Thread Number: 75176  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
Custom Control for Unimatic
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Post# 989918   4/8/2018 at 13:25 by lebron (Minnesota)        

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Hello all. The timer on my 1955 Unimatic was toast so I decided to wire up my own semi-automatic control. The first picture is the wiring of the control board and fuse. This entire thing is serviced from the original motor protector switch. I know little about electricity so I'm sure it could have been done a lot better, but I just wanted to throw this together to see if it would work. The washer seems fine and functions just like a normal Unimatic. Is there a backplate for behind the console? I wish I knew more about electricity and computers, but I had an idea. This is controlled by manual switches. Instead of a board of toggles could I have a board of relays? How can I control the relays then with a computer? I would probably need my own little 12V system that could interface with a computer program. Fun to dream if I had more time and resources :D

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Post# 989919 , Reply# 1   4/8/2018 at 13:25 by lebron (Minnesota)        

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Feel free to check out the videos.

Post# 989920 , Reply# 2   4/8/2018 at 13:29 by lebron (Minnesota)        

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Does anyone know how many amps a Unimatic draws during spin startup?

What about during full speed spin?

And finally agitation?

I assume it would actually draw more amps during agitation than once it is spinning full speed?

Post# 989966 , Reply# 3   4/8/2018 at 20:08 by eddy1210 (Burnaby BC Canada)        

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Post# 989969 , Reply# 4   4/8/2018 at 20:48 by bajaespuma (Connecticut)        

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Post# 990033 , Reply# 5   4/9/2018 at 10:09 by turquoisedude (Ogden & St-Liboire (where??), QC, Canada)        

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Wow!  I love the idea of an 1140 rpm spray rinse.   Great job, Jed!

Post# 990037 , Reply# 6   4/9/2018 at 10:42 by swestoyz (Cedar Falls, Iowa)        

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Hey there Jed,

Great start so far! I've been using the following relay when restoring Unimatics, to control the motor via the original timer. It's listed at 30A @ 240v, which is plenty sufficient to carry the load for the transmission and moves the heat/current load from the delicate timers to these heavy-duty and easily replaceable relays.

Omron PN - G7L-1A-TUBJ-CB-AC100/120

If you are planning on having a low voltage controller/PC interface in place, I'd look at this 12v DC relay for the motor -

Omron PN G7L-1A-TUBJ-CB-DC12

For the water valve and the spin solenoid, you can probably get away with a relay that's rated at 10A 120v to control those devices.

Good Luck!


Post# 990099 , Reply# 7   4/9/2018 at 20:19 by jimmler (Nipomo, CA)        

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A couple controllers come to mind that are affordable and fairly easy to learn: Arduino and Raspberry Pi
There is tons of info and interface boards available for both platforms. You could even hook them up to the Internet and control them remotely, etc. I thought about doing this with my Maytags, but they are my daily drivers, so I'm a bit skittish about messing with them.

Good luck!

Post# 990444 , Reply# 8   4/12/2018 at 15:26 by Jetcone (Schenectady-Home of Calrods,Monitor Tops,Toroid Transformers)        
I totally forgot about Robertsí

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Rah-Hah Frigidaire test !! What a throw back! Nice Revive Eddie !!

That first machine is a Unimatic and it drew between 25-26 amps. The second machine, it is a Pulsamatic different altogether it drew 12 amps at spin-start before the start winding cutout.

I have tested several of my Unimatics and found the draw to be 25-26 amps in spin-startó HUGE !!

So that relay Ben pointed out will work just fine. I put one in my 57 Charcoal washer as the timer contacts were overheating on spin-start and that relay now lets the timer run cool and smooth

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