How Do I Convert from a Legacy Drive?

Looking Ahead – How do I convert from a legacy drive?

Drive Modernization for Legacy 1336Plus, 1336PlusII, and Impact drives.

Legacy systems operate in isolation and outdated equipment is costly to run. This blog post will discuss what a legacy drive is and how you can look ahead with regard to your own drives and other automation control systems. The purpose of this post is to help you and your team better prepare for an eventual drives modernization to new products. Specifically, this post will be of great value to you if you are modernizing from 1336Plus, 1336PlusII, and Impact drives.

Legacy Drive Basics

700H AC Drives

Featured Image: PowerFlex® 755 AC Drives from Rockwell Automation

It is important to understand some drive basics first before the drive can be converted from one platform to another. An AC Drive is a programmable power supply, therefore it has a parameter list that it follows to behave a certain way. Without the parameter list the drive will not function correctly. It is important to know these parameters and have them stored for future use upon replacement. Tracking locations of wires is necessary for future success. Also, sometimes it may take more than one person to gather all the important information.

The skill set needed to successfully prepare for Modernization:

  1. A person with an electrical background to document wire location and understands industrial wiring
  2. A person who has a technical aptitude for industrial programming of AC Drives
  3. If the drive is on a network a person who understands legacy networks and PLCs

So how do you prepare for the day (years later) when your legacy drive expires, and the components inside the drive wear out? There could be a few or many parameters that need to be changed in the memory of the drive itself. Also the physical part of the equation comes into play, i.e. how the drive is wired at the terminal blocks of the drive to correlate to the right drive parameters.

Parameter Set (example, legacy drive)

A typical parameter list from the software would look like this:

How do I convert from a legacy drive? Drive Modernization

 

Call To Action – How do I preserve the parameter set?

Your equipment (your drive) has a parameter set. You need to save it and document it somehow. Ideally, you will do this before your drive fails (i.e. blows up, gets zapped, blank screen, etc). Here are three of the most common ways to do so:

  1. Use the HIM on your existing drive and mark the parameters down
  2. Upload the entire parameter set with drive software for that drive platform and save it on a laptop with Drive Executive Software part of the DriveTools SP (suite of products)
    **DriveTools is two parts:
    –Drive Executive – a parameter listing (you’ll need this for a legacy drive)
    –Drive Observer – a short term trending package
  3. Drive Executive can be downloaded off the Rockwell Website

What happens if the parameters are not documented?

  • If the drive has no power to the HIM (keypad) there is no way to retrieve the parameter information
  • Personnel must comprehend the drive behavior and make some critical programming decisions with extensive downtime and stress

The physical part of the plan – the wiring itself:

  • The three phase portion of the drive where all the power comes from for the motor
  • The digital control wiring to start, stop, jog, etc.
  • The analog signals determining commanded speed and possibly speed feedback of the motor to a controller, i.e. a PLC analog input card
  • Possibly a legacy network connection such as Remote I/O with PLC5 or SLC500

What about the Human Interface Module to the Drive?

Since the Human Interface Module (HIM) is different between platforms of the 1336Plus (circa 1995) from the PowerFlex 750 it is impossible to transfer the parameter set between drives. The 1336Plus, 1336PlusII, and Impact drives became obsolete around 2005. These drives all had the same power structure, similar parameter sets, and wiring schemes. The parameter sets were simple, the lists were under 300 parameters and the drives were limited in the functions they could perform. The keypad display was a two line text only with no status icons on the LCD screen.

The advent of the PowerFlex drives increased performance, and the HIM also was enhanced, leaving the older design of the 1336PLUS HIM behind. The form factor (8 pin mini din) of the Port 2 (on the bottom of both drives) has the same connector, the protocol, and the baud rate though are very different. The Scanport protocol on the 1336 Structure is 19,200 k/sec, the DPI protocol on the PowerFlex Drive is 115,200 k/sec baud rate. Port 2 would be used if there is no EtherNet access on the drive. The software cable is a 1203-USB and uses RSLinx software.

How do I get help with all the specifics?

There are some excellent resources to pull information from, Horizon provides Rockwell Engineers that are versed in these migrations. They can assist you with gathering the information prior to drive failure so you are prepared later. Rockwell Engineers will dispatch in an emergency situation, to be a first responder in critical situations that lose valuable production time. Horizon also has Power Product Specialist to help you to get the resources you will need before drive replacement needs to be done.

I have already created a document all about converting 1336 drives to PowerFlex 750 (PF750) drives. You can view that document here. It is a 90+ page PDF, approx 5 MB file size. This white paper covers 1336Plus, 1336PlusII, and Impact drive modernization. It is a detailed document written as a quick start up on the drives, and it refers to the in depth Rockwell documents you will need. There are additional drive modernization topics to be covered, including:

  • 1305 to PF520 Series
  • PF700 to PF753 Series
  • 160SSC to PF520 Series

Check back to this space for more related posts in the near future! In the meantime, should you have any questions about drives or modernization, contact our team today.

What legacy type drives do you use? What modernization issues do you currently face?