The Remy System

The Remy Governing Generator System
In view of the necessity of getting work done quickly at certain seasons of the year night work is necessary. The starting and lighting system is intended to permit night operation of the tractor as well as to provide for the likely contingency of tractors being operated by women and youths who would not be physically able to perform the arduous labor of cranking the engine.

 The Remy company believes that since it is necessary to employ a generator, this generator may well be used for governing the engine speed especially because it can be so arranged as to provide settings for the various kinds of work and the various loads found in farm practice. The principle on which the governor acts may be explained as follows: Any rotating apparatus which absorbs power must have at least two members one rotating the other stationary and the absorption of power is due to reaction between these two. In order that the apparatus may absorb power it is necessary by some means to resist a turning action on the stationary member. This resistance to turning action may be provided either by rigidly supporting the stationary member or by opposing its rotative tendency by some flexible means such as a spring. An electric generator is an apparatus which absorbs mechanical energy and changes a large proportion of it into electrical energy. The two essential members of an electric generator are the rotating part the armature and the stationary part the field. The reaction between the rotating armature and the stationary field is due to the magnetism of the field and the current in the armature coils. At a given armature speed the tendency to turn on the part of the stationary field depends entirely upon the amount of mechanical energy absorbed which in turn depends upon the amount of electrical energy produced. Therefore by varying the amount of electrical energy produced we can vary either the resistance to turning or the speed at which this resistance will be realized.

The Remy Electric Co of Anderson Ind has brought out the Governor Principle. In the Moline Plow equipment this principle is utilized by having the stationary or field magnet member rotatably supported and the tendency to rotation resisted by a spring of predetermined pressure. The field magnet remains in its normal position until the speed of rotation has become such that the amount of magnetism in that field interacting with the armature ampere turns creates a rotative tendency sufficient to overcome the pressure of the spring and then the field magnet starts to rotate in the same direction as the armature. This frame is so connected to the carburetor throttle that any angular motion in the same direction as the armature closes the throttle and thereby decreases the amount of power which the engine can produce. If a different engine speed is desired it is necessary to change the magnetic strength of the field and this is done by inserting resistance in the field circuit or cutting it out .With increased resistance in the field circuit the magnetic strength of the field at a given armature speed is less so that the spring will cause a retrograde movement of the field magnet thereby admitting more fuel to the engine and increasing its speed. On the other hand with reduced resistance in the field circuit the field will be stronger at a given armature speed and close the throttle against the force of the spring.   This increase or decrease in resistance in the field circuit is accomplished by an adjustable rheostat.

 Rheostat and generator are of such dimensions that with the rheostat resistance entirely eliminated from the field circuit the spring pressure will be balanced by the field rotative tendency at about 500 rpm of the engine and with all of the resistance of the adjustable rheostat included in the field circuit the pressure of the spring will balance the rotative tendency of the field magnet at about 1500 rpm.

Generator Shunt Wound -The generator is a simple shunt wound type. A 36 in extension is brought out through the generator case or housing to which a lever is attached. The housing which supports the field magnets is mounted on trunnion bearings which allow the generator to turn through an arc of 30 degrees. The trunnion shaft is brought through the generator housing and a lever is placed on the outer end. This lever is connected to the governor valve and in turn is connected by a simple link to the carburetor lever. The Spring shown in the dashpot cylinder is so arranged that the generator body is forced around by it in the direction opposite to that of armature rotation which is clockwise when looking at the drive end and the connection of the lever to the throttle is so made that the throttle is open when at rest and the spring has rotated to the generator body on its trunnion bearing to this position. The revolving armature imparts a rotating motion to the field frame . When the controller is placed in any given position the corresponding speed will be maintained and if the motor speeds up due to decrease in load the magnetic drag of the field and the armature is increased causing the field frame to turn in the direction of armature rotation and close the governor valve. If the load is increased the magnetic drag is decreased allowing the field frame to be turned against rotation of the armature by a spring to which is also attached a piston operating in a dash pot to prevent too rapid movement of the arm controlling the governor valve. When the engine is started and the generator commences to generate current there is a magnetic drag on the field and at a generator speed of 600 rpm this is sufficient to overcome the spring causing the generator body to rotate in the same direction as the armature ie in a clockwise direction and to throw the throttle sufficiently to maintain this predetermined speed. There is a minimum speed regulation of 600 generator rpm for it is supposed that the generator will be driven at one and one half times engine speed therefore the low governing speed is 400 engine rpm. Any higher speed can be secured by merely inserting resistance in the field circuit by means of the adjustable rheostat.

The field rheostat which is in the control box is a resistance unit. It is composed of a length of German silver wire with ten contacts so arranged that connection may be made to any contact by a movable contact arm. The contact arm is carried on a shaft which is extended through the face of the control box and to which is attached the rheostat hand wheel affording a convenient method of controlling the contact arm. The ten positions of the hand wheel shown on the face of the control box indicate the ten steps of resistance in the rheostat.

 Position No 1 gives a governed engine speed of approximately 400 rpm while position No 10 gives a governed engine speed of approximately 1800 rpm. Any engine speed attained by placing the controller on a given position will be maintained because if the engine speeds up due to a decrease in load the magnetic pull of the field on the armature is increased causing the field frame to turn and close the throttle.

Voltage Varies with Speed- If on account of an increased load the engine slows down slightly the voltage and magnetic drag decrease and the spring opens the throttle maintaining the desired governed speed. If the load is reduced and the engine speeds up a few revolutions per minute there is an increase in the voltage and current output and a resultant increase in magnetic drag therefore the spring is overcome by the magnetic drag and the throttle is closed. The current output is automatically controlled and therefore is approximately 6 amp at all operating speeds. One and one half amperes are utilized for ignition while 4 amp are continually going into the battery. The starting switch is mounted on top of the motor and is provided with tunnels to take the end of 4 in steel conduit through which the starter cable is run.

The generator is enclosed in a cast iron case leaving a large inspection hole or hatch open at the top which is provided with a pressed steel cover with extremely wide flanges and drawn down by two bolts centrally located thus assuring a dust and water tight joint with the generator case. In the ignition distributor the principles of the Remy battery ignition design have been closely followed out. -modified excerpt from Chilton Automotive 1918

Started in 1896, Remy was tone of the largest manufacturers of magnetos and ignition systems. In 1916, United Motors purchased both the Remy Company and the Dayton Engineering Laboratories Company (Delco), Remy’s main competitor in electric starters. GM would purchase United Motors in 1918, and although operating under a single parent company, both Delco and Remy remained independent divisions. This ended in 1926 when GM forced the two divisions to merge into one, forming Delco-Remy.

The Remy Governing Generator System was unique in its time, and offered an option on the Moline that was rare even for automobiles of the day. Although the Remy System was advertised heavily and a special division was established just for it in Chicago in 1918, it met with limited success. The late model GMC SieveGrip tractors were likely the only other tractor built with the system while a few automobiles used the system.