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Onan LT II Transfer Switch JB 7.5

JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

I thought about that. But in all my years with Onan. I have never seen the remote test switch used. Even at places where they were supposed to have one.
Interesting.... Billy, Why would anyone want or require a remote test switch when there is a switch for test inside the box? Is the test switch function used a lot by techs during maintenance since they would be the only ones using it? Would it be a good practice as an installer /tech to install a test switch? Where would the remote test switch normally be mounted? Sorry for all the questions, but that missing little jumper kicked my azzzzzz until I read the schematics and went over each circuit.

I won't be able to get answers or any history that I don't already know from the Onan dealer where the JB and transfer switch was purchased from even though I have their records on their company letterhead. Their phone number now belongs to a Target store and nothing found on the internet. I assume the dealer has been long out of business and the JB /LT II was decommissioned long ago too and put into storage until I bought it last January.

JohnnyC
New Jersey
 
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JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Billy, after my last posting I decided to read at the LT II Operator's Manual while riding the porcelain pony (the place I do my best reading). I found a section where is mentions terminals 11 and 12 on the control lug strip. The manual states this is where the remote test switch would be wired into, which we already know, OR where Remote Area Protection Equipment. QUESTION: What do they mean by remote area equipment? An optional array of something? (See a picture of the section from the manual below).

Sorry for all the questions, but Grasshopper wants to learn.

Thanks,
JohnnyC
New Jersey
 

Attachments

Billy J Shafer

Subscriber
Age
69
Last Subscription Date
09/03/2019
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

The remote test switch would be used at control centers. Say the control center was on the 20th floor transfer switch was in the basement. Instead of walking all that way. Reach over and flip the switch.

The area protection would be used. If you had a part of a plant that needed protection. You would wire in a power monitor relay system. If the plant was getting good power. But the section with the protection was not. The transfer switch would not know it. So a protection switch was used that would tell the system to come on. It did take some extra wiring on some jobs. I did see one system work at one store. I have a control box from the system at the old Marlin Texas hospital.

What was the dealers name
 

Steve Dawkins

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/04/2016
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Years ago, we installed a JC and ats at six remote microwave repeater sites throughout North & South Carolina. The sites were for Carolina Power & Light. I never thought about a remote test feature for a genset, but those sites would have been a perfect application. A signal could be sent via telemetry to a site, closing a relay contact, and testing the generator and ats without having to visit the site.
 

Billy J Shafer

Subscriber
Age
69
Last Subscription Date
09/03/2019
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Steve you might enjoy this one. When I worked for Cat. We built up some Lister for NASA tracking stations. We heard this from the NASA man in charge of the project.

Some of the stations were having trouble. Starting a all different times in the day. Mostly morning and evening. He went to one site found nothing. While making out the report. The generator started.Looked outside and found monkeys. Making beds for the night. Some how they were messing with the sat signal. Ended up putting screens on top.
 

Steve Dawkins

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/04/2016
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Billy, that's a hoot. Who would have ever guessed such a problem.

On the project for CP&L, the 6 locations we did completed a loop of these sites throughout the Carolinas. This was back in the late 70s or early 80s, I don't remember which. Each site consisted of a 8'x8'x16' stainless steel comm building, a 300' tall microwave tower, and a JC generator. At the time, the sole purpose of each site was to support a wall telephone, identical to what would be in your house. It was for CP&L techs to be able to communicate from remote locations. Certainly this was much cheaper than putting a few coins in a pay phone at the time! I think the ultimate goal was for the power company to be able to remotely operate their electrical substations.

Most of these sites were in very rural areas. One site we were at, the CP&L rep told us he was waiting to visit a site someday and see skid marks in the farm field from where the generator had been dragged off with a tractor. At another site, while we were doing start up, there was a swarm of bees clustered around the tower. The swarm would travel from the top of the tower down to about 4 feet above ground, and then back up the tower again. Strange phenomenon. They looked like a dark cloud that constantly moved. The generator was about 5 feet from the base of the tower. While we were prepping the gen for startup, we kept a close watch on the bees, and backed away when they got down to about 15' above ground. Once they hit bottom and headed back up the tower, we would resume our duties.
 

