European to North American plug


  #1  
Old 02-18-15, 12:01 PM
S
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 2
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
European to North American plug

Hello everybody!
I'm from Europe (Italy), and I have a bit of issues on converting an electrical plug from italian to American.
The plug serve to bring power to a small switching converter (12V, 3A max).
The point is that I have read a lot about this tipe of operation, the gauge of the original wire is fine, but the Italian plug only has 2 poles (line and neutral), while the american plugs I need to use have 3 poles ( 1 for the white, 1 fro the black and one for the green). The green I have to skip it (even the power supply has only 2 input terminal), but my problem is about the possibility of swapping the line and neutral on the american plug.
Everywhere I found a lot of warning about respecting the connections (line on the white, neutral on the black), but... what if I switch them? is that really an issue with the american power supply? With the original cable the direction of isertion is totally arbitrary and invertable, is that the same even for the american 3 pole plug (apart from the fuct they can't be plugged reversed, but from the wiring point of view the connection could be swapped)?
Thanks a lot for the aptience of reading this post and thanks even more for the help!
 
  #2  
Old 02-18-15, 01:57 PM
I
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Near Lansing, Michigan
Posts: 9,785
Upvotes: 0
Received 45 Upvotes on 43 Posts
Everywhere I found a lot of warning about respecting the connections (line on the white, neutral on the black),
Wrong way! In the American system white is always neutral, black is hot (line).

but... what if I switch them? is that really an issue with the american power supply?
It is only an issue if that appliance has the neutral connected to any exposed metal parts. If the line and neutral were switched, it would be a shock hazard.

With the original cable the direction of isertion is totally arbitrary and invertable
If it doesn't matter on the EU plug, it shouldn't matter on the US plug. The appliance should be designed to be safe in either configuration.
 
  #3  
Old 02-18-15, 02:06 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 29,711
Upvotes: 0
Received 15 Upvotes on 13 Posts
but the Italian plug only has 2 poles (line and neutral),
So do American 120 volt plugs but 240 plugs have two hots no neutral. I assume the device is 220 and you are going to use it on 240v, correct?
(line on the white, neutral on the black),
The term line refers to any feed that supplies power. It does not refer to individual wires. If 120v white (or gray) is neutral. If 240 there is no neutral. There is a third combination but that isn't relevant here. If this device requires 220 volts it will not work in a regular household receptacle.
 
  #4  
Old 02-19-15, 02:33 AM
S
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 2
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Thank you all for the help!

@ibpooks
You are totally right! Tiring day resulted in a big typo. Thank you for pointing that out.

@ray2047
the power supply I'm using is rated with input 100-240v to 12v-3000mA out.
The plugs we have for now are NEMA 6-15, so are rated for 208-240V-up to 15A.
To me those specification match, but obviously I don't have any experience on North American powers...
 
  #5  
Old 02-19-15, 08:26 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 29,711
Upvotes: 0
Received 15 Upvotes on 13 Posts
That sounds correct but why not a NEMA 1-15 plug so you can plug into any general purpose 120v receptacle. Using a 6-15 you will have to install a special receptacle and feed for it.
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: