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#134434 - 11/10/02 03:49 AM Obtaining French plugs
pauluk Offline
Member

Registered: 08/11/01
Posts: 7693
Loc: Norfolk, England
A GC neighbor who is going to do some building work in France asked me to get him a couple of dozen French plugs to take with him for his tools. My first thought was to tell him to wait until he gets there and just go down to the local But or Carrefour, but he wants them now. (I suspect I'm going to have the task of changing all those plugs!)

Well, I thought it would be easy, but I've trawled through all my usual supply catalogs and come up empty. Spent an hour searching the net and still nothing -- Schuko plugs no problem, but not French. Even tried the UK branch of Legrand and they don't have them listed.

Can anyone point me to a mail order place, either here or in France that can supply them? Thanks.

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#134435 - 11/10/02 07:03 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
Belgian Offline
Member

Registered: 10/10/02
Posts: 177
Loc: antwerp

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#134436 - 11/11/02 07:56 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
C-H Offline

Member

Registered: 09/17/02
Posts: 1508
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
This leads me to one idea I've had before:

Why not ask CENELEC to remove the Schuko and the French plugs from the standard and to mandate the combination plug only. All cord-sets are already made with the combination plug, but rewireable plugs are almost always French OR Shuko. I can't see any reason to have two different plugs. The extra cost must be neglible.

And when they are at it: The plugs and sockets should be relabled 16A instead of 10/16A. (10A DC, 16A AC. Only a moron would use these sockets for DC nowadays)



[This message has been edited by C-H (edited 11-11-2002).]

[This message has been edited by C-H (edited 11-11-2002).]

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#134437 - 11/11/02 08:53 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
SvenNYC Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
Paul, try http://www.interpower.com/icl/index.htm

I think they have an office in the UK -- Freephone # is 0800 212 066 for the United Kingdom.

They sell plugs from all over the world. They sell the CEE 7/7 plug (which fits Schuko and French sockets). I bought a few from their American branch last month.



Above is the plug I bought. It was significantly cheaper than the right-angle variety (although that may vary in your part of the world).

Interpower is a mail-order supply house to the international electronic/electrical design and manufacture trade.

Good luck.

[This message has been edited by SvenNYC (edited 11-11-2002).]

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#134438 - 11/11/02 09:10 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
C-H Offline

Member

Registered: 09/17/02
Posts: 1508
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Just curious Sven: What did you use the plug for?

BTW. The plug above looks very much like an outdoor plug, made of soft PVC. Am I right?

[This message has been edited by C-H (edited 11-11-2002).]

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#134439 - 11/11/02 10:10 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
SvenNYC Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
CH:

I used them to make some short adapter leads for plugging 220-volt appliances with Australian and BS-1363 (13 amp British plug) into my 110-220 step-up transformer which has a Shucko socket (it's one of those 200-watt bricks).

I wasn't very happy with the quality of the ready-made Chinese adapters (didn't hold plugs in firmly enough for my taste) sold here in New York so I decided to make one of my own using Australian and BS-1363 trailing sockets, a short length of 3-core flex and those plugs. More expensive...but safer, I think.

It is a flexible plug with the outer cover made out of PVC and the inner husk that contains the contacts made out of some hard black plastic. A screw driven through a hole in the side holds everything together.

I don't know if it's listed for outdoor use; the catalog didn't specify.

P.S. Why are trailing sockets always more expensive than their mating plugs???

[This message has been edited by SvenNYC (edited 11-11-2002).]

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#134440 - 11/11/02 10:11 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
C-H Offline

Member

Registered: 09/17/02
Posts: 1508
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Was it this step up transformer you needed a Swiss plug for?

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#134441 - 11/11/02 10:32 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
SvenNYC Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
Man! You have a good memory!!

Yes that was the one. Turns out (after I received the plugs) that I had measured wrong. It was a "Middle Eastern" socket - according to one adapter manufacturer (Wonpro). I was able to find one of those adapters here luckily...

Picture a BS-546/2-amp socket with the pins EVER-SO-SLIGHTLY at different distances - so that a 2-amp British plug will fit with some major force....enough to probably bend the pins

So what I did was wire a Schuko female trailing socket to an American 115 volt 3-pin plug. Then plug the male American plug into the adapter and plug that into the 220-volt output on the x-former (115 volt American plugs can handle 220 volts no problem).

That is permanent and I don't want to wear out the female end contacts on the adapter by plugging and unplugging things.

Now I can plug various things into the Schuko trailing socket by using the adapter leads I mentioned above and also use the things I have at home with Europlugs and grounded Schuko plugs (without having to bypass the ground). UGH!!!

Who wants three Swiss plugs?

[This message has been edited by SvenNYC (edited 11-11-2002).]

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#134442 - 11/11/02 10:42 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
C-H Offline

Member

Registered: 09/17/02
Posts: 1508
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Geez, you have gone through some trouble for this.

Middle eastern? Now, that's one I haven't heard of. I still think it's Danish

You don't happen to have the dimensions?

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#134443 - 11/12/02 08:11 AM Re: Obtaining French plugs
SvenNYC Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
Paul, any luck with Interpower and that telephone # I gave you? Also, have you tried a company called Radio Spares at http://rswww.com ? I know they have a lot of offbeat stuff. Maybe Maplin might have them still (I know they used to before).

CH:

No, a Danish plug would DEFINITELY not fit. I did consider it though.

The pin dimensions on the adapter are as follows:

All pins are 4mm (same as a Europlug but unsleeved). The earth pin is offset from the L & N by about a centimetre. I measured it with a small tape measure (no micrometer or vernier caliper) so it may not be exact...but probably close enough. The company that made my adapter is at http://www.wonpro.com (they seem to be of good quality - better than most I've seen for sale)

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