Control Products Dual Relay $60 Shipped on Amazon
Long-time lurker here. I've finally made the plunge into a dual-stage temperature controller and figured I'd pass on what looks like a good deal:
The manufacturer sells them for almost twice this amount:
My only problem is I have no idea how to wire it, if I is unwired (I couldn't figure this out from the Amazon ad). Oh well, half the fun of this hobby is tinkering right? :)
Anyone have advice on how to wire it, or reviews on how well it works? I searched the forums and could only find a vague reference to their products being pretty good.
Thanks in advance! :mug:
The wiring instructions are on the first page of the manual (http://www.controlproductsonline.com/9102-series-temperature-controllers-p-103-l-en.html)
Basically wire power to the correct terminals (common and either 120 VAC or 240VAC depending on what you have)
Then wire the live wire of your controlled device through the stage 1 (or stage 2 depending on which "stage" you want to control the device) relay terminals (wire it as you would a manual switch to turn what ever it is off or on)
What are you using this to control? HLT?
First, thanks for the reply and the link :mug:
I'm hoping to wire it to turn my keezer on/off and keep a 5 gal fermenter at the right temp for lagering. I know (think?) what I'm describing only requires a single-stage controller, but for the price I thought it couldn't hurt to have the flexibility down the road.
For the past few months I've been controlling the keezer with a $10 programmable daily timer--which turned out to be a great, cheap alternative--but this seemed like a good deal and I can finally give lagering a shot during this hot Summer.
Well, I bought one of these. I'm not a complete electrical newbie. I've wired my dark room, my bathroom, my kitchen. I've assembled computers, so I thought I'd be able to handle wiring this thing.
[Sigh] Note to self: just buy a pre-wired next time. After going to HD and buying the cord, plugs, connectors and junction box (see below) needed to finish the job, I don't think I saved any money over the pre-wired units.
This thing has 30 amp relays and I was going to be powering my fridge and a small heater to stick inside the fridge to control fermentation temps. So I went with 14 gauge wire. 12 would have been better, but oh well. There's 3 sets of connection points inside - 1 for the power in (either 120 or 240 volt) and then there's 2 sets of 2-wire non-polarized connectors for the dual stages. Problem #1: the connectors are really difficult to connect to. They don't play nice with braided copper wire, even if you do tin the leads. And there was no way I was getting three sets of 14 gauge wire through one 1/2" knockout hole, so I had to attach a junction box onto the thing and run solid copper wires to the inside of the controller and then inside the junction box I could make my connections to the actual cords. And it seemed like the connectors easily torqued on the circuit board when you tried to screw down the connector, so you had to hold the connector block to make sure that the block didn't torque on you when you screwed it down. Fun. I used a continuity tester to verify that I had the right wires going to the right plugs and no wires were shorting any of the other wires inside the plugs, since the wires have to be so scrunched up in the plug ends.
So then, after ALL THAT WORK, I plug in the thing and...it didn't work right. The controls were seeming to do what they were supposed to do, and it sounded like the relays were turning on when they were supposed to, but there was no power going to the fridge or to the heater. I tested the lines with an outlet tester and it verified that no power was getting to either of the stage outlets. God damn it. There's jumpers inside, but the instructions don't tell you anything about them.
So now I'm off to the LHBS to pick up a pre-wired dual stage controller, because I'm supposed to be lagering a batch of beer tomorrow with my friend and we have no fermentation chamber yet. Hopefully I'll get this thing worked out later, but right now I'm out of time and I'm really frustrated with this thing. I hope it works right later. It seems like a good unit, and it's actually made in the USA (MN).
Oh god, I had really hoped not to read something like this...I have minimal wiring experience so this is going to be a nightmare for me :(
Thanks for the tips though and I hope you get it running. I've been putting mine off for a while because I hoped to read someone's "look how easy this is" email, but maybe it's going to be a while before I see one of those. UGH.
I just opened mine and uggg, not going to be easy. Wiring diagram is crap and ports are all so small...
Tip: Pigtail everything
Use a small ground wire.
I pigtailed off the common, 120, and both posts of relay one. Turned off stage 2 since I wont be heating.
Works good. Lots of menu options, read through that.
Yeah, I went to their website and they have a wiring diagram that makes more sense than the one that came with the unit. I'm going to try that this weekend and see if I can get it working right. I'll take pics and post them as I work. But you'll only see the pics if it works. :)
It actually is really simple if you use a 2 inch pigtail wire off everything you need then just wirenut them to your cords. Bending them back into the box was the tricky part heh.
Mines holding a nucool fridge at 41 degrees as we speak. Ran well overnight. Pretty darn impressive dual stage controllers. You can set like 30 things on it.
Like C or F
both stages can heat or cool, or one of each, or off
cycle times so you dont burn a compressor
safety limits for heat/cool no overlaps
Shows you what stage is on also, I like that.
I didn't touch a jumper FYI.
I did ground over to the circuit board that has the sensor on it. Just used a small wire from a PC fan.
Okay, I got it working. Here's what I did:
BTW, I'm writing this for electrical newbs / beginners like myself. Any professional electricians out there, feel free to point out where I screwed up.
Some people call them receptacles. I call them outlets. That thing in the wall with the slots that you plug things into? I call those things outlets.
Get the following materials:
* (1) 4" x 4" square electrical outlet box with 1/2" knockouts
* (1) pretty big wire nut (big enough to connect 4 12-gauge wires together)
* (1) "mud ring" - a metal plate that connects the single outlet to the box
* (1) cheap outlet cover - single outlet
* (1) 15 amp outlet
* (1) 2" piece of 1/2" conduit
* (2) connectors to connect the conduit to the boxes
* (1) 8' long piece of 12 or 14 gauge cable (3 wires inside the cable)
* (1) 3-prong plug to turn the 8' long cable into a corded plug
* (1) connector to connect the cable to the outlet box
* About 24" worth of 12 gauge wire, white insulation, solid wire (not standed) - this is to make (3) 8" long pieces of white wire
* About 24" worth of 12 gauge wire, black insulation, solid wire (not stranded) - this is to make (3) 8" long pieces of black wire
* screwdrivers (flat and Philips)
* wire cutter / stripper
* needle nose pliers
* electrical tape
* outlet tester (optional)
* continuity tester (optional)
[Please go to post #34 in this thread to see how I eventually wired it all up correctly with pics and a diagram and everything]
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