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Izzy

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I hope this is in the right forum, I got my first machine recently its a Bridgeport series 2. It has a 4hp, 4j head I believe (correct me if I'm wrong I am just starting out!) The motor says it can br wired 230 or 460 and is currently wired for 460vac 3phase. Currently I only have 230 single phase, now I know about reconnecting the wires in the head to make it run on 230vac however I was told If I rewired for 220 I would have to change the heaters, fuses and re-wire the transformer for 230vac aswell is this correct? I plan on using either a vfd or rpc to sort out the 3 phase issue. Would it be cheaper to just get a transformer to go along with the vfd/rpc? I have photos if that helps!
 

talvare

Ted A
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Yes, if the mill has a magnetic starter with heaters, you will have to change them and fuses for the appropriate current rating for 230V operation (the current draw will double when changing from 460V to 230V). I'm not sure what the function of the transformer is for your mill. If it only powers auxiliary 115V devices (axis drives, lights, etc.) or a 115V control circuit, you will have to change the line side tap from the 460V connections to 230V connections. The secondary taps will remain on the 115V connections.Also, if you use an RPC to run your mill, make sure not to connect the "generated" leg to the primary of the transformer.
Hope this helps

Ted
 

Izzy

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Yes thank you that does help! How would I go abouts checking to see if it has a magnetic starter?
I believe the autofeeds get power from the machine itself maybe this is what it's for? I know I saw a big transformer in the control panel on the machine, I have pictures of that aswell if that helps?
How hard is it to change the heaters? Would i be better off just hiring an electrician or would it be cheaper to get a 220 to 460 volt transformer and leave the machine how it is?
Is there somewhere I could download manuals for this thing? It came with wiring diagrams but a manual would help alot!
 

eeler1

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Can't help with your question, but for a first machine, you done pretty good.
 

mksj

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An RPC could work with what you have, you would need to switch out the fuses and motor overload relay. The challenge is all the ancillary electronics. These might run off a specific tap from the transformer, if that is the case then you just need to switch the transformer input tap. A VFD would be a completely different picture, it is directly connected to the motor and you use low voltage switching to run the direction. Easier in some aspects of not needing contactors, overload relays, etc., but essentially you are gutting and doing a complete system build. Also looks like there is a quill power feed, as well as knee, X axis, and a coolant pump that is 3 phase. You would need to address all the systems voltages. I would check to see if there is a manual or schematic, it may give some guidance on what is required to switch voltages, I think doing that and going with an RPC would be a good route to consider first.

Manual is available for download, will check to see if there are any details on the electrical.
http://www.industrialmanuals.com/machine_manuals/pdfs/bridgeport seriess II standard milling machine installation,operation and maintenance.pdf
 
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talvare

Ted A
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IZ,
I am not familiar with your particular machine and without having a good electrical schematic for this machine, I would have to do a lot of speculating, which generally isn't a good idea with industrial controls. Based on the photo you posted of the electrical panel there are a few things I can determine. The three fuses in the upper right corner are on the main disconnect switch for the machine and those are the main fuses. These will have to be changed when you convert to 230V supply voltage. Directly below these fuses appear to be a reversing magnetic starter (or simple reversing contactor). If there are heaters, this is the component that will house them. They would also have to be changed. In the upper left corner are five more large fuses which I can only guess are a set of three for a three phase power source to possibly the table drive motor and a pair of two for possibly a single phase power source for maybe a coolant pump. There are several smaller fuses that are likely protecting various control circuits. In the lower center of the panel is what appears to be a solid state controller, very likely for the table drive motor/motors. Without a schematic, this is all guesswork and really of no value. It sounds like you are not familiar with industrial controls, so my first suggestion would be to get an electrician that is. You don't want to hire a general home type electrician as they generally wouldn't be familiar with industrial controls. Secondly, unless you want to tackle the job of completely updating that electrical panel and its electronic controls, I would not recommend using a VFD to power this machine. An RPC should work just fine, but as I said, you need a schematic so you can determine what changes (heaters, fuses, wiring connections, etc.) need to be made.

