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Old 05-21-2012, 04:29 PM   #1
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Default need to extend the 3 ESC wires

Hi everyone,
I am doing a glow to electric conversion an need to extend the 3 wires from the ESC, is there any restriction to how long I can go and is there any special wire I need to use,

thanks for any help,
Ron
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:08 PM   #2
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You can probably add several inches without any problem. The wire size should be nearly the same size or larger than the leads from the ESC.

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Old 05-21-2012, 05:18 PM   #3
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You can add several feet without any issues.

The battery end is more an issue than the motor end. Think of how long those wires are inside the motor!

Use a good quality multi-stranded wire of at least the same size and you should be just fine.

Mike
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:49 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
You can add several feet without any issues.

The battery end is more an issue than the motor end. Think of how long those wires are inside the motor!

Use a good quality multi-stranded wire of at least the same size and you should be just fine.

Mike
Agreed.
Not only is there more wire inside the motor, its also wound around steel laminations. Those steel laminations increase the wires inductance by several orders of magnitude. Adding a few feet of wire between the ESC and the motor would only increase the inductance as seen by the ESC motor output wires by a few percent.

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Old 05-21-2012, 08:48 PM   #5
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Nope, that's not how electronics/electricity works. The same amp load is going to be seen by the motor wires as the battery wires, you are not going to get a difference by extending one over the other. As was mentioned above, use the same size wire or larger to extend them. The longer you extend, the higher gauge wire you should use. If not getting to crazy with the extension, stock size wire will most likely be fine.
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Old 05-21-2012, 08:58 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by NFA Fabrication View Post
Nope, that's not how electronics/electricity works. The same amp load is going to be seen by the motor wires as the battery wires, you are not going to get a difference by extending one over the other. As was mentioned above, use the same size wire or larger to extend them. The longer you extend, the higher gauge wire you should use. If not getting to crazy with the extension, stock size wire will most likely be fine.
Amp load isnt the issue with the battery side wires. Well, it can be but thats not whats being reffered to here.

Its voltage spikes or ripple caused by the additional inductance of longer battery to esc wires. Those spikes or ripples cause extra heating in the input filter caps and can quickly destroy an esc.

Ive run esc to motor wires that were just over 4 feet long on a setup pulling about 1100 watts with no problems. I used hi quality, hi strand count, silicone wire that was a good bit larger than what was on the esc though. I wanted to minimize power losses. The esc had 12 ga and I used 10 ga for the extension. I also braided the leads to help reduce interference. This was before 2.4.

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Old 05-22-2012, 01:00 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by NFA Fabrication View Post
Nope, that's not how electronics/electricity works. The same amp load is going to be seen by the motor wires as the battery wires, you are not going to get a difference by extending one over the other. As was mentioned above, use the same size wire or larger to extend them. The longer you extend, the higher gauge wire you should use. If not getting to crazy with the extension, stock size wire will most likely be fine.
The way I look at it from my College days is that internal resistance and voltage drop is the main area of concern. So a good quality low resistance wire of same or greater size than you are joining to was always the advice we were given.

Now I try to understand other threads that say longer wires will destroy your ESC etc. etc. ........ I can only assume that the AC nature of the ESC control is somehow affected ... but why should it destroy the ESC unless a high resistance / poor quality connection / wire is used ? And surely battery to ESC is purely a + / - cable issue ?

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Old 05-22-2012, 01:49 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
Now I try to understand other threads that say longer wires will destroy your ESC etc. etc. ........
Longer leads ON THE BATTERY side. Motor side = OK.

Mike
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:54 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
Longer leads ON THE BATTERY side. Motor side = OK.

Mike
Hi Mike
Just to clarify, longer wires on the motor side of the ESC is OK, but NOT longer lead wires between the battery and ESC

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Old 05-22-2012, 05:12 PM   #10
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That has been my experience. Extending the battery side wires causes more issues for the ESC with voltage ripple. The caps on the ESC help with that - but extending the wires makes it harder for your ESC.

I have extended them 12" or so but would not go much past that. For high amp many shorten battery side for this reason.

It is a hotly debated topic though.

Mike
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Old 05-22-2012, 05:16 PM   #11
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Castle ESC's do it with longer wires!
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Old 05-22-2012, 07:06 PM   #12
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In fact if anyone has a HABU you will discover ESC motor wire extensions of about 10" in it - fresh from the factory. Simply made too - they just cut equal length wires of the same size as the ESC uses and soldered on 3mm bullet connectors to make extensions. The HABU runs 4S and pretty high amps with a EDF and it doesn't seem to effect it at all.

