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Old 03-24-2011, 12:36 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Navy_Brewer View Post
I'm putting together pieces for a build now also. I bought the $50 spa pannel from Home Depot (including a GE 30A GFCI breaker) with a plan to use that for GFI protection. Once I priced out buying wire, plugs, etc; it was cheeper to just buy the 30A GFCI cord available on Ebay. Spa pannel was returned.

$50 GFCI pannel
$40 20 Ft 10/3 wire suitable for a power cord (@ $2 a foot)
$20 Dryer cord + Plug

$110 vice $77 for power cord

This leads to a much more portable rig as well.
If 30 amps is all you need, the cord seems to be a great option.
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Old 03-24-2011, 12:49 PM   #22
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Forget 50 amps, go 60 amps so you can run pumps and (2) 5,500W elements at the same time. Oh ya, here is an example of standard outlet. They also come in twist lock.
Attachment 22329
What's more common to have in a house? 240V or 220V If you have 240 I think you could run two 5500W elements and 2 pumps.
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Old 03-24-2011, 01:00 PM   #23
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Officially, our voltage is "240V", but depending on various factors, you can end up deviating from that.

I actually measure 248V at my house.

And it's not the voltage that makes the difference in how many elements you can run. It's the amps available.

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Old 03-24-2011, 01:03 PM   #24
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And it's not the voltage that makes the difference in how many elements you can run. It's the amps available.
Right I understand, but 11000/240=45.8A (suitable for two 5500W elements and a pump or two IMO) where 11000/220=50A (not suitable really for even two 5500W Elements.)
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Old 03-24-2011, 01:12 PM   #25
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You fell into a common mistake.

A 5500W/240V element is only 5500W if you run it at 240V. If you run it on less voltage, it produces less power and draws less current.

If you run it on higher voltage, it produces more power and draws more current.

There is a squaring factor involved, too, so small voltage differences result in huge power differences.

A 5500W/240V element is just a 10.4 Ohm resistor. That resistance is constant. The voltage can vary, so the power will vary.

V=I*R, so I=V/R, so I=220/10.4 = 21.2

That element will only draw 21.2A if run on 220V instead of 240V.

And it will produce only 4600W instead of 5500W.

If you ran that element on 120V, it would only be 1375W (and draw half the current compared to 240V).

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Old 03-24-2011, 01:12 PM   #26
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In the past year of running my 3 keg EHERMS system I rarely run both 5500w elements at the same time. Unless you plan on running both elements together for long periods of time do you really need the 60A over 50A?

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Old 03-24-2011, 01:26 PM   #27
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You fell into a common mistake.
That I did and I'm a bit ashamed. Thank you.
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Old 03-24-2011, 02:36 PM   #28
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I started down the 60amp path and realized exactly what Walker says here. Not only are they harder to locate, the prices go up pretty drastically.
Ed
True, and I should not be so cheeeky about going 60amp - especially since we are in the electrical business so there is the advantage of wholesale, freebies, and write-offs.
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Old 03-24-2011, 02:47 PM   #29
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In the past year of running my 3 keg EHERMS system I rarely run both 5500w elements at the same time. Unless you plan on running both elements together for long periods of time do you really need the 60A over 50A?
5,500W/240 = ~23amps
Two elements = ~46amps
but...
it is considered a continuous load, so
120% 23amps = 27.6amps
Two elements = ~55amps
Then, add in a couple amps for the pumps, lights, and other gizmos and you are approx. 58amps.
Size up to the appropriate breaker, and you get 60amps.

You may be okay with the system at 50amps, but better at 60amps.
More important, is your wire size 6 gage and what distance to the panel?
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:42 PM   #30
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I started down the 60amp path and realized exactly what Walker says here. Not only are they harder to locate, the prices go up pretty drastically. I know Walker got a great deal on cord, but when I priced Cord, Plugs & Receptacles, the difference was significant.

Ed
Try Home Depot,
I just saw this while looking for a 50A
http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1...atalogId=10053
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