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Dust collector won't start - please help

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Forum topic by gtbuzz posted 01-18-2014 10:56 PM 690 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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gtbuzz

366 posts in 1131 days


01-18-2014 10:56 PM

Updating this thread because some of the info has changed. Original post follows.

Originally this thread was about my dust collector motor making a squeaking noise while spinning down. Unfortunately, I didn’t heed all the advice my fellow LJ’s gave me and I seem to have screwed something up. I took a Q-tip to try to wipe off the contact that was making noise to see if that would help. The squeaking did go away, but unfortunately, I seem to have caused a much bigger problem.

Now, the motor doesn’t seem to want to start at all. When I apply power, I hear a buzzing noise like always and it actually rotates a few times before giving up. I’ve tried checking for random bits of Q-tip inside there like Grandpa suggested but no luck. A couple things I’ve noticed:

  • When I first put the cover back on, it didn’t seem to want to even rotate at all.
  • Now, a couple hours later, it rotates a few revolutions before giving up
  • On really odd thing I’ve noticed is that it doesn’t seem to be consistent which direction it rotates! It’s a 220v 3hp motor, and I’ve never had problems like this before

Any ideas what I might have screwed up? When I had the cover off and I was spinning the shaft that the cooling fan mounts to, I wasn’t thinking about it, but I’m pretty I may have accidentally spun the shaft the opposite direction it’s supposed to go. Not excessively, but I could see doing it for a couple dozen revolutions or so. Could that have something to do with the problems I’m seeing?

Recently the motor on my dust collector started making a squeaking noise. It only happens when the motor is spinning down, and only right before it’s about to stop. I’ve figured out where it’s coming from, but I’m not sure what to do about it.

 

 

The picture above is where the cooling fan normally sits on the motor. It’s a little hard to see, but the part labeled as part A seems to be coming into contact with part B. Part A is attached to the motor shaft, while part B is a thin metal part that seems to have a little play in it. I’m not 100% sure on this, but I think the piece may be designed to deflect away if the motor is over a certain RPM – that’s just a guess though.

If I take a piece of wood and deflect part B a little bit so that it’s not in contact with part A and spin the shaft, the noise goes away, however as soon as I let it deflect and do what it wants to (come into contact with part A), the squeaking noise goes away.

Does anyone know what I can do to make the noise go away? Everything works okay otherwise. I thought about squirting some dry film lube on it or maybe some WD40, but those have flammability warnings all over them so I’m not sure if it’s an okay thing to do or not.

If anyone has some suggestions, I’d really appreciate it.


14 replies so far

View bbc557ci's profile

bbc557ci

543 posts in 764 days


#1 posted 01-18-2014 11:32 PM

You could rub a small amount of lube on it. I doubt a small amount would be a fire hazard. Little WD40 would be ok, but it’s not really much of a long term lube. Try a dab or so of white Lithium grease, thin layer on the suspect part/s. Think it actually will dry up, but still lubricate and therefore shouldn’t collect much dust.

-- Bill, central NY...no where near the "big apple"

View exelectrician's profile

exelectrician

1665 posts in 1117 days


#2 posted 01-19-2014 02:00 AM

Do NOTHING!
This noise you hear is perfectly normal.
What is squeaking is the friction from the centrifugal switch mechanism and the actuator, one part is usually metal and the other is wear resistant plastic. Adding lube will cause dust to accumulate, and cause more issues than you want.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View Picklehead's profile

Picklehead

616 posts in 619 days


#3 posted 01-19-2014 02:23 AM

Mine (penn state 1.5 hp, ten years old) has done this since day one. Still sucks! (which is a good thing)

-- You've got to be smarter than the tree.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

1891 posts in 1183 days


#4 posted 01-19-2014 01:04 PM

>>>>>“Do NOTHING!
This noise you hear is perfectly normal.
What is squeaking is the friction from the centrifugal switch mechanism and the actuator, one part is usually metal and the other is wear resistant plastic. Adding lube will cause dust to accumulate, and cause more issues than you want.”

