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Vfd Suppliers

Discussion in 'Grinders' started by John Noon, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    hey knife crowd where do you get your VFD.
    Was looking into a couple wholesale suppliers and their prices are basically retail prices.
    With shipping best price for a kbac 29p is $666.69 delivered
     
  2. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Yes, I've been keeping an eye on them too. I got mine through Amazon.com. I believe Motor and Control Solutions was the seller. Although mine is a KBAC-27d I think it was around $535 Canadian delivered to my door. Are you specifically looking for the KBAC-29 1p?
     
  3. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    Both the 29 and 27 variant vfd.

    Don’t imagine they would be big sellers but if I can sell for a lower price I will.
     
  4. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    The 29 1p are more rare and being 3 horse command about US $50 more.
     
  5. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    Yea mine is single phase to three phase with a 25% buffer in horsepower rating give or take a bit.
    Motor was brand new and free
     
  6. Griff

    Griff Active Member

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    Ended up getting my KBAC-27D vfd off of Ebay. With most sellers using the global shipping program now it works out cheaper than getting anything this side of the border. I paid less than $600 inc taxes, shipping and import fees.
     
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  7. Robert scott

    Robert scott New Member

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  8. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I heard that KB was severely back-ordered on the 27D. Supply chain issues COVID related.
     
  9. ccady

    ccady New Member

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    [​IMG]

    $666 would be my entire budget for VFD + Control Pad, Motor + Custom Drive Wheel. Bought everything second hand new except the drive wheel which was custom. VFD is a nema1 drive so you'll still have to enclose it with a box. Motor is a type I believe only Baldor makes ODTF (Open Drip Tandem Fan). I didn't realize it was open when I bought it as I couldn't see any holes. There's nothing open about it!!

    There are options if you're not dead set on kbac.
     
  10. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I've done a cost analysis a couple of times between a NEMA 4X VFD (KBAC-27D) and a low cost NEMA 1 VFD with the addition of an enclosure, fan, power switch and associated parts. Although the NEMA 1 VFD itself will be significantly cheaper, the additional parts bring the project cost to nearly the same cost as the NEMA 4 VFD. I use surplus parts where I could and things like wire and fans were scavenged from other projects. I was lucky to find some useful parts on Kijiji as well. If I had to buy all the parts from my distributors, it would be the same cost as buying the ready-to-wire NEMA 4 VFD. From a manufacturing perspective, add labour, shipping and driving around time and there will be no doubt why a fully sealed VFD is a bargain. But we are DIYers right?

    The single most expensive additional item is the enclosure. Sometimes the enclosure is more than the VFD! A new Hammond or Hoffman with sufficient size, read depth, will come in around $180 OEM cost with variable shipping from drive to pickup to courier. The depth issue is pronounced by the many industrial enclosures that are typically 6" deep. With a mounting pan, you'll lose another inch so you have 5" to work with. Most compact NEMA 1 VFDs in the 1.5kW range will stand taller than 5" off the mounting pan. This means you'll be shooting for an 8" deep or better enclosure. Most manufacturers will recommend minimum spacing for airflow around the VFD chassis. Typically 100mm (4") top and bottom and half this on each side. Over the years I have seen dozens of improvisations for enclosures and not all of them are recommended; old computer towers, tool boxes, plywood boxes, plastic buckets, Tupperware you name it. Use whatever you like, however I would recommend a material that passes the FT4 flame test, so maybe Tupperware isn't a great idea. If you've ever seen IGBTs fail in a VFD they can give off a considerable amount of flames for a short duration. Haha.

    If your VFD's keypad is removable, you can extend it outside the enclosure and operate the VFD with it. However, the keypads are generally super small with even smaller knob and buttons. Not really meant for someone with big mitts. If you have an average Canadian sized hand or the keypad is not removable, consider the cost of small pendant enclosure, switches and lamps to give you some start/stop and speed control as well as status outside the main enclosure. I generally do this as I can start and stop and set the speed with gloves on if I need to. Here's some WIP pics of my latest 2018 build featuring a surplus fibreglass enclosure.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    At this stage I hadn't fitted the power supply and fan.

