Ultrasonic Chip Cleaning

Discussion in 'Poker Chip Maintenance' started by ski_ex5, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. Jun 2, 2017 at 2:03 PM
    Gear

    Gear Flush Site Vendor

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    Here are my thoughts

    1. 2L is too small. I think 3L works about as well as 6L, but you'd need to change the cleaning solution more frequently.

    2. From within the US, I'd go with something in the $100-$150 range from Amazon. The brand doesn't seem to matter much; they are all pretty much the same. I would strongly recommend looking for a unit with a drain valve at the bottom -- mine doesn't have this and I really wish it did!

    3. TSP for sure. Oxi-Clean defeats the purpose of an ultrasonic cleaner.

    4. 30 seconds to 3 minutes, depending on what type of chip you're cleaning and how dirty it is. Lightly used RHC are super fast; super-grimy LCV take a lot longer. Keep the temperature around 100° F or 40° C -- otherwise you risk damaging certain colors. Watch out for pinks and purples, especially. Water that is too hot will fade them permanently.

    5. I like to presoak chips in room-temperature water, just to get them wet and start softening the bigger chunks of grime. Don't use heat or detergent on this step.

    6. Yes, lots of rinsing. I like to lay out about 20 on a old towel, pat with a towel to get the big drops of water off, then lay them out on another towel for 24 hours or so to let them dry fully.
     
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  2. Jun 2, 2017 at 2:29 PM
    Psypher1000

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    Previously summarized here: https://www.pokerchipforum.com/threads/ultrasonic-chip-cleaning.1691/

    For my experiences with it, go here: https://www.pokerchipforum.com/threads/psyphers-adventures-with-chip-cleaning.5935/

    For an ultrasonic cleaner, don't get one with any less than 120w cleaning power; heating power is largely irrelevant as long as you pre-heat the water in the microwave as discussed in the above threads. This one is the one I currently use: http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Stainle...id=100005&rk=6&rkt=6&mehot=lo&sd=162104006643

    This one also may do you fine: http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Stainle...006643?hash=item25be26d7f3:g:GocAAOSwNuxXYDau
     
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  3. Jun 2, 2017 at 3:12 PM
    AWenger

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    You can't go wrong with anything @Gear or @Psypher1000 said above. Here's some info from my experience & photos from a batch I cleaned last week:
    https://www.pokerchipforum.com/threads/the-20-chip-pr0n-thread.20091/page-3#post-380996

    What size cleaner do you think I will need? 2L, 3L, 6L? What model (budget) would you recommend and from where?
    If you don't plan on cleaning large sets with 600 chips in the future, a 3L model might work fine. I bought a 6 Liter model from Ebay for around $115. It has 180 W, drain pipe, temperature gauge, heater (which I don't usually need). http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-6L-Ultr...593800?hash=item41c4adb988:g:svEAAOSwfpVZFD2u The 6L size unit fits well in the bottom cabinets in a kitchen, and I'd say it takes up the space of around 2 large cereal boxes turned on their side, maybe slightly more.

    What chemical to clean them? TSP?
    TSP, either the 'real' kind or the 'fake' kind with no phosphates. I got mine in the paint/paint cleaner aisle in an hardware store. I use about 1 to 2 Tablespoons per batch of 4 L of water (mine's a 6L model, filled 2/3 of the way with water). You can probably use less if chips aren't too dirty. Start with a small amount, and test on your own. Be careful with this cleaner - even at these dilutions, splashes of the cleaning water can permanently etch glass, floors, or other surfaces. Kind of like a permanent water spot that doesn't go away. If you're using on a surface you care about, place towels on surfaces around the unit, as necessary.

    How long and at what temperature?
    I find somewhere between 2 to 4 miutes works best for really dirty chips, 20 to 30 chips at a time, with gentle constant [edit: or intermittent] stirring (or salad spinner method). I've settled on a temp around 35 deg C / 95 degrees F. I try to keep it to such a temp that I can still remove chips by hand, if needed at the end of the cycle.

