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Getting 208 V in the field, how do you do it?

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  • Getting 208 V in the field, how do you do it?

    Hello Miller Welders,

    I am trying to find out what you guys use when you are out of your shop to get 208V when its needed. Do you run it out of an electrical panel? find some control box with 208 V in it or do you have a splitter? I currently use a splitter that takes 2 seperate 120 V circuits and brings it to 1 208 V circuit which works.

    I do have my doubts regarding its safety and usefulness but that's why I thought I would ask here and see what you guys use or how you do it when your not in the convenience of your workshop.
    if there's a welder, there's a way

  • #2
    Depends-

    Engine drive welder, stand alone generator, use existing range or dryer 240v plug.

    FYI- you end up with 240v when you us the 2 legs of 120v single phase power.
    Ed Conley
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    • #3
      Originally posted by Olivero View Post
      I do have my doubts regarding its safety and usefulness but that's why I thought I would ask here and see what you guys use or how you do it when your not in the convenience of your workshop.
      Yeah, a splitter is not real safe. It's much easier and far safer to get 240 AND enough amps than two crappy 120 circuits. They are probably nearly overloaded to begin with and you have a 50/50 shot of picking 2 circuits with opposite legs from the main. Here's a few easy choices in a residential setting:

      Dryer plug
      Electric range plug
      AC unit
      Pool pump
      Hot tub pump
      Straight off the panel box

      Or in a commercial setting there are many many more possibilities available as there might be 3 phase and lots of other of equipment around you can temporarily tap.

      Then there is always a generator which is "wireless"
      Last edited by xryan; 04-27-2016, 12:02 AM.
      Ryan
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      • #4
        True, I have run it out of the control box for a loading dock leveler that was 240, Running an extension cord out of the unit and wrapping it around the box to prevent anyone from tripping and yanking it out. Good ideas though.

        I guess temporarily tapping circuits is the safer and better route.
        if there's a welder, there's a way

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        • #5
          What machine are you running?

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          • #6
            Dynasty 200 SD.
            if there's a welder, there's a way

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            • #7
              I have a range and dryer pigtail made up with my welder plug on the other end when I take my machine to my buddies house. Now if I could go from gas to my welder it would be great. I did have a lady telling me it was easy to do with a converter. Wonder what she was smoking???...Bob
              Bob Wright

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              • #8
                208, is derived from a Y three phase system, or the high leg on a 240 three phase delta system,

                either way, if your wanting three phase or a 220/240 single phase,
                either a generator,
                or a panel if the power is on premises, (if you take from a panel you most likely will want an licensed electrician for safety and liability reasons wire in your receptical to work with).

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                • #9
                  Yeah, I have run it out of a panel before but for a job that I am there for 30 minutes to an hour, it takes longer to get my power set up than doing the actual work.

                  I guess a Generator would be good.
                  if there's a welder, there's a way

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                  • #10
                    208v is 3 phase where I live.
                    That's not easy to find in a residential power system.
                    Why aren't you looking for 220/230v single phase power?
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                    • #11
                      Just remember, "distance is resistance". If you need a long cord, e.g. twenty feet plus, 8 AWG is the way to go. There are electrical supply houses that sell this. Any hardware store sells the male and female plugs.

                      Craigslist has an ENDLESS supply of "poppin' Johnnies" for cheap. Most are designed to give CLEAN power at the plug-ins. Most welders demand clean power. Your hurricane generator from the hardware store may or may not give clean power.

                      Ask any volunteer fireman (or pro). The premier cause of house fires is electrical. Be overly cautious. Some insurance policies have a clause that states that if wiring, modified by an unlicensed person, caused the fire, they won't pay.

                      The advice about the dryer, range, pool, etc tie-in or plug-in is sound. Make that pigtail.

                      Better yet, turn loose of that $200 and have Larry the Electrician put you in a 50A circuit, just for your 220 equipment. Good investment. Keep the receipt.
                      ____________________________________________

                      I don't need to find myself. I'm always at my lathe.

