ProSoundWeb Community

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 6   Go Down

Author Topic: power for a large mobile production  (Read 17215 times)

Bob Maitland

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13
power for a large mobile production
« on: January 01, 2015, 12:50:23 pm »

I was wondering if someone could help me here.

I have a few friends interested in putting together a mobile production. These shows would be indoor only, primarily from Labor Day to Memorial Day in the upper midwest states.

The minimum electric power needed is 115 amps and that's a conservative estimate, and after scrapping the led screens we intended on using.

I have heard of some bands having trouble even finding 3 20amp circuits to use in some of the venues they performed in.

With the exception of a generator--which couldn't be used due to the winter climate, is there any other realistic options that you can think to come up with more power? I've seen some big regional bands tap into electric panels, but we don't have an electrician on our team, and hiring an electrician to do it, would probably be too expensive.

If anyone has any input or suggestions, it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
Logged

Tim McCulloch

  • SR Forums
  • Hero Member
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 21485
  • Wichita, Kansas USA
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2015, 01:27:26 pm »

I was wondering if someone could help me here.

I have a few friends interested in putting together a mobile production. These shows would be indoor only, primarily from Labor Day to Memorial Day in the upper midwest states.

The minimum electric power needed is 115 amps and that's a conservative estimate, and after scrapping the led screens we intended on using.

I have heard of some bands having trouble even finding 3 20amp circuits to use in some of the venues they performed in.

With the exception of a generator--which couldn't be used due to the winter climate, is there any other realistic options that you can think to come up with more power? I've seen some big regional bands tap into electric panels, but we don't have an electrician on our team, and hiring an electrician to do it, would probably be too expensive.

If anyone has any input or suggestions, it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Bob, you need to go back to your profile page and change the Name field to your real first and last names; real names are required for participation here and you won't get answers to your problems until you fix your displayed name.  If another person with your name has already registered you may use punctuation, spaces, or add your state or zip code (etc) to differentiate yourself.

Otherwise the mods will lock this topic... thanks for your cooperation.

Tim Mc
Logged
"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Mike Sokol

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3361
  • Lead instructor for the No~Shock~Zone
    • No~Shock~Zone Electrical Safety
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2015, 02:54:01 pm »

Bob, you need to go back to your profile page and change the Name field to your real first and last names; real names are required for participation here and you won't get answers to your problems until you fix your displayed name.

Bob, thanks for fixing your screen name. There's a lot of really smart guys and gals on this forum, so be as detailed as you can with your information and I'm sure we can help you.
Logged
Mike Sokol
mike@noshockzone.org
www.NoShockZone.org

Lyle Williams

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1556
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2015, 02:57:44 pm »

If the power isn't there (outlets) you have to bring it with you (generator) or get it installed (electrician).  Otherwise find different venues or moderate your power demands.

How did you come up with the 115 amp requirement?  Have you measured the current draw of your equipment under operating conditions, or just added up the nameplate numbers on the back of gear?
Logged

Tim McCulloch

  • SR Forums
  • Hero Member
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 21485
  • Wichita, Kansas USA
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2015, 03:24:11 pm »

Hi Bob-

Lyle's question is a good one.  If you really need 100+ amperes of 120v/208 or 240v service you already are into the "power tap by electrician" or "big generator" territory and nothing short of a complete redesign of the show is going to change that.  Seriously.

If it turns out that your power draw is more like "I need 5 20 amp 120v circuits" then you're right on the edge.  Finding 5 separate circuits in a school or church or public building that are not sharing a load already will involve lots of long, heavy extension cords that will create problems of their own (voltage drop).

Why can't you use a generator in winter?

Logged
"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Mike Sokol

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3361
  • Lead instructor for the No~Shock~Zone
    • No~Shock~Zone Electrical Safety
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2015, 03:33:30 pm »

How did you come up with the 115 amp requirement?  Have you measured the current draw of your equipment under operating conditions, or just added up the nameplate numbers on the back of gear?

Bob, that's my first question as well. How did you come up with 115 amperes? Do you also need to provide power for lighting or just sound?

You need to know that some power amps will be easier on circuit breakers than others because of power factor, etc... And different music genres have completely different crest factors (peak to average power draws). For instance, a PA system providing a 100 dB SPL room mix for piano and vocalist will draw significantly less amperage than a 100 dB SPL mix with a techno DJ in a rave. Others can chime in here, but your actual amperage requirements will only be known once you set up everything and clamp on a true RMS ammeter. But we can certainly give you an intelligent guess if you post your gear list (especially power amps) as well as music style, room size and SPL requirements.

