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  • Electrical plug/outlet conversions

    First, please excuse my ignorance or errors in terminology. :-)
    This is the issue I have and hoping someone can help so I don't electrocute myself:

    I bought the Hobart Handler 190 and live in Costa Rica, where electrical code or US/Canada standards, practices, and materials are not exactly in place/available.

    The 190 comes with a power cable and plug that I cannot find an outlet for in this country. This means that I have to create an adapter, while I'm also extending the cable some distance. I'm confident in the wire, just not how to hook it up to the outlet. The 50amp outlet has three prongs like the Hobart plug. After I took the welder apart to understand the wire configuration, it appears that there are two hot wires and one ground wire. I think.

    The outlet I have is wired with two hot, 1 neutral and no ground wire.

    To the best of my knowledge, or lack thereof, I shouldn't connect the ground from the welder to the neutral, thus:

    1) Do I splice the wire and ignore the ground wire and just have the two prongs connect the two hot to the two hot outlet wires?
    2) Do I splice the wire with the ground to the neutral?
    3) Do I give up and call an electrician here. (The problem with that is that I've corrected so-called electrician work here numerous times, and I'm no electrical genius, clearly)

    Secondary to all that, I also then have a 7500 watt generator I need to also adapt the plugs for. I'm guessing all the same principles will apply if anyone can give me any guidance on the first problem.

    I'm looking for some sort of coupler to connect to the outlet and the generator, when required. Any guidance on connecting to the generator is most appreciated as well.

    Gracias!

  • #2
    Click image for larger version

Name:	image_39125.jpg
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ID:	703798 You can purchase adapter extension cords ready made. I purchased an adapter extension cord to connect my Hobart Handler 190 to my portable generator. See attached photograph.

    My generator has a 4-wire twist-lock receptacle into which I plug in the extension cord. Note that only three of the four terminals within the twist-lock plug of my extension cord have an attached conductor.

    The opposite end of my extension cord has a receptacle which receives the welder's plug. The extension cord should have at least 10 gauge wire conductors but 8 gauge (bigger) conductors would be even better.

    My understanding is the welder's plug connects to two hot legs and neutral if it is powered by the utility's electrical service.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Badbmwbrad View Post
      Click image for larger version

Name:	image_39125.jpg
Views:	159
Size:	29.6 KB
ID:	703798 You can purchase adapter extension cords ready made. I purchased an adapter extension cord to connect my Hobart Handler 190 to my portable generator. See attached photograph.

      My generator has a 4-wire twist-lock receptacle into which I plug in the extension cord. Note that only three of the four terminals within the twist-lock plug of my extension cord have an attached conductor.

      The opposite end of my extension cord has a receptacle which receives the welder's plug. The extension cord should have at least 10 gauge wire conductors but 8 gauge (bigger) conductors would be even better.

      My understanding is the welder's plug connects to two hot legs and neutral if it is powered by the utility's electrical service.
      Thanks, your feedback is much appreciated. My problem is that I live in Costa Rica and what may be readily available where you are is not available here. I mean, maybe somewhere, but it will take weeks to find it, if I do at all. I guess I'm really trying to understand whether what appears to be "ground" on the welder's plug can be connected to neutral on the 220/240 outlet.

      Comment


      • #4
        I am not an electrician but my understanding is the electrical service distribution panel has two "hot" bus bars. Each bus bar is at 120 volts AC potential. There is also a neutral bus bar and it's located off to the side of the panel.

        A voltmeter having one probe touching either (not both) hot bus bar and the other probe touching neutral will indicate 120 VAC. If each of the voltmeter's probes are touching a hot bus bar then 240 VAC will be indicated.

        The panel's neutral bus bar is connected to the bare copper ground wire such that no voltage potential exists between these two components.

        On my Handler 190, the plug's two blades are connected to the 120 VAC hot legs respectively. The rounded prong on the plug is connected to neutral. To be sure, there is an electrical connection diagram in the Hobart 190 handler's manual which shows how to wire its electrical service supply receptacle. Go to section 5-10.

        Go to this link then open the "More Info" drop-down menu to see the Hobart Handler 190 manual.

        https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/pr...r?cm_vc=-10005
        https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/pr...r?cm_vc=-10005
        Last edited by Badbmwbrad; 02-16-2019, 05:53 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Your concept of there being two 120 volt lines (L1 & L2) and plug configurations seem to be correct....The confusion comes in with the third line you label as "neutral" ... The Handler 190 does not use a "neutral".... The third wire is a safety ground... In US the safety ground is tied common to the neutral bar supplied from utility box and also is CONNECTED TO A DRIVEN GROUND ROD..... This is the only place the neutral and ground are common....

          Same with twist lock plug for generator (if wired per US standard). The generator has a "neutral" but it is not used, for 4 prong twist lock only L1 & L2 and SAFETY GROUND are used.....

          One has to be careful with the neutral and ground connections, they may be same electrically at master breaker panel (bonded and connected to driven ground rod) but once leaving master breaker panel the terminology and application are not the same....

          IT might be easy to just provide a 14-30R receptical wired from your fuse/breaker panel, and use your generator adapter cable to connect to your "mains" this way you do not have to change plugs on welder cord ......

          Is most cases 240 volt devices do not use a "neutral" conductor unless if has internal devices like motors and components that require 120V power...


