Terminating a smaller wire awg into larger lug

Natfuelbilll

Senior Member
I'm looking into how to do this. I have a factory equipment power cord 4/C#16 SOOW cable that I need to connect into a 30A rated cord cap. The cord cap has a minimum conductor size of #10. The circuit is protected at 5 amps.

Any code compliant methods of "increasing" the #16 to a #10?
 

Frank DuVal

Senior Member
I do not know if this is NEC compliant, but manufacturers of terminals and the IPC training courses say to add conductor to the #16 to make it a #10.

Every three AWG numbers (and you do count the odds) doubles the capacity of the wire in amps. This is also doubling the cross section area. So, roughly two 16s is a 13, two 13s is a 10, therefore 4 #16s is a #10.

Now this works pretty good in a crimp connector. But, a screw plate or other screw type connector may be tricky to accomplish.

The result you want to see is tight connections, no ability for the #16 to pull out of the terminal when finished. TEST!
 

winnie

Senior Member
Not a code compliance issue, but rather a manufacturer's instruction compliance issue.

My first thought would be to check with difference suppliers of the same pattern cord cap that are rated for the smaller conductors.

My second thought is that most of these cord caps have pressure plates that squeeze the conductors. Have you simply tried them with the smaller conductor? Obviously this would 'violate' the manufacturer's instructions, but this may simply be because the units have not been tested for the smaller conductors.

Reading between the lines I assume you are using a 30A cord cap and receptacle on a 5A circuit for some coding or mechanical reason. Could you change both to something rated for lower current?

-Jon
 

Jraef

Moderator
Staff member
A 30A cord cap is for plugging into a 30A receptacle which will be protected by a 30A breaker (or fuse). Might it be that the reason there is no method of connecting 16ga wire into a 30A cord cap is because you should not be able to do something so dangerous?
 

hbiss

EC, Westchester, New York NEC: 2014
I have a factory equipment power cord 4/C#16 SOOW cable that I need to connect into a 30A rated cord cap.
Sez who, you or the manufacturer? If it's a factory supplied power cord, what plug is on it now? 5-15P I'll bet.

Jraef said:
A 30A cord cap is for plugging into a 30A receptacle which will be protected by a 30A breaker (or fuse). Might it be that the reason there is no method of connecting 16ga wire into a 30A cord cap is because you should not be able to do something so dangerous?
Read this again, then replace the receptacle and breaker!

-Hal
 

gadfly56

Senior Member
A 30A cord cap is for plugging into a 30A receptacle which will be protected by a 30A breaker (or fuse). Might it be that the reason there is no method of connecting 16ga wire into a 30A cord cap is because you should not be able to do something so dangerous?
Did you read the part where he said the circuit is protected at 5 amps?
 

hbiss

EC, Westchester, New York NEC: 2014
gadfly56 said:
Did you read the part where he said the circuit is protected at 5 amps?
Where? In the equipment? That doesn't protect the #16 power cord does it?

-Hal
 

al hildenbrand

Senior Member
Where? In the equipment? That doesn't protect the #16 power cord does it?

-Hal
Hal, it's in the OP.
I'm looking into how to do this. I have a factory equipment power cord 4/C#16 SOOW cable that I need to connect into a 30A rated cord cap. The cord cap has a minimum conductor size of #10. The circuit is protected at 5 amps.

Any code compliant methods of "increasing" the #16 to a #10?
 

al hildenbrand

Senior Member
I don't think the OP is clear on this point. I too would like to know where this 5-amp protection is located, I bet in the equipment.
Why? The words used include "factory", "equipment", "power drop", "30 Amp rated", and "circuit is protected". He doesn't say "the equipment is protected". And he is using terms in a cogent querry, and the terms are not out of place, in my opinion.
 

oldsparky52

Senior Member
Why? The words used include "factory", "equipment", "power drop", "30 Amp rated", and "circuit is protected". He doesn't say "the equipment is protected". And he is using terms in a cogent querry, and the terms are not out of place, in my opinion.
So you are thinking someone ran a 30-amp circuit to a 30-amp receptacle and installed a 5-amp breaker?
 

al hildenbrand

Senior Member
So you are thinking someone ran a 30-amp circuit to a 30-amp receptacle and installed a 5-amp breaker?
No. I'm understanding an overhead run of busway above a factory floor that has been there long before the particular piece of equipment arrived.

There is an existing drop, RATED at 30 Amps, from the busway, in the area of the new piece of equipment in question.

The Over Current Circuit Protection, probably fuses, has been changed to 5 Amp, to protect the piece of equipment, and the branch circuit left otherwise unchanged.
 

hbiss

EC, Westchester, New York NEC: 2014
No. I'm understanding an overhead run of busway above a factory floor that has been there long before the particular piece of equipment arrived.

There is an existing drop, RATED at 30 Amps, from the busway, in the area of the new piece of equipment in question.

The Over Current Circuit Protection, probably fuses, has been changed to 5 Amp, to protect the piece of equipment, and the branch circuit left otherwise unchanged.
Hey, it could happen. :blink:

-Hal
 
Top