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[How do I?] Wiring Up A Treadmill Motor (i Know, I Know)

Discussion in 'ELECTRICAL ISSUES - POWER YOUR MACHINES & SHOP' started by mattthemuppet, Jul 21, 2015.

  1. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    Hi all,

    I was recently the lucky recipient of a treadmill motor and controller (MC60 by the looks of it) from the very generous jpfabricator and I'm idly thinking about how to wire it up instead of working. I also have another motor from a treadmill that I found at the side of the road if my wife doesn't end up using it. Both 1 to 1.25hp, one to go on the drill press, one to go on my 618. I'll be setting up both machines with tachs and I'd like both to be reversible once I've modded the motor flywheels so they don't unscrew themselves.

    I've done a bunch of reading, but figured it would be best to have things checked out before ordering switches. 3 things I want to double check:

    1) To reverse the motor I need a DPDT switch between the controller and the motor, wired so that the polarity to the motor is reversed. Switch would be wired Forward-STOP-Reverse. Can I do this with power to the controller or do I need to cut the power to the controller first, then change reverse the motor?

    2) Speed control pot - 5k or 10k? Does it matter?

    3) I've read that these controllers require the speed setting set to zero before starting each time. A work around is to either remove a resistor (not sure which one) or to put a SPST switch on the wiper wire to turn the motor on and off. Only downside would that this would leave the controller energised (see Q1)

    Also, for that size motor, what current rating do I need for the switches. I'm thinking 10A from what I've read, but that's more guess than anything. Similarly, what fuse rating?

    I've sketched out a wiring schematic, please find any flaws I've made!

    thanks!

    IMG_3941.JPG
     
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  2. JimDawson

    JimDawson Global Moderator Staff Member Director

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    Matt, the only comment I can really make here is that I would not try to reverse the motor under power, it will try to change direction instantly. This would throw a heck of a load on everything both electrical and mechanical.

    Your diagram looks like it would work.

    I need to get up to speed on these MC60 controllers. I have one sitting within arms reach as I type this. Guess I'm going to have to do a little research then drag it out the the shop and play a bit.
     
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  3. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    Thanks Jim. I agree on the motor reverse and I've read several times that doing so with the controller powered up can toast it. There's tons of info on the MC60 controllers out there, even though the KB ones are supposed to be better, and they seem pretty simple. I just keep forgetting where I read certain things, like putting the motor on-off switch on the pot wiper, so I end up reading things over and over again! I need to start keeping notes :)

    Hopefully Ulmadoctor or Masteryoda will chime in as I've seen lots of comments by them on how to do this.
     
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  4. Kernbigo

    Kernbigo United States Active User Active Member

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    mc60 wireing.jpg mc60 wireing.jpg break the wiper wire on the pot than you can start at the speed you left it at from old setting, and install your motor start and stop switch
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2015
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  5. master53yoda

    master53yoda Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    My controller swaps between the mill and the lathe with both the speed control and the tach, I used the Machtach kit as it also calcs the feet per min for different size cutters on the mill and diameter workpieces on the lathe. I use 3 double pole double throw switches for the change over. one for the the sensor leads for the tach and the one that switches between the mill and lathe feeds the one that reverses the output. these could be connected either way. I also have a on off switch the switches the 110 to the speed control and the power supply for the tach. I have about $85.00 in it including the Machtach kit. the reverse switch is a " on-off-on" switch so that when I'm threading i can go to off and then reverse to back out the tap. The torque circuitry in the MC60 seems to handle taping very well.

    Art B
     
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  6. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    thanks Kernbigo! One of your earlier posts is where I got the idea from in the first place :) On the MC68 (updated MC60?) a resistor has been snipped in a white screen printed box saying "max 8mph" or something similar, so I wonder if that was done to disable the "turn speed to 0 to start" thing or for some other reason. I've read of people cutting a resistor on the board to do that, it's just hard to figure out which resistor! If not, then breaking the wiper wire to start the motor is the way to go.

    thanks Art, I was hoping you would chime in :) That's a sweet set up you have there! I'll be using one of those cheap eBay tachs, so nothing fancy but better than guessing. What does the dial next to the tach readout do? Control Machtach? Also, with reversing the motor for tapping (one of the things I want to do on the "mill", as well as metric threading on the lathe) do you turn off the motor by turning off the controller, then reverse, then power up the motor again or do you just hit the reverse switch (using the center "off" position to turn off the motor)? The latter would be much easier, but I don't want to blow up the controller!
     
  7. master53yoda

    master53yoda Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    i switch it to the off on the forward reverse switch. the knob on the tach is for setting the diameter of the cutters etc for the fpm readings and selecting between the tach and fpm. the mach tack kit is only 50 and was money well spent.
     
