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ronfire

Convert From A Sitter.

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Looking for some information as to wire size to feed the elements. I am thinking of installing a Genesis controller instead of the Sitter on my Skutt 1027. It requires 48 amps 240 volt single phase.  So 12 gauge wire should be lots to wire up each  of the 6 elements if I am correct.

I am planning on running with 3 zones as the cost is almost the same except for 2 additional thermocouplers.

Was thinking of 8g thermocouplers in  Mullite Protection tubes.

Any suggestions would be greatly welcome.

Thanks

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I can say that the coating on that wire from the elements is high temp and that #12 is for 20 amp maximum . Others with more details will chime in I'm sure.

Good luck with this job. Sound very intresting  for many thinking about this. Let us know the end results.

Mark

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When in doubt, just buy the factory harness kit. While it will cost more than if you fabbed it up yourself, you'll get everything you need in the right size and length.

 

 

KM Harness Wire Set - KM1227/KM1027/KM1222/KM1022/KM1022-3/KM822/KM822-3 1 Phase (Specify if for Zone Control) 2560 $32.00

 

 

What's $32 for a little piece of mind and not burning your studio down? :lol:

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Ho do you plan to mount the controller and protect it from the heat? If I were you, I would build an external control box that you can just plug the kiln into. Much less wiring, much less work, better for the electronics. 8ga thermocouples in tubes is a great way to go.

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ummmm, ronfire says he wants to convert his manual kiln (see his reference to a kiln sitter) to electronic control. There is no factory wiring harness for this. It is a significant project, though not the end of the world. I recently did this with my old manual L&L Jupiter.

 

Some considerations:

 

The controller is not a simple swap-in for the sitter mechanism; there are many additional parts required. The controller is powered by a center-tapped 24V 2-sided transformer, which requires a switch and fuse. Each zone requires a relay of appropriate rating for the section(s) it will control. If running as a single zone, the relay must support 60A switching. If running 3 zones, each relay controls only 20A. And then there are all the wires and connectors and power distribution blocks, plus the additional special wiring for the thermocouples. All this needs to fit inside a heat-resistant (i.e., metal) vented enclosure. The hole where the kiln sitter used to be is not adequate. I was lucky, I found a suitably large vented box and then drilled all the holes I needed to install the guts. You can buy a replacement control box from Skutt that fits onto your existing case, but now we are replacing lots of ingenuity and hard work with lots of $$$. Your choice.

 

As for a direct answer to your initial question, yes 12ga wire is what you need. Each section will pull 16A nominal, but needs to be wired at 125% of nominal rating, so 20A = 12ga. However, you need to use special high-temp wire with the heat-resistant jacket, and high-temp crimp connectors. Depending on how your wiring layout is designed, you may need both ring connectors and push-on connectors. I got mine from Amazon. I also picked up the transformer from Amazon, but you need to know exactly what to look for as there are a slew of different transformers offered. You will also need some low voltage wires for the control circuits, in at least 2 colors (green for the grounding, whatever for the power, and some would use a different color for each zone just to keep everything straight). The thermocouples will require the special red-yellow wire (for K-type, the S-type will cost you a bundle) and then you have the relays. I got both the thermocouple wire and relays from McMaster Carr. You can also pick up L&L/Skutt relays from some of the usual online pottery suspects.

 

Finally, you will need to think through how the elements themselves will be connected. The Skutt manual Hi/Med/Lo switches operate by turning only one element in each section on for Lo, both elements in series for Med, and both elements in parallel for Hi.

You will need to design and build your power circuits from the relays to the elements so they are running parallel as if the manual switch is on Hi.

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Thanks Dick for the input.

I have found most of the parts from Digikey. Crossed the parts with ones the pottery shops sell.

I was going to use this     https://www.digikey.ca/product-detail/en/lmb-heeger-inc/MDC973-PLAIN/L127-ND/1725

for a control and relay box, drill some vent holes as well as a small 12 volt fan to help keep it cool. I would mount it on top of where the sitter was with a slight air space between. Remove all the switches well as  adding a controlled plug to run the vent fan with a plug and fuse in the box.The transformer would have a switch and fuse as well.

The parts I can not get from Digikey I was thinking of getting from PSH in Canada. They have the wire, terminal block and thermocouplers.

Here is a partial parts list I am planning on using

 

 

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post-66819-0-84275500-1473265035_thumb.png

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Ron, that's a good start, didn't focus on you being north of the 49th, so your sources will be different. Internal fan for the enclosure could be an asset, but you'll need to drill a LOT of vent holes in that box to get adequate airflow through it. But that's just time and effort with a drill. Some quick thoughts - you have a 12vDC fan on the list. There is no DC involved here. The transformer to the controller is AC and the controller works on AC. It may output DC to the relays, but that conversion is on the controller board. The relays will switch the main AC power to the controlled devices. If the control box is separated from the wiring case on the kiln, you will need appropriate transitions to protect where the exposed wires to go through, don't just have a bundle of wires jumping the open gap.

