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Old 08-04-2012, 13:26   #1
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Shore cable

My present hook cable is a 30mp heavy duty affair, it is very difficult to stow away
A couple of weeks ago I was on shore powerand did not have my heavy shore cable, so I used a regular extension which is I guess 10 awg cables
It manage well I had on the fridge 7 amps
battery charger some 30 amps pus lights
so pulling some 40 amps
It got a little warm but not hot
So my question is do we need to haul these big heavy extension leads when mayle a lead of say 8 awg may do
I am expectiong a lot of flac about being a complete amature, but that is what I am so flac welcomed.
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Old 08-04-2012, 13:47   #2
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Re: Shore cable

I doubt the yellow 30 amp is 8 awg.... more likely thinner wire than that. Anyone know? I sure dont see whats hard to stow about them though....?
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Old 08-04-2012, 18:31   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exmoor
My present hook cable is a 30mp heavy duty affair, it is very difficult to stow away
A couple of weeks ago I was on shore powerand did not have my heavy shore cable, so I used a regular extension which is I guess 10 awg cables
It manage well I had on the fridge 7 amps
battery charger some 30 amps pus lights
so pulling some 40 amps
It got a little warm but not hot
So my question is do we need to haul these big heavy extension leads when mayle a lead of say 8 awg may do
I am expectiong a lot of flac about being a complete amature, but that is what I am so flac welcomed.
Hmm, well since circuit breakers are there to protect the wire (not the devices plugged in), and the shore power breaker is 30 amp if one of your devices has a problem and suddenly starts drawing excessive current, expect you smaller gage wire to vaporize long before the breaker trips and perhaps start a fire on your vessel. Bottom line, not a good idea and may make you liable for any resulting fires as your insurance carrier would use this against you to avoid paying any claim.

Don
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Old 08-04-2012, 18:40   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako
I doubt the yellow 30 amp is 8 awg.... more likely thinner wire than that. Anyone know? I sure dont see whats hard to stow about them though....?
Code says AWG #10 for a 30A 125V Service Cords. 50A cords require #6.

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Old 08-04-2012, 19:42   #5
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Re: Shore cable

My Goodness, We had a 50amp cord on the Defever we just sold, and Connie all 5ft1 110 lbs coiled that and stowed it away !! how come a 30amp is so hard to handle?? just askin ?? and as said your household cord is Dangerous and should never be used for such a job
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Old 08-04-2012, 20:57   #6
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Re: Shore cable

I bet you were drawing a lot fewer amps than you think. Are you perhaps thinking that your 30 amp battery charger is actually drawing 30 amps? If you have a 12 volt system and your charger puts out 30 amps it's only drawing maybe 4 or 5 amps of 115 volt power. 30 Amp cord sets are made with 10 ga wire. The extension cords you usually find in hardware stores are commonly 16 or 14 ga wire. The extension cord should be marked. My boat has a 30 amp inlet but the dock where she lives has only a 15 amp outlet. I made up a cable with 14 ga wire that has a male 15 amp plug on one end and a 30 amp female on the other. This works fine for me but it would be hard for me to draw 15 amps with the equipment on my boat. That said, I'm concerned your cord got warm. That would indicate to me that it was close to it's maximum capacity.
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Old 08-04-2012, 21:11   #7
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Re: Shore cable

I've been using a 12/3 SJTW extension cord for the past 6 months.

It's connected to a GFCI extension (similar to this one), which is then connected to a basic power strip.

I can run two heaters (on lower settings), 15amp battery charger, and the laptop off it just fine. I can turn one of the heaters on high and it's fine, but if I try to run both on upper settings it will fault and click off.

The cord is plugged into a basic 30/15 amp adaptor at the pedistal.
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Old 08-04-2012, 21:38   #8
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Re: Shore cable

PS:

The only reason I'm using this setup is that it's about half the price of a 30A shore power cable, and also because I don't have shore power system installed on the boat... Not saying it's better. I think I'd rather lug around a normal shore power cable for the convenience of plugging into the exterior of the boat, rather than a cord running down the forward hatch.