    Presoak or no presoak?
    If chips are really old, cruddy, with lots of dirt in crevices and on the surface, then presoak. Otherwise, may not be necessary. I use very warm water with a little dish soap for presoak, and if there are any large chunks of dirt built up on the face of chips, I scrape these off with my fingernail after the presoak.

    Rinse with water afterward and let them out to dry?
    Yes. I use another large bowl/salad spinner with clean, cold, water, that the chips go into after cleaning. Rinse well, then lay chips out on a towel to dry completely, I've sometimes used a fan for quicker drying.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2017
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  4. Jun 2, 2017 at 3:17 PM
    upNdown

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    All good advice and if you're going that route, go for it. But 700 chips is totally doable by hand. You don't NEED an ultrasonic. Then again, none of us NEED all these chips . . .
     
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  5. Jun 2, 2017 at 3:28 PM
    Psypher1000

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    Shut your mouth right this minute!
     
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  6. Jun 2, 2017 at 3:49 PM
    Gear

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    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention ultrasonic power vs heater power. As mentioned, heater power is way less important. Get as much ultrasonic power as you can find.
     
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  7. Jun 2, 2017 at 4:39 PM
    codeman00

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    You guys are great. Thank you!
     
  8. Jun 2, 2017 at 4:43 PM
    WedgeRock

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  9. Jun 10, 2017 at 10:14 AM
    codeman00

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    If I'm only cleaning 20-30 chips at a time, how often do I change out the water / TSP if I have several racks of chips to clean?
     
  10. Jun 10, 2017 at 10:16 AM
    Psypher1000

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    Never.

    Seriously, never. I've cleaned up to 1k chips in a session, never needed to change the water.
     
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  11. Jun 10, 2017 at 10:21 AM
    David O

    David O Moderator

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    Only time I have ever changed it is if I have a light colored chips to clean. I always clean lightest color chips to darkest. I generally can get 1000 chips clean but ill change the water when it starts getting too foamy. Also make sure you use distilled water. Yes it does make a difference
     
  12. Jun 10, 2017 at 5:05 PM
    codeman00

    codeman00 Two Pair

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    Thank you all, my first ultrasonic Chip cleaning turned out pretty well. The chips look really nice for the most part! The toughest part was scrubbing the gunk off before they went into the cleaner.

    There was one exception though that some of the white spot patterns are still a bit yellow...kind of like a white shirt that you spilled motor oil on and tried to wash. I'm not sure if I should worry about it or not but it was interesting that those white spots on some chips didn't turn fully white.
     
  13. Jun 10, 2017 at 5:13 PM
    Psypher1000

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    There's no need to do this. The cleaner will remove most of the roaches for you. Hose that it doesn't remove during cleaning can be very easily rubbed off post cleaning.

    As for the yellowish white spots, sometimes that just happens with time and use. It's possible that a bath with some oxy will help whiten them, but if that doesn't do it then you may just be left with time-stained
     
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  14. Jun 10, 2017 at 5:16 PM
    codeman00

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    It was mentioned above in the thread so that's why I scrubbed on the chips before the ultrasonic bath. Oh well. I'll know for next time.
     
  15. Jun 12, 2017 at 1:41 PM
    codeman00

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    If I remove Gear labels, will the ultrasonic cleaner remove the adhesive residue?
     
  16. Jun 12, 2017 at 1:43 PM
    justsomedude

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    I've never tried... but it's a good question.
     
  17. Jun 13, 2017 at 9:05 AM
    BGinGA

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    No.
     
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  18. Aug 1, 2017 at 10:29 AM
    Grosminet

    Grosminet New Member

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    Having read all this thread and more . It is valid for the ASM / CPC or nly Paulson chips ?
     
  19. Aug 1, 2017 at 11:14 AM
    Psypher1000

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    Useful for BCC and Paulsons. Can also be used with the TRK chip material, but sometimes water may seep under the inlay covering so be careful with them. ASM/CPC chips tend to be a bit more fragile when it comes to cleaning materials. I know Oxy will eventually dissolve ASM/CPC chips, but I don't remember how TSP/sodium metasillicate affects them.
     
