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Suggestions Quieting a LOUD Colex SharpCut vac table?

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by tedbragg, May 15, 2020.

  1. tedbragg

    tedbragg New Member

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    We have a 5x10 Sharpcut, and with the shop being so small, it's SUPER LOUD! Anybody with tips on muffling/quieting this beast? I've been looking at the acoustic foam squares on Amazon, and I'm a mind to cover the walls around the table, but what about applying foam to the inside of the exterior access/cosmetic panels? My poor ears can't take anymore earplugs and my boss doesn't like having to yell for me :)
     
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  2. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    Ear plugs are the worst! Get some of these! I use them mostly for mowing, but initially got them for the CNC table. Every once in a while I have to double check that grass is being cut, because I can't tell if the blade is going.
    Edit: Forgot to mention, all the cheapy headphones tended to hurt after extended periods of wear. These are drastically more comfortable than the cheap nonbluetooth versions, fwiw.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Raum Divarco

    Raum Divarco Application Specialist CWT / Amcad & Graphics

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    If this is an older model, it is possible that the box for the motors has come apart.
    If this bothers you enough you could consider extending the wires and the hoses to move the vac motor boxes farther away.
    the exhausting pipes at the end could also be routed farther out to reduce noise.
    If your machine has the oscillating tool you could also purchase PET acoustic felt and cut/build your own sound deadening box.
    I would not recommend covering your ears as much as possible.
    In many machining applications sound is one of the most important variables.
    it is better to reduce the noise that is bothering you first.
    are there any other issues that you have with the machine?
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
  4. MGB_LE

    MGB_LE Member

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    We've struggled with the same. We have made earplugs available to those in other areas, if they choose. When it comes to routing acrylic, we just grin and bear it. My operator wears hearing protection when routing, or using the oscillating tool for a length of time. We though about acoustic panels as well, but they're cumbersome and won't fit well in our space.
     
  5. Raum Divarco

    Raum Divarco Application Specialist CWT / Amcad & Graphics

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    the oscillating tool on the Colex machines are quite loud due to the engineering and metal on metal sound.
    For routing, usually a good sign of cutting acrylic is quiet.
    You will need to determine if your excessive sound is due to the material contact with the blade of if it is debris in the spindle altering the balance during rotation.
    The longer the bit, especially unnecessarily CEL cutting edge length, will cause extra noise due to vibration.
    Your colex machine does have the benefit of low RPM operation and a variety of collets to use.
    While they are a competitor, i would advise you to look at your dieline.
    Can you get away with a 8mm CED DLC coated bit?
    this is a bit wider than standard 6mm but you can cut in 1 pass at a relatively decent edge quality.
    Invest in cleaning your spindle and look at the coated tooling.
    the Superior coated 6mm bits are good.

    You will also need to look at the material.
    some have a lower melting point etc.
    There isn't a general rule saying you need to use the highest rpm to "continually "mulch" debris while generating hear and wear.
    Take the time to set up 6" lines to cut on centerline with varying feed rates and RPM.
    make notes on material and adjust your tool library when applicable.
    If you have more questions, everyone is welcome to email me.
    raumdivarco@cwtworktoolsusa.com
    As a former end-user i take all of these things into account to improve our machines and software offering.
    I do like sharing information and helping the community.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. tedbragg

    tedbragg New Member

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    Sorry y’all, I was asking about ways to quiet the vacuums, not the routing or knife tools. We cut a crap-ton of coroplast on it, but rarely rout anymore. The 6 table suction vacs are deafening...that’s what I want to hush
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2020
  7. player

    player Major Contributor

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    Earmuffs and earplugs won't protect your ears really. I bet those vacs are at 120 db. my chainsaw is 116 but I suspect it's louder. See that pair of 3M earmuffs above this post? They say 29db on them. If you think they lower the db by 29db they don't. That's 29 NRR. The way to calculate the db reduction
    is 29 - 7 / 2 = 11db reduction. If your vacs are 120db, the muffs will bring it down -11db to 109db. Way too loud.

    So lets add a set of 30db foam plugs under the muffs. The amount of additional protection you can get is an additional -5db reduction. So the most you can reduce the db with the 29db muffs and the 30db foam plugs is 11db + 5db= 16db.

    NRR is the north American rating. In Europe they use NSR. It is 6db higher.
    So a 30db NRR rating = 36db NSR.
     
  8. rjssigns

    rjssigns Major Contributor

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    Try putting some glasspack mufflers on the exhaust. Get the longest ones you can find with 2" or so inlet/outlet and make up a mounting flange. I'm serious.
    Like this:https://www.fleetfarm.com/detail/maremont-cherry-bomb-glasspack-muffler-87516/0000000041610?Ntt=glasspack muffler

    I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn either. Used to work with ring blowers on splicing equipment. Mufflers we used looked exactly like the old Smithy's glasspacks only painted blue.
    Like this: https://www.summitracing.com/parts/...MI-sLlzOK46QIViYbACh01gA3_EAQYAiABEgLmrvD_BwE

    Noise reduction will be anybodies guess, but it's a start and it will temper that piercing whine.
     
  9. zspace

    zspace Merchant Member

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    There are commercially available mufflers. We have one on our Gerber. It brings down the volume quite a bit. Most vacuums have a threaded port to add it. Also consider a $15 decibel meter from amazon to make sure your operators have the right equipment. There are probably some similar apps for smart phones that will give you a good idea of what you need.
     
  10. Notarealsignguy

    Notarealsignguy Very Active Member

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  11. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    Wait, the vacuum table is exhausting into the same room? Hell the blower/vacuum is in the same room? How much do you want to spend on this is the real question. I'd plan on routing the exhaust, and ideally the entire blower outside.
     
  12. WYLDGFI

    WYLDGFI Merchant Member

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    We have the same issue....just wear ear plugs and ear mufflers.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. tedbragg

    tedbragg New Member

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    Yep, the exhaust for the Colex is tucked under that big thing. We're looking into sound-absorption panels underneath and making DIY mufflers for it. Aftermarket muffs and such are either too big or won't knock the noise down enough. Can't feed the exhaust to the outside -- walls can't be cut thru :-( THAT would be ideal, tho!
     
  14. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    How about the roof? I know it sounds sarcastic, but that's how mine is routed. Amazingly enough, with very little maintenance (other than replacing belts) the area has never developed a leak, and it's been up and running for 30 years...
     
  15. MGB_LE

    MGB_LE Member

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    Had no idea about that/had forgotten about that until I came back to this thread. Sex little mufflers under there, but still loud.
     
  16. greysquirrel

    greysquirrel Active Member

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    Funny..One of the reasons I purchased the Colex is that it is quieter than other routers...Ours is in the warehouse...We open the garage door to help dissipate noise...
     
  17. WYLDGFI

    WYLDGFI Merchant Member

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    Im actually going to speak to my landlord about putting exhaust vents thru the roll up door where ours is located. Im thinking that will vent all that outside and help with the noise. Doubtful though the landlord will allow a hole cut in the door...
     
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