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Old 01-21-2015, 05:18 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by FollySteve View Post
Admittedly, I know just enough about electrical systems to be dangerous, but I do know from residential wiring jobs long ago that 30 amp is a 110 volt circuit and 50 amp is 220 volt. And I know that 220 volt is achieved at the service panel by utilizing two positive 110 leads and one neutral (plus ground for safety) and 110 volt only uses one positive lead. So, when using the 30 to 50 amp adapter, how does it achieve the required 220 volts?
Both the 30A and 50A connedctors being discussed here are 120V. There is no 240V on Airstream trailers.
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Old 01-21-2015, 05:18 PM   #16
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Be careful. There is a bit of difference between Marine vs RV fittings.
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Old 01-21-2015, 05:22 PM   #17
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This is an interesting thread. So if I am understanding correctly it is OK to plug a 30 amp AS into a 50 amp out let if you use an adapter.Is there a problem with using the AC or any of the other appliances?

Thanks, Reg
Yes, you can do this. Just remember that, if you plug your 30A trailer into a 50A source, the 50A circuit breaker at the source will not protect your trailer; the 30A master breaker in the trailer's electrical panel will provide proper protection. The only portion of this setup that's at risk is the 30A cord between the trailer and the source.
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Old 01-21-2015, 05:23 PM   #18
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Hope I get this correct. In an AS that has 50amps in reality you have a split system. One leg of the 50amps/125V goes to circuit 1 and the other leg goes to circuit 2. Each circuit has one of the A/C units on it plus other 'stuff'. You can look at the manual or the CB panel to determine which devices/outlets are on each circuit.

Just an assumption since I don't have my Classic yet but the adapter pigtails must put power to both circuits. Limitation would be that you only have a total of 30amps across both circuits. Should be able to run everything except 2 A/C units at the same time.

And no 220/240 in the trailer as has been mentioned.
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Old 01-21-2015, 05:29 PM   #19
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Be careful. There is a bit of difference between Marine vs RV fittings.
The twist-lock fitting at the trailer is a standard NEMA connector, which is also used on boat shore power cords. The three-pronged plug at the other end of the cord is also NEMA standard, but is not used on boat cords. Frankly, neither of these connectors is ideal for either marine or RV use, but the standard is well-established so that's what gets used.

fyi, NEMA: National Electrical Manufacturers' Association.

Also, fyi, there is now a new connector type that is approved for marine use. Also being marketed for RV use. Better, safer, also not inexpensive.

SmartPlug Systems - Shore Power Products and Accessories
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Old 01-21-2015, 05:57 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by FollySteve View Post
Admittedly, I know just enough about electrical systems to be dangerous, but I do know from residential wiring jobs long ago that 30 amp is a 110 volt circuit and 50 amp is 220 volt. And I know that 220 volt is achieved at the service panel by utilizing two positive 110 leads and one neutral (plus ground for safety) and 110 volt only uses one positive lead. So, when using the 30 to 50 amp adapter, how does it achieve the required 220 volts?
Your right on most of what you said ,( regarding house electrical )but the airstream is 120 volt and either 30 amp service or 50 amp service 120 volt . Never 220 volt in North Americans airstreams . (Im sure they make airstreams with higher voltage for other countries.)220 volts will damage the electrical system in the trailer and any component pluged in to outlets plugs.


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Old 01-21-2015, 06:29 PM   #21
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Perhaps I have misunderstood. You cannot run two AC's with a 30amp service and or cord. If your question is only to run one AC then yes you can get an adapter and run only 30 amp service into your trailer. Also, Marinco offers a 50 amp cord which they claim is much more pliable then the cords most of us are using. They still would be somewhat heavy I am sure.
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Old 01-21-2015, 06:54 PM   #22
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And then there is the Smartplug SmartPlug Shore Power Product Lines that is gaining a small following. Switching isn't cheap, but might be worth it for some.

To answer the OP, if you have a coach that is set up for 50A service, you have two 50A lines coming into your coach. In a Newell, you will use the 240V, but offhand I don't know of any other coaches that use that. An Airstream, and most coaches, only use the two 120 lines. You will have a total of 12,000 watts available for your use. If you only want to use 30A, you can use a 30A to 50A dogbone (adapter) that will still use your regular cord. That adapter goes between the power pedestal and your power cord. Since you want to use a lighter 30A cord, and your coach has a 50A connector, you will need to use a different adapter, one that goes between the 30A cord and your coach.
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:04 PM   #23
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OK, I understand that the 50/240 service is utilized as two separate 120 volt circuits. Does that mean that If you use the 30/120 adapter that half of the circuits in the Airstream will not receive power? Thanks for the info: this is good stuff to know.
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:23 PM   #24
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No. The dogbone that plugs into the 30A outlet on the power pedestal connects the hot wire to both hot terminals so that you get power to all circuits in the coach. The catch is that you have only 30A (3600W) of power. If you want to use a 30A cord and an adapter between the cord and the coach you will still have the same 30A (3600W) of power to all circuits.
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:25 PM   #25
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Got it. Thanks for the education.
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Old 01-21-2015, 07:34 PM   #26
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Amazon has 30amp to 50 amp cords from 55 to 125 dollars and it would be easier to move around if not running 2 ac's
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Old 01-21-2015, 08:29 PM   #27
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The original post stated that only one a/c would be running.
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Old 01-21-2015, 09:42 PM   #28
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Using 30A cord with 50A shore power terminal

This has probably been beaten into submission by the previous excellent comments. We've just come off the road yesterday and found ourselves using several combinations of power cords and adapters on the last trip. Here's the story:

- first stop was a full 50A hookup. Wrestled the monster power cord out of the storage locker and connected it directly.

- second stop, only power available was a 30A receptacle but it was farther away then either my 50A power cord or 30A extension. Solution?
Attach 50A power cord to trailer, insert << 50 amp female to 30 amp male >> adapter. (Use this string for your Google search and a whole bunch of possibilities pop up.) Then connect 30A extension cord. Consider covering the adapter to protect it from the weather. Plug the 30A power cord into the receptacle.

- third stop. The 30A receptacle was within reach of my 30A extension cord. Insert << 50 Amp locking pigtail to 30 amp male plug >> into trailer power receptacle. Attach 30A extension cord and plug into 30A receptacle.

- back at home. When I don't need 30 amps of power but do want to keep the refrigerator alive on electric power I will use a 20A extension cord connected to the house power. (In time I hope to put a 30A or 50A receptacle at the driveway but that's for the future.) Working out from the trailer that would be the same as above at the third stop but at the end of the 30A power cord insert a << 30 Amp female to 20 Amp male adapter >>. Plug in to your 20A extension cord. Be veeeery careful about power draw from the trailer. "It could be bad."

And so on. As noted above it's critical not to overload the power source.

Have fun.
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