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Brad Fitzpatrick

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Ghetto electronics [Jun. 11th, 2005|09:55 pm]
Brad Fitzpatrick
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When I was in Germany for a month in 2002 I'd planned ahead and brought a plug/voltage converter from Radio Shack. Little did I know that Radio Shack was behind the times and their European plug was useless, not being circular in-set. So while I was in Germany I hunted down an electronics parts store, I found a plug-adapter (not voltage-adapter) that went from Euro plug to American (or Euro!) plug. But on the American plug side it still had the round in-set, so I chiseled away at it with my fingernail clippers. Once I got 3/4 of it off, I was then able to plug in my Radio Shack wall-wart into the now-sticking-out-of-the-hole adapter.

Ghetto plug adapter

End result: whenever I go to Europe, I now bring my ghetto little piece of chiseled plastic so I can plugin my laptop (which happily accepts 220v) or my crappy Radio Shack power adapter for things like my cellphone.

aaah yea'.

[User Picture]From: iconoclast
2005-06-12 05:06 am (UTC)
Wow, you're like Macguyver. Except even he knows not to shop at Radio Shack.
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[User Picture]From: jeremyleff
2005-06-12 05:13 am (UTC)
Radio Shack was behind the times? Imagine that.
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[User Picture]From: hughe
2005-06-12 08:53 am (UTC)
hmm i wonder if anyone has ever traveled the world only staying with peole from livejournal...

totally unrelated.
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[User Picture]From: ciphergoth
2005-06-12 10:12 am (UTC)
I'm amazed. Every piece of portable equipment I have owned in the last five years has been equally happily to eat US or European voltage...
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[User Picture]From: brad
2005-06-12 10:56 am (UTC)
My laptops, cameras, yes. Not with electric razor, phone charger.
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[User Picture]From: agreg
2005-06-12 02:58 pm (UTC)
You could always just use power-over-ethernet for your shaver :)
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[User Picture]From: tytso
2005-06-12 11:20 am (UTC)
The way those voltage converters are supposed to work is that they're supposed to come with a set of plug adaters (euro/american on the famale side). One of them should have been a Euro(male)/Euro-US-combo(female) much like what you hacked together, except that it's smaller and oval-shaped, so it will fit into outlets such as the weird, diamod-shaped, swiss outlets. Did the one from Radio Shack realy not include them?!? Bastards.

What I do myself, is I'll go to Fry's and get 2 or 3 of the grounded Euro(male) to Universal(female) adapters. Since they are are designed to fit into the circular in-set outlets, they are mechanically much stable (and they will accept an 3-prong US plug without requiring a cheaters). Of course, I'll also carry a set of the cheasier, small, 2-prong outlet for emergencies or for when I'm visiting a country with wierd outlets, such as Switzerland....
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[User Picture]From: mart
2005-06-12 11:21 am (UTC)

That'll do you fine until you come to the UK and have to deal with one of these bad boys:

[UK mains socket]
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[User Picture]From: calliste
2005-06-12 01:30 pm (UTC)
I remember that!
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[User Picture]From: bevived
2005-06-12 02:21 pm (UTC)
You know they have these really small ones that you don't have to chisel anything away from, and they're sold at Media Markt (at least in Heidelberg) for 3 euros. They have both versions, the German-US one and US-German one.
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From: jmason
2005-06-13 02:48 am (UTC)


funny -- I have one almost EXACTLY like that ;)
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[User Picture]From: scosol
2005-06-13 05:25 am (UTC)
HAHAHAHAHAH I had to do the same thing in Paris a month ago- except I just sat on the sidewalk drinking, and scrubbed it in a circle on the ground, sanding the "obstruction edge" off-
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From: xiambax
2005-06-13 08:50 am (UTC)
haha its radioshack...
make sure when you go to france you save that peice of plastic to throw at someone french.
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From: crypticreign
2005-06-13 07:58 pm (UTC)
I did the same exact thing when I was in Ukraine.

Funny tho, I did not purchase it at Radio Shack, rather i bought it for $.50 cents American from some street vendor.
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[User Picture]From: mcfnord
2005-06-13 10:05 pm (UTC)
it looks like a piece of dollhouse furniture.
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