Billy J Shafer

Subscriber
Age
69
Last Subscription Date
09/03/2019
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

In Texas we had microwave towers every thirty miles. If nothing went wrong you could get five services done in one day. The one I hated the most.Was at Brownwood Texas. You had to put on rain gear run to the generator and not look up. It was a nesting area for buzzerds:rant::rant::rant:
 

Steve Dawkins

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/04/2016
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Yes, I remember 30 miles. They said that microwave communication was good for about 30 miles. By the time we got involved, they had built these microwave relay stations every 30 miles throughout the Carolinas. If you looked at a map of the sites, it formed a "C". The six sites we were involved with closed the C to make a complete loop.

All things considered, I guess bees would be better than buzzards. I guess you didn't stand still too long at that site, for fear that the buzzards might think you were dinner.
 

JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

---- snip ----
What was the dealers name
Billy, thanks for the information.

I found two company names but the primary name I found on the switch, JB and all the documentation is Keystone Onan Power, Inc. The business card for this company, had name - Renny Picchini. The phone number for Keystone Onan Power now belongs to a Target store in the same city (Harrisburg, Pa). I called the number and asked the Target store customer service person how long was Target in Harrisburg been in business. The person responded that she worked there 5 years and the Target store was already there at the beginning of her employment, but she does not know exactly when the store was built. The second name found on the ATS is Cummings Power Systems, Inc. I called the Harrisburg number for this company. I got a recording that repeated "No routes found". The other phone numbers for other branch offices seem to be valid, but were closed today.

The JB and ATS were bought in Harrisburg Pa, and installed in a school located in Harrisburg, Pa according to my documentation. The serial numbers on the ATS and JB show a 1 month difference for production, so I am very confident they were installed as a pair. It's function was to power a lighting system during power failures.

JohnnyC
New Jersey
 

Attachments

ATSman

Registered
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Thanks for all the info on this post. Came late to this thread.
This stuff is right up my ally and did learn some things about this model
Onan ATS.
Can someone post the schematic/ wiring diagram and manual for this LT II model? I have the OT I & OTII but not this one.
BTW I have a pretty good library of the old Zenith, ASCO, Russelectric, Kohler, etc dwgs & manuals if someone is interested.
 

JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

It has been awhile since I posted about my LTII ATS and the 7.5 JB combination.

Just to bring you up to date, I got my ATS working perfectly on my "garage work bench" and adapted a Gencon controller to it for monitoring it's functions however in reality the ATS really serves no purpose to me since I have a 2 family house (with 3 families inside) with two separate 200 amp services. I do not see a way to reasonably incorporate 1 transfer switch to run basic functions such as fridges, heat and basic lighting of a multi service house. I can easily wire it into my utility power, but when the ATS is in standby mode someone will be paying for the other's power from the utility as the utility power output from the ATS will be shared to all in the house when in standby. I'm not sure if I am making myself too clear.

So, the question is ---->> How can I incorporate a single ATS into a multi service house for some of the basic circuits that would be needed during an extended outage?

During Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Irene I had my old Westinghouse in my garage running without an ATS. Each family got a 15 amp extension cord line which was routed from the outside and through their window. Each family was able to plug their fridge, a lamp and TV into their line. Each tenant was instructed to run the least amount of electrical devices as possible. During those days, my third floor tenant's 16 year old daughter had to look "pretty" and was using her hair dryer and curling iron which at time bogged down my old generator:mad:.

Anyway, looking for ideas to incorporating my ATS into my house with separate services.

JohnnyC
New Jersey
 

Steve Dawkins

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/04/2016
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

So, the question is ---->> How can I incorporate a single ATS into a multi service house for some of the basic circuits that would be needed during an extended outage?
The short answer is...you can't, without some creative wiring and code violations. Besides, your transfer switch is only rated at 30 amps, so you will be limited as to what you can do with it.