  20. Aug 1, 2017 at 6:51 PM
    Grosminet

    Grosminet New Member

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    Thanks Psyher1000 ;) . But After reading the components of the TPS there not only some sodium metasillicate. According to a dugstore dealer specialized in chemistry, the sodium metasillicate has no properties cleaning, It's more a binding agent between the other components which compound the TSP (Silicic Acid and Disodium salt).

    The Lundmark product are not sold in France. I look for a similar product to the TPS for tests on ASM chips.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2017
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  21. Aug 3, 2017 at 11:02 AM
    pokerman

    pokerman New Member

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    Great forum and anyone use this method on bud jones chips, namely the caesar at sea chips, i clean them by hand but noticed the "sticker inlay" i see the top protective film "flaking" off, and wondering if these chips are safe in the ultrasonic cleaning process and do not want to inlay to be ruined or might have to get chips labels from Gear which I am not prepared to do. Any info or feedback would be great. Also if any one has any caesar at sea chips that they are looking to unload or sell please let me know
     
  22. Sep 28, 2017 at 1:07 AM
    v1pe

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    Did you ever end up finding a decent cleaner for ASM chips? I have a load of them and am tired of cleaning by hand...considering investing in an ultrasonic machine.
     
  23. Sep 28, 2017 at 1:14 AM
    BGinGA

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    Any non-suds cleaner should work, provided it doesn't contain tsp or anything like it. I'd try something like simple green or maybe even an Ajax solution on a couple of beater ASM chips (without ultrasonic) to see what affect they have, and if they foam up or not. Don't want any bubbles in the ultrasonic, as they kill the sound wave cleaning action.
     
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  24. Sep 28, 2017 at 7:46 PM
    Grosminet

    Grosminet New Member

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    Having to discuss with David of the site CPC, the best solution is to clean the ASM/CPC,

    He say :
    So for me i think the best solution and not aggresive for chip ASM/CPC it's, Sonic Cleaner and/or Warm Soapy Water :)
     
  25. Sep 28, 2017 at 11:11 PM
    WedgeRock

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    Deleted.
     
  26. Oct 1, 2017 at 8:42 PM
    v1pe

    v1pe Two Pair

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    Anyone order a salad spinner off of Amazon? Seems all of the silver/blue ultrasonic cleaners are pretty much the same. I'm looking at this one:

    VEVOR Commercial Ultrasonic Cleaner 6L Heated Ultrasonic Cleaner with Digital Timer Jewelry Watch Glasses Cleaner Large Capacity Cleaner Solution https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HGNYO0U/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_jxy0zbT58PX2H

    Would like to also find a salad spinner with lid that fits.
     
  27. Oct 1, 2017 at 10:39 PM
    CHP TD

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    Ive tried with and without sodium.jpg . Dont even bother trying without . Seriously!

    Dunno how it works it just does
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2017
  28. Oct 3, 2017 at 11:42 PM
    v1pe

    v1pe Two Pair

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    So it turns out there's like 12 version of "Simple Green" cleaner. Any thoughts on which one would work well and be the least likely to damage ASM chips?
     
  29. Oct 3, 2017 at 11:47 PM
    v1pe

    v1pe Two Pair

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    BTW - anyone tried cleaning CC's (Majestic's, Milano's, newer Dunes) via ultrasonic?
     
  30. Oct 11, 2017 at 1:30 PM
    v1pe

    v1pe Two Pair

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    Regarding ASM chips. Last night I ultrasonic cleaned (salad spinner method) about 500 of the hot stamped CSQ solids I picked up from a craigslist find. Most of them pink, some yellows. I did a 6L solution with 1/2 cup of Simple Green Pro HD (purple color liquid). 3 minute soak, 2 barrels at a time. They cleaned really well and I didn't notice any color loss or hot stamp damage as compared to the few hundred that I hand scrubbed vigorously with dawn and warm water and a scrub brush. They should look even better after a light oiling.

    Previous to having the ultrasonic cleaner or the Simple Green Pro HD, I tried cleaning with about a 6:1 solution of Mean Green cleaner. I just put these in a jar and stirred with warm water. They cleaned up well, but they lightened up considerably. It could have been a case of too strong a solution of Mean Green, but I'll stick with the Simple Green Pro HD and the ultrasonic method from now on.