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  8. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    neat, thanks Art, that would make it a lot easier. I'll have to go read up on the machtach kit - I don't think it would be worth it for the lathe, but it would be really useful for the "mill".
     
  9. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    ordered the switches and rheostats, need to get some fuse holders and then figure out how to mount a pulley to treadmill flywheel. I want to keep the flywheel as it's also a fan for cooling the motor and should help a bit with interrupted cuts. My idea was to make a stub arbor with a matching thread (LH, don't know what pitch yet), then use a couple of set screws to prevent it from unscrewing on reversing the motor.
     
  10. randyjaco

    randyjaco Reserved Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Be aware that that fly wheel is probably just threaded on. The first time I reversed mine the flywheel unthreaded itself 8^0

    Randy
     
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  11. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    thanks Randy. I had a look at it and I thought it was a keyed press fit, but it wouldn't hurt to double check!
     
  12. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    good job you mentioned it Randy, freewheel was a screw on and it came off really easily! I might see if I can cannabalise a PC fan to slip over the shaft and then put the pulley on after that. it would certainly simplify things.
     
  13. hman

    hman Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    One word of caution regarding reversing a treadmill motor. The brush placement is optimized for one direction of rotation. Being a PMDC motor, it can of course be reversed. But it will be less powerful, less efficient in reverse. If at all possible, when you install it on a tool, arrange that the "forward" motor rotation runs the tool in the normal/most frequently used direction.

    PS - when I installed a treadmill motor on a drill press this last year, I wired the controller in parallel with the (110 volt) light. The original on/off switch was then isolated from 110 and used to interrupt the center wire on the speed control pot.
     
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  14. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    good point, I'm going to keep the original CW rotation for forward and CCW for reverse. I'm rigging up a fan on each treadmill to replace the flywheel and those will also work best CW.

    Tore out the motor from the treadmill I found (turns out it had an intermittent speed problem that nearly killed the wife!) and it's a USA made 1.5hp motor with a MC40 controller. Pulled the rheostat too and it runs just fine on the bench, although it took some heat to get the flywheel off. Used the same pot and power lead to test the one jpfabricator gave me (1hp and MC68) and that works just fine too. Little bit of sparking from one of the brushes so I'll check that out at some point. Going to put the 1hp on the lathe and the 1.5hp on the drill press.
     
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  15. jpfabricator

    jpfabricator United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I found the rheostat that came off that motor. If you need it I can drop it in the mail for you.
    Im still trying to find the pictures I told you I would send, just neen syrapped on time.

    Sent from somewhere in East Texas Jake Parker
     
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  16. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    that would be awesome Jake, thanks! that would be guaranteed to be the right value too. Don't worry about the wiring diagrams, I've got it pretty much figured out. I have a couple of things to do first then I'll work on the mounting brackets and boring the pulleys to fit. Very excited :)
     
  17. jpfabricator

    jpfabricator United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Be looking for a padded envelope soon. BTW we havent seen any pictures yet!

    Sent from somewhere in East Texas Jake Parker
     
  18. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    thank you so much! Ah, pictures. Not much to look at yet, but I'm getting there :)
     
  19. hmwhitehead

    hmwhitehead United States Harry's Workshop Registered Member

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    I have made this modification to 2 speed controllers, one on my drill press and one on my band saw. I just cut the lead on the Q6 transistor collector (looking at the flat face of the transistor, it is the lead on the left), or you can cut the lead on the 5.6K resistor attached to the collector. I left it in place in case I had to go back. Now I can start the motor at whatever speed the pot is set at. Works great. Drawing is attached.
     
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  20. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    neat, thanks for the info - could you attach the drawing again please? I found the resistor to cut on the MC68, it's labelled RPS3 and is right next to the speed pot terminals, but I haven't figured it out for the MC40. It's not a big deal as I can do what Kernbigo suggested and put an on-off switch in the wiper wire, but it would be a little more elegant I guess :)
     
