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#32454 - 12/23/03 10:01 PM Neon signs  
Attic Rat  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
..Anyone here versed in the ways of neon???I had a troubleshooting job today, and,the sign has 16 letters,all individual, and powered by (3)15kv.,.30ma,120v. xfrmrs...The letters are mounted to the building exterior on VINYL SIDING..when I went to check them today,I didn't get nailed..lucky me..I was on a fiber-glass ladder,but I saw a small arc when I removed the letter lens..there was also alot of buzzing...The owners complaint is that at night, the 1st 6 letters are significantly darker than the rest...My question is this,should I ground these letters and replace the ballast, or ...??? Help!!!


.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#32455 - 12/23/03 10:18 PM Re: Neon signs  
iwire  Offline
Moderator
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
North Attleboro, MA USA


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

#32456 - 12/23/03 10:36 PM Re: Neon signs  
Attic Rat  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
Thanx so much Iwire!!! I appreciate the links.. [Linked Image] [Linked Image]


.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

#32457 - 12/23/03 10:48 PM Re: Neon signs  
iwire  Offline
Moderator
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
North Attleboro, MA USA
AR I was in the same position last spring, I was sent to work with some Neon and did not know much about it.

I did what you did, I asked here and was directed to the web sites I gave you.

If you need more do a Google search for Neon trouble shooting.


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

#32458 - 12/23/03 10:51 PM Re: Neon signs  
Attic Rat  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
..Thanx bro,..thats why I love this place...people really give a hoot!!! [Linked Image] [Linked Image] [Linked Image] [Linked Image]



[This message has been edited by Webmaster (edited 12-23-2003).]


.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

#32459 - 12/24/03 07:18 AM Re: Neon signs  
:andy:  Offline
Member
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 289
Germany
buzzing and arcing sounds like a ground fault. did you check for wet spots at the electrode connections (turn sigh off before!!), or perhaps a GTO wire was cut by a metal letter...
try to locate the sound with not touching anything. i already had to experience how 4kV feel... now i'm more careful


#32460 - 12/24/03 07:41 AM Re: Neon signs  
Trumpy  Offline


Member
Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 8,211
SI,New Zealand
AR,
I've done a wee bit of work with Neon signage.
How old is the sign in question?.
There are a number of things that could be causing the last letters to dim.
Firstly, a lower voltage output from the Secondary side of the transformer(s) feeding the letters, will cause the light output to drop.
A poor grounding connection on one side of the Secondary winding will have the same effect.
Are the transformers centre-tapped?, if so, check these connections too, there should be a good ground connection at these points.
The reason I ask about the age of the sign, is because, the last letters may be the original parts, where the other letters may have been replaced earlier on in the sign's life.
Neon signs usually have some form of a Phosphor coating on the inside of the glass(not unlike a Fluorescent tube), as this coating "wears out" the tubing gets dimmer, but this usually takes years.
I would say that you probably have a bad connection somewhere in the system.
Hope this helps!. [Linked Image]


Let's face it, these days if you're not young, you're old - Red Green grin

#32461 - 12/24/03 09:18 AM Re: Neon signs  
Sandro  Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 444
Stoney Creek, ON, Canada
Excellent reference websites. I come across my fair share of sign repair, but I have limited experience with neon. Thanks Iwire.

Sandro.



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