Author Topic: VP2 anemometer cups sticking  (Read 6918 times)

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Offline NorthNJwx

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #25 on: October 11, 2016, 06:45:44 PM »
I just went through and episode of the anemometer cups "sticking".  The actions was that the cups would start spinning and a little while later they would abruptly stop.  I tinkered with it some and ended up removing the wind cups and the vane and spraying some JIF electrical contact cleaner onto the shafts.  Re-installed the cups and vane and so far things have been good.  I really don't know if the contact cleaner helped or not, but something did.  I'm able to get to my anemometer ok, though, so I'm able to tinker with it.  I would call one of your local DISH or DirectTV installers and see if they work on antennaes, too.  Then tell them it's not "exactly* and antenna, that' sit's actually smaller.  I have to believe someone would be willing to help you with it....for a price, of course.

Best wishes on your repair/replacement.
Ed

That's excellent advice -- thank you!  I figure I'll try that first.  If I don't have any luck there, my fallback options would be to look for a roofer or a handyman.  I'm a bit worried about what the price will end up being, but I'll find a way to make it work.

Yesterday, I did try hitting the cups with 1) spray from a hose nozzle and 2) a telescoping cleaning pole, both from safe locations well below the anemometer.  Like others in this thread, I managed to move the cups -- and then they seized up again.  Interestingly enough, the cups were seizing up yesterday in winds > 10 mph and are not seizing up today in winds that were briefly < 3-4 mph.  I don't think it has anything to do with my feeble DIY efforts, but it would be nice to have good wind data at least intermittently until I can replace the unit.
« Last Edit: October 11, 2016, 06:47:37 PM by NorthNJwx »

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #26 on: October 11, 2016, 10:29:23 PM »
I would definitely take a shot at lubing it with some non-oily lubricant.  The contact cleaner I knew wouldn't leave an oily residue but figured it would maybe flush something out and knock some oxidation off.  I have no idea if it helped or not.  I expected to see some spiderwebs or maybe some dead ladybugs or some other critter between the hubs of the cup and vane pieces and the wind sensor housing...but did not see anything.  Others, though, have found spiders to have set up housekeeping among the vane or cup hardware and after cleaning the web out their anemometer worked fine.

Best wishes on your repair, maybe it'll just be a bug or spiderweb.  Think positive!!!  :-)
Ed

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Offline NorthNJwx

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #27 on: October 14, 2016, 04:20:48 PM »
I would definitely take a shot at lubing it with some non-oily lubricant.  The contact cleaner I knew wouldn't leave an oily residue but figured it would maybe flush something out and knock some oxidation off.  I have no idea if it helped or not.  I expected to see some spiderwebs or maybe some dead ladybugs or some other critter between the hubs of the cup and vane pieces and the wind sensor housing...but did not see anything.  Others, though, have found spiders to have set up housekeeping among the vane or cup hardware and after cleaning the web out their anemometer worked fine.

Best wishes on your repair, maybe it'll just be a bug or spiderweb.  Think positive!!!  :-)
Ed

Definitely all things I'll try once I hire someone to take it down.  I'll have to replace it (the new anemometer is on its way now), just because I think the risk of trying to repair it and failing is too high -- whereas a new anemometer is much more likely to work without issue right away.  But I'll keep the old (current) anemometer after taking it down/cleaning it and will see if I can repurpose it.

Speaking of my current anemometer, it has been working very well since Monday night.  There was a period Wednesday night/yesterday morning during which it was "stuck" at calm for hours on end, but that was during an unusually long period of very light/legitimately calm winds.  I'm going to keep monitoring it and will update this thread with my results, as even if I do replace it sooner than later, it still won't be done until at least a couple of weeks from now.  If I find that it never sticks in winds averaging > 10 mph and only does so rarely in winds 5-10 mph, I may consider delaying replacement indefinitely.  My average wind speed at the anemometer site during the Fall and Winter months has generally been 11-12 mph since I've had the station and gales start occurring with some frequency here at this time of year, so as long as the "sticking" problem is only really a problem under 5 mph and maybe occasionally at 5-10 mph -- and so long as it doesn't get much worse than it has -- I may keep the current unit in place.

Offline Intheswamp

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #28 on: October 14, 2016, 11:57:19 PM »
That sounds like a plan to me.  Mine still seems to be working fine.  You don't have to be in a rush, go at your own pace.

