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Needle and Tool Heat Sterilizing Experiment


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#1 Jinroh

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 06:38 PM

I know I do not have to go into why heat sterilization is important for needles and hoops and cutting tools, but after an accidental SAB alcohol vapor ignition (no one hurt, no equipment damage, just scary blue flames) I started thinking about a safer way to do this without flame or sparks. With a SAB the only way to sterilize is either have the flame source in the SAB or just outside of it. Being outside presents a risk of contamination on the way into the box and if you have a sealed box with gloves that is not an option. So what could I do? Being an engineer I started thinking about magnetic induction. How about a coil of heavy gauge wire around a high temp glass tube? The coil would not get hot and the glass could be removed for sterilization and also keep the tools from contacting the coils which could burn the coil insulation? The only thing that would get hot would be the metal object in the coil. This would not guarantee any ignition of flammable vapors but it would be way safer than having an open flame under your arms all the time. This would also be great for a flow hood since you could keep it in the airstream because there is no flame to put out!

I have already designed a small DC high-speed magnetic oscillator circuit and coil and have tested it with my lab power supply. It can heat a needle red hot in 5 seconds on 5 volts and if I crank the voltage up to 12 volts it will heat a 3/8" bolt red hot in the same amount of time. The only problem I encountered so far is power adjustment. The power must be adjusted for the thickness of metal. I tried 12 volts on a needle and it pretty much vaporized in two seconds, but 5 volts was perfect for needles and hoops. I had to bump it to 8 volts for larger scalpels and such. Not a real issue in my opinion once you get used to it.

 

Any thoughts? Comments? I have searched for inductive sterilizers of this small size online and have found nothing. The only thing I have seen that even comes close to it is the infrared needle sterilizers and they have to warm up, use a lot of power and get hot as F***! Wouldn't it be nice to have a small on-demand heat source that remains cold to the touch no matter what and does not have to be warmed up and barely uses 20 watts of power and small enough to be placed directly in front of a flow hood? Or am I way off base here?

 

I apologize if this topic is in the wrong place, please move it if I made a mistake.

 

Thanks.


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#2 coorsmikey

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 06:48 PM

Please provide more details? Sounds like a cool idea if it can be made for less than $50. Sign me up?

scalpelsterilizer.jpg


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#3 Jinroh

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 07:18 PM

Please provide more details? Sounds like a cool idea if it can be made for less than $50. Sign me up?

 scalpelsterilizer.jpg&&0){for(var>)throw>

I believe what you posted there is the infrared sterilizer. They cost between 200 and 300 bucks correct? Those use infrared quarts lamps and put out a ton of heat and use more power. My system puts off no heat and uses 20 watts which is the power of a small light bulb and to use it is instantaneous after it is turned on. Most infrared units require at least 50 watts, require ten-minute warmup and the element requires replacement over time. (According to my research).

 

As far as cost, I will have to look into it. I made this prototype out of loose parts I had knocking around my lab. I powered it with a lab power supply which is great for experiments but not practical for use and they are expensive. Just off the top of my head, I am guessing I could build one for 50 bucks in parts, but I am not taking into account the cooling requirements of the circuit board. The unit does not put off heat like a flame, but the board will get warm during use, so some experimenting of whether fan cooling would be required or merely heat sinking will be sufficient. Board cooling will drive the price up.

The only area the infrared sterilizer is better is that it can sterilize non-magnetic items like glass. My unit requires the object be metal and at the minimum slightly ferrous like stainless steel and other similar alloys. Aluminum needles would not work. I will post to this topic once I have some photos and more information on reliability and cost.


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#4 Furthur1

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 08:10 PM

it sounds like your going for perfection, never stop, just be careful           howyourolll 


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#5 Furthur1

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 08:11 PM

rip Ezzy



#6 TVCasualty

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 10:19 PM

 Considering that the mass of a needle is so slight, and that technology related to heating stuff up with precision with battery power has come a long way in recent years, this thread inspired an idea: A battery operated inoculator with integrated needle sterilization.

