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Sutronics controller - Light Surge

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  • harisaki2004
    Hi Distillers, do we have an electrician amongst us? I installed a Sutronics controller last week running a 3000W element in a 50L keg. Runs well and controls
    Message 1 of 7 , Nov 2, 2013
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      Hi Distillers, do we have an electrician amongst us?


      I installed a Sutronics controller last week running a 3000W element in a 50L keg. Runs well and controls the system as many others have told us.
      However all the lights on the same phase in the house pulse when the controller pulses.

      As  I have a  35A 3 phase system, does that mean I need to change the phase on the still or is there some other issue I need to consider??

      regards Hari.
    • Eddie Hoskin
      Question: Do the lights dim, and stay dim, or do they pulse, or do they flick dim once and then brighten back up?  The answer would tell what your problem is
      Message 2 of 7 , Nov 2, 2013
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        Question:

        Do the lights dim, and stay dim, or do they pulse, or do they flick dim once and then brighten back up? The answer would tell what your problem is :).

        RadicalEd

        Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android



        From: ledaswan@... <ledaswan@...>;
        To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>;
        Subject: [Distillers] Sutronics controller - Light Surge
        Sent: Sat, Nov 2, 2013 11:17:10 AM

         

        Hi Distillers, do we have an electrician amongst us?


        I installed a Sutronics controller last week running a 3000W element in a 50L keg. Runs well and controls the system as many others have told us.
        However all the lights on the same phase in the house pulse when the controller pulses.

        As  I have a  35A 3 phase system, does that mean I need to change the phase on the still or is there some other issue I need to consider??

        regards Hari.
      • harisaki2004
        Hi Eddie, the lights pulse in time with the pulsing of the controller. You may know that the controller turns on full power for certain time and remains off
        Message 3 of 7 , Nov 2, 2013
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          Hi Eddie, the lights pulse in time with the pulsing of the controller.  You may know that the controller turns on full power for  certain time and remains off for an allowed time, usually 0.5s. Obviously the 15A draw drops the line voltage enough to effect the lights.

          Hari.



          ---In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, <distillers@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

          Question:

          Do the lights dim, and stay dim, or do they pulse, or do they flick dim once and then brighten back up? The answer would tell what your problem is :).

          RadicalEd

          Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android



          From: ledaswan@... <ledaswan@...>;
          To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>;
          Subject: [Distillers] Sutronics controller - Light Surge
          Sent: Sat, Nov 2, 2013 11:17:10 AM

           

          Hi Distillers, do we have an electrician amongst us?


          I installed a Sutronics controller last week running a 3000W element in a 50L keg. Runs well and controls the system as many others have told us.
          However all the lights on the same phase in the house pulse when the controller pulses.

          As  I have a  35A 3 phase system, does that mean I need to change the phase on the still or is there some other issue I need to consider??

          regards Hari.
        • Eddie Hoskin
          I am not terribly familiar with the particular model of the controller, which is why I asked :p. Unfortunately, there isn t a real good solution for you.  The
          Message 4 of 7 , Nov 2, 2013
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            I am not terribly familiar with the particular model of the controller, which is why I asked :p.

            Unfortunately, there isn't a real good solution for you. The load is large enough that it's causing substantial voltage droop when it kicks on. Solutions available include:

            1. Use a different controller that does not cycle the full load at low frequencies. Filtered PWM control via an SSR, for instance, may provide considerably less voltage droop, as it will act like an averaged load, reducing the perceived loading on the cables.

            2. Upgrade your service. With bigger wires you will have less voltage droop and thus less dimming.

            3. Change your load to 3 phase, either by use a 3 phase heating element or using a 3 phase to 1 phase transformed, thereby reducing the load on each phase considerably, and also reducing the perceived voltage droop on the lines (inherent benefit of 3 phase).

            Option 2 would be the 'best' but by far the most expensive. Option 1 is likely much cheaper. Option 3 likely isn't all that feasible unless you get real resourceful.

            Hope that helps,
            RadicalEd

            Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android



            From: ledaswan@... <ledaswan@...>;
            To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>;
            Subject: RE: Re: [Distillers] Sutronics controller - Light Surge
            Sent: Sat, Nov 2, 2013 1:33:55 PM

             

            Hi Eddie, the lights pulse in time with the pulsing of the controller.  You may know that the controller turns on full power for  certain time and remains off for an allowed time, usually 0.5s. Obviously the 15A draw drops the line voltage enough to effect the lights.

            Hari.



            ---In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, <distillers@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

            Question:

            Do the lights dim, and stay dim, or do they pulse, or do they flick dim once and then brighten back up? The answer would tell what your problem is :).

            RadicalEd

            Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android



            From: ledaswan@... <ledaswan@...>;
            To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>;
            Subject: [Distillers] Sutronics controller - Light Surge
            Sent: Sat, Nov 2, 2013 11:17:10 AM

             

            Hi Distillers, do we have an electrician amongst us?


            I installed a Sutronics controller last week running a 3000W element in a 50L keg. Runs well and controls the system as many others have told us.
            However all the lights on the same phase in the house pulse when the controller pulses.

