Clean Source Newsletter Archive

February 2019

New Substrate, New Cleaning Part 2 – Polymers, Glass, and More

Back in the mid-1960s, an iconic movie featured a recent graduate, played by Dustin Hoffman, who was attempting to find himself. One of the “old boys” came up to him and, in a solicitous voice, whispered a single word: PLASTICS. If you manufacture product, I am here to whisper: “plastics,” […]
January 2019

Rosie, Robots, and Critical Product Cleaning

Everyone in manufacturing – men and women – can benefit from the experiences of “Rosie the Riveter,” an icon of the World War II era.  I was reminded of Rosie while reading a thought-provoking article on LinkedIn that reviews fifty ideas to watch this year. Some trends are disturbing in terms […]
November 2018

Dust Storms, Detecting Contaminants, and Critical Cleaning

How clean is clean enough? You test for a contaminant. The results indicate contamination level is zero, but the product still fails – it’s as if the contaminant is still there. What happened? Even with a clean manufacturing facility, you can be caught in a detection dust storm, one that […]
October 2018

New Substrate, New Cleaning Part 1 – Metals

Let’s change just one thing: the substrate. The product line remains the same – same size, same shape, same end-use requirements. Do you have to re-evaluate the cleaning process? Absolutely! To head off production shut downs and to avoid losing business, test the new substrate with the current cleaning process […]
August 2018

Critical Cleaning, Trade Shows and The Mall

You are off to a trade show to find a great critical cleaning process. I’ve run across a few articles about what to do to make the most of a particular show. Planning and conference apps and checklists are a start; but they won’t give you the full benefits. Effective […]
July 2018

What’s in your cleaning bath?

It’s a continual source of amazement, or at least amusement. A manufacturer expends considerable time, engineering effort, and expense in designing a product. The marketing folks tout the product’s advanced superiority in trade publications, conferences, and web sites. Then, the assemblers have to actually build the product. Yield problems arise. […]
June 2018

EPA Lautenberg Update – A Window of Opportunity

The EPA is further scrutinizing cleaning solvents trichloroethylene (TCE), perchloroethylene (PCE, tetrachloroethylene), methylene chloride (MC), n-methyl-pyrrolidone (NMP), and n-propyl bromide (nPB, 1-bromopropane). We discussed EPA actions in the February issue of Clean Source.  Now, the EPA has published new documents relating to these solvents and five other chemicals and has […]
May 2018

It Happened! A Revolutionary Cleaning Workshop

The first Product Quality Cleaning Workshops (PQCW) was at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville Texas, May 16-17. Participants included manufacturers in the areas of automotive, optics, medical, and metal finishing as well as developers of cleaning chemistries, cleaning equipment, and techniques for surface analysis. The workshop confirmed our expectation […]
April 2018

Can you follow your own cleaning specifications?

Specific written instructions about the cleaning process don’t necessarily translate into profitable manufacturing. Consider the wisdom imparted by the classic, mid-century T.V. commercial featuring tuna with good taste (a fish exhibiting faux upper-class behavior) and then touting the superiority of tuna that tastes good.  Successful, profitable manufacturing requires both the […]
March 2018

Cleanrooms, Clean Product

Picture a cleanroom. What comes to mind is perhaps a sanctuary, a safe haven, a place of refuge from the rough and tumble world of manufacturing.  The space is carefully designed, certified, and monitored.  The furnishings, the consumables are controlled and have specified attributes.  The room is inhabited by white-garbed […]
February 2018

EPA Happenings – What’s the Impact on Critical Cleaning

Be brave! Read about developments at the EPA. It will be fun – sort of.  Welcome to the giant multi-dimensional Sudoku puzzle in the sky. Regulations, both safety and environmental, are so complex and fluid that they result in a monumental headache for manufacturers.  Two EPA developments may result in […]
January 2018

Residue – The Product

Residue is a major concern for manufacturers. Consequences of inadequate residue removal include undesirable appearance (spotting, staining), poor coating adhesion, low yield, and catastrophic product failure.  To successfully remove residue it is useful to understand what that residue is and where it came from.  Also consider: what is it you […]
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