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Looking for some information as to wire size to feed the elements. I am thinking of installing a Genesis controller instead of the Sitter on my Skutt 1027. It requires 48 amps 240 volt single phase.  So 12 gauge wire should be lots to wire up each  of the 6 elements if I am correct.

I am planning on running with 3 zones as the cost is almost the same except for 2 additional thermocouplers.

Was thinking of 8g thermocouplers in  Mullite Protection tubes.

Any suggestions would be greatly welcome.

Thanks

You will need high temp 12 gauge wire to hook up the elements. I use appliance hook up wire which is used to wire electric stoves.   I did this years ago on my Skutt kilns.  I got the Bartlet contoller with transformer and pilot relays from Euclids.com.  I used Omega type K thermocuples 1/4 " diameter with there low drift inconel sheath.  I mounted the parts with controller and fan in a separate box and plug each section of the kiln into the box. The plug and cord is 30 amp dryer cord from Home Depot for the elements. I now am set up to control three different kilns from one controller.  The controller box itself is plugged into a wall outlet 6-50 plug and receptacle.  None of my kilns exceed 35 amps, and only are 2 zones.

David

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Ho do you plan to mount the controller and protect it from the heat? If I were you, I would build an external control box that you can just plug the kiln into. Much less wiring, much less work, better for the electronics.

 

 

That really is a much better way to go. The cool thing about that is you can use it to control whatever other future manual kilns that may follow you home. (I have that problem) :D Non mercury relays are stupid cheap. ($8.12 here http://www.onlinecomponents.com/te-connectivity-p-b-brand-t92p7d2212.html?p=12114975&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Shopping%20Suppliers&utm_term=&utm_content=isbo4w5O&ref=GoogleAd:Shopping%20Suppliers-TE%20Connectivity%20/%20P&B%20Brand).

 

Shopping around for a single mercury to run a stand alone controller will yield better results than popping from a manufacturer too but they aren't exactly "cheap". I think the best price I found on a double pole 60A/240V mercury relay was around $125 plus shipping. That should handle everything south of a Paragon Viking and a SkuttKM1627. Most things you'll run across should max at around 48 amps. I like the idea of a single 60a mercury relay for simplicity and longevity. You could go 100amp mercury but IIRC, that'll bring you up to about $250.

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Might me better to mount the new box to the side of the existing box making sure it has clearance from the kiln wall Could get a larger box then with the same type of shape to tilt the control panel for ease of use.

The reason for not going with a wall mount system is so I can use 3 zone controls

I thought about using a wall control for 2 kilns but instead I sold my smaller kiln.

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Hi Dirt

Just looked at the link for the relay, that is a great price. the same relay from digikey canada is $19.27. The funny thing is that they both have the same part # but 1 listed as 40 amp and the one from digikey is 30 amp. Strange as they should be the same

 

Cross border shipping at times can cost more than the item you purchase.

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You can still use 3 thermocouples with a wall mount. It's no different than having a single thermo. Just run the thermo wires from the box to the kiln. You can twist tie them together so it's not messy looking, or even tie them to the kiln power cord so it's super clean looking. The L&L DaVinci kilns have zone control with a free-standing control box.

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That might not be a bad idea Niel, just bundle the wires a wire loom. The only difference is longer wire runs but definitely cooler on the control box especially with it mounted on a concrete wall.

Will have to think on that one.

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You can still use 3 thermocouples with a wall mount. It's no different than having a single thermo. Just run the thermo wires from the box to the kiln. You can twist tie them together so it's not messy looking, or even tie them to the kiln power cord so it's super clean looking.

 

 

We had a Viking that we were having trouble with reaching temps. I spoke to Paragon after doing everything I could think of after checking everything and they said to make sure the TC wire wasn't close to the element wires. Come to find out, the TC wire was in fact too close to the element feed wires and caused the board to read the TC wrong. I moved the TC wire over and it worked great afterwards. I don't know if that applies to a well insulated power cord but it definitely made a difference being close to the element wires with an Orton board.

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That might not be a bad idea Niel, just bundle the wires a wire loom. The only difference is longer wire runs but definitely cooler on the control box especially with it mounted on a concrete wall.

Will have to think on that one.

 

 

Not really, mount it by the plug. ;)  You could build it where the back would plug directly into the plug then the sides of the box could be screwed to the wall. B)

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