    [​IMG]

    Technology wise, the KBAC series is lagging behind most off-the-shelf industrial VFDs. Being a hybrid (part digital, part analog) they do not offer standard MODBUS communications over RS 485 which we use in many plants for centralized control and monitoring of machinery. So if I wanted to control my grinder remotely from head office, it will require an additional module for a KBAC. This lack of capability is generally not an issue on a garage belt grinder. Another area where the KBACs are lacking is top-end frequency. The max frequency is 120 Hz, whereas just about every industrial VFD I have met has a max frequency of 400 Hz. Again, not a likely a problem with a belt grinder. Where I like the garden variety industrial drive is flexibility. Programmable torque boost, programmable V/Hz curve, programmable relay contact and fault triggers and tons of tweaks one can do. If you need this flexibility, this will factor into your choice as well.

    Technical capability is a probably the single largest factor. If you are wise in the ways of wiring, fabrication and programming, you can do all that is required to put an unsealed VFD into service. On the other hand, if you are unfamiliar and let's say your electrician friend is coming over one night to wire things up, the KBAC is pretty much ready to go. I think it took me under an hour to wire the supply cord, drive and motor. Programming an industrial VFD can range from a pleasant learning experience to downright frustrating. Manuals are often sketchy. I spent about a week of evenings getting my second NEMA 1 drive (shown above) in an enclosure with remote controls all hooked up and programmed. In programming I chased a problem for several hours. It turns out that my particular VFD wasn't set reset to factory settings prior to shipping. I had to reset to factory before starting any programming.

    Hope this helps people in deciding what style of VFD to go with.

    Ya, those J motors have one funky shaft on them. Usually meant for impellers. Glad you could make use of it.

    Dan
     
  11. Griff

    Griff Active Member

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    @ccady Not sure if you’re are pulling our legs with the $666 demonic price point lol...but here’s what I posted in another thread recently...in fact this was so recent I thought it had been deleted from this one, too many freaking VFD topics going haha!

    **************************************** Repost ****************************************

    KBAC-27D here from the guy I dealt with. In U.S funds:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/KB-Electro...645494&hash=item46ae23a081:g:OHEAAOSwL5pZiMJD

    VFD $357.00
    Shipping $19.91
    Import Taxes $53.61

    Total $430.52 U.S or $592.89 cad at time of posting.

    All done through EBay’s global shipping program. Nothing to pay when it gets to your Canadian address.

    Here’s some the other part numbers you will/ or might like to source

    Forward - Stop - Reverse Switch For 27D #9480 (note this switch works on the 24D also)
    Power On/ Off Switch For 27D #9523 (This on / off is for 27D and 29D models)


    Check this against Canadian prices before buying :beer:

    *************************************************************************************

    I thought this was worth reposting as it’s under $600 Canadian and delivered. The switches would be extra though, but you’ll still only be a shade over the above number!
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2020
  12. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Muuhahahah!
     
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  13. Griff

    Griff Active Member

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    A note about Nexus Grinders. I have a Nexus grinder, and I am very happy with it, they were a pleasure doing business with. And good on anyone for supporting a Canadian supplier. I wanted to post this for comparison and of course I’m using my own location in Ontario for shipping.

    A KBAC-27D $654.27
    Switch Package (included Forward-Stop-Reverse and the Power On/Off switch) $73.45
    Shipping $54.61

    Total in Cad $782.33 (the above and this total is with taxes included)

    This is by no means a bad deal this side of the border. I checked this out after seeing @Robert scott say he got his from Nexus. So anyway, good options abound.

    Cheers!
     
  14. ccady

    ccady New Member

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    $666 was the number quoted in the original post. I just rounded down to the nearest dollar.
     
  15. ccady

    ccady New Member

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    Totally agree with you Dan. NEMA1 aren't really worth the trouble and your comment on KBAC.

    Hence, I'm going to end up using this set for my build.

