50hz electric motor at 60hz

Posted on 2008-11-04
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I have a piece of small equipment that was designed for 220VAC @ 50hz. (2A)
It has A/C motors, sensors, and some electronics & LED [I think] displays.
It is several years old and comes from the Orient

I realize that I *should* use a power converter that takes 110VAC @ 60hz and converts it to 220VAC @ 50hz, but I have a ton of small transformers that are 220/110VAC [in or out] and I would like to use one.

What kind of problems am I going to see if I just transform 110/60 to 220/60.
Question by:Horn E. Towed
    LVL 9

    Accepted Solution

    Electronics, & LED, (and probably any sensors, or lamps), should not cause any problems, unless there is a clock type function based on input frequency. They will already be going through power conversion, and although efficiency might drop a little on power converter designed for 60 Hz running on 50Hz, it is unlikely to give any noticeable difference. As far as motors are concerned, depends on type, if designed for constant speed dependant on frequency (essentially relay / shuttle type, as in most electric razors) then they will run slower. If a/c motors are standard type with speed based on voltage, and controlled simply by varying voltage accross them there should not be any difference.  I have run lots of US equippment, here in the UK simply using transformer, lights, hair dryers, even computers. Very unlikely you would cause any damage by trying, and only likely problems are that some functions might run slower.
    LVL 32

    Assisted Solution

    The frequency should not make much of a muchness but you may need to check any fuse arrangements for the power output if that is relevant to your device. At 2A your load is up to 440Watts at 110V you therefore should have fuse rated to 4A...

    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    I had a friend in high school who had an exchange student from Germany who had a digital alarm clock that ran wrong on US 60 Hz current. Apparently it was working off the power frequency to control its timing rather than more intelligently using an RC circuit of some sort. But, that's been more than 20 years ago.
    LVL 17

    Author Closing Comment

    by:Horn E. Towed
    Thanks PM & cap'n.
    Your info was spot on.

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