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Ramathorn

Polyscience Creative vs. Chef Series

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FoodMan   

the one thing that might help you

 

if you are polite about it

 

is that your pictures might become 'viral'

 

you have to be very very subtle.

Are you also reading "Trust me I'm Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator" by Ryan Holiday ?? :-)

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rotuts   

nope

 

its just that those who manufacture might not want their manufactures defects 

 

widely know.

 

that's your Ace of Spades.

 

good luck

 

as they say, those noodles are best eaten cold.

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My thoughts exactly Paul. I emailed them something along those lines this morning. FWIW attached is a picture of the circulator showing the issue.attachicon.gif1-20140614_204647.jpg

Looks like they used a crimp connector and then sealed it with heat shrink tubing.  I'm surprised by the amount of rusting on the heater coils and retaining nuts.  Why wouldn't they use stainless?

 

You could certainly make a video and post it to YouTube, or start a Polyscience Sucks! page on  Facebook.

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gfweb   

If you do watch out for their lawyers.

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FoodMan   

Update: After a few emails back and forth (and me refusing to buy another circulator at a discount) it seems like they are going to honor the warranty even though it expired a few months ago as a courtesy. Very cool of them.

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rotuts   

""   Update: After a few emails back and forth (and me refusing to buy another circulator at a discount) it seems like they are going to honor the warranty even though it expired a few months ago as a courtesy. Very cool of them. "":

 

excellent !

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dcarch   

"----2- any suggestions how i might be able to repair it myself? is it a fuse that is burnt? can the heater be busted? ----"

 

​Do not try to fix a device like this yourself unless you are very very experienced with power electric work.

 

​High power, cramped components, water operating environment ------- someone can be killed if you don't know the proper way to wiring things up.

 

dcarch

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Update: After a few emails back and forth (and me refusing to buy another circulator at a discount) it seems like they are going to honor the warranty even though it expired a few months ago as a courtesy. Very cool of them.

 

Maybe let them know you're posting about your, um, positive customer service experience on egullet, and your blog that's read by millions. Phrase it in a way that's more carrot than stick. It might encourage them to offer reasonable service to everyone.

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FoodMan   

Definitely been a positive experience dealing with the customer support via email. Quick responses and already sent me all the forms to return the one I have and get a new one. Could not have asked for a better outcome. 

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Smithy   

That's great news, Elie.  Thanks for posting about the positive outcome.

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My polyscience creative appears to be unusable after ~ 15 months.
 
Turning on emits a tiny puff of smoke which smells like burning. It turns on and runs, but common sense dictates that I don't use it.
 
I paid the full 499 for this ~15-18 months ago. Very light use. 
 
 
Very unhappy, especially considering that there's no repair route for this unit.  
 
Addendum: Opened it up to see if it had the same problem. The connector to the pump is charred, just like the images posted earlier.

 

I've attached. Hopefully it picked up enough detail, but that connector is charred (flaking), and the wire near it is a little scorched. 

 

That seems like a legitimate problem, and a little scary. It's almost as if the heater isn't using the correct connectors, or right gauge wire and it burns through the connector.   It's hard to see, but the feathery looking thing next to the white streaks on that connector is melted wire also.

 

Is that normal, or is this actually something dangerous?  

 

I'll reach out to polyscience to see what they suggest. 

 

IMG_0758.JPG


Edited by Lord_Pall (log)

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Okay i emailed polyscience. Hopefully I hear from them next week.

From what i can tell, that kind of burnt wiring is bad news. Like catch on fire bad news. That insulation looks like it overheats, melts/chars, and then shorts out. Not sure if that would start a fire in some cases.

Anyone know if this is more prevalent than just these 2 units?

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Yikes!!!!!!  :shock:

I sure as heck wouldn't leave a PolyScience Creative Series unattended!!!!!!  :blink:

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dcarch   

That charred connector looks like to me connects to the heater, not to the pump.

 

The pump looks to me is above that connection and is a very low power shaded pole motor.

 

If that's the case, you might have run low in water at one point and the heater overheated the rubber on the connector.