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Old 05-22-2012, 10:55 PM   #13
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You need to look at the resitance increase over the wires. On a/c, the power travels around the wire more then through it, so size and genth isn't as critical. Compare you battery cables on your car to the outlet in your wall. On dc, the size if the wire is almost 100% of how long you can run it. Look at a dc wattage chart for dc amplifiers. Dc has a very hard time over distances, and higher amp load means larger wires and less efficency.
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Old 05-23-2012, 10:18 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
...On a/c, the power travels around the wire more then through it ...
Goedendag Haystack Skin-effect does not come into play at the frequencies ESC's use (8, 16 or 32kHz). This also goes for the harmonic (higher) frequencies in the power signal.

Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
...so size and genth isn't as critical ...
Yes it is, always. Even more when skin-effect were ... eeeeh ... in effect But in that case multistranded litze-wire is used. Manufacturers use litze-wire because it is easier to use/wind, not because of skin-effect.

Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
Compare you battery cables on your car to the outlet in your wall. On dc, the size if the wire is almost 100% of how long you can run it. Look at a dc wattage chart for dc amplifiers. Dc has a very hard time over distances, and higher amp load means larger wires and less efficency.
Both AC and DC signals suffer losses over distance. In fact, AC suffers more, for given amount of power transported. Hence DC very high voltage lines for power-transport between countries (no capacitive losses as well ).
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_v...direct_current

AC and DC refer to signal shape, not to voltage.

Originally Posted by NFA Fabrication View Post
Nope, that's not how electronics/electricity works. The same amp load is going to be seen by the motor wires as the battery wires, you are not going to get a difference by extending one over the other...
Wire inductance is the problem on the battery side, not wire resistance. It creates voltage spikes higher than battery voltage (think water-knock), with a frequency of 8, 16 or 32kHz (the selected ESC PWM chopping frequency).

All ESC manufactures and switching power supply designers say the same ...
Too long battery wires will kill ESC over time (also be careful with long leads insert in the circuit when measuring current).
See
www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=952523
Contents
  • Problem
  • Solution
  • Rule of thumb
  • Capacitor type
  • Capacitor polarity!
  • How to add extra capacitors
  • Expert/manufacturer opinions, rules of thumb, installation
  • Explanation/theory
  • Measurements
  • DIY pictures


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Old 05-23-2012, 02:00 PM   #15
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Thanks Ron - you always chime in with such great knowledge.

I have watched too many long battery lead ESC's die - I am convinced. I just smile at the guys that add the long wire and go "look it works". I am like yep - you realize not everything in life is works or not. Sometimes you are killing your stuff "working" it to death.

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Old 05-23-2012, 02:12 PM   #16
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Ron, a very good and informative comment to the erroneous comments made in previous posts.
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Old 05-23-2012, 03:53 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by rcers View Post
... Use a good quality multi-stranded wire ...
Silicone insulated.



The Dutch repair centre for Futaba, JR, HiTec and Simprop says he repairs/sees ESC's on a regular bases, due to long battery wires.

Mind you, it's not all black or white. At WOT there's no PWM chopping, no spikes. So, if one flies at WOT most of the time, one may never encounter the long battery wire problems. And manufacturer A has standard more and/or better quality capacitors on board than manucturer C.
Just run your motor at several percentages between 50 and 90% for some time and check capacitor(s) temperature.

Last week, Martyn McKinney, Steve Neu and Bruce Abbott wrote some clever answers in this thread, also addressing input capacitor temperature and why life is easier on a controller at WOT:
http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showt...iode+freewheel



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Old 05-23-2012, 09:38 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
You need to look at the resitance increase over the wires. On a/c, the power travels around the wire more then through it, so size and genth isn't as critical. Compare you battery cables on your car to the outlet in your wall. On dc, the size if the wire is almost 100% of how long you can run it. Look at a dc wattage chart for dc amplifiers. Dc has a very hard time over distances, and higher amp load means larger wires and less efficency.
Yeah, the automotive DC wiring is much heavier grade conductor because it's running at 12 Volts DC. If you were to wire your home for 12 Volts AC, you'd need to use 4/0 wire for everything. As an example, your 1500 watt toaster would require 12.5 Amps at 120 VAC, or 125 Amps at 12 VDC.

Or, if we used 120 Volt DC batteries in our model airplanes, we could also get by with #14 or #16 gauge wire. (Getting the model off the ground with a 120 Volt DC battery is another issue!)

