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  1. #1
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    Default Service Equipment Bonding

    This is the interior of an interior service equipment panel. I could not see where the neutral and ground were bonded together. There is a strap that connects the two terminal blocks, but all I saw was plastic and did not appear to be thick enough to be plastic over a metal bonding strap.

    I just wanted to make sure. Has the bonding strap been removed or am I missing something?

    Thanks

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Looks like that it a metal strap between the two terminal bars and which is isolated from ground to allow that panel to be used either as service equipment or as non-service equipment.

    You did, I am sure, write up all those grounds in that large terminal.

    Also, I can't tell from those photos, but there is a bonding strap or bonding screw which bonds one of the bars to the enclosure, right?

    Also, that neutral conductor at its terminal has one heck of a super tight bending radius. Should be at least a radius of 4 times the diameter of the conductor (including the insulation). Which means a 1/2" diameter conductor needs an inside radius of 2" for the 4" inside diameter bend.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    Looks like that it a metal strap between the two terminal bars and which is isolated from ground to allow that panel to be used either as service equipment or as non-service equipment.

    Also, I can't tell from those photos, but there is a bonding strap or bonding screw which bonds one of the bars to the enclosure, right?
    Jerry,

    I too, assumed the multiple service equipment/non service equipment configuration, but I think neutral/ground (grounded/grounding) is improperly isolated.

    I cannot see the metal strap/buss between the two terminal bars. All I see is plastic. Is there a metal bar under the plastic? It seems to me that there is not enough room for a metal bar. The plastic was only 1/8" or so thick and I would expect a metal strap to be at least that thick, without adding the plastic insulator. I was wondering if the bar/buss had been removed or not installed. Generally, the metal bar is visible, but isolated from the panelbox.

    I could not find a bonding screw anywhere on either terminal block.

    I think you have answered my question.

    No, I did not notice the bending radius, but I did see the multiple grounds.

    Thanks

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    The bending radius would be a non issue. They are not in cables, nor are they 600 volts or more.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    The bending radius would be a non issue. They are not in cables, nor are they 600 volts or more.
    Ooooh! Sounds like fightin' words... Jerry?

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    I agree with the bend radius too... But, that being said I would have real concern about your grounding / bonding issue...
    I blew up your pics and looked at the unused or ill used...) bonding lug on the ground bus bar...


    And, I would have addtional concerns over those (what look like) number tens that are spliced into those number eight conductors... at the top of the box...


    I can hear that conversation now... "Hey boss... I don't understand it... I cut that wire twice and it's still too short... Oh, well, can't see it from my house..."

    There just seems to be a lot of splices on that box...


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Gunnar Alquist View Post
    Ooooh! Sounds like fightin' words... Jerry?
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Phoenix View Post
    I agree with the bend radius too...
    WHY??? Jim is absolutely correct.

    Have any of you ever seen a factory wired meter/main? In some of them the 2/0cu conductors they install a between the meter section and the panel section are bent so sharp it's crazy. Yet it is legal and safe.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    The bending radius would be a non issue. They are not in cables, nor are they 600 volts or more.
    Bending radius IS an issue.

    The NEC covers installations of 600 volts or more as requiring *8* times the diameter as the bending radius (for the typical non-shielded conductors).

    The NEC also covers ALL installation (including less than 600 volts) under 110.3(B) ... (you've probably heard of that code section? ) ... and when I called Southwire (the manufacturer of Romex - remember them?) and several other major manufacturers of electrical conductors I got the same answer: their design bending radius is a minimum 4 times the diameter of the conductor (and its insulation) as their industry standard and as part of their testing, listing, and labeling, making the bending radius for 600 volts and less as *4* times overall diameter of the conductor.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
    WHY??? Jim is absolutely correct.
    Peter,

    Actually, Jim is absolutely INcorrect, but you were close, you only missed the "IN' part. See my post above.

    Have any of you ever seen a factory wired meter/main? In some of them the 2/0cu conductors they install a between the meter section and the panel section are bent so sharp it's crazy. Yet it is legal and safe.
    Yep, that is legal and "safe". Know why that is allowed but it is not allowed elsewhere?

    Here are the key words: "factory wired".

