Unstable mains voltage

Discussion in 'The Workbench' started by Kunnz, Dec 10, 2009.

  1. Kunnz

    Kunnz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Messages:
    846
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    No Fixed Abode
    Hi all

    I was working on my superlead today and was checking some voltages but found out that the line/mains supply was taking a dive.
    Where I live the supply is supposed to be roughly 230v at 50Hz. The highest I’ve ever measured it to be was 244v at about 05.00am.
    Today at 5:30 pm I measured the mains to be 216v so that’s a difference of 26v. The HT voltage was 290v, the Bias voltage measured 116v and the heaters measured 5.2v.

    I have the mains hardwired to the 245v mains tap, do you think I should move the mains down to the 225v tap or move the HT and bias from the 320v and 130v up to the 375v and 160v taps and re-bias the tubes.

    I know that the mains fluctuates at certain times of the day like dinner time and football matches etc etc, but I know that voltage and current are inversely proportional, so does that effect bias set up and also put lots of strain on the components having to draw more current when the voltages drops?

    Kunnz
     
  2. Wilder Amplification

    Wilder Amplification New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2009
    Messages:
    6,163
    Likes Received:
    723
    Location:
    Fresno, CA
    Wow...I've never seen the mains here in the US vary THAT much. Might be time to invest in a rackmount voltage regulator (not a "power conditioner"...a voltage regulator).
     
  3. Iron Mang

    Iron Mang New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kaleponi
    Man you are having large voltage swings. A swing of 3-5 volts is normal but what you got going on is bad. I think Mister Wilder has a good resolve to get an AC line regulator supply. You might check with you Power Company and see what they are supposed to guarantee you.
     
  4. big dooley

    big dooley Well-Known Member VIP Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    7,353
    Likes Received:
    2,883
    Location:
    zeeland
    we've got the same going on in our rehearsal room... but to a point it's our own fault..
    we've got everything on 1 group only, including two 2000watt heaters, a coffee machine and a fridge (very important :D) oh yeah, forgot some lightbulbs as well
    when everything is on we have about 200Vac.
    with the heaters turned off and enough coffee consumed we're at 220Vac...
    i wonder what happens if we screw out those lightbulbs

    one of these days we're gonna make more groups... this is asking for trouble eventually
     
  5. Kunnz

    Kunnz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Messages:
    846
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    No Fixed Abode
    Ok thanks, maybe a voltage regulator is what I need for the whole house never mind the Marshall. I think the (cheap-shot assholes) power supplier company has a lot to answer for.

    I've just checked the mains right now and it's back up to 232v, (01:30pm).
    I'm presuming that the location where I live may be the problem so I'm gonna keep an eye on the mains supply.

    I live right next to a commercial industrial estate where there are loads of factories and buisineses and things. Also right on my street there are loads of shops eg; a laundromat, a pizza, chineese, indian, burger a bowling alley, 7-11plus banks and a whole bunch of other stuff.

    When the outdoor ice-room chillers for the shop next door kick in (about every 15 minutes) the lights in my house dim as the contacter kicks in.

    Would it be advisable to install some inrush current limiters or a transient suppressor or even both? And what about power factor correction (current lagging)? from all of those buisinesses. I'm probably paying way over the top for my electricity bill.

    I'm gonna have to contact the supplier as I have more sensitive equipment that fails to power up at these busy times. This sucks!
    Thank F..K Im not in hospital.

    I'll let you's know how I get on with this issue.

    Kunnz.
     
  6. Kunnz

    Kunnz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Messages:
    846
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    No Fixed Abode
    Hi

    An engineer from the electricity supply company phoned me this afternoon and told me that a flock of birds flew into a near by substation yesterday and took it out. He said he’s gonna call at rush hour next week and check the supply anyhow just in case.

    Kunnz
     
  7. Jesstaa

    Jesstaa Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Messages:
    2,677
    Likes Received:
    226
    Location:
    Victoria, Australia
    I occasionally have pretty bad power in my place. We've had plugs EXPLODE out of sockets (Verryyy rare, but it has happened) and light bulbs shoot straight out of their socket.

    thank fuck my Marshall is still alive though
     
  8. Wilder Amplification

    Wilder Amplification New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2009
    Messages:
    6,163
    Likes Received:
    723
    Location:
    Fresno, CA
    Yeah but could you just imagine your valves exploding out of there sockets? It'd be like something you'd see in an old Judas Priest video. :D
     
  9. Iron Mang

    Iron Mang New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kaleponi
    Thats good they are at least cheking into the power.
     
