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PC spoiled because of oily environment..

Posted on 2005-05-08
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Hi,

We are in a manufacturing environment. The production factory is full with machines and the environment here is oily+cool air condition, there are pleny of PCs within this area and the major problem we face here is time to time the PC spoiled because of the environment - where the PC (internally such as the Power supply, fan, processor, or even the mother board) will be cover of oily dust.

Therefore, just getting u experts and wonder if anyone has come across to these environment and any suggestion on how to get through of it.

regards,
Zent
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Question by:xavierise
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by:concretesailors
ID: 13956432
Are you wanting to stop this, or wondering how to clean the parts?

To clean the parts I would use Electronic Contact Cleaner

To stop it from happening, I just don't see any way for this to happen. You might try installing filters over the intake vents of the computer. I would place them on the outside so that you will be able to easy see when it's time to replace them. This won't stop it from happening, but will slow it down.
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by:wordartist
ID: 13956857
Concretesailors in right.  The filters on the intake fans will slow it down.  You could also encase the computer in acrylic.  Give it enough room to breathe.  I have a computer in a waterproof acrylic case works well.  You could of course, cut a hole for the cables and seal it so you would only have to encase the tower.
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by:nobus
nobus earned 150 total points
ID: 13957857
there is only one solution from getting it to happen, as said above : put the case in a closed box with an  air intake from a clean room, and the output in the same clean environment. THis will inhibit it from getting oily fast.
as for the cleaning; i suppose that everything is covered, so i would recommend  a dissassembly of the pc, soaking all the parts in a mild solvent, like isopropyl alcohol, then letting it dry for some time, and reassemble it. Since this is a time consuming task, you may want to have somebody do it for you, or purchase new PC's instead.
BTW How quick is it happening that the PC is covered?
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by:fixnix
ID: 13958451
How about fanless cases?

http://www.directron.com/fanless.html
http://www.excaliberpc.com/Zalman_TNN500AF_Fanless_Case_400W/TNN500AF/partinfo-id-548154.html

They're very expensive, but so is replacing or cleaning the copmuters often.

Calculate the break even point of dropping a grand on a case like that versus your current time and labor cost in replacing the current systems.  Then try one of those units and see if it looks like it'll outlast the break even date.  If so, replace the rest.  You could also try other cases with external filters and throw those in to the cost analysis.  
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by:kneH
kneH earned 75 total points
ID: 13958531
How about going for TS or Citrix.

You can get terminals at the workfloor.
They have no moving parts n stuff hence you will not get stuff in there.
Plus if crap does get in.... they are waaay less expensive.
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by:nobus
ID: 13958532
A fanless case...good point.
But ithink the PC's would still get dirty, but not so fast.
Maybe a combination of both is the best answer
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by:JasonMcBee
ID: 13959843
I had the same problem.  Worked in a Machine shop.  When i would pull a PC from the floor, oil would be dripping from the power supply.  The best bet is what kneH suggested, go for dumb terminals.  You can get them cheap enough, and they have no moving parts (fans).  I was working on implementing this solution when i left, but our sister company did this and got rid of the oil problem.

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Accepted Solution

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concretesailors earned 150 total points
ID: 13960598
Using dumb terminals would be a good long term goal, but for the moment I would still use filters on the intake vents, as you migrate. The problem with encasing them in acrylic and pumping clean air in is that if you have several computers in several locations throughout the building, setting up vents to all these machines could prove to be rather extensive and costly.

I use filters bought at Walmart, cut them to fit, and either plastic tie them to the machine or duct tape them to the machine. In some situation I was able to build wooden frames that are attached to the case with screws, and hold the filters in place. These seems to work for me, the user's can keep an eye on the filters and notify me when they appear to get unusually dirty. The cost is minimal, and the time to implement is also minimal, compared to a entire migration.
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by:concretesailors
ID: 13960682
I might also mention that I don't have these machines in an oily environment. It's a severely dusty environment. Mostly wood dust, paper dust, rubber dust from fork lift tires, outside dirt and dust, and cement dust. But I would think that by using filters in your oily environment would actually benefit the use of your filters, as the dust would stick to the oily filters before it ever reaches the interior of the case.

Trucks that are run in dusty conditions actually use an oil bath filtration system. The air breather for the carburator sits in oil and paper filter sits above the oil. The oil bath helps the dirt to stick to the paper filter before it's ever inducted into the air intake of the carburators. So I think by using outside filters, on the intake vents, the oil in the air, in your situation, would assist your filtration system.

Let me know how it works out.
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by:maharlika
ID: 13962371
Had the same problem when I worked in a transmission manufacturing plant--when I tipped the keyboards up, oil poured out.  We put them in a vented kiosk, which kept the bulk of the problem out, but eventually it took its toll and PCs had to be replaced, just not as quickly as they otherwise would have.
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by:chiingliang
ID: 13984471
my suggestion is to use a fanless machine like VIA's eden industrial pcs, then with a membrane keyboard.  use industrial pcs means low power requirement, no fan required.

they membrane keyboards are essentially water/oil proof :-)
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Author Comment

by:xavierise
ID: 14106676
Thanks all, sorry for the late reply, I will gather all ur kind advise to build up the suitable solution in our environment.. Thanks!

xavierise
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