We have inherited an old top-open freezer from a relative. I realized the plug on the end of the cord (5-15 male plug) was banged up and I didn't feel comfortable using it as-is, so I snipped it off thinking I could just rewire a new plug onto it. Of course I was mistaken and as it turns out this is some sort of appliance cord. Here is an idea of the cross section (H=bare copper; G=green insulated ground):
The insulation on one of the sides is scored down the length with small shallow grooves and I am all but certain this intended to identify that conductor as either a hot or neutral.
Judging by the cord, I need a special plug that would bite through the insulation to hit the various conductors. I could be wrong but this is my guess.
I thought about replacing the cord altogether but the "block" where the black, green and white wires hit and this 3-conductor cord continues out to the plug is molded similar to the plug itself. And while I know I *could* just cut the wires loose from this block, wire nut onto a new cord and move down the road I don't want to really do that unless it's a last resort, and even then I will be overly cautious with how I do it (wire nuts, electrical tape, strain relief, etc.).
Ideally I'd like to just put a new 3-conductor plug on the cable.
A plug that slides onto the cut unstripped cord end and bites into the cord will probably not carry enough current to run the freezer.
Does the cord also have deep grooves lengthwise along the sides so you can split the three conductors with some insulation all the way each of the hot wires? Use a sharp knife and carefully cut the wires apart following the grooves. Simply tearing can result in the insulation not splitting cleanly and possibly exposing bare wire.
Or can you take a sharp knife and manually slit the end of the cord lengthwise down the middle of both sides a few inches following the green so you can peel away the two hot wires, still covered, away from the ground wire (Don't dig deep so as to cut into the green.)
Get a heavy duty plug with screw on connections to its prongs.
The lightly scored edge of the cord should be the neutral.
Tornado victims: Do not rush to rebuild. Take your time and look for and get a good contractor. Or consider selling the property and moving to a home that is ready to live in.