Elevator

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Current Status: Operational as of 09-13-2017

Note: not all services are fully functional, please refer to the information below.
For questions or repair inquires, email NB-Discuss or contact Zach at revoltrightnow ((*at*)) g'mail


The elevator is perhaps the jankyest and most dangerous thing we have at Noisebridge. Please do not use it unless absolutely necessary.[edit]


Excellent uses of the elevator include:

1) For disability access to the space (if you have visible or non-visible mobility impairment)
2) Taking out the NB trash on trash night
3) Taking in large donations to the space
4) Taking in or moving out large equipment or furniture
5) Taking out NB E-Waste
6) Closing the gates and doors /gently/

Unexcellent uses of the elevator include:

1) Bringing your bike up b/c you are too lazy to carry it up stairs
2) Bringing your bike down b/c you are too lazy to carry it down stairs
3) b/c you are too tired / drunk and don't "feel like walking"
4) Slamming the gates and doors loudly and repeatedly, either out of frustration or a latent display of machismo

Unexcellent uses of the elevator will result in verbal reprimand for a first offense. Repeated offenses will be brought up at NB meetings and discussion and will be taken seriously.


Basic Elevator Operation / HOW TO USE

  • Note: There is a white doorbell-type buzzer to the right of the call button if you need help at any time. It will ping the upstairs with a loud, obnoxious sound that will hopefully inspire excellent helping behavior.

The elevator has many "quirks." To operate:

1) Hold down call button on bottom (1st) floor for 1 second. (Holding longer than 1-2 sec. results in the elevator dipping 6" below threshold, making it hard to wheel things on). If the elevator dips and makes access difficult, see "Troubleshooting Tips" below.
2) Wait 2-3 min. for the elevator to come down. You should be able to see it through the small window on the door. (note, we should add an audible indicator)
3) Open both gates to enter. Do not slide the inside gate too far to the left or it may come off the track. If it does, buzz and ask for help.
4) Enter the elevator
5) Close both gates /gently/ making sure they both travel the full length of the track and are as flush with the door frame as possible
6) Press your desired floor button and hold for 1-2 sec. (Noisebridge is on the 3rd floor)
7) Pray
8) After a complete stop on the floor you desire, open both the inside and outside gate to exit.
9) Exit the elevator
10) Close both gates /gently/ all the way flush with the door frame so that the next person downstairs can call it.


Troubleshooting Tips:
1) The elevator can dip below the 1st floor threshold, making wheel (esp. wheelchair) access difficult. If this happens, close both gates and buzz for help. Someone will need to call the elevator to another floor or ride it down to you. In both cases they need to be sure to hold the "1" button for <2 seconds. Refer them to this wiki if they are unfamiliar with this issue (most people are right now).

2) The elevator will not call from any floor if the gates have not been opened and closed. Make sure to do this if you are calling it up or down to help someone.

3) Do not slide the inside gate too far left (street-facing door, 1st floor). This gate has many issues and can often get stuck on the track. If it does get stuck, Do Not Force It or bend it. Buzz for help. Then, with assistance, left it up at an angle the best you can to gently get it back on the track. Post to Slack or NB-Discuss with any issues so someone can help as well and we can document it.

4) If elevator doesn't call to a floor, have someone run down/up to check to make sure all gates and doors are closed shut. The elevator will not move unless this condition is met.

5) If the elevator door does not open on the first floor, you will need someone to call it on a different floor, ride it down onto the first floor, and reset the bumper (which tells the door when it's safe to open). There is a green sign pointing to the bumper. (Ruth: I'm sorry -- I know this isn't very helpful. I tried to take a video of Matt showing me how to fix the bumper, but I didn't press Record properly. I'll take a new video next time I'm in -- November 26)



Current Detailed Status as of 09-13-2017:
The elevator is in operation now, with most of the usual "quirks." Here is a list of what is fixed, what needs fixing, and what are some useful upgrades for the future.
Note, any and all of these repairs can be accomplished with basic electrical and repair knowledge of people at NB. There is nothing "special" about this elevator being old that requires unique repair knowledge. It has wires, nuts, and bolts just like anything else.

