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Question
I need brushes for an old Wagner electric motor. Do you know any place online to order replacements? Any part numbers or type to order?
ID plate has the following information:
Wagner Electric Corp.
Alt. Cur    Motor type  RA
Frame 203   Model  B55 M127
1 HP  1750 RPM  1 Phase  60 cycles
110 Volt  13.2 Amps   220 Volt 6.6 Amps
Cont.  Rating   40o C   No 2Z
Code G   Service factor 1.15 at rated volts and cycles

Answer
Don,

There is something special about your motor, it is a 203 frame built prior to 1952,  may have some collectible value, versus an everyday working motor,

Because most of the time,  the question needs much more information than a simple one line answer,  I try to provide all the information I can when I see the question and notice the subject compared to the data on the device, is something out of the ordinary,  

Because many are in a hurry or simply do not care about the information that would apply outside of the main question,  let me answer your questions first

,  and you can choose to take the few minutes to learn something or just deal with the question at hand,   

First,  You might be able to pick up a set of brushes at many hardware stores, especially if you have a Westlake store in your area, they do carry a small supply of electric motor brushes, but the problem is not just obtaining the right size and length, it is finding the correct composition of the brush,  the right brush springs,  if the springs are detached from the brushes,  the springs need should be replaced also,  and if adjustable as to the pressure of the brush on to whatever surface it rides, that pressure should be adjusted,  a simple fish scale will work in many applications if to get nothing more than something at least close,  

On line you will find a formula for spring pressure based on the physical size of the brush,  many will install new brushes in about anything and the unit might work for a week and then fail,  this is due to the temper of the metal in the spring,  now changed and weak, due to heat and use over the years,   so simply replacing brushes often is not going to resolve anything.

If the brushes and springs are one piece,  much easier, and if no adjustment is available then they have designed the spring to take care of the pressure,  but you are not done yet,  now you have to take a look at what the brush rides on,  it's condition, and if it needs attention,  

Think about this scenario,   the brushes are gone or worn to nothing,  where is the carbon composite that used to be a brush?  Some was exhausted out with the cooling air, the remainder is most likely buried in the windings,  and can cause the insulation to fail, create short circuits via carbon tracks,     

Now if we can find brushes they are NOT going to match whatever surface they ride on,   the surface has changed and the radius has changed,  now the new brush is either flat, or maybe has a slight radius to it, but it will not mate with the rotating surface,   and without full contact,  the brush,  just like removing strands of wire from some connection cable, lowers the amount of current the brush can conduct,    creating arcing,  burning of both brush and surface,  and lack of power and severely shorted life span,   so you have to look these issues over, even if I could provide you with a part number which is not possible.

Your best shot is one of several options,   I can try to go through engineering and find your brushes from archives,   they may be typical,  in stock  no problem,    there may be no info or several options of brushes for your data,   and best is to have a sample of what is left, including spring,    

I can do this for you, or you can call HELWIG Brush    provide the nameplate data and you will get the same info I will,    it will save you to order or attempt to order directly,  then you can contact me on install for help   

http://www.helwigcarbon.com/products/carbon-brush-holders/electric-motor-brush-h

Above is Helwig brush website drilled down to the page you need,   the simple method is to call and provide your motor data, if they have it in their archives,   they will give you a HELWIG part number, price and delivery,     or I can do it for you, but I have to charge to do that so better off to go direct,  my price and their price will be the same,  if dropped shipped, but they will take any credit card,  and I would suggest going direct,   and then find me if you problems installing the brushes,    phone  for HELWIG    US

800-962-4851 or  414-354-2411  located in Milwaukee Wisconsin,   if for any reason they will not or cannot sell you the brushes due to some minimum requirement,  get the part number and we will add to one of our orders, if it works out and should  that way you won't get stuck with a justifiable minimum order,  if these brushes are special they will have to setup to make ONE,   they will spread the setup over the quantity but if you need two or four, which is likely,  it could be expensive,     so if that happens let me know,       

You can take a chance with a Westlake and size them up, from their stock,  they stock mostly common drill and tool brushes,    I am sure you will find out you have something special here,   how special not sure,   

