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Sp2 Wire And Old X-Mas Light Plugs


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Question....I use sp2 wire, has anyone ever used the plugs off of old nonworking x-mas lights by soldering them then putting heat shrink tape on them instead of vampire plugs when you in a pinch. Then the sp2 wire would be fused to....Would this work????? 

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Guess I'm the black sheep in the crowd...........I would be very,very careful doing that, remember sp2 wire is 18ga and light string wire is 22 or 24ga.......remember the sign on the light box, don't attach more that 3 strings together!!  Thats because of the small wire size of light strings

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UL has not approved 24 gauge wiring for use in light strings for years........22 gauge is the most common{and minimum allowed by UL},with 3 amp fuses in the plug,and 20 gauge with 5 amp fuses is used in commercial or heavy duty light strings.

YEA, So what are you sayin"??

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OK I'm using LED'S , I have a AMP/WATT tester. The AMP'S being drawn are 00.3. Just using the male end ,Wouldn't you think the fuses would blow b/4 the wire got to hot to melt and electrocuted someone? I understand your concern gmac..But now I'm wondering why some say it's ok...and you say it's not... I don't see my factory x-mas light wires causing any problems, What would the difference be between extension cord and connecting them to the same thing right ? different wire sizes... Why couldn't a person just use a old strand for a cord??SORRY I'M JUST TRYING TO UNDERSTAND THIS ?????????????  SORRY, I didn't mean to start a argument..

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OK I'm using LED'S , I have a AMP/WATT tester. The AMP'S being drawn are 00.3. Just using the male end ,Wouldn't you think the fuses would blow b/4 the wire got to hot to melt and electrocuted someone? I understand your concern gmac..But now I'm wondering why some say it's ok...and you say it's not... I don't see my factory x-mas light wires causing any problems, What would the difference be between extension cord and connecting them to the same thing right ? different wire sizes... Why couldn't a person just use a old strand for a cord??SORRY I'M JUST TRYING TO UNDERSTAND THIS ?????????????  SORRY, I didn't mean to start a argument..

Yes 00.3 would work but stop and think about how many people would stop there?  My dum dum neighbor pluged in strand after strand in the same line and couldn't understand why his breaker was tripping,,,I went over there and saw charred wood behind his wooden Christmas Tree the insulation was melted off and the bare wire was exposed and luckly no real damage but there had to be a small fire there.

If I understand you correctly your saying to use a old strand of lights instead of an extention cord ?  I don't even want to answer that .....all I say is ask the UL Labratories and see what they say.

MY WHOLE POINT  IS........... IT'S BETTER BEING SAFE THAN SORRY!!!   WE don't want to end up on the evening news as a Christmas Tragedy by buy trying to save a few cents.

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  • 1 month later...

Question....I use sp2 wire, has anyone ever used the plugs off of old nonworking x-mas lights by soldering them then putting heat shrink tape on them instead of vampire plugs when you in a pinch. Then the sp2 wire would be fused to....Would this work????? 

 

I think solder + heat shrink tape + more of your time = a higher cost than buying a few more of the correct plugs.

 

UL has not approved 24 gauge wiring for use in light strings for years........22 gauge is the most common{and minimum allowed by UL},with 3 amp fuses in the plug,and 20 gauge with 5 amp fuses is used in commercial or heavy duty light strings.

 

The 20 or 22 gauge will not carry as much of a load as 18 gauge zip cord.  It would be important to keep that in mind when using cords made with the plugs from Christmas lights.

 

OK I'm using LED'S , I have a AMP/WATT tester. The AMP'S being drawn are 00.3. Just using the male end ,Wouldn't you think the fuses would blow b/4 the wire got to hot to melt and electrocuted someone? I understand your concern gmac..But now I'm wondering why some say it's ok...and you say it's not... I don't see my factory x-mas light wires causing any problems, What would the difference be between extension cord and connecting them to the same thing right ? different wire sizes... Why couldn't a person just use a old strand for a cord??SORRY I'M JUST TRYING TO UNDERSTAND THIS ?????????????  SORRY, I didn't mean to start a argument..

 

Your factory Christmas light wires aren't carrying the load of an 18 gauge extension cord.  I think the point is that using the Christmas light plugs will reduce the load that zip cord could normally carry.  There was a thread about how to convert old strings into extension cords.  The person who was doing it was only going to use them for LED sets so it would be a small load.

 

TED

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I use old light strands as extension cords all the time, my husband is an electrician and he says as long as i don't go over the load for the cord, i can use them, i plug 1 reindeer into an old cord and run it to the big extension cord. It saves us money on cords and when i plug to much into the light cord he lets me know. He says as long you watch what your plugging into them they are fine, after a few years of using one we throw it away.

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Either way you go, you need to watch your amperage. If you are using un-fused vampire plugs and zipcord, there's no built-in device that would prevent you from overloading that cord to the point of failure. If you replace the vamp plug with a snipped plug using #20 or #22 wire, you've effectively reduced the ampacity of the cord. In theory, the fuses should provide some protection, but you have introduced a weak link into your cord.

 

There are risks either way, but careful load management and good workmanship would most likely minimize those risks.

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