Author Topic: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years  (Read 287 times)

Alan Hale

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got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years 

glort

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2020, 03:43:35 AM »

Looks a nice unit. 50 years is a long time to be sitting round. Well done on restoring a piece of history that you have obviously done a fantastic job with.  Hope you can do a video of it running.

Is the SOM working on it?

Alan Hale

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2020, 07:47:23 PM »
What is a SO M?

Alan Hale

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2020, 07:51:50 PM »
Is it possible to spin the genny with 24 v. battery?  will it turn with 12v.? I want to start it again with the genny

glort

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2020, 11:04:42 PM »

SOM is Start O matic.

The engine will start when it senses a load is turned on like a light bulb. Given the Generator has a starter motor in it, I'd say that's what you have.  Often these need some refurbishment when they are that old but worth while doing.

I believe they can be 12 or 24V on the starter. Check the nameplate.

mike90045

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2020, 11:05:01 PM »
SOM:
 Start O Matic
   when you turn on a light in the house, the generator starts itself up, and turns off when you turn the lights off.

veggie

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2020, 11:59:47 PM »

Always wondered ... how does the system know that a light was turned on?
And how does it know when no power is being used so that it can shut down.?

Can this logic be replicated with a modern starter motor and more modern electronics and/or an arduino ???
- 6/1 GM90 Listeroid - Delco 33si Alternator
- Changfa R175 - Lease/Neville Alternator
- Kubota Z482 - 4kw
- JiangDong R165 Air cooled - 2 kw

mike90045

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2020, 07:41:13 AM »
Turning any load on, pulls power through a relay, which initiates an pre-timed starting sequence, same relay shuts it down. All done with mech relays and time delays

glort

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2020, 10:23:46 AM »

Can this logic be replicated with a modern starter motor and more modern electronics and/or an arduino ???

Depends on the load.

The SOM works by putting a small sensing current down the line from the batteries.  That's fine for something like a Light or a resistive load but things like a modern TV that have step up transformers and are constantly pulling an amount of Current in stand by operation, in many cases wouldn't stand it.  LED lights that either work at low Current or low voltage through a transformer, often a pretty crappy switch mode type would not work it either. You might also have a problem with something like your Fridge that every time you open the door the light comes on and the Genny fires although newer units have electronic control boards so that would need constant powering at full voltage.

It could certainly be done with a simple load like an incandescent  light just though a voltage comparator circuit and probably a few other ways, even a Moffett would switch at low enough levels quite easily but more modern things I can't really think of a way of doing off my head right now although where there is a will there is always a way.
Might be possible to run an inverter to keep the circuit live and then the voltage drop kicks in the Generator which runs with the inverter ( would need to be transformer Type which would suck some power even in standby) or a switchmode type like a UPS.

The best way I would think is to have everything running off an inverter and batteries and just monitor the battery bank voltage.
When it drops to threshold level the engine starts and recharges it.  I have some little China boards sitting in front of me now that do that. cost $8 a piece.  Voltage drops, Relay engages starter controlled by readily available off the shelf Governors that will look at RPM to engage and disengage the starter and control the fuel rack  for start, run speed and shut down.

AdeV

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2020, 12:08:41 PM »
It's worth remembering that the Start-o-matics were actually called "lighting plant". Back in the 1930s, when they were designed, there were very few electrical devices - desk fans, lightbulbs and radiant heaters being the main ones I can think of, maybe toasters. All of these, when switched on, could consume enough DC current to trigger the generator. Try that with a smartphone charger!

Even as more modern equipment came along - TVs, wireless sets, phonographs etc. - these all had basic transformers & actual on/off switches, which meant they would consume some DC power to trigger the generator, and when switched off would consume nothing.

