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Old 12-19-2012, 12:42 AM   #16
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


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I was thinking the same thing, since the wire comes out pointing across the yard to my garage, it was probably an old wire going to it, and, there were 2 main breakers inside the 2nd bedroom closet where indoor box is located, which did not have any numbers or info on them, so I just flipped them both off for now, until I can find out which one the wire is on. I am definitely a little cautious about testing that wire ( it is about an inch and half in diameter, so is probably 240 v or something in that areabut will get as much info on the proper way to go about it, and am bidding on a good used multimeter on Ebay right now.
Thanks for all your ideas and help, and yes, I am very lucky I was not seriously hurt. I can't believe the thin coated handles on those metal shears kept me from feeling anything, as they were fried. I guess God still wants me to do something, considering how many times I have nearly killed myself doing routine things around the house. Knock on wood, 57 years old and a lifetime of hindsight, just a little low on foresight.

I was looking at wiring my garage soon, so this is all good to know, as I was wondering where I would hook my line going to the garage, now I see its already there.

BTW, what would be the best way to repair that gash I cut into the wire, if not duct tape, electrical tape?
Like really thick many times around?
Wire nuts would not work in this case. The exposed wire is about a foot long, and I cut into it right about 2 inches from where it comes out of the house, but the wire is still sticking out about a foot, only now it has a huge gash in it, leaving it exposed to rain etc.

G
I wrote the underline part.

Did you loose any power to upstair part ? If so that is your subpanel feed if not then it possiblty go to the other area.( could be to be used for garage circuit )

I doubt that is for large window shaker the size of conductor you describing it is too large for window shaker for sure.

It kinda common in old days to have breaker box in cloth closet and by the way it is no longer legal for quite a while.

Go ahead and post the photo or post the veido we will like to see that and also take a photo of the subpanel and main panel so we can able assit you on that.

Merci,
Marc

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Old 12-19-2012, 07:56 AM   #17
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


An inch and a half in diameter?? That is a huge wire.

I am with Marc... That must be a main feed or something. Maybe it is and old feed in from the main line that was cut but not disconnected and is now feeding back from the breaker panel?
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Old 12-19-2012, 08:03 AM   #18
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


I was wondering the same thing, it could have been tapped into the main side in the panel or something , you might have to have the power company pull the meter to kill it.

Probably not, but possible.

I would not assume that a breaker in a closet that just happens to be nearby has anything to do with that cable.
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Old 12-19-2012, 10:22 AM   #19
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


Hi,

No, the reason I think it is going to the inside panel, is the location of it, and direction it is pointing to, and
my general orientation of how pretzel logic the previous owners decided to do things. Not that I am any better, but it is easier for me to see other's mistakes than to actually do the right thing myself, on matters I know little about. Or in fact they may have done the best thing in this situation, so I can't rule that out either.

As far as codes, I definitely don't think having a live wire sticking out of your home with nothing connected to it is anything but a code violation anywhere,
but I will either fix it, remove it, or hook it up to something. In this town the city inspectors are pretty lax for the most part, and so that is not a factor in whether I would or would not do anything around my home. Most people in this town do not even get permits for various projects, unless the inspector happens to get wind of it, then they are asked to go get a permit. I on the other hand, paid for a permit to simply widen my front porch by 2 feet so my rockers would fit comfortably on it, and was even told by the lady in the permit office that it was "probably" not needed for that, meaning, technically it is, but...they probably wouldn't have said anything. But I wanted to be square with it so I bought a permit. Then the county tax appraisers got wind of my "improvements" to my property, most likely from the fact that I got a permit which they have access to, and my home value went up a thousand dollars (20.00+ a a year for the rest of my life). Their argument was, they didn't even have a front porch on my original assessment. Eventually I gave up arguing, as it was clear the more I did, the more they were going to try and find ways to raise my taxes even more.
Needless to say, I am not much of a believer in taxes or the ways they are levied.

Once I get some pics up, and I am headed to Walmart to shop for a camera today, I will show you what I mean. And btw, I know I sound like an idiot of sorts, but at my previous address, I built a 1,000 gal fish pond, and ran a 110v wire 100' up to the house and connected to the breaker box, inside a 1" schedule 40 pvc pipe, so though I am not professional level, I do have some working knowledge of these things, but for the most part am at basic level, very basic.

I want to comment on the level of integrity, ethics and sincerity, I am feeling from this forum. All of your comments warnings and useful knowledge is priceless, and rare in the online forum scenarios I have experienced.
By comparison, I can see how the danger level with working around electricity
influences that attitude, and the well deserved price of your services when doing this for a living.

Will post some pics soon,

George
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Old 12-19-2012, 05:25 PM   #20
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


(See pics below)


Okay,

Now that I look at it, it was'nt a 240 v wire but 110. I guess being from Texas where everything seems bigger, and the fact that I almost killed myself, may have made the wire appear bigger but it is obviously a 110. The old rusty box is the outside box and the other one is in the bedroom closet, the bare wire coming out of the house is about 3 or 4 ft to the right of the outside box, and lines up perfectly with the inside box. The 2 breakers at the top of the inside box are now in the off position, however, neither were tripped when I cut the line outside, and there is a lot of play in the switch, which makes me think they need to be replaced, and may not work at all. Or, the wire is connected to somewhere else. B ut all the other breakers under the main one that has the 20 AMP stamped on it were all on, and they all go to something in the house.

