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Old 07-01-2010, 16:13   #1
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Watermaker Wiring

I am trying to make a decision on how to wire up my watermaker. Originally the compressor was engine driven. I have converted it to a 125v 3/4 HP motor now. It works fine in the shop but now I need to make it work on the boat. I have a 3.5kw generator which will be the source of power for the watermaker. The watermaker recomends a 30 amp breaker. My AC panel is full. There are no more spaces left. I was thinking of running a sub pannel as is often done in houses. In order to do that I would need to remove one of the Ac breakers and install a 30 amp breaker that would bring power to the sub panel. from there I would run the watermaker as the only AC load and then rewire whatever load was taken off of the main panel. It seems a bit clumsy to me but I can't think of any other way to do it. Doe you guys have any ideas?
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Old 07-01-2010, 17:03   #2
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One option would be to install the new sub-panel physically somewhere between the main AC panel and some of the AC loads, and move those loads' breakers to the sub-panel. Lots of work, but you'd free up space for future breakers.

Of course, that would only be prudent if you could re-run some of the circuits without pulling new wire for the existing circuits. And if you don't overload your AC system - we can assume you did a sanity check to make sure the 30A load wouldn't overwhelm your AC system - for a 3.5kw genset, you won't be able to run much of anything else simultaneously - like charging the batteries (although you could probably run the genset for the bulk phase, and then startup the watermaker once it's well into absorption?)
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Old 07-01-2010, 17:14   #3
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Beau:

In re reading my post I see I wasn't too clear. The Genset has a single 30 amp breaker when in 120v mode. I figure I could only run the watermaker and then would have to charge the batteries once I was done making water. Fortunately the watermaker that the PO installed is of such capacity that I can get a couple of days worth of water in an hour or so.
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Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 07-01-2010, 18:04   #4
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Interesting... my catamaran came with a Northern Lights gen set and 1.5 hp watermaker. I sold the gen set and mounted the watermaker pump on one engine! got rid of about 500 lbs in t hat hull in the process. Rarely had to make water when not motoring already.... I see no problem with a sub panel though.... seems a good way to go.
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Old 07-01-2010, 19:29   #5
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Run a circuit from the 30A breaker on the gen-set to another 30A breaker at the watermaker. The breaker on the gen-set will protect the gen-set and the circuit to the watermaker. The breaker at the watermaker will protect/operate the watermaker.

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Old 08-01-2010, 10:53   #6
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Thanks Viking that sounds like a good idea.
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Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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