If you have a repulsion induction motor,  a very rate motor,  and this one you have is very old,  pre 1952,   it could very well have antique value,   I can also try and get a value on it if you would like,    but it is fairly likely that you have an antique and a rare antique,  if it is on the original driven device whatever it is,    the whole device could have value,     if you could or would send me some photos,  I can tell more about it,    an AC motor with brushes is something special,  and explained below,     how much could it be worth?  I have seen repulsion induction motors,   go to collectors, if it is is good condition for more than a thousand dollars,   if it is on some special device then it depends on what it is  and the value is determine by that category,      if it just ended up off the original device,  or maybe the category is not as collectable,  you might want to think about storing or selling the motor,  and putting something modern on the device,     

It depends on how much you use it,   and all that, but well worth looking into,   so much history has been scraped,   for nothing, but copper and rarely does anyone know how to remove copper from a motor correctly to get it all without beating the dog crap out of the motor,   it takes a special process but can be done with instructions and readily available everyday tools,      

Ask HELWIG if they will send you some documents on installing brushes, seating them, and setting the tension,  and how to dress or repair the mating surface,    they used to send little booklets out,   but not sure they do that at the retail level anymore,  

If you run into problems you have all my contact info,  just drop me a note or give me a call, we are happy to help you over the phone no charge,      

You will need some commutator paper,   you will tape or mount the commutator paper or sand NOT METAL paper upside down,  on the mating surface,   then hand turn the motor and sand in the radius of the bottom of the brush to match the current radius of the mating surface,  

ONE MORE WARNING<   note on the data plate at the bottom  is says service factor of 1.15 AT RATED VOLTAGE AND CYCLES [HERTZ]  IN THE US THE CYCLES ARE FINE,  MOST POWER IS 59.5  [POWER COMPANIES CAN AND DUE MAKE A LOT OF MONEY BY SIMPLY LOWERING THE SUPPLIED FREQUENCY AND IT HAS NO EFFECT ON ANYTHING BUT SOMETHING VERY HERTZ SENSITIVE    SO NO PROBLEM THERE,   BUT THIS MOTOR IS SO OLD THE RATING IS 110 VOLTS, OR 220 VOLTS AC,    THAT IS 1952 VOLTAGE NOW DAYS YOU SEE VOLTAGES MORE LIKE 120 OR EVEN MORE,    SO WATCH THE CURRENT,   THESE MOTORS CAN BE VOLTAGE SENSITIVE     THE SERVICE FACTOR MEANS AT 1.15 YOU CAN OVERLOAD THE MOTOR BY THAT AMOUNT AT 110 0R 120 VOLTS, THEY ARE SAYING YOU CAN YOU ATTACK A LOAD UP TO 1.15 HP, BUT THE PROBLEM IS   WHEN YOU APPLY TODAYS VOLTAGE OF 120,  10 % OF 110 IS 10 VOLTS WHERE YOUR MOTOR BEGINS TO NOT LIKE THE OVERVOLTAGE CAN ONLY BE MEASURE WITH A SOME SORT OF AMP METER,  A CLAMP ON TYPE AMP METER IS THE BEST,   THEY CAN BE BOUGHT FAIRLY CHEAPLY,   OR RENTED OR BORROWED,  

WE HAVE A TEST SET WITH A DYNO ON IT,  IT IS AMAZING AT WHAT VOLTAGE A PARTICULAR MOTOR WILL REACH THE KNEE OF THE CURVE IN OTHER WORDS,    WE HAVE PUT OLDER MOTORS ON THE DYNO,  ADJUSTED THE LOAD TO FULL,   THEN PLAYED WITH THE APPLIED VOLTAGE,  SOME WOULD BE FINE AT 120  SOME WOULD REACH THAT KNEE AT 117 AT FULL LOAD  AND THE CURRENT WOULD GO SKY HIGH,    BUT WITH A 1.15 SERVICE FACTOR AND BEING THAT OLD, THESE ARE TOUGH ASS MOTORS,  AND MAYBE AGAIN COLLECTIBLE,        BUT WE STILL HAVE NO IDEA IF IT IS A REPULSION INDUCTION OR A SLIP RING MOTOR,       SO A PHOTO WOULD TELL ME, BUT BRUSHES ARE NOT COMMON IN ANY AC MOTOR OTHER THAN SOME KIND OF TOOL MOTOR WHICH IS A SERIES MOTOR EXPLAINED BELOW,        


