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Cleaning 3PH motor

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  • Cleaning 3PH motor

    My new to me mill is single phase, but I've got the 3 PH motor that originally came on it. Today while looking over the motor with intentions of cleaning it up, I noticed that it is filthy inside and out. I would like to tear it down and give it a good cleaning but don't want to risk damaging the windings. Is there a solvent or degreaser that can be safely used to clean the motors internals? It is coated with what appears to be metallic dust.
    “I know lots of people who are educated far beyond their intelligence”

    Lewis Grizzard

  • #2
    I use CRC's Lectra-Motive which can be found for around $5-6 per can at the right places. Pull the motor apart and rinse clean. If its really bad then remove the globes of grease and crud prior to spraying. Personally considering the price of bearings I usually replace them at the same time. You can get good "C3" motor grade bearings (Japanese Nachi or similar) for a few dollars a piece.

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    • #3
      Anhydrous (water free) isopropyl alcohol , you can immerse the stator in it, or spray and brush. do it outside and allow to air dry. Always worth checking and repacking the bearings, no point in replacing them unless they are worn or damaged. One of my first jobs as an apprentice was to strip and rebuild3 phase electric motors which had been in factory service for over 35 years. it was very rare that the bearings needed replacement, IF the motor has been properly maintained.

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      • #4
        make sure you clean out the rotor coolong holes!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Ohio Mike View Post
          I use CRC's Lectra-Motive which can be found for around $5-6 per can at the right places. Pull the motor apart and rinse clean. If its really bad then remove the globes of grease and crud prior to spraying. Personally considering the price of bearings I usually replace them at the same time. You can get good "C3" motor grade bearings (Japanese Nachi or similar) for a few dollars a piece.
          This.......
          1601

          Keep eye on ball.
          Hashim Khan

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          • #6
            Thanks everyone for the replies. I should have known that CRC would have a product for this job.
            “I know lots of people who are educated far beyond their intelligence”

            Lewis Grizzard

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            • #7
              Why not use mineral spirits? (paint thinner)
              I have washed many motors in my parts washer and never had an issue.
              They sell "special" chemicals, but why???

              -Doozer
              DZER

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Doozer View Post
                Why not use mineral spirits? (paint thinner)
                I have washed many motors in my parts washer and never had an issue.
                They sell "special" chemicals, but why???

                -Doozer
                You're a little late to the game, but I've had more pressing issues to take care of since the original post. Consequently, the motor is still in the same condition as when I got it. So to answer your question, I didn't want to risk dunking the thing in anything without being positive that the stuff wasn't going to eat the varnish off of the wires. I had a bad experience like that a long time ago, so a little gun shy now. Mineral spirits sounds good, so thanks Doozer.
                “I know lots of people who are educated far beyond their intelligence”

                Lewis Grizzard

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                • #9
                  Depends on the varnish.

                  Regardless, I would not "soak" it with mineral spirits. Some things which do not "dissolve" a coating, will still cause it to soften or even wrinkle, both bad for windings
                  1601

                  Keep eye on ball.
                  Hashim Khan

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    In the world of vintage radio, fill the bathtub with soapy water, dunk and swish about for a few minutes, rinse off and dry - the drying on a motor is easy, blow out with airline, put a battery charger on one of the windings and a couple of amps through t for a few days, dry as a bone.

                    Dave H. (the other one)
                    Rules are for the obedience of fools, and the guidance of wise men.

                    Holbrook Model C Number 13 lathe, Testa 2U universal mill, bikes and tools

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                    • #11
                      I wouldn't know which wires to hook the charger to.
                      “I know lots of people who are educated far beyond their intelligence”

                      Lewis Grizzard

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