I've had an American Rotary 20hp ADX converter for years and never had any problems with it. Recently bought their 50hp AI package unit but other than test running haven't had a chance to get hooked up. They're worth checking out if you're looking for new.
You can also DIY a 3 phase converter but I don't have the knowledge or desire to learn how to do it.
What size is that? You were doing nice work on the smaller lathe. Are you planning something bigger than it would do? What size HP motor on the new one? I believe VFD's aren't good option for over 1HP, but haven't looked too hard.
American Rotary sells on ebay and often runs discounts not shown on their site. Phase-A-Matic is also a good brand. Had a small one for years with no problems. You can get VFDs for high horsepower but they're pricey and don't make sense to me if you want to be able to run multiple machines. General rule of thumb for rotary phase converter is 2x the hp you want to run.
It’s a south bend 13 x 72
The motor is 3 phase 240V 3HP
It came with:
quick change toolpost
Turret tool post
Turret tail stock
Collet attachment with collets
A ton of tooling.
It was great grandpas from the 40s. The guy said nobody in the family has known how to use it in 40 years.
The guy was all “NO LOW BALLERS I WANT $1,200.
I said no problem dude. It was just sitting there in the dust and mouse poop.
Congrats! Nice lathe I have a SB 13” with a 60” table.
Though mine did not get the tear down and rebuild yours is getting! Want to visit PA for the a couple days??? Haha I can pay in belts of ammo!
Regarding power you have a couple options as mentioned above (rotary, static & VFD). I usually recommend rotary or VFD depending on the application and amount of 3ph you need?
Will this be the only 3ph machine? Usually space is the limiting factor for the amount of equipment you will acquire. I have my lathe and mill but dont see a need for additional 3ph motors (space being a factor). VFD “CAN” be cheaper and offer some additional advantages versus a rotary conversion. With a VFD you have the option to program and control the speed and the way the unit starts and stops. For me, I use the VFD regularly to adjust the speed of my SB lathe. On the other hand on my Bridgeport I use the mill Gear to control speed though I am still running it with a VFD.
Being you have a 3hp motor that will also effect price, a VFD will be more expensive then some of the cheaper 1-2hp units. Also dont forget space. A rotary conversion will need a spot which again may not be an issue, but good things to plan out and think about.
If you goes with a VFD I have a bunch of experience with the Lenze AC Drives and their technical support actually picks up the phone and helps free of charge. (No sitting on hold either)
Don't hesitate to reach out!!
Mike, There are many ways to skin this cat. It just comes down to what is available and right price for you.
You could consider a single phase motor. You may already know each motor has a data tag. The frame and Hp are the 2 important ones. You already know Hp, so frame size is all you need. It is usually a combination of numbers and letters. It may not be economical or available, but something to consider.
If you have access to usable motors (1 single phase and 1 three phase) of adequate size you could build your own converter. I'm sure you have already came across this though.
Keep us updated it is always nice to see how someone else does it.
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