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Thread: Calling all GAI Filler/Capper users

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909
    Time for the next adventure: replacing the drive cam on the crowner. Ours is the older model, with the UHMW plastic cam. Years of running with the occasional crown and broken glass mixed with grease has worn this part to the point it barely works. The part of the cam that pushes the crowner through the bottom of its stroke is worn flat for about 8 inches, having lost almost an inch of material at the lowest point. We bought a new, SS cam, which isn't here yet but it seems like time to start tearing the old one out. Victor from AWS Pros. estimated that it should be about a full day's job from start to finish. He also warned me that there is a large nut with left-hand threads somewhere in there, so I'll have to keep my eyes open.

    Wish me luck--
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    21
    Quote Originally Posted by TGTimm View Post
    Time for the next adventure: replacing the drive cam on the crowner. Ours is the older model, with the UHMW plastic cam. Years of running with the occasional crown and broken glass mixed with grease has worn this part to the point it barely works. The part of the cam that pushes the crowner through the bottom of its stroke is worn flat for about 8 inches, having lost almost an inch of material at the lowest point. We bought a new, SS cam, which isn't here yet but it seems like time to start tearing the old one out. Victor from AWS Pros. estimated that it should be about a full day's job from start to finish. He also warned me that there is a large nut with left-hand threads somewhere in there, so I'll have to keep my eyes open.

    Wish me luck--
    I was just looking at ours the other day during our PM and thankfully it's been SS from day one so it's still in good shape.

    The left-hand threads would make sense for the part that bolts the cam down on the crowner assembly, since a counterclockwise rolling cam would unscrew the nut over time.

    Good luck with the tear down. Let us know how it goes.
    Nate Jackson
    Packaging Manager
    Marble Brewery
    Albuquerque, NM

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909
    Whew!

    I finished the swap-out about 1 hour ago. I ran a bunch of bottles through and everything is looking good. I'm guessing the job took about 5 hours total, but I had several interruptions yesterday so it's hard to be precise.

    Manhandling the vibrator assy. out of the monobloc was too much fun. For the re-assy, I broke it down into two reasonably sized and weighted pieces. The new SS cam weighs something like 100 lbs, and took three people to get it into place. That's one big hunka' stainless!

    That left-hand thread ring-nut was a tough nut to crack, literally. Finally, a 36" pipe wrench and burly brewer got 'er done. Thanks, Dave!

    Since the cam is indexed and retained by a large key, there's really no reason why a left-hand thread is necessary, but, hey, not too long ago European cars came with left-hand threaded lug nuts on one side of the car (I never could and still can't remember which side it was). Apparently, no one had told them that American cars do not tend to lose the wheels on that side!

    I decided to leave the shroud off the crowner cam, to make for easier cleaning and lubing. The filth that had accumulated inside that shroud was amazing! This shroud should be made in two pieces so it's easy to remove and clean inside. As it is, it's the last thing that comes off before the cam.

    So now we have a nice, shiny, $3,500 drive cam for the crowner. The test bottles I ran had very consistent crown crimping, which was something we were having problems with. I'll try to post a pic of the old cam so you can see why.

    Time for an apres-fix beverage--
    Last edited by TGTimm; 09-05-2013 at 03:00 PM.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909

    Using the cleaning cam?

    We finally got our cleaning cam from Italy, and now the question is... how exactly do we set-up and use the thing? There are two eccentric mounts, one of which was tightened when we received the cam, the other loose.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Mammoth Lakes, CA
    Posts
    70

    service contract

    Hi,
    Has anyone on this thread received a service contract from Prospero charging $25 per every 15 min. spent on the phone for technical support? Also a breakdown of costs for a technician to come out, which is fine. The charge for phone calls seems ridiculous to me.

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909
    No, jbs, that's relatively new. I've spent hours on the phone--especially back at the start-up of our machine--and not been charged a "service fee". That's going to make the often touchy GAI a much less appealing choice of bottler.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Mammoth Lakes
    Posts
    1

    Taking apart the capper capsule to replace springs inside? GAI 3003A Bier

    Hello,

    We are trying to take apart the capper capsule to replace the springs inside. Anyone have any suggestions on how to break into this thing?

    Thanks

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909
    Hmm.... Do you mean the lower unit of the capper (brass cylinder inside the capper), or the upper unit (big stainless main body), or both?

    Anyway, both of these contain large springs under significant pre-load. If you don't have the tools and experience to deal with these potentially dangerous springs, take the unit(s) to a good machine shop to have the springs replaced.

    I've made a fairly simple spring compressor for working on the lower unit, as it needs frequent greasing and periodic spring replacement. If you have some welding skills and a scrap yard, you can whip one up. I'll try to make time to post some photos of mine soon.

