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Author Topic: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid  (Read 1897 times)

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Offline Dangerous_Dan

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Most of you guys know I'm powering my mill with a 15 hp 3 phase motor.
Problem is my shop only has single phase power so I have been using an Onan 30 kw genset with a 6 cylinder ford gas engine to power it.
Fuel consumption has been about 5 gals of gas every 2-2.5 hours of milling.
With gas at $3 a gallon I'm spending $6 - $7.50 an hour for fuel. Not to mention any routine mainenance or breakdown costs involved with the genset.
So I bought a 220 volt single phase 10 hp motor from Grainger. Cost $650.
I Had to modify the motor bracket to match up with the frame size of the 15 hp motor that the mill was built to use and a new bushing for the drive pulley due to different shaft sizes.
It's now on and working.
The motor is rated at 38 amps full load. No load I'm measuring 5 amps.
Most milling has the current around 40 amps with 85 amps being the peak when hitting a knot or just milling fast.
Power is a little less but has enough to work well where as with the 15 hp motor it had more power than you would ever need.
When milling an entire log start to finish the motor is at full load only 25% of the time. The rest of the time it's only 5 amps.
I used 50 amps for full load in my calculations 25% of the time and 5 amps for the remaining 75% of the time. I come up with an operating cost of about 36 cents per hour with power costing 10 cents a kwHr.
I'm not sure if my math is right but it looks like this will be a modification that will save me some $ and it's a lot quieter than having the genset running 40 feet away.
The only draw back I see to single phase vs. three phase is the power is not as smooth. The motor has a definate 60 cycle buzz vibration to it. The 3 phase motor was smoother and quieter.
Actual savings may vary.
What's the fuel consuption of other mills?
First you make it work, then you trick it out!

Offline DanG

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2007, 11:03:09 pm »
I'm using somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.5-2 gal/hr on my Mobile Dimension saw.  It would probably do better if my engine was in good shape.

Did you consider building a phase converter?  Hang on to that 3ph motor, as it still could be an option in the future.
"I don't feel like an old man.  I feel like a young man who has something wrong with him."  Dick Cavett
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Offline jpgreen

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2007, 01:31:17 am »
My KawaMizer seems to be using a bit less than 1 gallon per hour, probably closer to 2/3's of a gallon.
-95 Wood-Mizer LT40HD 27 Hp Kawasaki water cooled engine-

Offline amberwood

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2007, 03:34:01 am »
about one litre per hour....diesel @ AUD$1.25 a litre.

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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2007, 06:00:29 am »
I'm running a much larger genset.   We are probably using something like 8-9 gal/hr of diesel.  We're also running a chipper, several large motors (our hydraulics pump about 125 gal/min), a blower, and belts and lights.  We're also putting out about 1500 bf/hr.

Maybe your 30 kw genset is too much for your operations.  A smaller unit would have lower fuel consumption and you wouldn't have a power dropoff.
Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

Online Dave Shepard

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2007, 11:40:25 am »
I have a UD-9 International 25kw genset, running an LT40E15, it uses hardly any fuel at all, if we run for an hour it only uses about 3 inches out of a five gallon pail. I think that if I had a full load on it, it might use a gallon or so an hour. There is something to be said for low rpm motors. Surprisingly it is louder standing at the fan end, than with the exhuast blowing at you on the other end. I would think a phase converter would be a good way to go for your application if you have to have 3phase.


Dave

Wood-Mizer LT40HDD51-WR Wireless, Kubota L48, Honda Rincon 650, TJ208 G-S, and a 60"LogRite!

Offline olyman

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2007, 02:10:56 pm »
you can also buy small kw diesel three phase gensets---me thinks that would be the way to go---

Offline solidwoods

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Re: Operating Costs per Hour- Gasoline Genset vs. Power Co. Grid
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2007, 07:30:32 am »
Build a 3ph converter from a 3ph motor, run it off your distribution panel of have the elect co. put a pole near the mill.
 
Fuel ,, 16hp briggs 2cyl, 3gl in 8hrs.
jim
Ret. US Army
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Woodworking since 83
I mill & kiln dry lumber, build custom furniture, artworks, flooring, etc.
If you mill, you'll be interested in some of my work in one way or another.
We ship from our showroom.
N. Central TN.