# calculation for power cable length for Electric chain saw

#### redsquash

What is the calculation to perfom, to work out the maximum cable distance a 2.2kw electric chainaw can operate.
I have a 15amp tradesmans cable from Bunnings with a cable length of 30 metres and 2 others of 20 m each, that are also 15amp.

I have been advised that over 50 m I could be facing problems but I cant get much more specific information from the agents.
The answer is somewhere between 25m and 50 m but more information would be very much appreciated.
Thanks

#### RumpledElf

Being one of those people who used to chain half a dozen or more very long powercords together (my backyard was 100m long at my previous house) to use a corded drill before finally getting around to buying a cordless, I say just do it and see if it still works. Just make sure no OH&S people are looking

This is actually the reason one of my criteria for my 'dream house' is 'block must be as close to square as possible with the house in the centre'. I've had too many issues with powercords and hoses over the years to want another long, skinny block.

#### vincenzo

There will be no problem at all since you are using 240v 15a rated = 3600w tradesman/quality/tough cables, with a load of 2200w.

Worst case scenario here would be that your chainsaw can't use 2200w of power, but only approximately 2175w, because of the extra resistance from the additional leads. So you may possibly notice it running with a tad less power than if it was plugged directly into a power point, but you probably won't since the cables are nice and beefy. Rumpledelf may have noticed a slight power loss in her scenario since she was using ~100m of leads, but maybe not since most drills are under 1000w.

The only way you'd be able to make the leads even feel a little warm, is if you were using 10a 2400w leads with a ~2800w device = overloading the leads.

I'd say your biggest problem would be if any moisture gets in the connectors, so if there's a chance of that, just run a few loops of tape around each one, take care using the chainsaw, and have a happy new year

BV

#### RumpledElf

Is this a good time to mention I blew up that particular drill? I decided to buy a much more expensive one next time (after blowing up* several \$50 drills) and it is still going strong 6 years later. We blew up the light driver we bought for laying flooring here within 3 months but that wasn't rated for more than 'domestic' use and we did buy it as a throwaway because we wanted something light. I honestly doubt running chained power cords had anything to do with any appliance's demise but it sounds good

Didn't notice a whit of power loss just driving in fencing screws and making holes for bolts, and back then I had pretty crappy extension leads. Chainsaw? Hrm. What are you cutting? We run extension cords for various power tools so often one of ours is a ridiculously long heavy duty one, so we never need to chain them at the new house. You can also get an electrician mate to rig you up an ultra-heavy duty one out of the appropriate length of cord and two ends so you have no joining at all, also reduces risk of the cords coming undone. Just think how long some of the leads in your *house* are, from your meter box to the powerpoints waaaaay at the back.

*flames come out the vents and they stop working

#### BV

redsquash

I agree with Vincenzo, the volts will get lower as you get away from the outlet but it should be fine.

Lower voltage won't harm it but take care not to overheat it because with lower RPM's there will be lesser air circulating through the housing.

Also, just let the motor spin nicely and go easy on it so that it doesn't stall on you. What are you cutting?

#### 65fbk

What matters is the cross sectional area of the copper conductors in the extension leads. An extension lead sold as "15A" means it has a plug and socket to accommodate the larger earth terminal found in 15A GPO's, but the conductors could be 1.5mm^2 to 2.5mm^2. Was it cheap?

Be careful, as excessive voltage drop will cause a lack of grunt, overload and hence overheat the appliance.

I'll scan and post a voltage drop table for you, but you will need to know your conductor size. Have a close look, it may be imprinted in the insulation or marked elsewhere.

#### Rolf Latham

what matters is ya could consider a 2 stroke saw

with them starting at around 150 to 200 they can be a lot less hassle than an electric if you need portability on a bigger block

I live on a place where we have a fair bit of use for a saw, and the 2 stroke is a great thing,

Having said all that, the chain on the saw is probably more important in the end .....

ta
rolf

#### vincenzo

Is this a good time to mention I blew up that particular drill? I decided to buy a much more expensive one next time (after blowing up* several \$50 drills) and it is still going strong 6 years later. We blew up the light driver we bought for laying flooring here within 3 months but that wasn't rated for more than 'domestic' use and we did buy it as a throwaway because we wanted something light. I honestly doubt running chained power cords had anything to do with any appliance's demise but it sounds good

Didn't notice a whit of power loss just driving in fencing screws and making holes for bolts, and back then I had pretty crappy extension leads....

*flames come out the vents and they stop working

You said you didn't notice a whit of power loss, so we can assume that the drill was operating at approximately full speed, since you would have noticed a difference even in the sound/pitch if it wasn't, so cooling or overloads/insufficient power were not an issue. Extension cords won't help make a weak drill last forever unfortunately

What matters is the cross sectional area of the copper conductors in the extension leads. An extension lead sold as "15A" means it has a plug and socket to accommodate the larger earth terminal found in 15A GPO's, but the conductors could be 1.5mm^2 to 2.5mm^2. Was it cheap?

Be careful, as excessive voltage drop will cause a lack of grunt, overload and hence overheat the appliance.

Redsquash did say he had a "15amp tradesmans cable from Bunnings" and "2 others of 20 m each, that are also 15amp." which i assume are also the same, thick, tough, chunky things you find at bunnings. I bet the diameter of the cable's core is about double the cross sectional area you'd find in your average domestic extension lead But even if his conductors are thin, he's driving 2200w, so he'd probably need to use more than ten x 10a extension leads, before the voltage drop would be so great as to notice any reductions in rpms and power levels.

#### RumpledElf

what matters is ya could consider a 2 stroke saw
I was waiting for someone to say this lol

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