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Not an everday question


hex0rz

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Alright, so ever since I volunteered at my local FD, I always have wanted the type of washing machine they had there. As years go on, I finally 'am presented with such an opportunity!

 

My work has switched from doing in-house laundry to contractor. They no longer have a use for the washer and dryer. The two are being sold as a pair for $500!

 

They are both speedqueen brands. The dryer is a large unit. One like you would see at the local laundromat. The washing machine is called an extractor and its a front loader.

 

I mainly want the washer, but given the offer for both, I will be purchasing both. I never thought I could get so giddy about a washer and dryer! :ashamed:

 

The dryer is 110v and uses natural gas. I'm not sure, but if anyone knows, what would be involved in converting it to use propane?

 

The washer; the washer is a different story...

 

Its 220v 3 phase. I felt like a well inflated balloon losing all its air quickly... I got to talking to the maintenance guys on my shift and what I could gather was that ultimately I cant use the machine in residential wiring unless I could find a way to use a convertor to get the single phase into 3.

 

Ultimately, my questions really boil down to:

 

1. Converting the dryer to propane

 

2. Making the washer work on residential.

 

I'm a total newb with electrical and it has always been a weak point. Has anyone dealt with either and what could you guys recommend?

 

I also have the model no. to the washer and 'am having trouble getting any literature on it. Just doing a quick search on google, I'm finding that a converter box can go as cheap as 327.

 

To me, even if I had to spend a few hundred to retrofit these to work, its worth it! These units go for thousands a piece!

 

I could do a single load of laundry in both and be good for the week! LOL!

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The washer would require a frequency drive..  Which aren't cheap.  You are looking at maybe $300.  The frequency drive manipulates the single phase power into 3 phases.  You could always put single phase stuff in the washer but that might cost just as much, plus staying 3 phase is more efficient so you might recoup your losses in power consumption.  

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Anthony, I don't think it's worth the extra effort/ money it's going to take to do this. Why not just use the ones you have till they wear out and then go for some good residential speedgueens by then?

'Speedqueen' is a good name for trucks.

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The washer would require a frequency drive..  Which aren't cheap.  You are looking at maybe $300.  The frequency drive manipulates the single phase power into 3 phases.  You could always put single phase stuff in the washer but that might cost just as much, plus staying 3 phase is more efficient so you might recoup your losses in power consumption.  

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The washer would require a frequency drive..  Which aren't cheap.  You are looking at maybe $300.  The frequency drive manipulates the single phase power into 3 phases.  You could always put single phase stuff in the washer but that might cost just as much, plus staying 3 phase is more efficient so you might recoup your losses in power consumption.  

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I agree with tom..   it's not just the motor that needs  3D  power. Timers,  switches,  water valves...      Phase convertors  will   pretty much chew up the efficiency of  running   3 legged power..  but   still,    the machine as a whole  should make up for it..

 

They DON'T  make em  like that anymore!!        If  you  really need  a  industrial washer,  then  yes!  go for it.

 

Propane conversion  usually is a snap.  gas valves  are  the same,  just  need the correct   'jets'  and  adjust the  air.        If     it's  a  pilot lighted   then  you'll probably need the  right orifice,   and  main burner  too,  or  it  could be simple as   an adjustable   air intake.  (you'll need a  gas man to  verify/do it )

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Anthony, just don't buy any front loaders and you'll be doing better with the residential quality units. That is the word out there anyway.

 

I just can't see doing all the prep/ expense, and then end up with a gas appliance inside the home next to one that may or may not be ignition proof.

 

Our bottom of the line Maytag top loader washer is doing real well for us. It gets all the work. Then the dryer is usually always a front loader, of course but, not one of the new kind. It's the old style and has been great. When replacement time comes it'll be on the cheap  with hopefully getting workhorses again.

Edited by JAG1
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Well fellas, I have made my decision. I had to tell them I had to turn it down.

 

I did quit a bit of research on the subject and found that I would have to go with a rotary convertor. I talked to the manufacturer today and he worked the motor out to be approx. 1.75hp motor. So I would have needed about a 3hp or more converter.

 

What got me the most is he told me that there are some parts that are not made for the unit anymore. So, I'm not going to send myself up the creek without any paddles...

 

It was a good run, big learning curve. But I'm glad I did my research, as usual.

 

Thanks for the input on this, guys'.

 

One day when I get that shop, I'm gonna probably get a residential washer by speedqueen, atleast.

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A bit off subject here but for anyone looking to buy a new washing machine and if you have "dirty" laundry make sure and get a machine with an agitator in it if you want your cloths to come out clean. Wife and bought a new set of LG, shopped and shopped and kept coming back to LG as the best of the best according to numerous sources, one salesman at Sears told us to make sure and get a machine with an agitator if you have fairly dirty cloths.  Wife won the battle and we got one without and of course my cloths have to be pretreated and they still come out dirty a lot of the time even washing them on heavy duty heavy soil settings. 

 

Get one with an agitator!

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A bit off subject here but for anyone looking to buy a new washing machine and if you have "dirty" laundry make sure and get a machine with an agitator in it if you want your cloths to come out clean. Wife and bought a new set of LG, shopped and shopped and kept coming back to LG as the best of the best according to numerous sources, one salesman at Sears told us to make sure and get a machine with an agitator if you have fairly dirty cloths.  Wife won the battle and we got one without and of course my cloths have to be pretreated and they still come out dirty a lot of the time even washing them on heavy duty heavy soil settings. 

 

Get one with an agitator!

Does your drum not have fins on the outside? The drum does the agitating on a front loader, therefore an agitator as you know in a top loader is not necessary. If you actually watch the movement of your clothes in a top loader with an agitator, I don't believe it's accomplishing anything that a front loader does by repeatedly "tumbling" the load in each direction. We've gotten about 7 trouble free years out of our Frigidaire affinity elite. You couldn't give me a top loader after having a front loader for so long, but that's just personal preference.

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