Slowly chiseling away. I got the terminals set up, all the motor set up, disabled most faults in advanced configuration and I now have the drive out of fault, temp sensor back working, and ready to drive waiting on the DC bus.

I think if I read the manual right with my configuration that should be about 370VDC, but I guess we will see? The VTAC9 Rockwell Automation manual is really detailed in some regards but lacking in regards to technical information. Not surprising after looking at the set up the VTAC controller has no idea it’s missing the AC input. The drive does start up right at about 196V on the DC bus … if you have to get one running just enough to configure it. I could/did configure the drive for a lower motor voltage but I won’t know if that effects the requirement for the DC bus; I doubt it.

Now.. I just need to suck it up and buy some batteries. I put in a big order with @Digikey but it’s all subsystems stuff. I’ve never worked with CAN before but the new Elektor has a article about a CAN tester and it interested me enough to try it out.

I also noticed @Sparkfun has a neat little bluetooth module out that I was considering picking up for $59 .. but then they also have a “Silver” one that’s $39 and has 3.3-6V input both Vcc and inputs. They’re small and are set up for TTL level RS-232. My current module is larger, has a lot of pins I don’t use (although I do like the handy link output).

With all this need for HV DC I’m seriously considering building a home-brew HV power supply. You have probably seen my bench I have some cheapo Elecnco 0-20/5/-12/12,  a B&K 1601, and some miscellaneous other fixed sources. I have my eyes on a B&K 9124 and a B&K 9110 (tear down:!teardown%29/ ).

VFD waiting 'In Precharge' after configuration.

VFD waiting ‘In Precharge’ after configuration.


  1. Chas


    Small Update: Using the first box of batteries I purchased and two DC power supplies something happens around ~255VDC. My power supplies cave in on current. I’ll need another 16 batteries to make up for the different in 1.2Ah “test” batteries and the DC power supplies at 50V+20VDC. They were the only isolated supplies I have I guess. Time to put this aside until I can fork out $500 on batteries which my wife provided a solid grimace on.

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