    Those are part of the listing and labeling of the equipment.

    Do it on the job and it no longer is part of the listing and labeling of the equipment, they now required bends with a radius of 4 times the overall diameter of the conductor.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    ... and when I called Southwire (the manufacturer of Romex - remember them?) and several other major manufacturers of electrical conductors I got the same answer: their design bending radius is a minimum 4 times the diameter of the conductor (and its insulation) as their industry standard and as part of their testing, listing, and labeling, making the bending radius for 600 volts and less as *4* times overall diameter of the conductor.
    So where do we find this in writing?


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Fight... Fight...(I love this site!)

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    No fight (yet). I am truly curious as to where we find this in writing. Just because someone says so on the phone does not make it code.

    If the manufacturer requires a certain specification, they MUST provide it in writing. Then, and only then will 110.3(B) apply.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
    So where do we find this in writing?
    Here.

    This is what they faxed to me 'way back when' in 2001.

    Note that the minimum wire bending radius varies depending on the sizes of the conductors, which is shown in Table H-1, which I also included in a larger version.

    The typical conductor for residential uses will be in the first column - 1.000 inches and less and the first row of insulation thickness, they intersect at "4" under "Minimum Bending Radius as a Multiple of Cable Diameter".

    My notes on the page are boxed in.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
    No fight (yet).
    Oh, you're no fun. I like to see pages and pages of people calling each other names.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Gunnar Alquist View Post
    Oh, you're no fun. I like to see pages and pages of people calling each other names.
    Hey now. I'm trying to get past those days.



    Thanks for the post Jerry. I'll check it out.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    So, I'm still trying to figure out how a bending requirement chart for a cable (more than 1 conductor in a common jacket) or an over 600 volt requirement applies to a single wire (no longer in a cable) and under 600 volts.

    Or, did I miss something?


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Kriegh View Post
    So, I'm still trying to figure out how a bending requirement chart for a cable (more than 1 conductor in a common jacket) or an over 600 volt requirement applies to a single wire (no longer in a cable) and under 600 volts.

    Or, did I miss something?
    Gee Bill,

    I said the same thing in post #4. We are dealing with conductors, not cables.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Gee Bill,

    I said the same thing in post #4. We are dealing with conductors, not cables.
    Jim & Bill,

    Does the NEC have a definition of "cable"? I seem to remember that a cable can be multiple insulated conductors or single conductor that is comprised of multiple strands. If the NEC does not differentiate, then both would likely be cable.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Kriegh View Post
    So, I'm still trying to figure out how a bending requirement chart for a cable (more than 1 conductor in a common jacket) or an over 600 volt requirement applies to a single wire (no longer in a cable) and under 600 volts.

    Or, did I miss something?
    I have to agree. That chart does not apply to individual conductors.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Kriegh View Post
    So, I'm still trying to figure out how a bending requirement chart for a cable (more than 1 conductor in a common jacket) or an over 600 volt requirement applies to a single wire (no longer in a cable) and under 600 volts.

    Or, did I miss something?
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Gee Bill,

    I said the same thing in post #4. We are dealing with conductors, not cables.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gunnar Alquist View Post
    Jim & Bill,

    Does the NEC have a definition of "cable"? I seem to remember that a cable can be multiple insulated conductors or single conductor that is comprised of multiple strands. If the NEC does not differentiate, then both would likely be cable.

    Jim and Bill,

    You guys need to stop spending so much effort to try to 'get people' and more effort in actually reading and comprehending what is posted in response to your 'let's git 'em' attitudes ... and listen to Gunnar.

    Such as, with regard to BOTH reading and listening to Gunnar, this from THAT SAME PAGE ... WHICH YOU APPARENTLY FAILED TO READ ...

    From:
    - H2.1 "for both single- and multiple-conductor cable"
    - H3.1.3.1 "for a single conductor cable"


    You guys also need to read what Table H-1 talks about.

    It talks about the "insulation" thickness, NOT the "cable outer sheath" thickness.

