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Thread: Cord AWG size for big routers

  1. #1
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    Sep 2016
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    Modesto, CA, USA
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    Cord AWG size for big routers

    I need to replace the cords on two big PC routers. 120 volts about 15 amps. I see awg from #16 -12 sold. Seems like #14 should be minimum. But I suppose #16 would survive in hand held intermittent use.
    Bill D

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2022
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    Athens WV
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    #14 SO Cable is rated for 15 amps so it seems that would be the right choice. On the other hand how often are the routers going to pull full load and for how long? In any case I'd be looking for a heavy duty cord that will hold up.
    Robert

  3. #3
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    Jun 2015
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    Fairfield County, CT
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    14 ga minimum, 12 is overkill (but what I would use…).

    You probably want SJOOW cordage for this.

  4. #4
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    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
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    Don't try to improve on the size that was in there to start with. There is no extra room in the handle where it routes to the switch for larger wires. If the strain relief part is not separate from the cord, I'd get one that fits properly. There are a bunch of different types of strain relievers, and only the proper one will fit right. Check on Amazon for replacement cords. I just bought one not long ago for an old Milwaukee 15 amp side grinder off Amazon, and it fit perfectly.

    There are aftermarket companies that sell them with all the wires already the correct length with the correct crimped on ends on the cords.
    Last edited by Tom M King; 11-03-2023 at 7:40 PM.

  5. #5
    I would also get the OEM replacement or equvilant aftermarket. I've done it several times when rehabbing tools. Going heavier won't get you anywhere.

  6. #6
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    Mar 2003
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    I agree with the above for getting a "proper" replacement since fitting inside the tool with good strain relief is paramount. Going heavier can be a mistake if it needs force fitting and can cause undue physical strain on components besides who needs a cord that weights more and stores less well than a lighter one. Oversize is good for a long extension cord but does nothing for a 6' tool cord.

  7. #7
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    Mar 2019
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    While the factory spec might be 16ga., it is such a short length that there would be no current loss or overheating. Use the factory spec cord.
    Regards,

    Tom

  8. #8
    have those routers and cables on them is, at least on the easiest one to read.

    CAROL 14/2 90C (UL) WATER RESISTANT SJOW CSA (-40 C ) FT-s F-7K-123033 MSHA MADE in the USA 300V

  9. #9
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    I was finally able to read the cord on one, it is #14. So I will go with that.
    It confused me since it said 14/2 but it is a grounded cord. I thought cord counted every wire while cable ignored the ground wire.
    Bill D
    Last edited by Bill Dufour; 11-04-2023 at 1:00 PM.

  10. #10
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    Just found out I can buy the rubber strain relief cord things online for about one dollar each. Much cheaper then buying them molded onto cords.
    Bill D.

  11. #11
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    I keep an assortment of those too, having a bunch of oddball old power tools. Some have round keeper ends, and some square. With some of my old tools that still work, I've needed to trim one or the other to fit. At least the hole sizes fit available cords. I like to use some variation of SO cord over SJ. The SO lasts longer for me than the Service Junior ones, and I expect that's why there is a price difference.

    If the cord is already made up with the crimped on eyelets, I'll pay extra for those.

  12. #12
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    Millstone, NJ
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    How long is the cord?

  13. #13
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    Feb 2009
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    Cedar Park, TX - Boulder Creek, CA
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    825
    I buy extension cords and cut off whatever end I dont need. Nice molded plugs/recep'. And usually cheaper then buying a length of cord and a clamp-on P/R. Never mind half the work of cutting/stripping.

  14. #14
    #14 will be fine, as the OEM cordsets only have 15 amp plugs on them.

  15. #15
    SOJ is max 300 volts, SO is 600 volts

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