 

Or, water/moisture condensation got inside the connection and rusting started.

 

Not much you can do. May be coat that spot with high temperature silicone and keep running the unit until it dies.

 

I don't think it can start a fire, may be blow a fuse.

 

dcarch


Edited by dcarch (log)

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Sorry, yes it's the heater connection.

No moisture or corrosion, like the other pics.

The unit doesn't actually run power to the heater or pump if the water is low. You flip it on, it runs a system check, and if the water is low, it won't power up the pump or heater at all. Any drop in water level and it shuts off immediately. 

Still, that might be the case. It does emit smoke and melt the adjacent wired though when it starts to run, even in a correct environment.

 

If it's just an overheated connecter, replacing the melted stuff with high temp silicon might work. Still doesn't seem like normal wear and tear to me.


Edited by Lord_Pall (log)

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@Lord_Pall  Please let us know how things go with Polyscience.  Two units with the same type of electrical failure is worrying.


Edited by sharpknife (log)

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Still waiting on a polyscience response. 

 

That said:

http://www.williams-sonoma.com/products/polyscience-sous-vide-professional-creative-series/?pkey=e%7Cpolyscience%7C2%7Cbest%7C4294967106%7C1%7C24%7C%7C2&cm_src=PRODUCTSEARCH||Category-_-Electrics-_-NoMerchRules#reviews

 

Top review, same failed charred electronics. I don't think that's Foodman's review. 

 

Amazon has 1 failure complaint, but more about warranty service with no details. There was also a review claiming a fire was started by their unit. They did however still give it 2 stars.   :huh:  Not a clue what you have to do to get 1 star. 

 

http://www.amazon.com/Sous-Vide-Professional-Immersion-Circulator/product-reviews/B00CC2OLHC/ref=cm_cr_pr_hist_2?ie=UTF8&filterBy=addTwoStar&showViewpoints=0&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending

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Deryn   

Now wondering if I should open mine up when I get home to see if there is any evidence this may be about to happen to it too. If it has not yet happened, the recommendation would be to ? ... wrap the wires with something else? spray it with ? ... silicone? Or just stop using it? It is also out of warranty. I haven't got it here to look at it right now.

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I don't know enough about this to say whether high temperature silicon on top of smoldering insulation is a good idea. 

 

 

Top of my head, if it's a crimp connector, heat cycling probably expanded it or somesuch. You'd have to pull the whole thing, solder (Or some equivalent for high temperature application), and then seal it with something heat proof. Not an electrician, so take all of this with a grain of salt. 

 

Personally, I'm going to wait to see what Polyscience says. 

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Deryn   

If you talk to them directly at all, Lord_Pall, perhaps you could also ask what they might recommend (if anything) as a 'home prevention measure' for a unit that has not yet had this issue, please.

I would guess they know by now that at least some units have had issues. Another question might be if there is way of identifying in advance a unit that might be susceptible and preventing this particular problem by being particularly cautious when doing ... what?

I am not an electrician either. I will probably have to have someone else do whatever may be recommend (if there is indeed anything). Would be nice to head this off at the pass if there is a good chance it may also happen on my unit because it will be difficult for me to return it now.

Thanks for the heads up. Sorry you are having to deal with this.

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dcarch   

That is a very bad design. Not surprised that there will be problems.

 

1. The shaded pole motor actually generates a lot of heat. 

 

2. The heating element is too close to the wiring and the motor.

 

3. They probably over sized a heavy gauge wire to connect to the heater to carry high current, but the heavy gauge copper also conducted too much heat to melt and eventually burn the plastic. Typically for high heat wiring, they would use fiberglass jacketed wire or Teflon jacketed wire.

 

dcarch 

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After a quick exchange with support, they're sending a fedex label so I can get it exchanged.

 

I think it was Breville support, and the exchange was very quick and positive. A great customer service experience, turning something I was genuinely concerned about into a non-issue. 

 

I have a followup email with them asking if the potential issue is resolved, or if there are best-practices to avoid this in the future.

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Deryn   

So happy to hear your issue is going to be resolved so smoothly! And thanks for following up as well.

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