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 Post subject: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 3:14 pm 
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Location: Livingston, TN
Anybody using one of these?

I'm curious as to how you're supplying the 100amps to the unit? I'm assuming you're tying in a 4 blade stove plug or using the existing one in the venue? But how are you getting 100 amps and full voltage to the unit? The stove plugs are only a 50 amp plug, yes?

I can't find it, but I believe I read somewhere that some guys were using a 4 blade plug, hot/hot/neutral/ground, on a 100amp double breaker and that will send 50 amps of 120 down each "hot" giving the distro effectively 100 amps of power at 120v, give or take.

I get that using the double pole 100 amp breaker you are getting power from both legs, total of 100 amps, but the plug is rated for 50 amps period correct? I know multi core cable has power rating per "line" so maybe it's possible to run 50 amps on one hot and 50 amps on the other hot BUT, how do you keep either "hot" from seeing the total 100 amps?I don't know much about breakers but I thought that a 100 amp double pole breaker is 100 amps, not split 1/2 and 1/2 per leg, correct?

Seems to me you'd have to run a 100 amp double pole breaker to a sub panel with lugs or camloks with 2 gauge feeder to get 100 amps of 120v to any distance, am I way off base here?

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 4:35 pm 
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I'm using one and I just love it.

You are on the right path, but you are sort of mixing your metaphors.

Yes, the plug on the Peavey Distro is a NEMA 14-50P. These are typically referred to as "50A Range Plugs" or something similar. They have four blades on them, Hot (Black), Hot (Red), Neutral (White), and Ground (Green). They are rated to provide 50 amperes of current down each of the hot legs from a 240V service. So, that means that if you stick the two probes from your volt meter between the two hot terminals, you should see between 208-250 volts AC. If you see zero volts, this is a MAJOR problem and it needs to be fixed. You should also be able to measure 110-130 volts between either of the hot legs and the neutral in all situations.

The correct breaker to use is NOT a 100A double pole breaker. This would provide 100A to each of the hot legs. The correct breaker to use is a 50A double pole breaker. This will provide 50A to each of the hot legs. However, since there are two hot legs, you will have a TOTAL of 100A at 110-130VAC when you add them together (50+50=100).

Essentially, the Peavey Distro is a dis-connectable sub panel that uses the NEMA 14-50P "Range Plug". It will provide six 20A breakered duplex outlets (12 individual outlets on 6 separate circuits). It is an amazing deal for anyone who has power issues to deal with.

I have the range plug on my distro, I have a 50' extension cable with a range plug on one end and a receptacle on the other end, and I have a receptacle with a short section of wire that comes out to tails that I can tie into a breaker box using the double pole 50A breaker. The whole setup is tremendously handy.

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:03 pm 
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Location: Livingston, TN
awesome, thanks Josh.

I was unsure about the 50 or 100 amp breaker as I've been told different things regarding their total rating... Most of what I've read has said that a double (any size) breaker is still the same size but just 240 volts. Say a double 50A breaker is still MAX a 50A breaker but now it's 240v vs 120v, is that not correct?

This is the part that I'm still very unclear on, which is true?:
A. A double 50A breaker has a 50A TOTAL capacity and if either leg of the breakers exceeds that 50A it will trip
B. A double 50A breaker has a 100A TOTAL capacity with each leg capable of 50A and if either breaker exceeds 50A, or a total of 100A between the entire breaker, it will trip
C. Something completely different?

So with a double 50 breaker, breaker handles up to 50 amps and then would also power one of the two "hot" legs of the feeder cable, correct? Now isn't the risk with a double breaker that if somehow you overload one leg the entire breaker will trip? Wouldn't it be better to run 2 independant 50 amp breakers but just make sure they're "stacked" or on opposite legs? I can also see it being beneficial when there may not be 2 open slots together.. Maybe not, just kind of thinking out loud..

So your set up is like this? (are you using the standard straight blade stove plug?)

Double 50A breaker to a box with a 50A female stove receptical in a box - 50' cable with male stove plug on one end and a female stove plug on the other - male 50A stove plug wired directly to your distro for 100A of 120 single phase?

What gauge of cable are you using? Are you using a multi conductor cable say like a 6/4?

