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Topic: Hacking a vacuum cleaner (Read 889 times) previous topic - next topic

Johan_Ha

I thought of attaching a vacuum cleaner to an old reed organ. This has been done before and there needs to be a device inbetween, which lowers the underpressure. But my old vacuum cleaner has a speed regulator. Anyone know how I could hack the speed regulator? There is a slide for the control and it feels like a potentiometer, but some pages say the vacuum has five speeds.
Anyway, I'm looking for solutions for reducing the power, either by hacking into the regulator or replacing it with something else. I think the AC motor has some lowest speed, where it still runs ok without risk of stalling and causing some unwanted electric problems. At that speed it would also be very quiet, which of course is a bonus for my reed organ project.
The vacuum I intend to use is an Electrolux Oxygen and the motor looks like this:
https://shop.electrolux.co.uk/Vacuum-Cleaners/Vacuum-Cleaners/Motors/Vacuum-Cleaner-Complete-Motor/p/1131503052

Or are these usually DC motors and the speed regulator includes a rectifier?
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If you ask for help and write 'u' instead of 'you' because you think it's convenient, I will write 'no' instead of 'yes'. For same reasons.

sherzaad

I thought of attaching a vacuum cleaner to an old reed organ. This has been done before and there needs to be a device inbetween, which lowers the underpressure. But my old vacuum cleaner has a speed regulator. Anyone know how I could hack the speed regulator? There is a slide for the control and it feels like a potentiometer, but some pages say the vacuum has five speeds.
Anyway, I'm looking for solutions for reducing the power, either by hacking into the regulator or replacing it with something else. I think the AC motor has some lowest speed, where it still runs ok without risk of stalling and causing some unwanted electric problems. At that speed it would also be very quiet, which of course is a bonus for my reed organ project.
The vacuum I intend to use is an Electrolux Oxygen and the motor looks like this:
https://shop.electrolux.co.uk/Vacuum-Cleaners/Vacuum-Cleaners/Motors/Vacuum-Cleaner-Complete-Motor/p/1131503052

Or are these usually DC motors and the speed regulator includes a rectifier?

I think I would got with trying to mod the regulator to set the speed (if you post a picture of the actual PCB might even be able to help! :) ). but why post here? are you planning to an arduino with it...?

Johan_Ha

I haven't opened the vacuum yet to get a look at the PCB. I tried to Google for it, but could only find info on how to order a new regulator for some 25 €. No images of the regulator. Seems to be an industrial secret :)
I'm still using the vacuum as a vacuum, but I'm planning to buy a new one. So that's one reason why I haven't opened the thing. Another is that it's 220 V and I'd like to know as much about the thing before I open it.
And I am indeed going to do an Arduino project of it. The reed organ will be playing midi files, the vacuum cleaner will create the underpressure needed (reed organs really suck (definitely no pun intended, they are great instruments)), an Arduino will control the midi stuff as well as regulating the pressure, if possible.
____________________

If you ask for help and write 'u' instead of 'you' because you think it's convenient, I will write 'no' instead of 'yes'. For same reasons.

Paul_KD7HB

You are just wasting time trying to vary the motor speed. Just open a vent on the pressure side to relieve the pressure until you get what you want. The other problem you will have is the heated air!

Paul

Johan_Ha

Heated air won't be a problem, because I don't blow it into the organ. I suck it away from the organ.
As I wrote, I'd like to run the motor on slowest possible speed, because that would probably the quietest mode, too. But I might end up in building a box with a sliding plate over a hole. A pressure gauge inside the organ and a servo doing the sliding. The wind chest inside the organ usually has a valve, which regulates the pressure. But it keeps noise when it opens. So using the vacuum with too high effect would cause a constant noise.

____________________

If you ask for help and write 'u' instead of 'you' because you think it's convenient, I will write 'no' instead of 'yes'. For same reasons.

Paul_KD7HB

Must be a very unique reed organ to use vacuum rather than the normal compressed air.

Paul

Johan_Ha

#6
Sep 22, 2018, 06:57 am Last Edit: Sep 22, 2018, 07:14 am by Johan_Ha
European reed organs use vacuum. Some American organs might use compressed air. But I believe this is more or less the standard mechanism:
____________________

If you ask for help and write 'u' instead of 'you' because you think it's convenient, I will write 'no' instead of 'yes'. For same reasons.

wvmarle

What you need is phase cutting - like a light dimmer. But as it's a motor you need a snubber circuit to allow the triac to switch off, or a "snubberless" triac which is designed for inductive loads.

Recently I had a project to control the power to a ~600W water pump, works great with phase cutting. Main problem was that such modules are not available on the market (either designed for resistive loads like lights and heaters - so no snubber, or lacking the zero crossing detection circuitry) so I built it myself. Works like a charm :-) The same controller will work for your vacuum cleaner motor, as long as it's using no more than 4A (880W for 220V).

The controller you have (you say "feels like a pot" - that's probably because it IS a pot) is most likely part of a simple phase cutting circuit as well.
Quality of answers is related to the quality of questions. Good questions will get good answers. Useless answers are a sign of a poor question.

Johan_Ha

The controller you have (you say "feels like a pot" - that's probably because it IS a pot) is most likely part of a simple phase cutting circuit as well.
Then this would be the part I could possibly hack. The pot creates a voltage divider. It could be replaced by a pressure sensor, which works as a voltage divider.
____________________

If you ask for help and write 'u' instead of 'you' because you think it's convenient, I will write 'no' instead of 'yes'. For same reasons.

Johan_Ha

For that, the controller needs to be a low voltage DC circuit, which I'm afraid it isn't.
____________________

If you ask for help and write 'u' instead of 'you' because you think it's convenient, I will write 'no' instead of 'yes'. For same reasons.

wvmarle

Indeed - that pot is almost certainly part of the high voltage circuit.

You may be able to move it with a servo or linear actuator.
Quality of answers is related to the quality of questions. Good questions will get good answers. Useless answers are a sign of a poor question.

Zapro

The motor in a vacuum cleaner is a so called 'universal' or 'series wound' motor. It has a stator and brushes for the armature. It doesn't care if you run it on DC or AC.

Try running it on low voltage DC - it might give you enough flow for your need! I've tried some on 20-30V DC and plenty of speed on it.

Also adjusting the speed with some PWM is much easier on DC.

// Per.

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