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M-100 Blunder

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  • M-100 Blunder

    With a rather red face I have to admit to some carelessness when working on one of my M-100's. The issue I was trying to correct was a rumbling on all of the pedals. I had to shift the organ to get at the back and noticed that the reverb amp had been relieved of its three tubes by a previous repairer or owner. Delving into my hoard of spare tubes I found a set and fitted them. Started the organ from the back and watched those new tubes glow up. The TWG was a bit noisy so I promised myself a good clip on the ear if I do not add some oil into the funnels. However, the noise continued and I noticed a "hot" smell but ascribed it to the instrument sitting for a while and just warming up.
    Then to my horror I discovered that the start switch was still in the up position! It never disengaged as it should when released so having started the organ from standing at the back I never noticed and not paying enough attention to the obviously excessive noise... The organ was on power for about five minutes in this condition.
    Of course I flipped the start switch down but let the organ run for a while. The noise disappeared and the organ sounded fine, except the still rumbling pedals.
    Could I have fried something by this stupid error? I used the organ and played around on it for a while but did not notice anything amiss even after powering down and up again a few times.
    The worst is that the pedals still rumble and the reverb amp does not work - perhaps the reverb level needs adjustment.
    You can laugh but please do not let me hear that...😖
    Nico
    "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...

  • #2
    The tonewheel generator is normally powered by a synchronous motor whose rotational speed is governed by mains frequency (Hammond made such motors for their clocks). However, those motors are not self-starting, hence the need for the starter motor to provide the torque to get the tonewheel generator up to speed so that the synchronous motor can take over.

    Leaving both motors running together might result in them fighting each other to maintain rotational speed and one might tend to try to turn the other into an alternator against its motor force, hence there would be heat at the very least, and eventually sparks and fire I guess as winding insulation breaks down.

    Alternatively, they both run happily together, but the starter motor gets hot because it wasn't designed to run continuously.

    If there was no smoke, then you may have dodged a bullet.

    I have always thought that the Hammond start switch should have been a momentary push button, rather than a toggle switch.
    Last edited by gtc; 10-11-2021, 10:01 AM. Reason: Alternatively ...
    -------

    Hammond M-102 #21000.
    Leslie 147 #F7453.
    Hammond S-6 #72421

    Comment


    • Organkeys Jones
      Organkeys Jones commented
      Editing a comment
      I'm sure I have played a spinet Hammond with momentary push button start/toggle run. The switch pair was located under the keyboards to the right and above the console speaker. Might have been a replacement starter instead of stock.

  • #3
    Wew! Thank you. There was no smoke - I looked especially when I smelled the "hot". As far as the toggle switch is concerned, in my experience on both my M-100's, the start switch disengages when released. It has to be held up to start the sequence but this one stuck in the "on" position - a lesson I shall remember well!
    Nico
    "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...

    Comment


    • gtc
      gtc commented
      Editing a comment
      The start switch on my M-102 sometime feels a bit dodgy. They do wear out.

  • #4
    On the rumble of the pedals - the symptoms sound like when the pedal board connectors are not aligned. Since this model has fixed pedals perhaps something down there went afoul when I moved the organ some time back. The manuals also appear to have a bass element that really belongs to the pedals - almost as though the pedals and keyboards are coupled. I intend to tie down the TWG and tilt the organ to have a look-see underneath - soon as my back heals from shifting a bunch of stuff over the weekend...😉 Need to fix that reverb amp issue anyway.
    Nico
    "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...

    Comment


    • #5
      Check the wires that go from the pedals to the generator. Often they can break off the generator terminals with an unlocked generator.

      Geo

      Comment


      • Organfella
        Organfella commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks Geo. I shall do that next time I get to the M-100, which should be over this weekend.
        Nico

    • #6
      I bought a parts M100 once that had the sticky start switch. The start motor didn't work and closer inspection showed evidence of a fire with a blackened start motor, about four inches of insulation burned from the ac wires to the motor and smoke damage inside the cardboard generator cover.
      B3, XB3, XB5, M102 Factory Split x2, TTR-100, L162
      145 x3, 251, 760 x2, Farfisa Compact Duo, Compact Deluxe, Lowrey Berkshire, Heritage
      drawbardave.co.uk

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      • #7
        Hi Organfella! I resonate with your anxiety about the starter motor getting stuck on. I was first introduced to the Hammond tone wheel organ about age 7 or 8 (spinet, M3 or older). So I always knew about the starter motor. When I was 12 or 13 I worked on a ranch. The diesel tractor I drove had an electric starter to start a small gas motor, which would then be used to start the main diesel engine! The ranch owner (my older cousin) sternly warned me to turn off the gas engine after the diesel started - or it would burn up! The electric turned off by itself, just like cars. But you had to manually turn off the gas starter engine. The diesel motor was so loud you couldn't tell if you turned off the gas motor! I plowed for 13 hours one day and kept checking to make sure that gas motor was OFF!

        Side note - on a tone wheel organ that hasn't been started for a while, the starter motor may spin but not engage. I have pushed the start switch while reaching behind to manually engage the starter shaft/gear with the TG motor. Fresh oil helps, too.

        Comment


        • #8
          Originally posted by Organkeys Jones View Post
          Hi Organfella! I resonate with your anxiety about the starter motor getting stuck on. I was first introduced to the Hammond tone wheel organ about age 7 or 8 (spinet, M3 or older). So I always knew about the starter motor. When I was 12 or 13 I worked on a ranch. The diesel tractor I drove had an electric starter to start a small gas motor, which would then be used to start the main diesel engine! The ranch owner (my older cousin) sternly warned me to turn off the gas engine after the diesel started - or it would burn up! The electric turned off by itself, just like cars. But you had to manually turn off the gas starter engine. The diesel motor was so loud you couldn't tell if you turned off the gas motor! I plowed for 13 hours one day and kept checking to make sure that gas motor was OFF!
          .
          Interesting thing about those small gas motors (pony motors) They are not cooled by any means, not even by airflow fins because they were never meant to run for long at a time. They were noisy little perts but powerful enough to swing those massive diesel engines into life. Nothing beats the sound of a great diesel engine starting up - except the sound of a Hammond getting going...
          Thanks for your comments
          Nico

          "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...

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