Fixing a cord?

socksNovember 23, 2009

Can these wires be re-attached in a safe way? It's the cord for a clock radio. One end of the wire goes to the clock radio, the other to the adapter/plug.

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macv

No, they cannot be spliced safely. Buy a new cord and install it properly at the radio or buy a new radio.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 8:49AM
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socks

I guess I'll have to get a new radio. Sony wants about $60 to fix it (I guess they actually send me a refurbished one), and that's about the price of a new one, so why bother with that. Thank you for replying.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 9:02AM
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macv

Is it that difficult to open the case and replace the cord? I've done it many times.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 9:34AM
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sdello

Option 1) Get some wire nuts. make a connection and wrap the splice in electrical tape.

Option 2) Take it to someone that owns a soldering iron, solder the connection and put some heat shrink tubing or other insulator around it.

Option 3) If the wire to the radio has suffcient length, go the hardware store and buy a replacment plug and put a new plug on the cord.

FWIW, I think the best solution would be option 3 if you can live witht he shorter cord.

It's ludricrous to think that a 115V power cord cannot be spliced safely.

That's my opinion and I'm sticking to it.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 11:55AM
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randy427

I believe the 'adapter' is a 'wall-wart' transformer, with an output of somewhere from 9 to 24 volts, and there is no reason the wire cannot be safely spliced.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 3:05PM
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sdello

I hadn't noticed the OPs reference to an "adapter". randy's post is all the more reason to splice it rather than abandon the clock radio.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 7:04PM
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macv

If it's low voltage I'm sure the OP would have mentioned it in order to avoid wasting our time.

Certainly a power cord can be spliced but the question was about safety. If you want a better reference than internet wisdom you can rely on the NEC.

Under the National Electrical Code, you cannot repair (splice) a power cord unless it is a "hard service" (600v.) or "junior hard service" (300v.) type (i.e., S, SO*, SE*, SJ*, ST*).

You may not repair the following types: portable power cables (types G*, P*, W), heater cord (H*), vacuum cord (SV*), dryer and range cords (SRD*), or lamp cords (C, SP*). These unapproved types must be replaced from end to end if they are damaged.

The * means any other letters or numbers that appear in the type label on your cord after the prefix (e.g., SP* includes SPT-2W, SPT, SP-1, SPE).

If your house is damaged by fire (and you survive) you will want to be sure there is no evidence that it started at an illegal cord splice. When my next door neighbor's house burned, the arson squad tried to blame the faulty cord of an electric pencil sharpener and implied that it was intentional. Later they found that it was due to a temporary tap at the electric panel by a remodeling contractor.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2009 at 7:29PM
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brickeyee

"If your house is damaged by fire (and you survive) you will want to be sure there is no evidence that it started at an illegal cord splice."

You are insured against your own mistakes, including splicing a cord.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2009 at 8:52AM
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macv

I've never seen a small device power adapter that wasn't detachable from the device or that couldn't be replaced for $3 to $15. If this is, in fact, a low voltage cord, a splice would be acceptable as long as there is no possibility of combustible gasses in the room (like in a kitchen or basement). A poor low voltage splice can arc as easily as a poor 120 volt splice.

I believe the avoidance of loss is preferable to insurance compensation and many insurance policies only cover "unintentional" negligence. Negligence is normally defined as the failure to do what a prudent person would do under similar circumstances. Prudent is characterized as being careful and sensible; marked by sound judgment. I would consider the illegal splicing a 120 volt power cord to be both intentional and imprudent but a good lawyer could probably win the day in court. In my work the liability for imprudence is great so I try hard to avoid unnecessary risks and that influences my advice to those who ask my opinion.

Now I have to go fix some wiring conditions I have been putting off.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2009 at 10:24AM
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sierraeast

I've spent a lot of effort in the past "jerry rigging" things , sometimes with success, but more times than none, ending up "doing it right" which should have been th m.o. the first time around. You learn through experience. Go down to radio shack and get yourself a replacement cord. Do it right and be safe!

    Bookmark   November 24, 2009 at 11:50AM
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brickeyee

"...many insurance policies only cover "unintentional" negligence."

Unintentional in the context means you did not set a fire.

Since you did not splice the cord to create a fire, any fire would be unintentional.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2009 at 12:56PM
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macv

Whatever the insurance company might cover, it cannot stop another person from suing you for negligence and intent would not be a sufficient defense. To win such a suit it is only necessary to prove that there was a duty of care and that you failed to act as a reasonable person would have and that the breach of duty was the cause of an injury.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2009 at 7:27AM
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brickeyee

"Whatever the insurance company might cover, it cannot stop another person from suing you for negligence and intent would not be a sufficient defense. To win such a suit it is only necessary to prove that there was a duty of care and that you failed to act as a reasonable person would have and that the breach of duty was the cause of an injury."

So now you are going to sue yourself?

    Bookmark   November 25, 2009 at 9:28AM
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macv

You brought up insurance and it is irrelevant. Only a fool would spice a power cord and risk causing a fire in his home.

Are you now the forum ankle biter?

    Bookmark   November 25, 2009 at 10:11AM
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brickeyee

And you appear to be panic stricken fool.

I have spliced equipment on aircraft, ships, and buildings.

When correctly executed it is as reliable as the original cable.

When poorly done it is a fire hazard.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2009 at 2:56PM
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