Best wishes,
Ed

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Offline jimmy1913

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #29 on: October 23, 2016, 07:47:46 PM »
Had the same thing happen!Two year old VP2 started anemometer cups started sticking as of yesterday any thing under 6 mph they would not turn at all,this morning I took it down and took the cups off and sprayed the crap out of it with silicone spray then turn the spindle until it turned smoothly.Put it back up at 27' and it works like new!!

Offline mike88ag

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #30 on: November 06, 2016, 09:31:40 AM »
I recently began experiencing this issue and tried cleaning the bearing with a few sprays from a can of mass air flow sensor cleaner I had in the garage. It worked great for several days but then started sticking again. I called Davis to have a new one sent out under their repair program, but instead they told me that they now sell replacement bearings. The price is a bit steep ($20 plus $10 shipping), but it's cheaper than a replacement anemometer. The Davis part number is 7345.999.

Offline jimmy1913

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #31 on: November 06, 2016, 03:54:21 PM »
Two + weeks still every thing is find no sticking at all!! It has been two months now still no sticking after spraying the bearings with WD-40 silicon spray this has been a very easy fix!!
« Last Edit: December 29, 2016, 07:48:35 PM by jimmy1913 »

Offline dj1111s

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #32 on: December 28, 2016, 02:31:12 PM »
I just noticed my VP2 cups are sticking as well today.  I looked up briefly and saw the wind vane moving to the wind direction but the cups were  not spinning yet my old metal windmill in the back yard was spinning away.  Then the cups would start spinning but come to hard stops between gusts.  Did a search and found this thread.  While I have no fear of going up on the roof to check on it, I first have to take down the 2 TV antennas and a pre amp and all the wiring before I can take down the 10' pole the anemometer sits on top of.  It's a bit of a process.  I have noticed for some time now that my wind speed readings on CWOP are always a lot lower than the analysis values so I wonder if it's been sticky for a while. 

Too windy to go up there today but at least all the snow is melted off after some recent warm weather and rain.  I'll try to get to it before I go back to work Jan 3rd.
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Offline Intheswamp

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #33 on: December 29, 2016, 08:48:05 AM »
Be careful up there, sounds like a bit of work ahead.

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Offline dj1111s

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #34 on: January 01, 2017, 11:37:11 PM »
Thanks for the concerns "Intheswamp".

Well the operation was a success.  Turns out I didnít have to take down the antennas.  My 17í adjustable multi position aluminum ladder placed on my roof allowed me to reach the anemometer.  But just barely.  It was a bit of a stretch, and probably a little dangerous.  Never underestimate the need to be extremely careful on projects like this.

Once I was safely on the ground and in the garage, I removed the cups from the shaft and found it would turn but kinda rough.  It definitely did not spin very free.  The first thing I did was run a copious amount of contact cleaner through the bearings.  It freed it up a bit but it still sounded crunchy.  I then took the thing apart and removed the shaft with the little square magnet thingy on it.  It was then I found rust on the shaft where it contacted the lower bearing.  Use a little naval jelly to dissolve the rust and it came real clean.  Does not look like the shaft was damaged.  Seems like the rust may have come from the bearing and transferred to the shaft.  I used WD40 to help clean the rust out of the lower bearing.  Did that several times while spinning the bearing until the solvent ran clear on a rag.  Then dried it all with some compressed air.

Before assembling it, I added a drop of TriFlo lube with Teflon to each bearing, wiping off any excess.  I know itís not dry lube but I swear by it with all the places I use it one my bikes and is my favorite lube for tight spaces like these tiny bearings.  The thing now spins free and easy with no noticeable ďcrunchinessĒ.  It was spinning just fine now at the light 1, 2 to 3 mile per hour winds this afternoon.  Iíll have to keep an I on it to see how long this repair lasts.  Iím sure the rust will return eventually like it always does once it gets started.
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Offline W3DRM

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #35 on: January 01, 2017, 11:48:25 PM »
Congratulations on the safe repair.  =D&gt;  Perhaps you might consider making it part of an annual or semi-annual maintenance activity for your station.
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Offline dj1111s

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #36 on: January 02, 2017, 12:00:23 AM »
Congratulations on the safe repair.  =D&gt;  Perhaps you might consider making it part of an annual or semi-annual maintenance activity for your station.

