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How to Make a "Homebrew" Refrigerator Compressor Test Cord

I've used this simple and inexpensive test cord setup for many years (that's why it looks so ratty!), and it's been extremely handy. Built mainly for 'hot-wiring' refrigerator compressors, I've found a lot of other uses for this, and though you might find one useful, too.

Built into a standard steel electrical utility box (most any box will do, though), here's what mine looks like (I know, it needs a cosmetic 'makeover'!):

 

I use rubber 16 gauge 'SJ' cord with alligator clips soldered onto the 'business end'. A scrapped 15A appliance cord works well for the input side. The cord from an old microwave oven works fine, and they're easy to find these days. ;-)

The hardest part of building one will probably be finding the correct 15A toggle switches, but Grainger's or most any other good electrical supply house will handle them. One's simply a SPST 'on/off' switch, the other also SPST, but the momentary contact version. Makes it easy to apply voltage to a start winding just briefly, until a compressor starts, when it's released.

The schematic for the cord looks something like this:

Compressor test cord schematic

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