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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 220 50 amp circuit in my shop for welding which I will use for my 220 bandsaw. Is there any reason not to make a 220 extension cord that would make it easier to change out plugs?

Maybe a gang box with a couple of plugs? I wouldn't be running two tools at a time, but the convenience would be great.

I'm sure someone here has done that so would you give me some tips?

Thanks.

Steve
 

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As long as you use wire capable of handling 50 amps, then no problem.
That’s the first thing that I thought .

The wire in the extension cord would have to be rated for 50 amps as you mention, otherwise if a short occurred ,the breaker wouldn’t trip
 

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I just did exactly what you want to do. I added a 20 amp plug wired from my welder plug. I only used 12 gauge wire and it's not a great idea but it's for my planer and I'll be standing next to it the whole time it's running so I think I can manage the risk. The best way to do what you suggest is to take the wire from the welder plug and run it into a sub panel. Some sub panels allow you to run a wire out that is direct and not fused. That could allow you to hook up to the welder again without going through another breaker other than the the one in the main panel. That would allow a 30 amp sub panel which could be used for the tools you want to run as none of them should be greater than 20 amps. That should be code compliant I think.
 

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That’s the first thing that I thought .

The wire in the extension cord would have to be rated for 50 amps as you mention, otherwise if a short occurred ,the breaker wouldn’t trip
More to the point, the equipment at the business end is going to be seriously shortchanged on the voltage it needs to operate; expect the cable to get really hot and self destruct if the equipment is operating at near the rating of the breaker. #6-3 wire/grd...
https://www.ebay.com/itm/50-6-3-SOO...oor-Durable-Flexible-Wire-Cable-/273520619202
 

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Good thread. What is the maximum length for such a cord? We are talking about a few feet here but curious. I know that regular cords have a limit before a voltage drop.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
More to the point, the equipment at the business end is going to be seriously shortchanged on the voltage it needs to operate; expect the cable to get really hot and self destruct if the equipment is operating at near the rating of the breaker. #6-3 wire/grd...
https://www.ebay.com/itm/50-6-3-SOO...oor-Durable-Flexible-Wire-Cable-/273520619202
I'm not sure I understand so let me state what I have. It's a 50 amp breaker with a 220 outlet using an old welder outlet.


I've ordered a plug (50 amp) that matches the outlet receptacle.


Now I need the wire and outlet receptacle (or receptacles) at the other end of the extension cord to plug in my 220 tools.

I see 25' welding extension cords on Amazon with 8 ga. wire, but of course, the plugs don't have the older style of my 220 receptacle.

I was hoping to get a 20-25' extension cord to be able to go outside my shop and work with a future planer or lathe.

Are you saying that if I plug a tool into an extension cord of 8 ga.wire that I could damage my tool?

Sorry, but electrical situations are not my area of expertise, so your help is appreciated. Pretend I know nothing about this situation so explain in simple terms.:laugh2:

Thanks.
Steve
 

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In simple terms as long as the extension cord is rated for 50 amps your equipment will be fine. I made a 10' and a 25' cord for my shop also. I have welders, and plasma cutter that I use all over.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
In simple terms as long as the extension cord is rated for 50 amps your equipment will be fine. I made a 10' and a 25' cord for my shop also. I have welders, and plasma cutter that I use all over.
Being the electrical simpleton that I am, I've got it! Thanks
 
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The heavy gauge extension cord is an option. The code guide I use says that if a run is longer than 75 feet it's a good idea to go up one wire size. Although your welder plug is a 50 amp it is likely being fed with a 40 amp breaker. I've never figured out or heard a reason for this discrepancy. Truthfully I can't ever remember seeing a 50 amp breaker. Wire size for 40 amps is #8. If you have longer than 75 feet of total run you might consider going to #6 IF you intended to pull full load at the total distance. But the largest load you are likely to pull with a power tool that is portable enough to wheel out on your drive way is going to be 20 amps which would only require 12 gauge or on a really long run 10 gauge which is normally good for 30 amps. So an 8 gauge extension cord would be ample for any load you are going to put on it. As for adapting to different ends I wouldn't bother. I would just put the same end on the cord to all your tools, i.e. a 20 amp if that is the largest single load.
 
