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Old 01-23-2012, 10:49 PM   #1
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punch a meter can?


Among twenty or so other things happening here this spring I'll be changing the electric service so I can move the panel deeper into the house I need a disconnect but having some breaker space for the garage and HVAC will be nice too.

Some layout issues require me to have the UG feed come up to the Combination Meter can on the right side... my OCD nature would like to have it come through an LL into the side of the can (rather than over the top through the hub).
Q1) I can't remember ever punching the line side of a meter can. Is this OK?

Related to this... in the same can are two sheet metal "tunnels" to isolate the line wires from the load if a less OCD type were doing the job. If I'm keeping all the line wires above and all the load wires below Q2) can I remove those sheet metal tunnels? Will that affect any UL ratings or violate any NEC rules?

Thanks.

The Can: CH MBT48B200BTS
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Last edited by TarheelTerp; 01-23-2012 at 10:55 PM.
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:25 PM   #2
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punch a meter can?


1) You should check with your utility on the entrance and make sure the socket is approved by them. My utility is very specific on entering the left side.

2) Absolutely not!
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:31 PM   #3
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by zappa View Post
1) You should check with your utility...
Ya. Actually I'm having them come by in the AM.
Quote:
My utility is very specific on entering the left side.
Any reason why?
It sure seems like all the resi gear is set up for that...
but which is the cart and which the horse...
Quote:
2) Absolutely not!
er... based on what?
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:36 PM   #4
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by TarheelTerp View Post
er... based on what?
Those tunnels exist to provide isolation between the line and load conductors, possibly protecting the line side conductors from an arc flash in the load-side area of the can. Modifying the internals definitely voids the UL listing.
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:41 PM   #5
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by mpoulton View Post
Those tunnels exist to provide isolation between the line and load conductors...
I mentioned all that.
The question is: "If I'm keeping all the line wires above and all the load wires below" ...so that there's no need for isolation ...do those isolation devices need to remain in place?

It's just a few sheet metal screws... they aren't welded in.

Thanks for replying.
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:44 PM   #6
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punch a meter can?


I was in the middle of typing when mpoulton replied but my answers are similar, so I will continue.

I have never looked into why the left hand side as it hasn't inconvenienced me. Tunnel on that side?

It would be a UL violation and the utility wants to limit acess to unmetered wires.
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Old 01-24-2012, 12:01 AM   #7
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by zappa View Post
Tunnel on that side?
This can has a tunnel on each side; which allows lots of versatility for top/bottom options. The question is whether those options extend beyond these...
or for when there is no cross over at all (as I am doing).

I'm asking because I haven't done a lot of resi services (maybe 20?)...
but all were either straight top/hub or bottom center.

If anyone has ever come across this situation... please pipe up.

Last edited by TarheelTerp; 01-24-2012 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 01-24-2012, 01:58 AM   #8
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by TarheelTerp View Post
Among twenty or so other things happening here this spring I'll be changing the electric service so I can move the panel deeper into the house I need a disconnect but having some breaker space for the garage and HVAC will be nice too.

Some layout issues require me to have the UG feed come up to the Combination Meter can on the right side... my OCD nature would like to have it come through an LL into the side of the can (rather than over the top through the hub).
Q1) I can't remember ever punching the line side of a meter can. Is this OK?

Related to this... in the same can are two sheet metal "tunnels" to isolate the line wires from the load if a less OCD type were doing the job. If I'm keeping all the line wires above and all the load wires below Q2) can I remove those sheet metal tunnels? Will that affect any UL ratings or violate any NEC rules?

Thanks.

The Can: CH MBT48B200BTS
A1) unforetally that meter the left side is complety off limit with any punching or modifactions. ( I will expain more in a moment )

A2) there is a reason why the manufacter put a tunnel there in first place is protected the POCO conductors aka unmetered / unfused and there is a specail tab which the POCO will put a seal on that spot so that way it can not remove without breaking the seal.

Most case I know it will be in two spots where the POCO will put a seal on it.

I will post the photo so you can see why.



Hope this will clear up the detals.

