So when I lop off the 15A 115V plug - I suppose I'll see three wires. Black,
n' white, n' green.
When I attach the NEMA 6-20P plug, he said redundantly, does the black need
to go to one particular blade, or can I choose thanks to the magic of
I ask 'cuz thanks to the magic of the internet, I learned a few years ago
that there was a right way to wire zip cord in a lamp with a polarized
Remember you "identify" the neutral. That is the silver screw, the wide blade
on the plug and the ridged conductor on the zip cord.
The wire will almost always be white except when it is 277v derived from 480v
(used in big building lights) That is grey.
Since we are global these days you may also see line cords from Europe that
have blue and brown. Blue is neutral over there.
Perhaps this confusion arose with the change from the 5-15 (15 amp)/5-20 (20
amp) [125 VAC] to the 6-15 (15 amp)/6-20 (20 amp) [250 VAC] rated plugs.
They ARE different (hmmm ... THAT'S why they have different numbers).
Pictures often tell us more, so here's a quick picture to help you sort
things out (diagram credit McMaster-Carr online catalog ...
The 5-15 and 5-20 plugs conform to the wiring described below, the 6-15 and
6-20 don't, because we're not bringing a neutral line into the plug.
Authoritative answer: "Yes." *grin*
The black wire must go to _one_ of the 'hot' blades -- *which*one* =isa matter of 'your choice'.
then the white wire goes to the "other" 'hot' blade.
And the green goes to the 'safety ground', obviously.
Ayup. That there is. because you're dealing with one 'hot', and one 'neutral',
vs. two 'hot' leads.
'hot' leads are, in general, interchangable -- from a safety standpoint, that
is -- although, in poly-phase circuitry, said interchanging of hot leads
may have an effect on the direction of rotation of any motors involved.
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