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Old 05-27-2011, 10:22 AM   #1
RedRaider
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Exclamation EK - Nickel Plating Problems/Failure/Corrosion - READ BEFORE BUYING

This thread is to address the current problems that EK is having with their plating.

AT THIS TIME UNFORTUNATELY RRTECH CAN NO LONGER RECOMMEND ANYONE PURCHASE EK NICKEL PLATED PRODUCTS, OR ANY EK PRODUCTS, DUE TO THE NUMEROUS COMPLAINTS BEING POSTED ON FORUMS ALL OVER THE WORLD, BY VERY DISSATISFIED OWNERS !

EK, SINCE APPARENTLY APRIL 2010, HAS DONE NOTHING TO ADDRESS THIS RAPIDLY GROWING ISSUE !



-------------------------------------------------------------------------

I believe I have a good idea about what is happening with EK, whether EK will admit it or not.

EDDY THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH YOU AS A PERSON, I LIKE YOU, RATHER THIS IS ABOUT DISCOVERING THE TRUTH. I ALSO TELL THE TRUTH, GOOD BAD OR OTHERWISE. SO IF YOU GET YOUR FEELINGS HURT, THEN THAT'S ON YOU. I HAVE MET AND SPENT TIME WITH YOU IN TAIWAN EDDY, YOU KNOW EXACTLY HOW I AM IN THE REAL WORLD.

First, nickel plating is not all the same. I read a quote on OCAU by Eddy saying 'nickel is nickel', sorry Eddy, but you are wrong. There are varying degrees of nickel tabs that are used in plating. Outside the US, mainly in Asia, they are using manganese to plate with. That product has been outlawed in the US, due to it's health concerns. I know of one manufacturer who I am convinced used manganese in it's early plated products. But going back to nickel, you can buy tabs that are more pure and less pure. So don't go around saying that 'nickel is nickel', because that is a load of horseshit.

As far as Eddy mentioning the thickness of his nickel plating and others saying it needs a thicker plating, I'm unable to confirm Eddy's claim of 4 microns, due to the fact I only buy copper EK products and have them plated myself. I do know that my plater and I went through a lengthy trial and error on our first batches, to determine the proper time needed in the nickel bath to achieve the results we desired.

During this trial and error process, which was done using Heatkiller 3.0 CPU blocks, we also tried plating the blocks with and without removing the lacquer coating that Heatkiller and EK apply to their copper. We found that if the lacquer was not properly removed with acids/thinners, then the flaking I am seeing all over the web regarding EK nickel plated products, was occurring. When EK released their copper top for the Supreme HF, this trial and error process was repeated on it. Notice I said FLAKING, because THAT IS WHAT IS HAPPENING. There IS NO CORROSION, period!

I have a feeling that whatever shop EK has chosen to use for their plating, or if they switched to a new shop, they lazy ass bastards are not properly removing the lacquer from the copper, prior to plating them. Now why any company would apply lacquer to a copper part that is going to be plated is beyond me, but I'm now thinking that there is a demand for nickel plated blocks, so they pulled from their 'copper only' finished stock to meet the nickel plated demand? Only Eddy know the truth.

Again I HAVE SEEN THIS BEFORE WITH MY OWN EYES ON BLOCKS I HAVE HAD PLATED! I have seen this with Heatkiller and EK CPU blocks, because I DID IT ON PURPOSE! None of those blocks went out to customers, rather they were for our personal learning experience only. We didn't hook them up to a waterloop to see if it would flake, rather we used a much more abusive method that involved mechanical intervention.

As far as nickel plating goes, to me it looks very ghetto. Nickel has a 'yellowy' tinge to it, since nickel is closely related to silver. Me, I prefer chrome!

Here is a photo collection of just a sample of the various copper blocks that I have had plated. If you want to see what QUALITY looks like, then you will enjoy the fruits of my labor. Again these are custom plated blocks, not OEM:

RedRaider Technology Plating Gallery


================================================== =================================


IT APPEARS THIS PROBLEM STARTED BACK IN JANUARY AND IS NOT AN ISOLATED INCIDENT!!

Below are links to some of the various threads around the net:

Please Read Before Purchasing EK Nickel Plated Blocks

Alert on EK Nickel Waterblocks

EK nickel plate fail, rust\corrosion or? *PICS*

EK water blocks flaking

Exposed Copper/Corrosion on EK 6970 Block

SEEMS THIS WAS OCCURRING BACK IN APRIL / AUGUST 2010 AS WELL

EK 5870 block, corrosion? 2010

GTX 470 EK Nickel Full Cover Block Rust 2010
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:40 AM   #2
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POSTED ON OCAU THIS MORNING:


EK Nickel Flaking


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
Joel, it is true that there are more ways to nickel plate the metal, and I can assure we haven't checked that in the first place.
But when something is eating nickel off the copper then it's not the nickel, it's something in the coolant. And we intend to prove that sooner or later.