Merci,
Marc
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Old 01-24-2012, 07:17 AM   #9
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punch a meter can?


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Originally Posted by frenchelectrican View Post
A1) unforetally that meter the left side is complety off limit with any punching or modifactions.
I don't want to punch the LEFT side.
I want to "modify the right side.

Quote:
I will post the photo so you can see why.
Hope this will clear up the detals.
Thanks for that photo and replying.
I was killing myself trying to a picture of an open can.
All I need now is the CH I'm actually looking to use.

But your comment doesn't explain or clear up anything whatsoever...
or at least anything that wasn't already understood and/or stated by me.
(I'm addressing CH directly now... I'm sure this has come up before)
-------
One more time:
Looking at the picture you see those sheet metal addition's on each side.
(On the CH MBT they have covers and all is set with screws).

When you feed from the bottom CH provides the tunnel on the left to keep the line side
wires away from the load portion on their way to the meter ring...
And in the event you need to exit the top of the can with your load side circuit wires the tunnel on the right will keep them away from the line portion. Very nice.

But what about when you're doing neither of those?
When the POCO Line wires stay in the upper half...
and the branch circuit wiring stays i the lower half?

Now what purpose does having them in place serve?

Last edited by TarheelTerp; 01-24-2012 at 07:23 AM.
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Old 01-24-2012, 07:45 AM   #10
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punch a meter can?


After seeing the open can I understand your question now. I would still leave them in as they are not hurting anything. Now, if the POCO crew removed the top metalwork for more room or OCD reasons than I would say it would be open season on the bottom one.
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:24 AM   #11
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punch a meter can?


Just curious... what is the layout problem that prevents the UG feed from entering the left bottom as designed?
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:32 AM   #12
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by HouseHelper View Post
Just curious... what is the layout problem that prevents the UG feed from entering the left bottom as designed?
My circuits all go LEFT... having the feed there is a problem.

Update: The technical people at CH: "I don't see any problem with that"
(waiting to get that in writing now)

Last edited by TarheelTerp; 01-24-2012 at 08:35 AM.
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Old 01-24-2012, 07:52 PM   #13
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by TarheelTerp View Post
My circuits all go LEFT... having the feed there is a problem.

Update: The technical people at CH: "I don't see any problem with that"
(waiting to get that in writing now)
If you are running in PVC conduit then it easy to do the offset kick that will useally take care of it but do not do any offset kick on POCO riser.

Just be aware before you get that meter socket check with the POCO some case they may have optional meter slection that can slove your issue.

Merci,
Marc
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:30 PM   #14
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punch a meter can?


POCO couldn't answer basic questions over the phone (like fees for splices)...
so I had to wait until today to see a "field engineer" in person.

Bottom line? "Drop back ten and punt"
---

I'm not paying $350 for 10 feet of wire and three splices.
I'll make do with a separate 200A main/loadcenter.
I'll feed that from the left of the existing meter can which I'll keep.

(That'll probably be the GE TM820RCUFLP for those keeping score)
Thanks for the help all.

Last edited by TarheelTerp; 01-24-2012 at 08:32 PM.
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:38 PM   #15
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punch a meter can?


Quote:
Originally Posted by TarheelTerp View Post
POCO couldn't answer basic questions over the phone (like fees for splices)...
so I had to wait until today to see a "field engineer" in person.

Bottom line? "Drop back ten and punt"
---

I'm not paying $350 for 10 feet of wire and three splices.
I'll make do with a separate 200A main/loadcenter.
I'll feed that from the left of the existing meter can which I'll keep.

(That'll probably be the GE TM820RCUFLP for those keeping score)
Thanks for the help all.
I will give you a little tip along the way just look at the POCO website and you may have to dig a little there is a meter socket listing what they approve for their system.

I am famauir with that GE box just make sure ya don't go crazy with 1 inch tandem or 1 inch two pole breakers espcally with MWBC or 240 volt load you have to pay attetion where it land in that panel.

Is any way you can take a photo what the exsting meter set up at the moment ?

Merci,
Marc
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