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  • 3 phase converters

    We are building a 7BBL brew house and we have a quote to bring in 3-phase power at about $16K... So I ask...anyone use 3 phase converters, if so how big is yours?

    We are researching and looks like power companies actually prefer you use them. They are efficient and your utility rate is less.... Looking for any feedback...or thoughts...
    Brew Master/Co-Owner
    Arclight Brewing Company
    Watervliet, MI

  • #2
    My phase converter works great. There are various sizes so the amount of equipment you can run off the unit is not limited. I have 220 single coming in > phase converter > to control panel > out to 2 1hp motors, 2 1/2hp motors (all on VFD's), and a 5kw heating element.

    Good luck

    Lance
    Rebel Malting Co.
    Reno, Nevada USA
    Attached Files

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    • #3
      I faced a similar issue, though I had 3 phase in the building. It was going to be expensive to get it to the other side of our building where the brew house was. I opted for it for the simple fact that it would cost more time and money later to get it done. Remember that your chillers and coldroom will eventually require 3 phase when/if you get big so try to budget for growth now...
      Nate Cornett
      Yellow Springs Brewery
      Yellow Springs, OH

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      • #4
        Phase Converters

        Such units are best suited to " limited " use configurations rather than large across the board loads.
        I have run one of the same brand units shown in the photo on this thread before and the system was not set up correctly from the install.
        This caused outages and damage to some expensive " Milnor " machines.
        Before loads are energized the Phase Master units will output unusually high power on one phase, which by the OEM specs is supposed to be " normal."
        Various types of modern sophisticated equipment however, can and will not care for this " wild " leg ....especially if it runs on board control circuits.
        I had to retrofit one machine drive on the line to single phase because it simply could not tolerate the " dirty " power coming into the on board 3 phase inverter.
        This was a $1000.00 workaround to work around a phase converter.
        It takes a savvy electrician to set one up and also to utilize it without incident across a range of connected loads in many cases. The loads connected will determine the difficulty.
        Real 3 phase power is always better.
        Warren Turner
        Industrial Engineering Technician
        HVACR-Electrical Systems Specialist
        Moab Brewery
        The Thought Police are Attempting to Suppress Free Speech and Sugar coat everything. This is both Cowardice and Treason given to their own kind.

        Comment


        • #5
          Don’t set yourself up to fail.

          You absolutely need three phase power. There is no other option. More importantly, if you are balking at $16k for something so essential, you may want to revisit your funding. You can build a 7 BBL brewery on the cheap for a quarter million, but to do it right and have the resources to keep it running until you turn a profit you are looking at a half to three quarters of a million.

          Trust me on this.

          Jeff

          Selkirk Abbey Brewing Co.
          6180 E Seltice Way
          Post Falls, ID 83854-5052
          www.selkirkabbey.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Selkirk View Post
            Don’t set yourself up to fail.

            You absolutely need three phase power. There is no other option. More importantly, if you are balking at $16k for something so essential, you may want to revisit your funding. You can build a 7 BBL brewery on the cheap for a quarter million, but to do it right and have the resources to keep it running until you turn a profit you are looking at a half to three quarters of a million.

            Trust me on this.

            Jeff

            Selkirk Abbey Brewing Co.
            6180 E Seltice Way
            Post Falls, ID 83854-5052
            www.selkirkabbey.com
            I never said I was balking at the $16k. However when your faced with having to spend money like that it is prudent and good business to explore other options so you can make an informed decision. That is why I was asking the question on here to people who have gone that route and had real feedback about it...

            I have talked to a engineer at Westinghouse and he gave me a lot of great information on 3 phase converters. And like anything, if it is installed properly and operated within its limits it will serve you well.

            Just cause you have money to spend, doesn't mean you have to spend it....that line of thinking is what sets you up to fail...
            Brew Master/Co-Owner
            Arclight Brewing Company
            Watervliet, MI

            Comment


            • #7
              Crimsonwine

              Please forgive me, I didn’t mean to be such an ass. Underfunding is something I’ve been observing among our peers for some time now and its heart breaking. I know several people personally that are struggling unnecessarily and a very kind, decent couple that are going out of business because, like so many people, they underestimated what opening and running a new business will cost. I see it on these boards every day. That said, my tone was inappropriate and I’m sorry.

              I will however maintain my position that having 3 phase power from the power company is a better solution than a converter. Hopefully, at some point, you will have transfers going on while you have water in your HLT and have your keg washer running and bottler running, and walk-in cooler running...

              Regardless, best of luck to you, whatever you decide.

              Jeff

              Selkirk Abbey Brewing Co.
              6180 E Seltice Way
              Post Falls, ID 83854-5052
              www.selkirkabbey.com

              Comment


              • #8
                3 phase power

                We run the same, single phase power but wish it was 3 phase. Since we don't have it and this was one of few places in town zoned to start the brewery we do what we have to do. The power company told me to do 3 phase power I would have to convert the entire complex, not just our unit. over a million bucks. What's one to do get a phase converter?

                First order of business is to understand all of what you want to run. We have a 7 bbl brewhouse steam fired. We run our chiller, keg washer, fork lift charger and pumps on 3 phase. For our pumps we purchased VFDs that convert single to 3 phase electronically so no need for a phase converter, see drives warehouse.com. Works like a charm. Everything else runs off our phase converter. You have to calculate how much load you need to run at anyone time and how hard the start. Our phase converter will run 3x it's horse power rating. The problem is starting the motors. If you have a hard start then you need a larger converter. If you have a soft start i.e. vfd hooked to it then you can ramp up using a soft start to full power.

                What we found on our chiller, forklift charger and keg washer only which 2 are used at any one time is that a 15 horse was large enough. You are limited in single phase to about 7.5-10 hp with single phase 220 v. So a larger air compressor is virtually impossible to run unless you are prepared to spend big bucks on a phase converter or have 3 phase power.

                I think our 15 hp cost about 2500 and we have been able to do almost everything we have needed to do except the large compressor. You just have to use single phase where possible.

                Call Brad at
                Nelson Electric Motor Service
                233 W 3620 S
                South Salt Lake UT 84115
                Tel: 801-262-9530

                He can walk you through and size what you need. Good guy.

                Good luck.




                Originally posted by crimsonwine View Post
                We are building a 7BBL brew house and we have a quote to bring in 3-phase power at about $16K... So I ask...anyone use 3 phase converters, if so how big is yours?

                We are researching and looks like power companies actually prefer you use them. They are efficient and your utility rate is less.... Looking for any feedback...or thoughts...
                Trent
                Shades of Pale
                Park City UT

                Comment

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