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Little Giant 25 Help


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Yesterday I acquired a very nice Little Giant 25 lb. hammer. I tested it when I picked it up, and it seemed to run fine. Upon getting it home however, the hammer won't start unless I press the treadle down very sharply (can't make it start slowly). Once it's going, it won't stop until I shut the power off. Taking my foot off the treadle does nothing. Also , it seems to just run at one speed once it's going. The treadle doesn't seem to adjust anything.

The other thing is that when I tested it on a 2X4, the hammer would always double-tap. Instead of going WHACK, WHACK, WHACK, it goes WHACK-WHACK, WHACK-WHACK, WHACK-WHACK.

Anyone know how to adjust one of these?

-Jeff

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Hard to diagnose remotely, but is there grease in the clutch?  On Little Giants there HAS to be oil or grease in the clutch cone or they grab and won't let go, and you can't feather the clutch.  Otherwise, check the tension on the treadle and connections.  It may have loosened up during transport, or maybe it got bent.  

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Hmm...the surface inside the clutch where the pads contact it is completely dry. I should put some oil in there? Any particular kind? I have some vactra #2 oil as well as some #2 grease I use on my mill. Would one of those work? Here's a picture with an arrow indicating what I think you are taking about.

IMG_2603.jpg

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Jeff see my response in What did you do in your shop today.

Do not grease the surface you indicate in the photo above. The grease you need in that area is applied through that little grease port sticking out of the center. Get a grease gun and squirt it in there until you start to see it come out of wherever it's going. Go around the hammer and locate all of those grease ports (there should be about 8-12 of them) Fill all of them up and do it frequently. There should also be some grease chambers on top of the crank shaft. These should be packed full with grease.

If you can, post some more photos of the entre mechanism.

Edited by Joshua States
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Also check here: https://www.littlegianthammer.com/helpful-documents.php

I think the double-tap will work itself out with the clutch adjustment. If not, try easy stuff first, like tightening the belt. A loose belt can cause ram slip.

Edited by Joshua States
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I actually did mean to grease where the arrow is.  The early style wood block clutches are different than the later cone clutches.  My Star hammer clutch is nearly identical, and it gets enough grease from the excess slung off in use.  Those felt-filled wells atop the bearings are for oil, not grease.  Way oil is fine for those.  The general rule is holes, felt-filled wells, and flip caps get oil; zerks, alemites, and screw-top cups get grease. And any mechanical hammer should be dripping with both.

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I wiped off some of the oil this morning, and it's back to where it was. The hammer only engages with a sharp press of the treadle, and it won't disengage when I let off the treadle. I noticed that when I take my foot off the treadle and the hammer is going, the blocks come out to where they were before the hammer started going, but the hammer keeps going. So it looks like the blocks aren't sticking in the pulley. I don't know why it keeps hammering though. I also noticed there are some metal shims under the blocks. Should I add more shims?

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I put this in the other thread, but you need this DVD: https://www.anvilfire.com/bookrev/index.php?bodyName=manzer/manzer.htm&titleName=The Power Hammer Cycle by Dave Manzer

If the wood blocks are truly disengaged and the hammer still runs, something is wrong with physical laws...  If you grease that zerk in the center of the clutch until grease starts showing on the shaft that may well fix it.  Sounds like there is something (old hard grease, dust, a bit of scale) stuck in between the pulley and the shaft.  More shims are not the answer, that would only make it worse.  

Theory #2: How did you wrestle it onto the trailer?  If it worked fine before you moved it, something may have gotten jammed or bent somewhere in the process of loading, tying down, or unloading it.  Could be as simple as an overtightened bolt on the throwout.

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Thanks Alan. I just ordered the DVD. I'll go get a grease gun today. That's the only part I haven't lubricated. I used an engine hoist with a strap under the C-frame to lift it into the trailer, and then a come along with a strap around the base to pull it in. To unload it I used a forklift and put a 4X4 in the C-frame to lift it with the forks. I was pretty careful not to bang anything around. 

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After looking at that latest picture with the spring and the picture of it strapped in on the trailer, I have a new theory: Those straps around the body of the hammer are pulling in on the pushrod that links the treadle to the fork.  The hook that holds the spring to the treadle looks to be bent open a bit, thus losing a bit of spring force.  Since it looks like the spring can't be tightened and further by that eye bolt, you may try modifying or making a new hook for the bottom end of the spring that pulls it tighter.  Assuming a good shot of grease doesn't fix it, that is.  

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Well, I gave her a shot of grease, but it didn't seem to help. After a couple of pumps on the gun, grease was coming out of the joint at the bell fitting. I'm thinking that's not good? Could it be plugged?

uNbT0wYHRGyFQKjcuCLDmA.jpg

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Some new data - I tightened up the zerg with a wrench and pumped some more grease. This time it started squirting out of the grease gun nozzle itself after a couple of pumps. I also smeared some grease in the pulley thinking to give the blocks something a little more sticky to grab on to. The hammer still won't start unless I stomp the treadle sharply a few times (I'm thinking that by hitting it hard it's throwing the clutch all the way in enough so it grabs). When I release the treadle the hammer continues to hit, although more softly. If I then press the treadle gently, I can find a sweet spot where the hammer slows and then stops. So I'm thinking that the issue revolves around the shaft (see what I did there?) and the grease zerg. Is it possible that there's not enough grease in there, making it hard to get it started, and once it's started it's sticking so it keeps running. When I press the treadle in just enough for the blocks to start catching, it overcomes the friction within the mechanism, causing it to stop? Could it be that it needs more oil somewhere else? 

