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Old 07-24-2013, 01:42 AM   #11
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We run a 50 amp service at around 48 amps for 16 hours straight on brew days. Wire is sized correctly. Haven't had any issues besides popping it once on a hot day
I like your brew days... Succeeding at something doesn't necessarily make it safe--but I would say if it has only tripped once that has to be pretty safe. Are the wires warm to the touch?

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My understanding is that the 80% rule is meant for continuous loads (3 hours continuous). It's likely more conservative than necessary for your situation. Matching the circuit breaker to the the wire gauge to protect the wire is very important.
After a little research I believe you are right right down to the 3 hours... Which is ultimately good--but makes me think my 60 amp rig could have been built as a 50 and saved me a few bucks... Oh well, you rarely regret being too safe... Although it would only be my detached garage that burned down. Furthermore, on a PID the element is likely not on continuously for more than the 45-60 minutes it takes to reach temp. While maintaining the temp the current will be fluctuating continuously.
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Old 07-24-2013, 02:32 AM   #12
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Ok, thanks! Think I am following, one last question regarding divvying up the power (ignoring 100% since i doubt i will need that much additional power). Assuming use of the terminal blocks and I have each of the hot legs pulling a full 20a/240v, does the remaining potential power stay with its pole? Meaning I have 10amps left on each? Does it mess anything up if you pull from only one of the remain poles and not the other? Sorry if these are stupid, just trying to comprehend

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My understanding is that the 80% rule is meant for continuous loads (3 hours continuous). It's likely more conservative than necessary for your situation. Matching the circuit breaker to the the wire gauge to protect the wire is very important.
The electrician I am working with is actually an HBT member and did allude to the fact that for these ebrew applications you can go 100% for short periods of time. I think by code you cant hard wire anything that would surpass that 80% - which makes sense.

Thanks again! I think I will be fine with what I will eventually want to do with 30amps so thats what I will have him install. Now to start saving up the money for the actual stuff - so much more expensive then I was initially thinking haha
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Old 07-24-2013, 02:39 AM   #13
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Run 6 gauge romex to a sub panel with a 50 amp breaker on your main panel. From that sub panel you can run 110 15 amp circuits and one 30 amp 240 circuit. Just remember not to vacumn, do your hair while brewing. Running your own wiring is easy and safe with the right research and know how.

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Old 07-24-2013, 02:40 AM   #14
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Beyond my pay grade.... But it sounds right.... 20 amps at 240 on each hot leg. 10 more amps on leg one plus 10 more amps on leg two would make a total of 30 amps on each hot and only 20 amps on the neutral... Take this with a grain of salt.

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Old 07-24-2013, 02:44 AM   #15
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To anwser your remaining power question. Remaining amps is base on load, not potential. So you could have 3 15 amp circuits, and 3 30 amp circuits on a 50 amp breaker. As long as the actual amp draw on all those circuits does not exceed ~50 amps, the breaker will no trip. Make sense? Open you house breaker box, add up the numbers on the breakers, you will far exceed the 200 amp service that is feeding your house.

Edit: you should not wire this many breakers on a 50 amp sub panel.

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Old 07-24-2013, 02:50 AM   #16
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Beyond my pay grade.... But it sounds right.... 20 amps at 240 on each hot leg. 10 more amps on leg one plus 10 more amps on leg two would make a total of 30 amps on each hot and only 20 amps on the neutral... Take this with a grain of salt.
Your wire gauge needs to be rated at the max amp draw. I do not understand the leg statement. 240 works by +120 and -120 and a neutral. That gives you 240. You could run a 5 watt 240 device and that would only pull .48 amps. If you are pulling a 120 leg off a 240 circuit, you are using one hot leg and a neutral. The wiring still needs to be rated for the max amp potential unless you have a fuse protecting it.

Maybe I am off, I have had a night of drinking and I am no expert.
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Old 07-24-2013, 02:53 AM   #17
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Last answer. A range hood might suffice, but I would recommend at least a 4" fan. The vortex 6" works great.

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Old 07-24-2013, 03:03 AM   #18
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Thanks milldoggy!

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Last answer. A range hood might suffice, but I would recommend at least a 4" fan. The vortex 6" works great.
I had a feeling this would be the case, better safe then moldy

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Run 6 gauge romex to a sub panel with a 50 amp breaker on your main panel. From that sub panel you can run 110 15 amp circuits and one 30 amp 240 circuit. Just remember not to vacumn, do your hair while brewing. Running your own wiring is easy and safe with the right research and know how.
You saying not to run those devices off that sub panel, right? Or in the whole house in general? We know SWMBO will want to vacuum and blow dry the hair while im brewing
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:49 AM   #19
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I was just saying if you run a 50 amp sub panel and you only have 50 amps. Just make sure to not exceed that in the subpanel while brewering.

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Old 07-24-2013, 12:01 PM   #20
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Ok, thanks! Think I am following, one last question regarding divvying up the power (ignoring 100% since i doubt i will need that much additional power). Assuming use of the terminal blocks and I have each of the hot legs pulling a full 20a/240v, does the remaining potential power stay with its pole? Meaning I have 10amps left on each? Does it mess anything up if you pull from only one of the remain poles and not the other? Sorry if these are stupid, just trying to comprehend



The electrician I am working with is actually an HBT member and did allude to the fact that for these ebrew applications you can go 100% for short periods of time. I think by code you cant hard wire anything that would surpass that 80% - which makes sense.

Thanks again! I think I will be fine with what I will eventually want to do with 30amps so thats what I will have him install. Now to start saving up the money for the actual stuff - so much more expensive then I was initially thinking haha
Again, I am no expert, but from doing some research it appears that the 80% rule in the code only applies to continuous loads, continuous defined as drawing current for 3 hours straight. In a brewery application we generally don't have continuous loads. PIDs cycle heating elements on and off, pumps have surge currents then draw less, etc.
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