 

It will probably need to be designed from scratch rather than adapted to a syringe and could bring about a whole new paradigm in sterile transfer tools. Ideally the needle would be heated directly instead of by a separate resistance coil. Great, now I need a custom alloy for the suddenly not-cheap needle but I'd bet that some blend of high-resistance nichrome and stainless steel would play well together.

 

The heating tech would mostly come from the vape/e-cig industry, and I imagine they'd be real interested in alternative uses for their coils and batteries and control boards right about now. Put all that stuff and the rechargeable battery that connects to some kind of modified pipette assembly (might as well give ourselves precision metering while we're at it) in a single detachable housing and the rest would be autoclavable, though that would just be the needle and whatever contains the media being dispensed.

 

I'd been working on a way to fill 10 syringes with spore solution simultaneously (and equally) for someone who was getting into the spore business some years ago and some of the gear I found for that might be applicable to this (but I only found some expensive high-end research gear online and it never went any further than initial inquiries because I got a call one day that he'd suddenly and unexpectedly died from an undiagnosed and apparently-severe health issue).

 

 

Good god I need to get my shop back together soon or my head's going to explode. I love tinkering with stuff, it's addictive and thinking about it makes me want to go take something apart and use the parts for something else even as I'm typing this.


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#7 Jinroh

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Posted 04 October 2019 - 11:41 PM

 I'd been working on a way to fill 10 syringes with spore solution simultaneously (and equally) for someone who was getting into the spore business some years ago and some of the gear I found for that might be applicable to this (but I only found some expensive high-end research gear online and it never went any further than initial inquiries because I got a call one day that he'd suddenly and unexpectedly died from an undiagnosed and apparently-severe health issue).

 

 

Good god I need to get my shop back together soon or my head's going to explode. I love tinkering with stuff, it's addictive and thinking about it makes me want to go take something apart and use the parts for something else even as I'm typing this.

Your idea is very interesting. Keep me posted on your progress. This would be a great forum to bounce ideas off of each other. Your design will be more complex and will require much more R&D than my simple inductor. I should have a fully functional unit within a month. Technically I have a working model right now, I just need to come up with a housing and cooling for the PCB. I already came up with a ducted cooler for use for people who use flow hoods about an hour ago. Just set the unit in front of the hood with the duct facing the air flow and there is the cooling system. A unit for a SAB will most likely need heat sinks at the minimum.



#8 TVCasualty

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 12:51 AM

The progression of my solutions to design problems generally goes in predictable stages. They start out hideously complex but usually look pretty cool, then I pare them down to still-overthinking-it-a-bit-and-too-hard-to-clean-or-maintain, and finally I get to form-following-function maximum simplicity. I hope.

 

Sometimes that takes a while, and it'll probably be more than a month before I'll even have a place to live, much less a shop up and running, so I won't have any progress to report on anything for a while.

 

Incidentally, the last I'd messed with the syringe filler project was 2006. I've got projects on back-burners behind my projects on back-burners.

 

 

 

I'd sure like to see a picture of this needle sterilizer (whenever you're ready to post one).



#9 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 01:13 AM

Don't worry! I plan to post pictures as soon as I have the PCB permanently soldered. Right now the circuits are punched into a breadboard. I also need to decide what type of power supply I want to use for the finished product. (Most likely PWM MOSFET). Once I have it safely enclosed (the second stage can still shock the shit out of you even though it is low voltage) I will set up my camera and show it in use. I will also calculate parts costs and sources for the parts for anyone that is handy with electronics. Those that are not good with electronics, I could build one for them. Anyone with a flow hood will be in luck since I won't need to install a cooling system and the total cost would be less.

 

As for your multiple syringe idea, you might want to look into modifying a tabletop gantry type CNC milling machine. All you would need to do is mount actuators on the arm instead of a cutting head. You can pick up those units cheap on eBay and Amazon. You could even get fancy and automate the aiming with IR sensors. If you are familiar with or not afraid to learn G-code syntax you can use Windows notepad to run the mill. Or you could spend a little money on control software that requires less effort. Just an idea!

Picture something like this except with a row of linear actuators linked mechanically and controlled simultaneously while the containers to be inoculated are fixed to the deck in rows.

 

gantry cnc.JPG


Edited by Jinroh, 05 October 2019 - 01:28 AM.