IMHO the best way to recreate a "SOM" setup now would be with a battery bank and sufficient inverter(s) to power your load requirements. Then sense the voltage on the batteries, and trigger the generator when that drops below a threshold; and switch off when it rises above a different threshold. As Lithium batteries get cheaper and more prevalent, this will IMHO become a fairly normal thing to do. Add in solar panels, micro hydro, a wind turbine, etc., and you could save yourself a few pennies on the old electrickery bill... whether it'd ever pay for itself, is another matter altogether. Although frankly, I'd do it just for the fun of it...
Cheers!
Ade.
--------------
1x Lister CS Start-o-Matic (complete, runs)
0x Lister JP4 :( - Sold to go in a canal boat.

glort

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2020, 01:34:47 PM »

 All of these, when switched on, could consume enough DC current to trigger the generator. Try that with a smartphone charger!

Actually the DC wouldn't harm a smart phone charger. may not consume enough power to switch one but then again would you really want to run a Hulking great generator to charge a Phone?  :0)

It is the DC that would upset a lot of things but by the same token, a lot of things with transformers will Run on DC.  To have them basicaly in a brown out situation though would be another thing.  As you point out, in the old days things were on or off. We all know and have heard of the idea of switching things off at the power point because of parasitic drain of these plug pack and electronic appliances that are never really off, just in standby.
That's where a large amount of the problem would be.

Quote
IMHO the best way to recreate a "SOM" setup now would be with a battery bank and sufficient inverter(s) to power your load requirements. Then sense the voltage on the batteries, and trigger the generator when that drops below a threshold; and switch off when it rises above a different threshold.

 I have a device that does exactly that. Couple of them actually.
They are a voltage dependant relay.  I have one on my hot water system.  When the solar pushes the the mains voltage up to a programmed level which indicates sufficient power, the relay turns on the hot water. When the power  drops or can be set to work in reverse, it switches off.  They will run on AC or DC and are mains voltage rated.

The DC boards I have are 2-60V and can switch 10 A on their own. More than enough to switch a larger contactor if needed.  If you wanted to switch Higher voltage DC, not a problem, just make a simple voltage divider  and add that in front of the board and calibrate accordingly.


 
Quote
As Lithium batteries get cheaper and more prevalent, this will IMHO become a fairly normal thing to do. Add in solar panels, micro hydro, a wind turbine, etc., and you could save yourself a few pennies on the old electrickery bill... whether it'd ever pay for itself, is another matter altogether. Although frankly, I'd do it just for the fun of it...

If you have grid power, unless in the most unique of circumstances, batteries are a very long way off being able to allow you to save money over their lifetime.  Solar panels, Different story but the second you go to batteries, You are Costing yourself money not saving it.

Off grid is a different matter.  It's nothing for power cos to want $50K here to connect power and we aren't necessarily talking end of the earth scenarios either. There are a lot of people coming to the fore having bought blocks for retirement in fairly well  built up areas but because connecting them would exceed the transformer allowance in the street, the power extorters want that customer to pay for an upgrade possibly the whole street would share.

I was talking to a real power company man a couple of months back at my fathers place in the country. He was saying that if they have to run a new line more than 6 Pole spans, it's cheaper for them to set the property owner up with a solar system and batteries and just charge them a flat monthly fee.

The thought with off grid here now is go big on the cheap panels and small on the batteries.  You only need enough power to get you through the night at a reasonable DOD and then have plenty of panels to charge the batteries up in the morning and carry the heavier loads such as washing machine, dishwashers, clothes dryers etc.

In this scenario, the battery monitoring SOM setup would be perfect.  Incorporate a timer so there is say a 10 min delay before it kicks in or a minimum voltage and you would be set. Perfect for those overcast days or even if you have some heavy load you must run at night.

veggie

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2020, 02:14:36 AM »

Glort
" I have a device that does exactly that. Couple of them actually.
They are a voltage dependant relay.  I have one on my hot water system.  When the solar pushes the the mains voltage up to a programmed level which indicates sufficient power, the relay turns on the hot water. When the power  drops or can be set to work in reverse, it switches off.  They will run on AC or DC and are mains voltage rated."


Interesting device, do you have a picture or maybe an ebay link.
Rigging a generator to fire up on low battery voltage would be a nice feature.
I realize that many inverters have this feature, but it would be nice to have a separate device for project use.


