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Trying to repair a circuit board for a rolling ball clock

73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
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I'm sorry but I don't understand where you want me to solder/tack a wire across.
I feel sure that you properly read out / interpreted the initial jumpering of the new 220 across the 100 ufd associated with the 1.5 V filtering.
But on the involved board end . . . . . . . that has longer span between the extreme corners - and + connections . . . . . will thereby require a solder tacking on of a wire to one cap wire leads end, in order to extend THAT cap wire leads length to reach the distant corner connection..
(Unless you have / and / use a clip lead .)


If your battery powered utilization proves fruitful, that further might suggest a time related gradual deterioration of the E-cap filter within the warm running environs of the wall wart . . . . . after 10 yrs of use..
 
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Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
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I'm sorry but I don't understand where you want me to solder/tack a wire across.
I feel sure that you properly read out / interpreted the initial jumpering of the new 220 across the 100 ufd associated with the 1.5 V filtering.
But on the involved board end . . . . . . . that has longer span between the extreme corners - and + connections . . . . . will thereby require a solder tacking on of a wire to one cap wire leads end, in order to extend THAT cap wire leads length to reach the distant corner connection..
(Unless you have / and / use a clip lead .)


If your battery powered utilization proves fruitful, that further might suggest a time related gradual deterioration of the E-cap filter within the warm running environs of the wall wart . . . . . after 10 yrs of use..

Battery powered just failed after a few hours (about the same as the wall wart.) Clock still working but arm never triggers.
 

73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
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It might be a good idea to now do the fresh solder reflow soldering of all of the solder joints on the PCB as by earlier mentioned procedure.
 

Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
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It might be a good idea to now do the fresh solder reflow soldering of all of the solder joints on the PCB as by earlier mentioned procedure.

I am not a professional solderer (maybe not even good enough to be an amateur) but I gave it a shot.

First image is the "before" and the second image the "after"

Not sure I improved anything (hopefully didn't make things worse) but at least the clock is working.

Currently on batteries where I intend to leave it for a while. Since the wall wart puts out 6.3v even though the switch shows 4.5v I think it is time to get a new one.
 

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Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
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The clock seemed to run fine until about 12:30 am this morning when it stopped rotating again. I removed and replaced the batteries but no arm rotation. I left the batteries out overnight and reinstalled this morning and the clock worked again.

Could the caps be causing this issue?
 

Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
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It might be a good idea to now do the fresh solder reflow soldering of all of the solder joints on the PCB as by earlier mentioned procedure.
I am giving up. I can get a 1 rpm clock motor and make the clock functional rather than trying to troubleshoot with my limited ability and skill set. Thanks for putting up with me!
 

73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
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Sir @Iguanaman . . . . .​


Most humble apologies on the time offset delay . . . . of reply.

Looking at your soldering, I believe that we can now not worry about the possibility of a solder joint connectivity issue.
With concentration now being on two aspects . . .
1. The provision of a DC supply of ~1.5 VDC to your clocks timer portion.
2. The provision and adequacy of the ~4.5 VDC supply to run the motor that drives the ball pendulum arm, for its 1
turn cycle and then a resting.
(Would my guess-timation of a 5-10 second cycle be correct, with an ensuing 50-55 second resting time ? )

Now I have done a re-read back, to see if you gave the summation of the battery voltage of its series strung cells.
Not finding it, so can I expect 3 series "C" cells for 4.5 VDC with new cells installed .
THEN we would see the battery stacks negative terminal coming into the top corner of the PCB.
The battery + comes into the bottom corner

NOW hows about we concentrate on that clocks power supply and have you take a single C cell and connect two wires **********one to each end and run those wires directly to the RED CIRCLE and BLACK CIRCLE in the top left corner of my mark up.
That will give constant DC battery power to the clocks dedicated 1 minute timer portion.
From other owners comments, we might now expect 3-4 months of run time from that single "C" cell, until the inability to run on that
cells depleted voltage level.
If you then plug in the wall wart and use it as it has been used for 10 yrs, we will then be depending upon that DC supply for the gear train motor drive and its associated ball pendulum drop.
If you can repeatedly have success in making that mechanism cycle by placing a wire short across the YELLOW or parallel connected RED switch wires, that portion is not being at fault.

