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Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

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SteveSharrow

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Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2014 1:21 am

Location: Florida

Post Wed May 25, 2016 2:29 am

Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

I am trying to figure out what I need to power an Ilco 045HD and a JMA cloner at an outdoor flea market. There is no grid power available so I have to power the machines with an inverter. I'm hoping that some people here have some experience with this and can give me some advice. Do you think I could use my car battery and periodically start my vehicle, or should I get another larger battery?
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tpark

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Location: Alberta, Canada

Post Wed May 25, 2016 4:02 am

Re: Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

I think it would depend on your vehicle. I'd be inclined to get a battery isolator, and have a second battery that I used to power the inverter. If the key cutter draws 2 amps at 120v, your rig is drawing around 20 amps at 12v, possibly a bit more because of system losses. If you have a 100 amp hour battery, that would give you 100/20 or 5 hours of continuous run time. Programmers don't take much power, but you might want to run your cell phone and your point of sale machine. If you can have the vehicle at your stall, great, but some places you have to drag your stuff to the stall.

I don't know if this is true or not, but I've heard that one strategy at flea markets is to have your own, business stamped blanks for common house keys. If copying from a copy, use a generic unmarked blank for the copy, but if you have an original to copy from, use one of your company blanks.
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mdc5150

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Post Wed May 25, 2016 4:30 am

Re: Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

If your key machine is an AC unit a car battery and a power inverter will work. You would need to charge the battery every few weeks.
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Altashot

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Location: Western Canada

Post Wed May 25, 2016 5:40 am

Re: Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

An inverter hooked up to a Deep Cycle marine battery with an isolator is the way to go.
That way, if you run your battery down, it wont draw from your starter battery so your car will still start and it will charge the deep cycle as you drive.
Standard car batteries are not made to be run down and charged again and again, but deep cycle batteries are.
keeping the car running to draw from the alternator will certainly cut into your profit, not to mention the extra strain it may put on the alternator.
The Deep Cycle battery is expensive but will last many years (as long as you don't let it freeze) and will pay itself back.
for the occasional key cut though, up to maybe 20 or 30, your standard car battery should be ok.
of course, it depends on how old it is and what quality it was in the first place.
From experience though, I can tell you that if you find out how many keys IS too many, you will need a boost to start your car, and the next time, it will take even less to kill it...

M.
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WestCoastPicks

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Location: British Columbia, Canada

Post Wed May 25, 2016 6:19 am

Re: Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

You shouldn't use your car battery for the same reason you shouldn't pick your own front door lock for fun.
Also charging a drained battery by running your car for a few minutes is like like plugging your dead cell phone in for 10 secs and expecting it to last you all day. A car takes about an hour and a half to fully charge a low battery If they are both new, and you didn't drain it too much.

V x A = W. How many watt is your cutter? Manual says 220v 1/4 Horse. That's about 500w. An 800w inverter would run it no problem. You could even run a few other things off it. As for how long you'll be able to go on a battery depends on lots of things, mainly the type and size of the battery and the efficiency of your inverter. A good inverter is about %80. so call it 600w

If you are constantly demanding 500w + out of your battery, you're going to want a "deep cycle" type battery. Normal car batteries will most likely not be able to keep up with the demand for very long, you can also damage the battery. Deep cycle type batteries have MUCH more surface area of plates on the inside, more plate surface area = more available amperage. You can read the specs for your battery, ultimatly you're looking for something that won't have a problem running 800w or 65 to 70 Amp at 12v.

From there amp hour ratings are on the battery, and the math is simple. Your average car battery is 70 amp. Be careful not to read the cranking amps, this is only how many amp the battery can push out in the initial crank of your starter (less than a second). You want straight up amperage. Big car batteries are like 90 amp. Deep cycles start at around 110 - 120 amp.

Volts x Amps = Watts

Key cutter = 500w + %20 (loss from inverter) = 600w

70 amp car battery = 70 amp x 12 volt = 840w

Keep in mind that you cannot run a battery right down, most inverters will shut off before it gets too low. You would be lucky to get 600w from your 840w battery.
So your average small car battery will last about an hour of full use. That's one hour of actual motor running time. Deep cycle batteries will let you draw much more before they start to shut down, and are much harder to hurt by drawing fast and low. A Standard 120 Amp deep cycle would probably last 2 hours or more.

If it is outdoor, think of a small cheap genset. You can often get them for under $100, and the smallest one will run your machine.
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SteveSharrow

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Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2014 1:21 am

Location: Florida

Post Thu May 26, 2016 8:51 am

Re: Powering key machine at outdoor flea market.

I picked up an inverter from Harbor Freight and two deep cycle batteries from Walmart. Works like a charm.

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