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Frequently Asked Questions

Can continuous duty motors/gearmotors be used intermittently?

All rated torques shown in our catalog are for continuous operation. Continuous duty products can be used intermittently. Operation at loads higher than nameplate ratings is possible for short periods as long as there are rest periods for cooling. Loads higher than obtainable torque for gearmotors are never recommended. The temperature of the motor should be monitored during testing to make sure it is not overheating.

Can Single speed AC motors and gearmotors ever be operated as adjustable speed?

AC three-phase inverter duty (PP), three-phase synchronous inverter duty (YP), and some permanent split capacitor (PSC or CI) designs may be operated at adjustable speed with suitable controllers.

Is an adjustable speed system ever appropriate for a single speed application?

Adjustable speed systems are sometimes appropriate for single speed applications. If the desired speed is not known or not offered in a single speed product, an adjustable speed system may be set to the desired speed. For a low volume requirement, this approach will normally be more cost effective than changing ratios or making up special gearing.

What is the IP rating of a 24A stock motor or gearmotor, and do you have an IP-44 seal kit for this product type?

Most 24A stock gearmotors and motors are rated IP-20, but we offer an IP-44 seal kit. The part number of this IP-44 seal kit is stock model 0976. Our type 24A-60P planetary gearmotors are rated IP-65 and do not require this kit

Which products can be operated with the drive shaft in vertical orientation?

Motors without gearing and K-2 gearmotors may be operated in any position. Standard Bodine gearmotors are designed for universal horizontal mounting with the motor portion or the drive shaft horizontal. Other mounting positions are possible, depending on the gearmotor type (and lubricant). Some gearmotors are oil lubricated. If these gearmotors are mounted in a position other than horizontal, the oil might find its way out of the gearbox as the motor shaft or the shaft seal wear out over time. When in doubt, please consult our technical support staff in Northfield (Chicago area). You can e-mail us at

What will happen if a 60 Hz AC induction motor is operated on 50 Hz?

A motor designed for 60 Hz operation will run at 5/6 rated speed on 50 Hz. This can be of concern for totally enclosed, fan cooled (TEFC) motors or gearmotors. For example, a motor rated 1700 RPM on 60 Hz will run at 1400 RPM on 50 Hz. When the motor fan runs slower, the motor winding will receive less then the expected cooling.

Bodine 60 Hz permanent split capacitor (PSC) "Cl" motors will run hotter on 50 Hz, and typically require a capacitor change and derating. The motor temperature should be monitored during testing to make sure it is not overheating. Bodine split phase (or "Sl") motors and gearmotors that are rated for 60Hz should not be operated on 50 Hz because the internal centrifugal cut-out switch will not cut out correctly and might damage the start winding. Consult the factory for a 50Hz solution.

Can more than one motor be operated from a single control?

Operation of more than one motor from a single control is not normally recommended (PMDC or BLDC). However, when cost is a primary concern, a multiple motor/single control system with either permanent magnet motors and control or 3 phase motors and control may be successfully implemented. More than one AC three-phase, inverter duty motor/gearmotor may be operated with a single AC speed control (=inverter, = adjustable speed drive), as long as the sum of the motor currents does not exceed the rated output current of the control. Motor speeds should not fluctuate as long as the motors are not overloaded and the sum of the motor currents does not exceed the rated output current of the control.

Should I use the AC or DC setting on my ammeter when measuring the current through my Bodine motor/gearmotor?

It depends on why you are measuring the current. A DC current reading will be a good estimate you can use to size the motor for a torque rating. If you want to measure current in order to determine whether or not your motor/gearmotor is sized adequately (i.e. you want to load test your motor/gearmotor by measuring current and calculating torque from measured current), use a DC current reading.

An AC current reading will be essentially the same as the true RMS current through the motor. This is a better measure of the current that is flowing through the motor. This measurement will be more useful if you want to determine the amount of dissipated heat the motor is producing.

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