We have microscopic pictures, pictures taken from a SEM microscope and as soon as we are ready with the release you'll see the corrosion and much more...

Sorry Eddy, not buying it.

We have another thread regarding what happens to COPPER ONLY BLOCKS (EK Supreme to be exact) in a loop running plain distilled water and silver coils. This test/research was done by our own resident expert, Rubidium, who holds a B.S. in Chemistry / Physics / Electrical Engineering / Applied Mathematics and who also holds a PhD in Nuclear Physics.

See this post ... http://www.realredraider.com/vbullet...&postcount=106

Here is the entire thread, kindly begin at page 1 and read through till the end ... Holly Shit....My beloved **HK3** WTF is this Gunk

The conclusion was cupric oxide, period. Again, you have a PLATING PROBLEM. All this other mubo-jumbo is you just trying to skate the real issue, your plater cut corners either by your direction or he did it on his own, period, end of story.
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Old 05-27-2011, 11:18 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
Joel, it is true that there are more ways to nickel plate the metal, and I can assure we haven't checked that in the first place.
But when something is eating nickel off the copper then it's not the nickel, it's something in the coolant. And we intend to prove that sooner or later.

We have microscopic pictures, pictures taken from a SEM microscope and as soon as we are ready with the release you'll see the corrosion and much more...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
Hey guys.
We are not leaving you alone here.
We have already started testings with many fluids to see what is hurting nickel.

But I would like to ask you to think outside the box. If the nickel plating is flaking, where are the flaks?
What I can already tell you is that the nickel contact with copper is perfect and if you check closely you will see that something is eating nickel off the copper.

We are checking for the cause with our national chemical institute and will some answers and some pages to read for you hopefully till end of this week.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
At EK, we definitely recommend you use anti corrosion additive or premixed coolants with anti corrosion additive until further notice.

The distilled water may be perfectly good, but it eventually gets polluted by the time with the ions from the blocks, radiator (brass which is made of copper and zinc, tin and other stuff that is in the loop), but there are more factors how quickly it gets polluted.
Sorry, kindly allow me to break it down out for everyone, real plain and simple...

'Mixing Metals' (see.. Galvanic corrosion) refers to rolling metals together that aren't noble. It's an very easy concept to grasp.

ALUMINUM + COPPER or BRASS or NICKEL or SILVER = EPICFAIL

COPPER + BRASS = WIN

COPPER + BRASS + SILVER = WIN

COPPER + NICKEL = WIN

COPPER + NICKEL + SILVER = WIN

BRASS + NICKEL = WIN

BRASS + NICKEL + SILVER = WIN

COPPER + BRASS + NICKEL = WIN

COPPER + BRASS + NICKEL + SILVER = WIN


You can also throw some quality STAINLESS STEEL in with COPPER / BRASS / NICKEL / SILVER and not have any problems, rolling straight distilled H2O.

STAY AWAY FROM ALUMINUM IN YOUR LIQUID COOLING LOOP !!!

COPPER / BRASS / NICKEL / SILVER are NOBLE METALS. NO ANTI-CORROSION ADDITIVE IS NEEDED.

I don't care who you get to 'test' you're corrosion theory, they aren't going to change the fact that COPPER / BRASS / NICKEL / SILVER are NOBLE METALS. But you might find that if corrosion is occurring, then it is due to your plater not using nickel in his plating process. I hope he isn't using manganese....

There you go, hope this helps. IMHO, We ARE NOT seeing corrosion with EK blocks, rather the plating is flaking off due to improper preparation of the copper. IMHO, the lacquer is not being removed prior to plating, either at the direction of EK or by the plater.


ACCORDING TO EDDY, THIS IS OUR CULPRIT...

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Old 05-27-2011, 12:30 PM   #4
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Here are most of the pics of the EK nickel plated blocks that are reporting problems around the web. Liquid used ranges from straight distilled H2O, to adding silver, to adding PTNuke, to adding Feser or similar dye or rolling Feser One Pre-Mix (with four anti-corrosion additives), or rolling anti-freeze as coolant.

Looks like EK is having some major issues with their nickel plating process...

Here is a comment Eddy made regarding the nickel plating process...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy
Dont jump to conclusion too quickly.
And dont you think we haven't already checked the nickel plating process.
We'll be having some pages for you to read very soon.
Here are some PRIME examples of what some reported EK nickel plating jobs look like, once exposed to watercooling loops, that have been posted by various affected users across the WWW:

























































































































































EUROPEANS:



















Apparently EK just takes whatever shape the blocks are in and has them 'mass plated'. I can almost guarantee that they are not given the proper acid bathes, nor given the proper nickel bath. Plating is just as much an art, as it is a science.
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Old 05-27-2011, 12:35 PM   #5
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Here are all the posts, made by Eddy_EK on the various forums since 5 may 2011, regarding ek's utter shit plating jobs. Notice the propaganda theme of eddy passing the blame onto the end-user. The same end-user that keeps food on eddy's table.

Eddy will never mention/acknowledge that ek's nickel plated blocks are the only one's experiencing problems with distilled h2o. No one is having problems with aquacomputer or the korean company.

Go ahead and keep spinning yourself, tell you get dizzy eddy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK - 5 May 2011 View Post
Well, sending me such picture it does look like a dirt to me...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK - 6 May 2011 View Post
hey, ek is currently investigating these cases and trying to find logical explanation.
Once we find the answer we will present it to you immediately.

But i have to say that nickel is nickel. We have tested the thickness of nickel layer with the blocks that were shipped back to us and everything looks fine ~4micron layer.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 15 May 2011 View Post
dont jump to conclusion too quickly.
And dont you think we haven't already checked the nickel plating process.
We'll be having some pages for you to read very soon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 16 May 2011 View Post
not everything is black and white aj@x, consider that. We will let you all know our findings as soon as we will have it ready. And we want to have it asap.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 17 May 2011 View Post
hey guys.
We are not leaving you alone here.
We have already started testings with many fluids to see what is hurting nickel.

But i would like to ask you to think outside the box. If the nickel plating is flaking, where are the flaks?
What i can already tell you is that the nickel contact with copper is perfect and if you check closely you will see that something is eating nickel off the copper.

We are checking for the cause with our national chemical institute and will some answers and some pages to read for you hopefully till end of this week.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 17 May 2011 View Post
thanks for your help but we are handling so far.

At ek, we definitely recommend you use anti corrosion additive or premixed coolants with anti corrosion additive until further notice.

The distilled water may be perfectly good, but it eventually gets polluted by the time with the ions from the blocks, radiator (brass which is made of copper and zinc, tin and other stuff that is in the loop), but there are more factors how quickly it gets polluted.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 17 May 2011 View Post
hi!

The screw could not be like that from the beginning.
All our screws are black zinc-plated but that does not prevent corrosion if exposed to high humidity and direct contact of water.

And may i again express that the nickel plating is not flaking, it is being eroded.

You will be able to get replacement top in our webshop. If you'll be buying it we can add the screws for supreme hf block.

We are considering plexi bridges, but havent decided yet as the casted plexi is supplied none equal thickness and this makes us the problem as we cant mill the surface without making the surface shady apart from the acetal that can aid is milled over the surface.

I really doubt that plating the blocks by yourself or/and adding thicker layer will prevent nickel erosion if exposed to the conditions other had problems. It will just add more time until it gets to the copper.

If you have any questions, please send to our support e-mail as i may not be here all the time

thanks!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK - 19 May 2011 View Post
Your comment on nickel has no grounds as I havent seen a single flake of nickel and you can keep aesthetic problem with the block for yourself... Not forcing anyone to buy it...


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 26 May 2011 View Post
guys, we want to have a full report for you but this takes more time then expected, i was not able to be here meanwhile. We are thinking of you, don't worry.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 27 May 2011 View Post
hi,

this is very unfair to the people who just want to earn its % for living.
And i guess you can use different words to express your extreme feelings?

About the info you are expecting from us... We are still working on that as we want to make it as detailed as possible in this short time.
We ask for your patience without upfront accusations on any side.

Thank you!

Eddy


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 27 May 2011 View Post
i read some of your posts and all i see is the impatience you are seeding in this forum. You look just from the side of angry customer.
Hopefully we will very soon have the report for you too.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 27 May 2011 View Post
joel, it is true that there are more ways to nickel plate the metal, and i can assure we haven't checked that in the first place.
But when something is eating nickel off the copper then it's not the nickel, it's something in the coolant. And we intend to prove that sooner or later.

We have microscopic pictures, pictures taken from a sem microscope and as soon as we are ready with the release you'll see the corrosion and much more...


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 27 May 2011 View Post
we have nothing like that in our rma rules.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 27 May 2011 View Post
i don't see nickel at the noble metal list:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/noble_metals


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 28 May 2011 View Post
i am sorry not to answer all the questions.

As soon as we will be ready and we are that far that i can say to be next week, we will issue an official statement of ek regarding this issues.
Until then i will not be able to participate to this thread, as some are just playing on their own whistle without minding some basic facts.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 28 May 2011 View Post
everything will be released with the official ek statement.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 28 May 2011 View Post
thank you!
Yes, we are working on it!


Quote:
Originally Posted by eddy_ek - 28 May 2011 View Post
and what did he had in the coolant?
Btw, i cant see the picture.




Here are some email's received by some unhappy EK customers:


Quote:
Originally Posted by ek View Post
i m sorry to see that. As you probably know we are investigeting problem.
What i know is distilled water is not 100% non-conductive neither is nickel 100% corrosion proof.
Using corrosion inhibitors would stop this from beginning (i know this because i run tests here)

nonetheless, have you tried returning blocks back to reseller as i haven't seen something like that after 10 days of use.

Which bitspower fittings do you have exactly?


Quote:
Originally Posted by ek View Post
in watercooling loops a corrosion inhibitors are always highly recommended. Using ph neutral liquids and diminishing amount of mixed metals will also prevent/slow down corrosion.

These are basic guidelines for watercooling. If users do not follow them, corrosion will appear and it is not being covered by terms of use.



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Old 05-27-2011, 01:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
Joel, it is true that there are more ways to nickel plate the metal, and I can assure we haven't checked that in the first place.
But when something is eating nickel off the copper then it's not the nickel, it's something in the coolant. And we intend to prove that sooner or later.

We have microscopic pictures, pictures taken from a SEM microscope and as soon as we are ready with the release you'll see the corrosion and much more...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
Hey guys.
We are not leaving you alone here.
We have already started testings with many fluids to see what is hurting nickel.

But I would like to ask you to think outside the box. If the nickel plating is flaking, where are the flaks?
What I can already tell you is that the nickel contact with copper is perfect and if you check closely you will see that something is eating nickel off the copper.

We are checking for the cause with our national chemical institute and will some answers and some pages to read for you hopefully till end of this week.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddy_EK View Post
At EK, we definitely recommend you use anti corrosion additive or premixed coolants with anti corrosion additive until further notice.

The distilled water may be perfectly good, but it eventually gets polluted by the time with the ions from the blocks, radiator (brass which is made of copper and zinc, tin and other stuff that is in the loop), but there are more factors how quickly it gets polluted.

I retort all this BULLSHIT with the post below from our very own Rubidium, who holds a B.S. in Chemistry / Physics / Electrical Engineering / Applied Mathematics and a holds a PhD in Nuclear Physics.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rubidium View Post
OK boys, here we go. Red's EK CPU block arrived today, and I actually had some time to work with it.



Conclusion: The black residue in his earlier photos is cupric oxide, CuO. Period.
Proof:
1. Crystal structure of the residue.
2. Instant solubility of the residue in dilute (1N) hydrochloric acid, HCl.
3. Strong positive from an organic dye traditionally used to perform qualitative tests for the presence of copper.
4. Negative from a reagent traditionally used to perform qualitative tests for the presence of iron.

Let's walk through the analysis. First I take a look at the block on the Leitz Orthoplan, using reflected light. The first image is a look inside one of those interior groves in the copper block in a region where there was no fouling, showing the typical surface structure of clean copper metal:



Next is a look at another groove where there was black residue (the focused center region is the bottom of the groove, the blurry regions to either side of it are the walls of the groove, and the regions to the extreme left and right are the top-most surface of the plate's interior:



Shifting focus a bit to the walls of that same groove shows the machining marks from the fine slit saw that was presumably used to make the grooves, along with some trapped residue:



This is some residue off to the side of the grooved part of the block. The vertical lines are scuffs from where Joel tries to scrape some off:



Hunting through some of the grooves revealed some lovely telltale black crystals of cupric oxide:







Now for some chemical testing. Given my hint from the microscope images that this residue was probably CuO, I attempted to dissolve it with dilute (1-normal) hydrochloric acid. That will NOT dissolve copper metal, but will readily dissolve CuO - and indeed it did. Next, I prepared some indicators for copper and iron:



1-(2-pyridylazo)-2-naphthol (PAN) mixed in absolute (100%) ethanol is a yellowish organic dye that turns deep rose color in the presence of copper ions in solution. Here, I have some of the residue in a beaker dissolved in hydrochloric acid, made neutral with the addition of ammonium hydroxide, and I am poised to deliver the PAN from above with an eye-dropper:




Here is the result - verifying that the residue is definitely a copper compound:



A similar test was performed using a few drops of ammonium thiocyanate, which would turn blood-red if iron were present. However, the solution remained completely colorless, so that we can safely conclude the residue contained no iron from the stainless steel.

Tomorrow, when I have more time, I will completely clean the interior of the block and photograph what will presumably be slightly etched regions beneath the residue. A look at these under the microscope might tell us more. One thing that's clear is that dilute HCl will dissolve the residue in seconds without harming the rest of the copper.

rubidium
Quote:
Originally Posted by rubidium View Post
This microscope is something I built up over the course of several years as a hobby from new old stock (NOS) replacement parts and through trading with other collectors throughout the world - primarily in the UK. It would have retailed for about $65K US in the mid-to-late 1960's, but I maybe have put $5-6K, and a lot of patience, into the project. It has a port for a 35mm DLSR, which is how I capture the images.

I took these images while examining the block over the course of an hour or so. With a lot more time, I could really get far better imagery. The thing about high-magnification microscope objectives is that the depth-of-field is rather miniscule. You can really only achieve focus over a limited depth range as you can clearly see in my posted images. To combat this, I can take 10's or even 100's of images at progressive focal depths, typically 1 micron apart, and mathematically process them to achieve a composite photo that has much greater depth of field. Performing so-called Richardson-Lucy deconvolution among a hundred or more 10 megapixel x 16 bits per color x 3 color channels consumes considerable CPU time and RAM. This is one of the applications for which I built Project Erinyes.
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If it were galvanic corrosion, then so-called cathodic protection of the thing you want to protect from corrosion would be possible with a sacrificial anode. Just sticking a lump of zinc in a res does not do that; you would need to electrically connect the zinc to the thing you want to protect.

I still want to do a bit more testing tonight to try to get at the root cause. From what I've seen so far, my gut tells me that it's not galvanic corrosion, but simply impingement corrosion caused by a combination of copper oxidation by dissolved oxygen and disruption of that protective oxide layer at points where turbulence is high (e.g. the downstream side of the "egg slicer" stainless steel plate in the EK and HK blocks.) But I want to explore the clean block a little further under the microscope tonight. I'll also try to measure the galvanic potential of the copper/stainless steel couple in distilled water tonight.
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What is prone to oxidation is the chemical element copper - pure and simple. So-called electrolytic copper (AKA copper-110) is simply copper that has been refined according to a particular industrial process - electrolysis. There are other ways to refine copper from copper-bearing ores, most notably the reduction of finely-divided copper oxide to copper metal in a hydrogen environment. There are continuing debates over the pros and cons of the different refinement methods. It's my understanding that electrolytic copper is primarily produced in Europe and no longer in the US.

Electrolytic copper has no magic immunity to oxidation. The chemical element copper will oxidize under the right conditions no matter what industrial process was used to refine it from raw materials.

The ENTIRE thread, where Rubidium debunked lots of bullshit that floats around this community regarding 'corrosion' can be found in it's entirety here...

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Old 05-27-2011, 01:43 PM   #7
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FUCK YOU IGNORANT INTERNET WANNA-BE CHEMISTS

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Old 05-27-2011, 03:39 PM   #8
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It's really hard to envision something in solution that is attacking the nickel plating. Electroless nickel is a barrier coating. It protects the underlying metal by sealing it off from the environment, rather than by galvanic or sacrificial action. Because of its passivity, the corrosion resistance of electroless nickel is excellent and in most environments superior to that of pure nickel metal or of chromium alloys. When properly applied, the coating is almost totally resistant to alkalies, to salt solutions and brines, to chemical and petroleum environments, and to all types of hydrocarbons and solvents. EN deposits also have good resistance to ammonia solutions, to organic acids, and to reducing acids. They are only significantly attacked by strongly oxidizing media, such as strong nitric acid. Another would be sulfuric acid above 85% concentration (below 85% and it acts like a reducing acid to nickel.) Another way to attack nickel is to expose it to an oxidizer (like H2O2) along with a complexing agent (like ammonia). But it's ridiculous to think that you have reagents of that sort circulating in your loop.

We spent considerable time and effort identifying oxygen-saturated water at high flow rates as a major culprit of copper block corrosion in cooling loops (so-called impingement corrosion). In contrast, there are studies that indicate the corrosion of rate of nickel in oxygen-saturated water to be less than 0.1 micron per year at temperatures as high as 95C. This is why during our earlier testing I suggested nickel plating would be one way to alleviate the problem of impingement corrosion (eliminating dissolved gases in the water would be another.)

Poor surface preparation is almost always the reason underscoring plating failure. Residual soils within grooves or pits on the copper surface are always problematic, and meticulous cleaning is the only way to avoid these problems. In that vein, it also helps to minimize the surface imperfections caused by machining that appear so prevalent in commercial copper blocks. Everyone is in a hurry to shit blocks out and make money as fast as possible that high rates of horizontal feeds on milling machines leave those gross swirl marks that we're all too familiar with. Those same swirl marks trap dirt.
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Old 05-27-2011, 04:05 PM   #9
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I should also point out that with complex surfaces, like those common to the interiors of water blocks, electroplated nickel rarely does well at depositing uniformly on the substrate, particularly on inside corners and in the regions between closely-spaced parallel surfaces (like in between slotted structures). That's because electric field strengths are significantly reduced in these regions. It is also common with electrodeposition for microscopic bubbles of hydrogen to form and adhere to surfaces, causing plating to be "porous" due to the masking by these bubbles. This is especially common when the plater is impatient and runs the current too high, and/or uses a formula that lacks a surfactant (wetting agent). Similar problems emerge from dirty plating tanks if the shop doesn't adequately filter and agitate the electrolyte (usually continuous 1-micron filtration is implemented in a good shop, and a good shop covers the tank for fine work.)

Electroless nickel is really the process of choice when plating these things, as it avoids many of the above problems. It would be nice to know what process EK uses.
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Old 05-27-2011, 04:20 PM   #10
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Jeez, would have been nice to know a week or two ago. I just bought an EK Supreme from Gary. I do have to say, the plating does look very nice. I was actually quite impressed. I hope mine is a one-off and no probs. The only real blemish I can see is some of the plating 'ran' slightly around the Supreme lettering. Might this be one of yours Red? I am not being sarcastic. The plating job looks fine so far, that is why I am asking. I havent opened up the block yet to see inside yet.

Also, this maybe a question for Rubidium, but I thought as long as everything was copper or brass, no worries of corrosion even if nickle plating is shit. Please correct me if I am wrong as I may have missed something.
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Old 05-27-2011, 04:26 PM   #11
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i have an ek nickel plated fc gpu block,but i am going to get it up and running soon,and we will see what happens
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Old 05-27-2011, 04:41 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by xmanrigger View Post
Also, this maybe a question for Rubidium, but I thought as long as everything was copper or brass, no worries of corrosion even if nickle plating is shit. Please correct me if I am wrong as I may have missed something.
What Rubidium referred to as "so-called impingement corrosion" in one of the last few posts is what he's talking about. From what I recall of his posts in the HK gunk thread, what many of us have seen in our high-flow high-impingement CPU blocks is corrosion made up of cuprous oxide and/or cupric oxide due to reaction(s) between dissolved gasses in the fluid and the copper itself.

As I recall, his recommendations have been to either seek to prevent such a reaction either through seeking to remove such dissolved gasses, and/or plating blocks with a substance that does not suffer reactions of anywhere near the same magnitude with said dissolved gasses.
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Old 05-27-2011, 04:46 PM   #13
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Jeez, would have been nice to know a week or two ago. I just bought an EK Supreme from Gary. I do have to say, the plating does look very nice. I was actually quite impressed. I hope mine is a one-off and no probs. The only real blemish I can see is some of the plating 'ran' slightly around the Supreme lettering. Might this be one of yours Red? I am not being sarcastic. The plating job looks fine so far, that is why I am asking. I havent opened up the block yet to see inside yet.

Also, this maybe a question for Rubidium, but I thought as long as everything was copper or brass, no worries of corrosion even if nickle plating is shit. Please correct me if I am wrong as I may have missed something.
If you bought this one, then I plated it and it damn well doesn't have a fucked up finish bud...

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Old 05-27-2011, 05:01 PM   #14
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if it was a RRTECH plated block you would not have to ask, there would be no question. so more then likely it isnt. it's really to bad EK QC has gone so damn bad but hell I called it last year and eddy and all those fucks just made bullshit excuses or didnt even respond at all. i believe it was the "WTF eddy" thread. I said it then and I'll say it now EK
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Old 05-27-2011, 05:10 PM   #15
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Jeez, would have been nice to know a week or two ago. I just bought an EK Supreme from Gary. I do have to say, the plating does look very nice. I was actually quite impressed. I hope mine is a one-off and no probs. The only real blemish I can see is some of the plating 'ran' slightly around the Supreme lettering. Might this be one of yours Red? I am not being sarcastic. The plating job looks fine so far, that is why I am asking. I havent opened up the block yet to see inside yet.

Also, this maybe a question for Rubidium, but I thought as long as everything was copper or brass, no worries of corrosion even if nickle plating is shit. Please correct me if I am wrong as I may have missed something.
So as not to mix apples and oranges here, note that the original testing we did here some time ago was in response to several owners of the EK copper block experiencing the build-up of black crud. Those owners clearly ran all-copper systems (e.g. no aluminum rads, etc.) and straight-up distilled water. There was uncertainty as to what that black crud was: organic plasticizers from tubing, galvanic corrosion caused by the presence of the serrated stainless steel diffuser plate inside the block, or something else. I demonstrated that the black crud was clearly copper oxide that accumulated as a result of having air dissolved in the water, and high flow rates. Even distilled water - as "pure" as we like to think it is - has oxygen and carbon dioxide dissolved in it, just by being in equilibrium with the atmosphere when exposed to the atmosphere. If the water were just in simple contact with the copper, the oxygen can be expected to create a thin oxide film on the exposed copper (generally a few atoms thick) and further attack would stop. However, when flow - especially strong flow - is involved, this passivation film can rupture, exposing fresh copper to be further oxidized by the dissolved oxygen, and so on in a continuous cycle thereby building up a thick oxide deposit. We even rigged up a test jig to demonstrate that on a piece of heavy copper foil over the course of several weeks.

Nickel plating was assessed as a means of preventing this "impingement corrosion" cycle. It is well known that the passivation film that becomes established on nickel is very strong, which also explains why stainless steels are so resistant to corrosion even when exposed to mechanical abuse. As a "copper lover", I also think that an alternative solution to impingement corrosion is to take steps to scavenge the loop water of oxygen if one wants to retain copper blocks without plating and not get the black crud building up inside.

