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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    64

    Default small green wire

    I was wanting to kmnow if anyone has ever seen regular 12-3 wire with a green wire coming from it that is small. Like speaker wire almost. Was not able to follow all the way being as the box was a real rats nest. Am positive it came from the 12 gauge wire. Thanks

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,898

    Default Re: small green wire

    This may be an EGC from early generation NM cable.

    All answers based on unamended National Electrical codes.

  3. #3
    Roger Frazee's Avatar
    Roger Frazee Guest

    Default Re: small green wire

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Smith View Post
    I was wanting to know if anyone has ever seen regular 12-3 wire with a green wire coming from it that is small. Like speaker wire almost. Was not able to follow all the way being as the box was a real rats nest. Am positive it came from the 12 gauge wire. Thanks

    NM 600V cable never had a green insulated wire to my knowledge. Sometimes bare copper will take on greenish color so if the wire your talking about is bare and not insulated green then as Jim said it likely is NM cable from the 60's or there abouts


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Colorado Front Range
    Posts
    601

    Default Re: small green wire

    Back in the days of reduced size grounding conductors in NM cable some manufacturers used a wire with green insulation. I've seen both round insulation (looks like the other wires only smaller) and like this )( where the black and white nestled into the green insulation. The wire wasn't always completely covered by the second type. I saw this stuff installed new in the late mid 60s.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Chico,Ca
    Posts
    423

    Default Re: small green wire

    Sometime in the early 1970's the 16 AWG grounding conductor was replaced w/ a full size conductor. (Same size as the ungrounded & grounded conductors) & W/ some cable manufacturers they did have a green insulated grounded conductor. Maybe some time I can open up a circa 1968 Zinsco bolt-on panelboard that was wired w/ NM cable & green insulated 16 AWG grounding conductors & get a picture. BTW, off topic the Zinsco bolt-on breakers do not seem to have the trouble that their plug-in counterparts have, just super expensive because replacements are only avail. used, a 2-pole 20A was $140.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    60

    Default Re: small green wire

    I am currently remodeling a home built in 1956 and have run into a lot of this wire. Both green coated and bare copper. The conductors are 12 gauge but the grounds are 14 for the most part. There were a couple that looked to be 16 gauge. The original receptacles were all 2-wire, 12 guage; but for all the electrical heat (wall & ceiling) and a few 240 volt receptacles (local heating I assume) the wire was 12/2 with ground. All heating was set to pull 15 amps 120 or 240 volt. There were a lot of 15 amp fuses.


  7. #7
    Roger Frazee's Avatar
    Roger Frazee Guest

    Default Re: small green wire

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Kriegh View Post
    Back in the days of reduced size grounding conductors in NM cable some manufacturers used a wire with green insulation. I've seen both round insulation (looks like the other wires only smaller) and like this )( where the black and white nestled into the green insulation. The wire wasn't always completely covered by the second type. I saw this stuff installed new in the late mid 60s.
    Just goes to show you that if you have never seen it or heard of it that doesn't exist...


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    421

    Default Re: small green wire

    Yes some were 'coated' as mentioned, but not insulated, as it were.
    It was more of a very thin coating and appeared to have been applied at time of manufacturing rather than time of assembling.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Osceola, AR
    Posts
    310

    Default Re: small green wire

    Don't see any of this wire for a couple of years, then someone posts a comment about it and I get 3 in a week...

    Alton Darty
    ATN Services, LLC
    www.arinspections.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Osceola, AR
    Posts
    310

    Default Re: small green wire

    Sorry, I meant to attach pic

    Alton Darty
    ATN Services, LLC
    www.arinspections.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    421

    Default Re: small green wire

    Remember "covered or bare" in the NEC code regarding EGC? Well this is a covered GEC.
    I suppose a bare EGC in a sheath such as NM could be considered covered?


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