Carbide Impregnator Questions

I just acquired an Electro Arc Carbide Impregnator. It is used for
depositing a very thin layer of tungsten carbide on edges and wear surfaces.
Electro Arc has the consumables, but they get $8 for a 3/16 by 1-1/2 inch
rod. Does anybody know if you can use carbide from an alternate, cheaper
supplier?
Reply to
ATP
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I've no direct experience of this but an ancient reference that I have show that this originated in Russia during the second world war when they were experimenting with spark erosion. They called it electrospark toughening and used a low voltage capacitor discharge system with a vibrating electrode.
They tried both normal tooling grades of tungsten and titanium carbide and also pure graphite. The carbides gave the best wear resistance but graphite came close and gave a better surface finish.
From this I would expect that carbide tooltips would work fine. Another possibility is the tungsten carbide cored arc welding rods normally used used for carbide hard facing.
jim
Reply to
pentagrid
I'd be curious about that source, Jim, because the Rocklinizer company, who first commercialized the process in the US, has been around since 1934.
Ed Huntress
Reply to
Ed Huntress
Rocklinizer could well be first - my reference is a 1955 translation of a russian document - source date unknown. Most of the text deals with direct solenoid controlled spark erosion.
jim
Reply to
pentagrid
Thanks for the info, the unit does indeed use a vibrating electrode and a capacitive discharge system. The few sticks I got with it look like some kind of graphite. Electro Arc is still manufacturing the unit and selling it for $3,750. I didn't pay quite that much.
Reply to
ATP

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