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InvisibleDr. Penguin
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Registered: 05/19/08
Posts: 1,036
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Fan Speed Control 101
    #206600 - 03/18/09 03:46 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)

Fan Speed Control 101


I. Know your fan
In order to control fan speed, you have to know what type of motor your fan uses. Motors can be divided into two categories based on power source AC, and DC. AC fans are those you plug directly into a wall receptacle (Vortex, Dayton, Can-Fans), for more information about AC motors go to numeral II. DC motors are generally found in small fans like computer fans and rely on a DC power source like a rectifier (wall wart) or battery. For more information about DC fans, see numeral V.

AC fan:


DC fan:



II. Know More About Your Fan
AC fans use many types of motors but three types are important to us cabinet-bedroom size growers, shaded pole induction motors, permanent-split capacitor (PSC) motors, and AC-DC Universal motors (Brushed Motors). For a list of motor type based on manufacturers, see numeral III. Shaded pole induction motors are simple single phase motors known for low starting torque and long duty cycles. PSC motors are also single phase motors but unlike shaded pole motors, PSC motors use a capacitor to help them start. AC-DC Universal motors are general purpose motors found in many household appliances like power drills and vacuum cleaners; their short service life makes them an unattractive option for fans. There are other types of AC motor that have been used for ventilation purposes, but aside from shaded pole, PSC, brushed motors, and three phase motors (which are beyond the scope of this course), ac motors are unable to be speed controlled without serious modification and/or risk.
There are primarily two ways to control the speed of these motors, voltage control and frequency control; see numeral IV for more information.

III. Fan Manufacturer List
This information is relevant as of march 2009 but always be sure to double check by contacting your retailer or fan manufacturer! Using the wrong type of control with your equipment puts the fan and your controller at risk. This section is always in need of additions and corrections so if you have anything to add, post it or send me a P.M. and I'll be sure to include it.

Permanent-Split Capacitor
-Dayton squirrel cage blowers (Generally PSC motors, but they also make a shaded pole version)
-S&P Mix-Vent TD line
-Grainger squirrel cage fans

Shaded Pole Motor
-Vortex
-Can-Fan
-Valueline
-Elicent
-Active Air

IV. AC Speed Control Methods

Voltage
-Rheostat (Old dimmer switches): Poor choice, excess power converted to heat.


-Triac (New dimmer switches): Poor choice, inherent problems with triac controls risk fan lifespan.


-Triac w/ Snubber circuit (Fan speed controllers, Solid state controllers): Good choice, snubber circuit removes most of the risk to the fan. Still not the best because it can cause some motors to hum.


-Capacitance level control (No hum fan speed controllers, 3 speed controllers): Good choice, only limited by the discrete speed choices, no infinite control.


-Variable autotransformer (Variac): Better choice, continuous sine wave of a lower voltage (unlike a triac which chops up the sine wave to acheive a decreased voltage) allows fan operation with no hum.



Frequency
-Varable Frequency Drives (VFD, AFD): Best choice, complex circuitry senses changes in the motor allowing it to vary frequency of the AC source as well as the voltage which maintains a constant torque, unlike voltage regulation.


V. DC Speed Control Methods
DC speed control is much simpler than AC speed control. In order to lower the speed of a DC motor we must lower the voltage, this is accomplished in various ways. Linear voltage regulation relies on resistors, and diodes to remove the excess voltage as heat. Pulse Width Modulation sends bursts of energy to the fan and the averaging effect results in a lower net voltage and reduced energy use.


--------------------
* My Cab
* How to Build a Grow Tent
* Fan Speed Control 101
* Easy Butane Extraction

Not responsible for advice not taken.


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Offlinemrspirit
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Registered: 01/24/09
Posts: 64
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Re: Fan Speed Control 101 [Re: Dr. Penguin]
    #206757 - 03/18/09 05:50 PM (7 years, 8 months ago)

Dr.Penguin

You have been bringing quite a bit of detailed information to this site. For that I thank you.


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Offlineethnoguy
E to the G
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Registered: 04/22/08
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Re: Fan Speed Control 101 [Re: mrspirit]
    #206803 - 03/18/09 09:03 PM (7 years, 8 months ago)

I refuse to use fans that aren't plug and play. I dread installing a light mover :lol:. I just like to keep it simple, and not burn the place down. Great posting there Dr. Surely it will keep a couple ppl from being idiots.

EG


--------------------


My Grow Closet

My Personal Cacti Pics


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OfflineKaptKid
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Registered: 04/20/08
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Re: Fan Speed Control 101 [Re: Dr. Penguin]
    #208179 - 03/24/09 01:35 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)

What timming.
Just got my SS2 reflector with a Vortex Fan, 449 cfm, 6". Was just wondering if the old fan control would still be good. That came from HomeDepot.After reading this I don't think so.

These Variac Autotransformer cost from $150
http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-AUTOTRANSFORMER-20A-0-140V-50-60Hz-variac_W0QQitemZ310130558248QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_DefaultDomain_0?hash=item310130558248&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1205%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A1%7C240%3A1318%7C301%3A1%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A50


to $500                                              http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-AUTOTRANSFORMER-36A-0-280V-50-60Hz-variac-240V_W0QQitemZ310130968445QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_DefaultDomain_2?hash=item310130968445&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1205%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A1%7C240%3A1318%7C301%3A0%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A50


I don't know shit about this stuff but I damn sure wouldn't spend $500 to control a $200 fan.

Will that 1st one work a Vortex?


--------------------
Child of the 60's, Tripping ever sence.


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Offlinepong
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Registered: 05/01/08
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Re: Fan Speed Control 101 [Re: KaptKid]
    #208234 - 03/24/09 08:48 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)

is the hum of a fan loud enough to cancel out the effectiveness of the dimmer that makes it hum?


--------------------
MARIJUANNNANNANNNANNNANNNANNANNANNNNNANANANAAAAAAAAA!!!!

MY GROW


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InvisibleDr. Penguin
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Registered: 05/19/08
Posts: 1,036
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Re: Fan Speed Control 101 [Re: pong]
    #208273 - 03/24/09 10:15 AM (7 years, 8 months ago)

KaptKid: I found my variac for 50$ after shipping. They are out there at good prices you just have to keep your eyes open. Your links don't work for me through my proxy so I can't check for sure but variacs are pretty simple, all you need is one that is made for 110v (it will say 140v-0v or something) that can also handle 4/3 of the current your fan produces which is generally small (I think mine uses .5 amps).

pong: Generally the hum is only really bad when you want to dial your fan back to a very slow speed. If you dial it back enough, the hum will get louder than the fan itself for sure. If you only going to adj your speed in the top quarter of its range the triac w/snubber should be fine, especially considering their price tag.


--------------------
* My Cab
* How to Build a Grow Tent
* Fan Speed Control 101
* Easy Butane Extraction

Not responsible for advice not taken.


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OfflineErgolineFamily
Registered: 03/29/09
Posts: 49
Last seen: 7 years, 4 months
Re: Fan Speed Control 101 [Re: Dr. Penguin]
    #209915 - 03/29/09 12:57 PM (7 years, 8 months ago)

Me and my fan just borke up, she claimed i was pre occupied with my greenery what do i do to wn her back guys?:heart: :mushroom2:


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InvisibleDr. Penguin
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Posts: 1,036
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Re: Fan Speed Control 101 (moved) [Re: Dr. Penguin]
    #331531 - 12/14/09 11:42 PM (6 years, 11 months ago)

This thread was moved from Marijuana Cultivation.

Reason:
.


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