Pbmaster11

Automatic Switch

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If you are asking the question you just qualified for not being able to achieve the goal ! The price seems pretty fair for the materials and effort involved. I imagine there are a very few skilled technicians able to achieve this with any level of safety.

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Wow! Such negativity! I am no engineer. I cannot with specificity draw up the plans for this. I have the basic concept. I would need to research some specs. But, I would not nay-say your capabilities just because you are asking here. All you need is a plan to follow and maybe some skill at electrical soldering. This cannot be difficult. Motorcycles have voltage sensing switches that ground excess generator power. The only question is how to assemble that switch. The box itself will be easy peasy.

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Im not sure what your trying to make or what you want to control. If you go over to phenix controls web site you can buy all the current sensing relays you need to control your entire shop based on whatever tool you happen to have running. For a single shop vac I doubt its worth the effort but if you for example wanted your dust collector to fire up with your table saw that is easy and inexpensive.

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Basically control a tool and have the vac turn on... exactly what the above link does... just how my brain works. how can I make that. whether it is cheaper or more expensive I am trying to see if it is possible..

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Basically control a tool and have the vac turn on... exactly what the above link does... just how my brain works. how can I make that. whether it is cheaper or more expensive I am trying to see if it is possible..

 

I get it but I doubt you can beat those prices just because they buy so many parts in bulk. If you want something more elaborate check out phenix his stuff is great as is the service.

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I have had good luck with refurbished M-Bright vac control switch devices. I just don't think that most guys can execute a safe control board for the price they charge. Parts seem to almost always cost more than a complete tool or device.

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Yes you can build one but there are lot of things to consider. Too many wood workers have fires every year from sparks in the dust bin, oily rags, soldering coper air lines with a torch and the list goes on. No need to build a $30 switch if you don't have the skils. I was a licensed electrician and when it came time to control my ClearVue cyclone I used all coper wire, all the correct gauge, a relay ( contactor actually) the correct contacts and I built it in a NEMA enclosure. The relay was 18VAC so I could run doorbell wire to all the blast gates. Even with all this planning, I put a switch on the bell transformer circuit so I could shut off power to the relay when I closed the shop for the night. Just in case a micro switch failed or some other anomaly, I didn't want stuff going on when I wasn't there.

In my opinion, You and your shop are important and not worth the risk.

BRuce

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Craftsman makes the same thing in a 4 outlet version...I think I paid about 12 bucks for it.  At that price you have to be a crazy person to invest even ten minutes into trying to make your own. :)   I tried gargling it but couldn't find it...I'm sure they're still out there if you look hard enough.

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That is why I am asking all of you! can't be that hard unless there is a control board or a special switch. I could buy one and take it apart.

 

Then you'll have one and not need to do that.

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I am educated as an electronics technician, and have over 20 years experience as an electrical engineer in heavy industry. You will absolutely spend more than $32 trying to make that yourself, and risk fire or electrocution if you don't fully understand what you are doing. I would just buy it.

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Even electrical engineers with a full set of tools and supplies buy these pre-made rather than building them.  But, if you want to build rather than buy for the experience, and you are willing to spend more for the satisfaction of making it yourself, then I think you need to ask The Electron Whisperer rather than The Wood Whisperer.

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I was reading an older book tonight and it showed an automatic switch that was tied into the electrical panel. A whole-shop automatic switch if you will. Could be something to investigate.

Sent from my HTC One using Tapatalk

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I looked into this once. It's a set of diodes. Buy one already made and when that doesn't do what you want it to, then make your own. Just my .02

Sent from my thumbs

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There are plans and tutorials online for making them. I didn't cost them out because I only want one and it didn't seem worth the effort for but half a dozen it might be cost effective. I would link to the plans but didn't save the urls.

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HELLO!!  We are all woodworkers here!  Think of all the times we have been told it would be cheaper/better/safer to buy something that we are building?  Sometimes its not about saving money, but rather trying and learning something new.  Using common sense and using old equipment to test with, I see no reason why PBMaster cannot give this a try. Yeah, he may blow up a piece of equipment, or get some sparks shooting, but he will also have learned what not to do.

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PB - kudos for trying it out. Just be careful with it (as you always should with electricity). I would think the component costs would add up but I guess you won't know till you come up with a plan and do the shopping. I'm wondering why you'd want 6 or 7 of them. The usual set up is for a shop vac to turn on when another tool is turned on. What are you planning?

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I use one of these -  http://www.woodcraft.com/Product/2005117/8394/WoodRiver-110-Volt-Dust-Collector-Remote-Control-Switch.aspx   BUT it was less than $50 when I bought it about 8 years ago and before Woodcraft put their house brand name on it.  Works great and I keep the button fob attached to my belt when in the shop.

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   I have seen other systems where you can use a remote control (looks like an car alarm key fab) to start a tool remotely, for me that would be a better option. 

 

This is what I use as my DC is in my garage away from my shop and they work well!

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I think folks way over complicate these things. Tool vac switches are cheap and you will never build one cheaper than you can buy it unless your stealing the parts. Some people wire their blast gates to the DC but that destroys the motor with frequent on and off cycles. Our new shop has to be wired so that when any stationary power tool is running the dust collector will start this is mandated by code. The same goes for spray booths the exhaust fan must be on before air is supplied to the dispensing system. A simple current sensor switch inside the panel is really all it takes. Any time there is ample current draw the switch is closed activating a relay. The sensors are cheap and simply slide over the wire and require no connection to the line. We have ours set up to where any 10a draw will power the the DC system and the draw from the DC holds the draw until its shut down manually at break times or end of work day. For a sander vac system its very easy to install a sensor inside a normal wall box with the outlets and as long the vac is plugged in down stream of the sensor it will turn on and off with the sanders. A small vac like a shop vac does not even require a relay you simply connect the vac outlet to the sensors built in switch. None of this is complicated, expensive or dangerous. If you can install a light switch you can easily set up these sort of systems. Our DC system cost less than $50 to set up and took all of about 10 minutes. There is no need to mess with stringing low voltage systems all over your shop to fail down the road. 

 

 

 

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