Running electricity to a workshop

Old 12-19-03, 03:14 PM
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Running electricity to a workshop

I want to run elec. to a workshop. The shop will have a table saw and several other woodworking tools all using 120v. Can I use 10-3 wire to feed power to the shop from the main service panel in my house? Also can I use an existing 50 amp breaker in the main service panel to run the feeder wire?
Forgot to add that there is approx. 100' of wire length between the main panel and the sub panel.

Last edited by canfield; 12-19-03 at 03:31 PM.
Old 12-19-03, 06:59 PM
P Michael
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The most glaring problem is #10 guage wire is only good for 30 amps. Protect it with a 20 amp breaker. The extra diameter of the cable should help cover the voltage drop.
Then there is some question with 10-3. 10-2 should be no problem with the Code but more than one circuit to a separate structure brings other requirements such as adding a ground rod.
Since the hard part is digging the trench, may I suggest going for a larger size and perhaps a little subpanel?
Old 12-19-03, 07:42 PM
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You are allowed to run a multiwire circuit to a detatched building but you will be limited to 20A per circuit without some creative work. I opt for a panel also as its just about the same work anyway. You could use a 6/3 with ground and use that 50 to feed a small panel. Use a 6 space 100A main lug panel.

Last edited by sberry27; 12-19-03 at 07:58 PM.
Old 12-20-03, 06:01 AM
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I' ve already got a 125 amp panel to use in the workshop. Should I change the size of wire between the panels and what all is involved with installing a grounding rod?
Old 12-20-03, 10:52 AM
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It all depends on your current and future plans for the workshop. 10/3 is good enough for a small workshop with no frills such as air conditioning or a vacuum system. 6/3 would be good enough for a larger workshop and more frills. The design is kind of up to you and your budget. I think most people here would try to help you avoid future disappointment by recommending the 6/3.

By the way, 100 feet isn't far for a subpanel feeder. You can use the 30-amp breaker with the 10/3. This will provide you with up to 7200 watts of power. Only you can decide if that is enough. 6/3 will provide twice as much power.
Old 12-20-03, 11:54 AM
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I plan to install (3) flouresent light fixtures and maybe a small fridge and a microwave later. Sounds like the 6/3 wire would be the better choice. Only problem is, I've got the 10/3 patially pulled. I wonder if I can coil it back in the box and return it? Oh well might have to chalk that one up to experience. I will post back when the project is complete.

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