Need Help Rebuilding Hamm's Beer Rippler Motor

Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
Hi all, new to the forum,

I am trying to rebuild a motor in a Hamm's beer rippler. This small motor rotates counter clockwise at 1.45 RPM. The motor works when running. The problem is every once in a while when plugged in the motor will not start. It makes a noise like it wants to run but sits in stasis. When this happens I can turn the shaft which is connected to a magnetic disk and it will start turning again and run.

My problem is that it is enclosed in the sign and I would have to take it apart to get the motor to start it which turn the scrolls on the rippler scene. Not an option. A replacement motor is $75.00 which I prefer not to spend if this can be fixed. The motor is I believe an AC permanent magnet 'stepper' motor (I am not an engineer or electronics specialist so am guessing on a lot of this). Here are the specs: Age - I'm guessing the mid 1960's Brand - HANKSCRAFT Company Manufacturer - Autotrol Corp. Model - PX-100 60 Cycles 3 Watts 120V 1.45 RPM Counter Clockwise Rotation The magnetic disk sits on a shaft above the windings. When power is applied to the motor the disk starts to spin which turns the shaft mounted on the magnetic wheel with a gear on it. The stator (the prongs connected to the windings?) is magnetized. The stator prongs on the top of the plate section which when put together slips between the slots in the bottom stator. These are also magnetized. Is this normal? The reason I ask is that older watches become magnetized and have to be demagnetized. Could this cause the occasional lockup of the wheel at startup that the stator has become magnetized? Also the magnetic disk seems to wobble a bit when spinning. The bushing/shaft is oversized which I presume is to allow freedom of rotation. The whole moter vibrates some and makes what sounds like what a bad bearing would sound like. I have included pics along with this post. I can take more if you ask. Any idea's or help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to all in advance, Clark Attachments • 00 Motor 1.jpg 23.4 KB · Views: 126 • 00 Motor 2.jpg 35.3 KB · Views: 114 • 00 Motor 3 Upper Plate.jpg 34.2 KB · Views: 130 • 00 Motor 4 Electronics Housing.jpg 33.6 KB · Views: 136 • 00 Motor 5 Lower Stator.jpg 36.2 KB · Views: 122 • 00 Motor 6 Spinning Magnet.jpg 41.9 KB · Views: 114 • 00 Motor 7 Magnet Top.jpg 31.5 KB · Views: 123 • 00 Motor 8 Stator Above Windings.jpg 42.2 KB · Views: 137 Minder Apr 24, 2015 3,366 That appears to be a 120v AC synchronous (clock) motor and gear box, these are generally very low torque so takes very little to cause it to stall, most likely is the gear box has become worn or tight in spots. Also maybe the bushing has worn over time if ran dry. Especially from mid 60's . M. Clarkr Nov 3, 2017 11 Hi, Thanks for the response. It is very similar to a clock motor with the exception of the rotation speed and direction. When you say the "gear box" has become worn or tight in spots, do you mean the actual brass gears (not shown) are causing too much drag? If so I have taken this apart and tested it without the gears engaged. In fact I have tested it with the magnetic wheel (I don't know the technical term to call it) alone in the bottom stator? prongs. It does the same thing and if I put the top plate onto it it is the same thing. So it is at times stalling with the gears engaged, just the stators over the wheel and with the wheel just itself in the bottom half. It does not always stall. Once it is running it will continue running without a problem (at least so far as I tested it). When it stalls out is when the power to the motor is unplugged and then plugged back in. Then once in a while, not all the time, it will just stall and not start the wheel rotating unless I physically turn the wheel a little bit to get it running again. Edit: The bushing in the wheel that spins over the fixed shaft is oversized so it can't be causing drag unless it is working against the fixed shaft coming out of the windings due to wobble. I wouldn't think that is the case as the bushing was oversized to begin with. Not close clearances. Minder Apr 24, 2015 3,366 Most motor of this type needed a kick start to get them going, clock motors did or they could often start backwards if the spring activated kicker was broken/worn. M. duke37 Jan 9, 2011 5,364 If the bearings are worn, you could have the rotor touching the stator, thus preventing the motor starting. You did state that it was noisy. 