I know you would really like to incorporate this transfer switch into your electric service. You can do that for the service that feeds your portion of the house. You will need to install a 30 amp, 2 pole breaker in your existing panel to feed the ATS, and install a small panel (4-6 circuits) that is fed from the ATS. Then you will need to relocate the circuits you want on emergency power to this panel. The reason I say you will need a 4-6 circuit panel is so you don't overload the ATS contact ratings. If you install two 15 amp (emergency circuit) breakers on each line of the transfer switch, that will equal the rating of the ATS contacts. Since the actual load will be less than the branch circuit breaker rating, you can increase the number of breakers, but you don't want to over-do it. Bear in mind that all the current of your emergency circuits will have to pass through the 30 amp, 2 pole breaker that feeds the ATS, so that will be your choke point when operating on utility power.

If you want to provide your tenants with some emergency power, a manual transfer switch similar to the these will work. http://reliancecontrols.com/indoor-pro-tran.aspx These devices have multiple switches that are designed to easily connect to individual branch circuits. They are limited to 20 amp circuits max, but that should be fine for lighting circuits, refrigerator and 120 volt furnace or boiler circuits. You will only need to run one cable from your generator or breakout box to the transfer switch. It won't be automatic, but it will take minimum time to set up for emergency power and transfer the loads.

Not knowing where the services are located at your dwelling and the availability of wall space, you may need to locate some of this equipment outdoors. The manual switches are available in indoor and outdoor enclosures. You can also buy them without the generator inlet plugs, and install the inlet plug remotely from the manual transfer switch. This is helpful if you install the switch indoors and the inlet plug outdoors. It will prevent having to leave an exterior door open for the generator cord to pass through.

Unless you are planning to permanently install your JB, I don't see much benefit to installing the automatic transfer switch other than retransferring to utility power, once it is restored.
 

Leon N.

Registered
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Here is something to think about wrt your question: How can I incorporate a single ATS into a multi service house for some of the basic circuits that would be needed during an extended outage?

The following suggestion is just food for thought.

#1 When power goes out, both 200 amp feeders go dead.

#2 Sounds like you want critical branch circuits attached to the standby JB via a transfer switch and you are willing to foot the bill, i.e. provide free power to your tenants fridge, heater etc.

#3 Those critical branch circuits each will need a "smart box" for lack of a better term which contains a hold-in relay which disconnects only those circuits critical circuits from there respective 200 amp feeder when the power fails.

#4 In each of those tenants smart boxes, there needs to be a feed to your JB 30 amp transfer switch which will pick up those critical loads and no other loads.

#5 Now can this be made code compliant? I would think so, but I am not sure.

#6 Who is going to pay for this rework? If it was me, I would investigate doing it myself and get it inspected and signed off by the local electrical inspector.

Just some early thoughts that came to my mind. What do you think? I like the question, JohnnyC!
 

JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

The short answer is...you can't, without some creative wiring and code violations. Besides, your transfer switch is only rated at 30 amps, so you will be limited as to what you can do with it.

My exact thoughts too and since others live in the house, it must be code compliant.

I know you would really like to incorporate this transfer switch into your electric service. You can do that for the service that feeds your portion of the house. If I just do my part of the house leaving the tenants in the dark, I think collecting the rent for the following month may be a problem.

You will need to install a 30 amp, 2 pole breaker in your existing panel to feed the ATS, and install a small panel (4-6 circuits) that is fed from the ATS. Then you will need to relocate the circuits you want on emergency power to this panel. The reason I say you will need a 4-6 circuit panel is so you don't overload the ATS contact ratings. If you install two 15 amp (emergency circuit) breakers on each line of the transfer switch, that will equal the rating of the ATS contacts. Since the actual load will be less than the branch circuit breaker rating, you can increase the number of breakers, but you don't want to over-do it. Bear in mind that all the current of your emergency circuits will have to pass through the 30 amp, 2 pole breaker that feeds the ATS, so that will be your choke point when operating on utility power.