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#10 TVCasualty

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 08:49 AM

I'm not sure how much revenue spore vendors are taking in so I was working on a manual system for filling them that would basically be a combination of this thing:

 

2012-11%2F14%2F135217081418.jpg

 

 

With this thing:

 

25029_1.jpg

 

Mounted in a frame that would support the barrels being filled and act as a limit stop, giving you something that looks a little like this:

 

Mibmix.png?itok=imPWn9xl

 

 


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#11 newmoon

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 08:59 AM

If you'd like another pair of eyes on it I'd be curious to see the schematic for your sterilizer - cool project!


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#12 Myc

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 10:38 AM

If you're willing to share the circuit diagram and a bill of materials I would really like to try bread-boarding one of these too.

I've got a monster heat-sink which should handle the wattage presented. It should work great in the blow-by from the laminar airstream - or I could trick rig it into the intake with a quick disconnect for cleaning. The wiring system could be totally concealed and the heat sink/circuit board located in a position which is remote (and permanently shielded) from the work area. One would have to remove an access panel to service the circuit boards. The output would be a cord-and plug quick connector rigged into the cabinet of the flowhood. The coil/sterilizer would be "portable" - capable of being un-plugged for disassembly and cleaning.

 

What about using an old computer power supply? I have one that the cooling fan was taking a dump so I just replaced it. Now I can replace the fan in the "dud" unit and it'll be a fine, regulated power supply with thermal protection - etc. You just have to know how to "trick" the wiring harness to get an output - lots of articles out there on how to do this - maybe even one around here too.

 

When you say "heavy-gauge wire" - what are we talking?  - -  The enameled winding from an industrial transformer might do a good job for this one since the conductors are usually flat-ish rather than circular.

 

This is actually a great idea and the timing is excellent. I've been doing a lot of sterile work in front of the flowhood and it's a pain in the ass to stop and fire up a pen torch for sterilization.


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#13 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 11:35 AM

I'm not sure how much revenue spore vendors are taking in so I was working on a manual system for filling them that would basically be a combination of this thing:


With this thing:

 

25029_1.jpg

 

Mounted in a frame that would support the barrels being filled and act as a limit stop, giving you something that looks a little like this:

 

Mibmix.png?itok=imPWn9xl

That manifold is basically what I was trying to describe, with a linear actuator rather than a rotary cutting head. You could have a tray mounted on the deck of the mill and use the Y-axis of the mill to progressively move along the tray on the deck and align itself with each row of vials, you could use the cutting head channel to operate the actuator. The possibilities are endless.


Edited by Jinroh, 05 October 2019 - 11:36 AM.

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#14 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 11:50 AM

If you're willing to share the circuit diagram and a bill of materials I would really like to try bread-boarding one of these too.

I've got a monster heat-sink which should handle the wattage presented. It should work great in the blow-by from the laminar airstream - or I could trick rig it into the intake with a quick disconnect for cleaning. The wiring system could be totally concealed and the heat sink/circuit board located in a position which is remote (and permanently shielded) from the work area. One would have to remove an access panel to service the circuit boards. The output would be a cord-and plug quick connector rigged into the cabinet of the flowhood. The coil/sterilizer would be "portable" - capable of being un-plugged for disassembly and cleaning.

 

What about using an old computer power supply? I have one that the cooling fan was taking a dump so I just replaced it. Now I can replace the fan in the "dud" unit and it'll be a fine, regulated power supply with thermal protection - etc. You just have to know how to "trick" the wiring harness to get an output - lots of articles out there on how to do this - maybe even one around here too.

 

When you say "heavy-gauge wire" - what are we talking?  - -  The enameled winding from an industrial transformer might do a good job for this one since the conductors are usually flat-ish rather than circular.

 

This is actually a great idea and the timing is excellent. I've been doing a lot of sterile work in front of the flowhood and it's a pain in the ass to stop and fire up a pen torch for sterilization.

