Velox CNC question

Our team has a Velox VR-5050 WSCS that is wired for 220 V 3 phase power with the Tekno router. We have lost our shop and have to move, but the new location does not have 3 phase power and we can’t get 3 phase power cost effectively.
Is there an affordable way of converting to single phase?
The best I’ve found is to buy a cheap router (relatively) that takes single phase. I’ve found this one as the closest to what we have, but understand it’s not near the quality.

Any suggestions?

Have you considered a phase converter?

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What you need is a VFD. See for example

Note input current on single phase is going to be more than 3x 3-phase, so you’ll need a big breaker.


A what, you say?

You could also look into getting or making a rotary phase converter.

Paging @RoboChair

I’ll second the VFD suggestion, but I’d recommend one from a reputable brand and supplier, not from Amazon. Do you have the exact Teknomotor part number off the spindle?

The simplest solution is to purchase an AC motor drive (VFD or ASD) with a single-phase input or with a three-phase input that is capable of operating with a single-phase input. The same vendor you found sell the same single-phase input drive separately for less than half the money. Vevor is not one of the major brands like Allen Bradley, Hitachi, Fuji, Schneider, Mitsubishi, ABB, Teco, Toshiba, Siemens etc. so it might not be as reliable but will probably be good enough. I think a lot of these off-brand drives are made for cost sensitive applications like HVAC and water well pumping. Many of them are likely to have been made in the same factory with different face plates and stickers. There are only 4 manufacturers of the power transistors (IGBT’s) used in all drives and my experience with all of them has been uniformly good. The off-brand drives will cut corners on the other components (leading to a shorter life) and product support.

The second simplest solution is to purchase a drive with a three-phase input with a current rating that is at least 1.73 X the rating of your current router. One of the three input connections would be left unconnected. It will run at up to 57 % of rated output current. Automation Direct sell some appropriate 10 hp units but they are more expensive and still are also not a major brand. Surplus Center has this Hitachi drive for about the same money.

I do not recommend rotary phase converters. They require using a three-phase motor with a higher rating than your load motor (so it will be larger and more expensive), you will not get proper three-phase out of it and the efficiency is low.

If router you currently have is also rated at 4 kW (5.4 hp), you will need a drive rated for 9.3 hp. The closest would be a 10 hp drive.

The input current through each input loop (1) of a drive with a single-phase input is 1.73 X (square root of 3) the input current through each input loop (3) of a drive with a three-phase input. The input rectifiers will be selected to withstand the rated input current.

Edited to add:
Make sure you install the drive away from the router if you are going to cut metal. Preferably, higher up on a wall. Many have control panels that can be mounted separately from the drive. None of these drives are dust proof. Getting metal dust into them WILL cause them to release magic smoke. Someone on a different internet forum who did not heed this advice reported seeing a bright flash before their drive died.

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I have been summoned!!!

Buy a VFD that has the correct input and outputs that has enough rating and then some breathing room on top of that. 1678 runs our Velox on a single phase VFD with a larger than normal breaker and have had zero problems with that circuit.

Also philso in the above post outlines a lot of good points to consider

Thanks everyone! Certainly not my area of expertise.
Based on what everyone described, it appears the VFD suggested by philso is the most economical approach to our problem, plus it can accept 3 phase or single phase on input, so if we change in the future we can go either way. The VFD is rated for 18 amps and the breaker in our temporary shop is 60 amps so we should be good. It’s rated just slightly higher than the VFD we have.
I’m not sure I understand the sugggestion of a 9.3 hp drive? Our router (Tekno p/n 51600356) is rated for 3.3 kw (4.5 HP). Our existing VFD is rated for 3.75 kw. The proposed VFD is 4 kw. Seems like we are staying in the same ballpark? Or am I mixing up “drive” with “VFD” in philso’s post?
Our current VFD is a Delta VFD037C23A and it appears it only takes 3 phase as input so we do have to change.
Again, appreciate all the input. We only found out we lost the shop 2 weeks ago and have to be out in 4 weeks, so we’re moving into temporary storage and working on permanent solutions. We have a small shop we’ll put the CNC in for now so we can keep up our machining skills. It’ll probably be next fall before we can find a permanent home - hopefully. I guess this is a good year to do it though.

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I believe that the Vevor drives are all single-phase input only and cannot be connected to a three-phase source. I found a manual for them online last night by searching for the model number that appeared in the Amazon link in your first post. Unfortunately, they no longer show that model and the link for just the drive does not show the model number on the front panel. I seem to recall that the manual I found showed only two input terminals for all models in the product family so they are all single-phase only.

The suggestion for a 9.3 hp drive only applies if you are purchasing one that has a three-phase input.

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@dv_dt it looks like your existing VFD does up to 600Hz yes? I’m not finding many other VFDs that will take a single phase input and do up to 600Hz.

Do you know more about how it interfaces to the rest of the machine in terms of control or safety? That may be a point to consider.

My team bought a Velox about 4 years or so ago with the base model 115VAC router then we did a massive upgrade last summer with a 3-phase VFD and spindle. I wired it up with MODBUS for control so we have full spindle speed control and spindle load feedback in Mach3. I also added in a contactor and a bunch of other functional safety components like a safety relay and hardware safety stop circuitry for some peace of mind now that we dramatically increased the speed and power of the machine. Do you know if Velox invested in any of that safety stuff on your fancier-model machine? Ours just came with a simple relay to switch the spindle then all of the e-stop stuff is basically in software. I know the ShopBot machines at least have a contactor in them on a keyswitch so you can’t start the spindle without the key attached to one of the spindle wrenches.

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Using the MODBUS, RS-485 or CAN interface to control the drive is a good way to implement a remote installation to avoid getting metal dust into your drive.

Those are pretty good drives. I would trust the firmware running in them more than the firmware in any of the no-name brands. They are also more likely to meet the specifications. I believe they manufacture the smaller, low-cost commodity drives for many of the major players. On a visit to their factory to investigate outsourcing our low-cost drives, my bosses saw drives with the name of one major European brand on the assembly line and the name of a second major European brand on the second day. A good option may be to ask Delta to direct you to a distributor to get a used 10-15 hp version from the same product family.

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Our VR-5050 has a VFD that came with the tool to control the spindle speed. Velox Support helped us get the VFD configured to “make up” the missing legs.

You should make sure your CNC doesn’t already have a VFD you can use.