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Discussion Starter #1
So i just bought a 3pin and 4 pin Antec TriCool 3 speed cooling fan for my new setup and am not quite sure how i would go about powering it... Any suggestions? I have an old computer i can salvage stuff from and i would like to not have to cut the cord on the fan unless i have to. any way i could hook it to USB? ive read that the fans are usually 12v and the usb is only 5. i would be hooking the usb up to a power strip through an iphone outlet usb thing most likely. Any suggestions!?
 

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going through some old toys in my closet to look for some battery housings, i cam across a charger for something and when i looked at the output for it, it was +12VDC/1.25A. Since this, like the fan, is 12 volts can I hook this up to it?
 

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going through some old toys in my closet to look for some battery housings, i cam across a charger for something and when i looked at the output for it, it was +12VDC/1.25A. Since this, like the fan, is 12 volts can I hook this up to it?
That should work; check the current draw on the fan -- you want the power supply to be rated at least 10% more than the draw on the fan.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
That should work; check the current draw on the fan -- you want the power supply to be rated at least 10% more than the draw on the fan.
I have no clue how i would do that. i stripped the wires on the power supply and it was a bronze colored wireing. I hooked one end to the red and one to the black of an older spare fan from my old computer and pplugged it in and nothing happened.
 

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There's often a sticker on the fan that will show the current draw; 1.25 amps should be plenty for most any modern fan I think; better safe than sorry if you can find the info though.

If you have a multimeter you may want to check to see which wire coming off the power supply is positive and which negative; fans often won't run with this reversed (I've heard some will be permanently damaged by wiring backwards, but I've not had this happen, luckily). Failing being able to test the polarity, you might try just reversing the connections and crossing your fingers...
 

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There's often a sticker on the fan that will show the current draw; 1.25 amps should be plenty for most any modern fan I think; better safe than sorry if you can find the info though.

If you have a multimeter you may want to check to see which wire coming off the power supply is positive and which negative; fans often won't run with this reversed (I've heard some will be permanently damaged by wiring backwards, but I've not had this happen, luckily). Failing being able to test the polarity, you might try just reversing the connections and crossing your fingers...
the fan i was testing it on says 12v .25amp
 

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the fan i was testing it on says 12v .25amp
That supply would handle four of those pretty well. If you get the polarity correct, you should be good to go (assuming that the fan and supply are both good; I've occasionally stumbled on a dead power supply out of my parts box...)
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)

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Discussion Starter #9
this is what im working with. Would it work to take the black wire and put it in the hole that is connected to the black fan wire like so(picture 2)? and same with the red and then i could use silicone, or electrical tape, or super glue, or something to secure that in? would that work or should i cut off the 4 pin connector and just work with the bare red/black wire
Then additionally where would i attach an on/off switch?



 

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Ta-da!


Put the switch (2 pole toggle switch) on the red wire (positive). Be careful just wiring fans any which way - wiring the fan 'backwards' can cause some to short out.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ta-da!

james67.wmv - YouTube

Put the switch (2 pole toggle switch) on the red wire (positive). Be careful just wiring fans any which way - wiring the fan 'backwards' can cause some to short out.
so for the switch it goes from red to red like this?

Red----[switch]----Red

how about powering it? should i just strip the red and black wire from the fan or can i put it in the 4pin parts that correspond to the red and black?
 

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Yep, you got it.

Wire it together like in the video. If you don't want to/can't do it like in the video use quick connects or crimp on connectors, cover these in heatshrink tube or a nice wrapping of electrical tape just in case

posted from my phone - sorry for any errors
 

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Looks like you're set on the switch. You can place it so that it interrupts or completes the circuit on either wire -- it's just like unhooking that wire.

That said, you may want to consider instead putting the power supply on an extension cord with a switch instead; a lot of these little power supplies suck down electricity whether the device they're attached to is turned on or not. It's not a lot of juice, but every little bit adds up on the electricity bill.

(I tend to put my fan power supplies on the same timer that my lights are on, so that when the lights power off, the fan does as well.)
 

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I would be hesitant to recommend wiring up a switch on the household voltage (via a switch in line with an extension cord) for a person who seems very inexperienced with electronics. Our 240v air conditioner drew less than 0.0001v with the breaker off(replaced a fuse last night). I'll have to give this a try with a wall wart and switch tomorrow when I've had some sleep. My personal rule is no using power tools or messing with electricity with less than 4 hours of sleep :)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
That said, you may want to consider instead putting the power supply on an extension cord with a switch instead; a lot of these little power supplies suck down electricity whether the device they're attached to is turned on or not. It's not a lot of juice, but every little bit adds up on the electricity
what do you mean an extension cord with a switch? And you are correct steve I am somewhat in experienced but!!! My friends dad go lives less than a block away is an electrician so I can always have him double check it. And besides me and that friend managed to make a lighted alarm out of an extension cord and an outdoor sensors light. We had it so that when anyone got into he sensors area it triggered the light, but we made it so the light was long enough to be inside and the person outside wouldn't know. Someone kept stealing the change from our cars so we went stealth. Had a camera hooked up outside and to the tv so when the light went off we switched to the camera and watched what was happening hahaha
 

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I would be hesitant to recommend wiring up a switch on the household voltage (via a switch in line with an extension cord) for a person who seems very inexperienced with electronics. Our 240v air conditioner drew less than 0.0001v with the breaker off(replaced a fuse last night). I'll have to give this a try with a wall wart and switch tomorrow when I've had some sleep. My personal rule is no using power tools or messing with electricity with less than 4 hours of sleep :)
Whoops, I should have been more clear -- wasn't suggesting wiring up a switch on the extension cord itself, just buying an extension cord from the hardware store with a switch already on it -- you can find them at Lowes or HD for a couple of dollars, usually; they're handy for devices that don't already have a convenient power switch.
 

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what do you mean an extension cord with a switch? And you are correct steve I am somewhat in experienced but!!! My friends dad go lives less than a block away is an electrician so I can always have him double check it. And besides me and that friend managed to make a lighted alarm out of an extension cord and an outdoor sensors light. We had it so that when anyone got into he sensors area it triggered the light, but we made it so the light was long enough to be inside and the person outside wouldn't know. Someone kept stealing the change from our cars so we went stealth. Had a camera hooked up outside and to the tv so when the light went off we switched to the camera and watched what was happening hahaha
Here's an example from Amazon -- most of them are cheaper than this, but this one had a better picture.
 

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Yes the amps is the thing to look at on any 12v power supply. It needs to be more as the fan, which is listed on the label somewhere. Also, watch the humidity levels closely! A fan can dry out the tank in no time. I have mine on only for a few minutes at a time in each of my 29 gallon tanks and I would NOT recommend using a timer, if it malfunctions and you are gone for a few hours your frogs are good as dead.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I should be fine. The fan is not outside the tank blowing in, it is inside the tank circulating the air.
 
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