Author Topic: Can you identify this power socket?  (Read 2370 times)

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Offline fudmuffin

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Can you identify this power socket?
« on: June 24, 2018, 10:23:22 am »
Hiya Forum. I have recently moved to a new place (New South Wales, Australia), and found outside a "Clipsal weatherproof IP53" AC socket. Please check the pictures.

The socket has the expected flat sockets for Active and Neutral. What has me puzzled is the round socket for the Earth pin, where I would have normally expected a vertical flat pin.

The socket runs regular 2-pronged appliances fine but a 3-pronged (earthed) plug won't fit into it, due to the Earth socket being this round hole.

I have not attempted to open up the socket, or to test the Earth connection.

Any guess as to what this socket is, or why it may not have been installed as a regular 3-flat-pronged socket?

So far, I can't seem to find anywhwere on the internet a reference to this style of socket
« Last Edit: June 24, 2018, 10:27:25 am by fudmuffin »
 

Online Rerouter

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2018, 10:34:22 am »
that is an Australian 110V socket (yes we have those)
 

Offline dgtl

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2018, 10:44:15 am »
A little googling: http://members.iinet.net.au/~cool386/plug/plug.html (scroll to bottom)
 

Offline tautech

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2018, 10:52:19 am »
that is an Australian 110V socket (yes we have those)
Never seen one here in NZ, what do you guys use them for ?
Otherwise we have the same 3 pin single phase socket as you do.
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Online Rerouter

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2018, 10:59:48 am »
If you want to use a 110V device, but don't like a US or other reversible plugs, then the Australian one it is, also makes things 200% less likely to get stolen on site as when they unplug it the go "What the hell is this"

Its from a time when universal power supplies and voltage switches where less common, so if a company was using a lot of US gear they would get a 110V tap into there premises and fit 100V Australian plugs and sockets because the american ones did not meet code.
 

Offline BradC

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2018, 11:29:03 am »
Round earth pin. Used commonly on lighting circuits but I've also seen them used on UPS circuits. I have a few lights plugged into them currently.
 
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Online Monkeh

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2018, 11:35:55 am »
that is an Australian 110V socket (yes we have those)

Nope. 110V sockets are round live pins, flat earth.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2018, 11:39:04 am by Monkeh »
 

Offline Harb

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Offline tautech

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2018, 12:03:13 pm »
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AS/NZS_3112
That seem to offer some understanding that round earth pin sockets in our 230VAC installations seem to indicate a controlled supply, and maybe that makes sense.
Quote
Other variants include plug/sockets with a rating of 10 A using a round earth pin, which is used on "special use" circuits, such as storage heaters in classrooms; and a 110 V 10 A version that has round active & neutral pins with a flat earth pin. The latter is rated at only 110 V (since certain [foreign] 110 V plugs could be inserted into the Socket-Outlet) and may be used on PAR 64 lights, where two 110 volt 1000 Watt lamps are used in series
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Offline TerraHertz

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2018, 12:20:17 pm »
Maybe the previous owner had a problem with neighbors running a cord to his outside outlet, and mooching power?

Anyway, just measure it to check there's actually 230V AC on it and the ground is good, then replace with a standard socket.
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Offline BradC

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2018, 12:44:47 pm »
Anyway, just measure it to check there's actually 230V AC on it and the ground is good, then replace with a standard socket.

... and check to make sure it's on an appropriately rated circuit before blindly replacing it with a standard GPO. It could well be wired in 1.5mm2 and on a lighting circuit.
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2018, 02:25:36 pm »
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AS/NZS_3112
That seem to offer some understanding that round earth pin sockets in our 230VAC installations seem to indicate a controlled supply, and maybe that makes sense.
Quote
Other variants include plug/sockets with a rating of 10 A using a round earth pin, which is used on "special use" circuits, such as storage heaters in classrooms; and a 110 V 10 A version that has round active & neutral pins with a flat earth pin. The latter is rated at only 110 V (since certain [foreign] 110 V plugs could be inserted into the Socket-Outlet) and may be used on PAR 64 lights, where two 110 volt 1000 Watt lamps are used in series

This was my understanding.

Several years ago I designed a sound reinforcement system for a venue that had the requirement for a "simple" user as well as advanced.  The "simple" user just plugged in the relevant microphones and then switch on the system.  For this user, all the gear (including the mixer) was locked up.  Everything was preset for best results and there was a delay relay on the output.

The "switch on" was done by a two-way switch circuit which operated a power point at the equipment end.  Because this was a specialty circuit with the power point being turned on by a remote switch (four rooms away), the socket shown above was used.  The equipment cabinet had a single lead coming out with the appropriate plug.

This socket ensured nobody could plug in any regular plug and have it energised by someone out of sight.
 

Offline fudmuffin

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2018, 06:12:21 am »
Searching google for "Australian 110V socket", even if that isn't the answer that applies to me, does bring up responses that include the apparent socket shape I am dealing with... indicating it is for "lighting", "special purposes", and "controlled circuits"

e.g.
https://www.plugsocketmuseum.nl/Australian3.html
and
http://updates.clipsal.com/clipsalonline/files/brochures/a0000123.pdf

(btw: seems there are lots of interesting plug configurations I never knew existed!)

