220 swiss into canadian 110


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Old 01-31-04, 07:43 AM
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220 swiss into canadian 110

Ok, maybe an easy question but I am a materials guy.

My sisters new hubby is coming over to Canada and wants to know what needs to be done to be able to plug his Swiss 220Volt appliances (stereo, coffee maker, etc) into the 110volt canadian outlets. is it simply a transformer he needs or what? Thanks: e3
 
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Old 01-31-04, 10:02 AM
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Unless the particular appliances are very, very dear to him, he would be best advised to dispose of them in Europe and buy new ones in North America. This reduces the amount of shipping required, reduces the cost of transformers, and is probably the simplest and lowest cost solution. The appliances probably wouldn't work correctly on 60 Hz power anyway, and converting 60 Hz to 50 Hz involves larger, more expensive, and noisier equipment.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 12:27 AM
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All he needs is a 110V to 220V step up transformer(s). Most appliances - anything that does not contain motors or rely on the mains frequency - will work fine. Things like stereos and coffe makers should work fine with the step up. Just need to make sure that the transformers purchased can support the total load of all the appliances.

I would also suggest looking into John's suggestion of getting new appliances if he is going to be living in Canada for an extended time. Some power will be wasted in the transformer as heat and eddy currents in the core. Also if the appliances break support/repair maybe a problem.

Any special items such as high cost audiophile equipement may be worth bringing over given the cost of new similar equipment.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 01:37 AM
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Running a 50hz piece of equipment on 60hz should be no problem. In fact, it should be a bit easier on the equipment. The only 'gottcha' I can think of is the issue of a possible clock in the equipment. My coffee maker, for instance, has a built in timer so I can start my coffee before I plan to get up. That way I have hot coffee ready when I arrive in the kitchen. If the coffee maker in question uses the 60hz for the clock timebase and you have one designed for 50hz you will have a problem with the clock running too fast. It could be that this is a non-issue for a lot of appliances because of a common design for digital clocks using a 38khz (I believe) quartz crystal based clock. Power companies in this country adjust their 60hz frequency very carefully to keep the clock on your wall accurate (assuming you have one that isn't battery operated). You never see a non-battery powered wall clock on a ship because the power frequency isn't nearly accurate enough.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 02:04 AM
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Yes, a very valid point. All appliances running off low voltage (eg stereo) using a standard rectifier and capacitor smoothing arrangement in the power supply - not a switch mode power supply - will actually work better on 60Hz compared to 50Hz - since the ripple will be lower.

For sure don't bring any TVs. This will definitely not work. North America uses the NTSC TV system whereas most of Europe uses PAL/SECAM. FM radios should work but I believe the frequency band is slightly different in the US compared to Europe. Also RDS may not work although I heard some radio stations in the US use it.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 09:05 AM
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As I seem to be painfully reminded every spring and fall, it seems that everything in my house has a clock in it (except my toaster -- at least so far).
 
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Old 02-02-04, 12:24 PM
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I agree. It would be good if they could make all clocks with radio receivesr so that it could be synchronized to the atomic clock signal. This way all clock will tell the correct time and no more going around resetting the clocks twice a year! Don't know why they don't do it - in large quantities the radio receivers will hardly cost much extra.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 12:34 PM
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They do make clocks like that. Radio Shack has them. Very handy!
Andy
 
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Old 02-02-04, 12:53 PM
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Using the atomic clock has it's advantages, such as always having the correct time, but all they really need is a simple toggle switch. One position is standard time, the other is daylight savings time. Moving the switch would add or subtract an hour.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 01:06 PM
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Yes, I know they do make them but I was referring to the clocks built in to the appliances that don't have this feature. The toggle switch idea makes it a bit easier but you still have to go around toggling all the clocks. Having an integrated radio receiver in all clocks will make sure they always tell the correct time and no thinking required when the times switch.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 01:09 PM
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Except that you have to tell the device what time zone you are in and/or if your location recognizes daylight savings time or not.
 
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Old 02-02-04, 01:12 PM
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Should be a one off setup unless you move.
 
 

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