73's de Edd Aug 21, 2015 3,477 Sir Clarkr . . . . . Relevant to weak starting torque: Check that ceramic magnet rotor and be sure that no loose chips have sintered off and are present on it, to end up between its outer circumference and the 9 stator pole pieces. Sticky tape or constantly kneading modeling clay removes. Check out the 9 pole pieces and see that all are being equidistant from the rotor. . Find a stator piece that seems to be squared off and is being totally parallel to the rotor. That would be the desired and optimal spacing for all of the pole pieces to be from the stator. Use multiple sheets of paper to make a paper shim of that reference units spacing. Use that to check the spacing of the other pole pieces spacings to the rotor and get that same spacing on all others, if others are either in too close or spread out further. Am I correct that the gear train is inside of a pot metal housing and being sealed up ? from your getting access to. There may be the need for oil to be added to the gear case. If this is the case the gear train can be heated to 200 degrees in an oven and then have that one exposed gear on top and you build up a captive dam around it to hold either MARVEL MYSTERY OIL or automatic transmisson fluid. As the unit cools it will suck and pull in oil around the shaft. You repeat until it will no longer pull in oil, on down to a stone cold cool down. ADD ON: Looks like your photo #2 might show the spindles that the unshown gears are placed upon. Thus its not a sealed unit and is using grease on the gears and not being a sealed in oil unit. Any chance that the first gear engaging from the motor rotor is being a phenolic gear, while the others are either being brass or plastic / Delrin. ALSO more starting torque can be obtained by resonating the motor winding with a proper "tuning" capacitance / shunting capacitor for 60 cycles.. But . . . . that would require the help of a friend who has and is scope "savvy" on analysis.. Additionally . . . FIO . . . . . having that rotor in hand: Place a reference tick mark on the periphery of an outer edge of the rotor magnet with a mini Sharpie. Then do note that a nail or mini screwdriver / with a stanard steel blade , placed on the same plane as the rotor shaft, and against the rotor edge will stick to its surface. Then as you try to move it around the rotor you will "feel" the magnetic cogging action of side by side alternate pole positions . Do a count for 1 turn, using that initial reference mark, to see if you have 9 or 18 poles. 73's de Edd . Last edited: Clarkr Nov 3, 2017 11 Most motor of this type needed a kick start to get them going, clock motors did or they could often start backwards if the spring activated kicker was broken/worn. M. Thanks for the reply. I am not sure what or where the spring activated kicker would be. The motor when it normally starts is the correct anti clockwise direction. When it is stuck in stasis if I turn the rotor in a counter clockwise direction it will start and stay running. Last edited: Clarkr Nov 3, 2017 11 If the bearings are worn, you could have the rotor touching the stator, thus preventing the motor starting. You did state that it was noisy. Thanks for the reply. I don't see any bearings on this motor or brushes unless they are below the fixed stator (as shown in pic #8) in the windings area. Could this be the case that underneath the fixed lower stator there are bearings? Also the motor will start about 80% of the time without any problem. It's those other times when plugging in the motor that the winding/motor is making a noise and vibrating like it wants to go but is stuck in position until I rotate the rotor to get it started. Minder Apr 24, 2015 3,366 This is typical symptoms of clock mechanisms of this nature such as the older washer/dryer timers, There are several sources of these type of timers if you need to look for a replacement that may be cheaper than$75.00, Ebay for e.g.
At least you know the rpm output.
M.

Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
Sir Clarkr . . . . .

Relevant to weak starting torque:

Check that ceramic magnet rotor and be sure that no loose chips have sintered off and are present on it, to end up between its outer circumference and the 9 stator pole pieces. Sticky tape or constantly kneading modeling clay removes.

Check out the 9 pole pieces and see that all are being equidistant from the rotor. .
Find a stator piece that seems to be squared off and is being totally parallel to the rotor.
That would be the desired and optimal spacing for all of the pole pieces to be from the stator.
Use multiple sheets of paper to make a paper shim of that reference units spacing.
Use that to check the spacing of the other pole pieces spacings to the rotor and get that same spacing on all others, if others are either in too close or spread out further.

Am I correct that the gear train is inside of a pot metal housing and being sealed up ? from your getting access to.
There may be the need for oil to be added to the gear case.
If this is the case the gear train can be heated to 200 degrees in an oven and then have that one exposed gear on top and you build up a captive dam around it to hold either MARVEL MYSTERY OIL or automatic transmisson fluid. As the unit cools it will suck and pull in oil around the shaft.
You repeat until it will no longer pull in oil, on down to a stone cold cool down.

Looks like your photo #2 might show the spindles that the unshown gears are placed upon.
Thus its not a sealed unit and is using grease on the gears and not being a sealed in oil unit.
Any chance that the first gear engaging from the motor rotor is being a phenolic gear, while
the others are either being brass or plastic / Delrin.

ALSO more starting torque can be obtained by resonating the motor winding with a proper "tuning" capacitance / shunting capacitor for 60 cycles..

But . . . . that would require the help of a friend who has and is scope "savvy" on analysis..

Additionally . . . FIO . . . . . having that rotor in hand:
Place a reference tick mark on the periphery of an outer edge of the rotor magnet with a mini Sharpie.
Then do note that a nail or mini screwdriver / with a stanard steel blade , placed on the same plane as the rotor shaft, and against the rotor edge will stick to its surface. Then as you try to move it around the rotor you will "feel" the magnetic cogging action of side by side alternate pole positions .
Do a count for 1 turn, using that initial reference mark, to see if you have 9 or 18 poles.

73's de Edd.

Thanks for the reply 73. I will have to wait a few days to go over some of the information you have posted here. My daughter is visiting from Wisconsin and a blow up bed has me blocked out of my work station. Once I am able to get to my work table I will go over the information you posted.

Am I correct that the gear train is inside of a pot metal housing and being sealed up ? from your getting access to.
There may be the need for oil to be added to the gear case.
If this is the case the gear train can be heated to 200 degrees in an oven and then have that one exposed gear on top and you build up a captive dam around it to hold either MARVEL MYSTERY OIL or automatic transmisson fluid. As the unit cools it will suck and pull in oil around the shaft.
You repeat until it will no longer pull in oil, on down to a stone cold cool down.

The rotor shaft coming from the windings area does not rotate. It is stationary. The rotor slides over this shaft and spins when running. A gear sits on top of the rotor bushing and turns the gears above.

The gears rotate on fixed shafts as shown in photo #2. So the gears are not causing drag or stopping the motor from starting.

I am also attaching a couple of photo's to show you what the gears look like. In photo's 1 and 2 you can see the driveshaft gear (between the two rivets). The gear for this is pictured by itself in #4. It sets on top of the rotor shaft.

Again thanks and I will get back to you on this post as soon as my daughter goes back north.

Clark

Attachments

• Gear Housing 1.jpg
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• Gear Housing 2.jpg
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• Gear Housing 3.jpg
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• Gears 4.jpg
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Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
This is typical symptoms of clock mechanisms of this nature such as the older washer/dryer timers, There are several sources of these type of timers if you need to look for a replacement that may be cheaper than \$75.00, Ebay for e.g.
At least you know the rpm output.
M.

Thanks Minder. I have casually looked for replacement motors. I would need to do some research and contact some companies that sell something similar. The one possible problem would be finding one that I could remove the actual shaft that turns the scroll on the sign. I will post a pic of what it looks like and what it does.

The side view is an original pic I took when dismantling the sign. It shows the T set into the scroll to rotate the scene. I just don't know if it's possible to replace this T shaft on a new motor so it would link up correctly with the scroll end.

Thanks again,
Clark

Attachments

• Gear Housing 4.jpg
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• Gear Housing 5.jpg
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• Motor Connected To Scroll.jpg
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duke37

Jan 9, 2011
5,364
There seems to be a direction controller to start the motor the right way.
There is a steel plate with a tang on the side which locates into gear 2. There will be a small amount of friction to turn the tang into the gear and jam it. With the correct design, the motor will bounce in the required direction. Alternatively, the motor will try and try again till the tang is withdrawn from the gear. The grease looks a little ancient, this could be washed off but I do not know what to replace it with.

Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
There seems to be a direction controller to start the motor the right way.
There is a steel plate with a tang on the side which locates into gear 2. There will be a small amount of friction to turn the tang into the gear and jam it. With the correct design, the motor will bounce in the required direction. Alternatively, the motor will try and try again till the tang is withdrawn from the gear. The grease looks a little ancient, this could be washed off but I do not know what to replace it with.

I now see what you are talking about in regards to the direction of the motor rotation. The pall on gear 2 keeps the rotation of the motor/rotor from going clockwise. Interesting. I learned something today. So if I am understanding this correctly the motor can actually rotate either direction.

Question: What causes the rotor to initially start turning when plugged in? I assume the winding's are creating a rotating magnetic field across the stator and the rotor has positive and negative poles that respond by attracting and repelling the field on the rotor magnet. What keeps it from locking in stasis?

As far as the gears go I cleaned them up but am not putting the motor back together until I can determine the problem with the rotor being 'occasionally' stuck in place. I thought to use clock oil on the shafts and possibly clock grease on the gear mesh. As it stands the gears are not in the equation as to causing drag to stop the rotation as none of them are connected at this time.

The motor was locked up when I got it. I sprayed WD40 in all the weep holes and shaft bushings I could get to before it was opened up for a period of days. The motor eventually turned over and ran fine. After testing it a number of times before assembling the sign it started to stop once in a while when initially plugging the motor in.

I drilled out the rivets holding the actual motor in place on the gear structure and am at that point right now of finding a cause/fix for the occasional dead spot when the motor is plugged in.

Again thank you for the info,

Clark

duke37

Jan 9, 2011
5,364
Question: What causes the rotor to initially start turning when plugged in? I assume the winding's are creating a rotating magnetic field across the stator and the rotor has positive and negative poles that respond by attracting and repelling the field on the rotor magnet. What keeps it from locking in stasis?
There is no rotating magnetic field, just an alternating field so that the rotor will vibrate forwards and backward, eventually jumping on the the next position. This may be forwards or backwards. The synchronous clock in my kitchen has a tendancy to start backwards, I do not know why. This is a pain since I have to shift the washing machine to get at the plug.

Directional AC motors have two windings, fed out of phase or a shaded pole to shift part of the field.

Minder

Apr 24, 2015
3,366
The pall on gear 2 keeps the rotation of the motor/rotor from going clockwise. Interesting. I learned something today. So if I am understanding this correctly the motor can actually rotate either direction.

Question: What causes the rotor to initially start turning when plugged in? I assume the winding's are creating a rotating magnetic field across the stator and the rotor has positive and negative poles that respond by attracting and repelling the field on the rotor magnet. What keeps it from locking in stasis?

That was what I was refering to in post #4, when the start pulser failed, it was it was common to see a clock running backwards!
The start direction is arbitrary, depending on the actual position of the rotor under a pole.
M.

Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
Sir Clarkr . . . . .

Relevant to weak starting torque:

Check that ceramic magnet rotor and be sure that no loose chips have sintered off and are present on it, to end up between its outer circumference and the 9 stator pole pieces. Sticky tape or constantly kneading modeling clay removes.
Check out the 9 pole pieces and see that all are being equidistant from the rotor. .
Find a stator piece that seems to be squared off and is being totally parallel to the rotor.
That would be the desired and optimal spacing for all of the pole pieces to be from the stator.
Use multiple sheets of paper to make a paper shim of that reference units spacing.
Use that to check the spacing of the other pole pieces spacings to the rotor and get that same spacing on all others, if others are either in too close or spread out further.

Am I correct that the gear train is inside of a pot metal housing and being sealed up ? from your getting access to.
There may be the need for oil to be added to the gear case.
If this is the case the gear train can be heated to 200 degrees in an oven and then have that one exposed gear on top and you build up a captive dam around it to hold either MARVEL MYSTERY OIL or automatic transmisson fluid. As the unit cools it will suck and pull in oil around the shaft.
You repeat until it will no longer pull in oil, on down to a stone cold cool down.

Looks like your photo #2 might show the spindles that the unshown gears are placed upon.
Thus its not a sealed unit and is using grease on the gears and not being a sealed in oil unit.
Any chance that the first gear engaging from the motor rotor is being a phenolic gear, while
the others are either being brass or plastic / Delrin.

