Why are there 3 wires on a brushless motor?

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Because there are 3 phases. Unlike a brushed DC motor, it doesn’t have a common ground.

On a BLDC motor the ground “shifts” between a pair of phases during rotation.

You have to remember that these 3 wires can’t be connected directly to a 2 wire battery.

Instead, the battery is connected to the (+) (-) leads on a complex electronic circuit called ESC which commutates the motor. The 3 wires of the motor connect to the output side of the ESC.

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