I would suggest we find out what you have and maybe you want to consider keeping the motor off and use the device with another motor, or maybe the entire device has some collectible value and you may want to consider using some other device, and keep or sell either the motor or if this is the original motor on some sort of original load, sell or keep the entire setup as an antique,   something to think about, as so much history has been destroyed by scrappers who have no clue what they are ripping apart for a few dollars of copper.  If you want to go straight to brushes


 see !!!!!!!! below and skip the rest   or you can go to as explained below, to certain sections, and skip reading the information I have provided you.   

WOW that is old,   a 203 frame is a pre u frame,   which means it is so old it doesn't have the U suffix letter on the frame,    motors built prior to 1964 but after 1952, in that time frame, were NEMA's first attempt at organizing with detail, and organizing vanilla [general duty off the shelf type] electric motors. See ***** down several paragraphs to go to info of motor types, that have brushes and skip the other information I have included.

Prior to 1952 is known as PRE U,   kind of obvious,   and they did have some standards,  frame sizes and so on,  but it was fairly loose,  as far as detail.

You have a pre-u,  [built prior to 1952]  Wagner motor, appears to be a straight induction motor, single phase, dual voltage, got a lot of slip  [ the RPM Is rated at 1750, any 60 cycle motor with 4 poles as you have, is synchronous at 1800 RPM.]  What that means is the physics of poles and cycles dictates that 4 poles with 60 hertz [cycles] per second will turn a rotating induction element [rotor] at 1800 rpm.   

In the real world, with those parameters, you would expect 1800 RPM on paper, but what happens is the motor is effected by windage and friction.

Windage is any loss of RPM, due to fans, internal or external, even fans that are not a component, of the motor,  the rotor might have tangs or protrusions cast into the rotor, which "stirs" the air,  this creates load,  and reduces the rpm by some value dependent on how intense the fan system is.

Next is friction,  this one throws everyone.  Friction is the load created by the bearings.  Makes no difference if the bearings are ball bearings, or plain [sleeve] bearings, or a combination of one on each end,  the bearings are not friction free.

Rolling element bearings,  [ball bearings]  are also know as anti friction bearings. So dependent on the class and type of bearing,  that will determine the bearings internal clearances and tolerances,  which determines the efficiency of a particular bearing.

For example most electric motors with ball bearings are built, designed, with a class 3 type anti-friction rolling element bearing,  which is a fairly tight tolerance bearing, most are built to be sweat on the journals, meaning the bore has a tolerance a few thousandths smaller than a typical journal, and the 203 designation gives the parameters.

On the outside fit of the bearing, it is manufactured and designed to be within a few thousandths of the bearing bore in the end housing,   so friction holds the outside portion of the bearing from spinning in the housing, the smaller ID bore of the bearing is smaller by design, so the bearing itself must be warmed up to expand on a bearing heater, to allow it to slide on the journal, when hot [225 degrees c or around there]  

That is the preferred method of installing a ball bearing,  while you might use a "bearing driver" which is nothing but an open bore piece of metal tool that is manufactured in standard sizes,  in your case  it would be a number 3 driver,   which would have an outside diameter that matches your 203 inside bore, so the bearing can be driven onto the journal [shaft].

It can be done cold, but it is not recommended,  if you are rebuilding this motor past brushes you might want to change out bearings,    once a motor or any device is taken apart, the chances of the bearings if rolling element type,  will sustain some minor brinnelling , which is simply slight or severe scarring on the internal components,


 this causes the ball elements or roller elements to slide around and over but now the internal surfaces have been scarred,  which in turn, depending on the severity of the scarring, could result in the rolling elements making metal to metal contact with the inner or outer "rings" which is just another name for internal bearing parts.