- 6/1 GM90 Listeroid - Delco 33si Alternator
- Changfa R175 - Lease/Neville Alternator
- Kubota Z482 - 4kw
- JiangDong R165 Air cooled - 2 kw

glort

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2020, 09:45:00 AM »

Hi Gary,

This is the devices I have:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32737039338.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.8.cca3844nMim7d&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_3_10065_10344_10068_10130_10342_10547_10343_10340_10548_10341_10084_10617_10616_10083_10618_10615_10307_10131_5920011_10132_10133_10313_10059_10534_100031_10103_441_10624_442_10623_10622_10621_10620_10142,searchweb201603_25,ppcSwitch_5&algo_expid=742fd454-5534-41ac-afd2-006e6b97276e-1&algo_pvid=742fd454-5534-41ac-afd2-006e6b97276e&priceBeautifyAB=1

50-300V Ac or DC.  You can set Hysteresis as well. You'd have to watch the current you switched with them especially with DC as they are not that high rated, only 6A but I am using mine on a PWM controller to limit the AC power anyway so I get a lower heat input for a longer time which allows the thing to work better with the solar as it doesn't pull the voltage down by dropping the whole load.  For higher loads I use the monitor to just Drive a heavier DPDT relay.

I forget your battery bank voltage but there are also other little boards that do up to 60V.  They monitor the battery voltage and then at the preset Voltages turn a relay on and off. They are designed to control mains battery chargers but again the relays will work with ac or DC the latter which one would be far better off switching with DPDT relays on both poles or a MOSFET to eliminate arcing depending on the current.

if this doesn't suit let me know and I'll dig up a link to the other one and if you need a timer or something to check operation.  Few different ways you could monitor the engine to control the start and run signal.  These little boards now make things so easy. You can link them together and do so much. I was learning arduino but by the time you learn it and figure out the code and all that, easier for me to just wire the boards up and so much simpler. May not be quite as elegant but put them in a jiffy box with some switches and meters and who knows what's in there!  :0)

veggie

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2020, 03:25:30 PM »


Glort, thanks !

Oh, and they are DIN rail mount too! Excellent
- 6/1 GM90 Listeroid - Delco 33si Alternator
- Changfa R175 - Lease/Neville Alternator
- Kubota Z482 - 4kw
- JiangDong R165 Air cooled - 2 kw

glort

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Re: Got my Lister running for the first time in over 50 years
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2020, 12:45:40 AM »

I have found them to be Reliable and versatile units.
The DIN rail is handy. One thing I find is a difficulty with a lot of the little Circuit boards is actually mounting/ enclosing them especially when they have screens and buttons.  I scan the things and do a printout which gives me a template for buttons and openings but often Relays sit up pretty proud which means they have to come up above the face of the box in order to reach the buttons. Terminal blocks are often the same way which is a bit stupid as you are exposing often high voltage wires.

These things being all enclosed and on a mounting block for the wiring are a far superiour design. I bought a meter of DIN rail the other week for $6.  Can mount a lot of components on that much.

I was using one of these up until a month back to switch a fan heater in the house. Solar came up, heater kicked in.  You can set them any way for high or low voltage. I only recently saw they work on DC as well which is a Bonus as high Voltage  Anything in DC is hard and expensive to find. Most of the Cheap stuff stops at 100V.
You don't have to use these things to switch anything even though they can, I just get them to Drive a Relay as I have a heap of them in the box and they are like $2.50 ea so if I cook one, I'm hardly concerned.

I put another 6.2 Kw of solar on the other week and did over 80 Kwh yesterday and it was slightly hazy.  I don't need these things for controlling solar any more but I'm sure they will come in handy for some other experimentation down the track.

I might look at modifying one for a direct solar water heater controller. This will have to switch a Capacitor bank pretty rapidly  so I'll take out the mechanical relay and Put in a Mosfet which I can mount externally on a heat sink and just need a low current wire to the gate to switch it.

Quite amazing the components you can get now and what you can do with them.