Many of us have done gigs for so long that we've developed rule-of-thumb WAGs for power that we know should work. If you give us some more details, I'm sure you'll get some intelligent estimates on how much amperage you'll actually need. 
« Last Edit: January 01, 2015, 03:35:39 pm by Mike Sokol »
Logged
Mike Sokol
mike@noshockzone.org
www.NoShockZone.org

Ray Aberle

  • Classic LAB
  • Hero Member
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3433
  • Located in Vancouver, WA (and serves OR-WA-ID-BC)
    • Kelcema Audio
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2015, 04:37:06 pm »

With the exception of a generator--which couldn't be used due to the winter climate, is there any other realistic options that you can think to come up with more power? I've seen some big regional bands tap into electric panels, but we don't have an electrician on our team, and hiring an electrician to do it, would probably be too expensive.

All of what's been said and asked.

Are you carrying your own sound and lighting production, and that's where you've got the 115A requirement from?

About the generator-- if it's because you're envision a bulky construction unit, nah, that's not what you'd want anyways. You can find used MQ Power WhisperWatts in the 45kw to 60kw range for under $15K. If you're already carrying production, this might be a worthwhile investment. Adds another (the tow) vehicle to your crew, though. One of those, a dimmerrack.com distro, maybe 150' to 200' of five wire cam, toss in 20 cable ramps for good measure (a mix of standard and low profiles, so you can handle ADA requirements if you're going across a sidewalk or anything), and you'd be set for under $20k.

Local gennie rentals can be had for a couple hundred bucks or less a day. I'd still want to carry my own feeder and distro, as well as a set of tails. You can get ramps locally as well, but since they can run from $10 to $25 each for a one day thing, and you can buy them for under $200 each-- do the math, based on how often you'd need them.
Logged
Kelcema Audio
Regional - Serving Pacific Northwest (OR, WA, ID, BC)

Bob Maitland

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2015, 08:11:27 am »

Bob, thanks for fixing your screen name. There's a lot of really smart guys and gals on this forum, so be as detailed as you can with your information and I'm sure we can help you.
Thanks for unlocking this and sorry...should have read the rules before. Thanks to everyone for your help!
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 08:28:29 am by Bob Maitland »
Logged

Bob Maitland

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2015, 08:20:55 am »

Hi Bob-

Lyle's question is a good one.  If you really need 100+ amperes of 120v/208 or 240v service you already are into the "power tap by electrician" or "big generator" territory and nothing short of a complete redesign of the show is going to change that.  Seriously.

If it turns out that your power draw is more like "I need 5 20 amp 120v circuits" then you're right on the edge.  Finding 5 separate circuits in a school or church or public building that are not sharing a load already will involve lots of long, heavy extension cords that will create problems of their own (voltage drop).

Why can't you use a generator in winter?
Thanks for your reply.

We would love to pull our own trailer mounted, pure sine wave generator and cost isn't really the issue. The issue is, here in Wisconsin, during the winter months, it's many times in the single digits or worse-below zero. I can't imagine any of the venues allowing us to prop open the doors to run the wiring in.

Does anyone here have any suggestions on how that could be done?
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 08:44:08 am by Bob Maitland »
Logged

Bob Maitland

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13
Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2015, 08:26:44 am »

Bob, that's my first question as well. How did you come up with 115 amperes? Do you also need to provide power for lighting or just sound?

You need to know that some power amps will be easier on circuit breakers than others because of power factor, etc... And different music genres have completely different crest factors (peak to average power draws). For instance, a PA system providing a 100 dB SPL room mix for piano and vocalist will draw significantly less amperage than a 100 dB SPL mix with a techno DJ in a rave. Others can chime in here, but your actual amperage requirements will only be known once you set up everything and clamp on a true RMS ammeter. But we can certainly give you an intelligent guess if you post your gear list (especially power amps) as well as music style, room size and SPL requirements.

Many of us have done gigs for so long that we've developed rule-of-thumb WAGs for power that we know should work. If you give us some more details, I'm sure you'll get some intelligent estimates on how much amperage you'll actually need.
Thanks for your reply

 Everything at this point is a guesstimate, except for the sound, which we were told would need two dedicated 20 amp circuits, with a little wiggle room.

All of the lighting is led, with the exception of some of the moving heads. All of the info we gathered, was based on manufacture specs, based on full power.

Most of the venues would be in large halls, high school gyms, etc.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 08:43:01 am by Bob Maitland »
Logged

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: power for a large mobile production
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2015, 08:26:44 am »


Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 6   Go Up
 



Page created in 0.052 seconds with 22 queries.