  10. MartyStrat54

    MartyStrat54 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    26,014
    Likes Received:
    9,593
    Location:
    Licksville
    Well all power comes from a step down transformer. They don't last forever. I once moved to a nice place and I noticed that the house had some serious electrical supply issues. I called the electric company and they sent a tech out. Sure enough, the transformer was shot. It was replaced and my voltage was fine the rest of the time I lived there.

    If the utility company has too many feeds on the transformer, you are going to get a lot of peaks and dips. Probably nothing you can do about it, since it is sort of a global issue. You know, you have to have the power to sell the power.

    Here where I live, squirrels get up inside of a transformer and it fries the hair right off of them before blowing a protective fuse. Those birds must have been do-do's. I thought they were extinct.

    Big Dooley-Is it cold in Holland all of the time? (Two heaters.) And when are you going to send me some Amperex tubes?
     
  11. MajorNut1967

    MajorNut1967 New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Messages:
    3,883
    Likes Received:
    338
    LOL Yes me too I love the Amperex 12AX7's.
     
  12. big dooley

    big dooley Well-Known Member VIP Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    7,353
    Likes Received:
    2,883
    Location:
    zeeland
    why do you guy's think i've set my clogs on fire? :lol:
    no, holland isn't cold, or warm.... it's a very mild climate, but with loads and loads of rain, just like england... it's called a sea-climate

    btw i really admire your knowledge... i've just researched the amperex name... looks like it was a part of philips... yes a dutch electronic company...
    really impressive, that you know what came out of our tiny little country...

    but thse tubes were made in the states, so ... i'm sorry, no tubes...
    this is the address i get them from... he's got some NOS tubes as well:
    Tonefactory Voor al uw versterkerbuizen, gitaaronderdelen en meer! (dutch language)
     
  13. MartyStrat54

    MartyStrat54 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    26,014
    Likes Received:
    9,593
    Location:
    Licksville
    Well actually Amperex was an American brand bought out by the mighty tube giant Philips. It had some tube factories in Herleen and decided these factories would produce their newly designed 12AU7, 12AT7 and 12AX7. These tubes were originally sold as Bugle Boy. Then as Amperex. I have six Bugle Boys from 1958 and 59. I also have a bunch of 12AX7 and 7025 Amperex. I buy and sell NOS tubes so I keep a lot of Philips made tube, because they made the best tubes. Philips owned part of Telefunken and a large part of Mullard. They made RCA look like a Kool-Aid stand.

    I still haven't figured out how many tube companies that Philips owned or had a major share of the ownership. Of course, as the darkest days arrived, Philips bought out Sylvania in 1984 and turned that into Philips ECG and they lasted until 1988. America was out of the tube business at that time. It was sad too, because ECG made all of the great power tubes, like dual getter 6CA7's and real 6550's.
     
  14. big dooley

    big dooley Well-Known Member VIP Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    7,353
    Likes Received:
    2,883
    Location:
    zeeland
    herleen doesn't excist... i guess you mean heerlen...
    that's in limburg... the southeast part of the netherlands, the highlands sort to speak...
    the headquarters of philips are stationed in eindhoven

    i'm living in the so-called "delta" in the southwest... due to the great flood disaster in 1953 there were a lot of dykes and dams built in the 60's and 70's untill in 1987 the last part of those phenomenal constructions, the "philipsdam" was finished... the most famous part is the "oosterscheldedam", a dam that is always open to let salt seawater in, but at times of tide and hurricanes, they can close the 6km waterway totally...

    in fact some american engineers, came to take a view around here, after the katrina hit on new orleans

    and yes, i'm proud of living here :)
     
  15. MartyStrat54

    MartyStrat54 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    26,014
    Likes Received:
    9,593
    Location:
    Licksville
    Yeah, that's my bad memory. It's Heerlen. I knew there were some double e's in there. Anyway, they made a whole lot of tubes there and the one's made in Holland has special codes on the tubes. I'd love to be able to visit Holland. I had a chance in 1977 when I was in the Air Force. However, something came up and they sent me to Southeast Asia instead. I think I would have liked Holland better.
     
  16. Kunnz

    Kunnz Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2009
    Messages:
    846
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    No Fixed Abode
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2009

Share This Page