# RPM Range of VFDs

I currently have the Makita router (10k-32k RPM iirc) - great for plastics and wood, “meh” for aluminum.

Can these “cheap” VFDs run sub 8k RPM?
Also, what is the max RPM of these spindles?

I don’t think I’ll be getting one anytime soon, just curious!

Hey jarrfarr,

it’s not the VFD that limits the lowest speed of the spindles, most VFDs offer 0–400 Hz, some do 580 Hz like mine. It’s the spindle and the way it is built that limits the lowest speed.

Since the rotational speed of the spindle is calculated this way:

SPINDLE_RPM = \$VFD_FREQ × 2 × 60 / \$SPINDLE_NUMBER_OF_POLES

e.g. 400 Hertz × 2 × 60 seconds / 2 poles = 24,000 rpm

this means with a spindle with two magnetic poles a VFD can deliver 0–24,000 RPM spindle speed.

Note that most 24000 RPM spindles with magnetic 2 poles have a minimum speed allowed by manufacturer of something between 8000 and 6000 RPM and running them slower can damage them, it would be good to set “Lower limit of frequency” inside the VFD to something between 133 and 100 Hz.

Those spindles with 2 magnetic poles usually are rated 6000–24,000 rpm.

Some are rated at 8000–24,000 RPM. See datasheet/manual of your spindle.

If you want to mill steel or plastic, it would be better to buy a spindle with four magnetic poles. This means that with the same frequency coming from the VFD, those run at half the speed but double the torque.

Since the rotational speed of the spindle is calculated this way:

SPINDLE_RPM = \$VFD_FREQ × 2 × 60 / \$SPINDLE_NUMBER_OF_POLES

e.g. 400 Hertz × 2 × 60 seconds / 4 poles = 12,000 rpm,

those spindles with 4 magnetic poles are usually rated 3000–12,000 rpm,

so good for the slower speeds needed for milling steel and plastic.

Most spindles with 2 magnetic poles are rated with max. 24,000 RPM. Higher speed of up to 60,000 RPM is offered for the industry but I don’t think many here need this, and it becomes very expensive then. Mechatron offers some variants of its 24,000 RPM model with 30,000 RPM and 42,000 RPM. But in fact what is demanded more often here is to have a spindle that runs slower than the usual that min. out at 6000 RPM.

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Thanks for the in-depth explanation, it was very helpful to see the math behind it all!

Wow! Thank you for your detailed explanation of those prameters. However, I have the HY 110V 1.5Kw spindle purchased through Amazon made or marketed by MySweety. It is rated 24000rpm. I watched their amazon video how to set it up. Turning the dial to max reads 400Hz on the freq reading but on the rpm reading it reads 11,520rpm. Again, it was rated 0-24000rpm. What could be the problem here?
Thank you

Hey Olan,

maybe the settings of “Rated Number of Poles (PD143)” and “Rated Motor Revolution (PD144)” are not set correctly. See here.

Thank you for your response. So I checked the VFD PD141, it says 220. But the spindle is rated 110V. Another shocker is the amperage is 8A as it was imprinted on the spindle itself. How can it be?
On the VFD box, -110V, 13A, 1.5KW
On the Spindle- 110V, 8A, 1.5KW

On the attempt to change the PD142, it doesn’t allow a change more than 007.0

Hey Olan,

The setting should be 110 if it is a 110 V VFD and if it is connected to a 110 V outlet.
However it is unlikely that it is set to 220 if it is a VFD made for 110 V. What is the exact model number?

Did you read the VFD manual and the spindle manual?

If you connect and operate a spindle and a VFD, you are responsible for the right settings. They are no work-out-of-the box devices. Did you read the VFD manual and the spindle manual?

PS: Got to leave now! Will be back later.

On the VFD box, -110V, 13A, 1.5KW
On the Spindle- 110V, 8A, 1.5KW

On the attempt to change the PD142, it doesn’t allow a change more than 007.0
Thank you i appreciate your kindness

Hey Olan,

maybe it’s a 0.8 kW spindle.

Anyway for a 24,000 rpm cheap chinese spindle, setting “Rated number of poles (PD143)” to “2” and “Rated Motor Revolution (PD144)” to “3000” should be correct, as explained here. With this you should get the spindle spinning at the right speed (24,000 rpm at 400 Hz).

Thanks! I will let you know if it fixes it

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Hey all, especially VFD/spindle beginners,

(hey Olan, I don’t suspect that you have made these things wrong, but I take the opportunity to comment what I have seen on that page)

this is obviously the cheap chinese offer ASIN B01N1EJEQ1. On the page, there is a video that intends to show how you program the VFD and then how you connect the spindle.

### Don’t use that video! Don’t do this at home!

#### Don’t think you are done with spindle installing and VFD programming by watching such a video!

One good rule that I can recommend is: Don’t make any settings on a VFD that you don’t know what they mean. But also don’t plug it in without making sure you’ve programmed everything mandatory (and correctly too).

Always first know what you are doing. Please always remember that when connecting spindles and VFDs, you can burn down your house or seriously injure yourself.

1. The video shows connecting the VFD to an outlet with a 2-wire/2-pin plug.
Don’t do this!

Never use two-wire/two pin plugs for a device that visibly has an earth contact!
Use only three-wire/three-pin plugs between wall outlet and VFD!

2. While some settings are shown in the video, the settings that are mandatory for the correct installation of a spindle are not made, let alone checked. Failure to do so may damage or destroy your spindle and/or VFD!

For a quick explanation on how to program these mandatory settings on any VFD please click here!

3. The video shows connecting the spindle with three wires, omitting ground.
Don’t do this!

Always wire the fourth contact of the spindle to ground on VFD, and always make sure that from VFD it is connected to ground on your wall outlet as well!