Also don't know yet how deep the cut into wire I made, so it may not be repairable, but once I verify the power to it is off, I could finish cutting it off and splice a new wire to it with wire nuts, if I wanted to still use it. Yes or No?

And I took a close up of those wires in the outside box, because that doesn't look safe, no wire nuts, and looks like some wires are exposed.











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Old 12-19-2012, 06:39 PM   #21
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


Is there a rod strung through all of the breakers in the 3rd photo?

Could you get another shot of that further away so we can see the whole thing? Is there a nameplate?

Cool shots, thanks, I love looking at the old stuff!
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Old 12-19-2012, 07:37 PM   #22
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


It says Magnetrip by Zinsco. Not sure what the rod is about, maybe you do. I am going to take the outer cover off and see if I can see where that exposed wire might be attached. My buddy came over with his cell phone and snapped the shots, so I can't get any more until I get a camera, but, I may go out and buy one.
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Old 12-19-2012, 07:39 PM   #23
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


Its not a rod, its a flat bar to hold them all in place as they slip onto it.
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Old 12-19-2012, 07:41 PM   #24
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


That wire by the way was cut where the black mark is right where it goes into the wall, but I could probably pull it out an inch or so. Dead, not live, hehe.
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Old 12-19-2012, 08:01 PM   #25
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


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(See pics below)Now that I look at it, it was'nt a 240 v wire but 110. I guess being from Texas where everything seems bigger, and the fact that I almost killed myself, may have made the wire appear bigger but it is obviously a 110.
There's no way to tell that by looking at it. A cable of any size can be a 120 or 240V circuit. I depends only on how it is connected in the panel. Very few circuits over 20A are 120V, but there are plenty of 240V circuits that are 15 or 20A and use #14 or #12 wire. The only way to know is to measure it or check in the panel.

Quote:
The old rusty box is the outside box and the other one is in the bedroom closet, the bare wire coming out of the house is about 3 or 4 ft to the right of the outside box, and lines up perfectly with the inside box. The 2 breakers at the top of the inside box are now in the off position, however, neither were tripped when I cut the line outside, and there is a lot of play in the switch, which makes me think they need to be replaced, and may not work at all. Or, the wire is connected to somewhere else. B ut all the other breakers under the main one that has the 20 AMP stamped on it were all on, and they all go to something in the house.
That Zinsco panel may need to be replaced. They are not as bad as FPE panels, but they are not modern technology and have a reputation for failing to trip when they should. It is quite possible that the breaker supplying power to that cable didn't trip. It should have. You better be EXTRA careful working on any wiring run from that panel - don't count on the breakers to do their job!

Quote:
Also don't know yet how deep the cut into wire I made, so it may not be repairable, but once I verify the power to it is off, I could finish cutting it off and splice a new wire to it with wire nuts, if I wanted to still use it. Yes or No?
Not likely. It definitely needs to be cut and reconnected at the point where you damaged it. The problem is that the splice must be in a box, and you need enough wire to work with (at least 6" out the front of the box). The damage is too close to where it exits the wall. It will need to be pulled back through the wall and the connection done on the inside where you have more wire available.

Quote:
And I took a close up of those wires in the outside box, because that doesn't look safe, no wire nuts, and looks like some wires are exposed.
Yeah, it sure doesn't look safe. That's a mess. It looks like it's been thoroughly rewired by someone who didn't know what they were doing. I'd start over with that.
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Old 12-19-2012, 08:07 PM   #26
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


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Is there a rod strung through all of the breakers in the 3rd photo?

Typical zinsco bus bar, with all the missing fillers to prove it
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Old 12-19-2012, 08:58 PM   #27
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Bare 240 volt wire...oh, and it


I posted a pic of the panel in your closet and it was salvaged from a mobile home park.

The round hole was for a twist lock socket for the motor home to plug into.

What state are you in?
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:03 PM   #28
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I guess the home inspector didn't feel any of this was a real problem when he approved my home for purchase. As long as it didn't have termites, hmmm.

Where to start, I guess I will pursue getting a multimeter, and take the cover off that Zinsco box to see if I can see if the actual wire may be in the back hooked up to anything. I should be able to disable the whole box from the outside box main breaker(s) but definitely will test it with a multimeter before touching, even if with a long insulated pole.

I see I may have to get an electrician to replace the inside box and may get a price on the outer one as well. Maybe I can do a package deal and get my garage wired too. I'm sure he can do something about that dangling wire outside as well, but this looks like it may go into the hundreds of dollars.

I thought it would help a lot if I knew something about it, before the technician starts seeing dollar signs before his eyes, so he doesn't try to scalp me too bad.

Thanks for all your help guys. I really appreciate it, even though I am still where I was, I feel a bit more enlightened.
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:04 PM   #29
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Reply to TTW, Texas. Lots of mobile home parks around here.
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Old 12-19-2012, 10:52 PM   #30
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this looks like it may go into the hundreds of dollars.
A couple thousand.

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