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Author Topic: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?  (Read 20404 times)

Neil Sakaitis

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #40 on: January 22, 2016, 07:08:01 pm »

While on the subject of using the distro at home, we are getting into a big reno for the 1st floor, kitchen cabs, ceramic, the whole nine. I need to run new circuits here and there and my current 40 space panel is already full, already using double mini breakers. So part of the reno will be to swap out my 40 space for a 60 space panel. My electrician cousin keeps telling me, rather than opening up the house panel once a year to tap my distro on there, to install a CAM box next to the panel. Since I am doing the reno, I an thinking of finally doing it.

Assuming that I use THNN in conduit from the home panel to the CAM panel, off of a 100A breaker, do you have any suggestions for COMPACT CAM panels I could use. Of course to keep things safe, I would like to have a lock on it so nobody goes inside of it (nobody would but you never know). The CAM panels I see are quite industrial looking and big, but I recall seeing a nice compact rectangular one just wide enough to hold the CAM panel mounts.

Suggestions ??

Sounds like a heckuva Holloween party/haunted house.  And I can well imagine that somewhere out there folks are doing similar things with much scarier home-built contraptions ....
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Cailen Waddell

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #41 on: January 22, 2016, 07:28:22 pm »


Sounds like a heckuva Holloween party/haunted house.  And I can well imagine that somewhere out there folks are doing similar things with much scarier home-built contraptions ....

My group sets up and runs a haunted house for the municipality I work for.  We out through hundreds of people every night, fully lit immersive experience with fog pneumatics, etc.  We use 4 20amp circuits. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Neil Sakaitis

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #42 on: January 22, 2016, 11:02:35 pm »

Cailen,

Nice to see others enjoying the hobby as well. Before I even get into the pneumatics and animatronic side, which is a thread in itself, here is just a short summary of some of the gear I run off of my distro for our home haunt, which attracts over 5000 people (fundraiser for Children's Wish). In all honesty, I have digital ammeters on my feeder lines and on average pull about 70-80 amps total, but that excludes my 60-gallon 2-stage compressor feeding all the pneumatic props. BTW, it is a 2 month setup, running on a custom DMX computer, triggered by 16 industrial photoelectrics.

2 X Martin Atomic 3000's
2 X Martin Magnum 2000's smoke
1 X ADJ Fog Storm 1200
6 X 10W Quad LEDs (used to be PAR56 500w several years ago)
2 X QSC K181 subs (FOH)
2 X QSC K12 tops (FOH)
2 X QSC K10 tops (side fill down the street)
2 X QSC K10 tops (2 props)
8 X Gemini tops (8 props)
1 X Pyle 8 channel amp (8 props)
2 X Epson projectors (window animations)
5 X DMX 4-ch packs (2 circuits props)
14 X PAR38 150w spots (for props)

I think you get the idea, lots of other stuff that probably make up a couple of other circuits, but there is a LOT of juice being pulled here, on a lot of circuits, hence the distro :-)

Neil




My group sets up and runs a haunted house for the municipality I work for.  We out through hundreds of people every night, fully lit immersive experience with fog pneumatics, etc.  We use 4 20amp circuits. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Mark Cadwallader

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #43 on: January 22, 2016, 11:07:32 pm »

I see no point in using series 15 cams (150A) at home when your distro and existing feeder uses series 16 (400A) cams. I suspect that it likely be cheaper, neater, and easier to have a smaller panel box made than to mess around with adapters or a special set of feeders that are series 15 on one end and series 16 on the other. If you buy a stand-alone breakered disconnect (from Motion Labs or somebody else), it will no doubt come with series 16 cams, too.
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Neil Sakaitis

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #44 on: January 22, 2016, 11:12:00 pm »

Jumping back on topic for doing a main breaker on my distro, as I mentioned, and as per previous pics in this post, I have a 5U panel housing the CAMS, 8 Edison outlets (16 circuits) and 8 mini breakers, and another 2U panel housing 8 more breakers, leaving me with 1.5U left blank in my case, probably not enough to get a main breaker in there, especially if I will be using that dead space underneath to now mount my power distro blocks to feed the CAMS to the breakers to improve the design.

What if I was to get rid of my 2U 8 breaker panel, and replace it with a 2U 20 breaker panel, like the one sold by PSS (ampshop).
http://www.ampshop.com/parts.html

Their panel would allow me to maintain my 16 breaker setup, and leaves me with 4 free spaces. From a code and setup point of view, could I use 2 of those spots to slap a 100A double pole main breaker in there ? Does it matter that the main breaker is in line with the circuits physically? Technically it should not matter.

My only technical challenge is that their breaker panel is made for QOU breakers, and I believe those only go up to 60A. Would have to figure out a way to mount a double pole 100A within that same cutout. I guess I could talk with those guys to see if they could even mount it for me (custom cutout), sell me the panel setup already with the breakers on it.

