# IEC 320 C-14 receptacle questions

#### Citywide EV

Joined Jan 3, 2019
11
Hello All,
I design & build electric go karts.
So far, I have built some that run @ 24V, some @ 36V , some @ 48V & now I am starting to get into 60V systems.

For the last year or so, I have been using these little 48V 2.5A battery chargers. (~$15.00) https://www.ebay.com/itm/48V-Output...m=142209334999&_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851 ...to charge the (4) 12V 12AH SLA batteries on my 48V karts, These chargers have a standard (2) prong 110VAC input plug & come with a IEC 320 C-13 output plug, for connecting to the battery pack. ...but, they don't come with a matching C-14 receptacle. (for mounting on the kart & connecting to the battery pack) So, I have just been using regular C-14 power cord receptacles, that are readily available (~$5.00)
https://www.ebay.com/itm/1PC-10A-25...h=item466a9f1180:g:WhYAAOSwBLdZqZDk:rk:1:pf:0
...without any problems. They never even got warm, I checked several times.

But, they are usually only used for attaching power cords to home appliances
...& as such they have only been tested for & rated for AC voltage. (250VAC 10A)

Now moving up to 60VDC, I would like to try-n-confirm that these C-14 receptacles are up to the task
…& can handle ~60VDC @ 2.5A.

These 60V 2.5A chargers also plug in to a standard wall socket & come with a C-13 DC output plug. (~\$17.00)
https://www.ebay.com/itm/60V-20AH-E...e=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

It looks to me like a C-14 receptacle (rated 250VAC) is basically just a couple of conductors mounted in a plastic housing.

So, I guess my question is, are wires/cables/conductors "voltage specific"?
...for conductors, does it matter if it's AC voltage or DC voltage running thru it?

#### Hymie

Joined Mar 30, 2018
948
The C14 appliance couplers should not have any problem handling 60Vdc at 2.5A, and the wires/cables/conductors can handle ac or dc for their rated voltage/current.

However dc voltages can create an arc for an extended period at a switch or disconnect device, therefore I’d recommend you avoid hot connection/disconnection when passing dc through the appliance couplers.

But a much bigger concern is the use of these IEC 60320 mains couplers on a low voltage circuit – clearly there is the possibility that someone will accidentally connect the battery circuit to the mains, which might very well cause an explosion/fire or electric shock hazard. Product safety standards would not permit the use of these connectors as used in these chargers.

If you must use these appliance couplers, I would strongly advise that you place a prominent warning close to the charging connection socket and control/limit access to the karts (especially children).
If you are selling the karts you are making (or even giving them away), you could shortly find yourself in jail as a result of injury to someone.

#### bertus

Joined Apr 5, 2008
21,168
Hello,

As @Hymie said, It would give a disasterous effect when a mains power is plugged into the cart.
The IEC connectors should only be used for mains, in my opinion.

There are many of those connectors as in the youtube overview:

For low voltage and high current have a look at power pole connectors:
https://powerwerx.com/anderson-power-powerpole-sb-connectors

Bertus

#### Citywide EV

Joined Jan 3, 2019
11
My karts are for personal/family use.

I also thought it seemed like, for them, to be using a C-13 plug as a DCV output plug, on battery chargers was a bad idea.

I could see where it would be possible for someone to simply plug in a 110VAC power cord to the C-14 receptacle.
...which would directly connect 110VAC to the 48VDC battery pack. TOTALLY NOT GOOD!

Then, why would these battery chargers come equipped with a C-13 DC output plug?

What would be more appropriate?
...something like an XLR type connector?
...suggestions?

Here is a pic of one of my 48V karts

Thanks, again

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#### jpanhalt

Joined Jan 18, 2008
11,088
I second power pole connectors. I use them when I need a high current DC connection, as for a winch. One nice thing is that neither the housing nor contacts are gendered, male or female are the same (at least for the ones I use). They have a robust "wiping" connection.

As an inferior alternative, the standard 15A /220V plug and sockets can be used. That is uncommon in the US and it is, according to what I have read, commonly used for 12V by the RV crowd.

#### Hymie

Joined Mar 30, 2018
948
I would recommend you use a connector pair from this series, which are primarily for rc model charging.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AMASS-BL...42651027324?hash=item2136a9ef7c:rk:1:pf:0&var

You will need to cut the C14 connector from the charger and attach the female XT connector. Make sure you get the polarity of the plug & socket correct.

Call me a spoil-sport, but I would consider guarding the exposed kart drive (motor shaft/gear, chain and rear drive gear); these parts are inviting loose clothing or stray fingers to become tangled/mangled therein.

#### Citywide EV

Joined Jan 3, 2019
11
Thanks for the XT connector suggestion.
I already have some 2-pin Molex connectors.
Their specs are 250V AC/DC ~10A (if used with 18g. wire)
...my requirements are 60VDC ~2.5A.
They don't look as elegant but, should do.

The Torsk kart is still a "work in progress"
...but, a chain guard is definitely on the agenda.