  21. Mad Monty

    Mad Monty Iron Registered Member

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    Guess I'm late to the party, but here are a few things I've stumbled onto (or into) while working with several treadmill conversions. Others have mentioned some of them. Three sets of motors and controls are in use on my lathe, mill, and drill press; and there's one slated for the vertical bandsaw and possibly another for the horizontal. I love these things.
    1. Almost all the motors have flywheels with 1/2-13 LH threads. Nuts and taps are readily available.
    2. The easy way to get the flywheel off is to run the motor forward and then stop the shaft suddenly. The easy way to do that is to set up a SPDT switch in one side of the line, wired so in one position it feeds the motor, and in the other, it opens the line and shorts the motor. (See below for more on this.) I do have a couple of 3 HP motors that use a keyed shaft.
    3. The flywheel will add momentum to the tool, for better or worse. It's kind of like using a sledgehammer instead of an engineer's hammer. It's harder to stop, which I wouldn't like if I were tapping a hole because it could break your tap if it bogged down. In fact, I'd rather have a slip clutch for tapping.
    4. The flywheel usually has fan blades that provide cooling in proportion to the speed. But the main point of using a DC motor with PWM is that you can create a lot of torque at low RPM, and that takes a lot of current that produces a lot of heat. Better to use a PC fan that runs full speed all the time, with the bonus of continuing to cool the motor down after it stops. This is another reason to lose the flywheel.
    5. These motors have incredibly strong permanent magnets. They're great for cleaning up your chips and filings around the shop - they'll pick up every last little shard. Problem is, they weren't designed for machine shops. I put duct tape over the openings as soon as I can get to them, and don't take it off until you have to. Part of the retrofit requires making some sort of shield and screen to keep stuff from getting drawn in by the combination of magnetism, cooling airflow, and Murphy's Law.
    6. The pot is usually 5K and always linear. The value isn't critical, but I wouldn't go below 1K or above 10K without some electronics investigation. It's important that it be linear, not audio or log, to keep the speed proportional to how far you turn the dial. (If you're into that stuff, the reason the resistance isn't critical is that the pot is a voltage divider feeding a high impedance, carrying little current, so value is not a big deal. And with the other nonlinear pots, the speed changes pretty fast at one end, and pretty slow at the other.)
    7. Treadmills can be shut down by the feedback loop that tells the controller how fast the motor is going. The controller compares this with the speed control setting (pot) and cranks up or down the juice as needed to maintain the target speed, even as the load varies. That can be helpful for things like avoiding chipping carbide tips. Say you're milling an irregular piece of stock that isn't uniformly hardened (think case-hardened, or unseasoned cast iron, for example), and the speed is bogging down so you crank the pot and the speed comes back up. Then if you hit a hollow or soft spot, the mill speeds way up almost instantly, and you slide right through the hollow only to have the tips hit the case-hardened surface on the other side, and bang! Carbide doesn't like shocks like that - though it's really hard and takes hi temp beautifully, it just can't handle impact.
    8. Some controllers will shut the motor down if they don't get a signal back indicating that it's moving. Most treadmills use a magnet or stripes on the flywheel and a coil or phototransistor nearby on the frame to create the signal. Problem comes after you remove the flywheel and lost the signal generator. You can fabricate a substitute, too complicated to go into here, but I would be glad to explain offline.
    9. About stopping the motor with a switch: Actually, this is pretty effective. Here's how it works: a motor and a generator and one and the same, though optimized differently. A spinning motor generates a voltage proportional to its speed. If you disconnect the power and then put a low resistance across the motor terminals, current flows with the effect of slowing the motor down rapidly. I’ve got a kill switch on my lathe that does just this, and it stops the chuck in less than 1 second.
    10. Most switches and relays can't handle nearly as much current when it's DC as when it's AC. Look for switches rated at least 10 amps at 110 VDC. They can be hard to find, and you may have to settle for something less. Just be aware that they can overheat, open the circuit (cutting power to the motor), short the power (could fry the controller, although you can minimize the risk by putting a fuse between the controller and the reversing or shorting switch going to the motor; or - perhaps worst of all, it could flake out and suddenly turn on when you have it in the off position.
    11. Because unintended start-up could be disastrous to the operator, as well as the tooling, the machine, and the work, I would ALWAYS PUT A RELIABLE, ADEQUATELY RATED DPDT SWITCH IN THE AC LINE BEFORE THE CONTROLLER, IN A VERY HANDY LOCATION, AND ALWAYS SWITCH IT OFF WHEN NOT USING THE MOTOR. This is the only way to be sure the motor won't start up without warning.
    12. About opening the pot's center lead to turn the motor off: I would use the same AC line switch as above to kill the power absolutely for sure before assuming the motor will never start up on its own. I don't pretend to know a lot about machining, or everything about electronics, but I do have a lot of years worth of surprises and scars because I assumed circuitry was dead when it wasn't. Components fail, solder joints break - both aggravated by the vibration that machines inevitably create.
     
  22. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    Thanks for the amazingly thorough reply Monty, that's a great source of information. I think it would be worth sticking all this in a "how to" sticky post once I'm done as it would be a waste for all the info to be stuck somewhere in my thread.

