Sorvall RC 3B Plus Operational Check

Performing a preliminary check on the Sorvall RC 3B Plus

Transcription of Sorvall RC 3B Plus Operational Check

Welcome back to Biomed Buddy. Today, we're going to take a look at the Sorvall RC 3B Plus. This is a very old instrument, very much in demand. We're going to go through some of just a preliminary check of the instrument.

First we're going to talk a little about the rotor. (Lifts lid inside the machine, :30) This rotor, H400; this is the baby brother of the bigger one. As you can see, this one only holds 4 buckets. The bigger one, I believe, holds 6. First of all, I'm going to tell you, you should remove this rotor once a year. I just grabbed an Allen wrench to turn it. It goes the opposite way of what you would expect. (Turning top to the right, 1:05) The reason you want to remove this rotor once a year ... there's two things. One, so that when you want to remove it, you can remove it. The second thing is so that you can clean out the rotor and specifically the drum. (Motioning to inside wall of machine, 1:21) You want to clean this at least once a year. What happens is over time water's going to build up, and so much water will build it that the instrument will freeze, and all of the sudden your rotor will stop moving because it's got ice in it. It really shouldn't happen, but it does.

Let's grab this thing; these are not light (removes rotor, 1:48). There is your rotor. (Closes lid, 1:55) Lift with your legs, something like that. This rotor has 4 swinging buckets. The first thing you want to make sure is that all of these swing. (Swings buckets, 2:19) All should swing and they should come back. They shouldn't stick out there. Next thing I'm going to want to do (Removes bucket, 2:32), other than just plain cleaning, I'm going to take and make sure that's there's nothing (Wipes groove with cloth, 2:35), no buildup right in here, and I'm going to polish each one of these little pistons, for lack of better words. (Wipes chamber, 2:43) Then I use spin coat. You want to make sure these spindles are real nice and clean. There shouldn't be any buildup. I put a little grease on these (applies grease to spindle). After I've done all of this, I will tell you that I'd wear gloves while doing this. First of all, you don't get your fingers all greasy. The second thing is glass gets inside of that. If you're going down here to clean it out, which I would be doing, and in the bowl itself, there could be some glass. I would put on some gloves.

Again, now that I've got some gloves, I put a little of this spin coat on each one of these spindles. (Motions toward spindle inside the bucket, 3:37) Again, you want to be very clean. I, at the same time, would be wiping out the bottom of the bowl. (Wipes bottom of bowl with towel, 3:41) I've already done that, so there's no need to do it again. (Replaces bucket, 3:48) You're doing this to each one of these little spindles. Again, I've already pretty much cleaned them up, so I don't have to do that, but I would make sure that they're all nice and clean. I don't put a lot on it; I just put it on, wipe it off type of thing. (Greases spindles, 4:19) I'm going to warn you; once more to wear gloves because of the glass. Who knows what kind of nasty stuff has been in this thing. I'm more worried about the glass. Of course doing research, I suppose we should worry about other things. So much for the maintenance of the rotor.

You want to make sure these are all well-balanced and all that. (Swings buckets, 4:58) I also will tell you that there is a spindle top. (Shows spindle top, 5:10) I usually put a little grease on the spindle. (Greases spindle top, 5:12) Don't put much. Again, more of a matter of wiping it off and wiping it on. Of course, this locks down into this (Places top in top center of the motor, 5:20), into the motor, the gyro, and then the top goes on top of it. (Replaces top, 5:31) This simply allows this to go in nice and smooth. (Places spindle top through lid, 5:36) I usually clean this out at the same time. (Greases center hole of lid, 5:44) Don't do too much, just a little. You just want to get the crud stuff; you don't want to mark it up or anything. This should slide right in the top. (Makes sure the spindle top slides through the lid, 5:53) If I didn't mention it, when you screw this in, it is backward to what your normal threads, what you're used to at home.

Before we load the rotor back in, we're going to take a ... do a little operational check. (Places Rotor on the floor, 6:14) Lid (Lifts lid, 6:20): The lid should stay up. It should not, for safety reasons, come down. It should just stay up. The bowl should be clean. (Wipes inside of the bowl, 6:32) If you ever see ... I don't know if you can see it, (Points to the middle of the bowl wall, 6:39), but there's a black ridge around here. A lot of times you've got an O-ring that's come off. This is a gyro (Points to the spindle coming out of the middle of the bowl, 6:45), that's what they call the gyro, right here actually. This rubber boot should be all solid. It shouldn't be dry-rotted. (Motions toward the base of the gyro, 6:51) Underneath that, you'll find bolts to remove this rotor, or the motor. To remove the motor (Motions to lift rubber boot, 7:03), you just basically pull this off, and there's 4 screws in here. You unscrew it and this whole motor sits up. That's a little more than what you need to know for right now. Right now, I'm just making sure that this thing spins somewhat smoothly. (Twists center spindle, 7:15) I don't hear any grinding. I'm also making sure my bowl is clean; no big grooves inside of it, which if it was, it'd probably kill the instrument. Let me turn it on for you. (Turns on machine, 7:34)

