I have ordered an electromagnet for a piggyback lift project I'm building. It operates on 12-24 volts dc. Should I buy a cheap 18v dc HO powerpack, or use my AC transformer and a rectifier, and if so, what size?
I had a similar project and used what I had, a 35 amp, 1000v. Definitely overkill but you can buy 5 for $8 and these are rugged. The answer to your question is how much of what you need do you have around such as wire terminals a junction block, fuse, holder, capacitor, etc. If you have to buy it all plus shipping, might be better to buy the ho supply. A lot of folks buy computer charger power supplies, they are a bargain.
So it's about a 300 ohm coil? The question is, does it do the required lifting with 12V applied? That low a current suggests it wouldn't make a very strong magnet. I think you first need to establish how much magnetic force you need and what voltage will get you there.
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