          Click image for larger version  Name:	neurtal-ground.jpg Views:	0 Size:	39.1 KB ID:	703803

          IN image above "ground" is bare wire from driven ground rod...

          Click image for larger version  Name:	L14-30P to 6-50R.jpg Views:	0 Size:	29.5 KB ID:	703804


          Dale
          Last edited by Dale M.; 02-16-2019, 08:37 PM.
          Lives his life vicariously through his own self.

          Comment


          • #6
            We could use more info on what the exact configuration of your existing receptacle is. But the gist has been explained. You will ignore the neutral and connect your two hots to the two hots of the receptacle you have, doesn't matter which. Connect the ground to the ground since you have it. Chances are, nothing would care if you tied it to the neutral because this is usually a dedicated circuit to the main panel anyway, in the USA.

            Comment


            • #7
              I appreciate the advice, but some further clarification may be needed.

              Originally posted by MAC702 View Post
              We could use more info on what the exact configuration of your existing receptacle is.
              "The outlet I have is wired with two hot, 1 neutral and no ground wire." Not sure if I'm missing something that would help.

              Originally posted by MAC702 View Post
              But the gist has been explained. You will ignore the neutral and connect your two hots to the two hots of the receptacle you have, doesn't matter which. Connect the ground to the ground since you have it.
              I don't have it currently wired at the outlet, but I think I can rewire it. The electrician ran a green wire (presumably ground) but it is not connected. Doing some more reading, I think I understand why these plugs (typically for appliances) are wired this way with the neutral.

              Originally posted by MAC702 View Post
              Chances are, nothing would care if you tied it to the neutral because this is usually a dedicated circuit to the main panel anyway, in the USA.
              I've also read that some have just connected the ground to neutral, but I guess I'll rewire the outlet anyway.

              Originally posted by Dale M. View Post
              Your concept of there being two 120 volt lines (L1 & L2) and plug configurations seem to be correct....The confusion comes in with the third line you label as "neutral" ... The Handler 190 does not use a "neutral".... The third wire is a safety ground...
              This is the essence of my problem. I didn't say that the Handler 190 has a neutral, but the outlet is wired this way.

              Originally posted by Dale M. View Post
              In US the safety ground is tied common to the neutral bar supplied from utility box and also is CONNECTED TO A DRIVEN GROUND ROD..... This is the only place the neutral and ground are common....
              I believe this is why I've read that some just recommend connecting the welder ground to the neutral, but as above, looks like I can just rewire it as long as it's dedicated only to the welder.

              Originally posted by Dale M. View Post
              Same with twist lock plug for generator (if wired per US standard). The generator has a "neutral" but it is not used, for 4 prong twist lock only L1 & L2 and SAFETY GROUND are used.....
              Understood, thanks. I actually saw your generator plug image on another thread and that helps clarify things, now understanding more the reason why these typical appliance plugs are wired this way and why the welder wouldn't use the neutral.

              Originally posted by Dale M. View Post
              One has to be careful with the neutral and ground connections, they may be same electrically at master breaker panel (bonded and connected to driven ground rod) but once leaving master breaker panel the terminology and application are not the same....

              IT might be easy to just provide a 14-30R receptical wired from your fuse/breaker panel, and use your generator adapter cable to connect to your "mains" this way you do not have to change plugs on welder cord ......

              Is most cases 240 volt devices do not use a "neutral" conductor unless if has internal devices like motors and components that require 120V power...

              IN image above "ground" is bare wire from driven ground rod...
              I may just break down and order everything online to ship to Costa Rica -- Mucho $$$ in duty and shipping, but --

              To summarize, I'm going to:
              1) Rewire outlet for exclusive use of welder, replacing neutral with ground wire provisioned at junction.

              2) Order 14-30p to 6-50r adapter

              3) Order additional 14-30r receptacle to connect to the end of my extension


              I think with this, I'll then have:
              No need to splice original cord/plug; I'll just plug that into adapter for use with generator and further plug that into my homemade extension which will then connect to three prong 10-50r using the existing outlet and existing 10-50p I've used at the end of my extension. (I don't need the extension when I use the welder with the generator, just with the outlet on the building). Optionally, I guess I could order another 14-30r and 14-30p and remove the current outlet and what I've wired as a plug to my extension already.

              If anyone thinks I've completely gotten this wrong, or even slightly, I do appreciate the critique. Thanks for all the valuable advice!

              Comment


              • #8
                Okay, you have a NEMA 10 configuration. I misread and thought you said you had two hots, one neutral, and one ground, and assumed a NEMA 14.

                Your NEMA 10-30 or 10-50 will have the neutral going to the panel anyway, so use it as your ground. We wire welders like this all the time. For the record, I'm a professional electrician.

                If anything is substantially different in Costa Rica, let us know, but it sounds like the same stuff we do in USA (and Colombia and Mexico, where I've worked.)
                Last edited by MAC702; 02-17-2019, 12:30 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by MAC702 View Post
                  Okay, you have a NEMA 10 configuration. I misread and thought you said you had two hots, one neutral, and one ground, and assumed a NEMA 14.

                  Your NEMA 10-30 or 10-50 will have the neutral going to the panel anyway, so use it as your ground. We wire welders like this all the time. For the record, I'm a professional electrician.

                  If anything is substantially different in Costa Rica, let us know, but it sounds like the same stuff we do in USA (and Colombia and Mexico, where I've worked.)
                  Muchisimas gracias!

                  Comment

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