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3 phase converter update: Running, pic added to thread

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Forum topic by Jerry posted 08-15-2013 12:48 AM 1712 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


08-15-2013 12:48 AM

Well, I had been giving it a lot of thought every since Loren suggested going with a rotary phase converter. So today I pulled the trigger. I bought an old compressor that has a 3 phase 10 hp motor. The motor works fine but the pump was broken. I was able to get the entire compressor with pressure switch, Baldor motor, magnetic switch, tank and pump for 200.00. So not a bad deal.

And then I ordered this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/10-HP-manual-start-ROTARY-PHASE-CONVERTER-CONTROL-PANEL-/300527356835?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item45f8d38ba3

I hope this works great for us. The new to us Quincy compressor came with a huge motor that is 5 hp, 1740 RPM and 3 phase. Physically speaking, the 5 hp 3 phase motor is larger than either of our 7.5 hp single phase motors we have in our shop (one from the Speedaire, other from our Woodmaster planer). So I have decided we are going to run that 3 phase motor on the compressor since that is the original motor Quincy installed.

So this 10 hp phase converter should give us more options. Many auction or old used machines that are good deals are 3 phase. We currently have a nice Delta Unisaw with 52” bies fence and 5 hp 3 phase motor but no way of even using it :( I also have a 3 phase 1 hp power feeder that needs to be used. So we are looking forward to our adventure into 3 phase land.

Thanks for all of the advice from everyone.

I will try to update later next week after we get some 3 phase things going.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net


22 replies so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15090 posts in 2429 days


#1 posted 08-15-2013 01:32 AM

Jerry, that is a static converter. A rotary will be another motor.

Edit: it is a control panel only, you will need a motor to go with it.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#2 posted 08-15-2013 01:34 AM

Yeah, I am adding my own motor to it. I bought a 10 hp 3 phase motor.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15090 posts in 2429 days


#3 posted 08-15-2013 01:36 AM

Have fun with 2 more phases ;-))

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View dahenley's profile

dahenley

127 posts in 847 days


#4 posted 08-15-2013 01:44 AM

Just from what I have read. Rotary phase converters are the way to go!
Down side is that a compressor needs more converter because of start up under a load. The table saw, planer, jointer, Bridgeport and so on start up and free spin and thus isn’t as big of a deal.

You can start a 3phase motor and use the combined motors to run something else.
3hp converter start a 2hp Bridgeport and with both running can start a 5hp jointer and then the 10 combined can continue

That’s my interpretation. Not experience.
They say when your starting something under a load. You need a converter larger then the motor that you are starting.

Maybe someone else can chime in and confirm or deny what I have stated. (My info is from reading and from the practical machinery forums. They had more RPC info)

-- David Henley

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dahenley

127 posts in 847 days


#5 posted 08-15-2013 01:49 AM

I miss read. I was thinking your 10hp RPC was going to power a 10hp compressor motor.

Your all good!
(I should read more then once before posting….)
sorry…. haha

-- David Henley

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#6 posted 08-15-2013 01:50 AM

Yeah, my reading has indicated that starting a compressor needs twice the hp. So I will be starting our 5 hp compressor with the 10 hp rotary converter. It should work like a charm I am thinking.

Dahenley, I updated my compressor thread. Check it out if you want to follow our compressor woes. Good thing is we are getting things operational and are not loosing too much sleep over it.

Good thing about the compressor issue is that when a customer calls/texts “wheres my stuff” I just blame the compressor :) Just kidding.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

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Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#7 posted 08-15-2013 01:51 AM

No problem :)

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

View REO's profile

REO

670 posts in 827 days


#8 posted 08-15-2013 03:52 AM

Compressors are the exception to the rule. For standard loads in most instances 3x the RPC can be run as long as no single load is more than 1 1/2 x the RPC. built my first in 1974. it was 1 hp rpc for a 1 1/2 motor on a lathe.

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#9 posted 08-15-2013 04:17 AM

Thanks REO. Boy 1974 was a few years back.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#10 posted 08-21-2013 12:32 AM

I am so excited. Took some effort but not terribly bad at all. I have our 3 phase converter set up and it runs perfect. I am so so excited!!!!

I bought a 10 hp 3 phase motor off of CL for 200.00. I actually bought a 10 hp compressor, sold as parts with a good motor. The pump was bad but I got the motor, 20’ of #8-3 wire, pressure switch and 60 gallon tank (which we plan to make into our BQ pit). So not bad for 200.00. I got the 10 hp phase converter on Ebay shipped for 220.00.

A few minor parts such as a 3 pole receptacle and a few 3 pole plugs, about 10’ of 6-2/ground and a 50 amp breaker.

I built a small cabinet and installed a solid hard maple top on it for strength. The 10 hp motor is very heavy. I installed the motor, panel and receptacle on the cabinet box.

Got everything up and running this afternoon. I plugged in our 5 hp 3 phase quincy compressor motor and it runs great. I also plugged in our 3 phase 1 hp power feeder and it runs great.

Next phase will be to buy a small 3 phase electric box with maybe 6 slots or so. I want to run just 2 breakers in the box, one for the power feeder and the other for the compressor.

Here is the picture:

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

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Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#11 posted 08-21-2013 12:38 AM

So now for the questions to the big electrician experts.

Both my idler motor and my 3 phase compressor motor only have the 3 hot wires coming out and no ground wire. Everything runs fine on both motors but I am concerned with there not being a ground wire. Can I tap a ground wire into the base of the motor and then ground it on the ground bar in my phase converter panel. The phase converter panel is grounded through the electric box.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

View toolie's profile

toolie

1774 posts in 1382 days


#12 posted 08-21-2013 01:19 AM

if you’ll provide a few more pics of the current set up, following wires coming from the service panel to your “idler” set up and the wiring from each component to the component it’s wired to, i’ll get an electrician from an electrical contractor i’m associated with to review the grounding question.

-- there's a solution to every problem.......you just have to be willing to find it.

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Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#13 posted 08-21-2013 01:34 AM

Toolie, I can do that for you. I will try and get those pics tomorrow. Thanks.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

View Loren's profile

Loren

7827 posts in 2401 days


#14 posted 08-21-2013 01:46 AM

Cool, eh? No fussing with cryptic instructions and programming
VFDs, it’s plug in and go with a rotary unit.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2253 posts in 2300 days


#15 posted 08-21-2013 02:00 AM

Yes you are right Loren. Easy stuff actually. I stayed focused ensuring I did not get shocked. Took my time and got through it in a couple hours.

I don’t have any experience with VFDs so I would not know how troubling that is. Does not sound like I want to mess with it though.

I am totally anxious to get things going now. Very excited to get our new power feeder running. It will only get used a couple times per month but will certainly come in very handy. Before we would share a power feeder between two shapers, not a great thing to do. The shaper the power feeder is attached to wants to walk away when using the power feeder on the neighboring shaper. Plus setting up the power feeder from one shaper to the other is a major pain. Clamping the shapers together helps but is also a pain.

And now our compressor will have it’s own motor back, which means the planer gets its motor back and we are all happy. There is a long story to this one, but our compressor has been using the motor off of our woodmaster planer because is has same specs with 7.5 hp, 1700 RPM, single phase. The motor that was on the compressor is 3 phase. And the motor that we had on our old Speedaire was going bad and thus no good.

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

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