Posts Tagged Repairs

Blender Bearing Repair: Round Three

After half a dozen years, the bearings in the blender impeller felt pretty bad:

Defunct blender bearings

Defunct blender bearings

I wiped everything clean, found the box containing the box containing the tube of bearings, packed the base with more silicone grease, reassembled everything in reverse order, and it’s all good again.

The first repair lasted for a year and the second for six, so I think overpacking the base with grease helped a lot. Maybe I’m getting better at ignoring horrible grinding sounds.

I can do this twice more, although the Jesus clip holding the shaft into the bearing stack definitely needs replacing.

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Hard Drive Platter Mood Light: Failed LED Debugging Assistance

Another of the knockoff Neopixels in the Hard Drive Platter Mood Light failed, even limited to PWM 63 to reduce the temperature. This time, however, I had some help finding the failed blue LED:

Hard Drive Mood Light - failed LED with spider - green

Hard Drive Mood Light – failed LED with spider – green

Spiders seem no less bizarre in white light:

Hard Drive Mood Light - failed LED with spider - white

Hard Drive Mood Light – failed LED with spider – white

A day later, she’d built a small web, presumably to improve the odds of catching something yummy. Who am I to disagree?

I should set up a test fixture for all the knockoff Neopixels and run some numbers. They’re definitely a disappointment, even to a bottom feeder such as I …

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Road Conditions: 2816 Rt 376 Northbound Sinkhole Patched

By my count, four NYSDOT repair crews, one sent specifically to repair this sinkhole, managed to not patch it during the last nine months:

Rt 376 2016-04-20 - Northbound milepost 1110 - sinkhole

Rt 376 2016-04-20 – Northbound milepost 1110 – sinkhole

Good news comes to those who wait:

Rt 376 2016-04-21 - Northbound milepost 1110 - sinkhole

Rt 376 2016-04-21 – Northbound milepost 1110 – sinkhole

It didn’t involve waiting: by random chance, a fifth NYSDOT road repair crew happened to be in that area when Mary rode by. She stopped directly atop the sinkhole and screamed at the flagger until he came over. She explained the problem and, wonder of wonders, this time they put asphalt in the right spot.

The patch looks hand-tamped and will pop out after a while, but it’ll be great while it lasts.

 

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OttLite LED Conversion: Lamp Shell Auto-Disassembly

The converted OttLite hit the floor again and, this time, the shell around the lamp popped free. Given that I didn’t know how to take it apart before, this is new news.

There’s a small snap latch inside the bottom / inner surface:

OttLite LED Conversion - lamp shell - ventral

OttLite LED Conversion – lamp shell – ventral

And two guide notches + latch nubs inside the top / outer surface:

OttLite LED Conversion - lamp shell - dorsal

OttLite LED Conversion – lamp shell – dorsal

So, if you had to get it apart by hand, a spudger-like tool applied to the bottom / inside of the shell and a bit of tugging should do the trick.

It snapped back together without incident, but I really must figure out a bigger base for the damn thing.

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Belt Pack Zipper Pull Re-Repair

In our last episode, the zipper tab on my belt pack had worn through:

Eroded YKK Zipper Tab

Eroded YKK Zipper Tab

I “fixed” that by the simple expedient of running a key ring through the latch that used to hold the tab. That held for half a year, which isn’t to be sniffed at for a zero-cost repair.

A few days ago, the abused latch popped off the slider, leaving the NSA tag and ring in my hand:

Belt Pack Zipper - missing tab and latch

Belt Pack Zipper – missing tab and latch

I scuffed up the surface with a file to provide a bit more grip for the inevitable epoxy, then clamped a brass tube athwart the slider:

Belt Pack Zipper - wired brass tube

Belt Pack Zipper – wired brass tube

The tube ID passes the ring with enough clearance to make it work out. The general idea is that the tube provides rigidity for the ring, the wires hold the tube against the pull, and the epoxy holds the wires in place. I fully expect the sharp edges around the tube’s ID will gradually wear away.