But it works just fine...
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Old 08-04-2012, 22:46   #9
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Re: Shore cable

Many marinas will specify in the contract that you have to use a proper marine cord-set. If your substandard cord-set as has been previously explained starts a fire you will be facing lawsuits that your insurance will not cover. Going cheap on your lifeline to shore power is not wise and could be deemed foolhardy. You have a 30 amp breaker which often times will not trip before hitting 35 to 40 amps. This is one area that I would not skimp on. A 50 ft. 30A 125 volt costs about $180 or less on sale.
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Old 08-04-2012, 22:58   #10
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Re: Shore cable

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lancerbye View Post
Many marinas will specify in the contract that you have to use a proper marine cord-set. If your substandard cord-set as has been previously explained starts a fire you will be facing lawsuits that your insurance will not cover. Going cheap on your lifeline to shore power is not wise and could be deemed foolhardy. You have a 30 amp breaker which often times will not trip before hitting 35 to 40 amps. This is one area that I would not skimp on. A 50 ft. 30A 125 volt costs about $180 or less on sale.
The last 2 marina's I've been in have this very requirement. But they also stipulate a "safe standard", which doesn't mean it has to be a 30 amp shore power cord. Just that the cords used should be properly sized, fused, and water proof. Which this setup adheres to.

The 15A cord is oversized for this usage and fused at 2 different intervals, once at the power strip, then again at the 15A GFCI adaptor. This is more than adequate to prevent a fire on the boat. If the pedestal bursts into flames I don't believe a 'proper' 30A cord would make any difference...

But don't take anyones word for it. It's certainly not an area to play around in. Go read some facts and decide for yourself.
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Old 09-04-2012, 04:16   #11
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I might also add that if your 30 amp shore power is hard to store, it may be that it does not coil smoothly and thereby is kind of bulky when you try to put it in a locker. This happens when a cord is getting old, the sun has affected the insulation and some of the coils have "set" in a reverse direction. Darn thing just not want to lay flat. Kind of like a garden hose with a bad "set". Even though the ampacity of the cord is still good, time to replace the cord with a new supple covering that will coil and store nicely. Then with the new cord, always coil it the same every time, either left hand or right hand and the same size coils. It will "remember" and almost fall into a nice flat package.

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Old 09-04-2012, 05:17   #12
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Re: Shore cable

I expect your shore power inlet and main breaker are 30Amp 120VA, requiring a minimum #10 AWG shore power cable.
I expect your 40 Amp load was at 12VDC, equating to about 4 Amp at 120VAC. Your warm cable was probably MUCH smaller than #10 (likely #16).

See also Marinco's “Guide to AC Electrical Systems”:
http://www.marinco.com/files/media/g...r%27sGuide.pdf

http : //www . marinco.com/files/media/guides/AC%20Boater%27sGuide.pdf
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Old 09-04-2012, 06:00   #13
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Re: Shore cable

A typical 50 foot, 30 amp shore power cable is 10 gauge / 3 conductor.
You can find 10-gauge 50 foot "regular" extension cords, but they're rare, and they cost almost as much as the marine shore power cables.
The 50 foot cord you'd use for your hedge clipper or circular saw is usually 12/3 or 14/3, which have 66% and 50% (respectively) of the ampacity of the 10/3 cable specified for 30 amp shorepower. Trying to put 30 amps through a 14/3 will almost certainly cause the cable to overheat, and might cause a fire, without tripping the breaker.
If you're using a 25 foot extension cord, it could be as thin as 16/3.
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Old 09-04-2012, 06:20   #14
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Re: Shore cable

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Originally Posted by marshmat View Post
A typical 50 foot, 30 amp shore power cable is 10 gauge / 3 conductor.
You can find 10-gauge 50 foot "regular" extension cords, but they're rare, and they cost almost as much as the marine shore power cables.
The 50 foot cord you'd use for your hedge clipper or circular saw is usually 12/3 or 14/3, which have 66% and 50% (respectively) of the ampacity of the 10/3 cable specified for 30 amp shorepower. Trying to put 30 amps through a 14/3 will almost certainly cause the cable to overheat, and might cause a fire, without tripping the breaker.
If you're using a 25 foot extension cord, it could be as thin as 16/3.
I should add that the 12/3 cord I'm using is 25 foot.
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Old 09-04-2012, 07:21   #15
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Re: Shore cable

Quote:
Originally Posted by callmecrazy View Post
I've been using a 12/3 SJTW extension cord for the past 6 months.

It's connected to a GFCI extension (similar to this one), which is then connected to a basic power strip.

I can run two heaters (on lower settings), 15amp battery charger, and the laptop off it just fine. I can turn one of the heaters on high and it's fine, but if I try to run both on upper settings it will fault and click off.

The cord is plugged into a basic 30/15 amp adaptor at the pedistal.
I'm essentially doing the same thing but without the GFCI (need to get a couple). I run two of them most of the time and add a third during the winter for heaters. Each has it own 15 amp plugin at the dock. Like you I don't have a shore power system installed which would be nice but this works fine.
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