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  #1  
Old 08-22-2013, 01:27 PM
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Default DIY Tig cooler

I finally built a watercooler for my Dynasty 200dx. After watching quite a few of Jody's videos, I decided to get a shorty #7 gas lens. My local welding supply was out of parts for my air cooled torch, but while searching they let me in to the back room/parts room. I noticed a CK20-25-Flex sitting on the shelf and asked about consumables for it- they had them and would knock $20 off the best online price I found.... soooo way too much money later, I now had a watercooled torch and no cooler. Before I sold my sycrowave, I had bought 2 Procon pumps and motors- so I decided to make a cooler.

After a bunch of reading- I decided to make a temporary cooler to start. Just using a pump, large 5gal water reservoir, and the necessary fittings. I tried to find a set of 5/8 - 18 LHT to 1/4NPT adapters for the torch water lines locally, but gave up after 5 stores. I ended up ordering them off arczone. Once I assembled everything, I dry ran it and found my first mistake- I had ordered the wrong pump style. Mine are 130 psi with no regulator. Most coolers run a Procon 1 series 250psi adjustable pressure with intake screen. Ooops. To make it work I added a T on the output and restricted the flow down to where the pump no longer leaked under load... haha.

At first I ran it with just the reservoir, but as I started welding heavy cast aluminum it started to heat up more then I liked. I grabbed a spare heatercore and soldered some fittings on. A cheap 120v fan later and much better! I also ordered a SS roasting pan to turn in to my reservoir and found the correct pump off eBay for $40. Eventually it will all get assembled in to a nice compact unit- until then this torch is amazing. No more burnt fingers or non flexible gas line.
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Old 08-22-2013, 01:28 PM
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More pics.


Prices:
Procon 130psi pump and 1/3rd HP motor- $40
Procon 250psi adjustable pump-bare $40
Arczone 5/8 fittings $16 shipped
Brass fittings $30 (I bought way to many),
Electrical (GFCI, box, ect) $30
Roasting pan $24 (I splurged)
Hose- Had
Torch and two sets of consumables $120
Heatercore from a 93 RX7- Had
PSI gauge $14

Just around $200 for the cooler, not too bad.
I'm planning on adding temp and pressure gauges here when they show up.
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Old 08-23-2013, 01:15 PM
FabberMcGee FabberMcGee is offline
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Looks like a fun project. Amazing how sweet a little water cooled torch is, ain't it.

I don't understand why your pump was leaking. You shouldn't have any pressure to speak of. Maybe you have too much volume and need an adjustable bypass to cut it down. Be sure you don't cut it too much. The plastic power cable hose will melt if you lose flow. I've ruined a few of them over the past 30 years. Usually from a plugged screen.

My cooler was a piss poor antique Miller from the very early days of tig, I'm guessing early 60's or late 50's. It came with my used Lincoln TIG 300/300 and I just used it because I had it. It didn't have a radiator either, just a reservoir. I added a small condenser and fan from an old refrigeration unit (seems like it was a water cooler)to help it out.

Keep us posted on your progress.

I just got my tig machine back from the repair shop and have vowed to not use the old cooler again. Like you, I'd like to build one. But if time gets short like it usually does around here, I may just pull the nice Bernard cooler off my old Cobra-Matic push pull feeder that hasn't been used in 15 years.
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:53 PM
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Neat Project....

I have built a few over the years

you probably want to regulate your water pressure to no more than 60 psi...

that is where Miller sets their Coolmates...

http://www.millerwelds.com/om/o624x_mil.pdf

Bernard/Weldcraft coolers run @ 50 psi

http://weldingdirect.com/ber25coolcir.html

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Last edited by H80N; 08-23-2013 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 08-23-2013, 03:12 PM
garageguy1975 garageguy1975 is offline
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I put a Procon pump on mine after I checked prices for parts to the original Oberdorfer pump. I could have bought 4 Procon pumps for what a couple gears and shafts cost for the Oberdorfer.

To get 1qt/minute flow, I set the pressure at about 60 psi.
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:17 PM
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Well... this weekend did not go quite as planned. It rained Sunday morning and I decided to put together Rev 2.0 of my cooler. I bought a "new" Procon pump off ebay and a baking pan off amazon. Everything was going great until I tried adjusting the pressure. I blew up both my pressure gauges and my heatercore. Thankfully I had a transmission cooler and the old pump. For some reason, this pump either operates at 50psi unloaded (just running in to a bucket) or 250+psi loaded (with the torch connected). The adjustment did nothing and I'm out $30 for two pressure gauges. The pump was also obviously used... I'm going to contact the seller. I rigged it back up with the new cooler/old pump for now.

I do love having a nut riveter now.
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Last edited by the spyder; 08-26-2013 at 03:29 PM.
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:18 PM
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At some point I will make brackets for the cooler and power. For now, it works fine. My 120v fan and new gauges should get here this week too.
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Last edited by the spyder; 08-26-2013 at 03:25 PM.
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:36 PM
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Sorry to hear about your troubles..

all of the ones that I have used in the past had the pressure setting stamped right into the brass pump body..

looks like a Procon Series 1 pump

http://www.proconpumps.com/products/Series-1-Pump.html

the Miller Coolmate 4 manual has instructions to adjust the internal relief valve in FIG 6-3 on page 10

http://www.millerwelds.com/om/o624x_mil.pdf

Hope this helps..
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:46 PM
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You may have too heavy a relief valve spring.. or bypass spring..

may have to get one rated for 60psi

http://www.piecesml.com/english/en-p...tric_icon.html
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:59 PM
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Thanks H80N, here is the pump's model number: http://www.amazon.com/Procon-111A100.../dp/B0099TTFLS
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