enough to try anything like that on corporate machines – I've got my own at home to try with, altho' I used transfer lettering in the end!

Heh, excellent. It's been useful seeing all the suggestions, some Idea's I've not seen before.

Pleased you sorted it out and didn't get grief for it, hopefully it passes QA.
 

Offline Chris56000

  • Frequent Contributor
  • **
  • Posts: 549
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #40 on: October 31, 2018, 10:53:36 am »
Hi!

Just a quick update to let everyone know my manager passed QA on that job and didn't say anything about the remade front–panel lettering, so it's now gone back to the Customer, who hopefully won't notice one or two of the individual letters skew–whiff here and there a bit!!!

Chris Williams
« Last Edit: October 31, 2018, 10:55:28 am by Chris56000 »
It's an enigma that's what it is!! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!!
 
The following users thanked this post: CJay

Offline Conrad Hoffman

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1247
  • Country: us
    • The Messy Basement
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #41 on: October 31, 2018, 05:52:49 pm »
If you ever have to do it again, here's how I do it-
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/projects/lettering-panels-with-a-leroy-guide/
 
The following users thanked this post: CJay

Offline CJay

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3547
  • Country: gb
Re: HELP!!! Cleaned Aluminium Front Panel and all the lettering came off!!!
« Reply #42 on: November 01, 2018, 10:51:41 am »
If you ever have to do it again, here's how I do it-
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/projects/lettering-panels-with-a-leroy-guide/

Very interesting Conrad, I like that technique, do you know if there were different fonts and sizes or was there a trick to get different sizes from one guide (like a pantograph copying device)?

*edit* answered my own question, plenty of different fonts and I think, no trick for sizes other than a new guide.

Still nice but not as flexible as I'd hoped, a little expensive too once P&P is added as most sets, while quite cheap, come from the 'states so cost more to post than buy.
« Last Edit: November 01, 2018, 11:01:07 am by CJay »
 


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf