In a similar fashion as the other threads, what is your go to decapper to work with when it comes to integration? What’s your favorite decapper period and why?
I feel like I have not had great experiences with decapper integration but maybe we can collectively pool our experience to simplify it and share work arounds.
FluidX decappers tend to be the most robust in my experience.
I used the LabElite previously, and the instrument itself was alright, but the LVL tubes that we used with it were super poor quality. The bit drivers would fail to disengage caps all the time which resulted in the decapping process requiring some serious babysitting. We worked with them as they reformulated the plastic in the caps to be more rigid, which seemed to be helping the problem so it may be better now, but I never had the same issues with any of the FluidX equipment
They have been one of the more robust platforms I’ve used in this space but they still have a lot of issues. Did you find that you had to modify settings or did they work well out of the box for you?
I recall doing some minimal tweaking but it was not major enough for me to remember exactly what it was, However It didn’t end up seeing super heavy usage so I couldn’t say how it’d perform long term under stress.
Honestly, the LVL/LabElite stuff has made me opt for users to decap either manually or with a standalone decapper where possible. A little napkin math in a past life showed that for our application, we had to have several hundred decaps without incident to make it worthwhile to automate, since correcting the errors generally took so much longer than the time we were potentially saving (and those errors could involve precious samples being dropped). The decapping was so finicky that we weren’t convinced that was going to happen without more messing around than it was worth.
Agreed, decapping is incredibly finicky. However I’m hoping that maybe others can share their wisdom as well.
I’m the west coast LabElite representative for Hamilton and would suggest retooling the LabElite to work with FluidX tube types if you are still in a lab with Hamilton Decappers. This will give you a more apples to apples comparison. FluidX tubes in general are extremely reliable where as your experience is typical of the older LVL tubes. In my experience the older LVL tubes are not the most robust tube types. Generally speaking LVL tubes are priced lower than competitors which is why many labs choose them. In my experience the newly designed LVL tubes are more promising but I haven’t used them enough to fully assess their reliability.
All that being said, we have an abundance of customers using FluidX tubes with our decappers.
That tracks with my experience, the LabElite definitely didn’t seem to be the source of the issue. No longer in a lab with decapping needs, but seems that the LVL tubes aren’t (or weren’t) worth the savings. Would for sure consider a LabElite outfitted for FluidX in the future.
Does anyone have experience with Scinomix, decapping and labelling?