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Author Topic: Are defroster fan motors able to be lubed on 4104?  (Read 2567 times)
John Z
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« on: October 24, 2007, 09:28:09 AM »

I took out the heater core to clean and flush, and i am now wondering if it is worth the effort to remove the fan motors. If i do, can they be lubed, and if so, how do you do it? Cold weather is rapidly approaching and i need more heat up front! TIA, John Z
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« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2007, 10:04:20 AM »

You can remove the fan motors Left one is a fun one to remove.
Take them apart and replace the bearings and brushes.
The bearings can be located and bought from any bearing supply.
I re-worked the defroster motors on my P8M4905A Buffalo and it sure made a difference.
Luke at U S Coach has the brushes.
jlv Roll Eyes
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« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2007, 10:36:37 AM »

John Z,

You seem to have gotten the inside track advice.  I hear the word bearing but I have only found bushings in generic small motors.  My experience is that brass against steele is its own lube and putting oil on it will lead to howling and vibration as the bushing accelerates to failure.  It always started off like a real fix but ended badly as the oil/grease got harder.  Replace the bearing and also use the proper thickness of thrust washers.

HTH,

John
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« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2007, 10:41:36 AM »

Thanks guys. After reading your responses, i am wondering if maybe they just need to be run for a while to loosen them. when they are run they do not squeal or make tremendous amounts of noise. But i thought they turned a bit stiff. I suspect the bus had been parked for some time prior to my buying it. Sure was a lot of fine dust/silt type of material built up in there! I think i will just give them some exercise first and see how they respond. If they need to be rebuilt, it does not take long to get to them again.  Again, thanks for the fast response. John Z
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« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2007, 11:58:26 AM »

John,

Here's the page from the manual reguarding the defroster motors,

IHTH

Dallas
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« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2007, 01:15:20 PM »

I would try something with graphite or moly as they don't get stiff when dry like oil or grease. 

Some teflon might also work well.

Ed
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« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2007, 02:27:28 PM »

Dallas, thanks for the picture. I see i am missing the heater control valve knob and rod on mine. Makes me wonder about the PO approach to things. The lever to open and close the front vent is also missing?Huh

Well, i unbolted the left hand side motor, but for the time being cannot remove the squirrel cage, so i am stopped for the time being.

It is pretty warm out today for us up here, so am going to clean up and go for a bike ride.

Thanks again to all for the help.

John Z
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« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2007, 05:57:12 PM »

They should have oil impregnated sintered bronze bearings. After forming, sintering and sizing, the bearings are vacuum impregnated with oil that provides lubricant, which is metered from the bearing to the shaft during rotation. I have seen bearings that sat for a long time and were very hard to turn. After a few minutes of use, the heat caused the oil to flow out of the bearing and they worked just fine (you cannot see the oil). You should not oil them or they will attract dirt, gum up and fail prematurely, but I would oil them if they never loosened up, knowing that before long they will need to be replaced. That being said, and no more than we use them, even after oiling them they might last your lifetime before failure.

Good luck,

Laryn
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« Reply #8 on: October 24, 2007, 06:32:28 PM »

John,

The defroster motors are probably, as already posted, permantely lubed. I've never been into those motors since they run just fine and make no noise. My defroster heat control valve, valve knob and rod  are missing also so I plan to install a plain old ball valve-other types of valves just don't seem to last in hot water situations. I think the original valve also had a thermostat so that may have been the weak link.

My lever to open and close the front vent is also missing so this must have been a common thing. My guess is that the valve and/or door linkages froze up, parts were unavailable and so there was no need for the rod and knob.

The main heater motor just aft of the front wheel on the right side is a industrial size monster that draws about 19 amps as I remember. It is supposed to have grease fittings to the bearings but I couldn't find them on mine. I think I was able to get to one side but don't remember for sure.

I just let it go because I plan to remove it and install much smaller modern bus heaters at the front anyway. It is pretty noisy so the bearings are probably dying a slow death. This motor/fan is way overkill for a conversion.