Ted
 

Izzy

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Thanks Ted, so your thinking I'd be better off leaving the machine how it is getting a 220-460VAC step up transformer and a RPC?
I did a little digging and I found out that the transformer inside the panel is infact for the axis motors as they run 90VDC. The machine came with the factory wiring diagram and and a chart for the heaters. Your absolutely right about me experience with industrial controls I'm a mechanic by trade though so I'm not completely cluess on electronic stuff and ohms law. Anything I can do myself I'll try anything more involved I'd be getting an electrician
 

talvare

Ted A
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IZ,
Using a step-up transformer is one option, but it's not the route I'd take if it were mine. (doesn't mean it's wrong, just not my preference) The old saying that "there ain't no free lunch" also applies to electricity. Using an RPC to power your machine induces electrical losses. Using an RPC and a step-up transformer will compound those losses. Also, those step-up transformers can be pricey. Making the necessary changes for the machine to operate on 230V shouldn't be that difficult, we just need some accurate, dependable information on that existing control panel, especially a good schematic. The last thing you want to do is let the smoke out of those "old school" electronics. Replacements probably aren't easy to come by.

I tried to zoom in on your photo of the control panel, but things just get too fuzzy for me to decipher any detail. Can you post a photo of the wiring diagram you have ? If it is clear enough to read accurately I should be able to help you with this.

Ted
 

Ulma Doctor

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I would not take the step up transformer route if it were my machine when a RPC is so simple to build
heaters and fuses are easy to change
the control transformer is easy to switch to 230v operation
there are newer components to replace any old school component that may be faulty

your transformer may have have some funny number/letter combinations
H1,H2,H3,H4 are all line connections
X1,X2,X3,X4 are secondary voltage
mostlikely your secondary voltage is 115vac, common for machine control voltage.
you can verify the coil voltage from any of the contactors, there is usually a legend plate that specifies voltage on the contactor itself

you'll retap the main motor for 230v operation
retap transformer
change your heaters to double capacity as you will pull twice the amps at 230vac
hook up RPC and make chips!
 
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Izzy

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@Ted, of course I can upload the wiring diagrams! The machine is being stored at my parents house as they live in the country and have the space for it so I won't be able upload them until I get a chance to get out there.
@Ulma Doctor thank you! That's the kind of straight forward and to the point kind of answer I've been looking for, doesn't seem as hard as everyone's been making it out to be when u put it that way! The transformer inside the machine puts out 90VDC I believe as that's what the axis motors run on does that sound about right?
I'll upload the wiring diagrams as soon as I can thanks for all the help guys! :)
 

mksj

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The axis motors are most likely DC, the transformer puts out AC to the axis controllers which convert them to variable DC. I agree with Ulma Doctor, most of the machine controls run off the secondary from the transformer, the input voltage is often set by the 4 terminals to the transformer. Connection for 460VAC is usually terminals 1 and 4 with a jumper from 2 to 3 (windings are serially connected), connection for 230VAC is power to terminals 1 and 4 with jumpers from 1 to 3 and 2 to 4 (windings are in parallel). Other transformers have taps for the different line voltages, so usually simple to adjust the input voltage. You will need to check the power down feed, as it is an accessory and not sure how it connects in. If you can get a specific schematic for this machine that would help. A step up transformer could be pricey unless you can find something used, probably need a 5KVA. AN RPC would be the best power source to convert to 3 phase, and maintain all the machine functions.
 

Ulma Doctor

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in picture 3, i'm making the assumption that it is the spindle motor...
you will need to reconfigure those taps
T4,T5,T6 are connected and secured together
T1,T7 and one input leg- go together
T2,T8 and one input leg- go together
T3,T9 and one input leg-go together
tthe spindle motor is now tapped for 230v 3 phase operation
 
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talvare

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@Ted, of course I can upload the wiring diagrams! :)
This is the first and most important step. Converting the machine to operate on 230v shouldn't be difficult, but you don't want to overlook something and cause damage to any of the electrical equipment. The schematic will help to insure nothing is overlooked. For instance, those five fuses in the upper left corner of the panel are protecting SOMETHING, what, I don't know but possibly the power down feed motor, coolant pump, etc. If those auxiliary motors are also currently wired for 460V operation, they will also have to be re-configured for 230V and the fuses changed as well. I'm just trying to make the point that it's important to be thorough in making the change over to 230V.

