Three phase generator
Also, I have the opportunity to purchase land on the cheap without dedicated 3 phase lines. I am interested in hearing from someone who has run with a generator and a dedicated service. What are the pitfalls of a standalone generator?
I run a 175 kVa 3 phase generator. It has a Volvo motor and Rockwell gen. I wouldn't go to anything lso. Electrical service here is expensive and unreliable. When I looked into installing 3 phase from the road, it would have cost me $20,000 and I would have had a minimum bill of $600. The lines had to go 5 miles. Also, right now I only run the sawmill, but they also said I would have to sign an agreement that if I added more than three motors, I would start them at half hour intervals (otherwise the whole town would die down). Your situation may be different from mine, since I live in Bliss, population 50 people, 5000 cows.
The biggest pitfall is the added machine to maintain. It costs me about $200 every 6-10 weeks. Sound isn't too much of an issue. I have it in an enclosed trailer body with the exhaust piped out the side and heat vents moving the air. It is 150 feet from the house, and I can come in, shut the door and not hear it. Volvo is a considerably quiet motor, though. Nothing like a detroit.
Also, my mill is on a wood floor. There are railroad ties every 4 feet and 2x8 floor joists every 2 feet crossing the railroad ties. Then I have ash 6/4 flooring. I hate it. I can't wait to get a concrete floor. The mill does a good job supporting a log, but the floor doesn't. You can see on my floor where it has collapsed. I slid a 2.5' I beam, laying on its side, down the center of the mill. Now all my supports are on the I beam, and that disperses the weight better.
I have a 90kva gen set with a detroit. I put it in a box off a truck behind my mill building and at about 100 yards you can hardly hear it. If I had this to do again, I would do it the same way only with a much bigger gen set. They wanted 12,000 to run a line about 300 yards and $500 a month usage and I would have to give a small plot of land for a 3 phase sub station. 12 grand would buy a good gen set and Iím sure it wonít burn $500 in fuel a month. If this land is cheap and buildable and away from everybody, so you don't have complaints, go for it.
My vote would be for the biggest 3 phase generator I could find. Phase converters are okay for smaller operations, but they have to make up a ghost phase to make the motors think they have 3 phase power and are not as powerful as the real thing.
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