Sunday, 3 June 2012

Dang! It's Working!

The basic electrical tests and scoping show that the new PCB layout is working fine.  Time to hook it up to an AC motor for the real deal.  First of all I wanted to take a look at the stock configuration of my Ariston RD11 turntable, so here is a picture of the 'underbelly' and we can see the phasing cap (yellow) that feeds the second coil of the AC motor.  I took the oscilloscope to the motor to see what the two phases looked like as per stock.
Close up of phase capacitor
Ariston RD11 showing AC motor

Here in the picture you can see that the phase shift is fairly decent by the cap but the waveforms themselves are not the best looking sine waves ever seen.  This is off the 120VAC line voltage.  You can see that the capacitor does affect the quality of the waveforms to some degree, both being affected.

AC at motor coils without TT controller
Time to remove the motor and connect it to the Bi-Onda controller.  I first calibrated both sine waves at the tranformer outputs to 119VAC rms as measured on my multimeter.  I then connected each channel to a coil as per the Ariston configuration: AC direct coil to sine A and the cap shifted second coil to sine B outputs.  When I started up the controller and ran the motor, beauty, turning perfectly.  The motor runs nicely.  I then scoped the outputs to the motor like I did before and here is the photo, the waveforms are very nice and clean sine waves.  Me happy.

AC at motor driven by the BiOnda Controller - clean!

I did check the output and it looks like the voltage dropped about 9VAC with the motor connected and running.  Since the power supply is unregulated, I expected some voltage drop and am happy with that and a small drop should not affect the overall performance.  Now this of course is a no load condition, no platter is being turned so I will have to check it again when the TT is assembled and running the platter.  One very nice thing that I did notice, is an improved torque.  With the motor in stock condition off of the AC I noted how easily I could stop the motor from turning by gripping it with a particular amount of pinch of the spindle.  When driven by the motor controller I noticed that it was still possible, but I had to exert more pressure, thus increased torque.  Nice, not sure I was going to have more torque, but looks like I do.

I also tried changing the sine frequency to alter the RPMs and the motor responded nicely.  I did notice however in 45RPM mode the motor had a problem in starting it's rotation.  As soon as I gave it a bit of a spin it would run nicely.  This likely means that I should add an acceleration routine to the controller software to help the motor spin up, especially for the 45 RPM mode.  I also noted that the motor was spinning backwards, no big problem, just reverse the hookup of sine A & B outputs, but I will look into the software too, could be I incorrectly calculated the direction of phase shift of sine B, which would easily be corrected by changing the subtraction to addition or vice versa, which ever is currently in the code.  Will test that in the next couple of days.

I did play with the phase change too and was able to sense a slight change in the motor's vibrations as I went far off the 90 degree mark in either direction. In the end it felt like a phase shift of 91.4 degrees seemed to provide the least amount of vibration in my hand. 

Next, will have to improve the heatsink, I have been holding off on getting a good one together but I did notice the small aluminum plate I was using getting a bit too warm, so will have to find an appropriate one.  Then I just need to hook it up fully and spin some vinyl.  I do want to do some restoration and upgrading of the Ariston at this point too, so I may do this before putting the unit back into full operation.

Thanks for tuning in, keep checking back!
If you have any questions, feel free to leave it in the comments.

1 comment:

  1. Gee that is quite a difference in the waveforms. Keep up the good work - looking forward to developments