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Re: Danish type K Sockets [Re: RODALCO] #220491 02/04/20 05:46 AM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,466
Texas_Ranger Offline
1) Polarisation is mainly an issue with ES floor and table lamps. Most of these have a Euro plug, which isn't polarised in any type of socket.
2) There are non-polarised CEE 7/5 sockets, or more precisely, mirrored double sockets with the earth pins in the centre.
3) One could easily design sockets that accept either CEE 7/4, 7/7 and IEC 60906 or 7/6, 7/7 and IEC 60906 plugs for an easy transition
4) The biggest issue trying to replace BS1363 with anything else is the unfortunate fact that BS1363 sockets can be on circuits up to 32 amps and rely on fuses in the plugs for short-circuit protection. On the other hand, Ireland requires any electrical work to be carried out by professionals, with hefty fines of up to 6000 Euros for DIY work, so safely upgrading existing installations doesn't seem impossible. Ring final circuits would have to be split into two radials, radials could be downgraded, provided they aren't too large.
5) Shuttered Schuko sockets are readily available and becoming more and more common. Some EU countries already require them everywhere, others in places like kindergartens.

On a side note regarding circuit overcurrent protection: more careful Germans tend to worry about the capacity of Schuko sockets to carry the rated 16 amps for extended periods of time (some claim manufacturers only rate them for 1 hour at 16 amps and 10 amps continuously but I haven't found any reliable sources for that, many people get seriously confused by the historic 10-/16~ rating) and especially moderate overloads, as a B or C16 MCB can survive 1.45 times its rated current for up to an hour. The French on the other hand happily install identical sockets on C20 MCBs, according to one source even C25.

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Re: Danish type K Sockets [Re: RODALCO] #220492 02/04/20 06:29 AM
Joined: Jun 2014
Posts: 108
dsk Offline
Electric storage heaters are the common way to heat watere in Scandinavia, here in Norway we have had pretty much problems with those socets on heaters with more than 1500W elements, so new storage heters are not alowed to have schuco plugs unless the effect is less than 1500W (we have had 2kW storage heater in my home since 1988, and never had a problem) smile

[Linked Image from]

By my opinion, it is not the plug and socket who is the problem, but for the most how the wire is terminated in 1) The plug, and 2) The socket. I keep an eye on such things and on 2 washing macines, I felt hot plugs, changed the molded plug to a new one, and the problem was solved. It seems to be important to use end ferrules.
[Linked Image from]

Last edited by dsk; 02/04/20 06:41 AM.
Re: Danish type K Sockets [Re: RODALCO] #220493 02/04/20 07:10 PM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,466
Texas_Ranger Offline
Yes, terminating the wires properly is crucial! All burning I've seen was from loose wires, once even in a moulded plug (on a dishwasher)!

Re: Danish type K Sockets [Re: RODALCO] #220495 02/06/20 06:52 PM
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 1,250
djk Offline
TexasRanger: Historically polarisation wouldn't have made much difference for lamps here as they were all bayonet fittings anyway - i.e. two springy pins at the bottom of the bulb holder and no screw contacts. ES fittings have only become common in recent years, but the BC fittings are still the de facto norm.

For whatever reason, Irish electricians tended not to use rings as much as their UK counterparts. It's permitted, but not as common. You'll typically find most socket circuits are on B20 breakers. We also no longer allow rings in kitchens due to the cluster of high wattage appliances likely to be encountered. So, you're supposed to install at least 3 radials.

Schuko's still mentioned in Irish standards as IS-180 and the modern references are just a referral to CEE 7 standards. The original Irish standard documents were quite interesting as they describe in considerable detail how to test Schuko plugs i.e. overloading them with higher amperages for considerable periods of time and even dropping them from a standard height onto various surface types.

The main barrier to change here would be just the huge inconvenience of it. Also, BS1363 sockets are flat and require very shallow wall boxes relative to Schuko. The flush versions are much tidier looking and don't catch fluff, grease etc. The plugs are rather bulky however, although as I was mentioning they are getting slimmer due to recent amendments to the standard that allows for folding pins and smaller plug bodies.

The main risk we have is the UK wandering off into some completely non-compliant standards. It wouldn't be beyond the realms of possibility that they might say start accepting products certified in Mainland China if that were part of some trade deal etc etc.

As for IEC 60906

From what I read, the main objectors to it were the UK and Germany, both of whom made technical arguments against it. So, it never progressed in Europe.

You certainly could make a Schuko or French socket with an extra hole that would accommodate IEC 60906 in the medium term. It would just be like a neater version of the Italian sockets that do similar, as AFAIK IEC 60906 would fit inside an existing Schuko outlet.

You could also do a BS1363 socket with IEC 60906 sockets on a double plate. For example, this page shows BS1363 13amp and BS546 2amp sockets with local fusing on on a single double plate. There's no particular reason you couldn't do similar with a 16 amp fuse for a IEC 60906 socket.

See no. 10 :

I would assume in Ireland we won't do anything unless it becomes absolutely apparent that using BS1363 is more inconvenient than switching back to Schuko. However, in the 1960s and 70s and well into the early 90s it was common enough to get items delivered with continental plugs and just cut them off and fit Irish ones. That could once again become the norm.

There's no way we'd adopt IEC 60906 unless the whole of the EU was doing it. It would be absolutely no advantage to do it on our own. We'd just be jumping from BS1363 to a system that was still incompatible with grounded European plugs.

It seems a bit of a weird choice for South Africa, given the size of that market. CEE 7 would have made more sense.

Last edited by djk; 02/06/20 06:55 PM.
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