Most common 240 plug in your shop?
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  1. #1
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    Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    I'm in the process of wiring my shop and I'm planning for the future. I'm looking to add a 60 gallon compressor and a plasma cutter to the fleet. What plugs should I get? Not sure on what models....still doing research on my needs. Thanks


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  2. #2
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    You shouldnt need to put a plug just yet, just make sure you pull enough wire to handle a big enough load for anything you might want to put there. 3 wires will usually work, but you can pull 4 in case you will need a ground later.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Common welder and plasma cutter receptacle is the 6-50R (receptacle)

    Any machine that comes from the factory with a connector on the power cord will have this type of plug.

    I believe compressors in that size usually do not come with a plug on the power cord so you can use the 6-50R for the receptacle and a 6-50p on the power cord.


    If you pull 6g wire for the receptacles you will be set for any welding/plasma machine that comes with a plug on the power cord.

    252, IM230, MM211, MM215, Lincoln 210MP, SW200, ESAB, HTP etc.

    That type of circuit will also handle the compressor load.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    14-50R here . . . I either use a 3 foot adapter to 3 wirefor the bigger stuff, or drop a 25 foot whip with a sub panel on it for multiple 20A recepts, both 240 and 220 volt . . .

  5. #5
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Nema 6-50 devices ARE 50 amp however, they are limited to 3HP motor loads. The only devices rated for 5HP motors are pin and sleeve, unless you have some real need to plug in a compressor, hardwire it. If the compressor is away from the panel or out of the line of sight, you should put a disconnect close by.
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  6. #6
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    3 varieties of 240V connectors in my shop:

    1) 240V 20A. NEMA 6-20R; Small compressors, car lift
    2) 240V 50A. NEMA 6-50R; Welders
    3) 240/120V 50A. NEMA 14-50R; Portable sub-panel or back-feed when the grid goes down.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    My plasma cutter came with a 6-50 but I got rid of that real fast and I built my 240 volt air compressors out of junk I had, traded for or bought from the scrap yard.
    I did that for a few reasons, 1 I lived in base housing when I got my compressor, 2 I wanted to be able to use the plasma cutter at my friends house and 3 10-30 stuff was cheap and easy to find.

    I use 10-30 dryer plugs on my plasma cutter and all 240v air compressors. Then my 240v stick welder has a 10-50 electric range plug on it.
    The air compressors all shut off well below 30 amps, one shuts off at 22 amps and the other one at 26 amps.
    I also modified the 10-30 plugs to fit a 10-50 receptacle by grinding horizontal component off the L prong leaving only a straight vertical neutral prong that fits both 10-30 and 10-50 receptacles.
    And my 240v microwave uses 6-15 but that is in the kitchen.

    I don't care for 6-50 because you can't get 6-50 sealed cord sets at a hard ware store and anything that is "6-50" is granteed to be at least double the price of something that is 10-50 and they bot do the exact same thing.

    I sold the long 6-50 cord that came on my plasma cutter to some sucker for $100 a few years later.
    Last edited by mad welder 4; 10-28-2016 at 10:28 AM.
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  8. #8
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    I've been using 6-50's for pretty much everything to date ( 2 buzz boxes, saw, 3 HP compressor, 3 grain aeration fans) with reasonable success. I'm also looking at a bigger compressor for the new shop and I don't think I would recommend a plug in if that 60 gal is a 5HP 2 stage (which is what I want). In that case I would hard wire it in with it's own on/off switch. The plug in on the portable has been handy since I have a LOT of extension cord for the aeration fans. The failure goes up when you run the cords outside (especially in wet weather) since the recepticles really aren't weather proof. One of my fans is a 5 HP (the other 2 are 3 HP) and that seems to be a little more than the 50 amp plugs want, despite their being plugged in to a 30 to 40 amp breaker.
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  9. #9
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    To steel a phrase from Blues Brothers, "we have both kinds, country and western". I have a 6-50 receptacle on the wall for most welders. I have a short extension cord with 6-50 plug and 10-50 outlet for a range and an old Lincoln AC180C welder.

    There's also a L6-30 locking 30A outlet for the compressor, just because I had the connectors.
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  10. #10
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    This question entirely depends on what amperage draw your equipment will have. If your welder only draws 30 amps and your plasma cutter only draws 30 amps then there isn't much reason to put 50 amp service in. On the other hand putting a plug right below your box and then running an extension cord in the future if you need 50 amps might be something you do as well. 6-50r is also known as a welder plug. Most equipment that is going to come with a plug will have this on it from the factory. Some equipment doesn't even come with a plug or a power cord. If you put a 6-50r in the wall you had better have 50 amp rated wire and breaker for it. If your wiring and breaker are not enough you will not pass inspection.
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  11. #11
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    My receptacles vary.

    For the welders, like others most of my bigger stuff is the L6-50. The woodworking shop has an L6-50 centrally located in case I need to weld inside, and a variety of 240 single phase twist lock receptacles for the smaller woodworking equipment. All of the 240 and 480 3 phase equipment is hard wired through safety switches located adjacent to the equipment..