I'd prefer a twist lock type of connecter to avoid or at least reduce accidental unplugging, wouldn't the connectors below work? Except I can't seem to find them available anywhere..


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Plugs.jpg
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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 5:06 pm 
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simplicity wrote:
awesome, thanks Josh.

No problem Allen, I'm glad to help when I can.

simplicity wrote:
I was unsure about the 50 or 100 amp breaker as I've been told different things regarding their total rating... Most of what I've read has said that a double (any size) breaker is still the same size but just 240 volts. Say a double 50A breaker is still MAX a 50A breaker but now it's 240v vs 120v, is that not correct?

In this application it is correct to use a "50A dual pole 240V" breaker. This will provide two hot legs with 50A available for each. If either is overloaded, the whole breaker will shut off. This is because you are providing a single circuit that would be described as "single phase 50A 240V 4-wire" indicating that there is one circuit that has two hot legs, a neutral, and a ground. Usually these kinds of circuits are used for 240VAC loads (like ranges or dryers) that have a 240V heating element in them. In these situations most of the load is balanced across the 240V hot legs. However, this is no different than supplying a sub-panel, which is what we are doing in this case. BUT, in this case, the load is not necessarily balanced between the two hot legs because we are breaking that service down into six 20A 120V circuits. So, some attention should be paid to be sure to balance your heavy loads between the two hot legs, rather than loading them all up on one side. You do have 100A of total capacity available at the Distro, but it is split up as 50A from each of the hot legs. So, balance your heavy drawing devices on each side of the service coming in and you can make the most from your available power source.

simplicity wrote:
This is the part that I'm still very unclear on, which is true?:
A. A double 50A breaker has a 50A TOTAL capacity and if either leg of the breakers exceeds that 50A it will trip
B. A double 50A breaker has a 100A TOTAL capacity with each leg capable of 50A and if either breaker exceeds 50A, or a total of 100A between the entire breaker, it will trip
C. Something completely different?

Option B is the closest to correct, BUT not completely correct. You essentially have two circuits with 50A available on each circuit. The Distro takes each of those circuits and distributes them to THREE 20A duplex outlets on the back of the unit via the circuit breakers on the front panel of the unit. When EITHER of the two circuits exceeds 50A the breaker will trip, there is no option of "or a total of 100A between the entire breaker".

simplicity wrote:
So with a double 50 breaker, breaker handles up to 50 amps and then would also power one of the two "hot" legs of the feeder cable, correct?

Yes. 50A per hot leg.

simplicity wrote:
Now isn't the risk with a double breaker that if somehow you overload one leg the entire breaker will trip?

Yes, that is an issue that you need to be aware of.

simplicity wrote:
Wouldn't it be better to run 2 independant 50 amp breakers but just make sure they're "stacked" or on opposite legs?

Yes, you could do this in a different situation, but NOT in this specific situation. In this situation you are providing one circuit that is 240V with a current carrying capacity of 50A. According to our national electric code, when you are providing a 240V circuit from a panel in the specific manner we have been discussing in this thread, you MUST tie the breaker handles together. If you wanted to provide two separate 120V 50A circuits, then each circuit MUST HAVE its own neutral. So, you would have to run two hots, two neutrals and a ground from the panel to the Distro. This will require a minimum of 5 conductors, AND you can NOT tie the neutrals together inside the distro, they MUST be kept separate! So, you will end up with a bunch of "non-standard" plugs, cables, and interconnects. This gets expensive and heavy quickly with the extra copper required by the additional neutral.

simplicity wrote:
I can also see it being beneficial when there may not be 2 open slots together.. Maybe not, just kind of thinking out loud..

Sure, it is handy to do, but it will not meet code if you were to get inspected.

simplicity wrote:
So your set up is like this? (are you using the standard straight blade stove plug?)

Double 50A breaker to a box with a 50A female stove receptical in a box - 50' cable with male stove plug on one end and a female stove plug on the other - male 50A stove plug wired directly to your distro for 100A of 120 single phase?

Yes. Exactly. Stove plugs are relatively cheap and they make good connections. Since they are almost always a right angle plug and receptacle, It is easy to wrap a big heavy duty zip tie around the mated connectors to help insure that they will NOT inadvertently come unplugged unexpectedly.

simplicity wrote:
What gauge of cable are you using? Are you using a multi conductor cable say like a 6/4?