The power lines use AC rather than DC because it's easier to change voltages with power transformers. The powerline voltages are typically around 13,200 volts, 29.9 KV, 34.5 KV, with transmission lines running over 100 KV. Some of those transmission towers are running 345KV or even higher. Higher voltage means lower currents for the same power delivery, and also allows smaller conductors, again for the same power delivery.

Even still, over distances of perhaps 10-20 miles or so, the inductance of the power line wires, along with all the power transformers hung on those wires often require very high voltage capacitor banks connected across the three phases to correct the 60 Hertz power factor. If you try to transmit high voltage power cross country, DC power is more efficient for very high power delivery over very long distances. (No voltage loss due to inductive reactance of the power lines over hundreds of miles of cable.) But then you need to convert that DC back to three Phase AC power, and those DC/AC converters running hundreds of kilovolts tend to be rather expensive.

As for measuring the current drain of your model airplanes, one option is the Sears Craftman #82369 AC/DC clamp on ammeter. It's got ranges of 0-40 and 0-400 Amps, AC AND DC, and can measure by just clamping its jaws around one battery wire. Note that most clamp on ammeters are AC only, not useful for our electric models.

The current on the motor wires will be a little less than the battery current, since that two wire battery current is divided between the three (three phase) wires leading to the motor. (Yes these brushless motors are three phase motors)

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Old 05-24-2012, 08:25 AM   #19
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Interesting stuff .............

As another says though - various ESC's from different brand labels have different length cables ...plus the model manufacturer who extends cables for his design....

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Old 05-24-2012, 12:29 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by kyleservicetech View Post
... Getting the model off the ground with a 120 Volt DC battery is another issue! ...
Don't worry Denny, you could/must reduce battery capacity accordingly by a factor 10: same amount of energie stored, same weight.

BTW if you are looking for high voltage high current controllers, e.g. 24s (120V ) and 200/300/400A... They even have a twin-controller in their program. All controllers available without water-cooling:
www.fightercatracing.com
Discussion
www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1449934

You might want to take up welding




Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
... As another says though - various ESC's from different brand labels have different length cables ...
No problems with standard stuff/configuration, the controllers already have input capacitors onboard to compensate for a certain amount of total wire length. The issue arises when extending battery wires.


Standard onboard caps plus extra unit
More pictures on www.yge.de/caps2.php, spent 10minutes looking for these pictures onwrong controller site, www.mgm-compro.com




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Old 05-24-2012, 04:39 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
Interesting stuff .............

As another says though - various ESC's from different brand labels have different length cables ...plus the model manufacturer who extends cables for his design....
Methinks that maybe those ESC manufacturers that place extreme limits on the length of wire on their ESC's are running their mosfets pretty close to their absolute maximum ratings?

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Old 05-24-2012, 04:44 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by ron_van_sommeren View Post
You might want to take up welding
LOL
I do have a 180 Amp Lincoln AC welder in my garage. When I accidentally shorted out a 6S2P A123 pack while soldering it together a few years ago, the resulting arc sounded just like that 180 Amp welder. (It burned a hole right through the top of one of the A123 cells, ruining it.)

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Old 05-24-2012, 05:19 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by ron_van_sommeren View Post
They even have a twin-controller in their program.
www.fightercatracing.com
Kind of strange this came up.
For the last couple of weeks I had a thought in my mind that since it is not possible (99% of the time) to wire 2 motors to 1 ESC. I was thinking of a special ESC that would have 1 signal lead in to the speed controller board, but would have 2 separated output boards ( maybe opto isolation)

I would think this could be made to lock 2 matching motors to the same RPM.

Would be real nice for twin engine airplanes

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Old 05-24-2012, 06:05 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Wildflyer View Post
Kind of strange this came up.
For the last couple of weeks I had a thought in my mind that since it is not possible (99% of the time) to wire 2 motors to 1 ESC. I was thinking of a special ESC that would have 1 signal lead in to the speed controller board, but would have 2 separated output boards ( maybe opto isolation)

I would think this could be made to lock 2 matching motors to the same RPM.

Would be real nice for twin engine airplanes
You've brought back memories of tuning multi glow engines to run similar rpm ... the hours I've spent at that ....

It's funny that as you got closer to matched - the sound changed dramatically ... such that you could do it just on sound, check with a tacho and it was pretty close to spot on ...

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Old 05-24-2012, 06:16 PM   #25
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