Yep…this^.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View gtbuzz's profile

gtbuzz

366 posts in 1131 days


#5 posted 01-19-2014 09:08 PM

Thanks for the replies everyone. I was going to just let sleeping dogs lie, but unfortunately I seem to have just screwed stuff up even worse. I didn’t add any WD40 or any other lube, but I took a Q-tip and cleaned out that area in case there was some dust. It seems to have helped, but the big problem now is that the motor just doesn’t start. When I apply power, the motor makes sounds like it’s trying to start for a few seconds, but then just quits. I didn’t put the motor cover back on yet and I can see the cooling fan. It looks like it’s trying to start but then just gives up.

What did I screw up??

View Grandpa's profile

Grandpa

3190 posts in 1365 days


#6 posted 01-19-2014 09:17 PM

Sounds to me like you might have left some cotton fibers off the Q-tip in the contacts. Look again and check between the contact points.

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gtbuzz

366 posts in 1131 days


#7 posted 01-19-2014 09:29 PM

Not sure if that was it. I just blew out the area with some compressed air. Also looked as closely as I could and didn’t see any stray fibers. I did notice though, that after letting it sit for about 15 minutes or so, it managed to actually make a few rotations before giving up. This is probably a good lesson for me to not screw around where I don’t really know what I’m doing…

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gtbuzz

366 posts in 1131 days


#8 posted 01-19-2014 11:05 PM

Something really weird I’m noticing right now. After letting it sit for a few hours, it does seem to want to start up more. I get maybe a dozen or so revolutions before it gives up. The really odd thing is that occasionally, it wants to start up in the opposite direction. Jeez, what did I manage to screw up this time?

View exelectrician's profile

exelectrician

1665 posts in 1117 days


#9 posted 01-20-2014 07:37 AM

Tell me are you trying to run the motor with out fully assembling it? Both bearings mounted and the shaft freely turning?

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

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gtbuzz

366 posts in 1131 days


#10 posted 01-20-2014 02:05 PM

Tell me are you trying to run the motor with out fully assembling it? Both bearings mounted and the shaft freely turning?

Didn’t do anything with the bearings and the shaft is freely turning.

In the picture in the original post, I took off 3 parts – the cooling fan cover, the cooling fan, and an additional cover to get to that switch in the picture. Didn’t take anything apart beyond that. I had originally put everything back together when trying to start it back up, but when I was having problems, I just left the cooling fan cover off so I could see how much it was rotating while trying to start up.

The motor is a 3hp 220v motor from a Shop Fox dust collector. I suppose I could call them today for advice, but I’m slightly worried they’re gonna tell me to pound sand since I actually just use the motor as part of a DIY cyclone.

View LakeLover's profile

LakeLover

275 posts in 630 days


#11 posted 01-20-2014 06:00 PM

Did you check you capacitor’s. Look for an expanded case.

Sounds like a start cap. is toasted.

View exelectrician's profile

exelectrician

1665 posts in 1117 days


#12 posted 01-20-2014 07:16 PM

When the motor is stopped the switch should be On.
When the motor speeds up, the switch, switches Off due to centrifugal force, you can test this action by prying (carefully) on the rotating part that is touching on the stationary switch, it snaps in either direction.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View REO's profile

REO

628 posts in 764 days


#13 posted 01-21-2014 01:43 AM

when you priyed it open did you possibly move the switch on the shaft to a point that doesn’t allow it to make contact anymore? or bent the assembly?

View gtbuzz's profile

gtbuzz

366 posts in 1131 days


#14 posted 01-21-2014 03:38 AM

And the winners are… exelectrician and REO!

REO was exactly right and exelectrician’s tips helped me troubleshoot the problem. When I was messing around in there trying to get the sqeaking to stop, I had accidentally bent the thin metal stationary switch ever so slightly. This created a gap of maybe 1mm at best and probably explains why it wanted to start but couldn’t. I was able to bend it back and made sure that there was clearance once the centrifugal switch kicked in. Really wouldn’t have been able to troubleshoot this effectively without exelectricians tips, so thank you again.

Back to making sawdust again! If you guys are even in the Atlanta area, PM me, I owe you a beer!

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