FAQs

Why a locking electrical 120V?

A1. Why Not?

A2. Experienced tradesmen, professionals and the industries have experienced disconnect frustrations and the down time, break of pacing, rhythm and time inefficiencies, loss of power when needed and even broken tools. In any environment, this unacceptable. The common alternatives to solving the problem, such as tying cords into knots, duct tape or using twist lock devices is not only bad business but a dangerous situation as well.

A3. Air, hydraulic, and water couplings have used quick connect couplings for 100 years. They have and continue to work perfectly. The world has become so accustomed to locking and sliding collar release action, that it has become a world-wide standard, common and universally known. It is only natural that an electrical device be adapted in a manner and style that is similar and perfected for performance and handling.

Will ALL plugs work with the Qwik-Lok?

A. Yes . . . well almost!

The Qwik-Lok operates by making use of the two 1/8" holes found on the plug blades set in a standardized location. Two strong, hard brass “catch-hooks” automatically insert themselves into the plug blade holes. On exceptional and rare situations, these holes are not in the correct position, and if they are too far away from the face, the catch- hook cannot drop in. The plug then is not locked. For all intents and purposes, no one has had a problem with these ever.

Here you see the Beryllium copper and the hard brass catch hook - the heart of the system. That hook drops into the plug prong hole. The discolored copper piece is the result after 3 years of use in perfect operating condition. Most heavily used connectors do not make it past 1 or 2 years of use - let alone lock into place.

Do you make a 20A version?

A. The demand for a 20A version is too low to be profitable and marketable at this time. However that could change . . . !

Do all common plugs have holes?

A . Yes - except the odd one.

Only a very few devices do not have the hole. The ones that we are aware of are some Cube-Taps and 3Way bar taps which since they do not lock are basically defeating the locking purpose in the first place. Some Crouse-Hinds and Arrowhart replacement connectors do not have the holes.

Are the plug prong holes necessary?

A. Yes - for the locking mechanism to work.

Will the Qwik-Lok still function if the plug holes are absent?

A. Yes, with no loss of conductivity or performance, but it will not lock. However, it will hold by the good friction fit as good as or better than any leading brand.

Will bent or twisted plug prongs work?

A 1. Yes. (Within reason of course!)

A 2. The Qwik-Lok inner mechanism literally forces the blades or it’s own inner components into proper alignment. As long as the plug blades are reasonably intact, are not broken and have the hole, the locking mechanism will, in almost every case, work, generally even in terrible conditions!

Straighten this out a bit so that the plug can be inserted into the Qwik-Lok and it will lock perfectly.

What happens if the plug blade is corroded or damaged?

A. Good Question! The Qwik-Lok was specifically designed to deal with this issue. Providing that the basic plug blade is there with the hole you WILL have power.

First off there are 5 contact points between the Qwik-Lok and EACH plug prong, 2 on top and 2 on each side of the blade and the hook itself.

The 2 side contacts are stiff and have a scraping / cleaning action when a plug is inserted. When a corroded plug is used, the contacts scrape off the corrosion, thus forming a perfect connection. You may have to cycle it 4-5 times to clean off the corrosion.

Secondly, the Qwik-Lok also uses a superior copper alloy, beryllium copper in which it carry a lot of current, typically 5 times the amount of the best devices out there. The chances of electrical burnouts, arcing and heat build up from a bad contact is zero. We can confidently give you a guarantee of power.

Why are there holes in a plug blade in the first place?

I knew you would be asking this!

A. 1: To be truthful, we really don’t know why or where they originated from! (Does it matter?)

A. 2: Maybe some clever genius industrial designer knew 100 years ago that Qwik-Lok was going to need them and made provision for them a century later!

A. 3: Many plug and cord set manufacturers use the holes as locating pins for the prongs when they are making molded-in-place plugs on their cord sets.

A. 4: Type A and B plugs have two flat prongs with a hole near the tip. These holes aren't there without a reason. If you were to take apart a type A or B socket and look at the contact wipers that the prongs slide into, you would find that in some cases they have bumps on them. These bumps fit into the holes so that the outlet can grip the plug's prongs more firmly. This prevents the plug from slipping out of the socket due to the weight of the plug and cord. It also improves the contact between the plug and the outlet. Some sockets (many today), however, don't have those bumps but just two spring-action blades that grip the sides of the plug pin, in which case the holes aren't necessary..

A. 4: To be used a century later.

How strong is the locking mechanism?

