will this work as a power suppy for a hot wire foam cutter - RC Groups
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Jul 11, 2006, 06:38 AM
Registered User

will this work as a power suppy for a hot wire foam cutter

I have a regulated power supply
120vAC input, 13vDC output, rated for 10A
if I wire a ceiling fan speed controler to a receptacle
and plug in the power supply and use the speed controler
to control the input to the power supply
then wire the output of the power supply to my cutting wire
this should control the temp. of the cutting wire

has anyone tried this?
will it work?
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Jul 11, 2006, 08:22 PM
Dismembered Member...
arx_n_sparx's Avatar
There are much simpler ways of doing this. The ceiling fan speed control is a good start - all you'd need then is a 120/24V transformer good for 4 amps or so. Try this: http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bi..._4_AMPS_.html#
The hook up is pretty simple.

Jul 12, 2006, 07:32 AM
Crash Master
Gene Bond's Avatar
If the power supply is regulated, it will fight your attempt to lower the ouput voltage by lowering the input... If it's switch-mode, some fireworks could result... or silent death. The dumb transformers and/or simple battery chargers are a better choice.
Jul 12, 2006, 07:39 AM
Registered User
Thanks Brad and Gene

I think I will buy a transformer and wire it up the way Brad shows it.

Thanks for the help
Jul 13, 2006, 02:43 PM
Registered User
I use a big transformer based 12V lab power supply with a simple halogen lamp dimmer and volt-meter built into the same casing. Works fine.
Jul 13, 2006, 06:58 PM
Dismembered Member...
arx_n_sparx's Avatar
12 volts won't get you far - if you are looking for a long bow. I'd guesstimate a max of 36 inches. My long bow is about 56 inches. I have a shorter one and a "scroll saw" vertical wire table as well.

It's the current that does the work. The voltage is the "pressure" to push the current thru the wire.

The other thing that will throw things off is the type of wire you use. NiChrome has higher resistance than stainless steel - you might end up shorter than 36" if you use NiCr. Stainless steel - either solid or stranded - is best IMO. It can take much more tension as well. Recommended size is .015 to .020 inch. Try here:


Jul 13, 2006, 10:32 PM
Registered User
BlazerB52's Avatar
I've been using this setup for cutter below.
I use car battery charger(6v 2amp for bow cutter below) plugged into router speed controller.
Both were bought on sale at harbourfreight.com
Want to try a bow setup for wing cores to see if unit will handle length.
Does anybody have input if he can use this setup if he goes to 12v 6amp on charger setting and control heat with speed controller.
Guess this question is also for my benefit too.
Jul 14, 2006, 02:22 AM
Registered User

Foam Cutter supply

Try looking at http://www.willingtons.com/mymac/mmacphome.htm ther is a good design for controling the cutter wire current, it worked fine for me.


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