ALSO more starting torque can be obtained by resonating the motor winding with a proper "tuning" capacitance / shunting capacitor for 60 cycles..

But . . . . that would require the help of a friend who has and is scope "savvy" on analysis..

Additionally . . . FIO . . . . . having that rotor in hand:
Place a reference tick mark on the periphery of an outer edge of the rotor magnet with a mini Sharpie.
Then do note that a nail or mini screwdriver / with a stanard steel blade , placed on the same plane as the rotor shaft, and against the rotor edge will stick to its surface. Then as you try to move it around the rotor you will "feel" the magnetic cogging action of side by side alternate pole positions .
Do a count for 1 turn, using that initial reference mark, to see if you have 9 or 18 poles.

73's de Edd

.

I cleaned the rotor and the stator of any filings or dirt. I couldn't test the gaps between the rotor and stator because the rotor actually wobbles while it moves (at least taken down at this stage without the top stator and the gears meshing up.).

I tested the rotor as you suggested using a pin placed across it. I could feel the pin being repelled (like the same pole on a magnet getting close) and as I rotated the rotor it would jump ahead. I have to say it was not a very accurate or conclusive test the way I tried to test it. It did seem like there were at least 9 and possibly up to 18 area's this did move. Some appeared not as strong as others.

I made a movie of the rotor turning when power was supplied. It is about a 25 mb file. It appears you can't upload mpeg movie files on the site so I will have to figure some other means to make it viewable or a way to download it. I will have to get back to all on this.

If you could see the movie........

I used a roller switch to turn off and on the power to the motor. In the movie you can hear the 'click' when I turned off the power. In the test I started and stopped the motor frequently.

When the rotor would hang up I turned off the power. I then reapplied power and usually on the first try the rotor would start moving again. A couple of times I had to start and stop power 2 or 3 times before the rotor would start to rotate on it's own.

At those times when I applied power and the rotor did not turn it seemed to vibrate in place. You could see the white dots I put on it just vibrate very fast a short distance back and forth. This also caused the case to vibrate and start to move on my desk. When I turned off power the rotor would move a short distance away from where it was in stasis and stop.

Here are the time points in the movie when the rotor was stuck:
A. - 47 sec
B. - 59 sec
C. - 1:34
D. - 1:56
E. - 2:59 through 3:40
F. - 4:20

Keep in mind I was turning this on and off throughout the test to get these points. Once running the rotor continued to run until power was discontinued. The last test I performed I let the motor run for 11 minutes without a hitch. No stoppage. So the problems seem to be at startup with a small percentage of the time being stuck.

EDIT: After running for 11 minutes the motor case was semi hot. I could touch it without a problem and hold it but it was warm.

Anyway let me know what all of you think. It's a pretty boring 4 min 39 sec movie but I expect to win an award at the Sundance Festival.

Last edited:

Apr 24, 2015
3,366

Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
Utube?
M.
Thanks, that may work.

At this time I don't know a thing about how to put anything on youtube but I will check it out. I could also put it on my personal website if I can figure out how. It may take a few days to figure this out. When I do I will get back to this to let any interested know.

Clarkr

Nov 3, 2017
11
Utube?
M.

Hi people,

I figured out how to post the video on YouTube. Here is the URL:

Here are the time points in the movie when the rotor was stuck:
A. - 47 sec
B. - 59 sec
C. - 1:34
D. - 1:56
E. - 2:59 through 3:40
F. - 4:20

Thanks Minder and all who have helped me.

Clark

73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
3,477

Sir Clark . . . . . . .r . . . .