Yes, exactly again! 6 AWG, 4 conductor SOOW.

simplicity wrote:
I'd prefer a twist lock type of connecter to avoid or at least reduce accidental unplugging, wouldn't the connectors below work? Except I can't seem to find them available anywhere..


Sure, twist lock connectors are great to use, but I'm not a big fan of the standard Hubble twist lock connectors because the blades on the male ends will often get bent and eventually break off. Also, the electrical industry has not really accepted the NEMA 50A 240V twist lock standard. Instead you should look up the Hubble "California Connector" on the internet. Specific part numbers include:
CS6365 - Male Cord Mount Plug
CS6364 - Female Cord Mount Receptacle
CS6369 - Female Panel Mount Receptacle
CS6375 - Male Panel Mount Plug

These are the typical 50A 240V twist lock connectors that you will find on a larger commercial type generator, so even if you are using the NEMA 14-50 straight blade connectors in your system, you should still have an adapter cable with a CS8265C plug to a NEMA 14-50R receptacle. (I don't currently have one, but I'll probably need to make one up in the near future.) Also, you will note that the contacts on the male connectors are protected from being beaten and bent, unlike the 20A and 30A versions of the standard Hubble Twist-Lock connectors are. These are great connectors, to be sure... but at around or more than $100 each, they had better be!

Good luck out there and be safe! Remember, if you don't understand what you are doing, DON'T DO IT! Advice you receive from people on the internet is usually what you paid for it... NOTHING! Do NOT experiment with electricity, it is a great way to end up DEAD if you don't know what you are doing. DO NOT take any of the discussion above as fact. Check with a licensed electrician familiar with the rules and regulations of your jurisdiction before attempting anything with electricity. Most importantly, I will not be held liable for anything you read on the internet.


Last edited by JoshM on Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 5:27 pm 
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Location: Midwest IL
Im so glad to finally see the tech level of you guys getting this right...I used to build these before Peaveyand other companies ever thought about it, I must have built 200 of these for Walt Disney company and for Auto shows and made many a working distro in the field for TV and Concerts...first rule of thumb with electricity, NO GUESSING...DO NOT ASSUME ANYTHING, AND ALWAYS IF YOUR NOT SURE FIND A REAL ELECTRICIAN TO MAKE SURE ITS RIGHT....

DEATH SUCKS.

Buy a real quality Multimeter and Amp checker...dont buy the 3.99 radio shack job...get a Fluke, Or GE or a quality meter for accuracy especially when reading or testing Amperage.

http://www.fluke.com/fluke/usen/electri ... ?PID=55986

Use these to test existing outlets in clubs etc, NEVER assume its right, make sure its right, the three little lights are self explanatory, any Home depot or Lowes or Ace etc...about 3 bucks

http://www.triplett.com/shop/plug-bug-2/

This little jewel can SNIFF AC current, so if your in a hurry and need to find a dead circuit, there is a version that chases breakers etc..

http://www.triplett.com/shop/sniff-it-2/

and I would invest in NON CONDUCTIVE Screwdrivers and Hex wrenches ....

as said before If your not sure, Hire an electrician, ask the Rental Generator company if they have a setup guy and charge it back to your customer, the last thing you want to do is fry Eric Claptons prize custom built amps OR HIM !!!

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2013 5:43 pm 
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Peaveypro wrote:
Im so glad to finally see the tech level of you guys getting this right...I used to build these before Peaveyand other companies ever thought about it, I must have built 200 of these for Walt Disney company and for Auto shows and made many a working distro in the field for TV and Concerts...first rule of thumb with electricity, NO GUESSING...DO NOT ASSUME ANYTHING, AND ALWAYS IF YOUR NOT SURE FIND A REAL ELECTRICIAN TO MAKE SURE ITS RIGHT....

DEATH SUCKS.

