Posted by: Sarah Prais | July 29, 2014

Introduction to AC Gearmotors and Motors

This blog post is from an updated section of Bodine Electric’s Small Motors Handbook. To download this article as a PDF, please click here.

Although commutator and brush assemblies may be used in some types of alternating current (AC) gearmotors and motors (series-/universal wound), brushless induction-type designs are by far the most common and most reliable for industrial AC motors and gearmotors that operate from an AC power source or from an AC speed control (adjustable speed drive).


In an AC induction motor or gearmotor, the stator winding sets up a magnetic field which reacts with the current-carrying conductors of the rotor to produce rotational torques. The rotor currents are induced in the rotor conductors by the stator’s changing magnetic field, rather than by means of a commutator and brushes. This induction action is the central operating principle of AC induction motors.

AC power is commercially supplied in both single-phase and three-phase forms. The essential operating characteristics of AC induction motors and gearmotors will vary according to:

1) winding types (split-phase, shaded-pole, three-phase, etc.), and

2) the number of phases, the frequency, and the voltage of the power source.

AC Rotor Core


2.2 POLYPHASE MOTORS (Two or Three Phases)

The production of a rotating magnetic field can be simply illustrated by considering a two-phase motor with two embedded stator windings for establishing the magnetic fields. Read More…

Below information is from our latest Application Note on how to connect and reverse our fixed-speed, 3-wire and 4-wire reversible, AC single-phase gearmotors and motors. We conclude our series of AC application notes with four examples of what types of  reversing switches an engineer or technician can use to reverse our stock gearmotors.

How to Wire an Optional Reversing Switch to a 3- or 4-wire AC (PSC) Motor or Gearmotor (115VAC/60Hz Models)

These connection diagrams show how to wire an optional switch to reverse the direction of a 3- or 4-wire Bodine permanent split capacitor (PSC) motor/gearmotor. All the wiring diagrams use variations of a double throw switch, with a center-off position. The purpose of the center-off position is to bring the gearmotor to a complete stop before reversing its direction of rotation. This is necessary to prevent gearing damage. Table 1 (below) shows examples of switch manufacturers, part numbers and specifications recommended for use with Bodine products.

3- Wire-Reversible Bodine AC Motor or Gearmotor

Examples 1 & 2 show how to connect a single- or double-pole switch to our 3-wire, PSC, fixed-speed AC gearmotors or motors.  

Example 1- How to connect the single pole, double throw switch

Example 1- How to connect a single pole, double throw switch


Example 2- Connect the double pole, double throw switch

Example 2- How to connect a double pole, double throw switch

 4-Wire-Reversible Bodine AC Motor or Gearmotor

Examples 3 & 4 show how to connect a three- or four-pole switch to our 4-wire, PSC, fixed-speed AC gearmotors or motors. 

Example 3- Connect the three pole, double throw switch

Example 3- How to connect a three pole, double throw switch


Step 4- How to connect the four pole, double throw switch

Step 4- How to connect the four pole, double throw switch


Switch specification examples and part numbers

Switch specification examples and part numbers

If you have any questions about how to connect our stock products, please give our support team a call at 773-478-3515 (Chicago area), or e-mail us at: All our stock gearmotor and motor connection diagrams are available from our web site.

Copyright Bodine Electric Company © 06/2014. All rights reserved.

Posted by: Edmund Glueck | May 7, 2014

Bodine 2014 Distributor Training Conference a Great Success!

We would like to thank all attendees for joining us at this year’s Distributor Conference in Northeast Iowa. Attendees came from all regions of the U.S. and from as far away as England. Besides the classroom sessions and the hands-on training, this 2-day event concluded with a number of factory tours at our Peosta, IA plant. Bodine’s commitment to producing the highest quality products is proudly demonstrated at every step of the manufacturing process. Hope to see you at our next event.