*********
HOWYOUDODAT?

I'll just bet that your soldering iron doesn't have enough THERMAL OOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMPPPPPTTTTTTHHHHH to be able solder onto those end caps, with the cells metallic mass siphoning away heat like an ice cube.
I even think that my 320W Weller gun would be taking a loooong warm up time.
An alternate . . . . . is to prepare the wires ends by forming one of each ends into concentrically decreasing spirals that then get pressed into the cell centers and initially taped down to hold in place and then cut multiple cardboard squares 1/2 the diameter of the cell ends to press against the centers, and then tightly winding tape or twine binding from end to end, to continually hold pressure on the end caps.
Then the loose wire ends get soldered to the PCB's top left corners marked up RED & BLACK circle solder blobs.
Then hook up and see if the main 1 minute clock runs . . . . . and if ever stopping . . . . then confirm that the "C" cell is still feeding its required 1.5 VDC.
I think that when you read 0.85 VDC on that supply line, was when the screw to bared copper foils was shorting and altering the regulated supply.
Since, that thus created misconnection was affecting the two FAR right side transistors which form a voltage regulator circuit to develop the 1.5 VDC from the main supply voltage.
I am including this MARK UP addition below , which I will be explaining in detail if so required later. The RED line path is the power flow to the motor driver transistor .
LUCKILY, when you jumper wired from your red circle , you just applied 4.5 VDC direct to the gear train motor and bypassed the main driver transistor. Then, as soon as the bottom, red wired, micro switch closed, it cycled on its own until getting back to its park position.
Normally, consulting the referencing below, the RED 4.5 supply line ( less the .7 volt drop of the series inserted 1N4007 steering diode ) takes a foil path up sweep to connect to the top lead of a 4.7K resistor which then has the resistors bottom lead routed downward to 3 hole pad which it shares with the RED and Yellow switch wires.
Then, the timer, in making a yellow switch closure takes the voltage and current reduced output of that 4.7K resistor to the left to the base of the motor driver transistor where its conduction then starts the gear train motor.

Now lets experiment and therewith, hope for monthly updates of . . . its still running !. . .
HOWEVER, if it stops and STILL has its 1.5 clock run voltage, I'm then fully suspect of that 1 RPM mechanism.

ITS MARK UP TYME . . . . . . . .
(With the worst central offensive blackened solder flux deposits colored over, to be able to see the foil paths below)
Ball Clock PCB.png

73's de Edd . . . . . .

I think that the person who invented autocorrect should burn in hello.



.
 
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Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
34
Joined
Oct 14, 2022
Messages
34

Sir @Iguanaman . . . . .​


Most humble apologies on the time offset delay . . . . of reply.

Looking at your soldering, I believe that we can now not worry about the possibility of a solder joint connectivity issue.
With concentration now being on two aspects . . .
1. The provision of a DC supply of ~1.5 VDC to your clocks timer portion.
2. The provision and adequacy of the ~4.5 VDC supply to run the motor that drives the ball pendulum arm, for its 1
turn cycle and then a resting.
(Would my guess-timation of a 5-10 second cycle be correct, with an ensuing 50-55 second resting time ? )

Now I have done a re-read back, to see if you gave the summation of the battery voltage of its series strung cells.
Not finding it, so can I expect 3 series "C" cells for 4.5 VDC with new cells installed .
THEN we would see the battery stacks negative terminal coming into the top corner of the PCB.
The battery + comes into the bottom corner

NOW hows about we concentrate on that clocks power supply and have you take a single C cell and connect two wires **********one to each end and run those wires directly to the RED CIRCLE and BLACK CIRCLE in the top left corner of my mark up.
That will give constant DC battery power to the clocks dedicated 1 minute timer portion.
From other owners comments, we might now expect 3-4 months of run time from that single "C" cell, until the inability to run on that
cells depleted voltage level.
If you then plug in the wall wart and use it as it has been used for 10 yrs, we will then be depending upon that DC supply for the gear train motor drive and its associated ball pendulum drop.
If you can repeatedly have success in making that mechanism cycle by placing a wire short across the YELLOW or parallel connected RED switch wires, that portion is not being at fault.

