DIY - Coil Winding Machine

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Introduction: DIY - Coil Winding Machine

About: Hello Guys, I am techgenie, an Electronics hobbyists, tech tinker and developer. I dedicate my free time in designing and making various creative and innovative projects, RC toys, Incredible Gadgets, Awesome...

Over the recent days, i have been planning to make numerous projects that include electromagnetism. All these projects require copper wire to be wound uniformly in the form of a coil.

Winding few meters of thin enameled copper wire uniformly with hands seemed almost like an impossible task. Even if that could be done, it would require tremendous amount of time and work.

In this Instructable, i decided to make a coil winding machine at home. It is very simple to make machine and does the wire winding work almost perfectly.

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Step 1: Order Parts

Step 2: Watch the Video

There is no better tool than a good video for understanding any tutorial. A video makes it easy to understand and follow the procedure. However, it is also recommended to visit next steps for additional info and images.

Step 3: Let's Begin - Make Side Wall

  1. Take a piece of cardboard of about 8 x 5 inches.
  2. Using a stationary knife, cut the cardboard as shown in the image above.
  3. The H-shaped cardboard has middle segment of about 1.5 inches.
  4. Place the bearing at the top of the side segments and mark the points.
  5. Make hole at the marked points equal to the size of the bearing.
  6. Fix the bearing in the holes and secure them with hot glue.
  7. Make two such similar pieces of side walls.

Step 4: Prepare Base Platform

  1. Take a cardboard piece of about 9 x 8 inches.
  2. Cut 4 cardboard pieces of about 2 x 1.5 inches.
  3. Using super glue, paste 2 pieces at the two corners of the cardboard base.
  4. Place the side wall (with bearings) at the center of the smaller pieces and secure with hot glue. (Refer to the image above)
  5. Take the other two smaller cardboard pieces and place them at the remaining corners of the platform.
  6. Place the other side wall at the center of the cardboard pieces.
  7. Secure the side wall to the cardboard corner pieces using super glue.
  8. Make sure not to paste the corner pieces to the base platform.

Step 5: Make Frame for Second Side Wall

  1. Using a pencil, mark the position of the second Side wall.
  2. Cut two L-shaped cardboard pieces as shown in the image above.
  3. Paste the L-shaped cardboard at the outer boundary of marked position.
  4. Cut the wooden tongue depressor equal to the length of L-shaped cardboard.
  5. Using super glue, paste the tongue depressor at both the L-shape edges of the cardboard.
  6. Make sure that the other side wall can easily slide between the slit of the base and tongue depressor.
  7. If everything seems fine, proceed to next steps..

Step 6: Make Rotary Mechanism

  1. Take two wooden sticks of about 9" length.
  2. Remove the side wall and insert the wooden stick in the bearing.
  3. You can increase the thickness of wooden stick by wrapping some tape over it.
  4. Make sure that both the sticks fit well in the bearings of the fixed side wall.
  5. The wooden sticks in the bearing of the removable side wall should not be very tight because it will be difficult to remove it again and again after winding.

Step 7: Prepare Electronic Components

  1. Take a powerful DC motor.
  2. If you have a small plastic pulley then connect it to the motor shaft.
  3. If not, then apply some tape over the motor shaft.
  4. Using knife, carefully cut the tape such that a slit is formed in between.
  5. Refer to the schematic above, connect a switch and the battery to the motor.
  6. I used a DPDT switch to control the motor in both directions, however, a simple ON/Off switch is sufficient for this project.
  7. Using Hot glue, paste the motor below one of the wooden sticks.
  8. Also, secure the motor additionally by a cardboard and super glue because hot glue will melt once the motor gets hot.
  9. See the image above, paste the battery holder and the switch as well.
Note: I used 18650 Li-ion battery because it is capable of providing very high power. For charging the Li-ion Battery, you can also refer to my DIY -Battery Charger instructable or watch the Video.

Step 8: Finish the Project

  1. Connect the motor shaft and wooden stick with a rubber band, such that when the shaft rotates, the stick also rotates.
  2. Apply some tape at the edge of the stick, so that the rubber band doesn't come out while rotating.
  3. Remove the free side wall and insert the copper wire spool over one of the sticks.
  4. On the other stick, fix any cylindrical pipe.
  5. You can easily increase the thickness of wooden stick using tape, so that the pipe fits well.

Note: In the image, a black spool holder can be seen, This spool holder i used was 3D printed but any cylindrical pipe will also serve the purpose, only make sure to increase the thickness of the side edges using cardboard or the tape, so that the wire doesn't get removed from the sides of the pipe.

