It now looked like it had to be a short circuit of some form that was putting a “load” on the turbine. The first place to look was the control cabinet, all the wires were sound and no short was evident. So the short had to be down wind so to speak. The turbine had to come down. Taking a 15m tower is not a quick process, but was surprisingly quick this time as the service engineer from Willow Energy inserted a single pulley to augment the winch which meant we needed a longer rope but half the muscle power.
Once the turbine was down and the covers off every thing looked in order. There was surprisingly little wear and tear evident. I will post pictures shortly.
When the turbine blades were pushed round there was clearly some resistance. It was very unlikely to be the bearings as there was no noise or vibration. The investigation therefore focused on short finding. First off the slip rings where checked, they were fine then course of action was to test the core. The three wire one for each phase that come from the core were insolated and the turbine manually turned. There was still resistance and it didn’t turn freely. Things started to look bad.
The next thing was to see it the short could be actually found on the core. We checked to see if the core was shorting with the turbine mounting but it wasn’t. From this it was concluded the short must be between phases in the core itself.
Luckily it was very windy that day gusting up to 30+ mph so once the turbine was reassembled it turned enough to at least power the inverter, so we know that is ok.
So sadly it looks like Windy Miller is right (see previous post http://www.renew-reuse-recycle.com/showarticle.pl?id=859;n=502) and the core has broken! Which means we have another wait till a new one can be delivered and fitted. Apparently core failure is not as un-common as one would have hoped.
I await Proven’s response, so far I have been impressed with them, and I hope and trust that a new core will be dispatched promptly and they will restart my warranty period again.
I will keep you posted.
|My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Stuart - 2007-07-06 13:47:31|
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Simon Ridout - 2007-07-06 22:02:24|
Do not hold your breath! My turbine is still not working. My installers, Turbine Services ltd were due to attend today, with a spare part to fix it. I came home from work today to see the turbine still not turning. It transpired that they had not attended because they are still awaiting a core from Proven which was originally due in on 21 June.
My turbine has now been installed for 37 days and out of action for 22 days. Am I impressed about Proven's standard of service? You can guess at my answer! I hope that some one at Proven keeps an eye on this website and reads about customers real life experiences. An old business adage is 'do not worry about getting new customers if you cannot keep your existing customers happy. I am about to send Proven an email explaining my unhappiness and will follow this up with a phone call on Monday (they had shut the office by the time I could try and contact them today).
I will keep you posted as to what happens. I have been very careful to report facts, rather than vent my true feelings on a £20K purchase!
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Stuart - 2007-07-12 10:35:40|
Looks like I am going to have to wait from 4 - 8 weeks for a new core!
I have heard of various manufacturing strategies for example "just in case" and "just in time" but Proven seem to be operating on a "not in time" parts strategy. This is a very dangerous position for them to be in.
The longer term plan on parts seems to be to make all their suppliers and installers deliberately and consistently over order on parts so that they hold stock for warranty and replacement parts instead of Proven. I cant imagine a lot of the smaller installers will want to see all their money tied up in holding excess Proven parts. I guess i must have misunderstood something!
Your comments about keeping existing customers happy are very pertinent.
I am yet to hear about what will happen with the warranty.
Will keep you posted.
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Stuart - 2007-07-16 12:22:04|
I have just had confirmation that Proven will replace the core. Hurrah!
The next question is when.....
The turbine broke on the 28th of May so soon it will have been off line for two months, sadly I haven’t has the silver lining of generation during this very windy and wet summer. :-(
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Roger Wetherington - 2007-07-16 19:35:07|
So am I right in reading that both Stuart and Simon's newly erected turbines have faulty core (??) problems? What is the core anyway? Sounds like a very important bit in the middle!
In any case, it sounds like both turbines have had the same part fail? Is the core, whatever it is, the kind of thing that gets damaged or worn out in high winds, or is it just bad luck?
Do both of you live in a very windy area? We are planning to move to the Orkneys in the near future and are hoping to also have a turbine of about 6 kw. As Peter Henderson from there writes, it is a very windy place, and I would be concerned that whatever it is causing Simon and Stuart's turbines to fail, happens even quicker on the Orkneys.
Anyone have any experience of running turbines in a high wind location that can offer any advice?
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Simon Ridout - 2007-07-17 18:26:33|
On Fri 13 my core was replaced. In very simple terms the core is the windings of the alternator which generaters the power. All seemed well, until I looked at it on Saturday morning. There was a smell of smoke, soot showing on the volt and amp dials and all appeared dead. Isolating and opening the control box showed that there had been a fire inside. Everything was coated with thick soot. I could not determine if the inverter was damaged or not.