Thoughts on this ??
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Neil Sakaitis

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #45 on: January 22, 2016, 11:21:43 pm »

Curious Mark, why would it matter ?? If I have series 16 cams on my distro, fed by a #2 SC into a breaker in my home panel (or pretend it was fed into a series 16 cam panel tied by solid copper into my home panel for argument sakes for code). To me, the series 16 allow me to go up to 400A (feeder permitting), but is simply overkill for only using less than 100A, perhaps justifying your comment for the series 15 CAMS.

BUT, I would like to be able to do exactly what I mentioned in my previous replies, carry my distro to a hall, and setup a club worth of gear and use the venue's 3-phase panel and tie into it. This way I can max out the #2 SC feeder capacity of 190A (in a perfect environment), or whatever main breaker I end up adding that is close or under the capacity of the feeder.

The series 15 CAMS would limit me even further, so would prefer having the series 16 for the occasional gig that requires a little more juice.

But agree, way overkill for my home haunt application.

I see no point in using series 15 cams (150A) at home when your distro and existing feeder uses series 16 (400A) cams. I suspect that it likely be cheaper, neater, and easier to have a smaller panel box made than to mess around with adapters or a special set of feeders that are series 15 on one end and series 16 on the other. If you buy a stand-alone breakered disconnect (from Motion Labs or somebody else), it will no doubt come with series 16 cams, too.
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Mark Cadwallader

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #46 on: January 22, 2016, 11:29:00 pm »

You have 3U (or 3.5U) to work with, so a custom panel might do it for you. Whether that (and all of the additional rework/new parts) is cost-effective is your call, however.  Ampshop does not build UL/ETA listed devices (to the best of my knowledge), even if they use listed components. Given that you are running a commercial (albeit not-for-profit) attraction, you might want to factor that in to your decision. YMMV.
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #47 on: January 22, 2016, 11:41:27 pm »

No one has addressed your question on breaker size.  For installs, with a feeder ampacity of 190 amps (I am assuming you have that correct-more to consider than just the wire rating out of a chart), it is acceptable to use a 200 amp breaker.  The NEC lists standard breaker sizes, and under 800 amps it is permissible to round up to the next larger size.

Permissible does not necessarily mean smart; however, the trip time between a slight overload on a 190 vs a 200 will not be much-and likely your peaks would start tripping the 200 if you got to close with your continuous load.  If you were pulling 195 amps on resistive heating that might be different-but those types of scenarios require othe considerations and derating.
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Steve Swaffer

Neil Sakaitis

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #48 on: January 22, 2016, 11:52:26 pm »

Thanks Steve for answering this last part of the puzzle for me. I was just brainstorming this very subject with a technical buddy of mine, and while he suggested a 200A main breaker should be fine, for the small difference per leg, he was not sure 100% and neither was I. Did not know that part of the code that allowed rounding up for small differences. That is good to know, but again, I am not stupid here, even if I slap a 100A double pole main, I will always try to remain below the capacity of the feeder, even if it is only a 10A drop on a good day.

Now I just have to figure how to get a double pole 100A onto the same panel with 16 QOU breakers.

Maybe one of you know this already. The SqD breakers I have right now, some say Series 2 others say Series 3. I assume they are part of the same QO family. The Ampshop panel says their panel is for QOU breakers, would I be able to reuse my existing Series 2 and 3 breakers in that panel ?? Hoping yes to save some coin and just transfer over what I already have.

The way my current panel is made, they used 2 long screws and a back mounting bar to group 3 breakers together, to hold it up to the panel it is mounted on. Will be curious to see how ampshop keeps 20 breakers mounted to the panel, hoping it is not just 1 long metal bar across all of them. Only reason I ask is to see if I can reuse mine and how they would mount due to the different Series design, and how that would mate with the remaining breakers ampshop would provide for me on that panel.

Thanks

No one has addressed your question on breaker size.  For installs, with a feeder ampacity of 190 amps (I am assuming you have that correct-more to consider than just the wire rating out of a chart), it is acceptable to use a 200 amp breaker.  The NEC lists standard breaker sizes, and under 800 amps it is permissible to round up to the next larger size.

Permissible does not necessarily mean smart; however, the trip time between a slight overload on a 190 vs a 200 will not be much-and likely your peaks would start tripping the 200 if you got to close with your continuous load.  If you were pulling 195 amps on resistive heating that might be different-but those types of scenarios require othe considerations and derating.
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Mark Cadwallader

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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #49 on: January 22, 2016, 11:54:48 pm »

Yes, series 16 is overkill at your home, but not for some future 200A usage. You mentioned using series 15 at home (for a smaller box on the wall in your basement). While having non-standard hybrid 15/16 adapter feeder made for home use would be fine, you could never use them to connect (as an extension) with your existing 16 series tails (which you use away from home).  I personally would go with the series 16 to standarize my gear and increase the inter-operability of my stuff. 
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Re: (How) Can I connect my single-phase distro to a three-phase tie in?
« Reply #49 on: January 22, 2016, 11:54:48 pm »


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