Entropy

Relax in southern comfort on the east bank of the Mississippi. You're just around the corner from Beale Street and Sun Records. Watch the ducks, throw back a few and tell us what's on your mind.
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JR.
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Re: Entropy (tactile switches again)

Post by JR. » Mon Aug 21, 2017 2:49 pm

Don't know what is is about me and tact switches, but a second appliance went wonky.. this was my coffee roaster so no $5 replacements available.

I did the old remove and soak the switches in isopropyl alcohol for a few minutes.

The roaster is back and working fine.... :D

I think i will order some replacement tact switches just in case... $0.23 in small quantity so once again the shipping will cost more than the repair parts. I looked around my pack rat pile of old appliance circuit boards and found no less than 4 different style tact switches, none the right actuator height for my roaster (7mm).

JR

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Re: Entropy

Post by emrr » Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:35 pm

I worked on a recording project this weekend that has stretched into it's 6th year.....I should stop typing, you get the idea already......

Tracks recorded at 3 different studios on 3 incompatible DAW's at 3 different sample rates, all songs built out to an almost unrecognizable state from the original live tracking, and requests to mix anything from 'just the live take' to a blend of disparate elements. Several songs had so many tracks by the time I imported all variations, the DAW track view wouldn't expand to show all menu options per track!
Best,

Doug Williams
Electromagnetic Radiation Recorders

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:19 am

that sounds self inflicted... while entropy could be a factor with the tracks returning to disorder.

JR

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JR.
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Re: Entropy-no good deed goes unpinished

Post by JR. » Thu Aug 24, 2017 12:41 pm

JR. wrote:
Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:30 pm
JR. wrote:
Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:41 pm
Well in our onward march to final equilibrium and decay, my latest repair adventure was my 86yo neighbors electric wheelchair/scooter.
Image
We got about an inch and half rain storm the other day and the mobility scooter while covered in plastic got wet enough to stop working.

It was a bit of an adventure to get apart and troubleshooting codes gave me a bum steer.... The beep alarm (slow beep) suggested problem was with the wig-wag pot and/or speed control... (they call it wig-wag not me, but that the forward back control...). I wasted way too much time looking for the problem with it and traced the wiring all the way back to the processor, buried deep inside the guts.

At the end of the day I fixed it with a q-tip and some rubbing alcohol. Apparently the rain water and some dirt or corrosion products inside created a conductive path on the processor board where it reads the voltage of the wig-wag pot...making it appear bad.

I found a secret speed pot inside that sets the max speed so I turned that up. :D :D

Now my neighbors chair goes faster too...

I was glad I could fix it for him for free... I suspect some repair depot would sell him a new controller board.

JR

PS: It looks like there are some 15-20 different versions of these with the guts all made by the same company in China (Pihsiang). I hate to admit it but the design seems pretty solid and the troubleshooting help while not literally correct for me looks like it would be useful for most common repairs.
==========
The last time I fixed this was back in 2014 (i also fixed the battery charger in 2013).... Well it stopped working again, and my sweet 89(?) YO neighbor decided to fix it himself... :roll: :roll: :roll: I happened by while he had it open with wires hanging out all over the place. I asked him to stop and told him I couldn't bear to watch when he ignored me... As I walked away I told him to let me know when he gave up... He said he would never give up. :P Two days later his wife sheepishly called me to ask if I had a minute to look at it... :roll:

I guess I took my time in a little passive-aggressive payback for him not listening to me, but after a day in his car port poking around, I rolled it over to my house and into the air conditioning... The control wiring was really a mess with several wires twisted together... The on/off key switch only had one wire still connected to it, so I knew that wasn't possibly correct. The key switch had a lead with an insulated spade lug on it, but nothing in the vicinity the right size to mate with it. A bunch of wires had insulation stripped off them with a knife (I couldn't get him to explain why he did that but he admitted doing it.)

With my VOM I found the 24v power lead (Brown?) that my neighbor had twisted together with several others. I put a new spade lug connector the right size to mate with the power switch, so one fire hazard avoided ( there is also a fuse in series with the power if the manuals are to be trusted). The scooter innards was too dirty to trace wires back to confirm.

