Pin And Sleeve

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I am working at an army post in New Mexico and we have a lot of portable trucks and equipment that we plug in outdoors.
Our service power at the post is (120/208 3 phase) (Y).
I am being told to install four pin & sleeve type devices, not five pin type.
This four pin device as I understand them is three hot conductors L1, L2, L3,
and a ground. (no neutral)
Whereas the five pin device are L1, L2, L3, ground and a neutral.
I need help to clarify this and any publications you can recommend to me.

Thank you, 08/18/09
Tom Schreck

Rick Christopherson

Senior Member
Your service is 5-wire 120/208, but that does not mean that your trucks and equipment are 5-wire. If these loads are 208-delta (with no phase-to-neutral loads), then no, you do not need to carry the neutral to them. However, if these loads do in fact have phase-to-neutral loads (120/208), then yes, you do need to use 5-wire P&S devices.


Senior Member
Being a military application, the exsisting plugs may be non-grounding, designed to work with the military portable generators, some of our military or ex-military posters may know the answer to this question.
I have been in the military 22 years now, some active, mostly guard. All of our shelters are grounded through the plugs and cables. In addition it is a requirement to drive 3 ground rods at each shelter in a diamond configuration, tie this to the external groung lug on the shelter and also pull a groung cable from the diamond back to a central ground system located at the generator farm. I can't speak for all branches, I am Air Force, and I can't speak for all units, but I have been in several different units and this seems to be the standard.


Thanks for your info,
Yes these loads do have phase-to-neutral loads (120/208).
So if I am understanding this then it would be unsafe and/or improper to use a four pin &
sleeve regardless.
Tom Schreck


Dayton, OH
Is it possible the connector type is grounded through part of the shell, not by a pin? I believe Hubbell Insulgrip Style 1 devices do just that. A-B-C-Neutral with ground built into the connector.


Senior Member
Durham, NC
On the front page of the hosts web page, on the left side,
"Grounding verses Bonding"
there is a free Grounding and Bonding-Department of U.S. Army (Febr. 2002)
Size is about 3.8MB
This is 183 pages full of electrical applications, new or old facilities, forms and
It was written for:

Grounding and Bonding in Command, Control, Communications, Computer,
Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) Facilities.

Now I realize that this is not exactly what your asking for but the references start at page 158, maybe one of your requirements might be listed there.

Like some of these:

DOD Instruction 6055.11
Protection of DoD Personnel from Exposure to Radiofrequency Radiation
[Cited in paragraph 4-3c(8)]

Grounding, Bonding and Shielding for Common Long Haul/Tactical Communication Systems
Including Ground Based Communications-Electronics Facilities and Equipment
[Cited in paragraph 3-3c(2), 3-5c(1)(g), 6-2b(4)(a), 6-4a(3)]

Red/Black Engineering-Installation Guidelines
[Cited in paragraph 4-3e]

Grounding, Bonding, and Shielding for Electronic Equipment and Facilities
[Cited in paragraph 3-2j(8)]

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