I could not talk to Turbine Services Ltd until yesterday (Monday) morning. They have been very efficient and attended today. I was out and have not had a full report but it looks as if both the control box and the inverter have been replaced. All is working well at present, in light wind, generating about 500-1000 watts.
After previous delays, waiting for parts, I have been very impressed by how quickly this latest problem was solved. I understand that Proven are planning for their main installers to hold a stock of spare parts. This can only be a good idea and improve the service.
Roger - while subject to the usual winter gales, living on the West Coast of Cumbria, there has been nothing exceptional lately, no more than force 7, perhaps gusting 8.
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Mick - 2007-07-18 10:41:33|
That sound scary... really scary
I would respectfully suggest that u got such prompt attention because Proven were potentially looking down the barrel of a potentially very costly product liability claim
My turbine is going well, but for the life of me I can not fadum how some of theses product reliability stories are getting to the field. The product is very simple and the field conditions can we replicated exactly in a lab. If noting else Proven and all turbine manufacturers have to produce product that has incredible reliability ... and the units should come with a 10 year warranty. Kia motors are now offering 7 year warranty with there latest small car ... dear god ...Land rover give us 3 years
A fire is really scary
Even though my turbine is working well... I am now beginning to look at it in a different way ... is this (my turbine) going to give me more headaches and worries that I have already? Is this going to be a reliable work horse that , “net net “adds to my life... or is this thing going to cause me problems?
Thanks for sharing
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Simon Ridout - 2007-07-18 18:37:40|
While not wanting to deminish the potential seriousness of what happened, there is another way of looking at it. The metal control box contained the fire, there were no scorch marks or other evidence of excessive heat on the ply board that the box was mounted on. Therefore the installation worked, in that there was no external damage and the designed distances between the different bits and other shelves etc in my utility room was more than adequate.
In the grand scheme of things, it was a minor event and I am not going to lose any sleep over it. After all, as the saying goes 'worse things happen at sea!'
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||Roger Wetherington - 2007-07-19 09:51:11|
Gosh, this is all very interesting, but worrying with it! 2 turbines have failed with the same fault in the same period, and then one goes on fire! That the fire has not spread is perhaps only good luck, but the fact that so many problems have happened so close together makes me very concerned about buying a turbine if I am going to have this many worries!
I would like to think that if I was going to spend in the teens of thosands of pounds on a wind turbine, that it would work and keep working, and not keep breaking down and setting fire to things every other day.
The whole prospect of survivability and reliability in high winds is something that is of most interest (concern!) to me, and that is why I have been wondering about your wind conditions Simon. I have been doing as much reserach as I have time for into turbines in the north of Scotland (The Shetlands, the Orkneys and Caithness) as this is the kind of wind regimes that will affect any turbine we buy when we make the move to the Orkneys.
There are, rather helpfully, "Renewable Energy Forums" in each of the Shetlands, the Orkneys and Caithness, and I have been trying to use these to find out more about small turbine owners in these areas and their experiences in using turbines in high wind locations. Through this, I have learned about one rather unsuccesful Proven 6 kw installation in Caithness, which I gather has now been dismantled, as the customer was so disappoiunted with the performance.
Information is pretty scant on this, and other projects though. I was hoping to find out more information, through these forums, about the owners of the turbines on the Orkneys and Shetlands I wrote about previously, so we could find out more about what happened there.
Hopefully, some of you on here have good stories to counter what seems to be nothing but bad stories! We are looking forward to having a wind turbine, but need to have a higher level of confidence than we do at the moment! Are there any owners on here with other than Proven turbines? Can they give us the benefit of their experience of ownership? There seems to be quite a few manufacturers out there.
|Re: My Proven 6000 appears to be broken. Getting to the core of the problem!||muymalestado - 2007-07-26 14:49:43|
Very chastening stories here.
I have noted the disappearance from the SSE rooftop in Perth, Scotland, of 2 Renewable Devices SWIFT machines.
The Forestry Commission has one in Inverness which is tied tight with rope - for all to see.
I am just back from flying out of and back to Prestwick Airport and approaching that from Glasgow is a happy Proven on the east side of the road turning away just fine and a static dead Proven on the west side.
We drove past what I think is the manufacturing site for WINDSAVE machines in Livingston with 5 turbines on its roof - one not turning.
One looks for reliability and good-news stories; please tell us if you have one.