Thanks.  Yes I thought of that.  Like on a calm warm fall weekend before winter starts.  And now that I know what to look for it should be a quick repair.
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Offline piconut

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #37 on: January 02, 2017, 10:23:00 AM »
... Iíll have to keep an I on it to see how long this repair lasts.  Iím sure the rust will return eventually like it always does once it gets started.


It may last longer than you think!  I did basically the same thing as you did (clean and lube) and mine has been spinning freely since June of 2016.  Happy New Year and good luck on yours!
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Offline Intheswamp

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #38 on: January 02, 2017, 11:44:17 AM »
Congratulations on a safe and successful repair!!!  Hopefully it will be a long-lived one!!!

And eveybody...be careful up on those ladders!!!  Our hobby is fun but not worth bodily injury or worse. 

Be careful.
Be safe.

Oh...and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!   ;)
Ed

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Offline gsfarm

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #39 on: February 12, 2017, 05:17:48 PM »
My VP2 anemometer just started sticking in January after being in service for 9 months. Installed it in march 2016 (brand new VP2). Called Davis, the parts are about $60 shipped to Canada so I ordered what I needed, just the bearing/shaft assembly that bolts onto the bottom og the wind direction/anemometer arm. Appreciate the picture at the beginning of this thread regarding the Phillips head screw required to do the R+R.

Since my anemometer is at the top of a tower (wooded area, needs to be above tree height) knowing what screwdriver to bring along is exceedingly helpful. One question though; is there a nut on the top of the assembly that the screw tightens into, or does it just deadhead into the metallic mast? I am hoping I can just remove the wind cups, remove and install the new assembly, and re-install the wind-cup rotor without bringing the whole thing down to the ground, and while being careful in case there is a nut on top I could lose...!

I am really disappointed in this bearing/shaft design, in that: A) it failed so soon, and B) wasn't covered under warranty. The sales person at Davis I talked to reassured me that the replacement was an "update" to the original and it should last much longer... (I certainly hope so). My original VP weather station that is now partially retired and has the original wind speed/direction sensor on it, still works after 12-13 years of service, hence why I went with another Davis.

Offline piconut

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #40 on: February 12, 2017, 07:42:34 PM »
If I was in your shoes, I'd take some spray lubricant like silicone spray and some compressed air in a can and use the air to free any particulate matter and then shoot some lube in there before I tried disassembling the whole thing in the air, on a ladder, trying not to drop parts.  I took mine down, blew air through it and lubed it and it has been fine for almost a year now (and I still have a new set of bearings that I mistakenly ordered in case they ever stick up so much that they need to be replaced).  Either that, or bring the whole thing down to do the full repair because I don't think you'll be able to replace the bearings while on the ladder.  Just my $0.02. J
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Offline gsfarm

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #41 on: February 13, 2017, 12:19:34 AM »
No ladder required. Just a 60' climb to the top of the tower. Actually quite stable up there with the proper safety equipment. That being said, I'm only climbing it once if possible to replace the bearing. If that doesn't go well then the whole anemometer assembly and cable comes down for the repair. Since I have the part here already it will be switched out and the old one can be a spare if it can be repaired. Temps are around 0C during the day which is fine, but I need the wind to be below 20kph before I go up. Wind has been in the 30's last few days and looks like 50's for the next few days so not sure when I can do the repairs.
Need some of that south Texas weather up here! :)

Offline piconut

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #42 on: February 13, 2017, 01:01:23 AM »
No ladder required. Just a 60' climb to the top of the tower. Actually quite stable up there with the proper safety equipment. That being said, I'm only climbing it once if possible to replace the bearing. If that doesn't go well then the whole anemometer assembly and cable comes down for the repair. Since I have the part here already it will be switched out and the old one can be a spare if it can be repaired. Temps are around 0C during the day which is fine, but I need the wind to be below 20kph before I go up. Wind has been in the 30's last few days and looks like 50's for the next few days so not sure when I can do the repairs.
Need some of that south Texas weather up here! :)


Sounds like a plan.  Let us know how things work out!
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Offline gsfarm

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #43 on: February 16, 2017, 07:42:11 PM »
Got home in time this evening before the sun set, about 0C and 20kph wind maybe a bit less... managed to climb up and work on the anemometer. Putting the new part in I lost the screw that holds it to the mast and weathervane, and didn't bring the right sized screw with me up the tower :(

It's lost somewhere in 4' or so snow at the bottom of the tower so no hope of finding it. Think I have a couple screws that might fit so I'll have to go up again to finish the job. It's too dark now and forcast is for 40kph winds again tomorrow so again I wait...

