Cleaned fans in 6500 today---Really dirty!

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  • Updated 3 years ago
I cleaned my 6500's  two fans today and they where really quite dirty, They even had dog hair in them. I was surprised at how much crap was in them. Now I read there are two fans in the FPGA? I wonder if they need to be cleaned as well? Anyone know for sure?

Thanks in Advance for an answer!
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Reggie-k6xr

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Posted 3 years ago

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Rob N4GA

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I've never had top off mine but can tell you those fans are freaking irritating. Would love to go in and properly heat sink those devices so there's no fan, but we all know this voids the warranty.

The fan on the TX PA is understandable, but it's also very intermittent.

N4GA
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Reggie-k6xr

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I removed the top and bottom as well as the sides to properly clean them good. 
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Norm - W7CK

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Rob, I second that one.  I can't stand the prolific use of pc fans in just about all of the ham gear these days.  Noise, noise noise and dirt dirt dirt.........  A good heat sink would have been a huge improvement....
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DrTeeth

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I wonder how much less noisy quality fans would be rather than the ultra cheap ones used in most PCs. None of the fans I have seen seem to have aerodynamic blades, they all have a uniform cross-section.
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EA4GLI - 8P9EH - Salvador

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The Expert SPE 1k amp comes with 8 Fans, 4 outside 4 inside. First thing I did on mine was to replace all the fans with ultra-quiet ones. The 2 inside ones are a bit tricky, but the back ones are a piece of cake to change. And now I have a bunch of replacement fans in case one fails.
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Rob N4GA

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Might you have a web link to some quiet fans? I like that idea.
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Sal. Which fans did you use?
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DrTeeth

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I would also be interested in makes of quiet fans. The fans are really noisy on my 6300 when they kick in, disappointingly so.
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Rob N4GA

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I'm not even talking about the PA fan which can go on and off depending on PA temp...even though that fan is also WAY too noisy when it kicks on.

I'm talking about the whiney fan that's always on. Makes the 6300 sound like a room full of servers.

That one is out of control!

Rob
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DrTeeth

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TBH, I have not really noticed an "always on" fan. But that PA fan is AWFUL. Luckily, it has only rarely kicked in during JTx mode QSOs at 30w. Also, the problem is that the Flex 6xxx series can run 100% duty cycle modes at full power (100w) - that would keep that PA fan going for a lot longer.
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Reggie-k6xr

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odd, my fans are very quiet! I do not hear them at all unless I put my ear to the sides up close. maybe I am lucky?
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Rob N4GA

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How's your hearing?

Just kidding. 

You are lucky!
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Winston VK7WH

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I agree. I can only just hear the side fans on my 6700, even with both hearing aids in. My hearing must be worse than I thought it was
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Peter Kirsop

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The "always on" fan in my 6300 is irritating.  It is noisier than the fan on my desktop PC and I find it distracting if I am not wearing headphones.  I have now mounted the 6300 away from my desk in a cupboard.  This works well, although it will be even better when remote CW keying is available so I do not need the 6m long leads to headphones and my key.  The long lead caused issues with keying so I built a relay box which takes care of this. The cupboard is large enough to allow air flow so there are no heat issues.
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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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My fans were quite dirty and are not loud at all. I cleaned them, but not the
internal fans.
This reminds me of quite a shock I got some thirty years ago, when my friend Dave let me use his ham station, a Drake line, at Patrick Henry Village, near Heidelberg. The U.S. Army headquarters (USAREUR) were at Heidelberg then, now they are at Stuttgart...
Well, Dave had this Drake line with a big amp, and I was then not licenced for HF in Germany, so he gave me permission to use it, and off he went after some errant. I worked quite a lot of stations this way, using a special callsign, as PHV was extraterritorial. After a while the amp gave off a great lot of brown and smelly smoke and sparks. I was quite afraid that I had broken something, but when Dave came back, he just laughed and said " That's because of our cat, who likes to lie on the warm amp, whick sucks in his hair. About two to three times a year the amp burns off all the hair and dust, no worry..."
So you just wait for the 6500 to clean itself ;-)
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Ouch!! 

BTW Was likely not far away at Sandhofen about the same time, but with no Amateur Radio access.

73

Steve K9ZW

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EA4GLI - 8P9EH - Salvador

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I bought them in Spain on an online retailer of pc components. In the US www.newegg.com has great prices and selection. You can select the size and noise level.

These are the ones I bought https://www.overclockers.co.uk/noiseb...

But you can get better ones on Newegg.
http://m.newegg.com/Product?itemNumbe...
(Edited)
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EA4GLI - 8P9EH - Salvador

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By the way these are Fans for the Expert SPE Amplifier, I don't want people to get confused and think these are for the Flex radios. Also, about the expert amp, it has a "Contest ON or OFF" setting that engages the fans at higher RPMs from the moment you turn the amp on if it is in the ON setting. I find that annoying and I normally have that OFF. 

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Rob N4GA

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Thank you Salvador!
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DrTeeth

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So we can compare, I wonder if FRS would tell us which fans are used in our rigs. For all I know, my 6300 may already have 'quiet' fans.
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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We use several different manufacturers.  I would like to stress that we use the quietest fans at the required CFM rating.  Replacing the fans with an alternate will void your warranty.  The fans for the FPGA and DSP/ARM are not user accessible. 
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DrTeeth

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Mni tnx Tim.
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Peter - PH0PPL

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Tim if FlexRadio Systems is already using the quietest fans at the required CFM rating on the market why is FlexRadio Systems then not considering a different thermal control method... a heat pipe in combination with a smaller less noisier fan for example??

BTW I hope that there are no fans in the Maestro and if there are these fans are as quiet as those used in my Macbook Air.
(Edited)