View Full Version : G & W Viper Recloser
01-28-2008, 11:47 AM
A word of caution to those of you using this recloser. Seems as they had a design flaw in the early series. The bottom plate to the electronics in the recloser body itself was originally built with a ten (10) bolt seal on the bottom gasket. Turns out that doesn't seal it well enough if the recloser is used in a substation frame and is tilted. G&W now makes the seal with twenty-eight (28) bolts. We had one of the original style fill with two inches of water and short out the connector to the control. My problem is G & W never informed us of the problem till after we had an outage. NOW they are going to fix that recloser and the other three of the same vintage.
01-28-2008, 01:53 PM
My own preference for electronics enclosures in outdoor environments is to drill small drainage holes in the enclosure and use a vapour pad inside. The vapour pads are little plastic pots with an adhesive backing that you stick inside,peel off the foil lid and then shut the enclosure. The pad releases an "electronics safe" vapour that puts a protective layer on everything inside the enclosure.
The more waterproof you make an enclosure, the more likely it is to fill with water. And water gets in via the most devious means (including the inside of a cable.) They can put as many bolts as they like in that seal, but they'd better have a look at everything else that enters that enclosure including mechanisms. They should also consider the fact that even if the electronics themselves don't get hot, then a hot sunny day can still heat the air in the enclosure and cause a pressure differential that will force air out through even the tightest seal. When it cools down at night it'll suck air (and water) back in.
In my dark past I used to make lighting controllers for the ride industry. These systems were hot by their nature of switching high current loads with semiconductors, and thermal expansion and contraction of the air will always draw water in somehow. The ride controllers had the added burden of continuous vibration and often spending most of their life being rotated in random axis if they were on a moving part of the ride.
I learned a lot about arduous electronic environments! I had a reputation for producing the most reliable equipment in the industry.
01-28-2008, 02:08 PM
These reclosers include two small vents for hot or cold differentials with a small heater inside to keep it "non-condensing". The problem was it filled up with water to the level of the vent which put the ends of some boards and the connector plug under water. The connector plug shorted internally.
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