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Old 12-01-2011, 09:46 PM   #1
rcooper44537
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Dec 2010
London, Ontario
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In P-J's diagrams he always uses a contactor along with an SSR to switch the heaters. Can someone give me a detailed explanation of why you need the contactor? Just a little confused is all,

Thanks guys,

Russ



 
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Old 12-01-2011, 09:54 PM   #2
voltin
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The contactors are used to "physically" disconnect the element from the control panel wiring. This allows for you to keep the PID on (to monitor temperature for example) while turning off the element.



 
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:00 PM   #3
birvine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voltin View Post
The contactors are used to "physically" disconnect the element from the control panel wiring. This allows for you to keep the PID on (to monitor temperature for example) while turning off the element.
Safety and more flexibility then? So, it would also be a good idea for a 120v element BK. ie independent of element size?

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Old 12-01-2011, 10:03 PM   #4
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I am not sure what P-J is using them for, but typically a contactor is a good idea because if a contactor fails, it will fail into an open position (no current flowing through), whereas a SSR will fail closed. It is for safety.

 
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:06 PM   #5
shortyjacobs
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SSRs leak current, so with the SSR "off", there's still a bit of juice going to the element.

More importantly, if you fire your element with the kettle dry, you'll blow it. Most of us like the extra security of a physical disconnect controlled by a switch we can manipulate, to be SURE we only fire the element when we want to. On my setup, I'll have contactors controlling power to both the 120V RIMS and 240V BK element, plus a contactor to control main power to the panel. Feels better having complete, physical control of current flow.
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:09 PM   #6
voltin
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Yep, what shortyjacobs said. On my single vessel panel, I have a contractor for both the main and element power.

 
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:11 PM   #7
birvine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voltin View Post
Yep, what shortyjacobs said. On my single vessel panel, I have a contractor for both the main and element power.
I'm convinced.

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Old 12-01-2011, 10:50 PM   #8
rcooper44537
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Thanks guys that clears that up for me. and cochrane ontario? where do you order parts / brewing supplies?

 
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Old 12-02-2011, 01:50 PM   #9
birvine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcooper44537 View Post
Thanks guys that clears that up for me. and cochrane ontario? where do you order parts / brewing supplies?
Interesting for me being where I am.

In terms of brewing supplies I either get them when I pass through North Bay (the brew-on-premises there has been amazing) and when I am in TO or nearby. In August I was in London and zipped over to BrewHaven for a few extra supplies.

The e-brewing will be a little trickier. Online ordering I suppose.

Brent


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