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Schaublin 70-CF lathe

csb70

New Member
I recently convinced my boss to purchase a very well-equipped secondhand Schuablin CF-70 lathe from Switzerland. I may have put the cart before the horse though and would really appreciate any info. I assured my boss that the lathe would only require a little electrical work in order for it to work here in Canada. It requires 3 phase 400V 50/60HZ. I had already spoken to an electrician who confirmed that worst-case scenario we would need a transformer which could cost up to $4k plus some wiring. My boss was ok with this. I was talking with another electrician recently who asked if it was CSA or ULC approved and I was like "huh". He said that it was very important that it is either CSA or UL certified. After spending many hours on google searching this topic, I have read such conflicting information that I really don't know what the requirements are. The lathe will be used by 3 employees including myself and I'm really hoping to find someone here that has had a similar experience importing machinery from Europe.
I feel sick to my stomach that I may have caused a big problem and unknown expense for my boss.
 

trials20

Cobble Hill
Your electrician is correct on having a CSA certification. I install a lot of offshore equipment (EU, Asia) and they do need a CSA approval sticker some where on the unit, this is done with having a CSA inspector coming out and reviewing the electrical drawings through your electrical contractor. Mostly looks a grounding and overload changes if needed.
Phone around the lower mainland and find a contractor who has the knowledge on this process and it will be a painless procedure.
Also check with Schuablin as they may already be approved for the North American market.
 

csb70

New Member
Thanks trials20. Great idea checking with Schuablin. Appreciate your reply...makes me feel a little more at ease.
 

gerritv

Gerrit
Re: transformer, it would be worthwhile checking on replacing the motor to reduce this bill considerably. A 3ph 230vac with VFD perhaps? Schaublin have the 70-CF-Mi which is 230v so not the first case of replacing the motor.
 

Mcgyver

Ultra Member
It's hopeless, the only thing is the have me come and collect it. :) (joking aside, I'm a buyer for Schaublin 70 & 102 stuff if it doesn't work out)

These are small machines drawing little power. 4K for a transformer? Time to find a new electrician.

Do you have 3P? If yes, you could just plunk a 3P 220-440 (or 400) 3P transformer in front of it. I'd go 440, I suspect it will be far easier to find. A 400V motor should be able to handle 440.

If you don't have 3P, its still fairly easy. For one of mine I have the factory 400V volt motor. I bought an SEW VFD (the amazon cheapos would be fine, but they aren't there for 400V and definitly not CSA approved lol) and single phase transformer from kijiji for $50 and am in business. You can hold the transformer in one hand (they're huge for this wattage) and its adequately rated, I can't see it being being more than 10-15% of the $4K.

Its whats called an autotransformer, single winding, single phase. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autotransformer. Its acually probably 440, but close enough...a 400V motor won't burn up on 440 especially with a quality VFD where you limit the current.

Anyway, simple wiring. 220 into the transformer, 440 out to to the VFD, both 1P. VFD directly to the Motor. The VFD will provide 3P to the motor from 1P in. You do have to rewire the controls to run low voltage off the vfd but that's usually not the end of the world.

Ask away if I can help.
 

Tom Kitta

Ultra Member
I just saw - like 3 days ago a transformer you need sell for around 150 CAD. Smaller one. Would be perfect for you. I also own ideal for you transformer but I am using it for my machines.

Of course you can always replace the motor - but you may also need to replace starter and some other electronics.

Finally you can quite cheap get a single phase transformer to 440 / 460 / 480 or whatever and VFD the input.

The Schuablin CF-70 is CAS certified already unless you got it brand new from Switzerland. Since you got it second hand just look for CAS sticker. Some idiots put stickers on shrink wrapping and stickers fall off (!) or get removed. At that point you need to hunt for replacement sticker. If this was sold in Canada by a dealer - it is CSA certified. Machines that are repainted also suffer from missing CSA stickers.

