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Old 13-11-2013, 16:01   #1
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Check Your Shorepower

Winter is approaching and we all add AC heaters to the list of things that draw shore power. The article below from Latitude38 has prompted me to remind us all to check our shore power where it plugs into the boat. If it's warm, you've got problems.
l
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Old 13-11-2013, 16:18   #2
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

Yep, they burn up 30 amp cords regularly.
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Old 13-11-2013, 17:29   #3
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

I've switched to the SmartPlug system http://www.smartplug.com/marine_30amp.html on my boat. It features larger blade contacts, a positive lock that prevents the plug coming loose, O-ring seal and a thermal breaker. While I was doing it, I also installed the new Blue Sea ELCI/GFIC unit immediately adjacent to it to provide 30 ma protection to the whole boat's Shorepower AC system. The system requires changing out the shorepower fixture on the boat's exterior, as well as the terminal cord plug that mates to it.

The original system (Marinco-type) is what most boats are using now. Maybe it's time to overhaul?
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Old 13-11-2013, 17:36   #4
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

Converted to the Smartplug on the boat side of my cord a couple of years ago and love it.
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Old 13-11-2013, 19:54   #5
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

Hi all, For my new build, I eliminated the boats shore power fitting and the shore cords plug that goes into it by just running the whole cord right through the entrance point straight to the isolation transformer. I think that I eliminated two big possible points of failure by doing this. The shore power cord is coiled into a container inside the boat when not used and exits through a chafe free grommeted outlet that can be closed off at sea. The large 50 amp connector fits into the housing with the flush cap on it. Maybe a marketing idea there,but I have enough on my plate, finishing off this 55 foot alloy monster.
cheerio Greg Janes
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Old 13-11-2013, 19:59   #6
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

i have had same cord , 30 amp , since forever, or 10 yrs....was on my ericson. never burned nor blackened. the one on this boat when i got it was blackened and shorts some, so i dont use it..i will be changing out the plug.
if the plug is not twist locked it will not connect properly and can burn.
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Old 14-11-2013, 00:56   #7
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design fault from 70 years back that shows up when you high load the plug
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Old 14-11-2013, 06:31   #8
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

after replacing the twist lock plug and socket every year, I also switched to the "Smart Plug" system, and like the others, I am very impressed with it. NO HEAT at all, even when checked with temperature gun!!!!! When I installed a new twist lock plug, it showed heating immediately. The blades on twist-locks are just too small! The "Smart Plug" has 20% more blade contact area.
According to statistics the shore power cord is the highest cause of boat fires!!!
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Old 14-11-2013, 06:56   #9
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

Just a point of continued frustration I see over and over. The article states that you should not load a 30A circuit at more than 30A...

A 30A shore circuit should not ever be continuously loaded at 30A. 80% of any circuit is the max you want to load for continuous use. On boats I prefer to size for 70% max due to the corrosion that is inherent on boats. Running any circuit at 100% is a recipe for disaster and I see the result of it over and over......

Beyond that I am a huge fan of the Smart Plug. I wish it would become the new standard for marine use but I know that will never happen.. The current standard, IMHO as a marine electrician, flat out dangerous......



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Old 14-11-2013, 09:35   #10
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Re: Check Your Shorepower

Features of SmartPlug Marine Shore Power Products
Not affiliated just a happy customer, and like PB I too am an electrician, (shade tree), but still worked with electric many years
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