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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    9

    Default Another Noob 240V Question or two --

    Hi, all --

    New owner of a Miller 211. I have 240V in my garage with a 5-20r receptacle (currently used for my air compressor). I believe it necessarily is single-phase.

    The 211 and my 25-ft extension cord have 6-50p plug ends and a 6-50r receptacle on the cord.

    Two questions:

    1. After a lot of web surfing, I've concluded I can simply make up a cable with a male 5-20p end and a female 6-50r end, and plug straight into the 240V wall socket.

    Is this correct, or is there a better way to do this?

    2. I need to double-check my panel, but I believe I have 20 amp breakers feeding the 240V wall socket.

    Can/should I replace/upgrade the 20 amp breakers to 30 amp breakers?

    EDIT: If I do upgrade to 30 amp breakers, do I need to also upgrade the 5-20r wall socket?

    Thanks for the help!
    Mark
    Last edited by mneblett; 04-17-2013 at 09:36 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Cave Creek Az
    Posts
    985

    Default

    You can make the cord and t should work okay. I wouldn't upgrade teh breaker until you know what wire size you have in the wall. Breaker is to protect the wire and should be appropriately sized for the wire, not the load.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    270

    Default

    A 5-20R is for 120 Volt, 20 Amps. ???

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by USMCPOP View Post
    A 5-20R is for 120 Volt, 20 Amps. ???
    240V, 20A. My wall socket meters at 248V across the hots with a cheap Sears voltmeter.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    YOUNGSTOWN, OHIO
    Posts
    172

    Default

    Sorry, but a 5-20 is a NEMA rated 125 volt 20 amp receptacle. A 6-20 is a 250 volt 20 amp. rated receptacle. If you have a 5-20R with 248 volts across it, you need to change it,
    JIM

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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jpence38 View Post
    Sorry, but a 5-20 is a NEMA rated 125 volt 20 amp receptacle. A 6-20 is a 250 volt 20 amp. rated receptacle. If you have a 5-20R with 248 volts across it, you need to change it,
    I'll double-check -- it is likely a 6-20r -- I saw a pic of a 5-20r with the same slot pattern on the face and jumped to conclusions. The socket was installed by an older licensed electrician, and based on what I saw I believe he did it "by the book."
    Last edited by mneblett; 04-17-2013 at 03:46 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    metro Detroit
    Posts
    80

    Default

    There are a few things you need to take into consideration. First is the load other words how many amps. The second is the distance to the fuse panel, the longer the distance, the thicker the wire you're going to need.
    For example if your plug is only 10 feet from the panel you could probably get away with 10 gauge wire, but like in my shop it over 100 feet away so I used 8 gauge and I have no problems(going on 3 years now).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    metro Detroit
    Posts
    80

    Default

    Forgot, I am running my mm211 on a 30 amp 240volt breaker. Hope this helps

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    9

    Default

    Thanks for the additional input.

    The wall socket is ~8 feet from the sub-panel. (After killing power) I'm going to pull the 6-20R socket to see whether I can determine what gauge is between the panel and the socket.

    Depending on what I find, I've decided to skip making up a 6-20p/6-50R extension cord, and instead will see whether there is large enough wire in the wall to let me install a 30A breaker and replace the 6-20R socket with a 6-50r socket (and add a label indicating the 30 amp limit if the wall wire won't support 50A).

    I expect to be in the house for a long time (already been here 17 years), so I expect that if the wire size is limiting, I'll get around to upgrading it sometime. In the meantime, I don't expect to ever have anything that pulls as much as the welder, and 30A will take care of that.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Northern Arizona
    Posts
    479

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mneblett View Post
    Thanks for the additional input.

    The wall socket is ~8 feet from the sub-panel. (After killing power) I'm going to pull the 6-20R socket to see whether I can determine what gauge is between the panel and the socket.

    Depending on what I find, I've decided to skip making up a 6-20p/6-50R extension cord, and instead will see whether there is large enough wire in the wall to let me install a 30A breaker and replace the 6-20R socket with a 6-50r socket (and add a label indicating the 30 amp limit if the wall wire won't support 50A).

    I expect to be in the house for a long time (already been here 17 years), so I expect that if the wire size is limiting, I'll get around to upgrading it sometime. In the meantime, I don't expect to ever have anything that pulls as much as the welder, and 30A will take care of that.
    Famous last words... If you are in the wiring and have the money might as well bump it up to a 50amp circuit. Who knows what you will get next. Then you will be set and won't have to do it again!
    MillerMatic 251
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