ANOTHER OPTION IS TO MAIL ME THE MOTOR, HAVE THE MATING SURFACE MACHINED, IF REPULSION INDUCTION WE CAN TEST AND INSPECT THE CENTRIFUGAL SWITCH,  INSPECT THE BEARINGS,  REPLACE THE BEARINGS,  BALL OR PLAIN,   BALL BEARINGS FOR AN OLD 203 i WOULD GUESS AT TWO 207 OR ONE 207 AND MAYBE A LARGER 209, BUT EVEN AT THAT, MAYBE 50 BUCKS OF BEARINGS,   IF THEY ARE PLAIN AND WORN,  WE CAN CLEAN UP THE BORES, AND WELD AND MACHINE THE JOURNALS TO A LARGER SIZE TO DEAL WITH THE WEAR ON THE JOURNALS,       WE CAN PUT NEW INSULATION IN THE MOTOR,  BALANCE THE ROTATING ELEMENT,     WHATEVER YOU WANT,    

This all depends on how valuable the motor is,  how many issues it may or may not have,  but remember if the brushes are worn to nothing,  that carbon went somewhere and most went in your motor,  you do not want to burn up a repulsion rotor,   it will have a segmented surface and instead of the mating surface running in the same radial plane as the rotating element,  the mating surface will be mounted with the surface running in the same axial plane   that is the easiest way to visually tell if you have a rep, ind motor or a slip ring motor,      I think you have rep ind  motor because there is no secondary voltage  and most slip ring motors have the secondary voltage on the data plate,     so it kind of narrows things down to a rep ind or a series motor    but that would be one huge series motor in a 203 pre nema frame,      

Call HELWIG<  follow their documents on installing the brushes and do some research on the value of that motor or the whole device,   even though the antique market is depressed like everything else, it is history and they are rare to find,    so make sure   it may be they made a million of these, but again,  we tossed our microfiche years ago,    HELWIG keeps pretty good data,   so it is your best shot,    cost and avail is going to be the problem if there is one,       

anything you need,  you have all my info, call or write with any questions,       

William Babbitt

The problem is most do not realize that when moving a ball bearing mounted in a housing and also mounted onto a journal, there are these tolerances and clearances, which can be easily disturbed or damaged in the dis-assembly process.

As cheap as the ball bearings would be for this motor I would suggest you measure the journals and the housings,   you can find a tolerance plus and minus chart on the Internet,   the journal will need to be x diameter,  round, and within the few thousandths tolerance, so when the new bearing is installed,


the correct amount of crush is there to hold the id or bore to the shaft,   same thing with the outside housings,  both need to be measured with some sort of snap gauges, or inside micrometer,  if it is out of tolerance according to bearing industry standards,  it will most likely be larger than the allowed tolerance.

These tolerances are critical because they also take into consideration, thermal growth.

As the entire motor operates it reaches a running temperature, and at that running temperature, internal metal components will "grow" due to expansion by heat.

So lots of reasons to replace the bearings while you are changing out the brushes.

That was more information than you asked for, but apparently you want a running motor, and while you might be a machinist or mechanic that understands all this,  no way for me to know.

Some people,  especially in this day and age, get really upset, if they get a free answer that has more detail than they asked for.

What they don't understand is most of the information I am providing you.

********  AC labeled motors with brushes   types and use

Nice job of including all the nameplate detail that helps.

BUT you have something special here.  If you have brushes in a motor rated for AC 60 cycles and common dual voltages,  it is not a straight induction motor, or vanilla motor.
''
It has brushes because it is a slip ring type motor,  which would be possible in that frame, or it could be a repulsion induction type motor.

Those are about the only two types of motors that would have brushes in a motor labeled as an AC MOTOR.

There is a third and unlikely option,  it could be a "series" motor.  Not likely in such a big frame,  but we won't ignore the possibility.

Wagner motors or any motor that old,  will be a chase for information in anyone's files,  and probably an empty chase to try and track down what it is by the model or serial.

If you want you can send me some photos,  to these addresses    my business e-mail at MEAR Services in Kansas City is repair@mearservice.com   my personal e-mail is wbwill@sbcglobal.net, my companies rebuild and rewind electric motors, electric devices, antiques, magnetos, coils, transformers, AC DC motors, about any device that rotates or has wires.