See the Door Open came on. (Motions toward controls at top back of machine, 7:42) Light, power light, Start button, Stop button, Imbalance. That's going to ... quickly. The Over Temperature is if you are over your set point for your temperature that you've set the instrument for. The Run, of course, is lit when it's running. The Power just tells you the power is on. Brushes: If your brushes go low, that light should light. Imbalance: If you've got an imbalance, that light should light. Of course you got the Open Door. You got the Stop button and the Start button. Brake gives you different degrees of how fast it will brake. Time: This is where you're going to set your time for how long you want it to spin. I'm going to speak a little louder, because the compressor just kicked in. You've got a Hold button here, and of course set certain times. Then you have your speed here. Your rotor cannot exceed certain speeds, which you all need to get a chart if you run different rotors. You don't want to exceed the rating of your rotor. In fact, quite frankly with older units, I’d go down a little. Then you've got the revolutions per minute. You got the temperature, and you got the temperature set point. I'm going to set this temperature for 4 degrees. For this demonstration, we're going to close the lid (Closes lid, 8:59) and wait for the temperature to come down. Now that we've let the instrument set for a little bit, we're going to take a look at the refrigeration system. (Opens lid, 9:12) I don't know how well you can see this. (Points the bowl, 9:17) You see how there's lines going around here? I think we're going to bring the camera up just because I think this is important. You see frost lines right here, right here, and right here. (Points out three frost rings on the side wall of the bowl, 9:27)

These frost lines, basically since I've got 3 rounds here, then there's coils that go around this bowl here, and that's what cools the instrument. I'm not sure you can see this, but you've got 2 temperature probes also right there. (Shows probes bottom of the bowl, 9:43) Keep in mind that when you set this to 4 degrees, the inside of this bowl, or the side of this, is much colder than 4 degrees. People don't understand this. Your temperature is supposed to correlate with the sample that's running inside your rotors, not the fabric of the bowl. The bottom line is this: Since I've got my frost lines for all 3 around, I know my refrigeration is working and my temperature is at 4 degrees.

Let's put the rotor back in (Removes rotor lid and replaces rotor, 10:28). Again, pull that rotor out at least once a year, minimum. (Replaces gyro, 10:48) Goes in the opposite way you would expect. (Screws toward the left, 10:57) You take an Allen wrench ... I don't care what you use, but it's what I use. I tighten that a little. I don't overly tighten it, but I snug it down. Keep in mind; if you don't take these out periodically, this will be one of your first problem areas, is you won't be able to get off. Next one will be this whole thing will be stuck on. You were warned. (replaces lid, 11:30) (removes lid, 11:34)

For this run, we're going to take our [inaudible: 11:36] out; got all different sizes. (Replaces rotor lid and closes top, 11:44) Let's see. Where are we going? We'll go to 1000 RPM, and we'll set our time up. (Sets timer, 12:05) We'll leave the brake where it is. We're only going to run it for a minute, but I'll set it at 5. We're going to hit the Start button. (Presses start, 12:13) Door closes, Overtime goes up, come over to rev and temp. It should start coming up to speed. On this particular unit, there is 2 ways that you can get and see to make sure that its speed is accurate. One is through a tap through this, and I never use that. I don't even know if it's really to be used, but I see that they've got it. On the back, you can see there's two jacks, and you use a meter to determine its correct speed. Again, there's alternatively way is through that. As you can see, this unit is running. One of the things that I am looking at is that I'm going to pay close attention to that temperature; it should not raise. One of the tests that I'm not doing with this rotor, but one of the tests is to use a big, heavy... a lighter rotor, an S34 or something along that lines; something a little smaller, and run it at high speeds.

If you have a big rotor in here and you're running it at whatever the maximum amount that you're going... that you're supposed to run that rotor, you'll see the same thing. The point being is I see this issue may depend on the size of the rotor and the speed you're running at. What I'm concerned about is the actual issue, is this temperature should stay there. It should not come up. If you see, especially running at high speeds or with a large rotor, if you see that temperature creeping up, then you know you have a refrigeration issue.

Thank you very much for attending this session of Biomed Buddy: Basic Operation of the RC 3B Plus.