• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
  • Mike Haasl
  • James Freyr
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Burra Maluca
garden masters:
  • Steve Thorn
  • Greg Martin
gardeners:
  • Kate Downham
  • Jay Angler
  • thomas rubino

Harris Hydro Cast Stainless steel pelton wheel

 
gardener
Posts: 2775
Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
491
cat pig rocket stoves
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Replaced my pelton wheel today.  This is my third wheel since installing my hydro system in 1996.  I was changing out the lower bearing recently and noticed just how badly worn my wheel was. I have a high head system with 130 psi at the house, lots of grit at high velocity has worn many nozzles larger than my low flow system can handle. It also apparently has worn out two cast silicon bronze pelton wheels. When I saw how worn my wheel was, I went and checked my original wheel and sure enough it was was in better shape than the replacement wheel! Talk about getting my moneys worth. I installed the the original and gained an amp !  I then went on line to see how much a new wheel was costing these days. What I found pleased me to no end !  Denis at LOPOWER ENGINEERING had made cast stainless wheels just for high pressure gritty systems !!! just what I needed ! Not cheep at  $432 delivered. A bronze one would have been about $330 ! But for an extra 100 bucks I went for it. Glad I did ! Nice heavy thick casting looks like it will last + 20 years ! After installing today and turning it on I gained two more amps than the original was getting me , three more than before changing out the lower bearing !!!   Always a good idea to see what might be available since the last time you looked. Glad I did !
DSCN1031.JPG
[Thumbnail for DSCN1031.JPG]
all three wheels
DSCN1032.JPG
[Thumbnail for DSCN1032.JPG]
2nd wheel ,badly worn
DSCN1036.JPG
[Thumbnail for DSCN1036.JPG]
stainless wheel in place !
 
thomas rubino
gardener
Posts: 2775
Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
491
cat pig rocket stoves
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Just an update;  One year later and the stainless wheel looks as good as new!  It is performing beyond all expectations !
If you have high pressure water with micro grit then this is the only wheel to buy for your Harris hydro.  
My camera is currently on the fritz or I would include a new picture.
 
Posts: 3
1
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi there, I was searching the internet and I hope you may be able to offer a hint at what we have done wrong with our Harris.

We just replaced the pelton wheel, but something isn't right. We turn the water on and it starts at a high level, but then drops off steadily till it's a steady but low 15a, where with our old and worn pelton (as in your pictures) we were still getting a steady 19a.

Is there something simple we cocked up?

Thanks!

My email is joshuaablez@gmail.com
 
thomas rubino
gardener
Posts: 2775
Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
491
cat pig rocket stoves
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Josh;   Welcome to Permies!

My best guess ,it sounds like somehow, you got the wheel misaligned.   I'll assume you carefully switched any washers and spacers over from old wheel to this one. And changed nothing else.  
When I replaced the old brass wheel on mine , I did change up where the  spacers were. Getting a better alingment.
If this a permanent magnet alt., could your adjustments have been loose and changed ?
And then the question of supply. Did something partially block your line while it was turned off ?
Blowing mine out backwards is a yearly thing.
Hope this helps you. Let us know what it takes to get it up and working again.


 
Joshua Able
Posts: 3
1
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks, Thomas.  This forum looks to contain lots of great information on many topics.

You may be onto something re the positioning of the new stainless Pelton wheel.  I has, as you know, a longer "neck" that threads onto the shaft than did the old bronze wheels.  Thus the spacers have to be changed somewhat.  I followed Denis Ledbetter's instructions as best I could and it looked like the nozzles (2) were aligned well with the notch on the Pelton's cups.  I don't know how critical this is, however, and I suppose it could be a little bit off.  Do you recall the size and order of the spacers and washer between the wheel and the turbine housing that you used and which obviously works?

Mine is a permanent magnet alternator.  Nothing was loose, but I have played around with the field strength adjustment, trying to locate the "sweet spot".  Apparently I have found it.  Still, the system is not putting out nearly what it should.  When first turned on, it will jump up to as high as 35 amps, but settles back to about 26-27, but that is only an amp or two better than what I was getting with the old wheel that was FAR more worn than the one you pictured.  When this system is working optimally, it should output between 30-35 amps continuously.

