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Jamie Rickards
01-03-2018, 6:09 PM
I recently retrofit a treadmill motor on a lathe and it got me thinking about upgrading my table saw too. It seems like it should work but I figured I'd poll the collective as my searches have come up with very limited results.

Any issues that I should be aware of? Any reason it wouldn't be ideal?

Art Mann
01-03-2018, 8:39 PM
I am guessing you used a treadmill drive because it is a variable speed drive. I don't see much use for one on a table saw unless you just happen to have one laying around.

Jamie Rickards
01-03-2018, 9:56 PM
I used the treadmill motor for higher hp, and variable speed. The Reeves dive had broken.

I wasn't sure if a table saw would benefit from the higher hp of the dc motor. Mine currently has an old (1950-60s) 3/4hp that struggles.

Casey Gooding
01-04-2018, 11:40 PM
I've known of people using treadmill motors and controls to make variable speed belt grinders. Never heard of it for a table saw. Doesn't mean it won't work.

Jamie Rickards
01-05-2018, 11:03 AM
Yeah I've seen them used for lathes, drill presses, band saws, belt sanders, and drum sanders.

Tom Bender
01-08-2018, 8:54 AM
A couple years ago I converted my TS to variable speed and from 3600 rpm to 1800 rpm max. This works great! Usually run it around 1400 rpm. Don't know why better saws don't come this way.

Art Mann
01-08-2018, 8:10 PM
I can't imagine why anyone would want to run their table saw at anything less than the speed for which it was designed. Slower speeds will result in slower cutting and poorer cut quality.

Jamie Rickards
01-09-2018, 10:48 AM
Apparently it can reduce the risk of burning sensitive woods.

Rod Sheridan
01-09-2018, 2:04 PM
A couple years ago I converted my TS to variable speed and from 3600 rpm to 1800 rpm max. This works great! Usually run it around 1400 rpm. Don't know why better saws don't come this way.

Tom, better saws do come with different speeds, usually via multi-step pulleys..........Rod.

Rod Sheridan
01-09-2018, 2:07 PM
I can't imagine why anyone would want to run their table saw at anything less than the speed for which it was designed. Slower speeds will result in slower cutting and poorer cut quality.

Art, different speeds are useful for different diameter blades, and some saws do come with a range of speeds.

I wish my saw had a higher speed for dado cutting...........Rod.

Art Mann
01-09-2018, 4:34 PM
Please provide a link so I can see these table saws you are talking about. I have been using a table saw for about 43 years now and I have never seen one. Part of that time was in the largest cabinet shop in the Eastern United States. I can understand the need for variable speed lathes, drill presses, (some) band saws and possibly even belt sanders and drum sanders. I just can't see it for a table saw. Typically if the wood is burning, either the blade is dull or I am pushing the wood too slowly.


Tom, better saws do come with different speeds, usually via multi-step pulleys..........Rod.

Tony Pisano
01-10-2018, 12:11 PM
I used one to power my honey extractor. It's really helpful to have the variable speed. Perhaps it would be useful on a tablesaw for cutting materials you don't usually cut like aluminum with metal cutting blades?

Frank Pratt
01-11-2018, 2:08 PM
The problem with a treadmill motor is that at most it's only going to be 1 - 1 1/4 HP, in spite of what the label on the machine says. Treadmills are designed to run off a 15A, 120V circuit & that's about all the power you can get off it. They advertise the HP the same way as with vacuums & routers; pure fantasy.

John McClanahan
01-11-2018, 6:44 PM
Treadmills have the 2 hp motor so they will have enough torque at slow speed. While the motor may say 2 hp, the speed control limits the current (amps) going to the motor, so it will never produce full power with the treadmill speed control.

Rick Potter
01-11-2018, 8:44 PM
Art,

For what it's worth, my 2000 Felder KF700 had variable speed, on both the shaper and the TS. It was nice for me, because the motors they used were 50 cycle, and ran 20% faster than US motors. I often dialed down the speed depending on what I was cutting.

Jamie Rickards
01-21-2018, 5:20 PM
The problem with a treadmill motor is that at most it's only going to be 1 - 1 1/4 HP, in spite of what the label on the machine says.

That still sounds better than the 3/4 horse i have. Not seen nearly as many >1hp ac motors for cheap in my area.

Phillip Gregory
03-01-2018, 10:41 PM
Art,

For what it's worth, my 2000 Felder KF700 had variable speed, on both the shaper and the TS. It was nice for me, because the motors they used were 50 cycle, and ran 20% faster than US motors. I often dialed down the speed depending on what I was cutting.

The Felder's motor actually runs at the same speed as US-made motors as an induction motor's speed depends on line frequency and all induction motors with the same number of poles will run at about the same speed. The difference is that Felder had the sheaves sized for a motor that ran 20% slower than you are currently running it, so you are getting a speed increase due to the sheave ratio diameter being different than if it were designed to be sold in 60 Hz land.


That still sounds better than the 3/4 horse i have. Not seen nearly as many >1hp ac motors for cheap in my area.

Look at 3 phase motors. If you use one of them, you can also use a VFD to very easily get speed control. Hooking up a VFD to a 3 phase motor is trivial to do. 3 phase motors have the same frame and shaft sizes as single phase motors so one would be a direct bolt in. A treadmill motor will be difficult to adapt into the motor mount and you will also have to get a speed control for it as well as you will be unlikely to be able to use a treadmill PCB to do it and have it work well.

Rick Potter
03-02-2018, 4:38 PM
Art,

No expert here. All I know is what Felder told me, back in '99. My saw was 3 phase with a built in converter that enabled it to run on single phase.

I got it that way to have VS on the shaper motor, and didn't even know it worked on the saw motor until I got it.