How to use a Variac with your electrolisis tank

Easy ways to clean parts, remove broken bolts, etc.

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How to use a Variac with your electrolisis tank

Postby Alan Riley » Fri Jun 22, 2007 10:50 pm

Ok, lets see if I can figure this out...

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This is a view of the tank in operation with a Cub fender in it. The tank is a 55 gallon plastic one with the top cut out. The anodes are 5/8 in (#5) rebar 36 in long. The clips used are Mueller #25's rated at 40 amps. The wires are #10. The connections are made to a pair of 1/4-20 stainless bolts in the upper lip of the tank. The Mueller clips used seem to have a bit more "bite" than the typical battery charger clips and have made reliable connections so far.

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Here is a shot of the complete setup using a Variac to control the voltage to the battery charger. By changing the Variac setting, I can maintain a set current output from the battery charger independent of the area of the part being cleaned and by bringing up the Variac output slowly after putting in a part, I can check for a shorted condition inside the tank without damaging anything. The fan keeps the charger temperature under control.

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Here's a shot showing 4 amps of current out from the charger with roughly 60 volts into the charger. Using the Variac protects the charger from attempting to put out more than it's rated current.
Alan Riley
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