I am pretty sure that there is no problem with the water.

Thanks for any additional wisdom you may have, especially re the spacers and alignment of the wheel.

Josh
 
thomas rubino
gardener
Posts: 2775
Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
491
cat pig rocket stoves
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Josh;
 Please give us some spec's on your system. How long has it been up and running ?  How long has it been yours ?
I know its a 2 nozzle unit. How large are your jets ?   How much flow are you running ? What kind of pressure?
How are you dealing with your waste water ?
How large is your battery bank?   What brand/size constant diversion charge control are using?
Are you sure, its not your battery voltage being high that is knocking back your amperage output ?  
 
Joshua Able
Posts: 3
1
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
1) The system has been working for nearly 16 years.  I installed it new.

2) The jets are 1/2" diameter opening.

3) Typically about 60-70 gpm.

4) Ca. 100 ft. head, pressure ca. 60 psi.

5) Flows back into stream from which withdrawn.

6) Twelve batteries.

7) Trace C40 charge controller, heating coil diversion load.

 I am measuring turbine output right at the alternator.  It should not be influenced by battery voltage.
 
thomas rubino
gardener
Posts: 2775
Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
491
cat pig rocket stoves
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hey Josh;  Awesome system you have there!
In answer to your question about the order of spacers under the wheel. Without taking it off,  I do not remember.  They call it C.R.S. disease... can't remember ... ?
I like all your answers rite up till the last statement.  
I disagree about reading amperage at the alternator being different than at the batterys. Not counting line loss, amperage should remain constant.  Only changing as the charge control starts diverting to maintain voltage.

After 16 years you know your system.
 
Posts: 2
Location: Agness, Oregon
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
We have a Harris Wheel system with a permanent magnet alternator, it's been in service about 12 years.   Decided to replace the wheel as it's worn pretty good but its corroded up down inside where there's an allen drive screw and I'm thinking I won't be able to get a wrench to hold it.   The wheel is bronze but it looks like the allen drive screw is steel and the dissimilar metals look like they acted on each other pretty bad.    I can't find anything that shows how the wheel attaches to the alternator spindle, do you know of anything that's available to help with the replacement process?     Much appreciate any assistance you can provide.
 
thomas rubino
gardener
Posts: 2775
Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
491
cat pig rocket stoves
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Bo;   Its not as bad as it looks. The alternator has a male threaded shaft. The allen head you see is the shaft itself , not a separate screw/bolt.  
The allen head is to keep the alternator from turning.  The pelton wheel itself spins off from the threaded shaft.  As you look at it, its standard thread.  Counterclockwise to loosen.

The stainless pelton wheel is worth every extra dollar! Mine is still not showing any wear at all. Be sure to use anti sieze on the shaft when you install your new wheel.
 
Bo Shindler
Posts: 2
Location: Agness, Oregon
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Thomas,

Thank you for prompt response, I was hoping that was the situation and will take a fly at it tomorrow to see if I can get it to come off.  

I have a bronze replacement, the other one lasted about 12 years, so I thought I'd be better served by using what I have.   I'm intrigued by the stainless wheel, I'm assuming that it is cast in one piece using a lost wax or foam based pattern which gives it better quality and is better balanced than the sand cast bronze one where it looks like the cups are welded to the hub.  

We can only run the wheel from around the end of Thanksgiving until the first part of July, when it's in service we can easily top it out at over 30 amps but that would be a waste so we normally run it just below 20 amps or even lower if the weather is nice.  In the spring time we have more power than we know what to do with.    We also have about 2800 watts of solar, plus an 8kw generator that we set on auto-start to where it might run a couple of times a week for 2-3 hours each time during the summer when we barely have enough water to take care of irrigation, domestic, and fire protection.
 
Oh sure, it's a tiny ad, but under the right circumstances, it gets bigger.
2020 Permaculture Design Course for Scientists and Engineers, June 14-27
https://permies.com/wiki/permaculture-design-course-2020
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!