If you want to provide your tenants with some emergency power, a manual transfer switch similar to the these will work. http://reliancecontrols.com/indoor-pro-tran.aspx These devices have multiple switches that are designed to easily connect to individual branch circuits. They are limited to 20 amp circuits max, but that should be fine for lighting circuits, refrigerator and 120 volt furnace or boiler circuits. You will only need to run one cable from your generator or breakout box to the transfer switch. It won't be automatic, but it will take minimum time to set up for emergency power and transfer the loads. I like your idea. Something for me to look into.

Not knowing where the services are located at your dwelling and the availability of wall space, you may need to locate some of this equipment outdoors. The manual switches are available in indoor and outdoor enclosures. You can also buy them without the generator inlet plugs, and install the inlet plug remotely from the manual transfer switch. This is helpful if you install the switch indoors and the inlet plug outdoors. It will prevent having to leave an exterior door open for the generator cord to pass through. I already have the access hole in the side of the house already taken care of. I use a decoy dryer wall vent that actually works for routing things through the exterior wall up to 4 inches.

Unless you are planning to permanently install your JB, I don't see much benefit to installing the automatic transfer switch other than retransferring to utility power, once it is restored.
Thanks Steve for your input. Good food for thought.

JohnnyC
New Jersey


Here is something to think about wrt your question: How can I incorporate a single ATS into a multi service house for some of the basic circuits that would be needed during an extended outage?

The following suggestion is just food for thought.

#1 When power goes out, both 200 amp feeders go dead. That is correct. Both are dead from the utility side

#2 Sounds like you want critical branch circuits attached to the standby JB via a transfer switch and you are willing to foot the bill, i.e. provide free power to your tenants fridge, heater etc. Critical branch circuits is the goal, but I don't want to foot the bill for utility power for my tenants when the ATS is in standby and the branch circuits are being fed by the utility

#3 Those critical branch circuits each will need a "smart box" for lack of a better term which contains a hold-in relay which disconnects only those circuits critical circuits from there respective 200 amp feeder when the power fails.

#4 In each of those tenants smart boxes, there needs to be a feed to your JB 30 amp transfer switch which will pick up those critical loads and no other loads.

#5 Now can this be made code compliant? I would think so, but I am not sure. All would need to be code compliant for anything permanent. It would be too much of a liability if something goes wrong and people die and the cause goes back to non-compliant add-ons.

#6 Who is going to pay for this rework? If it was me, I would investigate doing it myself and get it inspected and signed off by the local electrical inspector. I , and only I do all my own work. The house was made in 1924. When I bought it in 2001 it was wired with knob and tube as well as BX from the 1940's. There was actually 3 electrical services, but the house is only a legal 2 family so I had to rewire it as a duplex with 2 services. The permit was pulled by a former neighbor that is a licensed electrical contractor, but all wiring was done by me and inspected. In the late 1970's I worked for a licensed electrical contractor and went to school for it back in those days. Electrical wiring for me is not a problem and I trust no one else but myself to do the job. I guess I followed those foot steps when I restored all my Onans too.

Just some early thoughts that came to my mind. What do you think? I like the question, JohnnyC!
Thanks Leon for your input.

JohnnyC
New Jersey
 

Leon N.

Registered
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

I need to clarify my comment #2 and #3.

#2: No JohnnyC, you would ONLY have to pay for the juice you provide during an outage, that is the fuel to run the generator. Should not be very much even if it is an extend d outage. See comment #3.

#3: What I envisioned as a smart box is very simply a small bud box with three romex connectors. Inside, you mount one single-pole double-throw contactor. The normally closed (deactivated) contactor is always supplying utility power, 120 VAC to for example, the fridge. The normally open contactor is connected to the 120 VAC from your JB.

When the lights go out, your JB provides 120 VAC to this relay coil, opens the utility side and closes the JB side and Wha La, your tenant has his fridge powered. You are only messing with the "120 VAC black wire" in this specific branch circuit.

Yes, it sounds a bit crazy, for example, one must check that no other loads are on the fridge circuit. So you would have to do some homework.

Technically, I am sure this scheme would work safely. Would like to know what rule is being violated?
 

JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

I need to clarify my comment #2 and #3.

#2: No JohnnyC, you would ONLY have to pay for the juice you provide during an outage, that is the fuel to run the generator. Should not be very much even if it is an extend d outage. See comment #3.

