220 extension cord for tools - Page 3 - Router Forums
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post #21 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-24-2019, 06:14 PM
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What Marlin said.
Sorry, we got off track on the question of whether you still needed it for welding. Obviously yes, and Marlin has your solution.
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post #22 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-24-2019, 06:26 PM Thread Starter
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I understand that's a solution, but I'm not sure what it's a solution for unless I risk my power tools in plugging directly into my 220 50 amp plug.

And if it is a risk for my power tools, I still don't (obviously) grasp what the problem is.

Using a subpanel, I'll still need an extension cord for the power tools and still an extension cord for my welder, correct?

Thanks.

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post #23 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-24-2019, 06:38 PM
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The argument is somewhat what will work opposed to what is the right thing to do. The right thing to do is install a sub panel so that the breaker matched the tool reasonably close. As Dan mentioned it's sometimes desirable to wire a plug at 20 amps for a load that is supposed to be 15 because some tools have a habit of popping 15 amp breakers, especially if there are some lights and the breaker is getting older. They do get weaker with age and will pop more easily. It isn't that the bandsaw has any chance of tripping the breaker, no matter what kind of load you put and that is also part of the problem. If there is a short the breaker is so massively over rated that it might not pop until the machine catches fire. All the wires going to the tool will handle it EXCEPT the cord on the tool itself. It and the tool are the weakest link. You can go ahead and do it the way you were thinking and there is a good chance it will never be a problem. Some overkill is preferable to underkill here. It is that one chance in a million at issue. All you really need to run that tool is a 15 amp 220 breaker. Installing a subpanel would allow you to have an extra plugin or few and some lighting if you wanted. After all it's nice to have a plug close to the welder for an angle grinder and you won't be using both at the same time.
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post #24 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 07:35 AM
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The breaker is only there to protect the wire in the wall. You can put any size wire extension cord as long as it is big enough for the load, in this case #12 will be fine, #10 optimal. Your machines should have protection of their own against over current, even if only a heat sensor (reset button) on the motor. A properly wired welder plug is two hots and a ground, no neutral, so you can not derive 120 volts from it. This is a deal breaker for machines that have a magnetic starter with a 120v coil, thou many people will use the ground and one hot to activate it. They should use a 240:120 transformer instead.
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post #25 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 08:21 AM
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I have a similar situation in my garage. 240V 5hp compressor, 240V 180A welder, 240V 50A plasma cutter and 240V 5000 W heater. Wired up a receptacle near the back and the front of the garage. Made an adaptor plug so the welder and plasma can plug into the front receptacle. Also purchased a 25 ft 50 Amp welding extension cord so I can weld in the driveway.

Hint: Stove or Range cords are cheap to buy and have large 10 or 8 gage (IIRC) 3 or 4 wire - Home Depot also carries the appropriate receptacles and plugs, so you can make your own cord ends and boxes and adaptor cables.

The breaker information presented here is accurate - the risk of overfusing a machine is not a terrific idea, mine is set on a dual 30A and 15A breaker, so I cannot use more than one 240V tool at a time. Not ideal, but it works.

I rewired the 8g run to the garage in the main panel to give me 240V out of the 100 year old panel that is in there. Going to either update or replace the entire affair shortly, as with the heaters, shop vac, router and the dozen light fixtures I'm running out of juice during motor start up. Will be fusing the circuits with the appropriate sized breakers whenever the time comes - currently underfused which is fine and has worked correctly for 10 years.

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post #26 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 08:23 AM
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Why don't you just run 10 or 12 gauge To the saw and add a 220 receptacle to it? It's a lot cheaper and better than using an extension cord. If your saw can be converted to 220 then the cord on the saw is fine(unless the manufacturer says to replace it). Put a 220-volt plug on it and you're done. A 20 0r or even 30 amp is fine. But a 50 amp is a way overkill. I'm guessing that the saw is only rated at 20 amps.
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post #27 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 08:51 AM
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One of the things you need to understand is that the maximum amp draw of your tool should be determining the feed to the tool. What could be simpler but more expensive is using that 50 amp circuit to feed a sub-panel. But you should be checking with your local codes as well because if no compliant and something does happen you'll likely find the insurance company will not pay. At the bare minimum look up the National Electrical Code and see what is required for the wiring you want to do.

What is the amp draw rating on you 220 volt bandsaw? Is the motor thermally protected (have a reset button) and if not wouldn't you want to protect that motor by means of a breaker or fuse? As for sizing wire it's base on length or run and amp draw. The reason that plugs are different configurations is to prevent you from plugging in something that isn't compatible with the circuit. It is a form of protection. If that bandsaw or any other tool is connected that has a lesser amp draw rating then there is the possibility that you could get all of the 50 amps available to that motor and at best burn up just the motor, at worst a fire could result.
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post #28 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 09:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sreilly View Post
One of the things you need to understand is that the maximum amp draw of your tool should be determining the feed to the tool. What could be simpler but more expensive is using that 50 amp circuit to feed a sub-panel. But you should be checking with your local codes as well because if no compliant and something does happen you'll likely find the insurance company will not pay. At the bare minimum look up the National Electrical Code and see what is required for the wiring you want to do.

What is the amp draw rating on you 220 volt bandsaw? Is the motor thermally protected (have a reset button) and if not wouldn't you want to protect that motor by means of a breaker or fuse? As for sizing wire it's base on length or run and amp draw. The reason that plugs are different configurations is to prevent you from plugging in something that isn't compatible with the circuit. It is a form of protection. If that bandsaw or any other tool is connected that has a lesser amp draw rating then there is the possibility that you could get all of the 50 amps available to that motor and at best burn up just the motor, at worst a fire could result.
I do not think the code applies past the receptacle!!! The load of the machine must not be HIGHER than the circuit it plugs into but lower is no problem. Just think about all the little milliamp loads like cordless phones that plug into a 15 amp circuit in every household.
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post #29 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 10:04 AM
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Tooler made a good point about the welder plug wiring. It may not have a neutral going to it which rules out installing a sub panel with that wire. If the plug in on the bandsaw has 4 prongs total then you won't be able to wire it from the welder either as it needs that neutral wire. If it only has 2 prongs and ground it will still work. A lot of newer tools use induction motors and they don't have that starting circuit that needs a neutral.
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post #30 of 74 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 11:49 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tooler2 View Post
I do not think the code applies past the receptacle!!! The load of the machine must not be HIGHER than the circuit it plugs into but lower is no problem. Just think about all the little milliamp loads like cordless phones that plug into a 15 amp circuit in every household.
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This is what I've been thinking all along. As long as the tool doesn't draw more than 50 amps (this Grizzly bandsaw draws 10 amps at most) I don't understand why a subpanel is suggested, or re-working the circuit.

I honestly have tried to follow the reasoning for those suggestions, but cannot make sense of them.

I can not see how an extension cord made for 220 50 amps used with 220 power tools drawing far less than 50 amps could be a danger to any tool or circuit or cause damage.

I may be wrong here but if that was the case wouldn't 120 extension cords pose the same danger?

My idea is to use a 50 amp male plug matching my existing old-style 50 amp welding female receptacle on one end and add a female welding style receptacle on the other end and equip all the 220 tools with the matching male plugs on the tools cords.

That way all tools, including my welder, can be serviced by one 20-25' extension cord.

Thanks.

Steve
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Last edited by sgcz75b; 02-25-2019 at 11:56 AM.
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