Seems like I now remember seeing these, from starting back in the 1940's-50's-60's and maybe lastly, possibly on up into the '70's ?.
THE VISUAL EFFECT:
Was being in accordance as to HOW MUCH of an animated area was needed to be created:
For a small area they had a larger single horizontally rotating drum, or for a larger animated area, they had a horizontal sheet of plastic, being continuously rotated between a top and bottom drum.This motor provided the drum turning action.
On this clear plastic film, that was either used ALL AROUND a single drum, or between the two drums, there was being the subtle wave pattern lithographed upon the clear plastic sheet. That pattern used multiple shades of blues with tinges / traces of silver and white thrown in.That horizontal pattern was taking a very slight slope downwards from being at a true horizontal level from left to right.
There was a second sheet that was STATIONARY and was mounted such that it almost touched the mobile sheet just mentioned, except that sheets pattern had a slight slope upwards from being horizontal.
THEN, when you power up the rotating portion, the viewed intermixing of the two patterns will create a subtle rippling and animated wave effect. Seems like its internal lighting was being a small, adequately long, strip flourescent tube .

Now . . . . . in referencing to your olde tyme video:

One can definitely see the eccentric action of the motor rotor magnet, and, do duly NOTE, that is ALSO being true of the very central brass portion that is right up near the center shaft, that the rotor spins upon.
But I will bet that the brass collars internal hole fits snugly into that central shaft with no slop from long time use frictional wearout.
Also, it is thereby just being a gamble on the rotor even starting rotation on initial power up, with just a pole piece growl coming from it, and that immobility, when the rotor ends up being at certain motor rotor / to / pole piece combinations...

INTERJECTION:

Remember mentioning the possibility of this type of motor starting up backwards ? That's being a definite impossible PROBLEM on a clock.
But, in your situation, merely a transition of the subtle wave /ripple effect to the other direction . . . so no problem.
Your problem is just that of getting the motor to start and run on an initial power application.

I will toss in one involved different testing / evaluation being seen, and that is gravity, aren't you NOW evaluating that motor with it being 90 degrees in error from its normal operational mounting position on the unit ?
Which I don't think will be the solution, but there is the probability of gravitational effect on the heavy side on the rotor, in coasting to its heavier side down . . . final resting position, which might end up in a resultant and favorable specific rotor pole sector / to stator pole piece set that is more favorable to start up on initial power up.

PRESENT SITUATION:

I noticed that of all of your start ups that there was no pronounced favoring of starts offs in CW or CCW direction
as I was being able to ascertain by your marked on white reference dots.

Now, lets consider that eccentric motor rotor magnet on the unit, and that ONE point on it, that is extended out the very greatest distance from the center shaft that the whole multi poled rotor magnet that it rotates upon.
If that portion ends up to be resting across from a stator pole that is positioned closer to it, than others would be, it seems logical for that magnetic imbalance, as referenced to the other pole pieces attractions of the unit, would leave that pair so attracted to each other, that the unit would just growl. With no spin action, due to the magnetic imbalance.
Go back to my prior suggestion, and this time identify and make a reference MARK at that point on the rotors periphery which extends out the very MOST . . . . . in its eccentric pattern.
( Hold a pencil and brace it solid and gradually move it in micro moves, ever closer to the rim of the rotor. Then you spin the rotor by hand and start detecting those intermittent pencil lead touches. Those touch points are your reference to transfer up to the top of the rotor and mark up there..
Then you use that marked rotor point to sequentially move around to each stator pole, one at a time, to see which one of the nine is being the very closest to that rotors reference of extreme eccentricity. Mark that very closest stator units tip with a black magic marker.
Do the same test with the positioning of the rotor again , but this time see which stator unit tip ends up being the fartherest away from that extreme eccentricity point on the motor rotor magnet.
Then, if you find that as that rotor is moved around to each stator piece that there are variances, initially adjust the closer pole pieces to that rotors extreme eccentricity point, so that they are spaced out so as to be the same spacing as the second tests most distant stator was found to be at.
Hopefully that should help to partially balance out the stator pole pieces to the rotor at its extreme eccentricity, so that a rotor spin action would be produced, instead of just an initial and immobile strong attraction between two . . . too close . . . magnetic fields, producing a close magnetic attraction and a resultant .HUMMMMM. . . . but no movee-movee.

DUM-DUM FINAL SYNOPSIS . . . .

If the extreme outwardly eccentric point of the 9 pole radial motor magnet comes to rest at a stator pole piece that is set in closer than the others, it is less likely to create a starting spin, but instead, to just sit there and attract towards it and hummmm instead..

What 'chu thank ?

73's de Edd

.

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