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Sean Campbell
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Joined: Fri Jul 6th, 2018
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana USA
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Hello All!

Recently, I made a post about my SMY flinging oil across the desk and asking for solutions. I took the fan apart on Monday and discovered a flange on the back of the blade hub. I took this to mean fiber washers are not the issue as this flange is meant to direct oil back toward the return. The oil returns, however, were totally clogged with black goo. I cleaned that out, replaced the oil, reassembled the fan, and let it run on the kitchen table for a few hours. No problems! Last night I brought the fan up to my room, turned it on and went to sleep. When I woke up, there was oil everywhere on the desk. What's worse, it destroyed a family heirloom. This incident made me nine miles past angry. Hopefully someone can explain what's up with this thing, or it's going to become a permanent static display. 


(Between this and my Quiet Blade rattle I wonder: are all GEs this much of a pain...)

Zackri Higgins
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Is your rotor centered? My R&M 2110 used to leak oil out of every seam practically, until I realized that the rotor was too far back. Not sure about the SMY, but the rotor on my R&M has oil grooves on each side (much like the ones on the blade hub), and the front one wasn’t inside the oil-return, which caused the leaking. A few fiber washers got the rotor centered, and the oil groove back where it belongs, and now the fan can actually hold oil.

GEs are great in my experience. I run a 1922 12” AOU and a 1947 10” Vortalex almost daily, and they have been amazing.

Sean Campbell
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I’m not sure? How can I tell if it is centered? It does have fiber washers. The fan was professionally restored when I bought it. What’s even weirder is it didn’t start this until a few weeks ago.

Zackri Higgins
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My R&M was the same way; ran great for a couple of days and magically started leaking.
I’d take the rotor out and see if it has any oil grooves on it, and then you’ll have to look through the vents with a flashlight and mess with it until you can’t see the oil grooves on either side (exactly what I did with my R&M, and it hasn’t leaked since).

Here’s a pic of the oil groove I’m talking about (outlined in green. It’s a little hard to see because of how dirty it is, but you can see it if you look closely):

Attached Image (viewed 310 times):

2FE1FD54-4F4C-4F73-A347-9D473AEE4BD4.jpeg

Sean Campbell
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Ok, I’ll check that. Could old wicks possibly cause this? I’ve never gotten around to changing the old ones out.

Alex Rushing
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Location: Montgomery, Alabama USA
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Sorry to read about your heirloom being destroyed, Sean! Definitely a bad fan situation. :(
Is the oil wick swollen around the middle?
If so, the oil may be pooling in the drain holes and running back out under the blade collar or in the case at the bearing. I think there is ample room in the hole the blade goes into for oil to run out. 
May not be the case, but trying to throw some ideas out just in case.

Also, one last thing, is there any play up and down in the rotor? Indicating worn bearings that could let oils leak out.
Maybe see if there is a bunch of oil in the motor case as well from multiple oilings trying to solve the problem. When the motor gets warm, the oil might be thinning under the stator and making way out of the motor case.

Last edited on Thu Oct 3rd, 2019 02:57 pm by Alex Rushing

Sean Campbell
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Alex, good suggestions! I have checked the bearings. There is no play in the shaft whatsoever. This is also why I somewhat doubt the theory of the rotor not being centered. The motor can be take apart and put back together very smoothly and runs very well. The housing barely gets warm. When I opened it up, the interior was dry.There is also never any oil residue around the motor seems. When it leaks, there is always a line of oil under the blades on the surface of the table going the way the blades turn. There is also a large puddle on the base directly below the bearing. The blades will have oil streaks. I made sure the return holes are clear. I’m really wondering about those wick since they are hard as a rock... 

Zackri Higgins
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Definitely can’t hurt to change the wicks. Don’t know for sure if old wicks would cause this, but I’d definitely change them if they are hard.

Alex Rushing
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Just throwing one more idea out:If you loosen the blade set screw, is there any play of the blade hub and rotor shaft?
I am imagining a rare case in which there may be play at the blade mount, and oil makes its'way between the hub collar and rotor shaft, then seeps through the set screw threads.

Just thinking of myself as the oil and trying to find a way out of the oil system. :)

Sean Campbell
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Much thanks for your hard work in the idea department Alex! That’ll also be a no. The blade slips on and off nice and tight. I’ll report back once I’ve got new wicks. We’ll see if that fixes the problem.

Lane Shirey
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Put a fiber washer between the blade hub and bearing to act as a slinger.  

Sean Campbell
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Location: Indianapolis, Indiana USA
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This has been awhile, but I finally got around to trying to fix the oil issue with this fan. When I removed the oil cup, I noticed the wick was slightly scrunched up at the top. I found the bottom of the bend and trimmed it to that point. I then filled it with oil, put paper towels around it and ran it for awhile yesterday and today. It turns out the wick was too long. It runs wonderfully now and holds oil! Case closed! X)

Lane Shirey
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First of all, I’d splurge on a new wick.  Secondly I’d hazard a guess that it’s not slinging oil because it May no longer be touching the shaft since you trimmed it. Pull it apart and check the oil drains again. Maybe a chunk of goo broke loose and clogged it again. That’d be my bet

Sean Campbell
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Joined: Fri Jul 6th, 2018
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana USA
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Thanks for the suggestions Lane, but I’m almost positive the wick is touching the shaft. I watched the spring compress as I put the oil cup back in. And yes, I’m waiting on the replacement wicks.


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