Bodine Electric Company: Peosta, Iowa - Manufacturing Plant 04/2014Bodine Distributor Conference: Plant Tour 04/2014Bodine Distributor Conference: Plant Tour, DC Armatures 04/2014Bodine Main Mfg Plant, Peosta, IA - Plant Tour 04/2014 Read More…

Bodine type 34B4-WX Brushless DC (EC) Class I Div 2 Gearmotors

Bodine type 34B4-WX Brushless DC (EC) Class I Div 2 Gearmotors

We now offer versions of our 34B4-WX brushless DC (EC) gearmotors that are ETL listed and comply with National Electrical Code Class I, Division 2 safety standards. Designed to reduce the risk of accidental fires or explosions in hazardous locations, these gearmotors can be used safely in environments such as petroleum refineries, dry cleaning plants and spray finishing areas.

The gearmotors feature low-voltage 12/24V DC brushless motors, eliminating the danger of high-voltage arcing and shorts. They are ideal for solar- or battery-powered applications. Upgraded terminal boxes provide additional insulation for electrical connections, and specially coated commutator assemblies further reduce the risk of accidentally igniting flammable materials.

The new 34B4-WX Class I, Division 2 designs provide all the maintenance-free, long lasting performance of a standard Bodine brushless DC gearmotor. Their high starting torque and linear speed-torque characteristics make them ideal for a wide range of variable speed applications. The WX gearhead features all-steel helical gears and synthetic lubricant for quiet operation and long life. These gearmotors offer continuous duty torque ratings of up to 205 lb-in (23 Nm) and standard gear ratios from 4:1 to 312:1. Minimum order quantities and lead times apply for these products.

More information:

Copyright Bodine Electric Company © 04/2014. All rights reserved.

Posted by: Edmund Glueck | March 26, 2014

Bodine Electric Company Receives Workplace Success Award

Bodine Electric was recently awarded the Workplace Success Award from Iowa’s Department of Education for their efforts in supporting numerous training and workforce preparation programs at Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC).

(L-R) Rick Brindle, Plant Manager (Peosta, Iowa plant; Bodine’s main manufacturing facility) and Jeff Bodine, Executive Vice President of Bodine Electric Company.

(L-R) Rick Brindle, Plant Manager (Peosta, Iowa plant; Bodine’s main manufacturing facility) and Jeff Bodine, Executive Vice President of Bodine Electric Company.

Bodine Electric Company collaborated with NICC to develop training and education programs aimed specifically at technical jobs that require more education than a high-school diploma, but less than full college degree. According to the company’s Executive Vice President, Jeff Bodine, there is a significant gap in the educational makeup of the Iowa workforce. “Middle-skill jobs such as CNC machinist and industrial maintenance technician represent 56 percent of Iowa’s employment needs, yet only 33 percent of Iowa’s workers have the skills to fill these critical occupations,” he said during the award ceremony.

Bodine worked closely with NICC to bring this idea to life. The company donated equipment, developed and reviewed curriculum, and along with other local employers worked with the program advisory board to ensure graduates would be well positioned for success after graduation. Currently, the company is working with NICC to expand the curriculum to include a non-credit mechatronics specialist certificate.

Not only are more positions available to these students, but they have the opportunity to choose where they would like to start. Bodine’s program allowed NICC students to shadow current employees, tour the plant itself, and apply for internships immediately after graduation. Bodine also sponsored recent graduates from the NICC program with a hands-on 2-week training program. According to Dubuque’s Telegraph Herald, ninety-three percent of recent program participants found employment since graduation.

Iowa Department of Education Director Brad Buck stated that this training effort highlights Bodine’s long-term commitment to the Peosta/Dubuque area. Instead of ‘switching gears’ and moving their plant elsewhere, “Bodine tackled its worker shortage by partnering with local educational institutions to elevate the entire community.”

Bodine Electric Receives Workplace Success Award

Bodine Electric Receives Workplace Success Award from IDoE (03/06/2014)

Copyright Bodine Electric Company © 03/2014. All rights reserved.

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