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John Hertzfeld

Controller Upgrade/replacement

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Hello,

 

I have a situation that I'm hoping someone out there can help with.

I have an Evenheat PF2329 electric kiln. This kiln has the Perfect Fire, model DTP56DC-E controller. There are three 187-36B600 mechanical relays. There is a single thermocouple.

 

So, my issue is that the controller, after a single test firing a month ago, no longer appears to be recieving power. I have inspected the connections on the back of the panel and they seem to be good. However there is a bit of corrosion on some of the boards components and  capacitors.

 

The physical condition of the kiln is quite good, and I have no $ invested in it other than some new furniture.

 

My proposed soloution would be to replace the non functioning board with a new V6-CF Bartlett controller.

 

My initial questions are:

 

1) Are there other components i should change out now (like swapping mechanical relays for SSR) while I am upgrading?

 

2) If I go with the V6-CF, would you recommend that I install two new thermocouple ports to have better zone control?

 

3) Am I overlooking a more obvious solution?

 

Thank you in advance for your assistance.

 

John Hertzfeld

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Wyndham    98

Check for a blown fuse first. If not that, do you get any indicator lights or display panel ?

The main power comes in before going to the relays, check your main breaker or the power plug(unless direct wired).

Wyndham

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breaker is on, the power switch is on, and it lights-up, the controller's indicator lights are out and no LED. the controller came on for the initial test firing only after a few attempts at powering up, no luck this time.

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neilestrick    1,381

Could be the transformer is dead. It takes the 120 volt power and knocks it down to 24 volt for the controller. You need to put a meter on it to check it. Also possible that the controller is dead, however they don't usually just go black, but rather start behaving strangely.

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neilestrick    1,381

If you do replace it, the V6-CF is a great controller. I personally have no issues with the mechanical relays. They are inexpensive and last several years with normal use. Zone control is a worthwhile cheap upgrade, as it will eliminate any unevenness issues. If you can't fit the added thermocouples inside the box, just put them external and run the wires in.

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If you determine that the controller is receiving power from the transformer and that the controller is dead, you can return it to Bartlett Instruments. Sometimes they can refurbish a controller for much less than the cost of a new one.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P.,

Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com

 

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neilestrick    1,381

If you determine that the controller is receiving power from the transformer and that the controller is dead, you can return it to Bartlett Instruments. Sometimes they can refurbish a controller for much less than the cost of a new one.

 

Sincerely,

 

Arnold Howard

Paragon Industries, L.P.,

Mesquite, Texas USA

ahoward@paragonweb.com / www.paragonweb.com

 

I've checked into this a few times, and by the time you pay shipping both ways and pay them to check out the controller and repair it, it's really not much more expensive to just get the new one. And in the case of this particular kiln model, they were last made in 1999 so it would be worth getting a new controller.

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ok, I'll check the transformer, I had assumed the power switch indicator light workking would indicate the transformer would be good.

 

yes, the new board would be my preference to the repaired old board as the new one is not awfully priced and supports grater freedom in programing, the current (if it were operational) is a single ramp model and is thus limiting.

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So, the transformer is good, and I'm ordering the controller board from Bartlett on Monday. It seems to be a fairly straight forward exchange. If anyone else out there has done this kind of switch and have experiences to share that would be a bonus.

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Ok, so I have the new board, and it fits to the opening on the wiring box.

 

Now, this is the wiring diagram (page 8) http://www.bartinst.com/Pdfs/700techman.pdf, I will not be utilizing a saftey relay.

 

This is the wiring harness for the old board and the stepdown side of the transformer, and one of the relay

gallery_63494_780_27403.jpggallery_63494_780_23615.jpg

I have clipped the yellow orange(center-tap) and red wires and attached terminal disconnects, like those on the transformer, so that it is now compatible with the new board.  The Brown and Black wires run from the bottom contacts on the relay to the harness.

 

On the Relay:

The upper two poles connect to the Elements

The Middle two poles connect to 240Vac

The Left lower pole connects to Brown wire

The Right lower pole connects to Black wire

 

So I believe attaching wires to the board would go as follows:

 

Transformer Yellow to AC1 on Board

Transformer Red to AC2 on Board

Brown wire to Output 2 on Booard

(Transformer Orange to Black wire) to Center Tap on Board

Single T/C to T/C 2 (only runing one T/C for now)

 

Have I got that right?

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All new parts are in, everything but the new thermocouples are installed.

 

Next Question:

 

Should I redistribute the Elements? originally the kiln was set up with a single central TC. Six elements total. one on the top relay four on the middle relay and one on the bottom relay. what is the optimal setup for three TC? should it be two elements per TC, or remain the same?

 gallery_63494_780_67053.jpg

 

 

Thanks,

 

John H

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neilestrick    1,381

Ideally you want 2 elements per TC, but you probably can't redistribute the elements without messing things up. I can't tell from the photo, it will all depend on how they are wired up. I would talk to the kiln manufacturer about that. It may be possible but you may need different elements.

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neilestrick    1,381

By adding E2 to E2, or E5 to E6, in a series it will change the total resistance of the circuit and therefore the amperage draw. Leave it the way it is. It will still be better than only one zone.

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Yes Neil, you're right that would increase the total draw because of elimination of the parallel portion, I totally missed that. What if I was to put the elements parallel as illustrated below, would that reduce the resistance enough?

gallery_63494_780_9087.jpg

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Ok, now we're at about 700. The top and bottom elements are glowing, but the middle four are not. The controller indicates all three zones are firing.

 

Now to 950, center elements are starting to glow.

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Everything went well, test fire finished in just over 10 hours as the control manual described. No error codes.

 

Thank you for your help in upgrading this kiln. I know it's a fairly straight forward process, but it was my first time. I feel confident in my ability now to perform any maintainence on it.

 

Again, thank you for your help,

 

John Hertzfeld

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neilestrick    1,381

Congrats! Gotta love it when things work!

 

Remember that although the controller is showing that the zones are firing, it really only means that it is sending a signal to the relays. It has no idea whether the relay has actually switched or the elements are actually working.

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