Installation & User Guides
here to download the Australian Operation Manual and Warranty Policy -
printer friendly pdf version]
[click here to download
the Australian Installation and Technical Manual -
printer friendly pdf version]
Phase-Changer converters are manufactured to the highest standards and
utilize a unique
microprocessor based controller to provide quality 3 phase output
from your single
phase utility supply.
While your converter does provide a true 3 phase output, there are
a few 'tricks' that
you must understand before you connect your Phase-Changer power
Therefore it is most important that you read the following installation
BEFORE powering up your equipment.
1. Understanding the Phase-Changer
Note: Colours, Voltages, Currents and
Warranty quoted refer to the Australian models
- this will vary between
Three phase converters are designed primarily for the connection
of 3 phase machines
and other 3 phase loads. It is important that you understand that
2 of the 3 phases are
generated by the converter. The third phase is the original supply
active which is used
to power the converter. This phase goes straight through the converter
and IS THE
ONLY PHASE THAT HAS A 240V OUTPUT WHEN MEASUERED TO NEUTRAL OR
EARTH. THE OTHER 2 GENERATED PHASES DO NOT HAVE A 240V
REFERENCE TO EARTH OR NEUTRAL. The two generated phases are L1/Red
output and L2/White output.
L1/ Red output to earth or neutral will measure approx 160V.
L2 / White output to earth or neutral will be approx 360V.
L3 / Blue output to earth or neutral will measure the original supply
voltage - 240V.
For 99% of applications this is not a problem as phase to phase
voltages of 415V +/-
5% between each of the 3 phases still exists.
What is important is that each machine connected to the converter
is checked to the
following guidelines. If not, machines may not function correctly
and in some extreme
cases, damage to the machine or the converter may occur.
HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU ALWAYS USE A LICENCED QUALIFIED
ELECTRICIAN FOR THE INSTALLATION OF YOUR PHASE-CHANGER
DO NOT MAKE ANY CHANGES WITH POWER CONNECTED
2. Phase-Changer Electrical
During start-up of the 'Phase Changer' converter or
any connected motor or machine,
supply currents may rise to 500% of the maximum nominal input currents
shown on the
motor nameplate. The converter should be installed as close to the
possible. This will reduce voltage drop when the converter or an
external motor starts.
Install a motor rated fuse or delayed circuit breaker in the customers
Install an industrial single-phase three pin wall switch-socket
combination, or connect
directly to the Switchboard circuit breaker. The neutral wire must
be connected (even on
480V installations). In standard form, the converter is supplied
with a 5mtr orange circular
supply cable for direct connection to the
phase power supply.
Rated Fuses or Circuit Breaker Size
Output current at 415V 3 phase
Position of pilot motor
Phase Change for larger sized converters (ie 18KW, 22KW, 30KW, 37KW,
45KW, 55KW, 64KW)
Output: In standard order, the converter is supplied with a 5 core
orange circular output
cable approx 5 mtrs long. Ideally, this could be connected to a
small 3 phase distribution
board to provide individual correctly sized circuit breaker protection
to the connected
load(s), just like a normal 3 phase installation. Machines or 3
phase outlets would be
connected to the distribution board. Alternatively, converters can
be ordered with either
optional outlet(s) or with a small distribution board fitted to
the converter housing. Some
users connect the converter output cable direct to a machine, however
note that machine
protection will be limited to the converter's
supply CB or fuse only.
All hard wired
converters are fitted with correctly sized input and output
'D' curve circuit breakers for convenience and protection. In
these cases you will need to supply and connect suitable
cable between the converter, the supply and the load. You must
still provide overcurrent protection device at your switchboard supply point.
It is most important that this cable size is generous and not
3. Machine Connections
Most 3 phase machinery requires a 3 wire 3 phase (plus earth) connection
only. If this is
the case with your machine, and a plug is fitted there will only
be 4 pins on the plug. Many
of these have no more than a 3 phase motor and a switch, without
any internal control
circuit or contactor. For these type of machines no special connection
is required other
than checking motor direction, which can be changed by swapping
two of any of the 3
3 Phase 3 Wire (plus earth), without
Neutral but with internal control circuit,
contactors and/or relays:
The internal control circuit will be designed to operate off two
of the three phases, or 415V
(Australia). This will either be via a 415V control transformer
or by contactors and relays
that have 415V coils fitted. In any case it is critical that the
control circuit is powered from
the L1 / Red and L3 / Blue phases only.
To check this one method is to simply trace out the wires. Alternatively,
connect the supply
to and from the converter so the control circuit of your machine
is powered up, but do not
attempt to start the machine itself. Using a multimeter on the ACV
range, measure each of
the 2 legs of the control voltage to earth. For example, across
the control transformer
input, one leg should read 160V (being L1) to earth and the other
should read 240V (being
L3) to earth. Between the 2 phases there will be 415V (or possibly
up to 5% more, due to
an unloaded condition).