#3: What I envisioned as a smart box is very simply a small bud box with three romex connectors. Inside, you mount one single-pole double-throw contactor. The normally closed (deactivated) contactor is always supplying utility power, 120 VAC to for example, the fridge. The normally open contactor is connected to the 120 VAC from your JB.

When the lights go out, your JB provides 120 VAC to this relay coil, opens the utility side and closes the JB side and Wha La, your tenant has his fridge powered. You are only messing with the "120 VAC black wire" in this specific branch circuit.

Yes, it sounds a bit crazy, for example, one must check that no other loads are on the fridge circuit. So you would have to do some homework.

Technically, I am sure this scheme would work safely. Would like to know what rule is being violated?
Leon, I understand your idea but hesitant to implement it. I don't know what code(s), if any, it violates, but I'd hate to find out if something should go wrong such as an electrical fire or death. Maybe my best bet is to have two JBs and ATS boxes on standby that are hooked up independently of each other for each service. Actually, my 6.5 NH may be a suitable 2nd generator for the 2nd service at my house and LT ATS boxes pop up on CL frequently at reasonable prices. The easiest solution is to just throw each resident a 15 amp line from the generator and let them plug into it what ever they want as I did in the past. I don't know :confused: what I should do :shrug:

JohnnyC
New Jersey

*** Update - After posting the above response and mentioning the idea of running 2 separate generators and ATS and how frequently LT series ATS's appear on CL, I found one at a decent price. It is the 100 amp version, but does not have several of the time delay relays that would be desirable however it will work. The seller wants $100 and has been posted for a month. I'm sure he would take $50-$75 CASH to see it gone. The seller is located about 1.5 hours away from me.

https://longisland.craigslist.org/ele/d/onan-automatic-transfer-switch/6285610928.html
 
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JohnnyC

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
03/18/2020
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

ATS Question for the gurus

What is the difference between a 30 amp version and 100 amp LTEU 100L ATS other than what I circled in the picture below? I got the exact 30 amp version and it looks 100% identical as far as I can see other than what I point out in the picture. The attached picture is from an ATS for sale on CL that drew my interest this morning (see my previous posting for details)

JohnnyC
New Jersey
 

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Leon N.

Registered
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

JohnnyC, yes, you have a predicament that can be an embarrassing situation where by you but not your tenants have power.

Re your comment: "The easiest solution is to just throw each resident a 15 amp line from the generator and let them plug into it what ever they want as I did in the past. ---".

That is exactly what I did during the Blizzard of '78 when our neighborhood lost power for 12 days in the dead of Winter. I used two 250 foot rolls of Romex 12-2 WG and provided 120 volts to my adjacent neighbors so they could run their furnaces and fridge. That worked out very nicely. Of course I told them no heavy loads like toasters, irons etc. That would be the quickest and cheapest approach.

What I did back in '78 I would not do today. Different neighbors, very young, not so friendly, never around. Times sure have changed.

BTW, if I am not mistaken, you mentioned 200 amp service. Then the associated ATS must have a 200 amp breaker on the line(utility) side. Is that correct?
 

Wayne 440

Registered
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

...The easiest solution is to just throw each resident a 15 amp line from the generator and let them plug into it what ever they want as I did in the past. I don't know :confused: what I should do :shrug: ...
My advice - (I'm presuming that you are the landlord here) the "easiest solution" is to elect not to take ownership of the utility's obligation to provide electricity.

IF you want to make a "good neighbor" gesture, install few easily accessible weatherproof-in-use outlets (perhaps on your garage outside wall or ??, NOT in the tenant's premises) that are only energized when your standby power is. If your tenant wants to string his/her own cord over to it during an outage, fine. If not, that's OK too.
 

Leon N.

Registered
Re: Onan LT II Transfer Switch / JB 7.5

Wayne, I like your ideas. The utility's obligation is tenant specific assuming each tenant pays their own electric bills. I still feel somewhat queezy when I have lights and my neighbors do not. I cannot run wires across the street. As for my adjacent neighbors, well like I said earlier.
 
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