Unisaw Electrical Requirements

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Forum topic by phk posted 12-05-2011 06:02 AM 6153 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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17 posts in 2645 days

12-05-2011 06:02 AM

Topic tags/keywords: unisaw electrical

I just purchased a relatively new, but used, 3 HP, 230 volt, single phase Delta Unisaw. I need to add a 230 volt circuit for it. I do a lot of electrical work so I’m comfortable with that but I’m not sure what size circuit breaker I’ll need and I can’t find anything about it in the manuals. Does anybody have any advice about that?

-- PHK - Tahoma, CA

6 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5240 posts in 2733 days

#1 posted 12-05-2011 06:54 PM

Mine is currently on a 30 amp, but it ran just fine for years on a 20 amp breaker (in my old shop).
I think you’ll find the plug on it to be a 15 amp plug…..

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View phk's profile


17 posts in 2645 days

#2 posted 12-05-2011 06:55 PM

Thanks for the feedback. I’ve done a little other research and it looks like 20 AMPS is the way to go.

-- PHK - Tahoma, CA

View hairy's profile


2783 posts in 3771 days

#3 posted 12-05-2011 07:14 PM

Read the data plate on the motor. Look for FLA, full load amperes. That’s the maximum load.

My unisaw has a replacement Leeson 4 hp. motor, something like 17.6 FLA, I’d have to go look.

It’s on a 20 amp 220 volt circuit, but I had to put in a 30 amp breaker. It would open the c.b. on startup. It pulls more than 20 amps starting, but it has never opened during operation.

I’ve got all the stuff to run a 30 amp circuit, just gotta do it.

-- My reality check bounced...

View pmayer's profile


1032 posts in 3305 days

#4 posted 12-05-2011 08:24 PM

Mine says 12 amp, and I had it on a 15amp double breaker with 14 ga. wire in my old shop, and now it is on a 20amp with 12 ga. wire.

-- PaulMayer,

View phk's profile


17 posts in 2645 days

#5 posted 12-05-2011 08:38 PM

Thanks all. The plate on the motor says 12.7 Amps. I’m sure 20 Amps , 12 ga., wire is the way to go. (Curiously the factory cord is only 14 ga. and the cord plug is a 220V, 15 Amp plug.)

-- PHK - Tahoma, CA

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2915 days

#6 posted 12-05-2011 10:56 PM

14gauge wire will carry 15 amps. That covers the saw. The startup is the problem. When the motor starts it will draw more than 15 amps in many cases and it might trip the breaker. The fix could be a slow trip breaker or a larger breaker. I would wire NOTHING less than 12 ga wire and 20 amps. The breaker is to cover the wiring in the wall. If a 220V breaker says 20 on it then it is a 20 amp breaker. Many people seem to think you can add the 2 breakers and get 40 amps. Not so. you have 20 amps per leg and it is a 20 amp breaker. If I panned to use a larger breaker I would put in wiring for that many amps. Just the way I am.

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