From fine woodworking, you have a few options for running 3 phase equipment when your power lines are single phase. Here's a brief summary:
- If the manufacturer is still in business, see if they have a single phase motor you can purchase
- Purchase a phase converter. This may be static, rotary, or electronic. (Also see the note about Variable Frequency Drives)
static Reduces available horsepower by approximately 1/3, will have difficulty with heavy starting loads. Not recommended for compressors, band saws, dust collection. This can be offset by having a lower power machine idling constantly, but that seems like a huge waste of energy to me.
rotary Essentially uses the incoming single phase to drive a single phase motor which actually generates a three phase output. Doesn't suffer from the static converter's reduced power problem, but they're not cheap. Here is a guide for selecting a rotary phase converter for your load.
Additionally, Kay Industries provides a handy reference for deciding if you need a static or rotary converter. Even if you decide you don't want to use their equipment, it may be useful in making your decision. As an aside, this is a big noisy machine(because a wood shop doesn't have any of those in it normally.)
electronic Commonly and more correctly referred to as an inverter. Converts the signal to DC then creates 3 signals 120 degrees out of phase with eachother, creating a digital 3 phase output. May actually be better than an actual 3 phase power line due to additional control, such as direction and gradual power increase. The article lists bandsaws and lathes as examples of where this would be beneficial (e.g. reversing the rotation of the lathe by reversing your converter's direction). Typically dedicated to a single machine; though, it may be possible to run on multiple machines. Phase Perfect seems to be the go-to for these devices. There is some discussion of them here.
VFD Another option not mentioned in the article but that seems to be cropping up on a lot of articles is a Variable Frequency Drive (VFD). These are very efficient and have the added bonus of being able to directly control the speed of a motor. With that said, aside from certain tools like a lathe, drill press, and band saw, I don't think a VFD is the practical choice; it would be a tool-specific sort of thing.
With all this in mind, I think it's probably best to consult the manufacturer/suppliers. Get their take on it (and their take on their competitors. Make them fight eachother, it's fun) once you've decided which type you want, work with them to determine your power needs, and follow instructions on setting up your converter to prevent damage to your equipment or the converter itself via feedback.
Here are some suppliers, shamelessly stolen by the web site linked above. They note that of those listed, only Grainger sells inverters, though frankly I couldn't find any on their site, you may have to do a littel digging:
MSC Industrial Supply Co.