Museum of Plugs and Sockets logo, small AS/NZS 3112 standard
historic plugs and sockets
navigation icon navigation icon navigation icon


Spersom type I 10A socket
Energo type I 10A socket
Vintage type I 10A socket
Granite (Australia) 10A  2-way multi-plug

Classic New Zealand 10A plugs
Obsolete droplet shaped PDL socket Classic New Zealand 10A socket 1950s HPM single outlet

1 Porcelain 250V, 10A socket. Brand name: Spersom, a British manufacturer of, among others, electrical accessories, now part of Sperryn Gas Controls (Birmingham, UK).   {GR}
2 Bakelite 250V, 10A socket, made in Australia by Energo. Possibly 1930-40s.   {CrR}
3 Vintage plate and switch. The round socket has been added more recently.   {GR}
Bakelite two-way (top, bottom) multi-plug. Indicated is: (i) Combined maximum loading 10 Amps 250 Volts; (ii) Made to standards association of Australia specifications; (iii) Garnite (name of manufacturer). Pin lengths: 20.5 mm (L, N) and 22.5 mm (earth).
5 Obsolete plug models with top cable entry. This is potentionally unsafe because it possible to uncouple plug and socket by firmly pulling the cable, rather than the plug. The right hand model has a droplet shape. The 'top' of the droplet indicates the position of the earth pin. Brand names: G&R, Christchurch, New Zealand (top, round model) and PDL (bottom, droplet model).   {GR}
6 Obsolete droplet-shaped socket made by PDL Ltd. The maching plug is shown in image no. 5.
The socket is not a museum item, but a photo sent by John Hunter, an Australian museum visitor.
7, 8 1950s examples of standard 10A sockets. Brand names: PDL Ltd, New Zealand (no. 7), HPM Australia (no. 8).
The wall plate is attached to the body of the socket by two fixing screws. For safety reasons a direct contact with metal parts of the socket has to be impossible, therefore older models have fixing screws with insulated heads. More modern methods to hide fixing screws are shown elsewhere.
   (7):{GR} and  (8):{PT}
The writing of ONLY on HPM socket no. 8 is remarkable.

Classic PDL Bakelite 10A plug HPM Bakelite 10A plug
Marcolite Bakelite 10A plug
Bakelite Australasian type piggyback plug

For plug nos. 9 -12 applies that the earth pin is 3 mm longer than L and N pins. Each pin has a lobed tip.

9 Classic, Bakelite 10A plug. The shape of plugs in combination with a Bakelite housing suggests that the plug dates back to the 1930s. Brand name: PDL Ltd, New Zealand.   {ChR}  
10 Bakelite plug rated at 10A - 250V. Manufacturer: HPM, Australia.   {WN}
11 Bakelite plug rated at 10A - 250V. Manufacturer: Marcolite, Australia.   {WN}
12 Bakelite 'piggyback' type plug. Indicated rating: 240V S.C. 5A. Manufacturer unknown. Patent 942932.   {WN}

Up to the 1950s a mix of old British and various plugs and sockets of US origin were used in Australia and New Zealand (see examples below). They were gradually phased out when the Australian C112 standard (redefined as AS/NZS 3112 standard) was officially recognized.
Some examples of US plugs and sockets that were formerly used in New Zealand are shown on the "pre-NEMA" plugs and sockets page.

Anchor 3A multi-plug
HPM 10A BS372-part I plug
HPM BS 372 Part I 10A plug and matching socket

13 3-way multi-plug for BS 372 Part I plugs (5A) and NEMA 1-15 flat blade plugs. Rating: 3A - 250V. Both British and U.S. plug types have been used in Australia and New Zealand. Manufacturer: Anchor Electrical, formerly a family-owned Indian electrical equipment brand, now a part of the Japanese Panasonic Corporation.   {WN}
14, 15
BS 372 Part I plug. Although the type of plug is rated at 5A in Britain, the shown model, made in Australia, is rated at 10A.
The unusual shape was marketed as 'adjustable'. Anyhow it can be used when an outlet offers limited space; see image no. 11. Manufacturer: HPM (Australia).   {WN}


navigation icon
D i g i t a l   M u s e u m   o f
navigation icon
P l u g s   a n d   S o c k e t s
navigation icon