    One of these days you might try spending your time trying to be helpful, that be good for all.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post

    One of these days you might try spending your time trying to be helpful, that be good for all.
    Jerry, don't take this the wrong way, but these kind of comments are what causes animosity in these threads.
    I see no one trying to "get you" or being rude/nasty. This conversation is pretty civil if you ask me. I think making an effort to keep it that way will go a long way on this forum.
    Conversations like this, which show several opinions and interpretations, and have a professional dialogue, are helpful to all IMO.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
    I see no one trying to "get you"

    Peter,

    That is because you have not been here long enough.

    A number of months back Jim spend, truly, not making this up, 90% or more of his posts trying to do as stated, along with a few others, including Bill.

    I have previously, and still do, acknowledged that Bill is quite knowledgeable. Jim, on the other hand, seems to have little knowledge of his own and usually just jumps in and echos what Ken would try to pass off as knowledge (Ken was doing the same, however, unlike Jim but like Bill, I can tell that Ken is knowledgeable in electrical).

    Jim, I really suspect that Jim has limited knowledge in the subject, based on his past posts and what little, very little, he as actually contributed to the information here.

    Bill and Ken, I am sure they are knowledgeable in electrical, no doubt in my mind.

    If you had been around the past year or so you would know the history, and history as a way of repeating itself when one does not learn from history, and Jim keeps repeating history.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Understood.
    In the scope of things I am still a "noob".


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Stick around Pete and you will see how someone will belittle anyone that dares to diaagree with his almighty opinion. Thankfully not all on this board are that pompous.

    You will also see how questions that can't be answered with cut and paste are ignored or distorted by adding extraneous issues to the original question. Kind of like where you asked what the gutter space in the panel was for if it wasn't for wiring.

    Washington spin doctors have nothing on some people.


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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Jim,

    I acknowledged that Bill and Ken are knowledgeable in electrical ... what, you don't think so?

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Southwire, the source of the charts, refers to the wire inside their SER and other cables as conductors, not cables. Personally I think it's a stretch to call the neutral in question a cable and I'd be real surprised if the intent of the code was to prevent this particular hookup. I really think Jerry reads too much into things sometimes. Now, if this is starting another round of what Jerry is refering to, that wasn't the intent.

    As to the other references, Bill is a pretty reasonable guy most of the time. However, the "stuff" Jerry is referring to will show it's ugly head each and every time my competency is called into question because I disagree with someone who hasn't ever been an electrician or hasn't been in the field the 38 or so years I have. And, no, I don't know it all, yet. I just think I've been at this long enough I know what the code is looking for in an installation - but I admit to learning new things every day so I'm willing to listen to other points of view. Jerry and I are never going to agree on some things and agree completely on others. And, as long as we don't get into the situations where I'm getting called stupid or unprofessional because I say Jerry is wrong (or anybody else for that matter) then the post remains civil. And, when I want to take someone to task for these things there really shouldn't be any question what I'm doing and who I'm doing it to.

    In the above post, I was asking how a cable bending chart relates to an individual piece of wire - a conductor in Southwire's parlance. Nothing more or less. I can elevate the tone of the discourse if that's what folks are looking for.


  27. #27
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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Kriegh View Post
    Personally I think it's a stretch to call the neutral in question a cable and I'd be real surprised if the intent of the code was to prevent this particular hookup. I really think Jerry reads too much into things sometimes.
    Bill,

    Not what *I* am reading into it, what *THEY* explained to be as their examples, applying that chart to single conductors, single conductor cables (which is simply a single conductor with an outer sheath), and multiple-conductor cables.

    After all, what is inside single- and multiple-conductor cables other than "single conductors" inside an outer sheath.

    It is the insulation they are concerned with, and that insulation is the reason for the minimum radius bends, which is shown with larger diameters for larger conductors and for thicker insulation on the same size conductors.

    You disagree with what the information is saying and thus try to write it off as "Jerry's opinion" when it is not "Jerry's opinion" it is the manufacturer's opinion.

    I understand you want to believe what YOU WANT TO. So be it. *I*, on the other hand, will believe what the MANUFACTURERS TELL ME is their standards and rules.

    I nor anyone else can force you to learn and understand what the manufacturers are saying and what their standards are. I was like that once too, a very long time ago, then I realized that the manufacturers know more about what they are making, and to what standards they are making it, than I do, so ... *I* listen to THEM.