Fixed / repaired on 9/12/2017:
(Zach, Henner, Mike L. Paddy and others worked for 5.5hrs to repair the elevator on 9/12/2017)

1) Inside panel work: WD-40 added to all buttons, contacts somewhat cleaned, removed the dime that was glued in the panel, added hot glue to raise button height to reach switches, moved orange wire to the center pin of the key switch so that the 3rd floor is always active (key is disabled now, it is useless anyway). Dusted thoroughly.

2) Call button work (1st floor):
The 1st floor call button was coated in crap tons of dust balls. It had 3 wires originally, one now removed and insulated off to the side (presumably a grounding wire)? The switch was constantly shorting the other two contacts which made the elevator inoperable. This is likely due to an eroding rubber insulator under one of the screws, permanently shorting the contacts. The workaround that was done was to insulate the top head of the switch actuator where the short was traveling through. This was done with electrical tape and hot glue and should hold for a long time. The switch itself is fine and has very good action. Contacts were cleaned. Still needs light bulb. The frame was hot glued to keep closed right now however, a real mounting frame is desperately needed.

3) Gate work:
The front gate (street-facing) was in a horrible state of dis-repair. Two important metal brackets have been cut and are missing, and one very important pop-rivet is missing. As a result, the gate would not slide shut properly and constantly got stuck off the track. The workaround was to add a screw + nut for the missing pop-rivet and to add WD-40 to all the hinges to help with the other missing brackets. One piece of metal hanging off the frame edge was zip tied out of the way as well. The other gate was cleaned with lots and lots of giant dust balls removed from hinges and WD-40 applied. Additionally, the switch detection roller + plate was moved higher up to actuate the switch more easily. Without this the gate had to be held against the frame while the elevator moved which was very dangerous. Now the switch works as it should to detect the inside gate closed.


Repairs + Work Needed:

1) Metal brackets w/pop rivets for street-facing gate.
This is very important for keeping the elevator functioning. It looks like these were cut/went missing when the fire department came in around 7/17. Paddy volunteered to help machine new ones and I'm sure he could use some help with this. It is the most significant repair still needed and will require the most time. The pop-rivets shouldn't be too hard though.

2) Add workable frame + light bulb to bottom call box. DONE
The call box downstairs has no way of being mounted safely. As such, people can be shocked with a live 100V as it falls off the wall. It is held on by hot glue right now but that won't last long. It needs a wooden frame cut to mount permanently to the wall with occasional removable access for replacing the bulb. Henner offered to help with this but he is very busy and anyone with laser cutting skills could do this. Just measure the opening around the box and make ~2" thickness under the lip for mounting. Liquid nails should hold the wood down just fine.

3) Replace missing hardware for handles on NB-facing gate.
The handle bends out because there is a pop-rivet missing from this gate as well. If left this way the handle will eventually break badly. The hinges still need some TLC as well. Additionally, the 2nd floor door is missing a screw from the mounting handle.

4) Get schematics for the elevator:
Anyone know who to talk to for this?

5) Repair the floor sensor:
So then it will "know" ground level and stop dipping below it. Also, it won't need the doors opened and closed all the time to trigger the call buttons.

6) Get access to relay / breaker box for elevator:
This would help so much oing safe work and repairs.


Upgrade Ideas:

This elevator is old as dirt and could use some fairly simple upgrades. Here are some suggestions, feel free to add more:

1) Optical or hall-effect sensing for gate switches:
This is needed badly. Using 100 year old switches is stupid and causing many problems. They work now, but having a backup sensor system would be huge. There are many ways to do this. Contact Zach if interested in helping out.