The real theme of this thread is understanding how a nickel plated copper block can corrode. From what I've seen thus far, I believe it's the poor quality of the plating.

One thing I forgot to mention earlier: Anyone believing that the nickel is being dissolved by the coolant in these cases should take that coolant, pass it through laboratory filter paper to remove any metal flakes or other solids, and then add a few drops of a 0.01N ethanolic solution of dimethylglyoxime. If you see blood red, then indeed nickel is dissolved in the coolant - and then I have to ask WTF nasty shit have you added to your distilled water to make that happen.
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Old 05-27-2011, 05:17 PM   #16
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If you bought this one, then I plated it and it damn well doesn't have a fucked up finish bud...

EK Waterblocks Supreme HF - Full Chrome - Limited Edition w/New Easy Mount
Noper dopers, it was this one: EK Waterblocks EK-Supreme HF - Full Nickel - Rev 2

Shitty, I hope no issues with the fucking thing. I wanted another HeatKiller and kept puting off my order hoping Gary would get new stock. I finally said fuck it and ordered the EK block.

PPCs did have HeatKillers CPU blocks in stock, but didnt have the rest of the shit I wanted. Plus, I would much rather give Gary my money, as he has demonstrated excellent service, support, and products in the past. I do have to say I got very good service and fast shipping from PPCs when I purchased my HeatKiller GPU blocks. Again, I held out hoping Gary would get them, but he wasnt able. And I wanted no other GPU block than the HeatKiller and needed to get some blocks on my 580s.
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Old 05-27-2011, 05:19 PM   #17
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Rubidium...

Eddy is claiming on multiple forums right now that distilled H2O is BAD for a liquid cooled loop. That anti-corrosion fluids are required for us to roll copper / brass / nickel loops.

Then he says that distilled H2O + silver coils is doing it.

Then he says that it's the Feser One doing it. (which has glycol in it)

Then he says it's the distilled H2O + PTNuke that's doing it.

And it goes on and on and on and on, ad nauseum....

The motherfucker can't seem to accept that the ONLY COMMON DENOMINATOR is the PIECE OF SHIT EK NICKEL PLATED BLOCKS.

He is back to the blaming game, blame his customers (the ones he makes a living off of) instead of accepting the blame that he is using some cheap ass former soviet block shithole of a company to plate his bullshit products.

You're earlier research into the problem we were seeing with the copper blocks will soon come into play, trust me, as 'black deposits' are readily visible on almost all the really fucked up blocks.
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Old 05-27-2011, 05:35 PM   #18
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So as not to mix apples and oranges here, note that the original testing we did here some time ago was in response to several owners of the EK copper block experiencing the build-up of black crud. Those owners clearly ran all-copper systems (e.g. no aluminum rads, etc.) and straight-up distilled water. There was uncertainty as to what that black crud was: organic plasticizers from tubing, galvanic corrosion caused by the presence of the serrated stainless steel diffuser plate inside the block, or something else. I demonstrated that the black crud was clearly copper oxide that accumulated as a result of having air dissolved in the water, and high flow rates. Even distilled water - as "pure" as we like to think it is - has oxygen and carbon dioxide dissolved in it, just by being in equilibrium with the atmosphere when exposed to the atmosphere. If the water were just in simple contact with the copper, the oxygen can be expected to create a thin oxide film on the exposed copper (generally a few atoms thick) and further attack would stop. However, when flow - especially strong flow - is involved, this passivation film can rupture, exposing fresh copper to be further oxidized by the dissolved oxygen, and so on in a continuous cycle thereby building up a thick oxide deposit. We even rigged up a test jig to demonstrate that on a piece of heavy copper foil over the course of several weeks.

Nickel plating was assessed as a means of preventing this "impingement corrosion" cycle. It is well known that the passivation film that becomes established on nickel is very strong, which also explains why stainless steels are so resistant to corrosion even when exposed to mechanical abuse. As a "copper lover", I also think that an alternative solution to impingement corrosion is to take steps to scavenge the loop water of oxygen if one wants to retain copper blocks without plating and not get the black crud building up inside.

The real theme of this thread is understanding how a nickel plated copper block can corrode. From what I've seen thus far, I believe it's the poor quality of the plating.

One thing I forgot to mention earlier: Anyone believing that the nickel is being dissolved by the coolant in these cases should take that coolant, pass it through laboratory filter paper to remove any metal flakes or other solids, and then add a few drops of a 0.01N ethanolic solution of dimethylglyoxime. If you see blood red, then indeed nickel is dissolved in the coolant - and then I have to ask WTF nasty shit have you added to your distilled water to make that happen.
Fuck Rubidium, you are worth your weight in Crack. Oh wait, gold prices are higher than Crack now. I stand corrected, you are worth your weight in rhodium!

Thanks for the reply YRH.

