Wood thicknesser re-power in Australia (50hz)
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  1. #1
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    Question Wood thicknesser re-power in Australia (50hz)

    Hi all,

    I'm bringing an old woodworking machine to Australia that I owned and used in USA (prior to moving down under). The unit is a Woodmaster 725 which originally had a 7.5 HP, 1750 rpm, single phase 60 hz, 220v motor (which will not work in Oz at 50hz).

    I will be using this unit at a residential property that has a 50amp 220V single phase power supply available.

    I'm interested in running a single phase to three phase VFD and as large a 3 phase motor as possible given the input power supply I have (ideally 5.5kw / 7.5 Hp) but i'm flexible.

    The machine uses a simple belt drive from the motor to the cutter-head so I will be able to fit most motors into the unit and can gear it to suit my desired cutter-head speed using either a 1400 or 2800 rpm motor and appropriate pulleys.

    However, i'm having a hard time putting together all the numbers including weather or not I may need a voltage converter to jump 220v to 415v prior to bringing that into the VFD. Additionally, what ratings i'll need from the VFD to run the motor I end up selecting.

    Perhaps i'm making this all too complicated and I should stick with as large a single phase motor as I can get (i know Leeson makes a 50hz 5hp single phase unit) but the idea of running 3 phase and having the comfort of a "soft start" power up is very attractive and is my first choice if I can make it work.

    Can anyone help me sort out what might be the best option for this type of application?

    Many thanks in advance!

  2. #2
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    7.5 hp is well within a 50 amp service. The amp draw at 50hz will be a little greater and the rpm a little lower. Not enough that you will notice. I would use 40 amps as a rough guess for FLA at 240.
    Bill D

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    Just plug it in and run it.

    Monitor the motor temperature and amps. If they are too high, buck the input voltage down to 200 volts and try again.

    Also you can increase the motor's run capacitance by 10-20% to compensate for the reduction in frequency.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ex-Pat View Post

    I will be using this unit at a residential property that has a 50amp 220V single phase power supply available.

    However, i'm having a hard time putting together all the numbers including weather or not I may need a voltage converter to jump 220v to 415v prior to bringing that into the VFD. Additionally, what ratings i'll need from the VFD to run the motor I end up selecting.
    You know about the derate factor for using a VFD on single phase.
    -- A 7.5Hp motor does not equate to a 7.5Hp VFD. More like a 10 or 15Hp VFD.
    -- Transform 220v to 415v just for the sake of the VFD?

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    Why would you pay to haul that, all that way, and then spend even more to adapt it ?

    Can't you just buy local when you get there ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by johansen View Post
    Just plug it in and run it.

    Monitor the motor temperature and amps. If they are too high, buck the input voltage down to 200 volts and try again.

    Also you can increase the motor's run capacitance by 10-20% to compensate for the reduction in frequency.

    X2

    Just run it, a lot of motors are dual rated for frequency.

    Ed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by johansen View Post
    Just plug it in and run it.

    Monitor the motor temperature and amps. If they are too high, buck the input voltage down to 200 volts and try again.

    Also you can increase the motor's run capacitance by 10-20% to compensate for the reduction in frequency.
    X 3 ..the motor will run a little slower (about 300 rpm), but that can easily be over come if necessary (and unless I was on high production work etc etc etc, I doubt it would !)

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    If your still in the US go into one of your local stores and buy a suitable Buck Boost transformer, because if you come here and try to buy one they won't know what you are talking about, and size if for 240v.

    Jim

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    Quote Originally Posted by Limy Sami View Post
    X 3 ..the motor will run a little slower (about 300 rpm), but that can easily be over come if necessary (and unless I was on high production work etc etc etc, I doubt it would !)
    Thanks for the feedback everyone.

    I was under the advice, (from the machine manufacturer), and impression from reading on the topic, that using the original 60hz motor on 50hz power supply was a compete no no .

    I wish I had found this forum earlier as it would have saved me a fair bit of mucking around. Long story short on why i'm bringing this machine down to Australia - it has a lot of capabilities that most machines don't, AND purchasing items outside of the USA with its mega leverage buying power discount is a shock that most Americans will never fully understand (unless they move overseas and try it!).

    The machine is on its way to me already with no motor in it so i'll have to replace that down here regardless which sounds like a big mistake but it looks like I can get a 7.5hp motor for around $400 bucks. Oh well, live and learn.

    Guess i'll give up on the VFD 3 phase idea.

    Cheers,

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    Quote Originally Posted by rons View Post
    You know about the derate factor for using a VFD on single phase.
    -- A 7.5Hp motor does not equate to a 7.5Hp VFD. More like a 10 or 15Hp VFD.
    -- Transform 220v to 415v just for the sake of the VFD?
    Thanks Rons,

    From what I can find three phase motors running on 220v top out at about 5hp. To step up to 7,5hp (5.5kw) you have to use motors that require 415 power supply. Best way to do that is to run 415v into the vfd and get 415 3phase out.. Though, looks like I may end up sticking with a single phase motor in the end anyway.

    Cheers

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ex-Pat View Post
    I was under the advice, (from the machine manufacturer), and impression from reading on the topic, that using the original 60hz motor on 50hz power supply was a compete no no .
    Running a 60hz motor on 50 makes them run hotter. If the motor is marginal it may run too hot and destroy itself. Solenoids same-o.

    Running a 50hz motor on 60 hz is no problem. They just go faster.


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