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Author Topic: ham estate mystery item  (Read 6223 times)
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Patrick J. / KD5OEI
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« on: April 08, 2023, 11:12:01 PM »

This ham had many, many interesting things. Here is something new to me for sure. These were in an organizing bin with a couple of CL-5M5 photocells. -which seem like regular type photocells/photoresistors and not really related to the parts in question.

These are about 1.2" diameter, and have 4 short pins out what I presume is the backside. The other side is slightly domed in appearance. Inside these, there seems to be a liquid, somewhat viscous, and dark-colored like motor oil or light molasses. I can't see where the pins go. As the device is rotated like a wheel, the liquid is free to stay in the lower half.

The number on all of them is 74821 -01
Any ideas what these are?


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Radio Candelstein
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« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2023, 08:30:51 AM »

up/down position sensor?
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« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2023, 08:41:37 AM »

W1RKW said:
Quote
up/down position sensor?

I was going to say something like a mercoid switch.
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« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2023, 10:15:54 AM »

Curious - have you tried taking resistance readings across the contacts, and if so, do they change at all with a change in physical orientation?
And, just a shot-in-the-dark: since these mystery devices were in a bin with photocells, and they have a transparent cover, do you think they might actually be photo-sensitive?
I would actually have expected the contact pins to be on the other side if that were the case, but it's just a thought.
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« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2023, 04:09:27 PM »

Might it be a lightning surge protector...

https://www.cheapham.com/ldg-sp-200-lightning-surge-protector-replacement-gdt/
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K8DI
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« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2023, 07:27:46 AM »

Those are much smaller than the 1.2” diameter OP listed. 
https://www.littelfuse.com/~/media/electronics/datasheets/gas_discharge_tubes/littelfuse_gdt_cg_cg2_datasheet.pdf.pdf

My guess is some form of position sensor.  Does the bit inside that looks metallic move?

Ed
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« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2023, 09:14:54 PM »

Only the liquid moves and there does not seem to be anything else inside. It is probably not a pellet type surge suppressor at least not the composite disc or pellet type. I did not check resistance, but will do next time I am there. I wonder if it could be automotive as the gentleman did a lot of work on his own cars, but this was in an otherwise electronics bin organizer.
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« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2023, 09:42:03 AM »


I believe that is a rare "fitzwaddit"... an integral, but poorly understood and quantum operating device used primarily in the Flux Capacitor assembly, as first found in Roswell...
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« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2023, 04:27:40 PM »

My grandfather referred to such things as dingwatchits, gizzyflobs and other such terms.

Genuine West Texas frontier jibberish.


--Shane
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« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2023, 01:54:16 AM »

A Dallas TX mechanic years ago called odd looking things: 'that Hooter-McGruder deal'.
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Radio Candelstein
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« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2023, 06:57:49 AM »

Those are framistats. Their sole purpose is to cause a bunch of old guys to go on about them for days on end. Apparently those are still in good working order.  Grin
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« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2023, 05:46:59 AM »

Lol.  That reminds me of more West Texas Jibberish.

Grandpa, what's this?  I ask, pointing at something under the hood of the car.

Grandpa, "That's designed to make little boys ask questions.   Works, don't it!".

Of course, he would give me the full rundown after he got his five chuckles in.

--Shane
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« Reply #12 on: April 26, 2023, 08:59:57 AM »

No. Sorry. Framistats had a left hand thread. This is a sub assembly from a Shpitzen-shparken suppressor.
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« Reply #13 on: April 26, 2023, 11:22:30 AM »

Alien technology.
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« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2023, 11:47:09 AM »

OK, I did find out what it is, all BS aside.


It's a one of those.


--Shane
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« Reply #15 on: May 01, 2023, 12:12:18 AM »

up/down position sensor?

We have a winner!

The mysterious fluid is conductive. When it is touching two pin elements, the resistance between them is about 1-2K Ohms. When it is not touching, the resistance is much higher, about 20-30K. Perhaps that high resistance is a residual conduction from a very small amount of the fluid coating ther inside. Perhaps the conductive fluid is an alternative to mercury.

If the device were mounted on a slowly rotating hub, it could be used to detect approximate relative phase and the direction of rotation. I did not have enough fingers to try to see what happens when three terminals touch the fluid.
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Radio Candelstein
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« Reply #16 on: May 01, 2023, 12:48:57 AM »

up/down position sensor?

We have a winner!

The mysterious fluid is conductive. When it is touching two pin elements, the resistance between them is about 1-2K Ohms. When it is not touching, the resistance is much higher, about 20-30K. Perhaps that high resistance is a residual conduction from a very small amount of the fluid coating ther inside. Perhaps the conductive fluid is an alternative to mercury.

If the device were mounted on a slowly rotating hub, it could be used to detect approximate relative phase and the direction of rotation. I did not have enough fingers to try to see what happens when three terminals touch the fluid.


OK, it's so a 4-pole Shpitzen-shparken position sensor. Grin
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« Reply #17 on: May 03, 2023, 01:42:37 AM »

up/down position sensor?

We have a winner!

The mysterious fluid is conductive. When it is touching two pin elements, the resistance between them is about 1-2K Ohms. When it is not touching, the resistance is much higher, about 20-30K. Perhaps that high resistance is a residual conduction from a very small amount of the fluid coating ther inside. Perhaps the conductive fluid is an alternative to mercury.

If the device were mounted on a slowly rotating hub, it could be used to detect approximate relative phase and the direction of rotation. I did not have enough fingers to try to see what happens when three terminals touch the fluid.


OK, it's so a 4-pole Shpitzen-shparken position sensor. Grin

And so it shall be advertised in that manner at the upcoming vintage ham/maker/science components 'estate sale'.
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« Reply #18 on: May 04, 2023, 12:58:20 PM »

O.K., But you must include the product safety warning with it:
ACHTUNG!
ALLES TURISTEN UND NONTEKNISCHEN LOOKENSPEEPERS!
DAS RFMASCHINE IST NICHT FÜR DER GEFINGERPOKEN UND MITTENGRABEN! ODERWISE IST EASY TO SCHNAPPEN DER SPRINGENWERK, BLOWENFUSEN UND POPPENCORKEN MIT SPITZENSPARKEN.
IST NICHT FÜR GEWERKEN BEI DUMMKOPFEN. DER RUBBERNECKEN SIGHTSEEREN KEEPEN DAS COTTONPICKEN HÄNDER IN DAS POCKETS MUSS.
ZO RELAXEN UND WATSCHEN DER BLINKENLICHTEN.

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Opcom
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« Reply #19 on: April 24, 2024, 03:23:22 PM »

It is finally confirmed as to what this item is. It's an Electrolytic Tilt Sensor, not a switch, but a sensor in that the resistive fluid surrounds more or less of each pin, depending upon the angle deviation from 'normal'. When perfectly upright, the resistances between adjacent pins are all equal, as are equal the diagonal corner to corner resistances.

The amount of variance in resistances measured in the upright position is very small but this is calibrated for in the electronics part of the sensor at the factory so they are very accurate.

Some uses are for measuring tilt on scissor lifts, laser levels, and other things which must be kept upright or at a prescribed angle. Fredericks Company is one manufacturer of the devices.
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