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Fixing leaking 377 upper buffer chambers

Bruce Roe BROE at aardvark.ucs.uoknor.edu
Fri Mar 22 08:56:48 EST 1996

Hi all,
	The recent posting by Angela Higgins where she states:

>The next thing is that our front warming plate decided to start scorching
>from the inside out in one bottom corner and along the edge just up from
>the same corner, so we've had that replaced (we've had our 377 exactly 1
>year now).

prompted me to report what we have done to fix this.  It turns out that
the problem is that the upper buffer chambers in the 377's do not seal
as tightly as they should.  We thought about replacing the springs in
the gel plate holder but instead decided that the groove holding the
gasket was cut too deep.  Thus, I bought a tube of "Silicon Gasket Making"
goop (it is used to make gaskets for auto engines) from my local hardware
store, removed the gasket from the upper buffer chamber, filed in about
three-quarters of the groove with this liquid gasket making material,
smoothed over it with my finger and let it dry for about an hour.  Then,
I applied some silicon glue (also purchased from my local friendly hardware
man), put the original gasket back in place, taped it down to keep it in
place, and let it sit for overnight.  After removing the tape used to keep
the gasket in place, the "fixed" upper buffer chamber was ready to use.
During the past month we have had no problems with leaking and thus no
resulting scorching or bubbles on the front warming plate on any of our
six 377's that we run 3-4 times a day.  

Up until solving this design problem, poor ABI had to replace the front
warming plate in all 6 instruments.  Just for grins, we saved the old plates
and after sanding off the burned areas, re-coated with heat resistant paint
and now have spares just in case something happens to the other plates.

BTY, in both Angela's message and an earlier one, we NEVER RUN the data
collection while the ABI Macintosh's are network accessable.  To assure
this we ALWAYS restart the ABI associated Macs with "extensions off",
by restarting while holding the "shift" key down.  This was on the advise
of our absolutely fantastic ABI service technicians who also advised that
we 1) rebuild the desktop at least once a month and 2) run a disk utility,
such as Norton Utilities, to un-fragment the disk at least once a month.
Thanks to Matt and Eric (our top notch ABI fix-er-uppers), we've not
experienced thess data collection glitches in over 6 months since
following their advise religously.

Bruce A. Roe, Ph.D    Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
                      University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019-0370, U.S.A.
Phone: (405) 325-4912 or 7610; FAX: (405) 325-7762; e-mail: broe at uoknor.edu
********************** http://dna1.chem.uoknor.edu/ ***********************

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