Convert to Variable Speed Fan

Hello.

I bought the Air King 9218 18-Inch Pivoting Floor Fan and would like to convert it to a variable speed fan. It currently has a High, Medium and Low setting. For me, sometimes the low is too high when starting a training session and yet during the tough intervals, I’d like it to be on high. This gets to be even more important during the colder months as my basement has limited heat.

Has anybody come across any plans to add a variable speed control knob to a heavy duty fan to be within reach of their bike? I already have a remote for the outlet to turn it on and off.

Thank you
Brendan

Turn the fan on HIGH at the start and dress in layers that can be shed as needed during workout.

Ex: Long sleeve -to- short sleeve -to- tank -to- no shirt, etc. There are ample opportunities to do this during most workouts. Or, warm-up thoroughly to a stinking sweat prior to starting. :hot_face:

+1 to this. I wear a light jacket at the start of my workouts, and am shirtless by the end and drenched in sweat.

I think @DaveWh did a speed control mod?

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Yep - here’s my Facebook post. Use it every time I ride on the trainer.

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There’s a number of ways to do this ranging from easy/quick to hard/more time consuming.

On the easy/quick end of the spectrum is the following:

https://www.amazon.com/Casolly-Variable-Controller-Exhaust-Inline/dp/B07BMR4THQ?ref_=fsclp_pl_dp_1

But be aware that this approach may not work with your fan, and also be aware of potential overheating of the control box. I have not tried a controller like this for these reasons, so use your own judgement on if you want to try this approach.

The hard/time consuming approach is something like what I did.

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By the way, blower-type fans are usually a lot better than axial fans - quieter, faster airflow, and moves air in a more focused airstream.

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Thank you @DaveWh I have looked looked at controllers like this, but was concerned about overheating- that is why I was looking to see if anyone here tried it previously.

I did see the video of your project a while back. It was fantastic.

@batwood14 and @Brushman Thank you for your suggestions. These are better than the other option I have been doing (which has limited viability long term ) has been to ask my to adjust the fan.

Brendan

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On the easy/quick end of the spectrum is the following:

https://www.amazon.com/Casolly-Variable-Controller-Exhaust-Inline/dp/B07BMR4THQ?ref_=fsclp_pl_dp_1

Does this control box work with my Cleva Air Mover (https://www.cleva-uk.com/products/vacmaster-air-mover)?

Is there a way of telling which devices are controllable by such a device?

It probably does. It’s pretty cheap and you can always return it if it doesn’t.

The main thing is to check that the variable speed controller uses a triac (for both safety and performance reasons). The manufacturer of the controller will be able to tell you it’ll it does, or it may be mentioned in the specs for the controller.

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Thank you!

In the safety instructions, I found

“Do not use with a solid state speed control device.”

I guess fluid speed control devices should still work! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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I use a dimmer switch (likely triac based), which is most likely similar to the fan speed controller listed above. I’ve had good luck with that controlling the speed of various fans or electric motors. These are going to work very similarly to other inexpensive motor controllers which are all likely also triac based.
I doubt many fan manufacturers would recommend this type of speed control, but it does work with them.

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:+1:t3:Yep. Most household fans will work fine with a triac speed controller.

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+1 for the Casolly variable speed controller linked above on Amazon. I use it with a basic lasko blower fan, works great, and now I can control the fan from on the bike AND get cooling dialed-in for low/moderate intensity workouts when the house is cooler in winter.

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