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  1. #1
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    Emco Turn 242 Retrofit

    I recently purchased an Emco turn 242 from a local school. Everything seems to be in good condition on it. Im upgrading it to a newer control and electronics. Im curious about keeping the spindle motor if there is a way to control it with a VFD. Ill post a picture of the motor plate. I found some VFD's that claim they are for 11kw motors. 220v single phase in 380v 3 phase out. Has anyone seen motors of this size ran off single phase power with a VFD?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 20211010_215244.jpg  

  2. #2
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    Re: Emco Turn 242 Retrofit

    It is 4 speed motor. i would change it for new one. Connecting it with VFD can be possible, but not necessary. If (as I assume) it is brushed AC motor, frequency control wil not work properly with it. More probably U can control it with voltage, so U would need some programmable transformer.

  3. #3
    Community Moderator Jim Dawson's Avatar
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    Re: Emco Turn 242 Retrofit

    That's quite a motor. I agree with steryd, I would replace the motor. 11KW is pretty large to run on single phase. I have a similar sized machine and it had a 7.5kW spindle motor/VFD that I replaced with a 7.5kW servo motor so I could have a full C axis. Since I replace the original spindle motor, I have not seen the load meter go over 29%, where the original motor used to run 60 to 110% load pretty consistently. The original spindle motor was rated at 5000 RPM, but the servo motor is only rated at 3000 RPM. In my case it's no problem because for my parts I never run over 2500 RPM. The torque curve on the servo motor is much better than the original motor.

    I only have single phase, 240V power in my shop, but I run the lathe with a rotary phase converter.
    Jim Dawson
    Sandy, Oregon, USA

  4. #4
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    Re: Emco Turn 242 Retrofit

    Thank you all for the advice. Ill go ahead and replace the motor. I will probably go with a 7.5kw motor. Is there any benefit in going with a servo on the spindle if i dont need positional control? My turret doesn't have live tooling.

  5. #5
    Community Moderator Jim Dawson's Avatar
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    Re: Emco Turn 242 Retrofit

    Quote Originally Posted by aaronky View Post
    Thank you all for the advice. Ill go ahead and replace the motor. I will probably go with a 7.5kw motor. Is there any benefit in going with a servo on the spindle if i dont need positional control? My turret doesn't have live tooling.
    That is a tough call and a few weeks ago I would have said no. But after running the servo for a few weeks, I am much happier with the servo motor for general turning because of the torque characteristics. Much more low speed torque than the original Fanuc motor. The other interesting thing is the power usage went down a bit, but not enough to justify the servo on that basis alone. I will say that for my work I could have used a 5.5kW servo and would have plenty of power, I just didn't know it at the time.

    The cost difference for quality equipment, if you are buying new, is not that different. Assuming 7.5kW, the servo system, including all needed cables is about $3300. A VFD is going to be in the $500 - $1500 range depending on specs, and a motor suitable for spindle use will be in the $2000 range.

    In either case, I think you will need 3 phase power to run it.
    Jim Dawson
    Sandy, Oregon, USA

  6. #6
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    Re: Emco Turn 242 Retrofit

    Definitely for such power U would need 3 phase power. As for using servo as spindle I'm sceptic. Well selected motor and vector VFD will be cheaper and will do the same with low frequency torque. Anytime U can add rotary encoder for positioning and threading, and it will still be quite cheaper.

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