Jones-Shipman 540 Mag Starter issue.
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  1. #1
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    Default Jones-Shipman 540 Mag Starter issue.

    So I finally got my RPC buttoned up and my JS 540 in place and ready to run.

    Problem is when I push the start button the Mag Starter trips and no start. This is the same on both the hydraulics and disc drive motor. I suspect that the Mag Starters are tripping too easily. Not allowing for the sudden inrush of amperage on start. Admittedly just a guess on my part.

    These Mag Starters are likely OEM and the machine is old. Unsure of a date.

    The grinder motor is a Polyphase Motor BSS 170, 1.5HP 3400RPM, 220-440V 3PH. 4.9A-2.7A

    The pump motor is a .5HP, 1700RPM 1.8A-1.1A.

    I can get them both to run if I hold the "bail" down while starting. Once started I can release the "bail" and they run fine.

    I removed both Mag Starters and cleaned all of the contacts and replaced them. I also removed the caps on the bottom of the starters and found oil inside of the caps. Not sure if this by design or from a hydraulic leak in the past. Seems odd that there would be oil in an electrical component, but again I guessed that it may be there as some type of restriction similar to a shock absorber.

    When running the motors draw 1.9A-pump, 2.2A-grinder.

    On Start 5.4A-pump, 12.7A-Grinder.

    Those numbers are from 1 of the incoming lines with my Fluke Amp Clamp. I have seen higher start up amp numbers in my testing. So the running numbers are a bit high, but don't seem terrible to me. But the startup is much higher than the Mag Starters are rated at. The tag on bottom of them says FL Amps 1.98 & 4.75. the caps are adjustable, I have them as far down as I expect them to be adjusted for maximum amperage draw.

    So anyone familiar with these starters? Do I have a starter issue or a motor issue? motor bearings? Can I install a start cap to help out?

    20190813_160544-medium-.jpg 20190813_160550-medium-.jpg20190813_160623-medium-.jpg20190813_160629-medium-.jpg

  2. #2
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    What you thought were "caps" were what was called a "dash pot", and the oil was part of the system that made them function as an "overload relay". This type of system predates the common "heater elements" still used today, so it's likely from the 30s or 40s maybe.

    In a dash pot OL relay, the oil is held in a chamber that holds a conductor and a spring loaded plunger, and has an orifice that would feed oil into another chamber allowing the spring to move the plunger, except that the viscosity of the oil means it doesn't flow. But at a specific calibrated temperature, the oil viscosity changes, the oil flows through the orifice and the plunger trips the relay. Then the plunger can't reset until it cools down. If you opened the dash pots and lost some of the oil, they will no longer work.

    Most of the old dash pot oil was PCB laden, so you can't get it any longer. it was also highly flammable if it leaked onto hot parts, vaporized and then exposed to a spark, like a set of contacts opening! It's time to jettison that dangerous antique and buy a modern motor starter, if for no other reason that for your own safety.

    I saw one of those in a sawmill decades ago and warned the owner that it was an impending fire, he didn't heed my advice and his mill burned down a year later, the cause was found to be that ancient motor starter.

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  4. #3
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    Thank you Jraef. So I was kinda close about the oil. Mine don't have springs, but they do have a hole in the bottom of the plunger that restricts the flow of oil from bottom to top. I guessed that was what was supposed to slow the reaction of the starter to disconnect on the high amp load on startup.

    But I understand your warning and do not mind replacing them with something more modern and available.

    Now I need some advice on how to replace them. I'll need to control each motor with a switch of some type. Preferably a round push button similar to OEM so that it is easy and looks good. And some type of starter for the motors. Do I even need starters? One is a 1/2 HP and the other is 1.5HP 3 phase?

    2019-01-27-18.00.48-medium-.jpg

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    If you are on an RPC make sure that the contactors are not fed from the generated leg.

    BTW 540 motors are rather special as they are individually balanced so try and keep the original one !

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    look at Automationdirect for mag starters and overloads. Really good prices and service. Then look up a 3 wire control for the starters. It's easy! You can get the push buttons form AD also.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrewmawson View Post
    If you are on an RPC make sure that the contactors are not fed from the generated leg.

    BTW 540 motors are rather special as they are individually balanced so try and keep the original one !
    The OEM starters have all 3 legs of incoming power feeding.

    I hope not to have to deal with replacing either motor. But the hydraulic motor seems to be just a typical motor. Might be easy enough to replace it. But then I have to change my incoming power to the surface grinder, as it is I only have 220V 3 phase, no neutral.

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    Quote Originally Posted by greggv View Post
    look at Automationdirect for mag starters and overloads. Really good prices and service. Then look up a 3 wire control for the starters. It's easy! You can get the push buttons form AD also.
    I'll check out AD. I like them for other stuff, but I'm guessing that the price will be more than the budget on this homeshop machine will stand. But it will be a good way to get an idea of what I'm looking for.

    Still wondering if I even need a starter for these motors? They seem small enough that maybe not. Probably just dreaming on my part on that.

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    Its the contactor COIL that mustn’t be on the generated leg. Of course the CONTACTS will take all three phases !!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrewmawson View Post
    Its the contactor COIL that mustn’t be on the generated leg. Of course the CONTACTS will take all three phases !!!
    OK got it. I'm not familiar with this type of starter. I did trace the lines and I have the generated leg separate from the coil I think.

    Here's a picture,

    20190817_122304-2-medium-.jpg

    Sorry the text and arrows are kinda small. But they are there, indicating the generated leg, 3 switch wires and what I think is the coil.


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