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Posts Tagged ‘watts’

Servicing my Vintage Hy-Flo Model C Air Pump

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

Over a week ago, the socket ring main tripped, and shortly afterwards my vintage Hy-Flo Model C Air Pump stopped working, I don’t think this was the reason for it stopping, just coincidence.

Hy-Flo vintage reciprocating piston aquarium air pumps were manufactured by Medcalf Bros. Ltd. of Potters Bar, England. They ceased trading many years ago.

I think they were manufactured in the 50/60s for the laboratory and research establishments, universities and polytechnics some were used in the ornamental aquatics industries, but as they were expensive, many fish keepers, used Rena, Whisper or Hoffman pumps of that time. Most aquarium air pumps of this generation were manufactured from bakelite or plastic, and used a rubber diaphragm, which needed regular replacement due to wear, and were of the vibrator design. Most of the pumps on the market today use this design.

The Hy-flo pump is made out of a solid cast iron block, the Model C weighs approx 5kg, a metal flywheel moves between an alternating current electromagnetic coil (motor), causing the flywheel to start and rotate, the flywheel gets a little hot due to eddy currents induced in the flywheel, even if the flywheel gets jammed the flywheel can get very hot, if it does important to turn off, otherwise damage to the coils (motor) could occur. The flywheel spins on an axel/rod, at the end of the axel, cams connect to a piston and valve chamber which generates air.

My Hy-flo air pump, had stopped spinning. Using a electrical power meter from JLB Electronics, the Hy-flo pump was still drawing 50 watts of electricity, and the flywheel got very hot (see above eddy currents).

flywheel, pistons and cams removed

flywheel, pistons and cams removed

I removed the two piston assemblies and valve chambers but the flywheel still didn’t spin freely when power was applied.

just a block of iron

just a block of iron

piston and valve chamber

piston and valve chamber

cam from Hy-flo Model C

cam from Hy-flo Model C

piston and valbe chamber

piston and valbe chamber

So I sent an email to Sonik Systems for guidance, they re-sale, service and repair Hy-flo pumps (Medcalf Bros. ceased trading many years ago). They advised me that because the flywheel was getting hot, but not spinning, the motor (electric coils) were still working, and it was either an alignment or dirt on the axel that was causing the issue. The axel could be moved, and was not rubbing against the motor (coil). Sonik Systems confirmed that the flywheel should spin freely for approx 30 seconds when pushed with power off. My flywheel was not free spinning.

back together after oiling

back together after oiling

close-up of flywheel

close-up of flywheel

The axel would not move freely by hand, so a small tap with a rubber mallet freed the axel. The moment that this was freed, the flywheel span for 40 seconds un-aided. I suspect due to build up of dirt, and the possible dry/humidity in the fish house, had dried out the oil, and the remaining hard residue had caused it to cease.

Hy-Flo Model C

Hy-Flo Model C

All oiled and working

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Real-Time Energy (electricity) Usage from my Wattson (electric) Smart Meter

Sunday, June 21st, 2009

I’ve updated my Real-Time Energy Usage widget in the right hand side panel to update every 10 seconds.

So if you wait and watch, after 10 seconds, it should change!

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Wattson’s zero Watts!

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

Wattson’s transmitter batteries need charging, hence zero Watts!

It’s not that I’ve installed my own wind turbine or solar panels, and getting free electricity.

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Ghosts in the machine!

Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

ah, the reason no data is being shown is my wattson has crashed and hung. It will be a few days, until it gets over it’s illnes! It has done this before in the last 510 days I’ve been logging data. I don’t know what’s going on here, my TiVo crashed again, my phone reset and crashed, I’m still trying to get my PC working, and Wattson’s poorly!

Ghosts in the machine!

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No data from Wattson!

Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

let me give wattson a kick! there’s no data displayed!

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Real-time energy widget

Monday, April 6th, 2009

okay, i’ve added the real-time energy widget to the sidebar from myenergyusage.org

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Real-Time Energy Usage on Blog

Thursday, April 2nd, 2009

Real-time energy usage readout of electricity used in our house is now available for all to see. Average consumption is approx 3000 watts (3kW). If it increases to approx 6000 watts (6kW) then someone in the household has put the kettle or cooker on for tea! Between the hours of 12.30 - 7.30 GMT Economy 7 starts and in the winter the storage heaters turn on, so expect some high wattage readings between these hours.

Just refresh the web-page to see it change.

I blogged about this here.

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Real-Time Energy Usage on Twitter

Monday, March 30th, 2009

I blogged about my gadget Wattson,[here] if you missed it.

Well with some super software from Crispin called Powometer over at myenergyusage.org, I can now link my Wattson to the Internet and update twitter on my energy usage!

UPDATE 2nd April 2009 Crispin has done some work that now allows me to show you all LIVE power usage in watts!

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Arcadia ArcTank

Saturday, April 5th, 2008

This is my Arcadia ArcTank, it’s the first aquarium I’ve ever purchased that has arrived in a box! But I think that most modern aquariums arrive in boxes these days.

Arcadia Arc Tank 3
ArcTank 20L Boxed Aquarium

Arcadia Arc Tank 1
The Arcadia ArcTank includes an ArcPod 9w lighting unit, which contains a built-in reflector which a 9w tube fits into. It also includes an internal filter not shown. I’ve decided to purchase another ArcPod 9w lighting unit because of the plant selection for my aquascape Nano tank, and these plants require lots of light.

Arcadia Arc Tank 2
Only one ArcPod 9w lighting unit is included, I’ve purchased the second to double the lighting for plants.

To help the plants, I’ve also order a simple CO2 plant fertilisation set from Sera, called Sera Plant Care Kit, it includes

  • Sera CO2-Start - ideal CO2 fertilization for aquariums from 60 l up to 200 l.
  • Sera CO2 diffusion reactor and the Sera CO2-Tabs plus (20 tabl.).
  • Sera florena, 100 ml - plant fertilizer with iron, minerals and trace elements.
  • Sera florenette A, 24 tabs - growth promotor tablets with macro nutrients
  • Sera guide “Feeding aquatic plants according to nature”

It works by filling a vessel with CO2 from a tablet, which then diffuses slowly into the water. I may have to cut the tablet in half, as this tank is only has a volume of 20L.

I’ve also purchased a Dennerle Boden-Fluter 4 watts substrate heating element and sera floredepot, which is a long-term gravel substrate with growth promoter for freshwater aquariums. I’ve also purchased some aquarium substrate called AquaClay.

These are the plants I have selected for my Nano tank.

  • Wood with Anubias barteri, Vesicularia dubyana (Java moss) and Microsorum pteropus (Java fern)
  • Cyperus helferi
  • Echinodorus tennellus
  • Rotala wallichii
  • Lilaeopsis brasiliensis
  • Cladophora aegagrophila (moss balls)

I haven’t decided where to obtain these Tropica plants from yet. But I have several local stockists. I maybe able to do a deal with!

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and this is a Wattson!

Monday, October 29th, 2007

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