Edited by jheinen
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It does sound like something is clogged in that fitting.  Maybe if you took that whole grease pipe thing off and sprayed some degreaser in the hole, then dug around in there with a stiff small wire, then repeat until you see degreaser coming out onto the shaft?  Because yes, you should be able to pump grease into the zerk and see it splooge out onto the shaft around the bearing.

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11 minutes ago, jheinen said:

The hammer still won't start unless I stomp the treadle sharply a few times (I'm thinking that by hitting it hard it's throwing the clutch all the way in enough so it grabs).

Your throw out linkage is off or something got bent from where it needs to be.

 

3 minutes ago, Alan Longmire said:

Because yes, you should be able to pump grease into the zerk and see it splooge out onto the shaft around the bearing.

Correct, but those Zerks can be a little tricky. If you don't have the grease gun positioned exactly right or are moving it around, the grease will splooge out around the zerk and not go in.

14 minutes ago, jheinen said:

Is it possible that there's not enough grease in there, making it hard to get it started, and once it's started it's sticking so it keeps running. When I press the treadle in just enough for the blocks to start catching, it overcomes the friction within the mechanism, causing it to stop?

How this works is the motor turns the pulley and the treadle engages the crank shaft when the wood blocks go in to the pully. It sounds like the wood blocks and the crank are not connected properly. Turn off the machine and operate the ram wheel by hand looking at the wood blocks. What happens?

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Also, looking at the placement of your wood blocks and the pully (I call it the flywheel) your blocks are sticking much further out from the flywheel in the at rest condition than mine are. As a result, you would have to fully depress the treadle to get any engagement of the flywheel to the wood blocks. The wood blocks should be permanently connected to the crankshaft that operates the ram. When you turn the ram wheel at the front of the machine, the wood blocks should spin.

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Jeff, if there is no way to adjust the throw out linkage, and no return spring, I think we have discovered why the hammer keeps running when you release the treadle. There has to be a return spring somewhere to pull the flywheel off the wood blocks.

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I was mistaken. There is a spring to return the treadle.  It seems to be returning the treadle correctly.

2074538206_KskzQJnQ9K1fv2Cmc4w.jpg

18 minutes ago, Joshua States said:

Jeff, if there is no way to adjust the throw out linkage, and no return spring, I think we have discovered why the hammer keeps running when you release the treadle. There has to be a return spring somewhere to pull the flywheel off the wood blocks.

 

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Looking at the pic of the hammer in the trailer, it looks like your return spring is attached to the foot treadle and the base of the C-frame. Not ideal as it relies on pulling the treadle upward to reverse the flywheel. It really should be attached directly to the flywheel and the upper frame. 

 

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Looking at that pic, it looks like that spring is as short as it gets (no further tightening) and it isn't strong enough to pull the flywheel off the wood block clutch. Can you relocate that spring to the upper frame and attach directly to the flywheel?

It also looks like the turnbuckle is behind the frame?

Edited by Joshua States
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6 minutes ago, Joshua States said:

Looking at that pic, it looks like that spring is as short as it gets (no further tightening) and it isn't strong enough to pull the flywheel off the wood block clutch. Can you relocate that spring to the upper frame and attach directly to the flywheel?

It also looks like the turnbuckle is behind the frame?

When I release the treadle, the flywheel does come all the way off the blocks. If I rotate the wheel by hand and step on the treadle, the blocks do not turn. In fact, if I look closely, when the treadle is depressed it does not look like the blocks touch the flywheel. I can see daylight in there, which would explain why it doesn't start unless I stomp the treadle. There's still about 1/4" of travel left with the treadle fully depressed, and I think that when I hit it hard it throws the flywheel just enough to start it going.

5 minutes ago, Joshua States said:

What's this? Motor tension?

InkedJheinlein PH_LI2.jpg

The turnbuckle on the left is for the motor, the big spring on the right is the treadle return spring.

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Take a pic from the side with the treadle not depressed.  How far out of the flywheel do the blocks sit? Mine look like this with no pressure on the treadle at all

15428445842436307973019562611411.jpg

Edited by Joshua States
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The flywheel is too far off the clutch in the rest (not depressed) position. Here's what I think you need to do.

Take that rod that goes from the foot treadle to the throw out arm and shorten it by putting a bend or curve in it. This will put the flywheel further out towards the clutch in the rest position and raise the foot treadle. It's possible that the rod got bent straighter than it should be by the strap in the trailer as Alan noted. Get it so the flywheel is engaging the clutch when the foot treadle is about 50% depressed. The wood blocks should be entirely inside the flywheel when the foot treadle is fully depressed.

Edited by Joshua States
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