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Old March 10, 2009, 05:14 AM
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Default DIY Fan Controller

Hey, I'm interested in making my own fan controller and was looking for a little advice. I have a 92 in the back and an 80 in the front, both of which I plan on wiring up seperate. My question to you all is what I should use to control them. I'm trying to decide between using switches to change them from 12V - 7V - 5V (high, med, low), or a simply just using a rheostat. Can anyone point up any dis/advantages with each? Any suggestions to make this go easier? Thanks in advance!
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Old March 10, 2009, 06:48 AM
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They've both got their good points. Biggest catch is that with a rheo, you need to remember that the rheo is actively dissipating heat, so make sure it's rated for the necessary wattage and has a little air moving over it. The switches are cleaner, and since you tapping directly into the lines, you're not wasting power, although a couple of fans isn't much of an issue either way. Regardless, make sure you use heat shrink over all terminals and connectors, and I'd suggest soldering connections if you have the equipment, just to be certain.

You should also test the fans beforehand at those voltages, just to ensure that 1) they'll start up at those lower voltages, and 2) they don't have any weird behaviours at lower voltages (ticking, grinding, etc).
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Old March 10, 2009, 07:14 AM
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Thanks for the suggestion. I'm leaning towards the switches I think, however I'll probably cut out the 5V idea. Reason 1 is because from what I've been reading alot of fans have problems starting up on 5V and I'd rather not wire up a cap to boot it up. Reason 2 is it cuts the number of 2-way switches I'd need from two to one, although I'd probably still wire up another 1-way as a on/off, which would have been incorporated into two 2-way design anyway (5V connected to 5V = 0V).
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Old March 10, 2009, 02:17 PM
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You could also get a rotary switch and stick a bunch of diodes on it. Very simple to setup and cheap as well as easy to get the parts for too.
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