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Strombecker (Japan) 16D


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#1 havlicek

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Posted 14 January 2017 - 06:19 PM

I don't think I've ever done one of these before... I've given them away, and taken parts from them, but I figured now was the time to try something different.  

 

These motors (I think made by Igarashi, but the experts can fill in that blank) have a lot going for them, and some things not so much. For one, the chrome plating on the thin can metal is hard as heck, besides nice and shiny. Drilling holes in the stuff is noticeably more difficult than other typical cans. The endbell is made out of an actual honest to goodness fairly suitable material. Big news is that the magnets are significantly stronger than the Mabuchis, even though they at least "look" like they're made from a similar material.  The Mabuchis read around 670-680 on my meter, the Strombeckers measure 820, and that's a big jump, if not quite into "Arco territory."

I stripped the motor, and it was clear it had been rewound, even though it ran a little rough, but pretty well. Kudos to whoever did the job. I then removed the magnets that are held in by a weird sort of round clip. After cleaning everything out, I soldered a bearing into the can after removing the bushing and reaming out the bushing hole. Since a big problem with these (as with the Mabuchis) is the sloppy tolerances/play between the bushings and arm shaft, I then carefully removed the endbell bushing, reamed out that hole, and epoxied a bearing into that end as well. I figure, the old girl oughta get some respect!

IMG_1925_zps2bnn3ci5.jpg
 
Here's a shot of the inside, with the bearing installed and those neat-o magnets. The "ring" pressed into the can makes reinforcing the inside with nuts or whatnot a problem, so I just drilled some extra mounting holes. The two holes in the endbell were there already; I don't know if they're stock or not.

IMG_1926_zpsxehjytjm.jpg
 
The resulting hole is around .525", nice and tight. So, I wound me up a 65t/30 on a .460" long by .518" (final OD around .515") stack using a Tradeship commutator. Again, the ones I have now all have the "built-in" CW advance, so timing them CCW puts the tabs in a difficult position for winding. I still advanced the timing a bit more than usual here (around 15 degrees CCW), because I have a good relationship with the "armature-winder" and didn't think he'd mind too much.   ;)

IMG_1924_zps6litr7ml.jpg
 
One of the bad things about these motors is the brush and spring arrangement. You need to be really careful removing the spring retainers, because the springs will go flying into the netherlands where odd socks and other irretrievables go... never to be found again. To make things even worse (!), reinstalling everything is about as finicky as you could possibly imagine. Then, to make things even worserestest, I figured out how to reinstall the springs, brushes and retrainers but discovered that the can screws I installed prevented the retainers from fully seating.  :dash2:  See, I drilled the holes as far north as I could so they wouldn't interfere with chassis rails, but that had the end of the very short screws sticking out into the track the retainers ride in. That meant nibbling-away at the retainers so they wouldn't contact the screws, which would have also created a dead short.

So, after all that, I got the assembly done and this is one sweet motor. It's super smooth, and gets up to some impressively high RPM, while drawing relatively little current. 65t/30 is a great wind for the old motors, for this Strombecker with its bearings and strong magnets, it's a humdinger. You won't see many rewound versions of these with bearings on both ends, and with good reason (whew!), but there's plenty of potential in them if you can get past the "issues"!   :D 

IMG_1927_zpsiusdcqii.jpg

IMG_1928_zpsk9uxebqm.jpg

IMG_1929_zpscmb93duw.jpg
 
-john


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#2 Kim Lander

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Posted 14 January 2017 - 08:35 PM

John,

 

I loved those motors, used to take the magnets and adapt them to the newer motors because, as you said, they are strong.

 

The biggest problem I had was finding new brushes for them. If you remember, you refurbed one of these little gems for me some time ago.

 

Love your work...

 

Kim



#3 havlicek

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Posted 15 January 2017 - 06:56 AM

Hi Kim,
 
They are cool motors, and I don't see them often at all. I don't remember yours in particular, but I imagine the brushes and springs are difficult to come by.

On this one, I could have chosen the easy way out and just used a Mabuchi end bell (as I'm sure some folks probably did in the 1960s),  but I wanted to keep the motor as original as possible.
 
Looking at Steve Okeefe's excellent  "Can Spotter's Guide," it seems as though this was an early 1966 Igarashi. Surprising that there were such good magnets in a slot car motor, and people still used Mabuchis. Makes me think at least some people must have either used these magnets in their Mabuchi motors, or done the end bell swap.

Igarashi (small) Spotter's Guide
 
-john


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#4 Steve Okeefe

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Posted 15 January 2017 - 08:32 PM

Kim is right! Hemi magnets were on average somewhat stronger than other magnets of their time (and thus it was a "speed secret" to use them in motor building).

 

There is however, a "catch." The catch is that Hemi magnets (like French/Tradeship, 1968 Mabuchi, and a few others) are anisotropic. Simply put, that means they are manufactured with a magnetic "grain." They remain strong under almost any conditions, but cannot be refreshed or reversed by zapping; in fact any attempt to zap them is likely to actually reduce their gauss reading!

 

There is another feature you have probably already noticed; Hemi magnets are thicker (by 15 to 20 thou) than Champion Arcos, Mura Magnums, and modern Parma EXPs. Even without shims, the "hole" is going to be smaller.


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#5 tonyp

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 09:09 AM

The Hemis had a good blank. Bob Kean used to use them a lot.


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#6 havlicek

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 07:21 PM

Hmmm... I gotta start saving them, Tony. I mean, if it was good enough for him, it oughta be more than good enough for me!

 

-john


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