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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

Sorry for this may be a stupid question. I designed a circuit, and I just want to make sure the setup is correct by NEC ('14). I don't see why it wouldn't be, but I don't want to fail inspection.

I have a switched light outdoors, so I don't need neutral at the switch. The panel is between the switch and the light. I want to send the hot wire to the switch, but not the neutral, and bring back a switched hot to the panel, then to the light. meanwhile, the neutral only goes from the panel, like in the attached diagram.

Basically running a switch loop at the beginning of the circuit.

The actual situation is more complicated than this, because my switch is 3-way, and I have another 3-way between the panel and the light, but the philosophy is the same - except I have two travelers as opposed to a single switched hot.

Thanks!
 

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So you want to splice the wires in the panel for the switch loop?

That would mean connecting a black and white wire inside the panel.
I can say I have never seen that done before.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So you want to splice the wires in the panel for the switch loop?

That would mean connecting a black and white wire inside the panel.
I can say I have never seen that done before.
The switch loop leg leaves in conduit, so I can use two black wires. But theoretically, even a reidentified white wire could be connected to the breaker, right?

Even more (probably unimportant) details: after a conduit run, I change to 14-3 cable at a junction box, where I would use the reidentified white wire as "common", and the red and black are travelers. This is all on the switch loop side.
 

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I can't tell what you're trying to accomplish by your descriptions, except to say that designing a circuit that uses a panel as a junction box or trough is bad practice and reeks of ametuerish-DIYer cobbled electrical crud.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I can't tell what you're trying to accomplish by your descriptions, except to say that designing a circuit that uses a panel as a junction box or trough is bad practice and reeks of ametuerish-DIYer cobbled electrical crud.
If I wrote down all the details of the project, you would see that it is logical, safe, and practical. I didn't want to write a whole lot of irrelevant information for you to read. So can we stick to the subject please? Is there anything in NEC that forbids this?

I *will* write down the details, if people really want to know.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
No objection after more than a day, so I guess I'm fine. I will also read Article 404 to be safe.
 

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Since you aren't giving details of what you are doing and your sketch is elementary, it is hard to object.

JBfan and Lawnguy are both telling you they wouldn't do it/haven't seen it. I'd respect those answers.

Just on GP, my answer is run it line-sw1-sw2-load, and don't go back thru the panel.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm sorry if you interpreted my response as a rant. I really just wanted advice without putting you guys through too much reading.

Here is the full story.

I have a detached garage, and there will be a subpanel in the garage. The garage has a shop at the back with a side door. I will install a light at the side door, but I want to be able to switch the light from house, as well as from the garage.

I'm not allowed to power the light from the house, because only one feed can go to the garage. So I have to power it from the subpanel.

The subpanel and the house switch are 60 feet from each other. The other switch is an additional 30 feet from the subpanel, but exactly the opposite direction. The light is another 10 feet from the second switch. So I planned to send the power to the house switch first (but not the neutral), then come back to subpanel with two travelers, then go to the second switch, then the light. Neutral would only go from the subpanel to the garage switch to the light.

If I bring the neutral to the house and back, I would need 120 feet of extra wire. But if I don't, then I must bring back the travelers to the subpanel, because all conductors of the same circuit must run in the same conduit. I don't need to splice the travelers in the subpanel, but I have to let them enter. Then the travelers and the neutral leave the subpanel toward the garage switch in the same conduit.

I'm OK, if you tell me this is wrong, or DIY crap, or anything, but please give me some reasoning or a code violation.

Thanks, and sorry if I came off as arrogant.
 

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I'm sorry if you interpreted my response as a rant. I really just wanted advice without putting you guys through too much reading.

Here is the full story.

I have a detached garage, and there will be a subpanel in the garage. The garage has a shop at the back with a side door. I will install a light at the side door, but I want to be able to switch the light from house, as well as from the garage.

I'm not allowed to power the light from the house, because only one feed can go to the garage. So I have to power it from the subpanel.

The subpanel and the house switch are 60 feet from each other. The other switch is an additional 30 feet from the subpanel, but exactly the opposite direction. The light is another 10 feet from the second switch. So I planned to send the power to the house switch first (but not the neutral), then come back to subpanel with two travelers, then go to the second switch, then the light. Neutral would only go from the subpanel to the garage switch to the light.

If I bring the neutral to the house and back, I would need 120 feet of extra wire. But if I don't, then I must bring back the travelers to the subpanel, because all conductors of the same circuit must run in the same conduit. I don't need to splice the travelers in the subpanel, but I have to let them enter. Then the travelers and the neutral leave the subpanel toward the garage switch in the same conduit.

I'm OK, if you tell me this is wrong, or DIY crap, or anything, but please give me some reasoning or a code violation.

Thanks, and sorry if I came off as arrogant.
It's a unique situation for sure. I don't see any glaring code violations with your plan. Maybe someone better informed will chime in.
 

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I'd bring the circuit out of the box to a JB. Then run the run the conduits/wires in both directions from the JB.

It would keep the extra wires out of the panel, and it will be a heck of a lot easier to figure out by the next guy. And anyone working in the panel won't be puzzled by the non-conventional appearance of the wiring.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I'd bring the circuit out of the box to a JB. Then run the run the conduits/wires in both directions from the JB.

It would keep the extra wires out of the panel, and it will be a heck of a lot easier to figure out by the next guy. And anyone working in the panel won't be puzzled by the non-conventional appearance of the wiring.
These are good points, and I'll definitely consider doing this. However it is somewhat inconvenient, and it would be much easier to leave a wiring diagram for the next guy. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Only conductors within cables may be re identified. Conductors within conduit may not be re identified.
Yes, I know, I never said I would. It was a theoretical question after I wrote I would use black wires.
 

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I'm not the code person to answer.... and it is certainly an unusual situation... but is not a panel just a big JB.
 

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Panel fill is based on cross sectional area.
 
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