Dealt with Phase-Quest in Ontario, Canada? Running a Phase-A-Matic? Thoughts?
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    Default Dealt with Phase-Quest in Ontario, Canada? Running a Phase-A-Matic? Thoughts?

    Just curious if anyone has had any dealings with Phase-Quest in Mississauga, Ontario, for transformers or rotary phase converters?

    I'm in the market for a 5 HP set with a 6 KVA transformer, but I'm not the fence about whether to go with the significantly more expensive Phase-A-Matic, which doesn't come with any switching or overload (I presume), whereas the Phase-Quest is the full setup essentially ready to run out of the box.

    Let me know if you have either of these brands and tell me your thoughts about setup, value, features (if any)... etc.

    Thanks!

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    No info on the company....

    BUT....

    Aside from the import duty issue, which may account for cost, when faced with a unit offering bells and whistles for the same or lower price as a basic unit without them, it pays to investigate. Bells and whistles cost, and the only way to get the price back down is to cut somewhere else (unless the differential is sufficiently explained by import duty).

    So first you may want to double check to be sure the ratings etc are the same, both have CSA or C-UL etc, etc. Something has to pay for extras.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post
    No info on the company....

    BUT....

    Aside from the import duty issue, which may account for cost, when faced with a unit offering bells and whistles for the same or lower price as a basic unit without them, it pays to investigate. Bells and whistles cost, and the only way to get the price back down is to cut somewhere else (unless the differential is sufficiently explained by import duty).

    So first you may want to double check to be sure the ratings etc are the same, both have CSA or C-UL etc, etc. Something has to pay for extras.
    Good points. I know the machines I'm looking at are both rated for 5 HP. That's the largest motor that can be run/started and I'm not using anything close to that, but I am running multiple motors.

    The Phase-a-matic seems more compact, but it will still need a magnetic switch with overload. All of this seems to be included in the Phase-Quest

    There should not be import duty, since the Phase-a-matic is made in the USA. Remember NAFTA? That's one of the benefits. Most small equipment made in the USA and Canada are duty exempt, with conditions of course. Some of the shipping companies take advantage of people not knowing this. There might be a brokerage fee, but that would be marginal compared to the roughly $400 to $500 price difference on the Phase-a-matic between Canadian and US retailers. You guys do have about 10 times the number of people down there, so that could keep prices down a bit.

    My concern is really the price of the Phase-Quest, which is questionably low. Not sure if it's too good to be true or it's just a simple enough design made locally.

    I will look at the spec sheets a bit closer...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarrod View Post

    My concern is really the price of the Phase-Quest, which is questionably low. Not sure if it's too good to be true or it's just a simple enough design made locally.
    What is the price difference????

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    People do complain about large fees and charges for goods imported into Canada from the US. "Duty" was probably the wrong word.

    Is the $400- $500 also the approximate cost differential between the units?

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    Well after reading the specs on website, CSA approved, I would'nt worry about much else. The way they test electrical stuff is right down to product faillure. So they have very good idea of the claims or integrity of whatever they are testing.

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    "Safe", and "starts the machine in high speed no problem" are two different things.

    The CSA mark "gets you in the door", shows there is some integrity. Then it comes down to how well it actually works. That can be hard to judge from a distance.

    If one is physically smaller, running 3450 rpm, etc, you are entitled to think that the larger sized 1725 rpm machine may be quieter and more capable. That's not always true, but it is a tendency, and deserves some more investigation when the "little screamer" is also cheaper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rigor View Post
    What is the price difference????
    Lowest I found the 5HP Phase-a-matic for, online, was about $890 USD, which is around $1,116 CND. That's fine, exchange is crap, but the lowest I've seen this unit for up here is around $1400 and as much as $1600 and change.

    On the other hand, the Phase-Quest sells from the manufacturer for the tidy sum of $689 CND. That's just over $500 USD.