Step 9: Test and Improvements

  • Turn the switch ON and guide the wire on the pipe using hand.
  • A uniform To & Fro motion of hand from one end to the other will form a uniformly wound coil.
  • After winding apply some tape to prevent wire from getting lose.

This is a very useful machine for many projects to some people. However, after using it for a while, i feel that a few upgrades can really improve this machine..

  • Instead of using battery, it will be much useful if powered using a wall adapter.
  • Connect a potentiometer in the circuit to control the speed of the motor.
  • Attach a large pulley to the wooden stick, thus reducing the motor RPM and significantly increasing the torque, thus more control while winding.

These are the few upgrades that i can think of. If you have suggestions and few more possible upgrade ideas, feel free to leave a comment below. Your suggestions and feedback is always welcome.

So friends, this here concludes the instructable, stay tuned and SUBSCRIBE to receive regular updates. In case you might have missed, watch the video and see how i made this Coil winding machine at home.

Thanks For Your Support..!!

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40 Discussions

0
Pete Buxton
Pete Buxton

1 year ago

I also like the simplicity of the cardboard. This project could be made quickly and is perfect for winding electromagnetic coils on spools. Great job!

Fifteen years ago I made a coil winder from plans in a book by Jason Lollar (ISBN 0-9662599-2-0) specifically for winding guitar pickups. It took many tools and much time and effort to make. It uses a sewing machine motor-shaft-flywheel for winding, and an oscillating fan motor driving a cam to slowly and uniformly guide the wire to-and-fro. I needed the complexity to accurately wind #40+ wire on narrow, oblong magnetic poles. I later built and added an electronic counter circuit activated by a hall effect sensor on the rotary pulley.

winder01.jpgwinder02.jpg
0
RCs Stuff
RCs Stuff

Reply 4 months ago

Those sewing machine motors combined with the foot operated speed controller are some of the handiest things to have around. You can never have too many of them especially if you are a true gizmo-building hobbyist. I was curious as to what type of counting circuit you used which was connected to the hall effect sensor. I've got a gob of glass encased reed switches I bought as a close-out item from someplace so I could use 1 of those along with a magnet. I suppose I could salvage the counting circuit from an old C-Band satellite dish control box, but??? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Excellent job by the way. Take care.

0
Pete Buxton
Pete Buxton

Reply 4 months ago

Hi RCs Stuff,
It was 15 years ago when I made the winder, then added a counter to it. I used a magnet on the spindle and a Hall effect switch. I am sure a reed switch would work too, but I don't know the upper speed limit of a reed switch. The main IC for the counting is a MC14553 three digit multiplexed BCD counter with MC14511 7-segment drivers, and MAN-6740 7-segment LED digits. I attached the PDF that I used and basically doubled it for 6 digits.

0
RCs Stuff
RCs Stuff

Reply 4 months ago

Hey, thanks for getting back to me with the info. you provided. In the years of experience I had with those reed switches, they worked better to count a slower RPM than a Hall effect sensor. They were sort of a fairly high failure rate component that were used in old C-Band satellite dish positioning actuators. Usually, most actuators had only 1 magnet on a geared down wheel & the reed switch would, of course, close & send a pulse back to be counted by the control box or receiver in the house. Some of the last Von Weiss brand actuators I installed came with a geared down wheel that had 6 or 8 magnets on it. Fortunately, you could take some magnets out because that was too many magnets for a reed switch to keep up with. Either too many pulses for the controller to accurately count would occur or the count would be different no matter how or what direction you moved the dish. No, they weren't very accurate when trying to count a higher speed RPM. One thing I meant to ask you was what method or what type of ''thing'' did you use to keep each turn of the windings tight against the previously wound turn. When I was young, I was constantly buying magnet wire at ''Radio Shack'' & making something that needed an electromagnet. Although I tried to make the windings neat, my patience would shorten & I would end up winding it as fast as I could yet still try to make it neat. Having to hold a finger against the wire while winding it slowed me down & shortened my patience. I tried to see in your photos what you may have used to keep the windings smooth & even, but couldn't see what I was looking for. I'd like to make 1 of these to wind inductor coils used in crossovers for speaker systems I build. Thanks again for the info. & take care.