    [​IMG]

    For this one, the motor is 2.5HP Westcode (by Leeson) with Nema4x VFD. 5/8" Drive wheel included with the grinder I picked up. Cost about the same as the other set. Motor is a TENV, but should be fine since I won't be running the grinder from morning to night. Worst case, I'll point a fan over it if heat becomes an issue.

    Point is, at the $666 (I notice too when I wrote the original post too btw) price point, you have options. Like Dan, I live in the GTA. No problem sourcing parts for any of my builds. Only thing is, I have to stop buying and start building.....
     
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  16. Griff

    Griff Active Member

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    @ccady good luck with your build man.

    I can only tell you the reason a lot of knife makers (myself included) go with KBAC products is because we can mount them directly on or at arms reach from the 2x72’s, and disc grinders we use without worrying about metal dust, carbon fibre dust, wood etc etc getting inside and screwing them up! Also you can change the speed mid-grind, and with ease, without disturbing your train of thought, or the position/angle of the knife to back off and open a cabinet to turn a knob.

    I am glad you went with the E3 IP66 for those reasons as it says it’s an enclosed unit *Thumb up*

    The pricing I put above is the best I have found for this side of the border for KB Electronics. I was only lucky once with my disc grinder build finding a KBAC-24D on Kijiji...outside of that KBAC second hand is as rare as rocking horse :poop:D

    Post some pics when you finally build your set up...I definitely want to see it :beer::beer:
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2020
  17. ccady

    ccady New Member

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    Thanks for the encouragement. At the pace I'm going, I'm never going to finish....it was hard for me to find time to do this until covid-19 came along. There's a reason why I have 2 sets of motors + VFDs. I just finished a big household wiring project which sucked up a lot of my DIY time. This week, I said to myself, I'm finally going to do this!!!

    I have most of the parts I need. Will be picking up some odds and ends this week as I work on it.

    As stated, I have a nema1 drive as well. I don't think it's as big of a deal as many people think. Technically, I can mount the VFD on my bedroom wall if I wanted to, and run a wire to the keypad. Pretty much what this guy did:
     
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  18. Griff

    Griff Active Member

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    Interesting! Not sure I like his KB bashing lol! Just kidding, I don’t care, they work perfectly for me and almost every other knife maker I know.

    Can I ask what the E3 IP66 cost?
     
  19. ccady

    ccady New Member

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    LOL. Dan pretty much said the same thing in an earlier post. Perhaps if you knew some knife makers in Europe. I know the KBACS are really popular in North America and was really surprised when I first started sourcing parts. The local Invertek employee here in Ontario pointed me to the brand.

    My E2 IP20 + 3HP motor + Keypad + Drive wheel cost around $666. I switched to using the E3 IP66 + 2HP motor because it's more suitable and cost around the same at the end if I were to require a custom drive wheel and the keypad wouldn't be required. Custom drive wheels are around $100 USD and I commented on motors being fairly inexpensive on another thread. That's should give you a fair idea how much I paid for the VFD's and how much you should budget for one if an appropriate one pops up.

    Like I said, at $666, you have options. In the end, I didn't want to play with mounting the big Baldor and the 2HP Westcode pop up. The Westcode has it's problems too, but can be solved by mounting a couple of PC case fans to blow on the motor and maybe the VFD. Subsequently, the E3 became available as well, so I pulled the trigger on that. The second set just eliminates a lot of issues I have, so it was too good to pass up.

    FYI, I tend to over buy. Which is why I have 2 sets instead of one. I would be open to offers on leftovers after I'm done my build and I confirm everything is working fine.....

    In comparison, if I were to go with the KBAC, it's pretty much a knife makers VFD, and as you correctly pointed out, no one ever resells their's so there's a really small availability in the resale market. Many in the industry uses Invertek products, so periodically, a suitable one pops up. Like me, businesses tend to over buy, projects get cancelled, so there's a good availability on the second hand new market. Judging by his guides, I'm sure Dan's a pro at sourcing this stuff.
     

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