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GE Vortalex FM12 M1 pedestal  Rate Topic 
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 Posted: Sun Jun 10th, 2018 09:42 pm
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Kendal Land
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The fan has been rewired. Power to the motor and it hums. But the blades won’t spin. Any ideas?

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 Posted: Sun Jun 10th, 2018 10:06 pm
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Stan Adams
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Probably a bad motor bearing. I restored one of these a number of years ago that would not run. Had new bearings made & it was off to the races!

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 Posted: Sun Jun 10th, 2018 10:14 pm
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Kendal Land
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Thanks any suggestions about where to get one

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 Posted: Mon Jun 11th, 2018 12:14 am
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Stan Adams
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Try Daryl Hudson, his contact is in the info section.

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 Posted: Mon Jun 11th, 2018 11:07 am
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Lane Shirey
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To check the bearings, grab the blade and try to lift it up and down. Look at the rotor shaft to see if it’s moving up and down in the housing / bearing.

Any up and down play indicates a work bearing.


If they’re ok, then here are a few things that can cause a tight motor. First of all, the motor should be taken apart and the rotor and bearing surfaces cleaned of all old oil and sticky residue. And then the bearings should be lubricated with proper oil. 


Another potential issue is that most GE bearings are “self aligning” meaning that they swivel in a ball and socket design. When GE (and some other) motors are disassembled , upon reassembly, the bearings can get out of alignment. It’s crucial to tap all around the rotor shaft as you tighten the motor end caps to align the bearings so you don’t bind the shaft. Also as you reassemble, keep testing the rotor for free movement. It should spin freely and coast after giving it a spin.


Any tightness and the motor won’t run, since fan motors have very tittle torque.


I hope that helps you to solve your problem. 

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 Posted: Mon Jun 11th, 2018 02:25 pm
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Kendal Land
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Thanks!  Will give it a shot this evening and post back

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 Posted: Mon Jun 11th, 2018 04:57 pm
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Lawrence Smith
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also to add to Lane's comment, tapping on the rotor shaft after the fan is assembled is sometimes required.  A non marring hammer & gentle taps around the rotor shaft. I had a ge like that-- tried the tapping method-- about to give up & presto I hit the sweet spot & the fan runs like a champ. Point is it takes patience with these old fans.      

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 Posted: Tue Jun 12th, 2018 03:21 pm
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Kendal Land
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Bearings seem to be working so I cleaned them out last night and found pieces of what I assume are washers that broke down over time.  What kinds of washers should I replace these with?  Also, would fan oil or sewing machine oil be considered proper oil?  Or grease of some kind?

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 Posted: Tue Jun 12th, 2018 06:21 pm
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Stan Adams
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The washers are thrust washers & prevent too much end play making the fan noisy. They are available from McMaster Carr, my Ace Hardware carries them, but not all do.
For lubrication, the easiest to find is 3N1 oil in the blue can. Grease is only used in the oscillator gear box. I use plain old wheel bearing grease available at any auto parts for the gear box grease. Most of those rely on a certain amount of oil to ooze out of the grease to lube the rear bearing. Many thick greases will not do this.

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