Swapping power cord plug types...

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Forum topic by kylecomeaux posted 02-09-2015 04:30 AM 919 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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9 posts in 875 days

02-09-2015 04:30 AM

I’m electrically ignorant…

I have a 220v table saw with a NEMA 6-20 plug type. I’d like to plug it into the dryer outlet which is a 10-30 type. Would I be able to replace the power cord on the table saw to match the outlet?

The current 6-20 power cord is only 6’ in length, so it would need to be extended regardless.


7 replies so far

View mcg1990's profile


158 posts in 715 days

#1 posted 02-09-2015 04:50 AM

Yes, in fact that’s what a lot of power tools (used to?) require. They’d expect you to wire your own head to the power cord as so many people plug them into so many different things. I just bought an 8” jointer with a range head on it, but rather than change the cord I just changed the outlet to a flush stove outlet – prettier than the big black boxes. You can do whatever is easiest for you, providing you can safely do the wiring involved.

View kylecomeaux's profile


9 posts in 875 days

#2 posted 02-09-2015 05:28 AM

So, would you say that power tools like these do not require specific plug types, as long as its the correct voltage?

View REO's profile


883 posts in 1496 days

#3 posted 02-09-2015 11:49 AM

|Typically the current protection IE breaker, Fuse. is for the hidden wiring and not for the protection of what you plug in. If you want protection specific to the machine you will have to install fuses or a breaker at the saw.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3848 posts in 1916 days

#4 posted 02-09-2015 12:04 PM

I think what I would do is make an extension that plugs into the dryer outlet, and then has a Nema 6-20 receptacle on the other end. I would be the OEM cord is 14-3, but I think I would use 12-3 on the extension . The plugs are specific to voltage, but also to amperage. Hence the 6-20 is a 20 amp plug, while a 6-15 (the 2 flat stabs are aligned, instead of one vertical and one horizontal) is for 15 amps. The dryer outlet (obviously) is rated at 30 amps.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View bonesbr549's profile


1137 posts in 2489 days

#5 posted 02-09-2015 02:25 PM

Ok, not all power tools even come with a plug. I remember the Griz 1023slx did not come with a plug, and my Sawstop did not even come with a cord.

The Main Rule of thumb is remember the AMP rating. So if it’s 6/20 that was a type plug for a 20A rated circuit. Minimum Gauge wire would be 12AWG, the receptacle should be at a minimum 20A rated, and the breaker minimum 20A rated.

Your dryer plug has two hots, a neutral, and a ground. That’s so they can supply 220V for the heating element and 110, for the electronics

You could use your dryer line if you had to (as long as the wife is not doing laundry while you are cutting wood). Just know which leads are your hots and wire the plug accordingly(don’t forget the ground). As to how long a cord you can use, that depends.

How far are you from the dryer outlet, and then how far is the dryer outlet from the panel! Unless that’s a very long run, you will be fine. My first house I had to do that till I could run a sub-panel for my little shop.

You can go to Lowes/HD and get 12 or 10 AWG flexible cable and use that. I built several generator cables with it and it’s oil resistant flexible and makes great cord. If you catch one of the 10AWG contractor extension cables on sale that will work as well, just cut the plugs off and use that.

The most important thing is you cannot downsize the wiring below minimum i.e, run a 20A rated machine on a 15A wire (14AWG), that will cause heat and fire.

Good luck.

-- Sooner or later Liberals run out of other people's money.

View kylecomeaux's profile


9 posts in 875 days

#6 posted 02-09-2015 05:40 PM

Thanks for the answers!
I’m debating now weather or not to make an extension cord, or to make a whole new power cord.

The length it would need to be is around 15-20 ft. for it to be a whole new power cord. The power cord it comes with is 6’, so if I made an ‘extension cord’, it would need to be around 10 ft.

I wonder if it would be better to use 10 guage wire if it were to be more than 15’ length.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3848 posts in 1916 days

#7 posted 02-09-2015 06:43 PM

Not really….12-3 would easily handle the saw’s load over that distance. Did you check the OEM cord? It should be imprinted on the side of the wrap, and I’ll bet it’s 14-3.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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