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Mini tower desk fan smells like it burned

My mini tower desk fan just stopped working. Everything (including interface and the actuator) worked but the motor. When i inspected it (still plugged) it was hot. I unplugged it and let it cool. Thinking it was the dust building up, i opened it and vacuumed the dust away. I tested it and it still didn't work but it emitted a buzzing sound. I examined the electric motor and it was really different to what i expected. Connected to the turbine was a cylindrical solid metal horizontally "wrapped" with flat metal which with an attached coil electromagnet in its side. (See this picture: Note: You can slightly see this rotating cylindrical solid metal in the picture. As i personally tried to rotate the turbine, i felt that it was in need of lubrication. It turned like what it feels to twist a pen cover on a pen. In theory, to make the fan more efficient, resistance among the moving part should be the least. My question is, is it SAFE to lubricate (using a WD40) the rotating cylindrical solid metal? Or basing on the symptoms, is the motor actually dead?

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Re: Mini tower desk fan smells like it burned

No. you are correct in attempting to lubricate this motor, except that use 30W motor oil...WD40 is great to "loosen" the bearing, will only last a short time. The motor shaft should spin freely as this is not a permanent magnet type motor. This motor is widely used and quite common. I often "cure" broken machines by lubricating these motors. There is only a magnetic coupling (when powered) between the rotating shaft and coil. it should be safe to handle this motor even when powered up, providing there is no electrical damage to the coil. Think of this motor as a magnetic machine that requires AC power for the magnet.

Posted on Jul 25, 2007

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