*********
HOWYOUDODAT?

I'll just bet that your soldering iron doesn't have enough THERMAL OOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMPPPPPTTTTTTHHHHH to be able solder onto those end caps, with the cells metallic mass siphoning away heat like an ice cube.
I even think that my 320W Weller gun would be taking a loooong warm up time.
An alternate . . . . . is to prepare the wires ends by forming one of each ends into concentrically decreasing spirals that then get pressed into the cell centers and initially taped down to hold in place and then cut multiple cardboard squares 1/2 the diameter of the cell ends to press against the centers, and then tightly winding tape or twine binding from end to end, to continually hold pressure on the end caps.
Then the loose wire ends get soldered to the PCB's top left corners marked up RED & BLACK circle solder blobs.
Then hook up and see if the main 1 minute clock runs . . . . . and if ever stopping . . . . then confirm that the "C" cell is still feeding its required 1.5 VDC.
I think that when you read 0.85 VDC on that supply line, was when the screw to bared copper foils was shorting and altering the regulated supply.
Since, that thus created misconnection was affecting the two FAR right side transistors which form a voltage regulator circuit to develop the 1.5 VDC from the main supply voltage.
I am including this MARK UP addition below , which I will be explaining in detail if so required later. The RED line path is the power flow to the motor driver transistor .
LUCKILY, when you jumper wired from your red circle , you just applied 4.5 VDC direct to the gear train motor and bypassed the main driver transistor. Then, as soon as the bottom, red wired, micro switch closed, it cycled on its own until getting back to its park position.
Normally, consulting the referencing below, the RED 4.5 supply line ( less the .7 volt drop of the series inserted 1N4007 steering diode ) takes a foil path up sweep to connect to the top lead of a 4.7K resistor which then has the resistors bottom lead routed downward to 3 hole pad which it shares with the RED and Yellow switch wires.
Then, the timer, in making a yellow switch closure takes the voltage and current reduced output of that 4.7K resistor to the left to the base of the motor driver transistor where its conduction then starts the gear train motor.

Now lets experiment and therewith, hope for monthly updates of . . . its still running !. . .
HOWEVER, if it stops and STILL has its 1.5 clock run voltage, I'm then fully suspect of that 1 RPM mechanism.

ITS MARK UP TYME . . . . . . . .
(With the worst central offensive blackened solder flux deposits colored over, to be able to see the foil paths below)
View attachment 56884

73's de Edd . . . . . .

I think that the person who invented autocorrect should burn in hello.
The voltage coming to the red and black clock input voltage is 1.7 with either the batteries or the wall wart.
I attached a battery directly to the clock wires (shown below) The clock is running and if I attach a wall wart also the arm does not rotate at the top of the minute. I tried bypassing the reed switch by jumping the yellow wires however it did not cause the arm to move. I can attach one side of the motor to the positive wall wart and get the motor to run that way. So no movement on the arm unless I directly power the motor.

20221110_172404.jpg



 
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73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
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Messages
3,463

Sir @Iguanaman . . . . .​


I wish that I could have had your last pic for referencing, earlier.
That holder seems to be for "D" sized cells, with 3 and then one on the end.
And is the silver mylar sticker stating 6 VDC @ 100 ma ?
I can see the barrel connector input plug and there being the possibility of a switching action at plug in presence.
But I am seeing no need, for switching as the full wall wart voltage is being sent to the clock with two transistors doing voltage regulation and reduction down to ~1.5 VDC power for the clocks 1 minute mechanics.
Then the wall warts full supply voltage is also being sent to the gear train motor thru a driver transistor . . . at a voltage loss of ~700 millivolts by the 1N4007 series diode .
That leaves that diodes function as being protection from the wrong polarity of voltage being applied due to a wrong polarity of wall wart being tried / used.

EVALUATIVE TEST . . .
Considering that the 1 minute timer is still running . . .FAITHFULLY . . .and not having ever stopped, to date, but that the gear train motor is just not being triggered at 00 minute time.

CAVEAT . . . . I think that once you mentioned advancing the minute timer manually . . . I would never do that again due to the fragility of the fine tooth gear that is fed by a cog gear driven by a one pulse per second micro solenoid. Just wait that minute out.

In looking at that March of 1986 manufacturing date of that Calrad wall wart, I'm expecting a multi tapped secondary winding with a slide switch that selects one of the marked voltage outputs.
Then, either a single diode or bridge rectifier to develop the dc voltage output, that then is accumulated in a filter capacitor . A minimum of 220 ufd would be expected for 200 ma and then that voltage is being routed to the 100/200 ma switch that is shunting an ~ 47 ohm resistor.
I think that you have left it in the 100 ma position for 10 yrs of no fail operation, so that means some power was being limited by the 47 ohm resistor.
NOW, switch that to the 200 ma position so that an extra bit of OOOOOMPH will be available.
Wait out the minute and then see if the gear train motor will start up now . . .at its prescribed 00.

