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Thread: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

  1. #1

    Default Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    Hi

    Due to Australia's use of 240 volt 50 cycle power standard most items sourced overseas are a hassle as either UK or USA plugs are provided. With the advert of the internet a lot of suppliers from China and Hong Kong are shipping items with adaptors rather than dedicated power plugs even if you clearly state they must be compatible with Australian power points and voltage.

    No issue with a high quality adapter but AW with the Ultrafire chargers are shipping an adaptor that is potentially dangerous. It can not hold the weight of the cord and plug without becoming lose and exposing part of the pins. This means with the 240 volt standard any skin contact is potentially lethal. Also in Australia due to deaths adaptors and extension cords must have enough over lap in installation that by the time the pins are exposed the circuit is broken. This is a common-sense design that is now generally accepted as an excellent idea and adds virtually nothing to the cost of the adaptor / extension lead. As mentioned the 240 volt standard means a lot more danger than the USA 110 volt standard.

    The adaptor shipped is a remarkably poor piece of design and appears to be designed to handle European/UK and USA plugs. This means the grip on the very thin USA plugs is inadequate and by the the Grace of a Protector you go. Adaptors sold in Australia have a deep well that means even if a plug becomes lose you will not be exposed to the bare pins.

    Electrical safety is a big issue and it is disappointing that countries and suppliers are shipping items that are potentially lethal when much safer design exist at a minor or non existent extra cost.

    And this adaptor is not restricted to AW as it has cropped up a few times in ebay complaints with suppliers selling Maha chargers out of Hong Kong and most electrical items.

    Regards

  2. #2
    Silver Moderator
    SilverFox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    Hello Ent,

    Electrical safety is always important. It is wonderful that you were able to identify a potential issue and resolve it by rewiring the charger or purchasing an Australian made adapter.

    I suggest you contact AW and am sure he would be happy to refund the price you paid for the adapter he provided.

    It looks like CE stamped adapters designed for Australian use run around 9$.

    What did AW charge you for the adapter that came with the charger?

    Tom
    Behind every Great man there's always a woman rolling her eyes...

    Most batteries don't die - they are tortured to near death, then murdered...

  3. #3

    Default Re: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    Hi Silverfox

    To the best of my understanding of the price list it was included in the price so nothing lost on the dollar front as far as I can tell apart from me sourcing another one locally, no great hardship as I have a collection of USA/European/UK gadgets. I have asked AW by Pm to have a look at the adapter as it really not up to the job. Better if not shipped or replaced with a better and dare I say more expensive one. I am not sure if the thinner than normal pins of the UF chargers are not helping. I definitely would not want to use the adapter for heavy loads and noticed that it is rated at ten amps. At that power draw you could have a serious heat issue in addition to the shock hazard.

    The code on the one that has me worried is
    0802
    41-13619
    2.5/250V 10A
    For travel use

    It is a two pin black hard, almost Bakelite type material.

    Cheers

  4. #4
    Silver Moderator
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    Default Re: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    Hello Ent,

    Well if it was free, you should just recycle it and use one that you feel comfortable with. Or, better yet, change out the plug wire to one that works without an adapter. Many people modify their flashlights to obtain better performance, you could do the same with the charger.

    Tom
    Behind every Great man there's always a woman rolling her eyes...

    Most batteries don't die - they are tortured to near death, then murdered...

  5. #5

    Default Re: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    I just tape it on. Or use a different adaptor. Australian plugs have insulation on the prongs and are safer. Our voltage is actually 230v + or - a %. The risk of electrocution is minimized by circuit breakers in your home. I use those adaptors with aquarium equipment and have not had any problems. Some people bend the pins to fit an aus powerpoint so the adaptor is not needed. I've done it and it works.
    Last edited by BREAM; 07-01-2011 at 06:35 AM.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    Quote Originally Posted by SilverFox View Post
    Hello Ent,

    Well if it was free, you should just recycle it and use one that you feel comfortable with. Or, better yet, change out the plug wire to one that works without an adapter. Many people modify their flashlights to obtain better performance, you could do the same with the charger.

    Tom
    Yeap I brought from the local store a converter that has the deep recess and also surge protection for $9.95. But I am sure that more than a few people will be tempted to use the other one shipped though. Reading around the web they are becoming very popular adaptors to ship and more than a few people have struck similar issues. What worries me is they might kill a child and then customers will be instructed to ban imports with them. Australian standards now require/encourage that the first part of pins be insulated. It is actually a very sensible idea but noticed that Asian/US have not picked up on this though it does appear to have been adopted by the UK. Each country I suppose sees safety in their own way. My favourite was power points in showers when I travelled through Turkey. Yes they were live! Australia authorities can be very much the nanny state as demonstrated by our post office refusing to ship lithium and lithium ion batteries unless by road and then with a lot of form filling out. My feeling is, it will not be the reputable brands that will cause an issue, but brands of indifferent quality. I looked at replacing the fly lead but Ultrafire appear to use a slightly different one to what is standard here. I use to build my own HiFi gear amplifiers, electrostatic speakers, etc and found some designs rather suspect on electrical safety and notice on this web a few designs that are a little ambitious. Anyway I hope any people with similar adapters give them a good hard look and bin them for better/safer ones. Cheers

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* 1 what's Avatar
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    Default Re: Power point adapters USA to Australian ex AW / Ultrafire chargers really safe?

    I could not agree more or put it bettter than the conclusion of post#6.
    "Anyway I hope any people with similar adapters give them a good hard look and bin them for better/safer ones."
    A while back I purchased 10 US to Universal (Aus) plugs (10 for $10 posted via Ebay) and threw the lot in the bin when I tried the first one.
    The problem was as described in this post.
    Much better to buy an Aus plug and connect it to the lead in place of the "foreign" one.

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