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    I have a few machines that have 3 HP and the biggest rotary converter I have is 3 HP. Welders and the air compressor are single phase so a non issue there. I still do not understand the reasoning of members claiming 2 to 3 times the load HP for a converter? My lathe is a gear head machine without a clutch and can instant reverse in any of the lower speeds, runs fine and has been since 1990 with the same 3 HP converter.
    I have a total of 3 phase converters in different buildings and 2 are home brew 3HP and the other is a used 2HP American Rotary Phase converter I found on Craiglist used right after I retired. One thing I noticed is the American Rotary converter is noisier than the home brewed converters I have but performs exactly as the others?
    A google search on prices led to ebay with one showing about $400 for a new one like mine and about $500 for the next bigger one? I didn't check details on shipping so there may be restrictions but don't see a thousand dollars worth.
    Dan

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    Ask yourself what is the difference between American rotary and Phase quest.

    They are built on the same platform, probably by the same company, probably with the same motor, contactors, relays, capacitors, motor, electrical box.

    The only thing that might need to be different is CSA versus UL.

    So let’s compare apples to apples not apples to oranges. Let’s compare the price difference between 2=>5 hp’s RPC’s

    American rotary ad 5 hp RPC (with no bells and whistle‘s) = $437 USD
    Phase quest 5 hp RPC (with no bells and whistle‘s) = $689 CAD

    The main question is does phase quest have a CSA approved model?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny VanVoorn View Post
    ... but don't see a thousand dollars worth.
    Dan
    Thanks for the insight Dan. That's what I was thinking myself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Matt View Post
    The main question is does phase quest have a CSA approved model?
    Question on the way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Matt View Post
    ....

    The main question is does phase quest have a CSA approved model?
    The 5 HP does not seem to have the mark. It has something on the front panel label which looks like it, but is not. I cannot find any other readable labels in the photos, the CSA mark might be elsewhere.

    UL has a different mark for a product like this which is not a complete item like a lamp, or a dehumidifier. CSA does not appear to, everything has "CSA" in the stylized logo form, with modifiers.

    CSA Marks & Labels for North America | CSA Group

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    Quote Originally Posted by JST View Post
    The 5 HP does not seem to have the mark. It has something on the front panel label which looks like it, but is not. I cannot find any other readable labels in the photos, the CSA mark might be elsewhere.

    UL has a different mark for a product like this which is not a complete item like a lamp, or a dehumidifier. CSA does not appear to, everything has "CSA" in the stylized logo form, with modifiers.

    CSA Marks & Labels for North America | CSA Group
    CSA is a double edge sword. Most manufacturers can’t bost this, when a modification happens afterwards. A new on-site electrical approval is required. This is why under the CSA they cut off the cord so a second approval is required on site. This makes a second certification under the CSA and governing law . Homeowners are allowed to apply for this... and so are electricians with a third-party inspection. But in anyway if this is a residential property, the ESA needs to be involved. If it is a commercial property, a commercial/industrial electrician is allowed to sign off for it if he is licensed appropriately, which has no residents . There is no if and or butts!

    I’ll give you an example. A 7.5 hp air compressor set up on a residential property requires two things, and they can be done under the same certification/inspection by a third-party.

    The inspection checks main for New load calculation, and the second is internal… Circuit, disconnect, Wire size, proper installation, fusing, proper grounding, plug (if applicable) and proper lock out.

    This is something that most manufacturers of RPCs can’t guarantee under the CSA or ESA.

    Under the ESA any and all plug outlets need to be checked.

    If a circuit under NEC article 455 or 455.6 which is very similar to our generating circuit requires a individual/industrial inspection, On residential properties. It is allowed, but not without inspection, under a wind turbine/ generator,Inspection under the ESA.

    I’d like to be corrected so I can fight these guys.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Matt View Post
    CSA is a double edge sword. Most manufacturers can’t bost this, when a modification happens afterwards. A new on-site electrical approval is required. This is why under the CSA they cut off the cord so a second approval is required on site. This makes a second certification under the CSA and governing law . Homeowners are allowed to apply for this... and so are electricians with a third-party inspection. But in anyway if this is a residential property, the ESA needs to be involved. If it is a commercial property, a commercial/industrial electrician is allowed to sign off for it if he is licensed appropriately, which has no residents . There is no if and or butts!

    Sounds like maybe you missed the point....? Some products are complete, needing only to be plugged-in, some are parts used in a larger product or system, and some, like an RPC, are "installed" and the installation matters.

    That is what the NEC is for in the US. UL is a required approval for the piece, be it RPC, an electrical box, wire, a conduit connector, etc, but a separate inspector looks at the installation. There is no "cutting off the cord", it is just another level of inspection. The part or incomplete unit has "recognition", but not a full approval, because more has to be done to it.

