My clocks are gaining 2min/hr!

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Aloha! We had terrible floods and lost power for a few days last weekend. We finally got a generator after 2 days without power. Since we got power back via generator (which we are still running off of), my alarm clock and clock on the microwave have been gaining time.
My alarm clock is currently 13 minutes fast, and the microwave is 16 minutes fast. They seem to be picking up speed at about 2 minutes an hour. I adjusted them before I went to bed 9 hours ago and this is how off they are since then.
Why!! Someone suggested it could be due to the generator not running at true 60hz? Anyone have any ideas whats going on? Is it definitely a side effect from the generator they are using?
MAHALO BRIAN
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The electric company carefully monitors the 60hz and adjusts as needed. Your generator is close, but not as accurate. Once you get power back, everything should be OK.
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Check generator voltage, unregulated cheap units can run 100- 140v and 55-65Hz, 120v should be 60 hz. You are probably running high and can damage sensitive equipment like microwaves. Quality regulated gens are better, but yours may just be running faster than 3600 rpm. Use a voltmeter and adjust engine speed.
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When setting HZ and voltage on smaller gensets. Place an at least an 50% load then check voltage and HZ. Setting it at an idle is an sure way to have an higher than wanted voltage at load.
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You should not use anything with circuits till you sort this out
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Thanks for all the responses so quick! I live in a dorm here in beautiful Honolulu, and they have a fairly large generator to power our entire building. I have no control over the generator. Guess I just have to wait! I am using the cell phone and computer as they maintain accurate time.
Mahalo brian

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this is silly talk. anything with circuits? do you even know what a circuit is?
randy

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"xrongor" replied...

Those circuit people are a tricky bunch. I aint yet seen a single big top at anyone of those places, they fluff up the cotton candy with hot air and as soon as you pay for it it shrinks, and the fat lady never sings when the show is over.
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and
My daddy took me to the circuits. I was shocked at what I saw!
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On Fri, 5 Nov 2004 16:34:01 -0700, "xrongor"

There is even sillier talk. All appliance clocks have their own crystal based timer. Its just not worth making synchronous motor clocks to run off the 60Hz main power anymore. The original complaint about the clocks gaining time at different rates is nonsense.
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Xrongor, I have seen several people ruin thousands in electronic equipment because of improper gen out put. If you knew gen operation or even checked out new gens you would know this. One example is Coleman now clearly states on the boxes or in the manual of their units that their Unregulated gens need power a conditioner if equipment with circuits-sensitive equipment is to be used. They even supply a # that sells their aproved units. That is there under 900$ units. Separate power conditioners will cost 400- 800 for under 6000 watt units. Im sure they have been sued and lost and understand the liability. Another poster here witnessed apx 6 furnaces ruined because of generator operation. Unregulated cheap gens typicaly start at 135 - 140, 65-68Hz no load, and easily go to 100v or less 54-55Hz full load. Only one inexpensive home owner model the Honda EU series clearly states the EU will give power output equal to or better than grid power. With clean Sign Wave. Which is necessary to not shorten the life or blow many sensitive products. Remember 20 yrs ago few apliances had circuits, now most can come with circuits. In the cheap as can be generator marketing many units are only truely safe running saws and incandesant bulbs. I bought a new 5500 Generac and returned it within 20 days for a 7500 voltage regulated model, I could not get the correct voltage consistantly to start my furnace. The Hz was swinging to much. OP should simply ck voltage and HZ, if his power is out of safe limits damage may occur. But just simply adjusting motor rpm would likely fix this, as it is likely a 1200, 1800 or 3600 rpm unit and calibrated at specific rpms, adjustments are easy and designed for calibrating and monitoring. There are even Hondas with adjustments and a meter for this on the front panel. Being blind to a gens output can literaly ruin what you power. I plug in my Kill a Watt meter and monitor V - HZ and Watts when generating power. Motors do go out of calibration due to vibration.
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nothing personal, but its clear you dont know what a 'circuit' is. maybe you should go look that word up. the saws and incandescant bulbs are still circuits. since day one everything that runs on electricity needs to form a circuit. no circuit, no work can get done. its that simple.
based on what i think you mean to say, i agree, its probably best not to put modern microprocessor based stuff on horrible power.
randy

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Clearly what is commomly refered to as 'Circuit " , , is sensitive electronics with specificaly Computer Chips. Not a bulb or drill, but Circuits, as in computer circuits, I thought this was clear.
No offence given or taken . Thanks, Sorry...
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (m Ransley) says...

If you have sensitive equipment, it can easily be powered through a ferroresonant line stabilizer that can be purchased for a few bucks. I use one that was used in a commercial darkroom to stabilize light sources. I picked it up at auction for $20. There's no need to be concerned about generator output that goes to power water heaters or well pumps.
Most rotating field brushless generator designs (the cheapest and most common) put out a very nice sine wave. The voltage and frequency may vary, but equipment damage is unlikely.
--
http://home.teleport.com/~larryc

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Larry Caldwell wrote:

Hi, That stabilizer even has a limit. For accurate wall clock, I have one radio controlled wall clock and a wrist watch. Or computer time synch'd to time source. Tony
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Actually most appliance clock circuits still sync their timebase from the power source, and other digiatal alarm clocks that plug into AC power.
It is more costly to put the additional circuitry and components necessary to maintain an accurate enough time without syncing to the power grid.
Since the appliance is most likely required to be connected to power anyway, is much better to sync from the power source so that most of the clocks connected to the power grid are all in sync. This is why most cheap battery clocks and watches will lose a minute or so every month and some even cheaper models will lose much more. Some better ones can be very close.
The timebase oscillators even if using a phase circuit with a crystal would still not be that accurate if left to freerun without some sort of external sync. These cheaper circuits will vary their frequency with different temperature ranges also.
So even though electronics are more modern than their mechanical predecessors, Most still rely on the power grid to sync to.
MC
wrote:

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You must have missed the part where the OP said that grid power has *not* been restored, and his building is running on a generator. _Of_course_ that's why his clocks are drifting: the generator isn't putting out a perfect 60Hz wave.
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wrote:

Actually it is cheaper (and much more common) to just sync to the AC waveform.
Its just not worth making synchronous motor

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Yes its your generator doing it. If you want an accurate clock the Atomic digital battery clocks are great. Mine was $20 shows date, temp, moon phase and time via radio in sync with an atomic clock. Adjusts for daylight savings too.
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whoever suggested it, is probably right.
randy

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