EDIT: I would only like to add: How much more clear can the 2 posts directly below this one be? Fuck me, you da man Rubi.
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Old 05-27-2011, 05:52 PM   #19
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The question of metal "nobility" has arisen in this discussion in the context of galvanic corrosion, and the word is being used loosely. Let's be careful with terms. "Nobility" of a single metal in isolation is not the issue here, and is meaningless when discussing galvanic interaction. In galvanic corrosion, when two dissimilar metals are placed in intimate contact to form a closed electrical cell, the "anodic" or "less noble" participant is the one that will be attacked while the "cathodic" or "more noble" participant will be protected. But you have to have two dissimilar partners to have a cell in the first place! Technically, galvanic corrosion will attack the least noble metal whenever ANY two dissimilar metals are combined in a cell. However, it is the relative difference in electrochemical potentials that drives the rate at which galvanic interaction will proceed. Aluminum will corrode rapidly when it forms an electrochemical cell with copper. Copper will corrode very slowly when it forms an electrochemical cell with nickel.

The point that's being missed in this thread is that if the nickel plating were intact and completely enveloping the copper, then there would be no electrochemical cell to even consider. If the plating is pitted or otherwise incomplete, then the pit, scratch, or other unfortunate exposure of copper to nickel via an electrically conducting fluid would create a localized "battery" at which galvanic corrosion of the copper would indeed take place - although slowly. All that underscores once again is a crappy plating job. A quality plating job will not result in any electrochemical activity between nickel and copper, because there would be no battery as the nickel would completely surround the copper and offer no opportunity for any electrolyte to link the two metals.

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Old 05-27-2011, 06:13 PM   #20
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Rubidium...

Eddy is claiming on multiple forums right now that distilled H2O is BAD for a liquid cooled loop. That anti-corrosion fluids are required for us to roll copper / brass / nickel loops.

Then he says that distilled H2O + silver coils is doing it.

Then he says that it's the Feser One doing it. (which has glycol in it)

Then he says it's the distilled H2O + PTNuke that's doing it.

And it goes on and on and on and on, ad nauseum....

The motherfucker can't seem to accept that the ONLY COMMON DENOMINATOR is the PIECE OF SHIT EK NICKEL PLATED BLOCKS.

He is back to the blaming game, blame his customers (the ones he makes a living off of) instead of accepting the blame that he is using some cheap ass former soviet block shithole of a company to plate his bullshit products.

You're earlier research into the problem we were seeing with the copper blocks will soon come into play, trust me, as 'black deposits' are readily visible on almost all the really fucked up blocks.
Once again, if none of the copper is exposed through the plating anywhere, then you can immerse the entire block in something as highly conductive as salt water and you will NOT experience galvanic corrosion. However, if the copper is exposed to a conducting fluid via a void in the plating (pit, scratch, scrape) along with the nickel that surrounds the exposed void, then there will be a galvanic couple and copper will slowly corrode. These imperfections that expose copper may be microscopic at first and go unnoticed. You begin to see them once corrosion begins and causes the imperfection to mature into a larger one. You see this happen on old chrome bumpers exposed to acid rain all the time.

The point to underscore - and I should think the pivotal issue being made in this whole thread - is if any corrosion is occurring then it is occurring as the result of a shitty plating job - which is not hard to achieve. To the contrary, it takes meticulous surface preparation to achieve plating that does not eventually undergo this fate.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:29 PM   #21
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After reading the above 2 posts by Rubidium, it makes you wonder who's plating work Eddie is going to fuck up and bad mouth, skewing tests to back up this statement:
"But when something is eating nickel off the copper then it's not the nickel, it's something in the coolant. And we intend to prove that sooner or later."

nough said?
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:32 PM   #22
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Exactly brother, sure does seem that someone is spinning this bitch round and round and round, trying to land it back on someone else.
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Old 05-27-2011, 08:13 PM   #23
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So I guess the whole "we intend to prove this sooner or later" bullshit is something in place so he can do whatever the hell he wants with his customers.

My question is this....what coolant is okay to use in EK products according to Eddy? If he is claiming distilled water is causing this then what exactly is safe in the products? I would also ask the question, why is this same thing not occurring with Heatkiller blocks and aquacomputer block with nickel plating????
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Originally Posted by RedRaider

Quit being a bitch new member. Let me clarify something for you, Rubidium takes a shit in the mornings, the turds that come out of his ass have a much higher IQ than most people on this forum...
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Old 05-27-2011, 08:46 PM   #24
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Shit, I've been screaming this FOREVER!

Not the best pictures in the world, but taken at least two years ago:





Barb on the left was used with Distilled only and two silver coils. Barb on the right is brand new, never used. I've got about $100 worth of barbs that did that.
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Old 05-27-2011, 08:53 PM   #25
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Fuck, why couldn't he just man up and admit he made a mistake. People may have been pissed but at least he would still have some credibility. Makes me want to just steer clear of his products altogether
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