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Young Gun
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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm in the midst of rebuilding some '86 carbs and have been reading up on different ways to go about cleaning them. I came to the conclusion that I wanted to try ultrasonic cleaning and found a cheapish one at Harbor Freight.

The question I have is, What kind of cleaning solution should I use? Scouring the internets turned up many answers from dish soap to ammonia to vinegar. Some say Simple Green or citrus based. On this site a guy tries a few different things to clean brass ammo casings.

I guess a more important question is what solutions should be avoided? (could damage carbs or the cleaner itself)


P.S. I picked up the ultrasonic cleaner this weekend and put the carbs in with just distilled water to quench my curiosity. There was definitely action and the water soon turned cloudy with oil and gunk.
 

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Into the Darkness
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272 Posts
I've never done that before, but where did you buy cleaner, and what was the cost of it? It sounds like it could be expensive, but if not I'd be almost tempted to give it a try.
 

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Young Gun
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Discussion Starter #3

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Ultrasonic Cleaning Solution for Carburetors

I use OmegaClean for my carburetors as opposed to some homemade concoction. It removes oil, grease, carbon and other contaminants better than aerosol solvents and hand-cleaning. I like it because the cleaner's buffers protect aluminum finishes and its silicates guard against flash rusting.

Hope that helps,

Frank
 

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Into the Darkness
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Super Moderator
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I'd use SeaFoam. If no plastic or rubber parts are being cleaned, you can just use Gumout carb cleaner. You just want want something safe for the carb, as the "cleaning" is being done by the machine, not the solution.
I would not use water however...

KM
 

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Banned
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448 Posts
From what I read from the description, you should use cleaner made for that type cleaner. If you are using any type of solvent, read up on the flash point.
It also said you can use it with or w/o heat, but IMO I think heat would help clean better. I will do a search alter to see if I can find something that would work in it, and I will post the findings.
I'm going to have to get one of those.
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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The cleaning powder that is advertised with the ultrasonic cleaner is said to be suitable for jewelery and waterproof watches, BUT NOT FOR ALUMINUM AND MAGNESIUM ALLOYS.
http://www.harborfreight.com/6-oz-ultrasonic-cleaning-powder-91593.html

I agree that a high flashpoint solvent is probably the best cleaning medium for carb and general automotive or motorcyle use. KM`s specific suggestion for Seafoam or Gumout carb cleaner seem sound to me. Not sure I would use the heater with solvent though. I guess it depends how hot the solution gets.:confused:
 

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Young Gun
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213 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
The cleaning powder that is advertised with the ultrasonic cleaner is said to be suitable for jewelery and waterproof watches, BUT NOT FOR ALUMINUM AND MAGNESIUM ALLOYS.
http://www.harborfreight.com/6-oz-ultrasonic-cleaning-powder-91593.html
Ooo, nice catch there, I almost grabbed that powder when I bought the Ultrasonic Cleaner (UC). I do like the idea for using Seafoam (what can't it do?) but filling the UC with it would be pretty costly...

What does anyone think of this: I had also picked up a gallon can of ChemDip, I'm thinking, soak the parts in ChemDip overnight, then put em in the UC with a solution of Simple Green and Distilled water. Should loosen all the junk up then "vibrate" it all off? Finish with water rinse and compressed air dry?

Obviously I'm a little lazy, but also just want to get them as clean as possible while they're out.

-Also, got all the o-rings on order from ronayers.com
 

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Young Gun
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213 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
an update on this...

For most parts I have been doing: Chemdip soak, heated Simple Green Ultrasonic Clean, water rinse, compressed air dry. It's been working great as far as I can tell. Though, after the Chemdip the parts are already pretty clean.

I skipped the Chemdip for the central float chamber because it has plastic elbows and went straight to the heated Simple Green. Wow! You can really see the reaction and all the junk just kinda floats away in a murky haze. So much so the the SG solution was soon too dark to see through. When I pulled the float chamber out it looked just as clean as the other parts I used the carb cleaner on.

I guess the difference is that all the other parts where pretty clean from the Chemdip and there was not much for the UC to react with.

So far the only real hand cleaning I've done is to scrape all the brown junk stuck where the o-rings sit.
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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How concentrated is your SG solution?
How hot does the ultrasound solution get with the heater turned on?
 

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Young Gun
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Discussion Starter #12
The bottle I bought said mix 1:1 for "heavy" cleaning. I probably mixed it just a bit weaker than that. It gets to around 120*F
 
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