« Last Edit: October 24, 2007, 06:37:01 PM by gus » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: October 24, 2007, 07:07:40 PM »

Gus, i like your idea of the ball valve to replace the control valve. My control valve is pretty darn corroded, and i can only hope it is wide open, as it is stuck solid. I will have to relocate it around to the left side below where the original know was since i have a ceramic heater mounted on the front panel.

As for the fan motors, i could not get the squirrel cage off, so i guess i might as well run them some. Based on the other posts, maybe the bearings will loosen up some. Right now they do not seem to tight, but they do make some noise.

Also glad to hear that i am not the only one missing the vent lever mechanism. I sort of doubt it will be worth much effort to get that all working again and work up some sort of lever.

My main heater is long gone,,, guess that is why i need to get as much heat out of the front defroster heater as i can.

John Z
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« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2007, 04:36:24 AM »

Hey John Z I pressume you have downloaded the 4104 maintenance manual from pd4104.com.  It has the pic dallas posted.  It's free, I had a hardcopy made as it is easier to read that way.  I think the copy shop charged $20 to print it for me (350pgs)
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« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2007, 08:26:25 PM »

John,

I think that I'll mount the ball valve on the left side of the fan box above the foot heater door so that I directly move the valve lever with no linkages of any kind. I haven't checked carefully to see if this will work but I think so.

The best things about the ball valve I plan to use are the ball is stainless steel, don't get any other kind, and the handle only turns 90 degrees from full on to full off. A brass or bronze ball will probably corrode (Turn green).
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« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2007, 11:32:56 PM »

John Z -

This is just a WAG, so bear with. . .

Back when I was heavily into Corvairs, one of the improvements that came up in the mid-70's was the removal of the OEM heater blower motor/squirrel cage assembly over the transaxle, and replacing it with an OEM mid-70's GM HVAC blower from a Camaro, Firebird, Nova, Buick, Olds, Pontiac, etc.  (The one mounted on the firewall in the engine compartment.)  Important thing was that it had to be out of a car with factory A/C.  Seems GM used a different motor with more "umph" in the A/C-equipped cars.

When installed in the Corvair, it made a HUGE difference in the heater/defroster output - especially in the FC models (Rampsides, Loadsides, Corvans and Greenbriers for those of you in Rio Linda).

So, my WAG, is that, if the template for the squirrel cage backing plate matches the one for your 4104, this idea might work for you.  These things are cheap and plentiful at your local auto boneyard, too.  Plus, you don't have to worry about voltage issues, they're all 12VDC.  (But you might want to consider a relay in the switching circuit, to take the DC load off the switch itself.)

FWIW & HTH. . .

 Wink
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John Z
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« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2007, 07:31:52 AM »

Good morning all. Perhaps everyone else already knew this and i just found out late! I was having trouble getting the fan motors out of the housing. When i opened the housing up, i thought i had to remove the squirrel cage first, unbolt the fan motor, and drop the motor out the bottom. Statements made about how difficult it was to remove them, just helped me to believe this was the procedure.

Well i got the set screw out of the squirrel cage on the left fan, but could not budge the cage. I soaked it up with penetrating oil, but still could not get it to break loose. After letting it soak overnight and still being stuck in the morning, I used a torch on it and it would not move. As i sat there staring at it, totally frustrated, i reached out, grabbed the sides of the housing, gave a yell and and a jerk all in one motion!!! WTH! The housing moved a bit towards me! I grabbed a screwdriver and lifted the lower edge of the housing an 1/8" to clear, and the housing slides out! Well i guess i should have known!

So i unhooked the wires and slid the housing out. Now i was able to drop the fan motors with the cages intact. No harm done, just spent a lot of time trying to do something that did not need to be done.

Gus - now that i have everything out of the way, i was wondering about mounting the ball valve nearer the floor on the left side. Sort of under where the original knob would have been? Thanks for the tip about the stainless ball. I have not bought the valve yet, and still need to figure out how to mount the valve to the bus.

