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Thread: Speed control with a drill press?`

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
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    Speed control with a drill press?`

    Hey guys,
    Myself and a fellow woodworker where I work, were talking and he wondered aloud about variable speed drill presses. So the question...Does anyone know if you can use a seperate speed controller (meant for a router)with a drill press (3/4 hp General)?

    Thanks
    Derek

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Fontucky, California
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    430

    Vs

    Only if it has a universal motor, which I highly doubt. I'm no expert, but I believe that you cannot get electronic variable speed out of an induction motor unless the motor is 3 phase and you have a variable frequency drive converter.

    This is the setup I have on my saw/shaper. Single phase input.

    Regards,

    John

  3. #3
    I asked a similar type question in the past, but it was if I could use it on a benchtop type jointer. The answer I got was yes it would work as long as the motor was not a "soft-start" motor.

    Of the drill presses I have seen, you can move the drive belt onto a different pully to change the speed if your drill press has this.
    Last edited by David Prince; 01-15-2010 at 2:42 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
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    153
    Yes with his press you can change speeds by changing the belts, but he wants it to be infinitly variable...and able to go slower than the manufacturers lowest setting achievable with the pulleys.

    This is the controller he is thinking of...

    http://busybeetools.ca/cgi-bin/picture10?NTITEM=B1850

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Toronto Ontario
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    6,556
    Derek, as the Busy Bee ad states "for use with brush type motors".

    You cannot use this controller on an induction motor.

    If you want electronic variable speed for a drill press, your friend will have to change the motor to a 3 phase motor, and install a Variable frequency Drive (VFD).

    Regards, Rod.

  6. #6

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Fontucky, California
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    Motors

    Quote Originally Posted by David Prince View Post
    Both this one and the one the OP showed are for use with universal motors. Sounds like your benchtop jointer had a universal motor.

    They will not work with induction motors.

    Sorry.

  8. #8
    Found this:


    Portable tools with universal motors often are variable speed, meaning they have the internal electronic circuity that allows it to run at different speeds. For some tools like single-speed routers you can get aftermarket speed reducers that are quite effective. Inductions motors can't have their speed reduced the same way. Many induction motors can be wired to turn clockwise or counter clockwise, and can be wired to use 120V or 240V, but an induction motor can only turn the speed it was designed. You can't make it run slower by reducing it's voltage. Well, you can, sort of. Lower the voltage, with a light dimmer switch. In a few minutes, the motor will heat up. After the fire in the motor is extinquished you will have reduce the speed to zero, permanently. That's a sure fire way to "let the smoke out of a motor".
    Last edited by David Prince; 01-15-2010 at 4:21 PM.

  9. #9
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    Dec 2005
    Location
    Fontucky, California
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    Article

    David, that's true in a simplistic way. Induction motors are quite capable of variable speed, but you need a three phase motor, which many home shop enthusiasts don't want to mess with due to the need for an inverter.

    Regards,

    John

  10. #10

    Angry

    I'm sorry but I'm going to have to disagree with the notion of induction motors needing to be 3phase to be variable speed.

    The speed of an AC motor is not a product of voltage but rather of frequency and pole pairs. Changing the speed can be done quite simply with the use of a triac, 555 timer, and about $30 at Radioshack. The problem is that the voltage will not be a true sine wave, which will probably not be a problem for you.

  11. #11
    In short No, You can not use a router control on a drill press. A router control is only for universal motors like on a router, shop vac or a household vacuum sweeper.

    Shopsmith is a variable speed drill press but the accomplish this by a "Sheave Assembly" a pulley like part that changes size.

    Here is a link if you want to read more.

    http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t=129102
    "Remember back in the day, when things were made by hand, and people took pride in their work?"
    - Rick Dale

  12. #12
    You can switch it out to a dc motor and use a speed control also.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Houston, TX
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    104
    Variable Frequency Drives have plummeted in price over the last few years...you can get a 1 hp 115V single phase to 230V 3-phase for as little as $150 now.

    I'm often surpised that people still "write-off" 3 phase equipment when it is now incredibly cheap and simple to run them with a VFD. Unless you have a really big motor or a shop full of 3 phase tools, the days of rotary phase converters or utility-provided 3 phase are over.

    Not only will the VFD give you variable speed control, but you can also use it for electronic braking of the motor when you turn it off, which is most helpful on a something with a lot of rotating mass, like a lathe or large bandsaw. I just purchased an old VS6 Rockwell variable-speed drill press, which came with a single phase motor, but I went and found a replacement 3 phase motor (for $50) so I can use a VFD to get it below its current 450 rpm minimum.

    The only theoretical downside to a VFD is that, as you slow down the motor, you also slow down its cooling fan, but I've never heard of this being a problem.

    See also:

    http://wiki.owwm.com/Default.aspx?Pa...ookieSupport=1
    Last edited by Will Rowland; 01-16-2010 at 12:03 PM.

  14. Torque

    When changing pulleys you not only reduce speed, but also increase torque. No speed controller will increase torque and most of them will decrease torque. If you have plenty of torque, a speed controller might work, but if you think you can reduce speed of a half-horse motor to use a 3" hole saw on maple, nope. What you can do to increase torque is install a gear motor. But this is expensive and it would be better to just get a bigger drill press. Also, you have to be careful doing this kind of modification because the entire press is designed for the motor it came with.

    I installed a fractional horsepower DC gear motor and speed controller on my band saw to cut steel. But, I got the gear motor free and got the $400 controller on eBay for $60.00. If I had paid full price for the gear motor and controller, I could have bought a wood and steel cutting saw for the same price. When I want to cut wood, I change the belt to the direct drive motor.

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