slightly OT vacuum repair success

Hey, it's a home appliance, so it's almost home repair. Anyway I've fixed my girlfriend's aging vacuum three times in three years, and keep encouraging her to buy a new one.
This weekend's episode concerned the motor that drives the brush. A little VOM work confirmed voltage was reaching the motor leads, confirming switch and wiring integrity. As a double-check I cut and stripped the wires and got out the suicide cord. No sign of motor life.
She went on the internet and started pulling up prices in the $120 range for a new motor. Sheesh. I'm in the wrong business.
So I took the motor apart. A quick ohmmeter check showed the field winding to be open, but I sure didn't see any damage to it that would account for it being open. I decided to take a look at the crimped splices that connect the magnet wire to the leads, and my surgery revealed a little thermal fuse. The fuse tested open, the field winding tested continuous.
Maybe I shot myself in the foot, because now I'm stuck maintaining the damn thing for a while longer. But anyway, $1.69 plus tax at Radio Shack, and an hour's work is all it took to restore the thing to relatively good health.
I love simple stuff. I'm glad I have the experience to troubleshoot simple stuff and the tools and the time to fix simple stuff.
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May seem like a small thing but one senses the pride of an achievement. And that's what do it your self is all about. Well done. As long as a repair is safe; and in addition to saving the cost of a new vacuum, not helping fill up the landfill with the existing one and having the satisfaction of returning something to service.
Our vacuum is well over 40 years old and we even have a spare motor which we will probably never use!
But also importantly demonstrating that make-do and ability to cope attitude often missing in our high expectation throw-away society.
Keep at it and you will live more cheaply, will have greater confidence and ability to cope with life etc.
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On Tue, 03 Nov 2009 07:36:33 -0800, Smitty Two wrote:

Was that seriously for the fuse? I didn't think RatShack sold anything remotely *useful* these days.

Amen to that. I like my gadgets simple and well-built, not all this plastic-fantastic micro-controlled crap that's floating around these days.
Now, where'd I put my steam-powered computer and modem... ;)
cheers
Jules
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On Tue, 03 Nov 2009 14:25:57 -0600, Jules

One of my local Radio Shack not only has a crapload of *useful* stuff, they also have a guy who works there who knows how to use it--- and can explain it in English to a slacker like myself.
Jim [and just in case corporate bots usenet- it is store #01-1332 in Niskayuna, NY]
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On Tue, 03 Nov 2009 17:14:43 -0500, Jim Elbrecht wrote:

Interesting - I thought all the better ones had long-gone (20 years or more ago) and they just did gadgets and gimmicks these days. Nice to know there's still at least one good one about.
My local one's crap, but thankfully Digikey aren't too far away and within driving distance if it were a real emergency.
cheers
J.
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Gotta remember that one. Can I use it? Nevermind, I'm going to. You ought to be used to being screwed on the Internet by now.
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and stupidity are winning.
I'm surprised you were able to discern that he has a mind!
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I'll echo the others with "good job" Also, I don't see how any discussion about vacs could even remotely be considered OT --that's what this group is here for. Larry
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Gee, I just went through a vacuum cleaner repair saga, and didn't even call on the newsgroup. But then, I'm smarter than the average rabbit. I haven't been following the thread. Some snob doesn't like writing in for advice on repairing a home item as common as a vacuum cleaner?
Steve
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Very un-American of you. The proper thing to do is toss it in the trash and buy a new vacuum cleaner made in China. That is what 99.9% of Americans would have done.
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Here's one religious guy who still repairs things.
--
Christopher A. Young
Learn more about Jesus
  Click to see the full signature.
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On Tue, 03 Nov 2009 19:42:27 -0800, hr(bob) snipped-for-privacy@att.net wrote:

Old phone stuff's just awesome like that. One of my phones is over 60 years old and as of two years ago was still working happily hooked up to the UK network (it's been in storage since then - I'll get it shipped over to the US at some point, but I'm not sure if I stand a chance of it working on the US network)
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On Wed, 04 Nov 2009 10:06:47 -0500, Tony wrote:

Depends where you are, but your local freecycle list might be worth a try. There's nothing on the one where I am now, but where I used to live it was full of PCs that were only a couple of years old; there were a lot of tech companies in that area and they used to upgrade really often and didn't know what to do with the stuff they got rid of.
I think my personal favourite was an old audio card I had (back in the days where you never saw a motherboard with audio built-in) - it had belonged to a friend and fell partway out of the motherboard slot and shorted out against the case, burning out quite a few of the PCB tracks before the machine's PSU gave out. Amazingly it didn't kill any of the ICs though, so after rewiring around the damage it was up and running again... I think it cost me a beer, and audio cards were expensive back then.

I suspect you mean those little typewriter-like things, but I had an old Diamond D5 from the late '70s - box about 16"x24"x36" with twin 8" floppy drives, a monitor that wasn't much smaller, and a big ol' daisywheel printer. It was a real beast :-)
cheers
Jules
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