Buy a real quality Multimeter and Amp checker...dont buy the 3.99 radio shack job...get a Fluke, Or GE or a quality meter for accuracy especially when reading or testing Amperage.

http://www.fluke.com/fluke/usen/electri ... ?PID=55986

Use these to test existing outlets in clubs etc, NEVER assume its right, make sure its right, the three little lights are self explanatory, any Home depot or Lowes or Ace etc...about 3 bucks

http://www.triplett.com/shop/plug-bug-2/

This little jewel can SNIFF AC current, so if your in a hurry and need to find a dead circuit, there is a version that chases breakers etc..

http://www.triplett.com/shop/sniff-it-2/

and I would invest in NON CONDUCTIVE Screwdrivers and Hex wrenches ....

as said before If your not sure, Hire an electrician, ask the Rental Generator company if they have a setup guy and charge it back to your customer, the last thing you want to do is fry Eric Claptons prize custom built amps OR HIM !!!


Yes. All this... just yes.

It is VERY important to do it right. Every time.

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Sat Feb 23, 2013 11:16 am 
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thanks guys, great advice, that clears up a few questions I had.

I'm really trying to learn as to what to buy so when I do have one I have the right equipment.

***I do have an electrician hook into power every time and would continue to do the same.***

I'm just tired of having to rent a distro when we do bigger shows and figure I could actually maybe rent this system out as well when others in the area need more reliable power. Ultimately I'd like to have a motionlabs 3 phase 200A distro with camloks available for rent if having a distro proves to be a rentable thing...

Josh, I have looked into the california connectors and have found, as you've suggested, they're more acceptable and "common", but I typically see them on 3 phase systems since they're designed to be used with 3 phase power. I thought it wasn't "allowed" to not use all blades on a connector? The california connector is made for a 5 wire feed, is it ok to only wire it for single phase?

Good point about the adapters too..

I've got my multi-meter but more often I use my circuit detector that identifies separate circuits as well as mis-wired circuits and my voltage tester... But again, that's when I am plugging into existing "house" wiring, not tying in a distro since I don;t do that because as peaveypro says, death sucks and I agree...

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:38 pm 
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simplicity wrote:
Josh, I have looked into the california connectors and have found, as you've suggested, they're more acceptable and "common", but I typically see them on 3 phase systems since they're designed to be used with 3 phase power. I thought it wasn't "allowed" to not use all blades on a connector? The california connector is made for a 5 wire feed, is it ok to only wire it for single phase?


Oh man... would you look at that!!! I made a "minor" error in the original post. The correct identification numbers for the "California Standard" connectors are:
CS6365 - Male Cord Mount Plug
CS6364 - Female Cord Mount Receptacle
CS6369 - Female Panel Mount Receptacle
CS6375 - Male Panel Mount Plug

These are 240 volt single phase 50A connectors. (I have gone back and corrected my original post for the benefit of those who may read this thread in the future.)

Thank you, Allen, for getting me to double check the numbers I was handing out because they were the wrong ones. Now you have the right ones.

This is why it is VERY IMPORTANT to have a qualified electrician look over what you are doing before you actually do it. You want to do it right because as has already been stated in this thread, "Death sucks."

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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 8:10 pm 
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I use the CS style connectors for my power distro (and cam-lock inputs).
http://www.bartmanaudio.com/power.html


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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 3:21 am 
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Bartman, where did you get your distro from. Who made the distro and those rack mount units. Where they expensive . I need a large distro like that to feed each amp rack.


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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 9:46 am 
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jamescg wrote:
Bartman, where did you get your distro from. Who made the distro and those rack mount units. Where they expensive . I need a large distro like that to feed each amp rack.



You can talk to Jim from ampshop.com. He built all my distro equipment and his build quality is excellent. He makes everything you can think of at great prices :)


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 Post subject: Re: Peavey Power Distro
PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 10:12 am 
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ParaProAV wrote:
jamescg wrote:
Bartman, where did you get your distro from. Who made the distro and those rack mount units. Where they expensive . I need a large distro like that to feed each amp rack.



You can talk to Jim from ampshop.com. He built all my distro equipment and his build quality is excellent. He makes everything you can think of at great prices :)


Yep, my main distro is from ampshop.com. The smaller/remote rack mount distros are from Motion Laboratories that I bougt before their prices went through the roof! They are very nice and excellent quality, but way too expensive now. ampshop.com can custom build whatever layout of power connections you want.


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