    In this case, the RPC as a unit would receive a form of UL (or in this case presumably CSA) approval/recognition, to assure that it is worthy to be installed. Then the electrical inspector would check to be sure that the thing was installed in accordance with its requirements etc, per the NEC. (National Electrical Code), AKA NFPA 79, as accepted by the local authorities.

    The electrical inspector has nothing to do whatever with the innards of the thing, he just looks at the UL mark to be sure it is "listed for the use", and the marked ratings to be sure that appropriate wire is used to connect it, etc.

    For parts a manufacturer uses in a product, periodic inspections by UL (and presumably CSA for you) assure that the parts called for and documented to be the same as the ones used in the test samples are actually being put in the product.

    The approval mark is no double-edge sword, it is the proof that the item has been inspected and tested to be safe per the regulations when installed correctly. Without that, an OSHA inspector in the US can (and I have seen it done) close down the place until non-approved equipment is disconnected. The NEC here, and presumably the Canadian equivalent, calls for equipment to be "listed for the usage", generally meaning tested to UL standards for the use it is intended for. The mark is intended to prove that, and to permit that usage.

    Obviously if equipment has been modified in ways outside what is listed in instructions for use, then the UL mark no longer applies. Likewise if not used "as intended". But that is not what is in question here.

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    Sorry I did a small edit while you were typing.

    I bought a 4 hp jointer/planer that was built in Austria. I had to pay for the ESA approval, which required three wire control, and disconnect at machine with lock out. The cord was cut off which required residential ESA a approval for installation. Any and all new wiring under the ESA for residential use requires a new approval.

    Residential properties north of the border can put an electrician into bankruptcy or in jail, if he/she screws up/or purposely neglects the rules. His/her license can be revoked. If he/she is a subcontractor not licensed properly, large fines or jail time could be inforced personally. Even advising somebody under the Canadian electrical code wrongfully could get a license revoked.

    Homeowners do have a loophole.
    Last edited by Matt Matt; 10-11-2017 at 12:34 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarrod View Post
    Question on the way.
    All of their machines are CSA approved, as indicated to me directly from the horse's mouth.

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    Finally, an actual update. Hard to get around here.....most of the time.

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    I was hoping an answer would be reached if a good product as I am sourcing something for a friend to use for his shop. By the way, CSA is only one of a number of "approved for use" inspection bodies allowed in Canada. ULc is actually usually a better qualifier in many opinions but others are available. Recognized Certification Marks - EsaSafe

    My main concern to me here is the factor of quality parts. Noisy, inefficient, durable, etc. I was looking at Dyna-Phase and they have different qualities for Light-Med-Heavy and cleaner power setups for sensitive equip. I believe you get what you pay for but, it doesn't always mean you have to pay more for good quality. So is this the pricing factor. Is it all China junk, that though it rates sufficient for a sticker, it isn't that great.

    I've seen all kinds of approved junk and it becomes more prevalent as we are directed more and more to cut costs to stay competitive against the competition that doesn't care about the after, in a time where people generally are apathetic until it bites them personally, and even then. Bathroom hand dryers are a perfect example that everyone gets a taste of but they still install crap.

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    Weird, I thought I had chimed in already but it was late so maybe I oopsed.
    I was hoping someone could chime in with some experience on this company as I am trying to help a buddy with his shop and was looking at them as well.
    FYI there is more than one approval agency recognized in Canada (Recognized Certification Marks - EsaSafe)
    My past experience is the ULc is far more rigorous in its product testing.
    That said it does have some approval, but is it good. What quality, is it a screamer, how clean is the power? I was as well looking at Dyna-Phase (3-Phase Power - Percision Motor Sales) and seen multiple grades (Light, General, Heavy and tight voltage tolerance) which I don't see on PQs site (one model per size). Now as well in looking at other forums I seen people take issue to Leeson motors which is apparently what PQ uses. (Rotary Phase Converter - 2 HP 6- Phase Quest Inc.Phase Quest Inc.)
    I would love to build a RPC but where I am used & surplus motors and supplies are not a norm.

    EDIT: Added links to a PQ & DP RPC pages for easier comparing


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