View Full Version : Help with Spindle

Ryan Patterson
06-25-2005, 08:19 PM
I bought the 3hp spindle and got it running. I made some test cuts all worked great. Started to cut again the the spindle shuts off the vfd displays "off". I will reset the vfd and lower the rmp to 9000 start the spindle, it works. when the spindle starts a hear the spindle click then it starts. When I raise the rpm to 20,000 it does not sound like it is running at 20,000. It will run idle but as soon as it has a load it shuts off. The manual troubleshooting states "off" is Ground fault, 1.Check whether the IGBT power module is damaged. 2. Check for possible poor insulation at the output line. The manual does not tell me what a IGBT is. What is and IGBT and how do I know if it is damaged?

06-25-2005, 08:44 PM
IGBT defined:

(Let us know how things work out. I'm waiting for my 3hp Colombo to arrive.)


Ryan Patterson
06-25-2005, 08:52 PM
Thank you, Mike
Now that i know what an IGBT is, i would think if it was damaged the spindle would to work after I reset the VFD. What could be the cause of the problem?

06-25-2005, 09:55 PM
I've just downloaded and printed the Delta Manual, so it will take a little while to read through; however, I think that the error display is 'GFF' (for Ground Fault - page 7-4).

As far as I can tell, the output line(s) mentioned would have to be T1, T2, T3 and E (page 3-2) that connect directly to the spindle. My approach would be to carefully check (with a strong light and a magnifying glass) the terminals on the VFD to verify that there is not a stray strand of wire that is touching two of the terminals. Assuming that you find no problem there, the next step would be to carefully check the entire cable from the VFD to the spindle to check for a possible slice, crack or smashed portion of cable that would indicate that the internal wires might be touching.

You might also disconnect the power cable from both the spindle and the VFD and then do an ohm test with your multi-meter on the output wires to see if there is a short somewhere in the line. (I have no idea whether the cable can be easily disconnected or not, having never even seen a VFD or a spindle - I'm still marvelling at the ability to flip a switch and see a light turn on out here in Utah).

All kidding aside, a simple systematic approach is the method I use when dealing with unfamiliar equipment.

(I just got a phone call from one of my Sons, who lives about 100 miles away, for some help tonight, which means I probably won't have a chance to read the manual until tomorrow. Hopefully, you'll have things running before then.)


06-26-2005, 07:59 AM
Ryan: Before you start messing around with it beyond checking for bad connections or poor ground call Delta Monday AM. They are very good and helpful. I know waiting may be tough but it could save you more trouble.


06-26-2005, 05:02 PM
Dave has given excellent advice about asking Delta to walk you through the problem. The first step in repairing anything is to cause no greater problem.

However, after having fielded literally thousands of phone calls over the past thirty-plus years as a designer, programmer, and installer of process control computers, I would imagine that whomever you speak with tomorrow is going to ask some fairly basic questions (unless there is a common programming miss-step that could cause a GFF error code), such as:

1. Have you checked your breaker box for a blown fuse or breaker?

2. Have you checked the wiring for proper connection.

3. Do you have the equipment and experience to check the voltage going into the VFD?

4. Do you have the equipment and experience to check the voltage going from the VFD to the spindle?

After studying the manual and reading the instructions on Shopbot's download page about installing a spindle, I would still have to guess that there is a cable connection problem. There is always the possiblility that you're one of the lucky people that gets a piece of eletronics that decides to die within the first few minutes of operation. Sometimes that just happens - with no blame or fault on your part implied. In fact, I have a customer that has bought well over $1,000,000 worth of photoprocessing equipment from Kodak, Bremson and Lucht (three huge names in the photoprocessing industry). They always seemed to get equipment that needed repair immediately after installation, to the point that they started asking Kodak to schedule a repair technician to be on site one week after installation was completed.

One last point, almost always, before buying new equipment, I call the company's service department and ask a dumb question, usually a question about something that is clearly explained in their literature or on their web site. The purpose in asking the question is to see whether the company treats complete idiots with respect or whether they act like idiots themselves. The people at Shopbot and at PDS earned excellent points. They handled my questions as if I were their most important (future) customer. By doing that, Shopbot earned my business last July and Shopbot/PDS earned my business for the spindle that is on its way. I don't think you have anything to worry about, even if a spare part is required.


Ryan Patterson
06-27-2005, 09:37 PM
Thank you for your help and suggests. Solve the problem there was a broken wire in the spindle housing. I repaired the broken wire and tried it again. There was a new problem the VFD was not reporting any errors but the spindle would not start. Checked the output volts and was only getting 60 when I should have 230V. I talked with PDS today and determined that the short in the spindle housing caused damage to the VFD. PDS is sending me a new VFD should have it in a few days.

06-28-2005, 01:20 AM
Ryan, thanks for coming back and giving us the "closure" on the problem. Wish more guys would do that.

06-28-2005, 02:07 AM
Ryan: Glad the problem is solved. Don't hesitate to let them "talk" you through wiring them up when it arrives. I went through a similar problem and they were spot on customer service.