Threading 14 mil stainless steel wire through the slider’s pivot hole:

Belt Pack Zipper - wire opened end

Belt Pack Zipper – wire opened end

… and under the latch guide:

Belt Pack Zipper - wire closed end

Belt Pack Zipper – wire closed end

… required a few tries and produced some nasty puncture wounds, but eventually it all hung together long enough to let me tuck some JB Kwik epoxy into all the nooks and crannies:

Belt Pack Zipper - epoxy curing

Belt Pack Zipper – epoxy curing

That’s wide masking tape covering the work area. As it turned out, good preparation like that meant I didn’t slobber epoxy anywhere it shouldn’t go; had I omitted the tape, there’d be a smear down the side of the pack.

Fast-forward to the next morning and it’s all good:

Belt Pack Zipper - repaired

Belt Pack Zipper – repaired

The missing latch locked the slider in place, but I think I can eke out a miserable existence with a loose slider…

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American Optical Microscope Illuminator: New Bulb!

A classic American Optical microscope illuminator emerged from a box, minus its bulb. Some rummaging turned up a reference for AO bulbs, so I knew I needed a GE 1460 prefocused bulb. Those seem to be a bit rare these days, with 1460X bulbs sharing the same base with a slightly different glass envelope shape. As nearly as I can tell, as long as the filament sits in the same location relative to the base, it’s all good. Five bucks and a few days brought a new 1460X bulb to the bench, a few drops of Caig DeoxIT slicked the holder’s rather gritty contact patches, and the new bulb fit perfectly:

Microscope Illuminator - 1460X bulb - detail

Microscope Illuminator – 1460X bulb – detail

And it lit up just fine, too:

Microscope Illuminator - 1460X bulb - turned on

Microscope Illuminator – 1460X bulb – turned on

That’s running at the lowest of three selectable voltages: 5, 6, and 7.5 VAC, respectively. Given that the bulb spec says 6.5 V (at 2.75 A!), you best have a spare bulb on hand if you need the highest setting. At the nominal 6.5 V, it’s good for 100 hours; 6 V should eke out many more hours.

A generously articulated arm holds the illuminator for desk work:

American Optical Model 651 Microscope Illuminator - on base

American Optical Model 651 Microscope Illuminator – on base

That long snout fits into the pair of holes in the arm of my stereo zoom microscope to cast a bright light directly on the subject. The LED ring light makes that less necessary than before, although sometimes distinct shadows help pick out the details:

Microscope Illuminator Test

Microscope Illuminator Test

That’s the failed WS2812B LED from the Noval tube, which again shows I need a USB camera with better resolution …

The data plate on the bottom of the illuminator, should someone need it:

American Optical Model 651 Microscope Illuminator - data plate

American Optical Model 651 Microscope Illuminator – data plate

The optics cast an image of that white-hot filament out into space, so I think the diffuse active area of a white LED wouldn’t produce the same amount of light on the target. I have some Pirhana LEDs, though, so (when this bulb fails) I’ll see about that.

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Phil Wood Rear Hub Internal Bearing

As part of replacing the entire drivetrain on my Tour Easy, I finally got around to replacing the bearings in the Phil Wood rear hub. The rear axle supports four bearings, with the innermost one captured between the end of the freehub and the aluminum retainer:

Phil Wood hub - internal bearing

Phil Wood hub – internal bearing

The three small screws secure the retaining ring (sitting off to the right) against the bearing. If you don’t know what’s inside, you’d think they hold the freehub in place. Removing them doesn’t do anything useful unless you’re replacing the bearings and, if the retainer rotates even slightly inside the hub, you’re faced with taking the whole damn thing apart.

That bearing is lightly loaded, well-protected on all sides, and felt just fine, so I slathered more grease around it and left it in place. The other three bearings hit the trash can with a resounding clang…

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