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Thread: For those under 50...

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis Alwon View Post
    What did you take it from?
    It came out of a church built about 1963. Sanctuary lighting dimmer. Ward Leonard Radiastat Dimmer. Motor driven rotary autotransformer. 55 amps per pole incandescent @120v. We replaced all lamps with LED a couple years ago and finally got the okay to remove this.

    35A/pole for other loads, although IDK what other loads that would be.

    Is there any value or use for these now? Other than boat anchor or scrap pile.
    Tom
    TBLO

  2. #22
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    Apr 2008
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    Ann Arbor, Michigan
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    180316-1317 EDT

    ptonsparky:

    Circa 1958 I did some work for a family friend. He had a main business as a manufacturers rep of electrical components. He also had some partners in a business making dimmers. This predates SCRs.

    His dimmers were based on a special Superior Electric Powerstat, nonlinear winding for incandescent dimming. He added a Slow-Syn motor for remote control, and had me design a control circuit for this.

    I don't know what a Ward Leonard Radiastat is. If a variable autotransformer, then use as a dimmer, or with added circuitry for a constant voltage supply to the shop.

    A variable autotransformer (Variac) is a better dimmer because there is no RFI.

    .

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptonsparky View Post
    Two of the over 50 crowd knows what is. They used slightly different names. I had to research it.
    So, who was the other ?

    Powerstat (Superior), Radiastat (WL), Variac (generic) etc. Those were common for auditorium lighting control in the late 1950's and into the early 1970's. Often motor operated, sometimes with a bypass contactor to take the lights up full in an emergency.
    Last edited by zbang; 03-16-18 at 03:59 PM.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by macmikeman View Post
    Whatever it is , it sure is located in a dark place......




    I see what looks like the interior of a safety switch in the first picture. I won't even bother to stare at the second one for more than a second. You need a better camera.
    Had your eyes checked lately? All that sunshine down there has probably been detrimental to your vision.
    Tom
    TBLO

  5. #25
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    I thought I was looking at large wire wound pots when I first saw it. Had to do some reading.

    OT. I was pouring concrete and being a 16 year old mortar forker back when this and a neighboring church were built.
    Tom
    TBLO

  6. #26
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    Mar 2016
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    Quote Originally Posted by macmikeman View Post
    ... You need a better camera.
    I have to agree. I've used motor-driven autotransformers but couldn't recognize it from the pictures. I got as far as the motor & gearbox and thought it might be a traffic-light controller with cam switches, but three circuits didn't seem like enough.

  7. #27
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    Variac was originally a trademark name created and owned by General Radio. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Radio . This does not say whether a variable autotransformer of the type created by General Radio existed previously.

    Also see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autotransformer .

    Sometime after the middle of the 20th Century General Radio became less of an equipment source for me. I have their LRC bridge, multi decade resistor box, potentiometer box, and various standard capacitors. I probably bought more HP stuff than any other instrument source. But I have not found HP to have stood up as well as it should have.

    Few people know that Variac is a trademarked name and still is.

    .

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by zbang View Post
    So, who was the other ?

    ... Variac (generic) etc.

    "Close, but no cigar." (TM).
    Variac(R) started out as and still is a registered trademark, currently owned by ISE. It is only generic in the sense that Kleenex(R) is generic for facial tissue.
    see http://www.variac.com/staco_Variable...YaAjvwEALw_wcB

    BTW, I thought it looked like a variable autotransformer, but I am 72, so I did not reply. Did not know what it was used for though, just that it was motorized for remote control.

    Our much smaller church had 40 year old dimmable flluorescent fixtures with a separate constant voltage feed to the filaments. Wall box mounted Variacs (R) with a microswitch at the low end of travel to turn power off completely.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptonsparky View Post
    Had your eyes checked lately? All that sunshine down there has probably been detrimental to your vision.
    That and the two retina tears.
    85deg. an Sunny today.

  10. #30
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    Never saw anything like that before. Still see Variacs mounted in wall boxes with a knob, probably still popular in recording studios. Then there were Variacs directly coupled to a Slo-Syn stepper motor for remote control. That's about it.

    -Hal

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