    Something I've recently discovered: the Allen grub screw that prevents the guts of the lower unit from rotating (diag. 4270-50005, part # 50160, M10 X 6 dowel) tends to back out during operation, jamming the lower unit into the upper body. This will cause no end of headaches, including bent/stuck caps and broken bottles. I removed this screw (but kept it for use in disassembling the unit) and have had very few capper problems since then.

    Here are some pics of the crowner parts and my spring compressor: http://www.flickr.com/photos/9484263...7633249986371/ I've added some captions to explain what the poor images are meant to convey.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909

    Another Capper Solution!

    We had a few total nightmare bottling runs recently. The capper malfunctioned almost continuously, bending caps, jamming, and breaking bottles. I nearly had an aneurism trying to figure it out, but finally realized that the lower unit (bronze cylinder) was jamming inside the capper housing. I traced the problem down to the screw that prevents the insides of the lower unit from rotating (diag. 4270-50005, part # 50160, M10 X 6 dowel). It would back out of the housing during the run and jam things up. Apparently, it doesn't take much drag to completely frag the capper.

    Here's a pic: http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8109/8...34d40d67_o.jpg

    The screw is near the top of the unit, above the slot. Sorry about the poor pic quality.

    Take this screw out! It doesn't seem to be needed for anything but keeping the inner shaft from rotating when the unit is being taken apart or put back together--so don't lose it. We've been running without the screw for 3 weeks now, and the capper has never run so well.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909

    Photo tutorial: capper tear-down, maintenance, assembly.

    Last edited by TGTimm; 01-17-2014 at 02:53 PM.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  11. #41
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909

    Another crowner tip

    The crowner is running fine, about an hour into the bottling run, when all of a sudden you have a rash of bent crowns. This happens to us rather frequently, especially if the beer is a bit foamy.

    When you open the lower caps channel, the pivoting bit you open to clean the jammed crowns, be sure to grab a rag or paper towel and get that channel perfectly clean and dry. Shoot it with a little silicone spray. The crowner will probably run fine for all or most of the rest of the run.

    In the lower caps channel, only the weight of the crowns and those above feed the crowns to the crowner, and crowns don't weigh much. A little resistance from beer foam or water in the channel is all it takes to prevent the final crown from seating completely and it gets bent.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  12. #42
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    17

    OMBF Lubricating Oil?

    Hey Folks! My turn to weigh in here...

    I'm Richard from Cascade Brewing in Portland, OR. Among my ever-growing list of responsibilities, I currently operate and maintain our GAI 1301, OMBF Wiring Machine, and our Enos Euro Labeler. I was glad to see this thread existed; we need all the help we can get with these things.

    Now for my question: Does anyone out there have an OMBF Automatic Wiring Machine as part of their bottling line? (For those of you who use standard crown caps, this machine puts a Champagne style wire cage/hood over the top of a cork). We have an OMBF 2002A - 2TR/10 and cannot figure out what oil it needs for lubrication. The manual's description and Propsero's explanation has left me more confused than informed on what to get so I thought I'd reach out and see if anyone else has tackled this problem already. Thanks in advance!

    -Richard

  13. #43
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    17
    jbs,

    I did just get one of these sent over to me a couple of weeks ago. Our machine is still very new so I was also surprised to see it (and the cost breakdown). I have not followed up with them about it at all thus far.

    I hope that helps.

    -Richard

    Quote Originally Posted by jbs View Post
    Hi,
    Has anyone on this thread received a service contract from Prospero charging $25 per every 15 min. spent on the phone for technical support? Also a breakdown of costs for a technician to come out, which is fine. The charge for phone calls seems ridiculous to me.

  14. #44
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,909
    Richard--can you post any of the info you got from Prospero on that oil? Did any come with the machine? If so, any designations on the label would be helpful in finding a local source of an equivalent oil--perhaps one not containing Unobtainium--for you.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  15. #45
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    17
    Quote Originally Posted by TGTimm View Post
    Richard--can you post any of the info you got from Prospero on that oil? Did any come with the machine? If so, any designations on the label would be helpful in finding a local source of an equivalent oil--perhaps one not containing Unobtainium--for you.

    Sure. Here's what I know so far:

    1) Prospero provided no oil for this machine.

    2) The OMBF Manual suggests to use one of the following oils for Bearings, Bushings, and Mechanical Units:

    ROLOIL - Variax 90 AZ, SAE 80-90
    Esso - Gear 4 x 90
    IP - Dextron - fluid
    Agip - F1 Rotra 90
    bp - Energol gear oil, SAE 90
    TOTAL - Totadil CD, SAE-90

    3) When posing the question to Prospero, they told me that the oil must be Food Grade.

    What I have concluded so far is that I am looking for a Food Grade gear oil at SAE 90 (I have only found one from Grainger that matches this description). However, whether this needs to be synthetic/non-synthetic, or be able to handle "extreme pressure" is beyond me. This is my first time ever having to worry about the details of oil selection, so most of this is a mystery.

    Any suggestions?

    -Richard

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