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Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/16/2009 10:07 AM

Hello

Is there any effective way to hone/polish hydraulic cylinder rods with materials and tools found in the home shop? The rods in question are on a power angle snow plow and are showing moderate signs of rust - scattered brown pits.

Thanks

firhead

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#1

Re: Honing pitted hydraulic cylinder rods

12/16/2009 10:12 AM

If pited it would take more than jut honing and polishing. You would have to build it up. And if in a home shop, consider alternatives.

Do you have leaks in the seals, and where are the spots. Near the farthest end I assume.

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#2

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/16/2009 7:21 PM

Remove the rust with scotchbrite pads or 400+ grit carborundum and oil, polish with scotchbrite and apply silicone grease to the rod; the rod end may not be doing the work. Keep an eye to the seals and when cost effectiveness prevails replace the rods, new rods aren't expensive or you can buy 0.050" hard chrome rod and have local machine shop R&R; these will not pit—ever.

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#6
In reply to #2

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/17/2009 5:50 PM

That should read 0.0005" (1/2 of a thousands of hard chrome). (0.001" also some times available)

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#7
In reply to #6

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/17/2009 6:04 PM

No I use 0.050" fifty thousandths chrome harder than woodpecker lips

though for the subject 0.020" is adequate I suppose.

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#10
In reply to #7

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/18/2009 9:01 PM

Just wondering who supplies you with 0.050" chrome rod? Bin in business for 20 + years, and unless I have it done custom I can't get it off the shelf.

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#17
In reply to #10

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/21/2009 2:42 PM

Many are those whom require such, ask the vendor to add enough for you to that order

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#3

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/17/2009 2:41 AM

The previous comments are correct in that you may be able to clean them up ( I would guess a powered wire wheel will be necessary ) and that the rod end may not be doing the work. If they are single acting rams you may be able to polish them up, replace the seals and get by for a while. Remember that the pitting usually comes from off-season storage. If possible disconnect the rod ends and collapse the rams for summer storage. At a minimum coat them with grease for the summer. An ounce of prevention you know. When you so desire, there are several websites that sell replacement rams for much less than factory ones and seem to be of just as high or better quality. Good luck.

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#4

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/17/2009 3:57 AM

It maybe cheaper for you to get the rods repaired, if, as you say, the wear is moderate. Don't tempt fate by hoping that polishing may do the trick..........polishing only removes more material...........even though it may be a small amount.

Several methods of repair are available, e.g. welding and regrinding, hardchrome facing, metal (chrome, titanium, etc.) spraying, etc.

Always better to know the repair is going to leave you with no doubts...........or as suggested by a previous member, buy new ones.

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#5

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/17/2009 7:22 AM

If the rust and pitting is lite it can be removed with crocus cloth. If after cleaning you still have pits and the seals are leaking then the rods need to be replaced. The process of repairing the rods can be costly it is usually only done on rods where its cost effective. On most small cylinders its not. I would even shop around for new cylinders. Some times the cost of parts can be more that a new cylinder. As if I was going to do it. It would be a complete rebuild with seals and packing.

If after cleaning the rods up and the cylinders are not leaking I wouldn't worry about it until they do. Also for storage I would wipe the exposed rods down to get all the road salts off and cover them with some type of protectant.

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#8

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/17/2009 10:26 PM

We use Emory cloth on corrosion on aircraft actuators very effectively. After cleaning, as stated above, if it leaks from pitting just replace it. If there are no leaks lube them with CPC, PD680 or something similar.

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#9
In reply to #8

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/18/2009 8:12 AM

I hope that is only on small private aircraft...........only a bush mechanic would carry out that butchery.........using emery cloth.

Another question I may ask, is.............. Why don't you identify yourself and let us all know where you are from?

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/19/2009 12:47 AM

Just as a matter of interest............if you have anything at all to do hydraulics, the standard and recognised procedure if you have any damage to hydraulic pistons is, to get them repaired in an approved manner e.g. hard chromed..............or...............replace them with new pistons.

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#12

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/19/2009 2:48 PM

Greetings and happy holidays to all.

I would just like to remind everybody that the gentleman with this problem is asking for advice on how to get by with limited resources for an item that is used occasionally and has no ones life depending on it. We all know how to grind, hone and rechrome something, but that is not the situation here. If the ram is not leaking oil everywhere and creating an environmental issue, then a bandage type fix is probably appropriate. Let's face it, we've probably all done something like this.

Heck, we probably even bragged about it.

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#13
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Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/20/2009 5:30 AM

This is why we can have a lot of problems in industry because of this attitude.......let's just use a bandage type repair philosophy.

"If a job is worth doing, it's worth doing properly properly."

This is what I was always taught..........yes, you can carry out bandage repairs in an emergency......but.......only in an emergency.......not as a permanent fix.

I have done this many times at sea, when one is hundreds, maybe thousands, of miles from the nearest port. But, when in port, things are done correctly because spares and/or materials/machinery are available to carry out repairs correctly.

Do not take FOC vessels as an example of correct marine procedures.

My marine engineering students are always taught correct methods of repair, because their lives and the safety of the vessel is in their hands as engineers of their vessels. This even includes using correct size spanners and not shifters (adjustable wrenches).

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#14
In reply to #13

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/21/2009 6:31 AM

Being a little rough on us we are not talking about a ship in which may lives are depended upon at sea. We are talking about a snow plow and whether we get the drive way cleared of snow. Expending funds to run a ship for commerce is a little different then a personal plow.

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#15
In reply to #14

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/21/2009 6:55 AM

Whilst I get your point.........many others could read what has been said........not good.

It's the principle behind the work ethic...........not the size of the job.

If one gets used to carrying out band aid repairs.......it becomes a habit...........a very bad habit, that could result in dire consequences.

e.g. "Thinks?????"............I carried out a repair on a piston for a small snow plough..........no reason why I can't carry out a similar repair on a piston for this hoist...........News next day........."Man crushed as car hoist fails."

This then becomes a problem.

This is my concern.......and I feel a fairly logical approach.

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#18
In reply to #15

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/22/2009 7:14 AM

I understand your point never have been happy with a band aid approach myself. As you can see in my post #5. But any repair good or bad can have its consequences if it fails. Those doing the repair should take that into consideration.

He did seek out advice on how to address the problem. Most that are into band aid repairs wouldn't have asked.

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#19
In reply to #18

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/22/2009 9:22 AM

I think that this has been an interesting discussion...........to say the least.

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#20
In reply to #19

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/22/2009 3:07 PM

Agreed...and band-aides do have their place too, for me their place is as an aid not a healing.

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#16

Re: Honing Pitted Hydraulic Cylinder Rods

12/21/2009 8:52 AM

Hello,

Thank you folks for the informative input; as mentioned, this snowplow project is a low-risk app. and I will give it the measure of attention it requires. I also appreciate the risk involved in institutionalizing a "bandaid" approach to repair and maintenance when the consequence of failure are material.

This has been a good forum for solid, usable advice. Thanks again.

firhead

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