Use only four-wire connection (3+PE) between VFD and spindle!
Use only three-wire/three-pin plugs between wall outlet and VFD!

4. Furthermore the video shows clamping bare stranded wire ends, or even worse, soldered wire ends into a screw terminal. Don’t do this! Especially screwing down a soldered wire end is dangereous since the screw by its pressure destroys the internal cristalline solder structure.

On all power wires and terminals (=on input wire from wall outlet and on the connection between VFD and spindle), always use the connectors described in your VFD manual, which are likely to be either ring connectors or wire ferrules (depending on model)!

#### Tips

Spindle cables for chinese spindle/VFD kits, ready to use

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Thanks Aiph5u for all the clarification here.

I recently went through an evaluation of Chinese spindles and came to conclusion that if I were going to buy Chinese, it needed to be a genuine HY. The pathway that I had the most trust in was their store on Amazon.

I ended up not buying Chinese since I could get no definitive answer on constant torque speed range for the water cooled spindle I was considering. I did get an answer from the HY person who responds to Amazon sales that they recommended no lower than 10k rpm for their 2.2 kw water cooled spindle. They could offer no torque curves or real data. I was a bit surprised by that but it helped move me in a different direction.

For those buying Chinese spindles, just know the path is not always clear and getting what you order seems to be a bit arduous. So stick with the more reputable supplier.

2 Likes

Oh wow! You are the best man. Thanks a lot

Hi I have the J penny spindle and the Hy vfd and having it all hooked up correctly I’m sure I go through the settings and just like you trying to set the amperage the pd142 it will not allow me to go higher than seven yet my spindle is 12 amps did you ever get a remedy I pray so also I pray you would share it with me please thank you

Hey Greg,

you should be aware that the powerage printed on chinese spindle nameplates is often calculated not according to IEC 60034-1 and therefore incorrect. See here for more information.

1. What is the exact model of your VFD?

and

1. To what value is “Rated Motor Voltage (PD141)” set to?

Hey Olan,

There are however the Huanyang “B-T” Models with integrated step-up converter (much more expensive models). These really have 100 V class input and 200 V class output. This would explain the 7 A limit. But in this case attaching a 110 V spindle is wrong.

Anyway, for the output (spindle) side of the VFD, 110 V * √3 * 7 A would be 1.3 kW apparent electric power (=approx. 0.93 kW mechanical power), while 220 V * √3 * 7 A would be 2.7 kW apparent electric power (=approx. 1.8 kW mechanical power).

Note that if you consult the am*zon page of this item, they talk of a 110 V 5 A output VFD, and in the reviews they say:

THIS SPINDLE IS NOT GROUNDED. There is a 4 pin connector on this spindle, but only 3 wires are connected.

I can only warn against buying such crap. This can easily mean danger to life.

For this price all this stuff, that cannot be quality. For this price you usually only get a (good) VFD.

A few things have changed since 2022, when you suggested the Mechatron spindle. I bought one, and it has performed well. I damaged mine with brass dust, which made me more aware of the need for “sealing air” pressure and the equipment required for that (yet to be purchased). Along the way, I learned more about the inconvenience of international shipping as well as customs fees (even for used equipment being returned for repair). My “hobbyist” CNC is (not surprisingly) becoming a more professional-level machine.

When I bought mine (and continuing to the present) there were concerns about the quality of spindles made in China. Adding to the concerns with these spindles, I was concerned with the quality of the instructions and their coordination with various VFDs. I see that PWCNC is now selling spindles but I don’t know where they are made (so I don’t know if the concern about the Chinese spindles applies here, as well). They are selling the VFD with the spindle (as did Mechatron) which reduces the worry for a new user: ensuring they work with each other. The PWCNC package cost is significantly lower than Mechatron’s. I hope that PWCNC (based in N. America) would bridge any other gaps in the quality of instructions (if they are sourcing their spindles from the Orient). Some of the last year’s experience was made possible by my (weak) command of the German language, but not everybody is comfortable with a language other than their own.

Let me emphasize: I appreciate your advice in getting me started…there are no regrets. But now (a year later, and in your opinion) which spindle makers can provide a North American “hobbyist” with a good combination of quality, capability and after-purchase support?

Hey David,

this was asked here the other day, a truly U.S. American spindle manufacturer is cncdepot.com

and there is also Glockcnc.

However Germany and Italy are countries with strong machinery industry, so you find → a lot of spindle manufacturers there

Possibly there are much more spindle manufacturers in the US but it is difficult to find them since they do not address hobbyists. Mechatron is a manufacturer that addresses consumers and hobbyists directly, that’s what makes it easy to get a spindle from them.

Note that there are also big differences between cheap chinese spindles and expensive chinese spindles. See here the impressing video of noise and vibration comparison test between a cheap no-brand chinese spindle and an expensive brand chinese spindle.

Tom @TMToronto in this forum uses a spindle from this chinese brand (search for “@TMToronto ATC build”)

Here is the DELIXI CDI-EM60 Series VFD manual. PwnCNC VFD is DELIXI CDI-EM61. For the spindle, I would ask Daniel @PwnCNC what is the spindle manufacturer and origin.

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It’s the Hy vfd 110 volt and it’s the G Penny spindle 1.5 KW air cool rated at 12 amps

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Hey Greg,

thanks for posting the photos!

HY01D511B means HY Series, 1.5 kW capacity, 110 V single-phase input, Software Rev. B.

So you say PD142 cannot be set to something else than “007.0”?

And PD141? What is the value that PD141 is set to?

And PD008? What is the value that PD008 is set to?