A 1. Very Strong. It has unheard of holding power - similar to an airline quick-connect. In other words, it can’t come apart unless abused. The Qwik-Lok mechanism inserts a strong hard brass “catch-hook” into the hole of each plug prong, similar to a fish-hook barb.

A 2: We have tension pulled the Qwik-Lok to failure at more than 400 pounds. This never happens in the real world. Even so, the weak link is not in the Qwik-Lok but rather a) the terminals of the implement plugs, b) the wires that tear, or c) the cord set rips out of the implement. This is a good safety measure because under any failure, there will be no live wires from a tear apart on the live Qwik-Lok end.

How tough are the plastic parts?

A 1. Real tough.

A 2. The Qwik-Lok uses the best, toughest plastic polycarbonate available -the same tough plastic that some motorcycle helmets are made out of. It has superb impact and electrical resistance, even at -20 to -40F. Some snowblowers and snow shovels are made from this plastic, as well as aircraft windows, motorcycle windshields, bumpers and car headlight lenses designed to withstands flying rocks and impacts.

A 3. We have seen 3 loaded dump trucks run over it for days in an excavation site in winter, destroying the Hubbell plug and yet the Qwik-Lok remained intact, except for a crack in the yellow collar.

A 4: It has been dropped from 50' on hard ground in a cold winter without problems. It has been hammered, abused, beat up, used in metal fab shop floors, heavy industry, assembly plants and given just about every torture test one can think of. It is not indestructible, but it will outlive anything else by a wide margin.

Notice how this tire is deflecting under the load. It did not even crack the plastics.

How well can the Qwik-Lok handle power surges (brown outs)?

A. For voltage spikes and sudden current draws: probably the best ... bar none. Remember though, that in most cases, a circuit breaker trips to prevent electrical damage under severe loads.

But unofficially, (without formal testing) we have “abused” it to find out its weakness.

For example, we have used is it in several 250V. 25-35A . situations for over a year without fail. It has been used on a 5hp 2 stage Quincy shop compressor, an AC welder supply mains, a 250V. portable construction compressor under all kinds of adverse weather conditions, a fire department, powerful lighting systems, aviation, TV, movie and theater lighting etc.

Are they good in severe operating conditions?

A. They are exceptional!

A 1. Sand, ice, snow, water, grease, many chemicals, ocean marine weather, have no or minimal effect upon the operation of the Qwik-Lok.

A 2. The inner components are quite corrosion resistant. Therefore, they can operate around chemical areas, sea and marine environments, harsh weather, arctic and desert environments.

A 3. They have been used in metal fab shops, assembly plants, construction sites, wet concrete situations, fire departments, Hollywood and Disneyland sets, rock and concert stages.

A 4. The plastic polycarbonate is still much tougher than the current products made of nylons or other materials. Qwik-Lok will outlast other leading products by a considerable factor. However, when the weather gets to be very cold into the 0°F. range, one still has to exercise common sense care. All materials become brittle at these temperatures. Exercise a bit more care.

A 5. The design is such that one can handle the Qwik-Lok using bulky gloves, in the worst of weather conditions with ease. It will easily lock and unlock, insert and remove plugs without any problem at all.

Qwik-Lok works in the worst of weather conditions with ease.

You mentioned the contacts inside being made of Beryllium Copper. What’s that?

A 1. Copper (Cu) is the most efficient electrical conductor today. That is why it is used in virtually everything electrical. However, copper is soft - it lacks strength and stiffness. To alter the properties, metallurgists have added certain elements, the main one being beryllium (.25%) to it to give it strength, hardness, stiffness, spring, corrosion resistence etc. without the terrible electrical resistance that other connectors have when using phosphor - bronze, stainless steel or nickel, typically only 10-11% that of pure copper

BeCu enjoys a 55% electrical conduction rate compared to copper - 5X greater than other conductors employed by the other devices. Furthermore, it does not corrode, burn out, oxidize, lose it’s spring tension, or even wear out. Most computer circuit board connecting pins and all automobile connectors use BeCu today.

Guaranteed Continuity? What is that?

A 1. It is the ability to transmit electricity through the connection (between the Qwik-Lok and any plug). Lack of resistance, a big open freeway! Basically a Qwik-Lok is so good at the connection point, that the electrical loss is virtually zero. It acts as if there is a solid wire through the connection.

A 2. Other connectors almost always suffer line loss due to inferior metals, thin, corroded, burned out conductors, poor wiring terminal connections and bad contact patches. It all spells line loss, bad continuity. A saw drawing on every last drop of 15 amps cutting thick wood needs every last drop of power. A bad connection which is quite common may leave a saw with only 10-11 amps thus overheating the motor and eventually causing premature failure, commutator failure, brush burn out, etc.