            As  I have a  35A 3 phase system, does that mean I need to change the phase on the still or is there some other issue I need to consider??

            regards Hari.
          • Paul
            3000W at 230V is only 13A, it should not be enough to cause a voltage drop, and dimming lights, especially as lighting and power circuits are wired separately
            Message 5 of 7 , Nov 2, 2013
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              3000W at 230V is only 13A, it should not be enough to cause a voltage drop, and dimming lights, especially as lighting and power circuits are wired separately from the switchboard. Are you at the end of a long country road and suffering from supply deficiencies? Is your 3-phase supply 3 legs at 35A? or 12A per leg? I would be measuring voltages at the switchboard, the controller, and the lights while the controller (and element) are both on and off to find out where the voltage drop is happening. Measure in reference to both switchboard neutral, and directly across the devices themselves. To me, it seems you either have a loose connection somewhere which is showing up when the system is under more stress (drawing higher amps), or there is a wiring error that somehow puts the controller in series with the lights (voltage divider). A clamp meter to measure current would be of benefit too. If you are inexperienced with electrical matters you are best to seek advice from someone who is experienced.

              Best to sort this out, if there is wiring error or poor connection you can either kill yourself, or burn the house down.

              Paul

            • Eddie Hoskin
              The controller would not be in series with the lights, or the lights would turn off whent he controller did :) but an interesting point about a loose
              Message 6 of 7 , Nov 3, 2013
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                The controller would not be in series with the lights, or the lights would turn off whent he controller did :)

                but an interesting point about a loose connection...it is possible that a loose connection would could make this happen.  Not by drawing more amps, but by reducing volts.  I don't think that it's likely the issue, but if it is, it is a severe fire hazard.  Check the mains lugs at the panel to see if they look loose...but do not touch them!!!!

                RadicalEd



                From: Paul <sudokuhater-b@...>
                To: "Distillers@yahoogroups.com" <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Saturday, November 2, 2013 3:50 PM
                Subject: Re: Re: [Distillers] Sutronics controller - Light Surge

                 

                3000W at 230V is only 13A, it should not be enough to cause a voltage drop, and dimming lights, especially as lighting and power circuits are wired separately from the switchboard. Are you at the end of a long country road and suffering from supply deficiencies? Is your 3-phase supply 3 legs at 35A? or 12A per leg? I would be measuring voltages at the switchboard, the controller, and the lights while the controller (and element) are both on and off to find out where the voltage drop is happening. Measure in reference to both switchboard neutral, and directly across the devices themselves. To me, it seems you either have a loose connection somewhere which is showing up when the system is under more stress (drawing higher amps), or there is a wiring error that somehow puts the controller in series with the lights (voltage divider). A clamp meter to measure current would be of benefit too. If you are inexperienced with electrical matters you are best to seek advice from someone who is experienced.

                Best to sort this out, if there is wiring error or poor connection you can either kill yourself, or burn the house down.

                Paul



              • harisaki2004
                Thanks Eddie and Paul, I think I may call the power authority and / or the local electrician to check this out. Some years ago I got my electrician to check
                Message 7 of 7 , Nov 5, 2013
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                  Thanks Eddie and Paul, I think I may call the power authority and / or the local electrician to check this out.


                  Some years ago I got my electrician to check all the contacts in the board as the lights would dim when the oven was turned on. They found nothing. Having said that when the solar panels (4.5 kW) are running the light flicker seems to be non existent, this may be pointing to the line supply.  Fingers crossed we can get to the bottom of this. 

                  Thanks again

                  Hari.



                  ---In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, <eddie_hoskin@...> wrote:

                  The controller would not be in series with the lights, or the lights would turn off whent he controller did :)

                  but an interesting point about a loose connection...it is possible that a loose connection would could make this happen.  Not by drawing more amps, but by reducing volts.  I don't think that it's likely the issue, but if it is, it is a severe fire hazard.  Check the mains lugs at the panel to see if they look loose...but do not touch them!!!!

                  RadicalEd



                  From: Paul <sudokuhater-b@...>
                  To: "Distillers@yahoogroups.com" <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>
                  Sent: Saturday, November 2, 2013 3:50 PM
                  Subject: Re: Re: [Distillers] Sutronics controller - Light Surge

                   

                  3000W at 230V is only 13A, it should not be enough to cause a voltage drop, and dimming lights, especially as lighting and power circuits are wired separately from the switchboard. Are you at the end of a long country road and suffering from supply deficiencies? Is your 3-phase supply 3 legs at 35A? or 12A per leg? I would be measuring voltages at the switchboard, the controller, and the lights while the controller (and element) are both on and off to find out where the voltage drop is happening. Measure in reference to both switchboard neutral, and directly across the devices themselves. To me, it seems you either have a loose connection somewhere which is showing up when the system is under more stress (drawing higher amps), or there is a wiring error that somehow puts the controller in series with the lights (voltage divider). A clamp meter to measure current would be of benefit too. If you are inexperienced with electrical matters you are best to seek advice from someone who is experienced.

                  Best to sort this out, if there is wiring error or poor connection you can either kill yourself, or burn the house down.

                  Paul



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