BRADLEY SMOKER | "Taste the Great Outdoors"

Bradley Smokers => The Digital Smokers (BTDS76P & BTDS108P) => Topic started by: Mr Walleye on December 31, 2006, 11:18:07 AM

Title: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on December 31, 2006, 11:18:07 AM
I'm right in the middle of a batch of jerky and here is what happened. I went out to dump the spent pucks because the smoke process was done and I discovered everything was shutdown. My first thought was the small wire connection was causing grief but I can't even get it to give me the beep and error message. There is absolutely no power. I checked the fuse and unfortunately broke it trying to get it out so I couldn't tell if it was bad. Any idea what size fuse that is? I replaced it with a 10 amp fuse and still nothing. I did connect the power directly to the box and the main element does work so hopefully the cool down period won't hurt the jerky. It does have cure in it so I think it will be ok.

Any ideas?

Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: owrstrich on December 31, 2006, 11:59:32 AM
dang walls i hope you get it figured out...

i aint gotts no info on a dbs...

one time a brisket thief stole my brisket after a 17 hour smoke... i had nothing... the most important thing is you still have your jerky...

you gotta eat...

owrstrich
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on December 31, 2006, 12:48:14 PM
10 buck says when you open up the unit you will find the wires to the fuse holder charred.  Probably even burned in half right at the fuse holder.  Call Bradley and they will send you a new one because they like to do that rather than fix the problem.

Run to Radio Shack and buy a new 10 amp fuse holder cause the one you got is melted gue. You didnt break the fuse, the bottom end is welded into melted plastic.  Interesting the fuse didn't blow isn't it?

While at Radio Shack you will also need two terminals to put back on the wires after you clip off the burned part.  You should also pick up an 8amp fuse not the 10 amp that normally comes origional.

I have no qualms about keeping the two old generators that Bradley has replaced for this same thing for me already. I think the strategy is they make so much money on the pucks they dont mind replacing the generators.

I have used both of the 'repaired' genertors for several hours and not even a blown fuse on them... again no clue on the cause but THIS problem if wide spread NEEDS FIXED and I am just a little more than pissed of about it...!!! >:(  >:(  >:(
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on December 31, 2006, 12:57:35 PM
Thanks WCK

I did take the generator apart and yes the power wire on the fuse holder was burnt off. It didn't appear to have a connector on it unless it disintegrated. So I just soldered it back on and stuck a 10 amp fuss in it but it still doesn't work. Maybe a guy should run an 8 amp fuse. Unless it continually blows it might help. I wonder why this would happen without blowing the fuse? I will give Bradley a call on Tuesday and see what they have to say.

Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on December 31, 2006, 01:07:18 PM
It won't work, The connector is toasted so bad you cant tell one was ever installed.  The fuse holder is also toasted inside. Ohm it and its open with the fuse installed.  Whole thing is a 7 dollar repair.  When you call Bradley the relevant question is WHY does this happen? And tell them to send you two new generators cause you know someone who has had this happen twice and you just want to save everyone the hastle (there was another one posted on the forum and I cant find it anymore soe that makes 4)! :(
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on December 31, 2006, 01:13:21 PM
Other possible no power, On my last one the GFCI tripped, forgot about your garage set up.
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on December 31, 2006, 02:34:13 PM
That was the first thing I thought of but I checked and the power is good, right now I have the box plugged in directly to finish the jerky off.

Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on December 31, 2006, 02:42:39 PM
Good deal, sorry that happened.  Let me know if you get any real answers figured out.  Thanks
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on December 31, 2006, 02:47:08 PM
I wonder if it is the result of using a poor quality conector? I'm not sure if that could cause this or not.

Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Arcs_n_Sparks on December 31, 2006, 02:48:10 PM
That, or all the shaking coming from China..........

Arcs_n_Sparks
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on December 31, 2006, 04:06:29 PM
Need a current draw that builds enough heat to melt through the wiring to the point it drops off the connector with the terminal so hot it is not even recognizable as having been there...but not enough draw the 10 amp fuse wont blow.  I have gone to 8 amp fuse in the same style holder but have not lost a fuse yet and have not had a generator repeat the event.

10 amp is just under 2 times the 5.5 amps the unit would draw. 8 is just short of 1.5. 

I still wont be real comfortable until i know what causes it.

Sparky, the wire to the fuse holder melts off and breaks in half. Coming off the other side of the holder the insulation is charred about a half inch down.  The fuse holder plastic actually melts. Something has to be drawing excess current but under 10 amps right?  Wonder how much current / time would be required to generate that heat without blowing fuse? Only thing different than OBS is the display and whatever for monitoring box temp. Niether should draw much of anything. LEDs and a temp probe? Some lazy component cycles the heater bulb. What do ya think?
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Arcs_n_Sparks on December 31, 2006, 04:21:43 PM
If you have a poor ohmic connection, that can lead to self-heating. A five volt drop at 5 amps is 25 watts, which can generate a lot of heat if not dissipated properly (that equates to a one ohm connection). A fuse holder is not a good heat sink, and not hard to imagine enough heat to melt the connection. There may be enough conduction to char the other side. If the connection is more than one ohm, it just gets worse.

Only way to know is either measure the resistance or measure the voltage drops in operation.

Arcs_n_Sparks
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on December 31, 2006, 05:06:24 PM
 A & S

Do you think if a guy soldered the connection would it be any better than the crimp on style connectors?

Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Arcs_n_Sparks on December 31, 2006, 05:17:55 PM
Yes. I usually solder my connections after crimping. A well done crimp will form a gas tight connection and does not need to be soldered. The operative phrase here is "well done." I've seen a lot of poorly done crimps, including my own. Solder is your friend...

Arcs_n_Sparks

Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on December 31, 2006, 05:25:57 PM
Opened the new generator, could not get on the terminal / nice plastic jacket covering them.  Voltage drop is not really visible on this little meter (analog no read out). But zero may be the right answer on a good unit. 

Solder makes sense, will do that over the crimp connectors on the old generators.

I feel better anyway. THANKS
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Gizmo on December 31, 2006, 06:20:55 PM
Does anyone know what the gauge of the wire to and from the fuse holder is?  Seems the wire gauge is too small and with the amoung of current, it is overheating.  Maybe they need to go to 4 or 8 gauge welder's lead wire.  That won't burn off. ;D
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Arcs_n_Sparks on January 01, 2007, 07:03:48 AM
Gizmo,

I guess that would be okay if you need to arc weld.......  :o

This URL has useful information on wire gauge and current carrying capability: http://www.powerstream.com/Wire_Size.htm As noted, it is a very conservative table. For the BS, I would probably use 16 or 18 guage, mostly to get a good crimp, although 20 would work over the short wiring distances involved.

Arcs_n_Sparks

Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Gizmo on January 01, 2007, 08:43:46 PM
I haven't had to open mine yet so don't know what the actual guage is that is being used.  If it is burning off, I would think a heavier guage like 16 or even 14 would provide better capacity without the overheating.  The wire doesn't address the fuse holder if it is also overheating and melting.  I like the solder and crimp method as well.  Solder alone may be an issue as if the wire and holder overheat, it would melt the solder and possibly come apart.
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on January 02, 2007, 07:52:35 PM
Hi Gizmo, I will bring a toasted version on Sat. The fuse holder is (according to current theory) a secondary failure due to heat from a bad connection (between the terminal on fuse holder and the connector on the wire). Given a good connection = wire / holder / et.al should be fine. 

I have asked but dont know if the OBS that would not get power at all was a disconnect at this point.  Lotsa miles China, Canada, to all over USA etc. on the smokers for a connector to loosen up and create a high resistance connection and resulting heat. 
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on January 08, 2007, 02:03:21 PM
Ok, just an update on where I'm at regarding the fried fuse holder issue.

I called Bradley first thing in the morning on Jan 2 and spoke to a lady and explained my problem. She indicated they would either send out a fuse holder or a whole new generator. I promptly asked which it would be and she indicated she would have to check with someone else. I asked if she would like to call me back with what they were going to do and she indicated they were very busy and short staffed so it would not be possible for her to call me back. She did indicate they would ship one or the other out that day.

Well... it arrived today and it's a fuse holder. Nothing else, no explanation, no instructions, just a fuse holder with a wire directly soldered onto it. Do they expect all consumers to be capable of tearing down the smoke generator and re-wiring a new fuse holder into it? I know, I know... I'm capable of doing it but...

I will be more than a little pi$$ed if it doesnt work after this.

Based on all the great reports on customer service I read I'm a little disappointed. Not even an explanation as what happened or why!

Grrr....
Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Oldman on January 08, 2007, 04:50:43 PM
Mike I don't know what the deal is..... I will say I don't like it. This is not the Bradley service I've know before....

I will E-mail Wade Bradley myself...

EDIT: E-mail has been sent.


Olds
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on January 08, 2007, 05:46:29 PM
Thanks Olds

I don't mind putting the fuse holder in but the cause of the problem still concerns me. Plus the issue if it doesn't work afterwords.

Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: West Coast Kansan on January 08, 2007, 08:57:12 PM
 :(  :-[ disappointing
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Wildcat on January 08, 2007, 09:09:05 PM
:(  :-[ disappointing

Very

Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on January 09, 2007, 09:54:42 AM
Just another quick update...

I recieved a call first thing this morning from Brian with Bradley (Thanks Olds). Had a good talk with him regarding this. He indicated there has been a handful of these incidents and they are trying to figure out the cause. They are currently pointing the finger at the fuse holder itself but they don't have a failed fuseholder to look at, nor is the problem being consistant. He is aware that this happens without blowing the fuse. I am going to ship my failed one back to him to see if they can sort it out now that they have my serial number and can tell the batch number from there. To answer the question regarding solder vs crimp-on, the wire is soldered directly to the fuseholder with no crimp-on connector. He also indicated he would keep me posted on any findings. Hopefully I will get a chance tonight to change it and ship it back to him tomorrow.

I am glad they gave me a call and I don't mind swaping out the fuseholder and shipping it back to them in order to make a great product even better. From time to time any manufacturer can and usually does have problems with various component suppliers. The thing that separates the good from the bad is how and if they correct the problem.

Thanks Guys,
Mike
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Oldman on January 09, 2007, 06:46:25 PM
Mike you are more than welcome.... Katie Husband E-mail me back about this, and let's hope it get sorted out soon.
Olds
Title: Re: DBS Problem
Post by: Mr Walleye on January 09, 2007, 06:55:43 PM
I just got in from the garage. I changed out the fuseholder and did a short test. Everything seems to be functioning normally. I guess I'll know for sure once I've done another smoke. When I get into the office tomorrow I will package up the old fuseholder and send it off to Brian at Bradley. Hopefully they get back to me on their findings.

Mike