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Thread: Thank you, Mr. Peacock!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    49,198

    Thank you, Mr. Peacock!!

    Last Saturday I blew out another X-10 240v 20a HD Appliance module...the one I use to control the DC. This one only lasted about 9 months. So I had this bright idea to forget controlling the motor directly with a wireless switch and "switch" over to using a contactor that is rated a bit higher and up to the job. Coincidently, Dennis Peacock has an excellent article on the same published on his web site which I put to good use today.

    While I could have sourced the contactor relatively cheaply if I ordered from a surplus outfit and waited for it to arrive, there's nothing like "instant gratification", so I trotted out to the local electrical supply this morning and picked one up. Then it was off to the 'Depot for a few other things I needed for various projects in addition to some more rubber coated 12 guage cord, a 120v plug and the load center case that Dennis recommended. Radio Shack supplied the crimp connectors (which I also needed for some auxiliary lighting on the tractor) and a new X-10 120v switch module.

    It took about a half hour to put everything together and I'm pleased with the results. The X-10 stuff is still finicky so I'm contemplating replacing it with a low-voltage switching system or maybe just one big, fat on-off switch in the middle of the shop, but no matter...the contactor works beautifully!

    Thanks Dennis for an excellent and very useful article!

    Obligatory Pics:

    1) Parts ready to go
    2) Assembled contactor and box mounted next to the DC
    3) Zoomed out for the "big picture" (DC filter is removed for clarity...that grey foam is the "silencer" that reduces sound levels of the air rushing into the filter)
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Jim Becker; 10-16-2004 at 8:42 PM.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  2. #2
    Yep. Remotes sure are HANDY, and Dennis is also HANDY.

    I used a different remote than He suggested, and wired mine into the hot feed of the present mag switch, keeping it INLINE, in case the remote failed. I probably spent about $50.00 for the whole shebang.

    Steve


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Portsmouth, VA
    Posts
    1,218
    Jim, any idea why the module blew out? Especially since you said it was only 9 months and that this was "another" module. I've had my LR unit for about 3 years without any problems, is there any reason you didn't opt for that route? BTW, what was the total "damage" to construct that - it's something to keep in mind in the event I ever lose my LR.

    Be well,

    Doc

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Santa Barbara County, CA
    Posts
    499

    I gave up on the remote...

    I just use micro switches on each of my blast gates.

    24v controlling a 240v contactor. Cheap, fool proof and I have to turn the blast gates on and off anyway. I have a couple regular on/off switches located around the shop that I can use if I want to keep the DC running all the time.

    Having 24v around also made it easy to control my air ram powered gate that automatically opens and turns on the DC when I switch on the Table saw (<$45 invested).

    Whoo Hoo, I'm sure stylin' now

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    49,198
    Quote Originally Posted by Don Abele
    Jim, any idea why the module blew out? Especially since you said it was only 9 months and that this was "another" module. I've had my LR unit for about 3 years without any problems, is there any reason you didn't opt for that route? BTW, what was the total "damage" to construct that - it's something to keep in mind in the event I ever lose my LR.
    I suspect that the X-10 modules are not "over engineered" and the inrush of the 2hp Leeson motor on the cyclone was just pounding it.

    The reason I don't use a Long Ranger is because I refuse to have to carry around a remote...been there, done that. It always ended up in the house somewhere due to CRS. While I am using a wireless remote system, I have 7 remotes located at various workstations and they are "nailed down" with HD hook and loop. (I caught a closeout sale at SmartHome.com on the old style remotes and got six of them for $3.99 each...including the batteries...normally they cost about $20)

    Today's spend was as follows:

    $33 Contactor (2-pole 30a w/120v coil)
    $20 Load center box
    $6 Cable
    $2 Crimp Fasteners
    $5 120v plug
    $1 Misc Hardware
    $12 X-10 120v Appliance Module

    $79 Total

    I already had the 240v 20a plug on the cable coming from the cyclone motor and just needed to move it. The particular contactor I bought actually spanned the pre-tapped holes in the load center case so no drilling or tapping was required.

    The nice thing about this setup is that you can continue to use the wireless remote of your choice with it. (the reason for the X-10 module in the purchase since I already have a working receiver and remotes) The contactor just provides a heavy duty method for switching the machine motor off and on. "You" switch something at lower voltage and the contactor does the real work.

    Quote Originally Posted by nic obie
    I just use micro switches on each of my blast gates.
    Since I let my DC run for longer periods of time and move from machine to machine, my preference is to have switching separate from the blast gates, but everyone's work patterns are different and that is a great way to deal with it if you like switching with your gates.
    Last edited by Jim Becker; 10-16-2004 at 10:24 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Conway, Arkansas
    Posts
    12,724
    Well Jim....

    Glad you got it all worked out. I think you'll like that setup better than the last as this should lasy you YEARS instead of months!!

    Thanks for the kind words Jim and I'm always glad to help.
    Thanks & Happy Wood Chips,
    Dennis -
    Get the Benefits of Being an SMC Contributor..!
    ....DEBT is nothing more than yesterday's spending taken from tomorrow's income.

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