I think i broke my powerball the day it arrived...
I received my first powerball today, and the two first times i was able to get it started i got it going really fast ( dont know how fast because i didnt buy the counter ) and as i'm not used to it, at a certain point i was not able to support it anymore so i ceased building speed, and the ball started making a lot of an ugly harsh noise for some time as the rotor was stopping to spin ... I don't remember if it was making noise this times, because i used it for a really short period of time, but now it is making some noise when i use it, even at very low speeds, and the ball seems to vibrate a little . I was reading the forums and i read that the ball was not supposed to make noise at all, so i'm sending this post to ask if i really broke it, and if there is something i could do to fix it. And if i broke it, i want to know if i can get it replaced, because in the brazilian manual there was nothing written about the way i should stop the ball. I bought it at the official brazilian site.
Sorry for the poor english.
First of all, that's not poor English...you write better than a lot of English people do!
Second of all, you may realise now that you should really maintain a firm grip on the Powerball at all times, even when you want it to slow down. The way a Powerball works, is that at speed, and with a firm grip, the axle of the spinning rotor will be pressed quite hard down on the inner tracks, and they'll roll along it nicely. One end of the axle will be pressed against one track, the other end of the axle against the other track.
However, if you loosen your grip, the whole Powerball casing is allowed to twist away from the force of the rotor axle, and this will cause the axle to grind and slip against the inner tracks, and also probably make the axle ends jump from one track to the other. This grinding action can quickly wear down the tracks, because, after all, they're just plastic. (Polycarbonate plastic, so tough, but still susceptible to damage.)
The GOOD news is that I don't think a loose grip can cause the axle to bend, or to cause damage to the rotor itself, so I doubt your Powerball is broken...it's probably just a bit worn. But a weel used Powerball WILL be quite worn. I know how quiet and smooth they sound when they're new, but as they get well used they sound rough, but also get faster.
I suggest you get it spinning and keep it going quite fast for as long as you can...10 or 20 minutes or more. If it DOES vibrate, (like a mobile phone on vibrate, or a Playstation controller), then let us know, because that's not meant to happen. If it just sounds rough then it's probably okay.
Thank you for the attention, Tim
Yes, i think its vibrating like a mobile phone , or a Playstation controller ( but not so hard )... Sometimes the sound gets louder...
When it's stopping to spin, at a certain moment when the rotor passes through a certain place i can feel that its not spinning smoothly ( it's hard to explain , i feel like a grrr inside the powerball ), and also some clicks...
I don't know how a new powerball should work, because that was my first time using it, and i don't know anyone who owns one.
I recorded the noise it makes for you to check:
This file is a "full section":
And this is only when the noise gets louder:
I'm really sad, because powerballs are really expensive here in Brazil, and i didn't even had the chance to use it the right way ...
Hmmm, doesn't sound too happy, but still doesn't sound, (to me), like it's broken. That squeaking on the first MP3 file...I've heard that on 250Hz Pros with the metal counterweight on one side of the axle, and I've never known what causes it. My Dad's does it, (though because he never uses it I'm going to "borrow" it off him for a while).
Have you tried taking it apart? If you can dismantle it, check the white plastic band in which the rotor sits. There's a hole in each side where the axle ends sit, and these holes can get worn, which doesn't help. This white band would be the first thing to try replacing - if you email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask them nicely, they might be able to ship one out to you. (You'll need to tell them exactly what's written on the rubber grip, and where you bought it, but they're very helpful.)
I'm using it a lot now, and i'm almost sure that it is vibrating in a way it shouldn't, not all the time, but sometimes it seems to vibrate a lot ( when i spin it real fast its almost impossible to spin it in a way the noise does't appear, even if , to me, i think it's equilibrated ). I'm afraid to open it and break it, or not be able to put it back again, afterall i don't understand some of the words in the description of how to open it, and i don't have a vise.
Anyway, i sent an e-mail to the responsibles for NSD powerballs in brazil, and according to the girl who answered me, the vibrations and noises i described are not because it's broken, but because i'm not good at spinning it yet, and with time and practice i'll do it right. I'm almost sure i'm doing it right, but if she says...
I'll continue using it the way it is, because i don't want to sens it to the US for repair, it would take too much time. I'm only afraid because it's written in some places in the site that "generic" cheap powerballs should be avoided because they are not ballanced and make vibrations that could be harmful to the arm's muscles, and i almost sure mine is doing those too ...
Don't worry about not having a vise.
The casing of the powerball is really really strong.
Undo the two screws under the grip band, then put the powerball on the floor so that one screw hole is on the floor and the other is facing straight up. (The grip should be still on the powerball)
Now hit the powerball with your hand, it needs to be fairly hard and quick.
Don't worry you won't break it.
Look under the band, you will probably have "popped" the two halves of the case apart.
Then just pull the two halves apart.
Nothing horrible will come out and its simple to put back together again.
You will probably find some tiny bits of plastic that look like dust or dirt inside the ball.
Give everything a clean with a dry clean cloth.
Check the rotor for cracks, usually appear in the "fins" on the side of the rotor.
Put it back together again.
You've just completed your first bit of powerball maintenance.