Saturday, March 23, 2013

capacitor capacity

Got another film crew coming out in a few days so I'm back on clean up duty.  Cleared some stuff in front of the greenhouse, mulched some planters with my wood chip score, and thinned the green bean plants.

Had some more trouble with the gennie a couple of days ago.  Had my air compressor plugged in and it popped while laboring to compress. Some magic smoke came out of the compressor motor.  Weird thing is, I checked the voltage on the gennie right after the pop and found it was fluctuating from 105 to 130.  Today I checked it and it was steady at 108VAC....made an adjustment on the one tiny trim pot on the new AVR to 112VAC.  Have yet to decide which tool to test it with (I had tested the gennie right after installing the new AVR with my compressor and everything worked perfectly) . Opened up the compressor and found what I expected - a starting capacitor had burst.  Ordered a replacement from these guys.


Wm. Pugh said...

FYI: Texas A&M University addressed this season will be total drought until 2020.
I hope there not right!
Near the coast in Rosharon

Dale said...

You need a thousand watt or higher resistive load. That way you get a constant current output to adjust the voltage and see if it will stablize. We're talking about a 5-8.5 ohm resistor(s) high wattage....not very cheap and as a project very low on the fun meter.

Larry G said...

looks like "off the grid" does not mean without a need for electricity, eh?

but two thoughts...

1. Dales comments seemed pretty relevant but also wonder if gens get old like cars and people and start needing "parts".....

2. - we who live on the grid not only take the availability of electricity for granted but we also take for granted the quality of it which John is seeing - requires maintenance and pieces and parts necessary to keep it good quality and reliable.

we take all these things for granted in the grid world..we just flip a switch and not only expect the power but expect it not to damage equipment.

K1MGY said...

Careful. The capacitor you selected has an upper temperature range to only +65 C. Given ambient temperature and the capacitor tolerance you may be in for another failure.

I would select a higher temperature range or one with a better tolerance, or both.

Allen Hare said...

Another film crew gets me to thinking. It would have been very interesting if a film crew had dropped in on you every month or so during the first three years of The Field Lab. The variety and quantity of construction and fabrication projects you knocked out was truly amazing. You've created a heck of a little desert oasis for yourself and your critters over the years.

The gen/compressor issue emphasizes how important knowledge, skill, and self reliance are to living out there.