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Old 15-11-2020, 14:27   #16
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

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Originally Posted by theDangerz View Post
I cant speak for the OP, but we have a similar issue.
Regulator came with the boat... the adjusting tool however didn't seem to.
EXACTLY!

FWIW, it isn't my boat or regulator, I'm helping out a friend who is not "voltage savvy' and certainly not familiar with magnetic reed switches. He is learning fast though. Regulator (but not the magnetic tool) came with the boat and has been working OK ever since he owned the boat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by smac999 View Post
I've also used a telescoping magnet tool for picking up stuff which I keep in my tool kit. though less usefull on a boat with stainless everything.
Yep, I have the same and will be taking along with me at the next trouble shooting trip to the boat (it is on a mooring).
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Old 15-11-2020, 14:34   #17
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

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Originally Posted by CarlF View Post
I've had a 612 and a 614 fail over the years. Similar symptoms to what you report. No amount of fiddling brought them back to life.

I now carry a spare. Takes only a few minutes to swap it in.

Have you done the troubleshooting process that starts on page 17 of the manual?

https://www.balmar.net/wp-content/up...ion-Manual.pdf
Yes!

I guess I was hoping that I had missed something or there was was an 'insiders' secret trick but I suspect the failure is terminal (no pun intended).

I will suggest to the owner that he gets a new unit and if by some magic, we get the old one working again, he will have a spare.
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Old 15-11-2020, 14:44   #18
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

Can you find another boat with a 614, then swap regulators temporarily. That will enable you to pin point the problem. I did that when I had the same problem, and it indicated a wiring harness problem which was easily repaired. Tests with a multimeter had not shown up the problem, a corroded wire splice.
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Old 15-11-2020, 15:14   #19
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

If you have had a fault it will be displayed as an error code in the long display mode. I found that a fault can disable the regulator, and my recollection is you need to reset the regulator by switching from short display to long display and back again (or vica versa). This clears the fault error code, and bingo, regulator comes back to life.
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Old 15-11-2020, 15:34   #20
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

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Originally Posted by Mirabooka View Post
If you have had a fault it will be displayed as an error code in the long display mode. I found that a fault can disable the regulator, and my recollection is you need to reset the regulator by switching from short display to long display and back again (or vica versa). This clears the fault error code, and bingo, regulator comes back to life.
Excellent information - thank you!

I will certainly try this. It may not rectify the problem but this is type of information I am seeking. Stuff that isn't in the install / operation manual and outside of conventional trouble shooting methods but nevertheless could be relevant.
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Old 15-11-2020, 16:23   #21
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

If the sensors display correctly in is 99% chance it is the regulator. i have an old one than always thought the alternator was hot (no sensor installed). You cant really do anything if one goes crazy.
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Old 18-11-2020, 05:47   #22
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

Update - the regulator was removed from the boat today and I set it up on the bench, ran though all the programming, changed display from short to long etc etc etc.

It is cactus, terminal, dead, unserviceable, stuffed and in general - it no work. All the display functions appear normal and the programming changes seem to work but the field volts remain at zero.

New unit is on the way and I will check / programme it on the bench before fitting to the boat.
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Old 18-11-2020, 10:06   #23
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

You might have some fun de-potting the circuit board (Google for how-to) and see if you can find what failed. I had a regulator that failed when the potting compound failed to adhere to the metal heat sink allowing water to reach the edge of the board and do a little corrosion damage.
The damage was at the lower right corner.

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Old 18-11-2020, 15:29   #24
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

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Originally Posted by wsmurdoch View Post
You might have some fun de-potting the circuit board (Google for how-to) and see if you can find what failed. I had a regulator that failed when the potting compound failed to adhere to the metal heat sink allowing water to reach the edge of the board and do a little corrosion damage.
The damage was at the lower right corner.

Bill
Well I'm impressed with your de-potting skills .

I have never had much success with de-potting even with the help of google but your example may drive me to try harder.

Would you care to share what basic process you used for the Balmar PCB in the picture?

I have a suitable board to experiment on now
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Old 18-11-2020, 17:45   #25
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

Google gives several methods, and I assume some work with some compounds and others work with other compounds. In my case with the regulator in a vise, I gently and slowly warmed the compound with a heat gun until it became soft and leather-like then tore it away in maybe 1/2" chunks with needle nose pliers, a dental pick, or a flat blade screwdriver. Most of it came away without a problem, but where a component was on legs above the board, I had difficulty, and I damaged a few. But, that did not matter much because I was not trying to recover and repair the board. I just wanted to see what happened. I did not find burned components, bad solder joints, or bad traces. I found corrosion.

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Old 18-11-2020, 20:48   #26
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

^^ Thanks Bill, if I decide to look under the potting I will report back.
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Old 19-11-2020, 01:38   #27
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

I reset my regulator with a normal 'name tag' magnet that one can get anywhere. It is the backing magnet for name tags that some people wear, From a signage shop.
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Old 29-11-2020, 17:12   #28
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

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Originally Posted by Wotname View Post
^^ Thanks Bill, if I decide to look under the potting I will report back.
I've always enjoyed figuring out what broke and why. On the same boat, the Balmar alternator temperature sensor failed. Guessing that the sensor was a standard thermistor that I could buy for $0.10, I called Balmar only to be told that the sensor was a special "active device". I took the thing apart almost expecting to find a smallish Cray computer. The "active device" seemed to be a Texas Instruments LM235LH. The failure was due to a bad (cold) solder joint. No point in bitching, I just bought a new one from Balmar.


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Old 29-11-2020, 19:53   #29
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Re: Balmar MC-614 Regulator Failure - Software Reset????

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Originally Posted by wsmurdoch View Post
I've always enjoyed figuring out what broke and why. On the same boat, the Balmar alternator temperature sensor failed. Guessing that the sensor was a standard thermistor that I could buy for $0.10, I called Balmar only to be told that the sensor was a special "active device". I took the thing apart almost expecting to find a smallish Cray computer. The "active device" seemed to be a Texas Instruments LM235LH. The failure was due to a bad (cold) solder joint. No point in bitching, I just bought a new one from Balmar.


Bill
I hear you!

While I haven't de-potted the old regulator yet, the new one has arrived, been programmed and fitted. It all works well.

However as it my want, I thought I might as well 'improve' the cooling aspects even though the regulator is already fitted in a cool location i.e. not in the engine room.

Knocked up a aluminium mounting base from some scrap and fitted the new regulator to this base.

This is mounted vertically in a "portrait" format.
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