Phase converter for Bridgeport
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  1. #1
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    Default Phase converter for Bridgeport

    I recently moved my Bridgeport J head (1hp motor) into my garage and am forced to use a phase converter to convert my 220 single phase into three phase power to power the machine .. The company that makes the converter said that I will lose 1/3 of the power .. I just don't know how this will affect the performance .. can anyone out there give me an idea of what to expect running my machine this way... any information would be greatly appreciated thank you ...

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    Sounds like you are looking at a static phase converter. Just my opinion... don't. I got one of those, even upsized it to handle Bridgeport and lathe. It worked exactly once. On the second start, there was a loud POP and oil leaked out of the bottom of the unit. Threw it away and bought a rotary converter. That was 6 years ago and never had a problem since.
    Bill

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    Get a Teco FM50 VFD and problem solved. Plus, you can fine tune spindle speeds with it. Static converter is garbage. If your going to run anything else, a rotary converter opens more options, especially with adding an extra idler motor if the rotary converter isn't rated for enough power. The VFD rout in my experience works great, but not worth it when you start getting past 3 HP machines. My rotary converter handles the 5 & 7.5 HP stuff, and VFD's control one of the lathes and one of the Bridgeport mills. My rotary was a cheap price used but waaayyyy to wimpy until I added two idler motors. Works excellent now.

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    With deference to the earlier posters, I run a simple static phase converter box on my knee mill (off of a 220v 1ph 20a circuit). Never had a problem. Sure it's de-rated on the hp, but I've never noticed.

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    Yes it's a static converter and it was given to me for free but I just don't like the fact that my machine won't be up to its full potential if in fact I will lose 1/3 power like they say,, that's why I'm asking anyone out there if they've operated their machine in this way to get an idea on what to expect,, whether or not I will have to make much smaller cuts just to get through things ... I just don't know what to expect without trying it

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    I just have the Bridgeport J head 1hp machine that I need converted.. all my other machines in my garage have 110 motors.. I had a Bridgeport M head that had the Device your talking about (FM50) but I never really knew much about it other than it did have the option to speed things up or slow them down but I didn't know whether or not I was getting the full potential of the 1/2 horsepower motor that was on the M head machine.. are you saying that if I installed the FM50 That my 1 HP motor will be at its full potential or will I still lose 1/3 of its power as if I use the static converter ..

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    I run my Bridgeport with an American Rotary rotary phase converter. True three phase power with no power loss. There are a number of brands out there, and I’m not shilling for any one brand. The rotary phase converters are more expensive than the static ones, but you don’t lose any power.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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    Just do it.
    So you lost some power, you don't have a 10hp spindle to start with.
    Go too deep and hard and you will stall anything even 50-100 machines.
    Don't like it and maybe try a VFD. And/or hang a 3hp motor up there.
    The "full potential" of a 1hp machine is not big. The full potential of a machinist is unlimited.

    You run what you brung and there is no shame. Get in, get your hands dirty and stop worrying about such details.
    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bellaru433 View Post
    Yes it's a static converter and it was given to me for free but I just don't like the fact that my machine won't be up to its full potential if in fact I will lose 1/3 power like they say,, that's why I'm asking anyone out there if they've operated their machine in this way to get an idea on what to expect,, whether or not I will have to make much smaller cuts just to get through things ... I just don't know what to expect without trying it
    I bought a bridgeport with a static converter already installed and run for several years. For convenience i left it hooked up and ran it. As a rule bridgeports aren't robust to begin with. I've stalled it twice if i remember correctly. That was getting a little aggressive with a drill. It grabbed breaking through. Both times i quickly shut it down. Other than that no problems.... yet. My use is fairly light. Mostly one off stuff, some very light production.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hodge View Post
    I bought a bridgeport with a static converter already installed and run for several years. ...... I've stalled it twice if i remember correctly. .....
    Only twice over several years? You are not pushing the edge much....
    This machine in any variation above all others "talks" to you in use.
    It stops when really unhappy, slows down when sad.
    Will take enormous abuse and like the dog locked in the trunk will lick your face afterwards.
    Bob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bellaru433 View Post
    Yes it's a static converter and it was given to me for free but I just don't like the fact that my machine won't be up to its full potential if in fact I will lose 1/3 power like they say,, that's why I'm asking anyone out there if they've operated their machine in this way to get an idea on what to expect,, whether or not I will have to make much smaller cuts just to get through things ... I just don't know what to expect without trying it
    Might just give it a try, what's the worse thing that could happen?
    Dan

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    if you already have it run it. im using a 2hp VFD on my BP i have it set up as a back up to my KMG belt grinder that is running the same VFD. if one goes down i can swap out in the matter of a few min and be back up and running. i need to buy another one for my little air compressor. if i was to add anymore 3ph tools to the shop i woudl get a large rotary converter and keep the VFDs for brake down backups. note i a knife maker not a machinist but i do need the bigger (for home use) tools now and then

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bellaru433 View Post
    I just don't know how this will affect the performance ..
    Even if you have full performance the mill will be vibrating and shaking, maybe not so much when bolted to floor.
    So don't worry about it, the mill does not do so well with heavy ops.

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    I have some static converters in storage if you need one. I think somewhere around 1hp or so. Free if you don’t have one yet.

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    FWIW, I have both VFD and rotary converters. My take is this: if you have to buy something, the motor needing three phase is 1 hp, and you have no ambition to add more three phase toys, don't hesitate, buy a VFD; some of them even run on 120v. OTOH, if you're going to add more three phase machinery, get a good rotary with plenty ofcapacity, run its output into a three phase panel for distribution, and be happy. Some might consider it overkill, but once done, you'll be glad you did.

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    Hi!

    I just purchased a new to me Bridgeport Series 1 2J head 2HP mill. It came fitted with a 440/220 3 phase motor. The motor plate indicated that it was also suitable to operate at 50 or 60 hz and that at 50 hz 240 volts it rotated at 1410 RPM and at 60 Hz 220 volts it rotated at 1740 RPM.

    I wired the motor for the lower voltage according to the name plate instructions and thus was going 220 single phase to 220/240 3 phase. I chose to use a VFD suitable for up to 3 Hp or 2.2 kW. The connection was easy and the motor runs very well. One thing that I found, however, is that the spindle speed was off if I ran the mill at 60 Hz. The 500 RPM in high was closer to 680 RPM. I decided to drop the frequency and run the motor at the 50 Hz parameters. This works great and the speed selection is pretty much right on. I use the variable speed on the mill as designed and still have some fine tweaking if required using the VFD. The VFD was pretty cheap as well at only $130 Canadian.


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