    I think I've addressed most of your points, especially the extra switch to isolate the whole caboodle - that's the first one on the AC line in my sketch on the first page. I'll be using an illuminated switch so it should be easy to see if the controller is energised or not. All the switches I've bought are 110V 15A rated, so that should be enough - the fuse (which I'll be reusing if I can) off the treadmill I scavenged is 15A rated too.

    I'm replacing the flywheels with fans mounted to the motor shaft, but if I have trouble with cooling at low speeds I can always add a PC fan and wire it to the 12V supply for the tach.

    Almost finished making the adapter hub to mount a 120mm PC fan to Jake's motor. Screwed up the first one because I was tired, but this one fits perfectly. Need to tap a hole and make a set screw then that part is done. After that I need to bore out the pulley to fit and figure out a mount then the lathe motor will be ready for wiring up. I'm not sure how I'll stop chips getting inside other than the chip shield I plan on making for the lathe, but I'll ruminate on that.
     
  23. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    Got the hub done, which was a comedy of errors. Started with a perfect piece of scrap alu then turned it too small. Started again with some mystery steel round, hacksawed it off, faced off both sides, drilled hole for arbor then turned the OD down to an interference fit with the fan hub. Changed to outside jaws, drilled then bored the ID to a sliding fit on the motor shaft. Then drilled and tried to tap a set screw hole for a 10-24 screw, tap wasn't having any of it, so I had to drill oversize (after sharpening that drill!) and even then I was worried about breaking the tap. Lots of cutting fluid helped but it was still a b!tch. Then I couldn't screw the set screw it (made by cutting the head off a screw and then cutting a slit for a screwdriver), turns out I picked out the only M4 screw that I'd mistakenly put in the 10-24 drawer. Doh! Anyway, got it finished and pressed in to the fan hub. Slips on and works just fine, although I'll be attaching the fan frame to the motor too as most of the air currently comes off the side of the fan.

    IMG_3994.JPG IMG_3995.JPG IMG_3997.JPG IMG_3998.JPG
     
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  24. Ulma Doctor

    Ulma Doctor Infinitely Curious H-M Supporter-Premium

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    i'm a little late to the party but, nice work Matt!
    :aok:
     
  25. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    thanks Mike! thought I'd finished the pulley but when i put it on it had a ton of wobble, despite me boring and recutting the V in one set up. I'll add a couple more set screws so i can try and dial in the pulley better. i doubt I'd be able to make one from scratch any better - there's just not enough shaft to properly locate the pulley
     
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  26. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    Got the motor torn down, cleaned and mounted up:
    IMG_4010.JPG IMG_4011.JPG IMG_4012.JPG IMG_4013.JPG IMG_4014.JPG IMG_4015.JPG

    The treadmill rubber underneath helps a little, but I'll be bolting it to the bench on rubber grommets to cut down on a bit of electrical whine from the motor. I also realised that with a CW rotation the fan is pushing in both directions as it's rotating backwards and flipping the fan around makes it 100% pull, which is pretty ineffective for such a poor flowing object (moves a lot of air at 4000rpm though!), so I'll try running the motor CCW. The brushes are at right angles to the stator (commutator?) and there was no "set" to them that I could see when I took them out so it should be fine.

    Once I get the pulley done I'll get started on the one for the drill press.

    Any suggestions for control boxes? I was going to make them out of thin plywood with alu plate at the back (to bolt the drive to) and lexan at the front so I could see the lights on the controller board, but I'm not sure if I have any scraps around. Could always buy some I guess but, you know..

    edit: Jake may get a kick out of this, but the frame mount for the fan and the base for the motor were both from the bits of wood he used to pack the motor he sent me :)
     
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  27. JimDawson

    JimDawson Global Moderator Staff Member Director

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    Nice job Matt.:encourage: I would either buy or build a metal box, just for fire safety.
     
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  28. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    thanks Jim! Good point about the box, hadn't thought of the downsides of wood and electrics :) I'll wander down to HD and see what they have and to get some ideas.
     
  29. jpfabricator

    jpfabricator United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Im glad the packing worked in your favor! The pot should be in on or before Thursday .
    When I initially found it I " put it where I would remember it" after scouring the shop twice I remembered it was in the house. :confused:
    You might consider a tin bread loaf pan for an enclosure.
    Sent from somewhere in East Texas Jake Parker
     
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  30. mattthemuppet

    mattthemuppet Active User Active Member

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    awesome, thanks Jake! Good idea on the bread pan too, there are loads of those in the kitchen :)

    got the pulley wobble mystery figured out - it was run out in my 3 jaw of about 3 thou. Took a while with the DTI to figure out what was going on, but ended up with the 4 jaw on instead. I have to re-cut the V of the pulley to true it, but I'll get to that tonight and I'll do the other pulley too which has a fair bit of wobble in it.
     

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