So would one recommend doing this on a carbon wheelset? (I'm guessing NO)http://velonews.competitor.com/2009/02/ ... tone_87519
Lennard Zinn wrote:
Tobias (Velonews reader) wrote:
Carbon and acetone
Regarding acetone use for cleaning glue off of carbon rims,acetone should be used with great caution on carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) components, since it can dissolve the epoxy matrix.
While cursory contact will normally be fine, soaking CFRP in acetone will damage the epoxy and possible lead to failure. Any damaged components should not be cleaned with acetone, since the liquid solvent could enter cracks or scratches in the clear coat (or holes leading to the inside of components!) and slowly plasticize the epoxy from within. Acetone should always be washed off with plenty of clean water.
Although less effective than some other methods, acetone digestion of epoxy matrix is a fairly common method of determining the volume fraction of CFRP laminates. Methanol is a much more appropriate solvent for cleaning reinforced epoxies.
Actually, I have looked into this a lot in the past and would not have recommended it without having done so. Here are some responses to your assertion from three people who know more about carbon composites than I could ever hope to.
Craig Calfee, Calfee Design wrote:
An answer from Calfee
That’s utter nonsense. Epoxies are rated in two standard tests: boiling in water and boiling in acetone. The rating calls out the amount of water or acetone absorbed. Epoxy does not dissolve in acetone. Acetone is a great solvent for uncured epoxy. But once it’s cured, acetone doesn’t hurt it.
The only problem with acetone as it relates to bikes is that it will dull paint and clear coats. Most bicycle parts are coated, sometimes with a satin or flat finish that looks like nude carbon. Acetone will change the glossiness (or lack thereof) and make you think it’s doing something to the epoxy. Alcohol is the strongest solvent you can use that will not affect paint.
We offer frames in a nude finish and offer to strip all coatings off other carbon frames. Then we treat it with a UV filtering protectant (303 Protectant). Acetone cleans off this Scotch-guard-like treatment and it would need to be re-done.
That’s more than you need to know about acetone!
Cees Beers, Founder and president, ADA Wheel wrote:
An answer from ADA
We’ve never had any problem with acetone, and it can only hurt the foam inside. No it does not dissolve our carbon matrix.
Founder and president, ADA Wheels
Andy Tetmeyer, Hed Design wrote:
An answer from Hed
I’m more of a wheel expert than a resin expert, but here is our experience: We have never soaked wheels in acetone but we have used it as a cleaner for 20 years and have never had a problem with resin degrading. I’m not worried about our use for two reasons: cleaning is a “cursory contact” and acetone is pretty volatile. A rag soaked in acetone only stays wet for about 30 seconds before the acetone completely evaporates. Second, acetone is fairly harmless. You can get it on your skin and not worry (though it does dry your hands out very quickly and very effectively), and vapors are not a problem in a decently ventilated area.
Methanol can cause blindness and death in relatively low doses and can be absorbed through the skin. I don’t dispute that soaking a carbon wheel in acetone might degrade the resin, but since we don’t soak the wheels, we’ll continue to use it.