Inventables Community Forum

X-Carve Spindles

When I first built my Shapeoko2 the only spindle I had on hand was a 1.5kw water cooled 80mm dia. spindle. And since I was building it with a 1 meter wide gantry you can imagine there was measurable amount of twist on the gantry. I cured this by inserting a “T” shape extrusion I found that had a thickness that perfectly filled the void between the two maker slide extrusions that make up the gantry. When the assembly was drilled and bolted together, it gave me a gantry that was very strong and handled the weight of the big spindle with very little flex or sag.

I ran the Shapeoko like this for a few weeks until acquiring a Quiet Spindle. There was a slight difference in noise level with the new spindle, but the biggest change was a noticeable increase in “snappiness”. With the reduction in weight the X axis could really zip back and forth and the occasional lost step in the X axis disappeared completely.

The really nice discovery was that there was no loss in cutting ability. The much smaller 300w spindle handled all the cutters I was using with the larger 1.5kw spindle perfectly. I’ll note that I have only tried cutters up to 1/4" diameter and smaller. Bigger router cutters may perform differently, so, YMMV.

Larry

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I started looking into some spindle upgrades and found a couple on AliExpress. I’m not too familiar with these, but they look like what everyone has been posting from Amazon.

HERE is one, its 220v and looks exactly like a couple I’ve see posted. This one comes with everything you need and is a pretty good price I think.

I’m going to keep searching the site for a 110v version, but I thought I’d get your guys input!

I just got my package from China. I ordered from ebay, one of the only 110V options out there.

Tonight, I put together a heavy duty power cord, and got the inverter to power up. The manual is both detailed and vague, Also, while the sticker on the inverter clearly says 110v, and it does power up, the list of models in the manual makes no mention of a 110v model.

Anyway, this setup did not include the cooling stuff, just a cast aluminum mount (I think I will probably end up using the 611 mount), and plug so you can build your own cable, (I ordered some shielded 300V 15Amp cable from mcmaster to use for this), the inverter, and the spindle. The cooling connectors were not the standard 3/8 size, but a 1/4 ID, 5/17 OD stuff. I got some of the thinner tubing, but I still need to reducers to fit it to my pump radiator setup.

Also missing is any docs on the spindle itself, like what are the safe ranges for input frequency.

In retrospect, it might have been a better idea to hire an electrician to install a 220V outlet in my shop rather than go with the 110V model, but we will see.

I just hope you can’t hear the whine from inverters. Drives me nuts. :wink:

It makes an awful whine. I was wondering if it was a bad fan, or just the normal noise of one of these things. It also smells like gun powder for some reason.

That is a standard 611 mount, but we had to wrap the spindle with a thin sheet of Styrene for it to fit.

Do you mean a solid styrene plastic, or a foam? Can you post a picture of how you have it shimmed? Thanks.

Interested in knowing more about the styrene too and where I can find a few inches… I heard some reports of the mount being tight on the 611 so hoping that helps a bit with the 65mm spindles. :smile:

i am not familar with that drive. I have experience with yaskawa drives and ABB drives. there may be a setting to change the operating frequency to reduce the whine. I believe the whine is actually a biproduct of the triacs switching. Hope this helps

If I may ask, where did you purchase the 800w air cooled spindle and VFD? Also, is it 110v or 220v? I would also like to upgrade my spindle and not mess with water cooling if possible.

We purchased from eBay. We are trying to sort through the the actual manufacturers to find a good quality source. I cannot give a source yet, but here are some guidelines

  • Make sure the body diameter is 65mm
  • Make sure the spindle voltage matches the VFD voltage.
  • The VFDs with the pot knob are nice.

Here are some photos of our VFD.

<img src="//discuss-assets.s3.amazonaws.com/original/2X/6/60db08d18366cc74f993df9a7097ca5ab38857bc.png" width=“300”

Thanks for the quick response. If I am reading the sticker correctly, it is 110v input, and 110v output? So I could run this off a “household” outlet and the spindle runs off 110v as well?

The spindle is 3 phase 110 AC.

You should search the web for a PDF manual. It will give you all the details. It will also give you an idea of the complexity of these things.

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You won’t be able to run 3 phase off of household current. Is there a phase converter built in?

@DennisMartin Yes, that is essentially what the VFD does. It rectifies the input voltage to DC, then coverts that to 3 phase AC with the frequency required to give the selected RPM.

Typically these spindles run at a maximum to 24,000 RPM. The VFD needs to provide 400 Hz to get that RPM.

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@BartDring Are y’all looking at sourcing air cooled spindle/vfd combos to sell and/or include with the X-carve? I think I’ve found the combo I want, I’m just waiting to save up some $$ to buy it. In the meantime, I wired up my Craftsman cordless 19.2v trim router (using the 24v from the normal spindle connections) with the universal mount/plate, and it has been working very well…I just don’t foresee it lasting a very long time, and would like to get the vfd in the next few months.

Where did you find yours?

It’s on Ebay for $254.98: “Four bearing air-cooled motor spindle 0.8kw and inverter drive VFD”. Although I might purchase the spindle off Ebay or Aliexpress, and buy the 110v VFD from AutomationTechnologiesInc.com…but I think it’s closer to $290 going that route.

I have been doing a lot of researching on a CNC machine that will meet my needs. I have a limited window of opportunity on a lucrative job w/ limited expenses upfront, and the X-Carve looks like it will be the best option for my needs, and the upgradability is a must. Any updates on the write up for upgrading and options for using a VFD on the X-Carve? Also, any updates on the release of the X-Controller?

Thank you for all your efforts
Scott

I have been using this to work with my 2 VFD spindles and it has worked perfectly. I have used it for 9+hours straight on large mill jobs without any issues and it has not even gotten warm much less hot. I have even used it for a few hours with both VFD spindles running ( I have 3 mills) and it has worked perfectly. So it might be an option to look into.

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I have been using the 110 volt VFD with a 800 watt water cooled spindle for a few months now and love it. It is my understanding that the output of the VFD is 3 phase 220 volt independent on what the input power is. I am not an electrician but I do know it works, I am happy with it.

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