We have hundreds of years of experience between myself and my employees, and can fabricate obsolete parts, if needed, we have a full functional job/repair machine shop, including dynamic balancing, alignment, on site repairs, of all shapes sizes and types of rotating equipment, including pumps, of all types and sizes, machine tool magnetic beds,  we will even wind guitar pickups,  just about anything electric motor wise, or mechanical in nature,  including old stoves, and appliances, old obsolete fire box blower motors, we repair devices others won't or cannot.  We have motors or gidgets delivered to our shop everyday.

If you use my office e-mail or home e-mail versus going back through allexperts, please put in the subject line, something to the effect   discussion of motor from allexperts so I know I have info on your issue and will put some priority to your e-mail,  our shop phone is 815-650-4030  MEAR Services in Kansas City [Buckner MO] or EMR Repair Inc,  816-597-3930  that shop is more geared to outside service, alignment, vibration problems, root cause failures,  so on, but any address or phone will get you to someone to help you.

But I can tell you for sure,  it is not a standard single phase induction motor   not with brushes.

A "series" motor which is unlikely, is a motor often found in drills and hand tools. Basically a series motor is a motor with wound stationary fields, and a wound armature [versus some sort of cast or caged induction AC ROTOR]

This design has the stationary fields and the rotating armature connected in series,  so the power goes through the stationary fields, into the armature via a set of brushes to a commutator on the end of the armature,   this design allows way more low end torque, versus a straight AC induction motor, with a rotor.

That way, the motor can be powered by EITHER AC voltage or DC voltage, and regardless which is used,  the idea is to give this low rpm torque curve, [torque being a rating of TURNING POWER VERSUS Horsepower which is simply available power at rated voltage]

What I think you have is a repulsion induction type motor.  This is a very complex motor for the time period,  it is a blending of two designs,   it uses a DC like starting and low end configuration, and then at a certain RPM  it is becomes basically an induction motor,   great for starting high torque requirements on start up, and consistent HP after the load is turning.

Applications would be any kind of flywheel load,  maybe compressor, you see these very special repulsion induction motors on old pipe organs, tooling, conveyor systems,   anything with a load that needs a powerful ability to start something "heavy" turning,  then once up to speed, the induction portion keeps the load moving with the help of the flywheel effect.

The other possible option, with an AC nameplate but needing brushes is some sort of slip ring motor.  A bit like the repulsion induction motor, where the motor can start a "heavy" load,  not as powerful on the low end as repulsion induction,  but it is more powerful than straight induction, by changing the overall resistance and impedance, of the rotating element, in the case of a slip ring motor, the rotating element is a rotor,  in an induction repulsion motor, the rotating element is a blend of armature and rotor,  both are wound rotating elements,  not cast or barred induction type rotating elements known as simply rotors.

Again more information than you asked for  but things you should be aware of, and might be,  I just have no way of knowing, and more than just changing brushes and moving on,  you really need to know what you have,   and at this point I am not sure what you have.

I see this low rpm of 1750 on the nameplate, the very first bell that went off, that is a lot of slip from sync, which I explained above,  most vanilla motors will be rated, a few RPM lower than sync,  ie; 1795, 1775, somewhere in there, not clear down to 1750  a ton of "slip" and only some of the slip is friction and windage in this case the remainder is the components and design,  which in turn, creates this much lower rating of running RPM.

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Three phase/ AC DC single phase motors, controls, any problems or failures, motor installation, performance issues, connections. All other electric motors/gearboxes/apparatus. Specialty repair concerns, obsolete motors and solutions. Other mechanical or specialty equipment. See my profile under Home/electrical at this site

Experience

30 plus years in the electrical motor and apparatus repair industry. VP level management of repair facilities, current owner of my own specialty repair and consulting firm.

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EASA, IBEW [retired], other specialty organizations, Lubrication, Vibration EDI, Tribo-electric Councils

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Currently fielding concerns at this site under "Home Electrical"

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4 year technical, College level specific courses, EASA repair courses, vibration analysis electronic and electrical trade school.

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