    The welding and equipment repair shop has twist lock receptacles for the lathe, and L6-50's distributed throughout to allow use of welders in various locations. The mill is hard wired via an RPC.

    The compressor is hard wired.
    Last edited by scsmith42; 10-28-2016 at 01:17 PM.
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  12. #12
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    We use NEMA 6-50P/R exclusively for all single-phase welders, compressors, and tooling. 2-pole, 3 wire grounding.
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  13. #13
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    6-50R/P for everything that is 240V except the compressor, hard wire it with a disconnect switch.
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  14. #14
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldendum View Post
    To steel a phrase from Blues Brothers, "we have both kinds, country and western". I have a 6-50 receptacle on the wall for most welders. I have a short extension cord with 6-50 plug and 10-50 outlet for a range and an old Lincoln AC180C welder.

    There's also a L6-30 locking 30A outlet for the compressor, just because I had the connectors.
    I remember that in the movie in fact for some stupid reason I was thinking of it earlier today. Funny thing is most people don't realize that there really is a genre "Country" and a genre "Western" and they are different.

    Anyway my recep of choice is the 6-50, and I have made adapters to use other equipment like my little Maxstar. I have two sub panels in my shop and the one in the tool room is surface mounted so it's no big deal to hang any recep I want out of the bottom. A few years ago we had a big Christmas party and I had to roast two whole prime ribs, the house oven was going full tilt with other stuff. I threw a range recep in and cooked them in a used range I had kept since summer just for that party.
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  15. #15
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    I guess I'll stick with a couple 6-50's and direct wire the compressor. Thanks


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  16. #16
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    I converted all the 50A and below (input amperage) Miller and Lincoln machines (NEMA L14-30, NEMA 6-50P, NEMA L6-20, etc) to NEMA 14-50P, 4-wire, grounded. These run over 6-3 wire and use fused GE Safety Disconnect Switches and 50A GFCIs.

    Next challenge is to add infrastructure to support higher amps on bigger welders ---debating adding an engine drive or upgrading the shop electrical box (has #2AWG feeding it so I do have options)

  17. #17
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by savin yours View Post
    I guess I'll stick with a couple 6-50's and direct wire the compressor. Thanks


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Direct wiring the compressor is the way to go --- not sure what motor/motor starter you have on the 60-Gallon, but I have my 7.5hp/80 (35-30A FLA) on 8-2 w/ground wire running into the fused safety disconnect switch and armored conduit running out of the safety disconnect switch over to the motor starter. I also added another "cut off" switch at the motor starter that runs directly into the motor starter's coil.

  18. #18
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    I use the 6-50P on all of my welders and plasma cutters. I would also hard wire the compressor you don't need to move a 60 gallon compressor anyway. You have to use a steel box on the female end.
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  19. #19
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Just curious how you connect the wire to the receptacle, as 6g wire is REALLY thick & unforgiving!!

    Thanks!
    Eric

  20. #20
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Most common is the 6-50 for me

  21. #21
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Pretty much all of your single phase 120 and 240 air compressor motors are going to be capacitor star and capacitor run.
    They tend to have good starting torque but can run low power factor.
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  22. #22
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonearzt View Post
    Just curious how you connect the wire to the receptacle, as 6g wire is REALLY thick & unforgiving!!

    Thanks!
    Eric
    It's stranded copper wire just like your welding leads so it bends easily. All of the internal connections are held in place by screws with a brass sleeve. Easy to do and it makes for a tight connection.

  23. #23
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    I am a brand new to welding, have not even taken the shinny new Hobart 210 MVP out of the box yet. I am setting up my garage and about to wire in a couple of 6/50 outlets for the welder. My plan is to use 6 gauge wire and put each outlet on a 50 amp breaker. My question is about what wire would be best. If my research is correct, the welder/outlet works with 6/2 that has two hots and a naked ground wire. Due to my lack of knowledge about shop equipment needs, I am wondering if I should use 6/3 wire and leave the white(neutral) capped and unused for future possible use(possible welder upgrades etc....). Are there common uses for 6/3 wire demands, or should I just go with 6/2 and worry about it later? Help is greatly appreciated.

  24. #24
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by 69sa200 View Post
    It's stranded copper wire just like your welding leads so it bends easily. All of the internal connections are held in place by screws with a brass sleeve. Easy to do and it makes for a tight connection.
    He's talking about the receptacle, not the plug. He may have a low-strand count 6 awg wire, or solid 6 awg wire going from his panel to the receptacle. The plug, on the other hand, takes high-strand count copper wire from the machine, which is much, much more flexible.


    With regards to compressors, I have my 5HP compressor using a 6-50 plug, and it seems to start up fine. I'm gonna have to take current readings upon start-up.
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  25. #25
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    Re: Most common 240 plug in your shop?

    The only solid 6 gauge wire I have seen is bare copper ground, every coated wire from 8 down is stranded.

    Oscar, you may not have any issues with the compressor but, that plug is NOT rated for a 5HP motor load.
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