If L2 is connected, one leg will read approx 360V to earth and some
minor changes will
need to be made to correct this:
Suggestion 1; swap the control circuit supply wire in the control
panel to the correct phase.
Suggestion 2; rotate phases on the machines supply plug or connection
box to establish
the correct voltages on the control circuit. Use multimeter voltage
check to confirm.
Test the machine; Once all of the above is OK, quickly pulse the
motor on and off to check
direction. If correct the installation is now complete. If the motor
direction needs changing,
swap supply phases L1 / Red and L3 / Blue ONLY. This will reverse
the motor direction,
while keeping the control circuit phase connections still correct.
Swapping phases at the
machines supply will change the direction of all motors or individual
motors can be
changed at their control contactor or overload.
3 Phase 4 Wire (plus earth), with
All 3 phase machines that also require a neutral connection, have
one thing in common -
there is 240V load(s) associated with that machine. It may be a
control circuit, lighting,
heating element, smaller single phase motor, solenoid etc.
What you must do is determine that the single phase load(s) are
and ensure that the active
associated with that load is supplied by L3 / Blue wire from the
converter. As explained
previously, this is the only phase that has a 240V reference to
neutral (& earth).
If the wrong phase is connected, the supply voltage to the single
phase load(s) will be low
(approx 170V for L1) or high (approx 360V for L2). The machine will
probably not function
correctly and in extreme cases damage may occur to either the machine
or to the
Suggested checking method;
· Apply power to the machine, but leave the main switch or
circuit breaker on the
machine turned off.
· Use a multimeter to identify which phase is which. As stated
previously, L1 to N or
earth will be approx 170V, L2 to N or earth will be approx 360V
and L3 to N or earth
· Once you know the phase connections coming in, switch off
the converter and trace
the machines wires to ensure any 240V loads are connected between
L3 / Blue
phase and Neutral ONLY.
the Machine: Once all the above is OK, pulse the motor on and off
motor direction. If correct, installation is complete. If the motor
changing, swap L1 / red phase and L2 / white phase ONLY. This will
motor(s) direction, while still keeping the control circuit and
other single phase loads on
the correct L3 phase. Swapping L1 & L2 at the machine supply
will change the
direction of all motors, while individual motors can be changed
at the associated motor
contactor or overload.
The most common single phase 240V load on a machine is a control
however it is possible (in very few cases) to have a 415V control
circuit while still
having other single phase 240V loads on the machine. In this situation,
you will need to
take extra special care, when checking out the machine connections.
controls electrician is highly recommended.
Provided the correct sized converter is selected, most 3 phase welders
when powered by a Phase-Changer. All Phase-Changer converters are
with a 'hard start feature' which will provide a significant
power boost for short periods in
high load conditions. This is ideal for most machine applications,
but not necessarily
desirable while welding.
As welder sizes, operating currents and welding applications vary
dramatically, it is very
difficult to set the correct level for the 'hard start'
feature to cut in during welding
applications. A 'hard start' event will be evident by
a solid pulsing of the converter. If this is
happening a lot while welding, you may well be welding at high currents
nearer the limit of
the converters output capability. In very few cases and as an added
feature in the Phase-
Changer, the hard start feature may be desensitised by removing
a link LK1 on the top
board of the microprocessor controller. As an option we can fit
a selector switch to the
outside of the converter for multiple applications where the two
levels of sensitivity can be
Single phase 415V welders; There have been a couple of instances
where a customer
thought he had a 3 phase welder (as it was fitted with a 3 phase
but in actual fact it was a single phase 415V welder, which was
connected across two
phases only. This needs to be confirmed before connecting the welder
to the converter. If
it is in fact a single phase welder, the input current requirements
need to be determined
and you must then confirm with our factory before proceeding. Welders
by their nature are
high current / high power devices and while the current draw on
3 phases can be quite
high, it is significantly higher if the welder needs to operate
of two wires only, in the case of
a single phase 415V connection. While we do not recommend the connection
phase welders to Phase-Changer converters, connection may be possible
input power requirements do not exceed the rated output of the internal
transformer or of
the internal start and load contactors. Connection MUST only be
between L1 / red phase
and L3 / blue phase. Any connection to L2 / White phase will not
work and will probably
cause damage to the converter, which will not be covered under warranty.
Damage due to
component overload caused by the connection of single phase welders
converters will also not be covered under the factory warranty.
4. Converter Operation
A successful converter start will be evident by the sound of the
rotating pilot motor and the
click of the load contactor energising a few seconds later.
In standard form the Phase-Changer is not fitted with power switch.
For these models
simply turn power on at the supply circuit breaker or on another
separate external power
switch that has been installed by your electrician.
Phase-Changers from 8KW upwards are also fitted with a delayed start
This contactor is controlled by the microprocessor controller and
ensures that the pilot
motor has stopped rotating before allowing the converter to start
or restart. During a
normal start there will be a few seconds delay once power is applied
before the converter
actually starts. In the event of a brown out or other short term
power loss, the converter will
shut down completely and wait until the start conditions are safe
restarting the converter. Depending on the size of the converter,
the restart may take
anywhere from 10 seconds to a minute.
All Phase-Changers are fitted with a delayed output contactor that
connects the load to the
converter several seconds after the converter has started. This
prevents failed starts due
to loads being connected to the machine at the same time that the
converter is attempting
to start. This is also for applications like compressors, with the
internal load contactor
replacing the need for an external timer and motor contactor which
is usually required with
other converter manufacturers installations.
There is no overload protection fitted inside the Phase-Changer.
Simply selecting the
correct size supply circuit breaker, as detailed in the previous
table, at the time of
installation will provide overall overload protection. We always
recommend that individual
machines are separately protected by the
correct sized 3 phase circuit breaker or fuses, in
exactly the same way as a normal utility 3 phase installation.
4.1 Phase-Changer Options
· Delayed Start; standard on 8KW plus converters as detailed
above. Does provide
addition protection to the converter from power disturbances etc.
Can be fitted to
smaller converters, usually with either the on/off switch or manual/off/automatic
switch as detailed below.
· On/Off switch on converter; for starting and stopping the
converter locally. Requires
delayed start option as detailed above.
· Manual/Off/Automatic switch; allows manual operation of
the converter or automatic
operation via a 2 wire remote control cable. This is ideal for compressors,
rooms etc, where an existing pressure or temperature switch on the
be used to start the converter which in turn provides the 3 phase
power back to the
Balancing Transformer: In some cases it is almost impossible to
a machine so all single phase loads are connected to
L3. By fitting one of these
transformers to the output of the
converter, the neutral is centred between the phases
will then exist between each phase and neutral. This is very rarely
but is available if
Phase-Changer Converters are designed for long life operation. Other
an electric motor, there are no moving parts in your Phase-Changer
servicing is not required.
Three year 'back to base' from invoice date. Includes
parts and labour, but excludes
transport charges. See the Operation Manual for
The controller is installed inside the power
converter and does not need
to be viewed for normal operation.
Approximately two seconds after the converter
starts, a second switch will automatically
The electronics in the converter will detect
the motor if it is still spinning, wait for it to slow
down to a near stop, add a four second delay,
then go through a normal startup sequence.
While the motor is waiting to
start the 'decimal
point' on the LED display will flash.
(Note that the single-stage
'PCS' series of converters do not come with this LED
When the converter starts there is usually a
brief 'shudder' as the internal motor is quickly
brought up to maximum
speed. The LED display
will briefly flash a digit '8' as the internal
first activated, but this will quickly revert to a '0'
as the converter reaches full speed.
operate to connect the generated
3 phase power to the customer load. This
short two second
delay ensures that the converter
motor has achieved full speed before any load is applied.
(The 3 phase circuit breaker within the control box
must be ON for
the load to be connected)
Once the 3 phase customer load is successfully
applied to the converter, the electronics will
measure the load
current and decide how it should be managed. As well as displaying a
'0' for a no-load condition,
the converter can display a value from '1'
present drive level of the converter. If the
load is a light one, it may simply step up to
a level '2' or '3'. Level '7' would be regarded as a
heavy load. When the load has settled
down, the display will remain steady on a given
drive level and the decimal
point of the
display will have a steady glow. This indicates that all the
output voltages are satisfactorily
balanced and stable.
Display Level '8' is a special 'Hard Start' level that only comes on
briefly when the converter
is first activated or when a
very heavy, hard to start load is first applied. It
engages a large
capacitors inside the converter to get big motors turning. Equipment such as air
compressors and refrigeration systems need a lot of energy to
get the motor going
against built up air or coolant pressures. The converter will automatically
duration of this boost level so that it quickly
reverts back to level 1-7 tracking as soon as the
load gets going.
This special Hard Start level is a valuable feature of
all Phase Changer converters. Because
it can draw on the energy stored in the capacitor bank and the
kinetic energy obtained
from the spinning converter motor, it
can deliver instantaneous current many times the
level available from
the power line source.
sufficient start power cannot be
delivered to a big load, then
the load motor will stall and effectively short out the supply
until a circuit breaker trips a