Russ - i was going to drop off the fan motors Monday morning to have bearings and brushes put in. The left side motor turns freely but the bearing is shot. The right side motor is quiet, but turns very hard. So maybe i will swing by the junk yard on my way into town and chk out the motors you mentioned. Thanks guys.

John Z
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« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2007, 09:06:00 AM »




Thanks john

been trying to remove the motors on my old 04 for years. Hope this works

ned
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« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2007, 10:34:16 AM »

Ned, the upper part with the vent flap in it stays put. But eveything below that slid out. Unhook the water hoses, and you may as well slide the core out to get it out of the way. Then you should be able to slide the remaining housing out, fan motors and all. Once i got it part way out, i had to undo a couple wires in order to remove it all the way. Hope it works for you!

John Z
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« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2007, 10:53:24 AM »

When you put the blower wheel back on the motor shaft use a small amount of antiseeze  on the shaft and hub of the blower wheel and set screw so you can remove it the next time. Grin
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« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2007, 03:12:04 PM »

John,

We 4104 owners owe you for solving this problem, now we don't have to wrestle with it like you did if we ever want to remove ours!

My thinking on the valve location is to make it easy to reach while underway, I think it maybe needs to go even higher than the original to make it easy. I haven't done a lot of research on this except in my mind but mounting the valve so the handle can be reached and routing the hoses will not be a cakewalk. Maybe you can solve that one for us too, you're a great guy!!

I have four ball valves already but I'm going to try to find one with a mounting flange, that would make it real easy.
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« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2007, 09:09:51 AM »

Gus, thank you! I have noticed there are flanges on the bottom of the housing, so on other buses it looks like it could be screwed to the floor, mine was not.

Just a follow up on my fans. Dropped them off on Monday at an auto electric shop which i have always trusted for the last 30 years. Basically they let the motors sit there for 2 1/2 days because they could not get the cages loosed. I picked them up and brought to an electric motor repair shop, another place that looks like they know what they are doing. Again, they cannot get the cages off!!! And they didn not bother to let me know this until i called them today... grrrrrr, like they couldn't take 2 minutes to call me and tell me this.

So not sure what to do now, as i was going to use the bus this weekend for a short haul camping trip.
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« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2007, 12:23:49 PM »

Lube’um and use ‘um.
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« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2007, 05:48:43 PM »

 i had the same problem with my 4106 the bearings we loud and very annoying i disasembled them to replace the bearings. they had sealed ball bearings on both ends the brushes also needed to be replaced. i got the bearings at a local bearing distributor and the brushes at a starter repair shop. well after about 2weeks of getting parts and trying to fight with the balls of rust. i tried to get new ones no luck  or they wanted $180 each the problem is the originals have a obsolete stud spread were they mount. but i found a cure i ordered 2 motors from ryder fleet products. i will even provide the part number. blower number 3602 about $38.00 a piece. you just have to redrill the plate were they mount easy. also dont use the factory relay for the 2 speed you just need the 2 wires from the toggle direct to the motors. if you what to replace the blower hose its 2 3/4 inch available from carquest auto parts. hope this helps george!
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« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2007, 08:36:15 PM »

George, sounds great! I managed to free mine up a bit and pretty much have it put back together for our weekend camping trip. I am going to check out those units you mention. That is the solution to be sure. But i don't understand how you can get by without the relay? I am electricly challanged, and i need black and white directions. I can follow those. Thanks for the tip.
John Z
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« Reply #22 on: November 02, 2007, 05:11:18 AM »

just take the relay out of the circut the blowers are 2 speed. the wires will go from the toggle switch directly to the blower motors. so you have one wire for low and one wire for the high speed from the toggle switch.
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« Reply #23 on: November 02, 2007, 06:24:15 AM »

I am sorry, but i still don't understand this. I thought the relay was cutting down the voltage to run the motors at a slower speed on low. If i remove the relay, what is the difference between the wires coming from the low speed switch and the high speed switch? Aren't they both going to be 12v? What will regulate the blower speed? See, i told ya i was lectricly challanged!!!

