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Author Topic: Code? Or not???  (Read 6222 times)

Keith Broughton

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #20 on: March 18, 2018, 03:14:32 pm »

Which Article? NFPA70/NEC USA.  I'm sure Hydro Ontario has something to say about it... ;)

I can think of a couple instances where this device would be a problem; they are uncommon but still accepted practice and have been covered here already.

Here's my question for the forum - is this device still available?  My thinking is that if there has been an issue "in the wild" that there would have been a lawsuit and the product likely withdrawn from the market... really, how much profit potential is there for this device, at least in the USA, versus the liability?  I can see the attorney fees much greater than the profits...

But "Is it safe?" (Marathon Man reference).
I like the reference  :)

There must be some place in the code that states you cannot connect to live ccts from different phases together...or from the same phase for that matter.
Hydro Ontario WOULD have something to say, I'm sure!
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #21 on: March 18, 2018, 05:09:22 pm »

I like the reference  :)

There must be some place in the code that states you cannot connect to live ccts from different phases together...or from the same phase for that matter.
Hydro Ontario WOULD have something to say, I'm sure!

From *different circuits*, agreed, and that's one of the scenarios mentioned where this device would present a serious problem.  If both circuits were from the same line leg the voltage would remain nominal 120V but the current available could be 40A for a 30A rated receptacle.  If both circuits were on opposed line legs the resulting 240V would not end nicely.

That said, split-circuited duplex Edison outlets are not commonly used but in an RV campground I suspect you could find almost anything.  With that last consideration in mind I think this device is a solution in search of problem at best and a potential hazard if everything isn't up to snuff.
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Mike Sokol

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #22 on: March 18, 2018, 06:10:30 pm »

That said, split-circuited duplex Edison outlets are not commonly used but in an RV campground I suspect you could find almost anything.  With that last consideration in mind I think this device is a solution in search of problem at best and a potential hazard if everything isn't up to snuff.

The gadget I originally posted doesn't appear to be currently available, but the one I'm posting below definitely is. Since many campground pedestals have both 20-amp and 30-amp 120-volt receptacles, but may not have a 50-amp/120-240-volt receptacle for shore power, then my RV readers buy this gadget to get 45-amps total which is sent to both sides of the 14-50 receptacle for the RV's shore power line. Since there's virtually no actual 240-volt appliances on US RVs, then this can work as long as the 20-amp outlet doesn't have a GFCI breaker. And there's other scenarios where this is a bad idea. But campgrounds and RV owners regularly use these, which is a bit scary with nary an inspector in sight. 
« Last Edit: March 18, 2018, 06:12:35 pm by Mike Sokol »
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #23 on: March 18, 2018, 06:26:05 pm »

Yikes, when you plug in the first side, doesn't the second one become hot?
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Mike Sokol

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #24 on: March 18, 2018, 07:35:14 pm »

Yikes, when you plug in the first side, doesn't the second one become hot?

No, they feed separate sides of the 120/240-volt service going into the RV, and everything in the RV is 120-volts. Seems crazy, but it works and RV owners do it all the time. I just don't think it's code and can't possibly pass UL. But what do I know?  :o
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Frank DeWitt

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #25 on: March 18, 2018, 08:37:25 pm »

No, they feed separate sides of the 120/240-volt service going into the RV, and everything in the RV is 120-volts. Seems crazy, but it works and RV owners do it all the time. I just don't think it's code and can't possibly pass UL. But what do I know?  :o

I like a world where people are free to solve problems.
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Not to Code

Mike Sokol

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #26 on: March 18, 2018, 08:46:52 pm »

I like a world where people are free to solve problems.

There's a lot of variations of these "dog-bone" adapters for RVers. I get emails all the time from campers who plug these things into mis-wired pedestals and bad things happen. And everyone seems a bit surprised when they burn up their RV's appliances. As I've noted before , if everything in the campground and RV is wired exactly right, then they can work. If not, then they don't.  https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias%3Dautomotive&field-keywords=Camco+RV+dogbone
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Frank DeWitt

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #27 on: March 18, 2018, 09:55:42 pm »

There's a lot of variations of these "dog-bone" adapters for RVers. I get emails all the time from campers who plug these things into mis-wired pedestals and bad things happen. And everyone seems a bit surprised when they burn up their RV's appliances. As I've noted before , if everything in the campground and RV is wired exactly right, then they can work. If not, then they don't.  https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias%3Dautomotive&field-keywords=Camco+RV+dogbone

Yes,  with great (AC) power comes great responsibility. I wouldn't use one of those "dog-bone" adapters without a meter.  In fact I don't even plug my stuff into a motel or cottage outlet without checking it first, but I am glad there is the freedom to buy and use these devices.

I appreciate your approach, Education not regulation, is the answer.  Education works everywhere you take your RV, regulation dosn't.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #28 on: March 19, 2018, 03:26:17 am »

Yes,  with great (AC) power comes great responsibility. I wouldn't use one of those "dog-bone" adapters without a meter.  In fact I don't even plug my stuff into a motel or cottage outlet without checking it first, but I am glad there is the freedom to buy and use these devices.

I appreciate your approach, Education not regulation, is the answer.  Education works everywhere you take your RV, regulation dosn't.

I will point out that the applicable regulations here are created with lots of input from the folks who *pay* for the messes left behind:  insurers.  Other affected industries have voices in the process but the main driver is to make catastrophic failures less frequent and less impactful.  Killing/injuring fewer people and having less property damage are seen as generally good things, philosophically.
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Keith Broughton

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Re: Code? Or not???
« Reply #29 on: March 19, 2018, 06:37:18 am »

The gadget I originally posted doesn't appear to be currently available, but the one I'm posting below definitely is. Since many campground pedestals have both 20-amp and 30-amp 120-volt receptacles, but may not have a 50-amp/120-240-volt receptacle for shore power, then my RV readers buy this gadget to get 45-amps total which is sent to both sides of the 14-50 receptacle for the RV's shore power line. Since there's virtually no actual 240-volt appliances on US RVs, then this can work as long as the 20-amp outlet doesn't have a GFCI breaker. And there's other scenarios where this is a bad idea. But campgrounds and RV owners regularly use these, which is a bit scary with nary an inspector in sight.
While this may work when everything is wired right, to get more current, it would have to plug into 2 separate  ccts on the same phase.
As such, it's my understanding that as a "common" outlet, the cct breakers of those outlets would have to be ganged to meet code.
So, no it doesn't meet code.
But even if they don't meet code, they are dodgy bits of kit that should not be in the hands of people that don't understand electrical power distribution.
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