Greets all. I have been reading and reading about distilling and related equipment over the last month or so and I have come to a conclusion. I am a dunce when it comes to electronics. I see that many people here on HD and out in the greater world post these snazzy little electronic diagrams with squiggly lines and such that are supposed to mean something but I have no clue how to read them. Might as well show them to my dog. Anyhow, I need a hand interpreting one such diagram and a critique of my plan for a heating element controller. Here goes:
I want to build a controller like was done here
with but one modification. I want to add a 120v (1500w) element and a switch for it to the mix in addition to the 240v (5500w) that a controller like that would normally power. I don't have the circuits to run two 240v heating elements so I thought that the extra 120v element would help reduce heat up times without the need to hire an electrician. As many have said on here, I can turn the extra element off once I reach operating temperature (hence the need for the extra switch). The controller will not be connected to the 120v element. I will simply use the switch to power it off when heatup is complete.
1. This is a bit different from the designs I have seen posted here
. Any reason that it won't work? Looks similar enough but has more bells and whistles, errrrm I mean useful features.
2. I know I am using cheap Chinese parts from ebay but the total cost is remarkably low compared to a retail solution or a PSR-25 based controller. Anyone used any of this stuff before? Am I throwing my money away?
3. Can I run the extra element off the neutral 120v wire of the 4 wire 240 cable or will I need to put a separate 120v power cord on this to power the extra element? If neutral can be used, can I route the neutral wire through a switch?
4. Is a 15a switch enough for the 120v pushing that many watts? (15*120=1800 I am guessing that I should be ok, being that the element is only 1500w?) I would prefer an expert's opinion to my own novice speculation.
Ok those are my questions for now. I am sure I will have more as this project progresses. Thanks in advance for any and all that respond.