It could well be wired in 1.5mm2 and on a lighting circuit.

If that were the case, what would be the reason for installing this particular socket configuration? As it still allows me to plug in any regular non-Earthed appliance - what benefit is it providing? (I'm unfamiliar with the implications of it being wired in 1.5mm2, and why this would cause this socket to be chosen.)

Anyway, thanks all for the replies! Looks like I should ask my electrician when he next visits. I may ask them to replace with a normal socket, but only if he deems it to be safe.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2018, 06:25:45 am by fudmuffin »
 

Offline vk6zgo

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2018, 06:39:11 am »
it's a20amp socket.

Aussie sockets go from the well known 10amp one, to the 15amp with a larger flat earth pin, & finally, the 20amp, with a round earth plug.

It is bad practice, but not uncommon, to file the earth pin on a 15amp plug so it fits a normal socket.
Thankfully, you can't do this with a 20amp plug.


Oops, I lied!!---checking, the 20amp one is just a version with larger flat pins.  :-[

The round pin one is a special one for controlled outputs, such as are used for studio lights & similar devices.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2018, 07:39:27 am by vk6zgo »
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2018, 08:18:21 am »
Here....

 

Offline innkeeper

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2018, 07:53:15 pm »
My generator uses that socket type for the 12V output.
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Offline Cyberdragon

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2018, 04:02:38 am »
My generator uses that socket type for the 12V output.

That's a problem...In fact it's probably illegal.

https://www.voltimum.com.au/articles/unsafe-small-portable-generators-and
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Offline BradC

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2018, 06:03:27 am »
My Grandfather had a standard 10A surface socket mounted to his towbar, and a standard 10A plug on the 12V fridge in his Caravan. He got quite upset when I cut it off and replaced it with an Anderson connector. Then again, the connections were also twisted together and insulated with Elastoplast so having a 240V plug on a 12V device is probably the least of the problems.


 

Offline helius

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2018, 06:07:06 am »

I surely can't be the only one to whom this looks like a series of interpretations of Edvard Munch's "The Scream".
 

Offline Nusa

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #19 on: June 26, 2018, 07:18:53 am »
My generator uses that socket type for the 12V output.

That's a problem...In fact it's probably illegal.

https://www.voltimum.com.au/articles/unsafe-small-portable-generators-and

Not in the US it isn't, and you responded to a US author. Pay attention to the authors country tag for this kind of topic. Decades ago that outlet type was used in some North American RV's for DC outlets. And still used on some generators, as you've observed.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #20 on: June 26, 2018, 08:10:46 am »
that is an Australian 110V socket (yes we have those)

Nope. 110V sockets are round live pins, flat earth.

Nope, they don't always. As the standards dictate.

In case anyone is interested, there is also another connector used in Australia which is for low voltage applications known as a "T-Pin". It's usually found in vehicles/automotive applications operating at 12-24 VDC up to 15 Amps.


 

Online Monkeh

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #21 on: June 26, 2018, 10:12:22 am »
that is an Australian 110V socket (yes we have those)

Nope. 110V sockets are round live pins, flat earth.

Nope, they don't always. As the standards dictate.

Please elaborate. You clearly know the standards, and I'm clearly not paying $220AUD to find out what they contain.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2018, 10:16:25 am by Monkeh »
 

Offline innkeeper

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #22 on: June 26, 2018, 05:39:39 pm »
My generator uses that socket type for the 12V output.

That's a problem...In fact it's probably illegal.

https://www.voltimum.com.au/articles/unsafe-small-portable-generators-and

hmm interesting.... seems its a pretty popular plug type for 12V. my generator is a Homelite/Colman, and i have seen it on Honda generators, and have seen them on other generators... i know doesn't make them legal though. but, you gotta figure there legal in some countries. like the usa...
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Offline Halcyon

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #23 on: June 26, 2018, 08:38:28 pm »
that is an Australian 110V socket (yes we have those)

Nope. 110V sockets are round live pins, flat earth.

Nope, they don't always. As the standards dictate.

Please elaborate. You clearly know the standards, and I'm clearly not paying $220AUD to find out what they contain.

The sockets you're thinking of are used in hotel rooms, where international 110V devices can be plugged in. But in special use cases, the round earth pin variant can also be used. Those are not really used in general or residential areas.
 

Online Monkeh

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Re: Can you identify this power socket?
« Reply #24 on: June 26, 2018, 08:48:32 pm »
The sockets you're thinking of are used in hotel rooms, where international 110V devices can be plugged in. But in special use cases, the round earth pin variant can also be used. Those are not really used in general or residential areas.

That doesn't make it 'an Australian 110V socket'.

This is the 110V socket:


This is one you say can be used for 110V:


The distinction seems fairly important. One is a socket used specifically for 110V, one is not.
 


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