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Curveball

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Reply with quote  #1 
DE150PXAAB
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While Dad and I were out fishing the other night, my motor threw a Check Engine light while idling back to the boat ramp.  I hooked up the laptop the next day, and the diagnostic software reported "Code 17."  

Today we hooked the motor up to the garden hose in the driveway to troubleshoot the problem.  The motor ran great for well over an hour.  Could Not Duplicate (CND) another Code 17.  We went ahead and ran the stator resistance tests per the shop manual, and they all passed.  We couldn't do the stator voltage output test since I don't have the "Stator Test Adaptor Tool."  But I did use the diagnostic software to monitor all the voltages while running, and saw no problems.  Solid 55V from the alternator the whole time.  We also tested the big blue capacitor, and it passed as well. 

We did a good visual inspection of the motor, and Dad noticed some discoloring on one of the stator windings.  I've attached a picture below.  The discoloring does appear in the copper.  All the others we could see were nice and bright.  Could this be an indication the stator is about to have a problem?  Maybe why the Code 17 isn't consistent?  Thanks for any insight anyone can provide.

Winding.jpg 

 




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Brian
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2013 Key West 210BR / 150HP E-TEC
Nordmann

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Reply with quote  #2 
It does not look good. Is it burnt, smell like electrical burn or insulation melted?

Tool "Stator Test Adaptor Tool" is needed to make sure this isn't a problem. Your dealer should have one in his possession..

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Curveball

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Thanks for the reply, Nordmann.  I did stick my nose as far in as I could go, but honestly all I could smell was oil and gas.  I'll get the test tool and check further.  Thanks again for the help.


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Brian
DE150PXAAB
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jimh

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Reply with quote  #4 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curveball
..Maybe why the Code 17 isn't consistent..."


I think you mean "constant" or "continual." "Consistent" means something other than constant (never changing} or continual (occurring over and over). "Consistent" means in harmony or in agreement. I would suspect the CODE 17 occurs in harmony with a condition that triggers that particular alarm message. It may not be occurring continually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curveball
Thanks for any insight...


Re the appearance of the stator as seen in the image:

The wiring at the pole-piece of the stator that is encircled in the wide yellow banding drawn onto the image has quite a different appearance than the two other pole-pieces in view in the image. 

The Formvar wiring--the darker thinner windings--look normal. The other material, which appears to be some sort of woven material, appears significantly different than as seen in the two other pole-pieces. This encircled pole piece appears to have a greater diameter to those yellowish woven windings.

I am not really familiar with this particular stator assembly.

Are those woven yellowish windings some sort of insulated multi-strand Litz-wire conductor windings?

Or are they just some sort of top layer of woven strap that is supposed to protect the actual Formvar coated copper windings and help hold them onto the winding form?

Formvar insulation is generally able to tolerate some heat, but too much heat and it will begin to melt. I don't know the precise melting point. See

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formvar

If a coil winding short-circuits to another adjacent coil winding, it creates a shorted-turn. Shorted-turns can create more heat in the coil. For some background read:

http://www.generatortech.com/B-Page2-Theory-Effects.html

A guess at the cause of the problem: there is a shorted turn in the winding of the stator pole-piece that is encircled in yellow in the illustration above which has occurred due to loss of the wire insulation coating from heating above the softening point, the coil is operating at a higher temperature, and the Formvar insulation may have softened and dripped out, and then became absorbed the the woven material holding the copper winding onto the pole-piece. This explanation is consistent with the appearance shown in the the illustration.

As I mentioned elsewhere, excessive flow of electrical current which is itself generally invisible, often leaves behind visual or olfactory evidence that something abnormal has occurred. In this instance, we do have visual evidence. There might not be any olfactory evidence because no combustion has occurred, just a softening and melting of the Formvar insulation. When the Formvar cools back to ambient air temperature and re-hardens, there may not be any residual smell.

Checking for a shorted turn by making a resistance measurement will be difficult. I believe that the wiring of the stator connects several pole piece windings in series. The difference in resistance due to a winding or two in one coil being shorted will be difficult to detect with resistance measurement, as the variation of the winding with a shorted turn from a normal winding will be very small.

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Curveball

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I've put about three hours on the motor since the Code 17.  Still hasn't come back.  I did get the stator test tool, and ran the Stator Voltage Output Test as described in the manual.  I used a non-contact tachometer to measure engine RPM, since the Crankshaft Position Sensor is disconnected for the test.  I ran the test 3 times with the motor cold, and got an average of 36.6 volts at 248 RPM.  I hooked the motor up to the garden hose and ran it at idle for about 10 minutes, to get the motor warm.  I then ran the test again 3 times, and got 41 volts at 257 RPM.  The shop manual says I should be getting 52 volts at 250 RPM.  So it looks like my stator is on it's way out.


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Brian
DE150PXAAB
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2013 Key West 210BR / 150HP E-TEC
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