Ted
 

Izzy

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of course i agree completely! this is my first machine so i wana make sure im doing everything right i got it for a steal at a machine shop auction and i know there would be no other way i would have been able to afford something like this so i deffinetely dont want to screw anything up! lol i wont be able to get the wiring diagrams up until next weekend when i visit mom and pop ( and the machine of course :p ). yall have been a real confidence boost though! the last forum i was on all i kept hearing was "google it" or "you're way in over your head" all i was asking for was a little help like i did here and they just shut me down but a simple explanation like i got here and it all makes sense and seems alot easier than what they made it out to be!
in the mean time where do i find endmills and parts for the machine? im gonna take a guess and say ordering online is my best bet?
 

Ulma Doctor

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when someone tells you to google something, that means that they have no idea on how to help you.
they are intimidated by their lack of understanding and rather than learn something themselves the'd rather pass the buck,
if you'd know the real truth.

your conversion will be only as hard as you make it
there are some things to be learned but none of them, my friend, are out of your reach.
get verification if you do not know how to do something, but do not let it be a barrier to success.
i'll be happy to assist you in getting it to make chips, i'm sure that other members can and will help out as well
you are not alone
 

Izzy

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I can't wait to get this thing up and running! :D thanks for all the support guys I'll post up those diagrams as soon as I can!
 

Izzy

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Alright guys time for an update! Got around to getting lots of detailed pics of everything and brought the wiring diagrams home with me to study over. After a detailed Inspection on the machine its clear its a little rough and needs some work. Let me know if you guys think it's still salvageable the knee way is pretty rough. The table has a couple dings and a few scratches but I think it might just need some elbow grease, there was however alot more rust build up on the table than I thought alot of it cleaned up with wd40 and a scotch before but the dark areas are rusted enough that when I attempted to witness file the table it just caked up my file with rust!

IMG_20161003_092640.jpg
 

Izzy

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And some close ups of the electrical.... I have a whole bunch of detailed pictures if any more are needed

IMG_20161002_020155.jpg

IMG_20161002_020254.jpg

IMG_20161002_020406.jpg

IMG_20161002_020426.jpg
 

Izzy

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Forgot to mention it looks like it's a 4 wire motor atleast thats all I saw when I opened up the junction box...
 

Ulma Doctor

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sorry i have a crazy job schedule- i saw the pictures
i can't really read your fuse amp sizes, but they are most likely relatively low
the contactor coils will need to be appropriate for your control voltage
i see that the input for the dc control unit is 115v and the transformer is 115v output
i could not clearly see the contactors, a slight close up of them side by side may help out
sorry for the delay in reply
 

Ulma Doctor

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Forgot to mention it looks like it's a 4 wire motor atleast thats all I saw when I opened up the junction box...
are we talking about the spindle motor or another motor?
 

Izzy

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Hey no worries no rush just didn't wana get left behind lol. I'll be at the machine again this weekend and I'll be able to take more pics, the contactor is the thing with the white reset button right?
Yes I was talking about the spindle motor the male plug/wires lead Into the junction box and just connect to 3 wires and one to ground

IMG_20161002_161722.jpg
 

talvare

Ted A
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Sorry for the late response. Just haven't had time to get on the forum lately. Anyway, you will need to re-do the connections in the motor junction box. The wiring diagram is on the lower right corner of the motor name plate. You will wire nut number's 4, 5, and 6 together. Then wire nut #1, #7 and L1 together, then #8, #2 and L2 together, then #9, #3 and L3 together (L1, L2, and L3 are your three phase power supply to the motor). I'm having a very hard time trying to read details on the wiring diagrams and various electrical components in the control panel. I'm going to see if I can enlarge the photos and I'll get back to you.

Ted
 

Izzy

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@Ted I think the pictures may be getting blurry after uploading is there a way to directly send them to you?
As for the motor wiring, there where only 3 wires coming out of the motor are the other 6 inside? I'm gonna take some of the covers off this weekend to get a better look at everything.
 

talvare

Ted A
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Izzy,
I think you're going to have to make another attempt at getting some higher resolution photos of those wiring diagrams. They look like good diagrams but I just can't read the lettering and numbers. You may need to take close-up shots in sections and then we'll try to arrange them properly to compose the complete wiring diagram. You mentioned that you had a chart for the heaters. That should give you the info you need to purchase new heaters for 230V operation. In case you don't know, the heaters are the little blocks with two screws in them that the T1, T2 and T3 wires are connected to on the bottom of the reversing starter in your photo. I think those are Allen-Bradley magnetic starters. You'll need to read the data plates and verify that. The heaters have to be the same brand as the starters because different manufacturers components won't interchange. I'll keep trying to come up with more info for you and report back.

Ted
 
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