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View Full Version : Red Dragon 1000 not working properly


jpitch
07/11/2017, 03:07 PM
I've had this Alpha 170 for a few years, the past almost 2 years in storage due to a divorce. When I set up my new system in April things were perfect. 2 weeks ago the RD1000 stopped working. I've had a handful of stoppages over the years and chalked it up to buildups. I thoroughly cleaned it and ran it under the faucet and it worked fine. However, when I connected it back up to the skimmer it looked like it was struggling to start. I pulled it apart and reassembled it and I now notice it feels like it's loose inside. Is there a way to ship it for service?

slief
07/11/2017, 03:55 PM
Chances are you still have some buildup in the magnet cavity or between the bearing and the end of the impeller shaft below the magnet that is causing the impeller to freeze up. That or the bearing is stuck to the impeller shaft. If your pump was not taken apart, cleaned and rinsed before you stored it, this is very likely. If that happened, when you put the impeller back in, the bearing wouldn't have seated properly into the bearing cavity which would give you the perception of things being loose. That said, the impeller floats in the cavity so there is supposed to be some play.

Take your pump apart. Remove the impeller, remove the bearing. Pull any o-rings off and set them aside. This includes the o-ring on the bearing. Check the impeller to make sure the magnet is firmly affixed to the impeller shaft. It's bonded into place. If it came loose, that will be a problem but it's not common.

Place all parts in pure household vinegar for 10 minutes. The scrub the impeller and pump with a soft dish brush. Use a toothbrush to clean inside the magnet cavity. Check the hole in the bearing and make sure it's clean too. Once you are done, rinse all parts. Install the bearing back into the block making sure to put in back in the way it came out. There is a top side and a bottom side so pay attention to that when you remove the bearing from the magnet cavity. A 6" piece of 1/2" PVC is helpful when installing the bearing back into the cavity.

See post 2 of this thread for more info on bearing removal and installation. This also discusses routine maintenance on these pumps.
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2573406

If that doesn't solve your issue, then you will need a new motorblock. We stock them at our Florida warehouse. This is the motorblock you will need.
http://royalexclusiv.com/Spare-Parts/Mini-Red-Dragon-Red-Dragon-1-BK/motor-blocks/part-motor-block-for-Bubble-King-Double-Cone-130-250::123.html

jpitch
07/11/2017, 04:43 PM
Before I order a new motor block I have a question or two. I closely inspected the interior of the motor block where the impeller shaft sits and it loots spotless. When I reassemble the pump and turn it on it sounds great but the second I touch the impeller it feels like it unseats itself and starts clattering. Is this a motor block issue?

jpitch
07/11/2017, 04:59 PM
*sigh* And it appears the motor block is not in stock?

slief
07/11/2017, 05:07 PM
Before I order a new motor block I have a question or two. I closely inspected the interior of the motor block where the impeller shaft sits and it loots spotless. When I reassemble the pump and turn it on it sounds great but the second I touch the impeller it feels like it unseats itself and starts clattering. Is this a motor block issue?

The chatter could be because there is friction between the bearing and the impeller. If there is friction, the motor will start and stop and can exhibit chattering like behavior. Once thing you don't want to do is run the motor dry. That can damage the block. That said, you really should remove the bearing as instructed above and inspect it too. That is a very critical part of the pump and if it's not installed properly or if it's got any kind of buildup in it, the pump will stall. Make sure the bearing is clean (remove it) and then reinstall it. Check to make sure the magnet is properly bonded to the shaft (I am pretty certain that it will be) and try firing it up again. If you didn't do the vinegar bath, you might as well try it as instructed above. Friction will cause the pump to stop and chatter. So will a dead block but lets rule out all possibilities before you spend money!

The website is likely incorrect as to our inventory. I think we should have some in stock. I am double checking but may not have an answer until first thing tomorrow. Once I get word back, I will let you know and we will update the website to reflect stock if we have them.

jpitch
07/11/2017, 05:12 PM
I appreciate the quick responses! I have cleaned ever single part on the pump. The impeller, shaft, magnet, bearing and interior of the motor block. Everything looks almost brand new. Before I stored the skimmer I soaked it in vinegar for a day and thoroughly cleaned everything.

I put the bearing on the impeller and spun it and it feels smooth. When everything is installed minus the outer housing it feels brand new when I hand spin it. I never run the pump out of water so there is no concern about it running it dry.

Thank you for double checking to see if the motor block is in stock. I look forward to your update. Excellent customer service!

slief
07/11/2017, 05:27 PM
I appreciate the quick responses! I have cleaned ever single part on the pump. The impeller, shaft, magnet, bearing and interior of the motor block. Everything looks almost brand new. Before I stored the skimmer I soaked it in vinegar for a day and thoroughly cleaned everything.

I put the bearing on the impeller and spun it and it feels smooth. When everything is installed minus the outer housing it feels brand new when I hand spin it. I never run the pump out of water so there is no concern about it running it dry.

Thank you for double checking to see if the motor block is in stock. I look forward to your update. Excellent customer service!

Glad to help. One bit of advice. Keep vinegar soaks short. I suggest no more than 10 minutes at a time. Vinegar is a very useful solution for cleaning our pumps but it's also used in the marine/boat hull building industry for cleaning epoxy. Most pumps including these use epoxy in the potting of the motor body both inside and out. Prolonged exposure to vinegar will soften the epoxy inside the pump and at the back outside of the pump which can not only damage the pump but also compromise the seal where the power cord goes into the block.

10 minute soaks are perfectly safe. Also, the vinegar will damage o-rings after prolonged exposure which is why I suggest removing o-rings before the soak.

I will let you know once I hear back from the warehouse as to whether we have them on hand. In the mean time, the only other thing I can suggest is to make sure the bearing is inserted properly and seated correctly into the block. If it's not seated properly then you could have issues. The piece of PVC pipe is a great tool for insterting and seating the bearing.

Stay tuned. I should have an update for you in the AM. In the meantime, I am going to send you a PM so you can send me an email.