It took me longer than I care to admit to figure out where the mash up of wires should go... The forward-back pot has 5V across it (2.5V midpoint = stopped).. the wiper of that forward/back pot has two different pots (rheostats) in series with the wiper. One hidden under the cowling (as a secret speed control) and the other a top panel external speed control.

As I noted back a few years ago, i am pretty impressed with the robustness of the design with all the wires randomly cross connected and shorted to 24V nothing inside the controller failed.

I just returned the working scooter to my neighbor and very firmly told him to not attempt to repair it himself next time. 8-)

I try to take care of him, because I just see myself in another 20 years, but damn... he made it a lot harder than it needed to be... it was probably only one broken wire that I could have found and fixed in minutes, not days... thanks to his butchered repair attempt.

JR
Image

I guess I didn't tell him firmly enough. :roll: Yesterday I walk across the street to visit him and see the mobility scooter partially apart again? :o This time he didn't cut up any wires but said he was trying to get at the reset button...(it has a breaker in series with the power feed but nothing was tripped).

This time it had a new problem... besides not working it was beeping an error code. I am pretty impressed with the design of these puppies and they have some basic troubleshooting hooks built in. They describe the beep codes as slow, medium, and fast, but without any context how do you know what fast and slow is?

I was able to force a different slow error code, so by comparison the current code was "medium fast" beep. :roll:

"Motor/brake wiring fault. Free wheel lever disengaged." The wiring harness didn't look like the ones in the copy of a 2007 manual I found, but I finally determined which connector the motor/brake was on. The scooter has an electric brake that prevents it from rolling when the motor is not moving forward or back. Apparently newer models have a microswitch on the manual release that the micro brain senses, but this model didn't. It was smart enough to detect an open (?) motor/brake circuit connection.

This morning I tried to take the connector apart with no tools and couldn't, but just me messing with it, caused the scooter to start working again. Later I returned with tools, a toothbrush, and some isopropyl alcohol to open and clean the dirty connector.

Fixed again....This time I gave him a 60 second warranty and begged him to not take it apart the next time. Surely there will be a next time.

I kind of like to be known as the guy who can fix stuff... I don't like having to fix the same stuff over and over. :lol: (for free :oops: )

JR

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mediatechnology
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Re: Entropy

Post by mediatechnology » Sat Sep 02, 2017 5:59 am

Yesterday I got around to changing the air conditioner condenser fan blower motor.

The new motor I bought a couple of weeks ago was slightly longer but I was able to position the fan blade higher on the shaft so it wasn't pushed out of the Venturi ring.

The old motor had gotten noisier and I was afraid the bearings were failing.
It sounded like it was drawing a lot of peak current at start-up due to a loud hum the first second or so.

Running, the old motor pulled about 1.25A and the capacitor current was about 750 mA.
The new motor pulls about 1 A and the cap current is about the same.
I feel more air moving.

Got the inside of the coils cleaned before I buttoned it back up.
Glad this project is done.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Tue Sep 05, 2017 10:39 am

Not sure I should get credit for repairing something I repaired years ago.... But this weekend I repaired my tool room door lock (again). I had to reposition the strike plate about 1/8" lower.

The door hinges look solid, and the door is square in the door frame so it is unclear what moved, but now it locks again. My house is always settling so perhaps the door jam moved?

JR

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Re: Entropy

Post by Gold » Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:57 am

I live in an old building right above the subway. My door jam moves on a daily basis.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:47 am

I also have doors that respond to the humidity...

JR

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:55 am

Easiest fix ever... a few weeks ago I ran over one of my solar powered driveway lamps... While food shopping I picked up a new one for <$3. It would be hard to buy a rechargeable AA battery for that unless buying 25 at a time.

However I noticed that the old and new lamps while similar, looked different at night. Since they were so cheap it seemed worth a few bucks to keep my driveway symmetrical. 8-)

BUT... I noticed the first night that they still looked different... I went out the next day and measured the voltage on the battery and it was almost a 1/2 volt ahead of the old one, so nothing obvious.

Now after a few days of deep cycling they look almost identical... At dusk one turns on sooner than the other, but nothing to lose sleep over.

JR

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mediatechnology
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Re: Entropy

Post by mediatechnology » Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:54 pm

I'd be happy to see a high-quality solar lamp that at least used a glass or non-sunlight-reactive lens. My lenses seem to craze over time in the hot Texas heat and the efficiency drops off.

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