I checked the old part just now and can't find any evidence of corrosion. The lower bearing seems to be ceased, looks like the shaft was turning inside the inner race. The top bearing is fine, nice and smooth. Must have been a defective bearing. Not much wear on the shaft since it was so stiff in the bearing race it just didn't turn much. I might be able to press out the original bearings and find replacments for them...

Just wondering if anyone would know the exact spacs for the screw that holds the anemometer together?

-G.

Offline johnd

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #44 on: February 17, 2017, 04:15:00 AM »
Just have a look at p2 of the ISS manuak - all the parts are itemised there.

I think you probably mean the #4 x 1-1/8" machine screw but can't be sure.
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Offline gsfarm

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #45 on: February 17, 2017, 08:09:00 AM »
PP2 of the ISS manual shows the parts required for assembly, and the #4 machine screw is for mounting the anemometer mast to the base as seen at the top of PP3. If you look at the bottom of PP3 you see the anemometer (head) as it comes from the factory (original VP/VP2 design). The screw I need fastens the anemometer head to the mast, not really shown in this diagram, but would likely be seen if the picture was of the updated anemometer head. I suspect it is a 1/2" to 3/4" self tapping sheet metal type screw.
In my junQue drawer I found several screws that I am sure one will work... will have to take them up on the tower this am (not as windy out as previously forcast) and use one of them to re-attach the anemometer.
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Offline gsfarm

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #46 on: February 17, 2017, 11:35:55 AM »
Replaced the bearing housing this am. Climbed down and checked... now no wind speed indication. Just sits at 0 with 20kmh wind and the wind cups are spinning quietly away. Wiring was all good, made sure the screw didn't damage the wiring or anything like that. Maybe the mercury switch was damaged somehow during the R+R operation? Waiting for a response from Davis. Thinking I'm going to have to order the whole anemometer assembly now...
:(

edit:
Climbed up again and found the bearing/shaft assembly had not "clicked" all the way into the wind direction housing, and the magnet was a bit too far from the mercury switch to register. Loostened the screw a bit and gave it a good squeeze that snapped it in the rest of the way and now it's working! :)
Beautiful day here +6C light winds, nice for tower work! :)
« Last Edit: February 17, 2017, 03:55:20 PM by gsfarm »

Offline Intheswamp

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #47 on: February 19, 2017, 08:54:02 AM »
Ok, I'm re-visiting my old anemometer problems...basically trying to figure out if I still have a problem or not.

I visited my CWOP page this morning and in checking the anemometer readings they are showing what seems to me a pretty good difference from the "analyzed" data.  A good 45+degrees discrepancy in the wind direction (can fix easily, if I need to).  But what concerns me is the wind speed...my wind speed reading shows to be only about 1/3rd of that of the "analyzed" data.  I'm wondering if this is in fact, what is happening.  My anemometer was sticking several months back, but I took it down and sprayed it with electronic contact cleaner and it went to working/spinning good.  I'm now wondering if it really is spinning as freely as I think it is.  I know that the CWOP "quality" data can be questionable at times but I'm wondering, considering the prior problem with the anemometer sticking if this wind speed difference is pointing a problem out for me.  Thoughts????  Thanks, Ed


« Last Edit: February 20, 2017, 11:45:19 PM by Intheswamp »

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Offline piconut

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #48 on: February 19, 2017, 11:52:40 AM »
Ditto here but it is hard to read the last 7 days graph in my instance.  I know that my anemometer, while on the top of my roof, is still shielded by some trees around the property so that may account for the difference.


 

You can see the height of the surrounding tree from my weather cams which are mounted about 5 feet below the anemometer, here:





« Last Edit: February 19, 2017, 11:58:21 AM by piconut »
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Offline Intheswamp

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Re: VP2 anemometer cups sticking
« Reply #49 on: February 19, 2017, 09:06:33 PM »
Cool, those charts are "live"...they've updated.

I'm not sure what to do regarding the speed.  I think I'll monitor the wind for a few days and see how it corresponds with the CWOP chart...it looks like the 1-day chart has narrowed the difference, but still around 30-degrees separation.

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