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  1. #1
    Hi Everyone,

    Well Not often I post Build threads is it.!! . . . Monster Blu I'm calling this beast. Mostly because The air was blue while moving it around. Because like the pics show she's a Big Lass with plenty of meat on her bones and doesn't want to move willingly.

    It will be a Longgggggggg drawn out build thread so don't expect regular updates or it running within 3wks. I've had it 12mth and it's only made it half way up the yard. Still not made it into the shop yet so poor thing is stripped naked and undercover outside. Thou She is only 2.5 half Routers away from making it onto the shop then it's action stations.!!

    Anyway The Machine is Circa 1995 SEMCO 1000 CNC Bed mill. It started life has CNC machine so not a Retro fitted Manual machine so is fully kitted out with Ground ballscrews etc and nice smooth Box linear ways.
    It was running a Anilam Mk3300 Controller along with Anilam Analog DC drives connected to SEM DC Brushed servos.
    Spindle is 7.5HP INT40 taper with Back gear and Air operated Draw bar. Motor is Max 7500rpm AC Inverter motor running off ABB AC600 VFD for speed control so not a geared head, Bloody thing is massive and All 3 Phase.

    Most of it was working when I bought it except the Control needed a PSU to get working again. Thou I briefly got it to come to life I never intended to use it this way and the plan all along was to upgrade with a Modern Controller and Mach3 so it was first thing removed.

    Now the original plan was to just replace the Control with a Analog controller and re-use the DC drives/Motors and see how they held up.
    If didn't like them or they played silly buggers, which Old Analog drives are known to do, then I'd look at replacing with AC servos.!! . . . Well.!! . . That was sooner than expected, much sooner when one of the Drives decided to depart this life just on the bench so the decision to go AC servo was made for me there and then.!!
    The next problem was funding this easy decision.!! . . The Old SEM Brushed DC motors where Big buggers with some grunt so wasn't talking 400watt servos here.! Quick bit number crunching showed 1.5Kw was smallest I could get away with 1.8Kw being better. I didn't want to de-rate the machine ideally so wouldn't go lower than 1.5Kw so went for 1.8Kw for little safety margin.
    So After looking around getting some quotes etc then after picking my self up off the floor I decided to Head East to my Chinese friends which you'll see the result of soon.

    So with my quick "Sling a controller on it" Plan Fubard it's turned into a full blown Gut and start again job and Hence why it's been sat in the yard 12mths. That and finding time is like finding rocking Horse shite.!

    The state of play at the minute is the machine is stripped of all it's external components and electrics being just a Chassis greased up under cover in the yard waiting for some TLC.

    New plan is to Start from scratch with full rebuild and paint Job. I'd like to have some kind of enclosure around it, or more than is on it now. So I'll look at what's involved to make this happen without getting silly.
    ATC is also something I'd like to build into it but the Air operated with threaded draw isn't ideal for this but still i've seen it done so should be do-able. It's just a timing and Sensors really so shouldn't be too hard.(famous last words hey.!) The mechanics of it are not a problem.

    Need to look at powering the Spindle/VFD has it's 415v 3phase which I don't have at home. I do at my work unit but this is Living at home. Several Options here None of them Cheap.!!

    I'm slowly getting together the electronics. I already had a CSlabs IP-A analog controller for it which I'll use. The AC servo motors/drives have just arrived has you'll see later.!

    Soon I'll be in a position to Mock up and try on machine to see how she boogies. Then I'll start the real work of clean up and fitting out properly with hopefully some of my Wish list. Well at least the Extra enclosure which will happen.!! .. . . . But none of this will probably happen untill well into next year has I'm flatout busy.!

    Anyway some pics will follow and a little Vid or two. .

  2. #2
    Sorry No Naked Pics.!!!

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by JAZZCNC; 10-11-2015 at 11:16 PM.

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to JAZZCNC For This Useful Post:

  4. #3
    Very nice and informative vid Dean looking forward to seeing the build.
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to Clive S For This Useful Post:

  6. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Clive S View Post
    Very nice and informative vid Dean looking forward to seeing the build.
    I'm 99.9% sure you'll be the first to see it move Clive. . . . Or with you just being on the other side of Pennines you may find some Servo Motors landing in your back Garden. .

  7. #5
    Hi there mate Monster blue is a monster of a machine with out doubt but it is going to be a beauty also I am sure! Best of luck, lights out time for me but will watch the video tomorrow.

  8. #6
    wow I'm so jelous to have such a machine combined with your skill and knowledge you can make the VMC of dreams!

  9. #7
    I'll be interested to see how you drive a 7.5HP spindle off a domestic supply - that's going to dim the lights when you fire it up! But by the time you get there, I'm sure you'll have a solution...

  10. #8
    Subscribed to this thread.....looking forward to seeing this build


  11. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Neale View Post
    I'll be interested to see how you drive a 7.5HP spindle off a domestic supply - that's going to dim the lights when you fire it up! But by the time you get there, I'm sure you'll have a solution...
    Probably with one of these Digi phase converters which are a more balanced type of Rotary converter that are suited better to sensitive electronics like in VFD or CNC machine. Not cheap thou to buy or Run.!

    Did consider a 240 to 415 VFD but not sure they will do the job and I've heard they are a little Dirty regards the feeding crap back into the grid which can't be having if running Servos. Neighbours or YEB i'm not too bothered about but servos taking off or giving grief I can't live with. . .Lol

    Any other suggestions greatly received.!

  12. #10
    I had a similar but smaller-scale problem recently, which is why I asked! I have a lathe with a 3HP/2.2KW motor, 415V/3ph, of course. Without major dismantling and rebuilding the motor, I couldn't do the old delta-star conversion trick. I ended up buying a 240V-415V VF inverter, which is fine up to a point, and that point comes when there is heavy load on the inverter. I run it at 50Hz as the lathe has its own variable-speed drive but although the lathe should go up to 2500RPM, above 2000 the load (not cutting, just idling so to speak) is sufficient to trip the inverter. The problem isn't load as such, but the fact that the input is single-phase rather than the three-phase that it was originally designed to use, compounded by the fact that there is a rather crude voltage doubler to go from 240 to a nominal 480 in front of the inverter. If I could find a big 240-415 transformer that would help. That lot runs off a dedicated 16A supply which is fine. I suspect that if you look into it, the cheapest option might be to go for a three-phase supply to the workshop. It might be cheaper than a massive inverter. Still, you've got plenty of time to save up the pennies! Like everyone else, I'll be watching this one with interest.
    [EDIT] Just had a look at those Digi-Phase converters. Haven't come across those before. Unfortunately there isn't quite enough information to see what they can do, although they do sound a step up from the simple rotary converter.
    Last edited by Neale; 11-11-2015 at 09:29 PM.

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