0
Pete Buxton
Pete Buxton

Reply 4 months ago

First of all, I am sorry to have hijacked the project post of https://www.instructables.com/member/Techgenie/ and didn't intend to do that. I think he did a wonderful job on making his coil winding machine!
The winder I made is from plans in a book listed below. I was lucky in 2003 to have bought Jason Lollar's book (ISBN 0-9662599) but it seems to be out of print now. Here is a current website about the book:
https://www.lollarguitars.com/blog/tag/basic-pickup-winding-by-jason-lollar/
The photo at the top of his website is from his plans in the book and is what I used to build mine. In his photo you can see how he used a motor and eccentric cam from an oscillating table fan to evenly move the wire guide back and forth while the main spindle pulls wire onto the bobbin, thus evenly distributing the winding. If you can find his book for sale, I highly recommend it.

0
Techgenie
Techgenie

Reply 1 year ago

#PeteBuxton Your machine looks awesome. Thanks for appreciating my work..:)

0
Pete Buxton
Pete Buxton

Reply 1 year ago

You're welcome, Techgenie. I really like your project and I voted for it.

0
Techgenie
Techgenie

Reply 1 year ago

Thanks #PeteBuxton...really thanks for the vote..

0
ŁukaszB1
ŁukaszB1

1 year ago

Add the counter. The simpliest is the magnet, reed switch, and a... pocket calculator. Simply connect the reed switch in parallel to the "=" button ( the calculator needs to have the pcb to solder to, It cannot be the foil type keyboard.) next enter the calculation: 1+1=... Every time you press the = button, the number should increase by 1 so 1,2,3,4,5 etc. This way you can count turns, but remember that the speed is limited! You can also use mechanical switch with level, but reed switch works the best!

0
RCs Stuff
RCs Stuff

Reply 4 months ago

I asked Mr. Pete Buxton about what type of counting circuit he made for his coil winder, but your idea is all that's needed. I've made countless devices which some form of counter would've been nice to have had, but not necessary. After tinkering on & professionally repairing so many different things for around 45 years, I'm almost embarrassed to admit I'd never thought of ''YOUR'' counter idea. I'm a huge fan of simplicity even though I constantly over-think things. THIS IS SO SIMPLE & SO RIGHT. Thank you & take care

0
Pete Buxton
Pete Buxton

Reply 1 year ago

I like your idea for making the counter. Nice that you mentioned the speed limit for that method.

0
ŁukaszB1
ŁukaszB1

Reply 1 year ago

I've found the speed limit after making a ... distance counter for the bicycle ;) Except adding 1 you can add calculated circumference of the wheel in kilometers or miles, and your calculator is going to measure distance. I've noticed that somew calculators (I've tested 3) have trouble with short pulses (as they are getting shorter if you are going faster) It was measuring till about 30km/h. Moving the magnet and reed switch closer to the axle was helping a lot as it was increasing the pulses length.

0
SIM1T2
SIM1T2

1 year ago

Techgenie, for upgrade you can use gears, shafts and other hardware from a used toner cartridge. And perhaps a motor from an old printer.

0
Techgenie
Techgenie

Reply 1 year ago

Yes, SIN1T2, it seems like a great tip to use gears and shafts but the motor from a printer has very low rpm, it takes quite a long time to wrap the coil.

0
NeilRG
NeilRG

1 year ago

This is the OTHER meaning of CAD. Cardboard Aided Design! The question I have is since you have a 3d Printer, Why not just print the parts?

The one bad idea you mentioned is using a potentiometer to control motor speed, unless of course you were going to use a PWM scheme to control your motor. A simple pot circuit would waste power as heat.

Good post. Thank you.

0
Techgenie
Techgenie

Reply 1 year ago

I do have a 3D printer but i am not very good in designing. Although i am slowly learning to 3D design objects. Can you suggest me some good sources from where i can learn 3D designing?

0
NeilRG
NeilRG

Reply 1 year ago

Dont sell yourself short! Most people could not design a working machine out of cardboard. I have the advantage of being a licensed Autodesk inventor user and thats all i really know personally. Make your base plate from wood, since it is too large for most printers. Then all you need to design is a single "L" shaped bracket with a short leg that has two holes for mounting and a large hole with a rim to accurately locate your bearing . Print four copies of that and you would be ready to go. The H shaped frames in the cardboard version would not be necessary because the plastic would be more rigid.

The L bracket idea should be within reach of your developing abilities, in short order :)

Good luck.

0
Techgenie
Techgenie

Reply 1 year ago

Thanks NeilRG...its a great tip. I will definitely get my hands on 3D printing and post some useful projects soon.

0
EarlWallaceNYC
EarlWallaceNYC

Tip 1 year ago

BTW: For the wooden sticks, I'm ordering "Loew-Cornell Woodsies Dowels 12"-Natural 3/16", from Amazon.
Per the video, I'll make them work with the 5/16th holes in the bearings.