Did lightning fry my relay?

gizz

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I put a cam out about 2 weeks ago and went to check it last evening. This cam is the OWL/PF/Date, MS20 with the 275-005a RS relay, no timer, and 12volt gel 1.2 amp batt. We had a series of unusually heavy thunderstorms with an extreme amount of lighting pass through the first week. When I got there the cam looked fine (no moisture) and the led was off and i had no pics. I shut the camera switch off and waived my hand in front, the LED came on as it should but then it wouldn't reset. Just kept turning on/off,on/off, etc. I took the cam home and the batt still had 12.5 volts. I replaced the relay and all seems fine now. Just wondering if maybe the lightning fried it or simply just was a bad relay.
 



Billy in VA

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If lighting had hit close enought to fry the relay, I am sure it would have done the same to the PIR and the Cam.  My guess is it was just a bad relay or maybe a cold solder joint.  I am sure there is more out there that are better at this stuff then I and they may let you know what they think.  Later  Billy
 

Archilochus

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Hi gizz,
The 275-005 is a 7-9 volt rated relay. A fully charged 12V lead-acid batt can actually be as high as 13-14V - almost 60% over-rating!  RS tends to sell marginal quality comonents and these relays prob have a max of ~50% over-voltage.  I'm guessing that the 12 volt batt killed it. I'd agree with Billy in VA that if lightning toatsed the relay, lots more would have been cooked too!

Archilochus
 

Tinhorn

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Naaahhh!

You WORE it out taking all those Bear/Deer pix's

Tinhorn
 

gizz

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Arch, Billy - I agree with you guys 100%. Thing is i've been using this relay with the 12v batt's since i've started building these (10 of them now) and this is the first one. But like you said the stuff is marginal at best and maybe I'm right on the edge with the 9v relay's and 12v batt's. BTW, the batt's i'm using seem to peak at about 12.94 volts. I'm slowly gonna switch to the Lamson/GE 9v pir as I go forward.
Anyways, i replaced the relay with another 9v so hopefully this one will last a little longer. I've had ok luck with the other's. I have 6 cam's out right now so i sure as heck hope they're not all "blinking LED's" when i go get them.

Tinhorn - This is a new cam (no pics yet) although it's built the same as the other's. Hope it can perform the same magic!!

(Edited by gizz at 5:45 pm on Aug. 24, 2001)
 

spectr17

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I've had 1 relay go bad in the pat year. Of course it was high on a mountain and didn't have a spare camera with me to swap out the cam.

We get lightnig strikes at our mountain top radio sites a lot. I've opened more than one vaporized telephone or radio box. Usually everything is black and carbonized. Lots of molten metal. Lightning is very unforgiving. The antennas we use are 20 foot high and the lightning puts a black streak down the outside fiberglass shell. The metal rods inside the antenna case are usually unsoldered and show bad arcing and pitting.

 


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