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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
just now I don't have more time for an introduction. I just wrote 30 minutes on a post which does not get through here, meaning _after_ I wrote it I found out I can not post, though I am logged in.


So I put it here, may someone who can move it to 1583 please.
To start (hi, I am new in forum) Grounding is a poor expression for the electrical current wiring. I refers to power grids which use the earth as a conductor, no elaborate details here why.

Important is that Ground is an extra conductor which is used to
1) blow a fuse when the hot wire (120 / 240 volts) touches some "grounded" electrical equip--ment's metal case.
2) keep the metal case of any such equipment to the same voltage as the earth is, = 0. Zero volts are harmless.

If grounding fails equipment case may become 120 volts, touching it with 1 hand while feet are on conducting ground or second hand touching a properly grounded equip--ment may kill.

A generator is not part of the power grid. Connecting it to a ground rod means nothing in "circuit-speak" unless the inlet power cable's ground pin is connected to the grid connector, or / and the rod too. It may work, I would not rely on this approach.

More efficient is to ascertain the ground pin of the properly wired vehicle's power inlet cable is connected to the metallic part (paint removed) of the gene--rator. ( In a "normal" setup this is simply the 3-prong plug, with its "ground" pin, plugged into the gene--rator's outlet.)

This would ascertain that faulty equipment again would blow the fuse because the fault voltage, current actually, returns thought the "ground" wire to the ge--nerator. Compare with the 2-hands example above, it is the easiest to follow in understanding this case.

Running a cable through the window from your portable generat--or outside: Use a 3-wire cable with the ground pin connected, not cut off, if the equipment you use has a 3 pin connector. Else use 2 or 3 prong cable. An additional measure is to put the genera--tor on dry wood high enough rain on ground / dirt does not connect with the gen--erator's metallic parts. It should not be necessary, but an unimaginable situation could occur when this may help protection.
Wood won't help if rainwater gets inside the running generat--or, where the rotor is.

Though the question has not been asked: Never connect the ge--nerator to your vehicle's 120 (or whatever, 230V) while the grid power is connected to it. (Unless you want to burn the genera--tor's coils. Warranty ineffective!).

Remember, even if I am wrong in what I wrote above, you are responsible for believing my advice. If you can't make sense of my explanations ask someone you can eventually blame. Not me.

I hope I have disabled all automatic links --.
bye for now

971 Posts
welcome.... bottom line. If you use a Generator then create a proper power cable from the generator to the the rig that grounds the neutral and the ground. Did I say that right?

You better know which is which and there are additional considerations if you are using a 50 amp adapter, too. My rig has a 50amp plug, therefore I must consider this.

31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
third attempt to post

The GROUND (metal frame / chassis / rotor case) of the generator (power outlet) and the GROUND pin of the rig's power cable must be conducting together. A ground rod would not improve it.

There are 3 conductors:
__1) HOT 120 volts, may kill when touched.
__2) RETURN for 120 volts. In a faultless wiring system this conductor will not electrocute if touched - then it is "neutral". If it is broken the load side may become HOT. Then it is no longer neutral. It may kill. ***
These 1) 2) are the cable's 2 flat pins / holes. If the NEUTRAL** is functionally synonymous with RETURN, do not ground it / do not connect it with the ground pin.

A 3-wire cable is required. ___________ {This answers your question. <<grounds the neutral __and__ the ground>>. The way you write it the 2 wires are connected. Don't.}______________

(**Sorry, terminology can sometimes be misleading. NEUTRAL is one of these words when lay people use it without knowing what is really behind.)

__3) the GROUND pin / hole. It is usually round in U.S. & CA. Its wire must be equal or bigger than 1), 2). It is the core subject discussed here. It connects the touchable parts of metallic / conducting case or frame of the gene--rator and rig.
*** If the wire broken at the load end touches the properly grounded frame (touchable metal) the 120 volts caused by a different fault vanish through the GROUND wire. In this rare case the circuit fuse protecting the HOT will not blow. The wiring system turns from a protective 3-wire system into a 2-wire system with reduced safety.
A wiring fault indicator (plug-in device) will show the trouble. I have one plugged in all the time in my rig.
_____ If still unsure, keep asking. ______

A ground rod may change matters for thunderstorm lightning, outdoor antennas etc. That is a very different story and ways to do this wrong are even more.

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