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Pretty sure you don't want to run your equipment off a 50A or even a 40A breaker. For starters all the downstream components need to be sized for the size of the breaker. The issue being that an issue with a 15A tool won't trip the massively oversized breaker, no matter what the size of the cable. An actual short probably would pop it, but I don't think you want to be part of the cct. if that happens!.
50A at 220 v is going to be a memorable experience...if you actually survive it.
You need to have a short run of #6 into a 2pole mini panel with a 2 pole 15 or 20A breaker, then you can wire in a couple of duplex receptacles. Each leg of the 220V cct would feed a separate receptacle.
As I mentioned earlier you need 3wire plus ground #6 cable if it's a 50A cct. The third wire is White and will be the Neutral for either side of your two 120Vccts. In theory you shouldn't be using 220Vand 120V plugs on the same cct. as the load can theoretically be unbalanced. Maybe somebody can explain itbetter(?)

Red.......Phase 1. 120V
Black.....Phase 2. 120V
White....Neutral...return wire for the 120v ccts.
Green... mandatory! up to the receptacle, but not necessarily req'd by Double Insulated tools. Factory installed two prong plugs.
 

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Re what Charles said; if it wasn't clear. The breaker determines the MINIMUM capacity of ALL components downstream but you can INCREASE the size of the components downstream up to the breakers' capacity.
For example; you can use 20 amp component on a 15 A breaker but you can't use 15A components on a 20A breaker. It's easier to just use the correct sizing. Some better quality receptacles will be '15Amp-20Amp Rated'///in other words the blade configuration will accept either male plug and the internal construction will be a lot more rugged.
 

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I probably muddied the water with that last one...:(
To clarify my own comment, If you draw 20A on a 15A breaker it'll just pop it.
An example might be a portable compressor; they're notorious for popping 15A breakers, especially if you plug them into a general purpose wall receptacle which probably already has lights and stuff running on the cct.
ie you're definitely going to be over 15A on start up.
 

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Are you planning on using that outlet for welding or anything that requires a 50amp breaker? If not you can always step down the breaker to the appropriate ampreage you need to run your bandsaw. It does not matter if the wire is bigger than you need but it does matter if the wire is smaller than you need. So if you only need a 30amp breaker put in a 30 amp breaker.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
OK. I'm confused again. I do have a stick welder. While I don't approach 50 amps in use, probably 40 at the most, doesn't having a larger amp breaker (and it is a 50 amp breaker) mean that any less amperage requirements will not overload the circuit?

(Grizzly bandsaw specs
Full-Load Current Rating................................................... 19A at 110V, 9.5A at 220V
Minimum Circuit size............................. 30A at 110V, 15A at 220V?

If a 110 15 amp breaker gets 20 amps of demand, doesn't it trip? I also know from experience that a short in a lamp wire will trip a 15 amp breaker even if nothing else is on that circuit.

I'm not understanding why I should NOT use the existing 50 amp breaker, with 6-8 gauge "S" wire and a 50 amp female plug to connect 220 tools. Remember the extension cord for my purposes only needs to be 20-25 " at most and at no time will more than one tool be in use.

I want a power cord that will let me use my welder and power tools. Is that not possible?

Thanks again.

Steve
 

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Or if you want to keep the option of having a outlet for welding you can make a seperate small panel out of a outdoor panel for a single breaker where you can plug it to the 220 volt 50 amp circuit and have a outlet come off that panel you made with a receptacle to fit your bandsaw. When you need it plug it up when you need to weld unplug it. Have it mounted near your 220v 50 amp recepticle.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Square-...r-Main-Lug-Load-Center-HOM24L70RBCP/100194428
 

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