New Giveaway - Wort Monster Conical Fermenter!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Bottling/Kegging > Powering a computer fan to cool the tower - troubleshooting




Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-31-2009, 11:57 PM   #1
dcgrp
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Eau Claire
Posts: 19
Default Powering a computer fan to cool the tower - troubleshooting

I'm hoping to get some advice from someone who knows more about electronics than me.

I bought a simple 50 mm computer fan (12V DC) that used a molex plugin (4 pin). I clipped it off so that I only have the hot lead +12V and the ground going to the fan. Then, I bought a AC to 12V DC adapter. Clipped off whatever connector was on there, stripped wires on each device, twisted together (hot to hot, ground to ground). Plugged it in to the wall and... nothing. The fan does not turn on.

Did I do something wrong? Or do I possibly have a faulty component?



__________________
Primary - First AG, Bell's Two Hearted Clone
Secondary - Empty
Keg1 - Mango IPA
Bottled - My First Batch, B3 light ale
dcgrp is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-01-2009, 12:10 AM   #2
Zen_Brew
Zensunni Brewer
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Zen_Brew's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Seattle
Posts: 1,921
Liked 22 Times on 22 Posts
Likes Given: 3

Default

The fan should have a current rating on it in milliamps (mA) or a power rating on it in watts (w).

You have to make sure the power supply will put out enough juice to drive the fan. So if the fan says say 500 mA, you would need the power supply to be rated at or near 500 mA to drive the fan.

It is always possible you have a bad component. Does the fan react at all when you connect it?



__________________
Primary: German Hef, Belgian IPA, Scottish 80, Belgian Dubbel
On Tap: Oatmeal Stout, Vanilla Oatmeal Stout, Belgian Dark Strong, Munich Dunkel, Dunkel Weizen, Oktoberfest, Bock, IPA, Black IPA, English IPA, Pale Ale

Using the mind to look for reality is delusion. Using your senses to look for reality is awareness.

"One time I was so desperate for a beer I snuck into the football stadium and ate the dirt under the bleachers." Homer Simpson

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Hoppiness
Zen_Brew is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-01-2009, 12:19 AM   #3
bhs668
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: RI
Posts: 110
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Also try reversing the wires.

__________________
bhs668 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-01-2009, 12:31 AM   #4
dcgrp
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Eau Claire
Posts: 19
Default

I tried reversing the wires. Also, the supply gives .5 amps. The fan needs about .1 amps. I'll probably go to the computer shop tomorrow and put the power supply up to a volt meter thingee. If that works, I'll ask them to replace the fan.

__________________
Primary - First AG, Bell's Two Hearted Clone
Secondary - Empty
Keg1 - Mango IPA
Bottled - My First Batch, B3 light ale
dcgrp is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-01-2009, 12:37 AM   #5
Brewin_CRAZY
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Portland
Posts: 477
Default

Its a 4 pin fan, you need to connect the other two wires together (the ones that are not power) for it to turn on. Some fans have a fail safe, if they are connected wrong they will not turn on (positive to negative and negative to positive), others will just spin the other way.

But your problem is that you dont have those other two wires connected to each other. Connect them and you will be just fine. That is the signal that tells the fan to turn on.

__________________
Primary: Air...
Secondary: 10gal-Double IPA, 5gal-Pure Apple Cider,
Kegged: 10gal-Christmas Ale, 5gal-Hopped Up Stout, 5gal-Light Rye Ale, 5gal Dunkel Bock
Bottled: DFH 120 Clone (Kicks your A$$)

"Brew happy, brew often, and always brew with friends." -Me
"I dont home brew because I'm poor, I'm poor because I home brew!!!" -Me

"If I ever leave this world alive ill be drinkin up in the sky, with you my friend by my side" RIP B.G.
And always remember friends "Do NOT set yourself on fire"
Brewin_CRAZY is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-01-2009, 01:32 AM   #6
dcgrp
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Eau Claire
Posts: 19
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewin_CRAZY View Post
Its a 4 pin fan, you need to connect the other two wires together (the ones that are not power) for it to turn on. Some fans have a fail safe, if they are connected wrong they will not turn on (positive to negative and negative to positive), others will just spin the other way.

But your problem is that you dont have those other two wires connected to each other. Connect them and you will be just fine. That is the signal that tells the fan to turn on.
It seems to me that in the molex thing, the four wires don't contact each other at all.

So, the molex is...

+5V (red)
Ground (black)
Ground (black) (had a black going to fan)
+12V (yellow) (had a red going to fan)

Now, connected to the Ground next to the 12V and the 12V there was a black and red wire respectively. It is my understanding that these wires never had any contact with the other ground and the 5V wire.

But, please let me know if my understanding is wrong!

Thanks for all the help so far.
__________________
Primary - First AG, Bell's Two Hearted Clone
Secondary - Empty
Keg1 - Mango IPA
Bottled - My First Batch, B3 light ale
dcgrp is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-01-2009, 02:02 AM   #7
Brewin_CRAZY
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Portland
Posts: 477
Default

So i decided to tune out the fact that you said molex. I was assuming it was a 4 pin connector for the motherboard (i.e. CPU fan). I have never used that type of comp fan before, however it should work just fine if you connect it the way you have it. Sorry for the confusion.

I would assume that just 12V to a ground connector should work. Assuming the fan spins freely when you spin it by hand it should be functional. I would connect the 12V and each ground then just start messing with the wires, at 12V, prob like .5 A you wont fry anything. Just start messing with the wires, I have done this many times to try to get things to work. 12V is nothing, the fan may need that 5V hooked up, but it shouldnt, try just connecting the 5V to one of the grounds (while the 12V is powered) and see if that works. Like I said, just mess with it, those fans are pretty robust.

If all else fails take it in to the comp shop and tell them you couldnt get it to work.



__________________
Primary: Air...
Secondary: 10gal-Double IPA, 5gal-Pure Apple Cider,
Kegged: 10gal-Christmas Ale, 5gal-Hopped Up Stout, 5gal-Light Rye Ale, 5gal Dunkel Bock
Bottled: DFH 120 Clone (Kicks your A$$)

"Brew happy, brew often, and always brew with friends." -Me
"I dont home brew because I'm poor, I'm poor because I home brew!!!" -Me

"If I ever leave this world alive ill be drinkin up in the sky, with you my friend by my side" RIP B.G.
And always remember friends "Do NOT set yourself on fire"
Brewin_CRAZY is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
computer fan/project box to cool draft tower; advice on size of fan? Bikerco27 Bottling/Kegging 41 07-12-2011 08:55 PM
Over powering oak flavor... Beer_Maker General Techniques 10 09-09-2009 03:27 PM
Does a tower do anything special or just look cool? zanemoseley Bottling/Kegging 13 02-22-2009 06:38 PM