2) Add an audible voice or sound for when the elevator has reached the desired floor.
This could be done with an Arduino and other circuitry. Aside from helping those with vision impairment, it would *greatly* reduce the confusion and madness in figuring out where the elevator is and what it is doing.

3) Add a plug to remove inside panel more easily:
This is a simple thing that would make working on the panel 10x easier, since the on/off switch is connected to two wires that are screwed in. It's a pain to remove right now.

4) Add handle/ cushioning for the inside gate (street-facing):
This is self-explanatory. That thing is painfully uncomfortable.

5) Add smooth covering under gate track:
Right now it is just metal grinding against metal which makes the gate damn hard to operate. Really anything to reduce the friction will help.

6) Add cushioning for the inside gate > door frame:
To reduce slamming sound and vibration. This is fairly easy to implement.


Safety Upgrades Needed:

Some basic safety upgrades would benefit us all. Here are some badly needed additions:

1) 2-way radio mounted inside the elevator:
any old walkie talkies would help to establish communication with stuck or trapped person(s).

2) Mounted signs informing passengers of most things in this wiki. DONE

3) An alarm to notify the upstairs that someone is stuck:
This, instead of the alarm that notifies the fire department..

4) LCD / visual display inside the elevator and outside:
to establish visual communication and reduce the feelings of being trapped.

5) Calming music and or imagery:
Again, to reduce anxiety and trapped feelings. The thing is scary to repair people, let alone the average rider.


Media from 9/12/2017 Repair:
All media plus videos, zipped. Hosted via mediafire
Elevator_missing_bracket_and_pop_rivet
Elevator_behind_pane
Elevator_gate_switch_height_adj
Elevator_switch_box


Update from 9/13/2017:
(Zach and Robin) did more work on NB elevator today including:

1) Painting over lots of old graffiti
2) Painting over the downstairs call box so it looks nicer
3) Using label maker for inside door instructions on street-facing door
4) Using label maker for elevator panel labeling
5) Posting signage for How To Use the elevator and Troubleshooting Tips (Robin assisted greatly!)
6) Posting ADA signs outside elevator call boxes

Media from 9/13/2017 Repair:
Panel_after
Door_inst
Painted_call_box
Reading_signage
Signage


Update from 10/13/2017:
(Zach) added a new call light (120V LED) to the downstairs call box. Also, additional signage was added. Noticing the 2nd floor gate detect switch is having issues. Requested help from another member to investigate at a future date.

Use the elevator buzzer if you need assistance, or if the call buttons do not work.

The elevator light fixture uses a GU24 base rather than a "screw-in" socket - it requires a 26 watt / GU24 base bulb (such as Eco-Stor model # P26SP-GU24/WW - about $6 + tax from Discount Builder Supply on 13th Street and Mission)


Update from 10/124/2017:
(Zach, Darryl, Kevin, Nick, and others) professionally repaired the bottom floor call box. We did:
1) Shop-vac cleaned out all the nasty dust balls
2) Fixed up all the wiring and soldered all connections instead of shitty crimps
3) Installed a Molex plug so that the harness can be easily removed for repairs in the future
4) Fabricated a new badass plexi-glass frame (thanks Darryl!)
5) Drilled a new mounting hole in the metal frame (to mount it to the plexi-glass)
6) Installed the frame into the plexi-glass secured via 2x bolts and nuts and
7) Drilled 5x woodscrews into the drywall to mount the entire assembly very securely





July 27 2010 Test report:

1st floor call button normally closed contacts were impacted with nonconductive dirt. Cleaning is performed with simple white paper, not anything else. Please, if you ever clean these call button relays do not use abrasives, they shorten the life of the relay. Also be sure to take voltage precautions since the switch has 120VAC across it.

When any call button doesn't work, the whole system doesn't work. Is that what is called 'failsafe'?

There's a PDF for an elevator test plan uploaded to the Noisebridge wiki for the elevator. Test monthly.

File:ElevatorTestplan.pdf