    Your choice. Just making it clear that those are not my opinions but the opinions of the manufacturers.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Let's talk about this "listing" business for a bit.

    When UL tests a panel, what do they check for, exactly?

    Do we suppose that they test every conceivable combination of circuit breakers that can be put into the panel? Like a single 15 AMP breaker, then two, and on up to 42. Then start on 20 AMP breakers and on up to a panel full of 100 AMP or 125 AMP breakers, and then all possible combination of the various sizes in every possible position? Don't forget the arc fault and GFCI devices. And tandems. And quads. Or, do they simply test to see if the busses will handle the loads the manufacturers say they will with samples of the intended use breakers?

    How about the size of the wire used in all the various tests? Remember, for derating reasons it's entirely possible that a 15 AMP breaker could have #8 or #6, or larger wire installed. Were all these combinations tested as well? With all the possible breaker combinations?

    And, while this testing is going on, did we run this complete testing cycle with all the knockouts removed or all intact? If not, was the buss testing carried out again with each and every possible combination of knockouts removed? Was the cover on, or off for observation purposes? How about the door being opened or closed? Were all these tests run again to allow for plastic fillers when an extra space was opened? In all the possible places?

    So, when you wire a panel is it possible you are using a combination of breaker rating, placement, wire size, knockout position, and other breakers with their own wire sizes and knockout use, that UL didn't test?

    I'd say there probably is. And I'd willingly call any UL engineer that says all these combinations were each tested and documented a liar.


    Somewhere in all this I can't imagine that one of the conductors being spliced in that panel is going to violate the listing, any more than there not being a list of tested knockout, breaker size, placement, and wire size combinations does. I'd also guess that the larger panels used today versus those used years ago are bigger because of issues like splicing conductors for a variety of legitimate reasons.

    JMHO


  29. #29
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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    How does UL test a PVC junction box? After all it does not have any knockouts. Maybe they want it used without conduits? Obviously you cannot cut knockouts in it. It wasn't tested that way.

    How does UL allow all those extra holes in a 4 sq. box? Aren't ALL unused openings to be closed? Aren't those holes commonly used for mounting the box an opening? Websters would probably say a hole thru a material was an opening. Are those holes listed for use as a mounting method? Which ones did they use to mount the box during testing?

    I too feel like Bill. There is no way that UL could test for all the possible combinations of usage. I believe that they are looking for items to meet a certain design criteria, like flame spread, tripping within the correct time curve and other performance items. To expect more is ridiculous.

    Maybe if someone had actually installed things in the field they would see things in a different light.

    Last edited by Jim Port; 09-01-2009 at 06:53 AM.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Kriegh View Post
    Let's talk about this "listing" business for a bit.

    When UL tests a panel, what do they check for, exactly?
    They test for all required information as required by the standard to which the equipment is being listed.

    As an example, if the maximum heat rise is 75 degrees C above ambient at a prescribed ambient temperature, the panel is loaded to the maximum rating of that particular panel, installed in the prescribed manner, in an ambient temperature meeting the prescribed conditions, and the heat rise in the panel is measured.

    There are many tests made to ascertain that the samples meet the requirements of the standards.

    If a manufacturer wants to allow for through conductors and the heat rise associated with those through conductors, the manufacturer would contract with UL to develop a test to which the manufacturer's request would be tested.

    Let's say a manufacturer wanted to allow a #2 AWG copper through conductor with a 30 amp maximum load, the test would be developed for that purpose and to provide maximum loading and conditions. Then the panel would be labeled with that 30 amp maximum load on #2 AWG copper conductors. Changing the conductors to #10 with 30 amps would meet the maximum load but not the conductor size as the 30 amps on the #10 would generate more heat than the 30 amps on the #2.

    Thus, the manufacturer would establish what they want, a test would be designed to verify that does not exceed the other limitations on the panel, and the results of the test would establish the minimum/maximum marking for that use.

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    Default Re: Service Equipment Bonding

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Port View Post
    Maybe if someone had actually installed things in the field they would see things in a different light.
    Maybe if someone had actually read and understood the code and how listing and labeling works, whether or not they installed things in the field, they would see things in and different and correct light - as do those who have installed things in the field AND understand the code and how listings and labeling works.

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