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Thread: DC Treadmill motor Table saw?

  1. #1

    DC Treadmill motor Table saw?

    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?

  2. #2
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    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.

  3. #3
    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.

  4. #4
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    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.

  5. #5
    Yeah I've seen them used for lathes, drill presses, band saws, belt sanders, and drum sanders.

  6. #6
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    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.

  7. #7
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    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.

  8. #8
    Apparently it can reduce the risk of burning sensitive woods.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bender View Post
    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.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art Mann View Post
    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.

  11. #11
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    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.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Sheridan View Post
    Tom, better saws do come with different speeds, usually via multi-step pulleys..........Rod.

  12. #12
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    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?

  13. #13
    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.

  14. #14
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    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.

  15. #15
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    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.
    Rick Potter

    DIY journeyman,
    FWW wannabe.
    AKA Village Idiot.

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