Brushed motor

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A brushed motor is one that uses brushes and a commutator to switch the direction of current through the coil every 180 degrees of rotation. This prodovides a continuous torque in one direction. Brushed motors will run directly from a DC voltage source, but are usually controlled in models by a brushed ESC.

Brushed motors are relatively cheap to manufacture and were formerly the main type of motor used in model aircraft. However, the efficiency advantage of brushless motors have lead to them becoming increasingly unpopular except for very small RTF aicraft.

Interference is a problem with brushless motors, due to sparks between the brushes and commutator. This can be reduced using suppression capacitors.

The physical contact between commutator and brushes also lead to wear. Brushes eventually wear out, and commutators can be damaged by excessive current due to arcing.

Sizes of brushless motor

The most common designation stems from the length of the motor in tenths of a milimeter.

  • 300 size motor is 30mm long
  • 400 size motor is 40mm long
  • 500 size motor is 50mm long

However, many variants of these basic motors patterns emerged, and the designations applied to them don't necessarily tell you anything about the motor.

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