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Plug and socket suggestion needed

Discussion in 'Electronic Components' started by Chris W, Apr 8, 2005.

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  1. Chris W

    Chris W Guest

    I have a control box with a 2 wire cable going out to a SPST switch that
    switches 120V AC line. I want to put a socket on in the box and a plug
    on the wire with the switch so I can disconnect it when it isn't
    needed. The easiest thing I can think of would be to use a standard 2
    prong outlet and plug. The problem with that is, someone might find the
    cable with the switch and plug on the end, wonder what it does, plug it
    in and flip the switch. Best case, they trip a breaker, worst case
    something starts on fire. So I don't like that idea. I have been
    searching Mouser and Digikey and the only other panel mount socket and
    matching plug I have found are the round ones that have from two on up
    to 100 or maybe more conductors. Even the 2 conductor versions are
    around $30 for the plug and socket. I was hoping to spend a lot less
    money than that. Any suggestions?

    --
    Chris W

    Gift Giving Made Easy
    Get the gifts you want &
    give the gifts they want
    http://thewishzone.com
     
  2. IEC 60320 panel outlet and free plug. Newark should have them, but I
    find their web site very unfriendly. The Farnell part numbers are 360430
    and 360454.
     
  3. loedown

    loedown Guest

    Perhaps using a large ground pin type plug / socket combo would be good, or
    if they exist, a larger pin 2 pin plug socket combo.

    Paul
     
  4. James Meyer

    James Meyer Guest

    RJ-45 sockets are available in panel mount versions and cheaply too. I
    doubt plugging an ethernet cable into something with 120 volts applied would
    start a fire.

    Jim
     
  5. Ken Taylor

    Ken Taylor Guest

    So plug 120VAC into your LAN card and see what happens.

    Ken
     
  6. John G

    John G Guest

    RJ45 style plugs are certianly NOT safe for 120 volt applications.
     
  7. Eric Inazaki

    Eric Inazaki Guest

    This power cable, is it like those lamp cords with the inline
    power switch? What about a Molex connector?

    If I read your post correctly, you do _not_ want to put the
    plug end on the cord and the socket side on the box. You
    want it the other way around: pins on the load side, sockets
    on the hot side.
     
  8. Chris W

    Chris W Guest

    Let me see if I can explain it better. The control box has a time delay
    relay that stooped working a few weeks ago. While I was getting that
    replaced, I wired a SPST switch in parallel with the relay contact and
    did the time delay manually, so I could still use the system till the
    relay was replaced. Now I want to remove that switch but still keep it
    around so if the relay goes bad again I can just plug it in and go. The
    switch has to be on the end of about a 6 foot cable to make the system
    usable. So I want to cut the wire at the box put a socket in the box
    and a plug on the wire with the switch.

    --
    Chris W

    Gift Giving Made Easy
    Get the gifts you want &
    give the gifts they want
    http://thewishzone.com
     
  9. Michael

    Michael Guest


    Keyed AC socket and plug? Pins on the plug I'm talking about are flat but
    slightly curved, and laid out in a circular pattern. Can't remember what
    they're called. Plug in and twist. Locked! A bonus is that the socket is so
    wierd that anyone who tries to jam a standard plug into it *deserves* whatever
    bad things happen to him/her.
     
  10. Eric Inazaki

    Eric Inazaki Guest

    Let me see if I can explain it better. The control box has a time delay
    relay that stooped working a few weeks ago. While I was getting that
    replaced, I wired a SPST switch in parallel with the relay contact and
    did the time delay manually, so I could still use the system till the
    relay was replaced. Now I want to remove that switch but still keep it
    around so if the relay goes bad again I can just plug it in and go. The
    switch has to be on the end of about a 6 foot cable to make the system
    usable. So I want to cut the wire at the box put a socket in the box
    and a plug on the wire with the switch.[/QUOTE]

    I understand. I don't know what's giving you trouble try Molex/Waldom,
    Amp CPC, Conxall, Amp Mate-N-Lok. Are you searching their web catalogs
    or hard copy? Web catalogs are next to useless for "I'll know it when I
    see it" searches.
     
  11. Eric Inazaki

    Eric Inazaki Guest

    Sounds like one of those funky plugs that Hubbell makes.
    You can get those from Grainger, Allied or probably any
    good electrical supply house serves comercial or industrial
    customers. Might be more than the guy wants to spend,
    though.
     
  12. JeffM

    JeffM Guest

    Keyed AC socket and plug? Pins on the plug I'm talking about are...
    Same thing I thought of
    (because I used one for a switch on a break-it-down-easily system).
    http://www.hubbellnet.com/max_htm/tech_stuff/NEMA/ml_2p.htm
     
  13. Guest

    How much current does the switch have to handle? If it's just a few
    amps, you might put an inline fuse in the cord to the switch. If
    anybody plugs it into the wall and flips the switch, the fuse probably
    blows before the breaker.

    You could use the type of connector that is on computer power cords.
    Something like a Digi-Key Q223-ND ($1) on the control box, and a Q216-ND
    ($7) on the end of the switch cord.

    You could go for the old-time look with a Jones connector. Mouser
    538-23023 ($1.50) on the control box and 538-13021 ($2.50) on the
    switch cord.

    Matt Roberds
     
  14. There are some slightly more oddball connectors available easily (say,
    from Home Despot in the US/Canada) including 120V twist-lock
    connectors. Very cheap, IIRC, though not as cheap as domestic blade
    plugs/sockets. XLR connectors are probably rated for the voltage, but
    I don't haven't looked at the safety aspect of the females, and
    somebody could plug a microphone into his box. ;-)


    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
     
  15. XLR are available with a 240V rated 3-pin or more arrangement:

    Electrical Ratings:
    Current per contac
    t 3 pole, 16 A
    4 pole, 10 A
    5 pole, 7·5 A
    Rated voltage 250 V a.c.
    Test voltage 1500 V a.c.
    Contact resistance £ 3 mO
    Insulation resistance ³ 109O

    These are Neutrik (Swiss) but I also seem to recall that Cannon did make a
    specific 240V 2 pin plus earth XLR connector and socket, but I don't see it on
    the RS catalogue now. We have a couple of bits of old kit in the workshop fitted
    with these. The body insert moulding was Red and the pins were mechanically
    shielded IIRC.

    I'll have a look in some old Newark catalogues.

    Peter
     
  16. I read in sci.electronics.design that Peter A Forbes
    They are NOT rated as mains connectors DO NOT USE XLRs for mains!
    It (the XLR-LNE) doesn't meet current safety requirements.

    The IEC 60320 outlet socket and cable-mounting plug are made
    specifically for what the OP wants to do, and meet all known safety
    requirements. Why search for inferior, maybe dangerous, substitutes?
     
  17. I wasn't, I was just pointing out what is (or was) available.

    The ratings for the Neutrik connectors are from their website.

    Peter
     
  18. Yes, it was more of an amusing (?) suggestion. There are a lot of
    wimpy little connectors rated at 300V that should never see anything
    more than 24V and even that at limited current.




    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
     
  19. I read in sci.electronics.design that Peter A Forbes
    I didn't mean you, I meant the OP, if he hasn't got tired and gone away.
    They are, but you need to understand what they mean, and what they don't
    mean. The clearance and creepage distances for mains connectors have to
    take into account that voltage spikes occur, up to 10 times the supply
    voltage quite often, and occasionally up to 30 times.
     
  20. I read in sci.electronics.design that Spehro Pefhany
    That's why I persuaded IEC to make IEC 61984 a standard, not a report.
    It gives safety requirements for connectors not covered by another
    specific standard, as, for example, the IEC 60320 connectors are.
     
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