Standing by . . . . . .
EatingPopcorn.jpg




73's de Edd . . . . .


The cold weather is now approaching . . . . therefore, you just might hear . . . . .
One snowman asking another, “Do you smell carrots?”

.
 
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Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
34
Joined
Oct 14, 2022
Messages
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Sir @Iguanaman . . . . .​


I wish that I could have had your last pic for referencing, earlier.
That holder seems to be for "D" sized cells, with 3 and then one on the end.
And is the silver mylar sticker stating 6 VDC @ 100 ma ?
I can see the barrel connector input plug and there being the possibility of a switching action at plug in presence.
But I am seeing no need, for switching as the full wall wart voltage is being sent to the clock with two transistors doing voltage regulation and reduction down to ~1.5 VDC power for the clocks 1 minute mechanics.
Then the wall warts full supply voltage is also being sent to the gear train motor thru a driver transistor . . . at a voltage loss of ~700 millivolts by the 1N4007 series diode .
That leaves that diodes function as being protection from the wrong polarity of voltage being applied due to a wrong polarity of wall wart being tried / used.

EVALUATIVE TEST . . .
Considering that the 1 minute timer is still running . . .FAITHFULLY . . .and not having ever stopped, to date, but that the gear train motor is just not being triggered at 00 minute time.

CAVEAT . . . . I think that once you mentioned advancing the minute timer manually . . . I would never do that again due to the fragility of the fine tooth gear that is fed by a cog gear driven by a one pulse per second micro solenoid. Just wait that minute out.

In looking at that March of 1986 manufacturing date of that Calrad wall wart, I'm expecting a multi tapped secondary winding with a slide switch that selects one of the marked voltage outputs.
Then, either a single diode or bridge rectifier to develop the dc voltage output, that then is accumulated in a filter capacitor . A minimum of 220 ufd would be expected for 200 ma and then that voltage is being routed to the 100/200 ma switch that is shunting an ~ 47 ohm resistor.
I think that you have left it in the 100 ma position for 10 yrs of no fail operation, so that means some power was being limited by the 47 ohm resistor.
NOW, switch that to the 200 ma position so that an extra bit of OOOOOMPH will be available.
Wait out the minute and then see if the gear train motor will start up now . . .at its prescribed 00.

Standing by . . . . . .
EatingPopcorn.jpg




73's de Edd . . . . .


The cold weather is now approaching . . . . therefore, you just might hear . . . . .
One snowman asking another, “Do you smell carrots?”

.
The batteries are "C" cell types. The wall wart only has 100 or 300 ma positions. I first tried switching to the 300 ma position but nothing happened. I then switched the voltage to "6" (which it was for years despite being more than 6 volts which I never knew before) and suddenly the clock started rotating at the top of the minute. That ran for about 20 minutes and now no longer rotates again.
 

Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
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I ordered the 1RPM 120v motor and plan to replace it this week. I was really hoping I could get the PCB working correctly but that seems to be unlikely. Thanks for all the assistance getting to this point!
 

73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
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Sir Iguanaman . . . .

I had made some queries via the Conversation / Private Message boards of the forum but got no comeback from you.
You Say . . .
The batteries are "C" cell types.
With no side perspective referencing, they looked as big as D cells to my eye..
Even with C cells they have a fierce one shot capability of 5 amp peak power . SO . . . that should easily power that clocks low power drive requirement. While the gear train motor is only pulling . . . . . probably around 100-200 ma.
Also, your unit has only 2 wires from the battery holder to the board on the unit and is thereby using full power to drive the gear train motor, while using the Green and Blue Dot marked up transistors to regulate that higher voltage on down to ~ 1.5 VDC for your clocks 1 minute timer.


The wall wart only has 100 or 300 ma positions. I first tried switching to the 300 ma position but nothing happened. I then switched the voltage to "6" (which it was for years despite being more than 6 volts which I never knew before) and suddenly the clock started rotating at the top of the minute. That ran for about 20 minutes and now no longer rotates again.