I looked at the Ryder motors. The one i saw had no mounting flange or squirrel cage on it. What i am going to need are the cages, since no one has had any luck in getting them to budge.

I have read about sticking a welding rod to the flange in 2 or 3 spots to heat it up fast. It was reported that would break about anything loose. Has anyone tried this? Did it work well? Getting desparate for heat up here!!

John Z
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« Reply #24 on: November 02, 2007, 07:36:45 AM »

I was just out to compete putting the housing and fans back into the bus. After hooking up the wires, i tried them out and spot two problems. 1 - the driver side fan does not run on the low setting. 2 - when turing on the HIGH switch the curb side fan runs fine. The driver side fan will "twitch" a couple times, like it does not know which way to run. Then it takes off running which i think is in the wrong direction. It runs fast (maybe even too fast) but hardly moves any air.

I got the book out and everything seems wired up correctly Is there any way to chk out the relay to see if it is working properly? Any ideas will be appreciated.

John Z
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« Reply #25 on: November 02, 2007, 03:13:17 PM »

YOU WILL NEED TO USED YOUR OLD FLANGES USE A HACK SAW AND CUT THE SHAFT OFF BETWEEN THE MOTOR AND CAGE, SOAK IT WITH PB BLASTER THEN PUT A LARGE SOCKET ON THE INSIDE OF THE CAGE TO SUPPORT IT RIGHT AROUND WERE THE SHAFT COMES OUT THEN DRIVE IT OUT FROM THE SIDE YOU JUST CUT BE CAREFUL NOT TO BELL  THE SHAFT ITS SOFT. THE SHAFT DIA IS 5/16 FLEET PRODUCT HAS NEW CAGES ALSO. SOUND LIKE YOU HAVE A WIRE REVERSED ON THE DRIVERS MOTOR, THE RELAY IS JUST FORE THE LOW SPEED FROM WHAT I CAN SEE IN THE ELECTRICAL DIAGHRAM
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« Reply #26 on: November 02, 2007, 04:22:42 PM »

The purpose of the relay and switch is to connect the input voltage to either the low or the high speed windings. There are actually two windings and one is the low speed the other is the high speed. The relay does not drop the voltage, only determines where the voltage is connected to.
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« Reply #27 on: November 02, 2007, 08:15:07 PM »

hey do you have  a press?  Put the squirell cage on the flat plates, apply a small amount of pressure, I use Pb blaster and soak it down. leave it a while and apply some more of both.  If it doesn[t move apply a little heat and keep working in the pb blaster  they will come apart
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« Reply #28 on: November 19, 2007, 09:25:34 AM »

Here is the latest update on my heater motor problem. Brought the motors to a well respected industrial electric motor rebuilding shop and dropped them off. Same story - they could not get the blowers off! They heated them and banged on them (evidence of both methods clearly visible on blower)! They just gave up. They even tried to locate new blowers thinking they would cut off the old ones and rebuild the motors but could not find a source.
 
So thank you George for pointing me in the right direction! The 3602 motor listed on Ryder Fleets's web site is a good relacement for the stock blowers. But as i said, one of my blowers was pretty bent up from the removal effort. I was tired from all this and decided to order new ones.

The motors listed on the Ryder site are made by MEI, their web site is meicorporation.com. The only blower they have that fits is a CW (clockwise) blower. The 3602 motor is CCW.

So if you need to replace blowers too, what you need is a 3737 blower and a 3552 motor. These are made by MEI, but they do not sell to the public. Ryder Fleet Supply had both of them in stock and does sell to the public. Both of these are CW. As of today a pair of each with shipping was about 140.00.

I hope to have them here by Friday, so i can try to stick them back in over the weekend.

Thanks to everyone for their help and support.  Smiley
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