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Thread: 110-220 Volt Definition

  1. #1

    110-220 Volt Definition

    There have been several electrical discussions recently. After many hours of intense research, I finally can provide the TRUTH!!!
    Now everyone can possess the whole of human knowledge on the subject
    (Actually, I stole this off another site)[)]

    I think its time for me to explain about 220 current and why it is so different from 110 volt service. First of all, it's twice as big.

    Secondly, it'll shock you more. Outside of that, 220 is really two 110 volt lines coming to your house from different parts of the globe.

    The up and down 110 comes from the northern hemisphere, and the down and up version comes from below the equator.

    Without trying to get technical, it all boils down to the direction water flows when it goes down the drain. In the top of the earth, it goes clockwise, while on the bottom of the earth it goes counter clockwise. Since most electricity is made from hydro dams, the clockwise flow gives you an up and down sine wave, while the counterclockwise version gives you a down and up sine wave. Between the two, you have 220 volts, while either individual side only gives you 110 volts.

    This is partiularly important to know when buying power tools- which side of the globe did they come from? If you get an Australian saw, for instance, it will turn backwards if connected to a US generated 110 volt source. Sure, you can buy backwards blades for it, but that is an unnecessary burden. Other appliances, like toasters cannot be converted from Australian electricity to American electricity, without horrible results. I knew one person who bought an Australian toaster by mistake and it froze the slices of bread she put in it.

    If you wire your shop with 220 and accidentally get two US-generated 110 volt lines run in by accident, you can get 220 by using a trick I learned from an old electrician. Just put each source into its own fuse box and then turn one of the boxes upside down. That'll invert one of the two up and down sine waves to down and up, giving you 220. DO NOT just turn the box sideways, since that'll give you 165 volts and you'll be limited to just using Candian tools with it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    San Marcos, TX, USA.
    After 2 hours on a pressure washer trying to clean the engine parts and bay on my truck, I needed that!
    Don, aka Pappy,

    Wise men talk because they have something to say,
    Fools because they have to say something.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Paw Paw, MI, USA.
    I think you have it Ken!
    Monte (another darksider)
    Reporting Live from somewhere near Kalamazoo

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Copiague, New York, USA.
    But why can't I ever get new electricity, whenever I get the bill from the power company, it states electricity used. I want new electricity!!! And since it's A.C. current does it go back to them, & do they sell me the same electricity over again, is that what they mean used?
    It's got to be us, because there are a lot more of them!

  5. #5
    Oh - so that's how it works
    Ken Weaver
    Clemson, SC

    "A mistake is absolute proof that someone tried to do something!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Chattanooga, TN.
    I count 7 rules/laws broken, who's got eight?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Burlington, Ontario, Canada.
    I can vouch for the 165 volts here

    Oh, yeah ... to clarify, water at the equator just drops straight down the drain ...

    Flexible people don\'t get bent out of shape.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    quote:Originally posted by stewchi

    I count 7 rules/laws broken, who's got eight?
    Did you count the clockwise/counter-clockwise spinning water, even fools some science teachers, example of bad science?


    "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects."
    --- Robert A. Heinlein

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Advance, NC, USA.
    You guys have entirely "[u]TOO MUCH</u>" free time on your hands.

    Dave in NC
    Stress is when you wake up screaming and then you realize you haven't fallen asleep yet.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2005
    canoe, british columbia, Canada.

    165 in canada? WHAT PART?!*

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