What I initially suspicioned, considering the low voltage used and the meager demands made upon its semiconductors, the weak component would seem to be the 30 year old wall wart and its built in internal electrolytic storage capacitor.
That was the one item that was subject to the heat coming from the power transformer that was plugged into AC power 24 hrs per day for

~ 10 years and the heat had dried out the internal moist electrolyte and and accompanying capability of pure DC power level output.
THEN it finally met that output voltages critical threshold, where the loading of the gear train motor, caused a drop of the regulated supply to the clock timer and . . . . . . . it stopped.
Had that been the case all that was necessary was to circumvent by adding a 1000-2000 ufd 16V new E cap at the PC power input to the PCB corners.
PLUS it would not be pressed against a warm transformers windings, over there.

What I am REALLY-REALLY interested about in that situation, is if the clock timer supply voltage, on the red and black wires that feed it are STILL being at at ~ 1.5 VDC voltage when it is NOT running ?
If so . . . . that suggests its internally kaput.


So you will be up against adapting the new 1 min timer into the reed relay + timer dial mechanatronics.
With the new motor run by 120 V 60~AC and still use the old adapter and its supply DC voltage, for the gear train motor.
 

Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
34
Joined
Oct 14, 2022
Messages
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Sir Iguanaman . . . .

I had made some queries via the Conversation / Private Message boards of the forum but got no comeback from you.
You Say . . .
The batteries are "C" cell types.
With no side perspective referencing, they looked as big as D cells to my eye..
Even with C cells they have a fierce one shot capability of 5 amp peak power . SO . . . that should easily power that clocks low power drive requirement. While the gear train motor is only pulling . . . . . probably around 100-200 ma.
Also, your unit has only 2 wires from the battery holder to the board on the unit and is thereby using full power to drive the gear train motor, while using the Green and Blue Dot marked up transistors to regulate that higher voltage on down to ~ 1.5 VDC for your clocks 1 minute timer.


The wall wart only has 100 or 300 ma positions. I first tried switching to the 300 ma position but nothing happened. I then switched the voltage to "6" (which it was for years despite being more than 6 volts which I never knew before) and suddenly the clock started rotating at the top of the minute. That ran for about 20 minutes and now no longer rotates again.

What I initially suspicioned, considering the low voltage used and the meager demands made upon its semiconductors, the weak component would seem to be the 30 year old wall wart and its built in internal electrolytic storage capacitor.
That was the one item that was subject to the heat coming from the power transformer that was plugged into AC power 24 hrs per day for

~ 10 years and the heat had dried out the internal moist electrolyte and and accompanying capability of pure DC power level output.
THEN it finally met that output voltages critical threshold, where the loading of the gear train motor, caused a drop of the regulated supply to the clock timer and . . . . . . . it stopped.
Had that been the case all that was necessary was to circumvent by adding a 1000-2000 ufd 16V new E cap at the PC power input to the PCB corners.
PLUS it would not be pressed against a warm transformers windings, over there.

What I am REALLY-REALLY interested about in that situation, is if the clock timer supply voltage, on the red and black wires that feed it are STILL being at at ~ 1.5 VDC voltage when it is NOT running ?
If so . . . . that suggests its internally kaput.


So you will be up against adapting the new 1 min timer into the reed relay + timer dial mechanatronics.
With the new motor run by 120 V 60~AC and still use the old adapter and its supply DC voltage, for the gear train motor.

I'm sorry I thought I replied to the DMs but I didn't. The batteries are "C" cells. The clock (powered by the battery only) is at 1.5 volts. It is also 1.5 when I plug in the adapter OR put in the batteries.

I purchased a 1 RPM motor (120v) which I intend to attach directly to the arm itself and bypass all the other electronics. This is how the original wooden version functions. I was hoping there might be an easy resolution to the PCB board (maybe replace the caps) but it seems like there are too many points of potential failure.
 

Iguanaman

Oct 14, 2022
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Just as a followup. I finally managed to replace the electronics with a 1RPM motor. I created and 3D printed some brackets to hold the motor in place. I had to remove all the previous electronics and support posts to install it. Now it is back to functioning as a clock and keeping time.
 

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73's de Edd

Aug 21, 2015
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Good show ! glad it is finally " dropping its balls " again.
BTW did you always find the 1.5 VDC supply present on the old clock timer mechanism . . . . if being so. the old unit must have just died a slow mechanical death, as those units 1 second stepping gearing SURELY gets a lot repetitions in its use . ( 10 yrs now ? )
Those initial two plastic plastic gears just might burr up and lock down on some of its teeth.
If that was your old units situation , then all was lost with it.

1674450479381.png
 
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