What is the motor power on this machine? It does not look big - thus getting even a brand new transformer should be quite cheap - for up to say 1/2 hp you do not need to worry - they can be had brand new for voltage you need (exact) for few hundred CAD - i.e. custom build just for you! Things are a bit "rough" if you say need brand new transformer for 5hp or more - now you are talking major $$$ like 1500 CAD++.
 

cuslog

Super User
Premium Member
CSA cert. / sticker shouldn't be too big of a problem. Years ago, lived in BC, was in wood related industry. I bought some Maffel (German)(230V) wood working saws. Importing dealer paid a qualified local (BC) electrician to make a couple changes (grounding and cord ends IIRC). Up-charge IIRC was ~ $100 per unit. Lathe may be a bit more involved but still shouldn't be more than a few hundred $.
 

phaxtris

(Ryan)
Premium Member
Premium Member
4k on the transformer is pretty high

I just helped setup a shop with a guy, needed another transformer, 230 up to 480 7kw or may have even been 11kw, I don't remember for sure, bought a reman from Ontario, shipped to Calgary, all in was under 1500, he has a few other machines that run on transformers and has bought used transformers for under 500 ea

It's worth shopping around, and keeping an eye out

Like it has been said, a motor swap might even be cheaper/easier
 

Mcgyver

Ultra Member
I checked with one of our engineers as we face this occasionally on new commercial items we import and install in our equipment. You hire someone to come and inspect it and apparently every component, motor, switch, contactor possibly even wire has to have the CSA or UL approved designation or they have to be changed out. Items in Europe not intended for export to NA are typically CE but not CSA.

It seems an asinine thing, what economist call a non tariff barrier to trade, to not accept CE, yet that is the current reality. Contrast that to the very shakey electronics sold to by Amazon every day that have received no inspections. (some of that stuff is outlandish, great that its low cost....but don't leave it plugged in!)

As it is very likely the motor will only be CE (Tom, it sounds like this was purchased used in Europe and imported) the best approach in a workplace where it has to be CSA is probably to rip all the electrics out and replace. I'd go with a 220 3P motor drive by a VFD, its smoother than 1P and eliminates the need for a transform. either 1P or 3P, either will work. They are about 1.5 hp, using a quality motor and VFD I think the hardware would be <$1000 plus the electricians time and a bit for machining on the pulley (the Schaublin ones I've seen are metric and won't fit a standard NEMA motor)
 
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csb70

New Member
Thank you all so much for your replies. I really appreciate all the help and advice. Tom, the machine was originally sold to Bulgari in Switzerland (confirmed by the seller and Schaulblin) and I purchased it from a machine reseller in Switzerland. Hahaha Mcgyver...not for sale just yet. I reached out to Schaublin asking if the equipment is CSA approved in Canada. Their response was "The electrical equipment is adapted to American and Canadian standards". That doesnt't really answer my question completely but wondering what some of you thought. I have taken many pictures which I will attach here. What I have noticed is that virtually all decals that have the CE mark also have the CSA and or UL marks. The only exception I can see is that the motors themselves only have the CE mark. Based on this do you think it's still better to repalce the motors? There are two motors. The main one for the lathe and a secondary motor for the milling attachment.
 

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csb70

New Member
I am also attaching some pictures of the accessories as I'm pretty sure some of you will appreciate how well-equipped this lathe is. Although never enough...
 

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Mcgyver

Ultra Member
what a great set up! On the motor, I think you will have to, however that will depend on the inspector. Its my understanding that all components must have CSA or UL stickers. Great news all the rest of it has the stickers.

If you do replace the motor, unfortunately you can't just replace it with a 220V motor. To not have to re-engineer the rest of it to 220 you'd replace it with a 440 volt motor. Not as common here as 600, but easy to find new. We put them on machines being exported to the States. That leaves you with the challenge of creating 440V 3P in. The VFD may ore may not be able to handle 1P in (read up in the manufactures material), some can and some can't. If it can't, the solution is a (CSA approved lol) auto transformer in front of it. Everything else should be work with 1P.

In my experience not all electricians know or have experience with motor control systems so make sure you use someone who gets it as getting this running borders on design work.....piece of cake in the basement, but as you point out, all the T's have to be crossed in the workplace

the motors are all labelled 230/400 so a new VFD and some tinkering with wiring and an inspection might solve the motor issue as well?