A 3. The Qwik-Lok WILL guarantee 100% power transmission in every circumstance. We have used the Qwik-Lok in aviation, oil and gas, TV, movie, Hospital industry and military where there is a zero error tolerance.

Is it waterproof?

A. No. But not so fast with the NO!

There are areas, like any connector anywhere, where water can get in. However, it can and has been used in wet, rainy, snowy, stormy weather without problem. The insulating properties of this plastic are excellent, but water conducts electricity and you may get a zot!

The beauty of the Qwik-Lok is that instead of trying to keep the water out which requires both a male and female matching waterproof end, the unit is designed to work with the elements, not hide from them. That is, it will not corrode under sea / salt settings, Seattle weather conditions, arctic and spring run off situations, wet concrete and outside work. Qwik-Lok doesn't fight the weather, just use better materials so the weather will not affect it’s performance. Makes sense?

Use common sense like any product. Limit the use in sopping wet weather and stay out of marine environments. It is NOT designed and can NOT be used in marine environments where it will be submersed under water. It will not work.

Why a Hospital Grade version?

A 1. Yes in Canada.

A 2. TV, Movie, Theater and Lighting industries (and other high performance industries) have a high standard of certification for safety and margin for error and have thus adopted the Hospital grade standard as the best in the CSA industry. We are certified to that standard in Canada.

The green dot and label identify it as a certified Hospital Grade version.

We have often seen different colors of Qwik-Lok’s, in their bodies and face caps. Is there a difference in performance?

A. None. They are identical except in color. We offered a choice based strictly on customer preference and to be able to identify one cord, say a 25' from a 50' or from one location or owner from another when a number of cords were used on a common job site. Our units are very well received by the TV, film and lighting industry for this purpose. Some are used in Disneyland (Japan) and Hollywood today.

At one time, we offered these colors - they are all identical and were used for ID and cosmetic reasons only.

Do you have extension cord sets?

A. Yes - through our client at TIFCO. See www.tifco.com

How do I wire it up?

A. See wiring instructions.
The wires can be wrapped around the screw either clockwise or counter-clockwise. But the wire must enter at the precise location as specified in the wiring instructions.

My plug won’t lock into the Qwik-Lok. Why?

A 1. First see question 2 and understand the concepts.

A 2. The distance between the hole and plug face is important. If it is incorrect or the face of the plug does not come flush with the face of the Qwik-Lok the distance is too much and therefore the internal locking mechanism catch-hook will not engage the plug holes. There could be number of reasons for this.
1a. The plug face may be deformed outwards from heat or damage, thus shortening the distance between the face and the hole. This must be remedied. By this point, the plug may be damaged beyond reasonable repair. A replacement may be needed.

2a. The holes are missing on the plug prongs, or the prong ends are broken off leaving a half hole. You need the holes on the plug for the locking mechanism to work.

3a. The odd plug has the holes in the wrong spot - too close to the face.

4a. One or all of the three screws on the face of the Qwik-Lok are not fully inserted and need to be tightened. This protrusion causes a distance separation between the plug and Qwik-Lok faces. Tighten the screws so that the face of the 3 screws are flush to or lower than the red face cap.

5a. There may be dirt, concrete or other foreign material between the faces which has to be removed.

6a. The locking mechanism is jammed or ruined inside (unlikely). However, the Qwik-Lok can be taken apart and possibly repaired. If that does not work, our recommendation is to purchase a new unit.

Are there weak links in the system?

Good question. Yes and No. There are weak links, but not with the Qwik-Lok.

1. Under stupid amount of tension or strain, the wires may rip out of the plug - but never out of the Qwik-Lok. The plug (a non Qwik-Lok item) may fail with the plugs internal wire terminal connections. If they have been crimped in place, the wires will pull out under excess strain. Normal molded-in-place plugs can usually withstand tension pulls from 40 to 75 lbs. for a crimped terminal plug. Soldered plug terminal connections are much stronger.

However, there comes a point where common sense has to prevail - this is not to be used as a rope, or for lifting heavy tools.

2. Replacement plugs have screw terminals that are tightened by the owner. Simply by design, not all of these hold that well. Make sure terminal screws are screwed in as tightly as possible. If mechanical and electrical performance is absolutely mandatory, do what the hospitals and aviators do: solder the wires in place for both the plug and the Qwik-Lok. The Qwik-Lok has a built in lead for just such a purpose.

end faq

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