I have three tools requiring 220 volts. I currently use one extension
cord that I built. I'm tired of switching it from too to tool. Can I
buy these cords or must I make another?
BTW, I searched the web for a few minutes and did not find any place
to buy them. Perhaps, you'll have better luck...
It is easy enough to make. Get a length of flexible cable suitable for your
amperage and length (the cable doesn't know if you are using 120v or 240v)
and a male and female plugs. The hard part will be finding the female part,
but an electrical supply house might have them. However...
Just for fun I did a search and found this
Don't know anything about the company, but the price looks better than
making your own!
Look at the picture carefully, and see if it matches the plug on your
Most 6-20R devices have a dual vertical/horizontal slot so they can
accept either a 6-15P (two horizontal blades) or a 6-20P (one
horizontal, one vertical). The majority of 220V machines come with a
6-15P (15 amp), which more often than not, is plugged into a dual-slot
6-20R on a 20 amp circuit. But, if you buy the 6-20P/6-20R extension
cord shown above, you'll discover it doesn't have the dual slot, and the
6-15P on your unisaw won't fit it. If that's what you've got, you need
the 6-15P/6-15R cord. Just something to be aware of when you order.
A quick guide to Nomenclature:
NEMA: National Electrical Manufacturer Association (not to be confused
with NMEA, the National Marine Electronics Association).
NEMA has standardized names for dozens of power plug shapes and sizes.
This is so when you tell your electrician what kind of outlet to put in,
you can say, "I need a 6-20P", instead of, "you know, that funny looking
thing with three prongs that kind of looks like a regular plug except
that the progs are sideways". It's easier to say, and makes you sound
like you know what you're talking about, which is always a plus when the
guy is trying to decide how much he can probably get away with when
padding your bill.
The common every-day outlet that you've got all over your house is the
5-15R. The 5 series is 110 volts. The -15 says it can carry up to 15
amps, and the R means it's a recepticle (i.e. outlet, aka the gizouta).
The thing that plugs into that is a 5-15P, where the P means plug (aka,
Moderately big stuff like largish window air conditioners, needs 20 amps
at 110 volts. That's a 5-20R for the outlet, and of course a 5-20P for
the plug that goes into it. Physically, it looks very much like the
5-15, except that one of the prongs is flipped around sideways. It's
cleverly designed so that you can build a 5-20R with a dual cross-slot
which will accomodate either a 5-15P or a 5-20P. I've never seen a
5-20R wiring device (i.e. wall outlet) that wasn't built this way, but
apparantly extension cords do come in 20-only versions!
Next up in the power hungry spectrum comes a 220 volt, 15 amp outlet.
the 220 volt gizmos are the 6 series. This is the 6-15R into which fits
a 6-15P. Again, this looks much like the 5-15, except that both prongs
are flipped around sideways.
And finally, there is the 220 volt, 20 amp outlet, the 6-20R and 6-20P.
Again, same basic design, except that you've got one normal up-and-down
prong, and one prong flipped over sideways.
Wait a second. What's he talking about. One normal prong, one prong
flipped over sideways. Isn't that the 5-20? NO! At first glance, the
5-20 and the 6-20 look the same. At second glance too. But stare at
them long enough and you might notice the difference. Maybe not. Maybe
you'll just get confuseder and confuseder.
Ok, so run down to the local borg and grab a 6-20P and try to plug it
into a 5-20R. You'll have an epiphany. If you're really wierd, you'll
have an orgasm, but please try and keep it quiet if you do, the borg is
a family store.
Yes, the 5-20R and the 6-20P both have one up-and-down prong and one
sideways prong (not to mention, of course, that they all have a round
ground pin in addition), but it's the other prong! One's the mirror
image of the other. No, wait, that's not right, the plug is the mirror
image of the recepticle, but if the 5-15R is the mirror image of the
5-20R, then it should fit, but, wait, you turn the plug around and look
at it backwards, so you're looking at the other side of the mirror
image, from the back, and....
Oh heck, that's getting confusing again.
Just trust me. A 6-20P fits into a 6-20R (almost like it was made for
it, which, of course, it was), and a 5-20P fits into a 5-20R, and they
don't fit each other. This is a good thing.
Which of course, brings us right back to why it's so important to have
standard names for these things. Could you imaging telling an
electrician to install "one of those outlets with one prong normal and
one prong flipped around sideways" and then having him ask you, "which
prong did you want sideways?"
Oh, yeah, there's a few zillion other kinds of plugs. -30's are 30 amp
flavors (like for electric ranges and arc welders), and then there's a
whole pantheon of -L (for locking) connectors, for various voltages, and
numbers of phases, etc, etc, etc, but this post is more than long enough
as it is.
And, then of course, the Brits do it their own way :-)
You need 1 metal workbox with cover, 4 romex connectors, and 3
Wire the 3 tools to the box (cut off plugs or run new lines to each)
and then attach these to your current extention cord. Wire all
together and top off with wirenuts. Turn off breaker when you don't
want these tools on.
My $.02 less capital gains = $.004
On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 18:37:44 -0800, Never Enough Money wrote:
My Unisaw is 220v 15 amp. I simply purchased a 12/3 contractor's grade
extension cord and then changed the plugs. Works like a charm.
You could easily make a cord with a duplex or quadplex box to handle 2 or
up to 4 plugs. You have to look at your amp load to determine wire gauge.
If all your toys are 10-15 amps and not running at the same time, you can
easily get buy with a modified 12/3 extension and the multi-outlet box.
When you do this be sure you get a cord connector with the rubber doughnut and
compression nut, not a Romex connector.
The Romex connector is not designed for a cable/cord that flexes and the metal
clamp will cut the cord. Match the doughnut to the cord size. They make several
sizes and styles.
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