What I was told was if the motor only has CE its not going to fly for CSA approval. No guarantee that is right but its from an Engineer at my place who's had to deal with it before
 
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Tom Kitta

Ultra Member
Thank you all so much for your replies. I really appreciate all the help and advice. Tom, the machine was originally sold to Bulgari in Switzerland (confirmed by the seller and Schaulblin) and I purchased it from a machine reseller in Switzerland. Hahaha Mcgyver...not for sale just yet. I reached out to Schaublin asking if the equipment is CSA approved in Canada. Their response was "The electrical equipment is adapted to American and Canadian standards". That doesnt't really answer my question completely but wondering what some of you thought. I have taken many pictures which I will attach here. What I have noticed is that virtually all decals that have the CE mark also have the CSA and or UL marks. The only exception I can see is that the motors themselves only have the CE mark. Based on this do you think it's still better to repalce the motors? There are two motors. The main one for the lathe and a secondary motor for the milling attachment.

If it was imported you will need CSA approval. It is a blue sticker. Can cost up to few hundred $$$. It is necessary for all equipment in Canada - all stuff sold at say Busy Bee have this already rolled into the price at the store.

The reason a lot of stuff says 400V or 380V is b/c that is (was) standard 3ph voltage in Europe. (380v was back when outlet 1ph was 220v). Then they moved up to 240v - nominal is 230v - same as us, and the 380v was bumped up to 400v nominal. 220v * 1.73 == 380v - Europeans were smart like that.

This means that all of their motors marked 230v etc. are OUR voltage. Identical.

Since most common voltage in Europe is 3ph old 380v new 400v nominal machine was wired for that - makes total sense.

What voltages and power you have at work? Do you have 3ph? Do you have 460v nominal (480v) do you have 600v? What do you have? This is something I think pp should ask and I do not see an answer.
 

phaxtris

(Ryan)
Premium Member
Premium Member
That motor is already a 230 motor, just buy a CSA approved single to 3 phase VFD and your gtg

Edit: I just noticed you already have 2 vfds in the box, any reason those can't be swapped out for 2 single to 3 phase

assuming you don't have 3phase power ?
 

csb70

New Member
I apologize for my ignorance of electricity...while I respect it greatly I have very limited knowledge of it. After some research, we do have 3 phase 120/208V. I have attached a pic of our breaker box.
Does this help?
I'm really thankful for everyone's assistance here. Makes me so proud to be Canadian.
If anyone can recommend a CSA inspector in the Lower Mainland, it would be greatly appreciated.
I think I should probably be looking for a new electrician as well as mine does not seem to know much about this type of thing.
Thanks again for all your replies.
 

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phaxtris

(Ryan)
Premium Member
Premium Member
a 230 motor will run on 208, you will need to have someone switch up the wiring in the junction boxes of the motors to have the run as a 230 motor, i would assume by seeing the tags on your vfd's that they are set up for 380....at the very least someone should confirm how they are wired before plugging it in

as for the vfd's i dont know, someone else can chime in with more vfd knowledge, the tags all have them as 380v vfd's, i dont know if you can feed them less and everything is hunky dory, or if you need specific 230v vfd's....you might give looking the manual up on the net a go, probably says in there
 

Tom Kitta

Ultra Member
I would not bother with re-wiring - if you have 208 3ph just get a transformer at auction to go 400 volts or 415 or so and be done with it. May also be much cheaper option - especially if you get one locally.

If you get it off eBay you probably spent under $500 or so.

Easy plug and play solution - hook transformer to 208v 3ph, check taps to get you your 415v or around that, plug machine in, enjoy.

Get CSA approval before starting any work.
 

phaxtris

(Ryan)
Premium Member
Premium Member
If the vfd's can run at the lower voltage its definitely cheaper just to move a couple marrets in the junction box, no different than it is on any dual voltage motor
5 minutes in each box and no materials required
 

Tom Kitta

Ultra Member
If the vfd's can run at the lower voltage its definitely cheaper just to move a couple marrets in the junction box, no different than it is on any dual voltage motor
5 minutes in each box and no materials required

VFDs are indicated at 380v - 480v so unlikely they can also run at 240v - at least not supported by the label.

Also its not that easy, you can easily change motor wires - but then you need to deal with all magnetic switches for each motor. These may or may not have the amp range and may have coil voltage of 400v or some control voltage. If control voltage you need to make sure control transformer has the right taps. It looks like there is a transformer that supports 230v and 400v - but not sure what it controls. Sometimes these guys control other electronics not magnetic switches coils. I.e. it all needs to be looked at whatever you can run at other voltage.
 
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