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                      • #12
                        I'm a pro and have been for 15 years. I'd say with all confidence that, in my fire district at least, 50% of our fires are arson...rough part of town ya see...the other half is unintentional with about half of that being electrical in nature. <br />
                        <br />
                        I see a BUNCH of fires caused from people using undersized extension cords. A lot of it is in the summer time with folks running window AC units on 100' of 16 ga extension cord with 85' of it balled up next to the bed, walked on and under a pile of laundry-ish type pile of stuff....

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ryanjones2150 View Post
                          I'm a pro and have been for 15 years. I'd say with all confidence that, in my fire district at least, 50% of our fires are arson...rough part of town ya see...the other half is unintentional with about half of that being electrical in nature. <br />
                          <br />
                          I see a BUNCH of fires caused from people using undersized extension cords. A lot of it is in the summer time with folks running window AC units on 100' of 16 ga extension cord with 85' of it balled up next to the bed, walked on and under a pile of laundry-ish type pile of stuff....
                          Sounds like urban rednecks.

                          Caution around electricity is always a good thing.
                          ____________________________________________

                          I don't need to find myself. I'm always at my lathe.

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                          • #14
                            The problem is not in my shop, in my shop I am fine. But when I am out doing a job in another building, in a loading dock, in a kitchen, etc. Its not always that 208 V is available, plenty of 20 A, 120V circuits but 208 is rarely just a "plug in" kind of deal in these areas, most power supplies for units are mounted disconnects for extra protection.

                            Just last week I had to go to the 5th floor of a building to reinforce a ceiling by welding pieces onto trusses going across so they could rebuild the ceiling with my pieces holding the roof, 5 stories up and all I had there were 120 V 15 or 20 A circuits not a range/dryer/dock leveler or anything requiring 208 V anywhere near me.

                            Luckily I was able to go down in size from 1/8" to 3/32" 7018 rods and run it at 80 A and I managed to make it through without blowing any breakers but if I had used 1/8" sticks, would have had a very frustrating time up there for sure. Those are the kind of situations I am referring to. It was possible to run 208 V out of the nearest power panel but it would add time to the job which was only a few hours, everything being done on the floor, cutting, measuring, beveling, slotting, etc. So for the 20 minutes I was actually welding, it would take longer to run the power to the welder and that's what I was trying to avoid.

                            You can have a dock leveler or a lift in a loading dock, it does not just plug in to the wall, it's got a disconnect, Now i have to repair the lift or weld new dock bumpers on or whatever the case may be, It will take me some time to get power run out of this disconnect box and that's why I was looking for an adapter to just easily tap into 208 without having to mess with any wiring.

                            It sounds like no such adapter exists that will give me a safe way to tap out of 2 120 circuits, so I guess running it whichever way, safely from panels or existing 208 power supplies, whether its a disconnect box or an outlet is the safest way to go and I am totally fine with that, but I just wanted to see if something existed.

                            Thank you all for your replies and if you happen to stumble across one, one day, let me know

                            if there's a welder, there's a way

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                            • #15
                              It sounds like no such adapter exists that will give me a safe way to tap out of 2 120 circuits, so I guess running it whichever way, safely from panels or existing 208 power supplies, whether its a disconnect box or an outlet is the safest way to go and I am totally fine with that, but I just wanted to see if something existed.
                              yes there is a very simple way to do it, but it is not legal or considered proper, and most would consider it unsafe, proceed at your own risk.

                              but if you do not know all ready how to do it, I do not want the libality of telling you as you do not have enough under standing of the electricty or how it is wired, If you did you would have it done all ready,

                              if you still want to do it here is a you tube, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uD6UGa3hh0

                              but again procede at your own risk, and make sure your insurance premiums are payed up,

                              here is a manufactured version of the u tube item, http://www.quick220.com/220_catalog/...e-systems.html

                              Last edited by Farmer Boy; 06-03-2016, 10:55 PM.

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