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Vibrator (chopper) max current? #1262020 Mon Apr 09 2018 10:34 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 1,600
B
beltfed Online OP
Shop Shark
Anyone happen to know what the maximum current is for the vibrator, or as I call it a chopper, in the front end of tube radios? It’s been awhile since I messed with one. I plan to build a converter the old school way from spare parts and duct tape. Thanks


Six volt guy living in a twelve volt world
Re: Vibrator (chopper) max current? [Re: beltfed] #1262031 Mon Apr 09 2018 11:46 PM
Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 28,447
tclederman Offline
Boltergeist


Tim
1954Advance-Design.com
1954 3106 Carryall Suburban - part of the family for 48 years
1954 3104 5-window pickup w/Hydra-Matic - part of the family for 14 years
Z-series (54/55) GMC 350 (2-ton) COE - now part of Dave's family
- If you have to stomp on your foot-pedal starter, either you, or your starter, or your engine, has a problem.
- The 216 and early 235 engine are not "splash oilers" - this is a splash oiler.
Re: Vibrator (chopper) max current? [Re: beltfed] #1276288 Tue Aug 14 2018 11:43 PM
Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 246
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2ManyTrucks Offline
Shop Shark
hi,
I don't have any datasheets for those vibrators, but here is my 2 cent reasoning...

In one of my trucks (50 1 ton) the factory radio is using an original type vibrator, likely an Aerovox A-100 or Cornell-Dublier C-00 or Radiart 5300, i forget which, but those should be interchangeable parts.
The radio draws about 4 - 5 amps at 6.3V, about 1.6 of those amps is going into tube heaters, that leaves about 2.4 - 3.4 amps into the vibrator.
The vibrator was a common failure mode in the radio, it could be a little as months to needing a new one, but usually measured in a few years.
If you want your design to last similar to the radio service life of the 1950s i would stick to the conservative limit of 2-3 amps through the vibrator (4-5 amps at start up for 30 seconds while tubes warm up is fine).

But... if your design is easy to get to (for replacement purposes) and you put a big heat sink or fan on it you could probably push it to 2x or 3x from what my radio gets out of them.
My immediate concern would be self heating under load, if you want to push your luck, put a temperature probe on it and make sure you are comfortable with the results.
-s


1430s, 1420, 9430
-2MT
Re: Vibrator (chopper) max current? [Re: beltfed] #1276320 Wed Aug 15 2018 02:58 AM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 18,997
H
Hotrod Lincoln Offline
Boltergeist
We used to open up the sealed can on a vibrator and dress up the points when they got funky and the thing quit buzzing. That's probably the limiting factor- - - -whatever current the points can handle without burning. They're probably not as rugged as distributor points, as I remember them being about half the size of ignition points, and ignition points get toasty at about 5 amps. I'd guesstimate a vibrator might handle 2 1/2 - 3 amps maximum, probably less if you want to have long term survival. A vibrator's original purpose was to create a DC square wave which could be transformed like AC up to a much higher voltage for use with vacuum tubes. That process didn't involve much current across the points.
Jerry


The murder victim was drowned in a bathtub full of Rice Krispies and milk.
The coroner blamed the crime on a cereal killer!

Cringe and wail in fear, Eloi- - - - -we Morlocks are on the hunt!

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