So far I built this circuit in my head with no schematic, but I plan to draw one once my design is finalized. My handwriting is horrid so I will use Adobe Creator for the schematic. The PC power supply is a good idea, and I was thinking along those lines at first. The older generation supplies that output +/-12V and +/-5v would work but the newer "smart" power supplies output +/-3v and +/-12v since the newer systems are more efficient and the circuit voltages are lower (3.5v) and will shut down if they sense any fluctuations. I am interested in the 5v range since that area produces the correct magnetic field for small metal objects while 12v is way too hot. Fine voltage adjustment is necessary since needle/tool thickness varies so a rather accurate user adjustable power supply is necessary. I will share all my information once I get a reliable design. I want to do a few hours of duty cycle testing before I share a schematic. I do not want to hand out a buggy system that will burn out quickly (which is very possible if not handled correctly).

 

As far as what gauge coil I am using, the photo below is what I am using. Solid copper with enamel insulation. This will eventually be wrapped around a glass tube. The glass plays two roles. The least important is that it can be easily cleaned, but the major reason is the glass will insulate the induction coil from the heat the metal object that is placed into the coil emits. Without an insulator, it would only be a matter of time before the heat of the objects is conducted through the coil back to the PCB which would burn out rather quickly.

 

 

 

 


Edited by Jinroh, 05 October 2019 - 12:58 PM.

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#15 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 12:07 PM

If you'd like another pair of eyes on it I'd be curious to see the schematic for your sterilizer - cool project!

Sure thing. I will post everything under this topic when I am finished.



#16 Myc

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 12:08 PM

I get you on the safety aspects and final design.

 

You could use the 12v section of the power supply and use a potentiometer to sink the un-used voltage (why I would use a MONSTER heat sink with a matching monster mosfet bolted to it - heat sink silicone, threaded screws, etc. I'm sure a bunch of this stuff could be scrapped from a junk audio amplifier - heat sinks, fans, mosfets, pots, etc..... Heck, if you're good enough, you could also re-purpose the shielded transformer for the power supply and by hacking the regulator section - would likely have the whole kit in one junk unit - (case, fans, jacks and more)

 

So are you using twin mosfets ocsillated by an ic chip? - If so, you can change the duty cycle by using a potentiometer instead of a dedicated resistor for changes in the timing on the oscillation.


Edited by Myc, 05 October 2019 - 12:10 PM.

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#17 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 12:14 PM

I get you on the safety aspects and final design.

 

You could use the 12v section of the power supply and use a potentiometer to sink the un-used voltage (why I would use a MONSTER heat sink with a matching monster mosfet bolted to it - heat sink silicone, threaded screws, etc. I'm sure a bunch of this stuff could be scrapped from a junk audio amplifier - heat sinks, fans, mosfets, pots, etc..... Heck, if you're good enough, you could also re-purpose the shielded transformer for the power supply and by hacking the regulator section - would likely have the whole kit in one junk unit - (case, fans, jacks and more)

 

So are you using twin mosfets ocsillated by an ic chip? - If so, you can change the duty cycle by using a potentiometer instead of a dedicated resistor for changes in the timing on the oscillation.

Yes, I am using MOSFETs with an IC, I will most likely use Pulse Width Modulation MOSFET power supply controlled by a POT. I am trying to keep this small and efficient.


Edited by Jinroh, 05 October 2019 - 02:18 PM.


#18 TVCasualty

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 12:18 PM

Careful with those photos that show unique anatomical features, like finger/palm prints... :tinfoil:

 

But I'm a bit over-the-top 'noid about some stuff. I'll even obscure the uniquely-identifiable grain pattern of the plywood it's made out of if I post a photo of my flow hood. :rolleyes:


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#19 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 12:23 PM

Careful with those photos that show unique anatomical features, like finger/palm prints... :tinfoil:

 

But I'm a bit over-the-top 'noid about some stuff. I'll even obscure the uniquely-identifiable grain pattern of the plywood it's made out of if I post a photo of my flow hood. :rolleyes:

Thank you for the heads up. The thought never occurred to me. I will change that image.


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#20 Jinroh

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Posted 05 October 2019 - 01:05 PM

LOL! Never mind! While searching for parts I discovered we can buy a premade unit using the same identical coil online! You can get it on Amazon for 15 bucks! Duhhhhh. Me stupid. LOL

All that is required is an adjustable 5v to 12v DC power supply which I am sure could be purchased already assembled. Sometimes I overthink things. LOL


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