Best receptacle for plugging in Italian commercial lever machine to US 240V power supply?

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[creative nickname]

Postby [creative nickname] » Feb 13, 2019, 11:16 pm

We recently purchased a new house and we are remodeling the kitchen. At the same time I have purchased a Bezzera B3000AL 1-group commercial lever machine. We have had the electrician wire in a 230V, 50Hz line from our main breaker to supply the machine with power. The machine has a 2-prong plug on the end of its cord with rounded prongs.

Our electrician is extremely reluctant to give any actual guidance on finishing this installation. After routing the wires, he asked me which receptacle he should put in the wall, which I find rather frustrating as I hired him to be the expert and make sure everything would be set up properly so I could use the machine. My question for forum members who have done this sort of thing before: Is it possible/desirable to purchase a euro-style receptacle so that the machine can just be plugged straight into the wall? Or is it better to get a US-style receptacle (from my initial reading I would think NEMA 6-20, but let me know if that is off-base), and then just buy an adaptor to convert from the 2-prong euro plug to the NEMA receptacle?

Mainly I want to make sure that the way the receptacle is wired wouldn't be incompatible with the power demands of the new machine.
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mrjag

Postby mrjag » Feb 14, 2019, 1:16 am

I'm not an electrician, but I don't think they can install a euro style receptacle in the US without breaking local electrical code. By the books, have them install the proper US-style (NEMA) receptacle and re-terminate the plug with the appropriate male NEMA prong arrangement. You might need to have the electrician chat with the master electrician since your requirements are atypical.

Davi-L

Postby Davi-L » Feb 14, 2019, 10:42 am

I would assume that you are in the US and the power there is 240V, 60 Hz. I assume the 50 Hz is just what comes from Europe. Shouldn't be a concern unless you have a clock device in the machine. It will run fast then.
I would suggest you source an approved line cord with the power rating you need, 15 or 20 amps at 240 volts. You could cut it shorter to suit your counter space and terminate inside the espresso machine, with a ground wire as well. They are so much safer than a 2 prong.
The plug on the line cord will tell you what style of 240V receptacle to purchase. They are found at industrial electrical stores, not Home Depot.
Forget the Euro plug, too confusing, they can stay on that side of the ocean.

Dave

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redbone

Postby redbone » Feb 14, 2019, 11:24 am

mrjag wrote:I'm not an electrician, but I don't think they can install a euro style receptacle in the US without breaking local electrical code. By the books, have them install the proper US-style (NEMA) receptacle and re-terminate the plug with the appropriate male NEMA prong arrangement. You might need to have the electrician chat with the master electrician since your requirements are atypical.


+1

Check with local code I would use proper receptacle and plug in order to adhere to code and not subvent insurance coverage. Depending on amperage 15 amp NEMA 6-15 vs (locking) L6-15 if 20 amp last two digits indicate amperage so NEMA 6-20 vs L6-20. Dave makes good point regarding Hz and clock speed.
Between order and chaos there is espresso.
Semper discens.


Rob
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[creative nickname]

Postby [creative nickname] » Feb 14, 2019, 12:57 pm

Thanks everyone for the help so far! I had liked the idea of the Euro plug mainly because I could then easily use small antique home machines from Italy without the need for rewiring anything. And it would let me skip rewiring the plug, and keep more of the machine in original condition. But given the code issues, I suppose I can just source a plug converter for use with vintage home levers.

I'm not worried about the hertz, as there is nothing more complex in this machine than an auto-fill circuit and a pressurestat. They had asked what power I wanted and I told them 50 hertz just by looking up specs, but reading more it sounds like that would be very hard to arrange and would not produce any real benefit.

Dave, if I am reading right, your solution would involve there being no plug at all, just a hardwired connection from the machine to the wall? My only concern is that this might complicate uninstalling the machine if I want to replace it with something else down the road. I'm not anxious to do so any time soon, as I'm excited to see what this one can do, but given my history with coffee gear I have to admit that buying something else is pretty likely over the next ten years.

And does everyone agree that if I do go with a plug and receptacle, a NEMA 6-20 is the way to go? We have 20 amps to this outlet, mainly to ensure it will be rated for the future if I ever upgrade to a 2-group commercial machine.
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Nunas

Postby Nunas » Feb 14, 2019, 1:27 pm

And does everyone agree that if I do go with a plug and receptacle, a NEMA 6-20 is the way to go?

Yes, this is the correct plug/socket for 240-Volt 20-Ampere service. Do not confuse with 5-20 which looks similar (mirror image) but is for 120-volt 20-Ampere service. There are other suitable receptacles, but the 6-20 is the appropriate one for appliances. By other, I mean there are some that supply both 120 and 240 Volts, those that are twist-lock, and so on. I can think of no logical reason to install one of these for your stated use. You should not install a socket that is intended for use outside of Canada/USA. This means that you will have to replace the cord or put a converter (either cord type or block type) between the receptacle and your European plug. I'm not an electrician; I'm a retired electronics engineering technologist with lots of experience wiring things properly.

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[creative nickname]

Postby [creative nickname] » Feb 14, 2019, 1:35 pm

Has anyone found an in-line converter they would recommend to go from Euro plugs to 6-20? I have googled around but it can be hard to tell what will be reliable and safe in this application.
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Nunas

Postby Nunas » Feb 14, 2019, 4:38 pm

I've always made up my own, but if you're looking to buy an approved device (which you should do), try here http://www.internationalconfig.com/ Since you're going 240-Volt, the selection is way more sparse than those for the 5-20 (120-Volt).

Davi-L

Postby Davi-L » Feb 14, 2019, 9:35 pm

To creative nickname,

What I mean by a 'line cord 'is that black plastic cord that comes out of your appliances or electric drill. It is securely fastened to the appliance/tool and plugs into an approved American style wall socket. In your case, not so common socket in coffee corners. It can be unplugged at will and for appliance service. There are models with a 90 degree cord angle so that your cable doesn't hang out all over the counter. It come approved for use in North America. But watch out for off-shore knock-offs. I suspect they lie about their credentials.
You do not need a root-lock power cord fitting. Those are reserved for movie shoots in the streets. and cost more dollars, and are big and ugly.
A power converter will give you a new and big can of worms to deal with. Avoid it.

Dave

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[creative nickname]

Postby [creative nickname] » replying to Davi-L » Feb 15, 2019, 12:02 am

Thanks, that is all much clearer!
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