12 Inch Wide 40 Space Breaker Panel??

Reply

  #1  
Old 10-06-14, 02:07 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
12 Inch Wide 40 Space Breaker Panel??

I need to replace a 12 inch wide 40 space breaker panel in a very tight area. All the panels I'm finding are either 14.25 or 16 inches in width. Does anyone know of a make or model that is 12 inches wide? Many thanks.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 10-06-14, 02:19 PM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
What brand do you have, now? What is the main breaker amperage?
 
  #3  
Old 10-06-14, 02:42 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,361
As far as I know all the newer panel are 14" wide to fit in a standard stud bay and to also comply with the gutter wiring space requirements.
 
  #4  
Old 10-06-14, 03:23 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 11,984
If you only have 12" of space I suggest surface mounting the panel.
 
  #5  
Old 10-06-14, 04:54 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
It's an old Standard Pacific setup.
 
  #6  
Old 10-06-14, 04:59 PM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
Good change reason. Do you have the space to cut out the containing studs the height of your new box and install scabs on either side, leaving 15" to install your box?
 
  #7  
Old 10-06-14, 05:36 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Not really. The meters (four rows of five) are smack up against the box on the left side and the right side has other issues so I am pretty much limited to 12 inches wide although I have 48 inches of height which is a lot.
 
  #8  
Old 10-06-14, 05:38 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,361
Post a pic and someone might see an option for you.
 
  #9  
Old 10-06-14, 06:23 PM
Member
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 953
Cutler Hammer makes the BR1020B100 which is 11.25" wide but is a 10/20. 15" high.
 
  #10  
Old 10-06-14, 06:39 PM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,221
It's an old Standard Pacific setup.
Are you sure it isn't a Federal Pacific Electric or Federal Electric panel? Never heard of Standard Pacific before.
 
  #11  
Old 10-06-14, 06:54 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Are you sure it isn't a Federal Pacific Electric or Federal Electric panel? Never heard of Standard Pacific before.
You're 100% correct. I think it's Pacific Electric. In any case, one of those that is a notorious hazard.
 
  #12  
Old 10-06-14, 06:59 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Cutler Hammer makes the BR1020B100 which is 11.25" wide but is a 10/20. 15" high.
Thanks. That may come in handy...
 
  #13  
Old 10-06-14, 07:34 PM
Justin Smith's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Cressona, Pa, USA
Posts: 2,546
Sorry I'm not quoting, but from my experience FPE hides under a few names. That stuff is like a disease here..
 
  #14  
Old 10-07-14, 02:51 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
You mentioned a bank of meters in post 7. Is this a rental unit, or multi dwelling? Or is it a commercial application? Just curious about all the meters.
 
  #15  
Old 10-07-14, 07:05 AM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,221
You're 100% correct. I think it's Pacific Electric.
Never heard of that one either. Are you sure it's not Federal Pacific Electric?

Justin Smith

Sorry I'm not quoting, but from my experience FPE hides under a few names. That stuff is like a disease here..
Slightly

Justin, the loadcenters (light duty panelboards with plug-in breakers) from Federal Pacific all were under the name Federal Pacific Electric from what I have seen. The panelboards (heavier duty panelboards with bolt-in breakers used mostly in commercial work) and switchboards can still be found under the names Federal Electric, Federal Pacific Electric or even Challenger in the '80s. It all depends on the generation of the equipment. It does get confusing because some later generations of Sylvania/Challenger equipment also used Zinsco style fusible switches and breakers. I am not even addressing the old Sylvania style fusible switches and breakers. Just be glad they are no longer produced.
 
  #16  
Old 10-07-14, 08:13 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 32,669
Is there a space next to the panel? If so why not a smaller panel and a subpanel in the space next to it if a surface panel as previously suggested is not acceptable?

Are you sure a standard stud space wasn't reduced to fit the panel? If that is true then with minimal effort you might be able to enlarge the stud space. Suggestion: If there is a baseboard remove it and remove a strip of Sheetrock. Check what the studs look like at the stud plate. You might see a second stud making the space smaller or if it is a standard size space then that means they just nailed spacers in the area of the panel.
 
  #17  
Old 10-07-14, 09:31 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Photo of the 12 Inch Box

Post a pic and someone might see an option for you.
I've attached a photo of the current 12inch wide box without the cover on so you can see what sort of space is inside the current panel box and how it is wedged in between meters and other obstructions.Name:  Box minus cover.jpg
Views: 2525
Size:  32.5 KB
 
  #18  
Old 10-07-14, 12:18 PM
Justin Smith's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Cressona, Pa, USA
Posts: 2,546
Would you be able to post more pictures of the panel, and the breakers themselves? They look from this angle as lug-to-lug breakers.
 
  #19  
Old 10-07-14, 01:26 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Name:  Closer View.jpg
Views: 2210
Size:  45.9 KBReady for your close-up?
 
  #20  
Old 10-07-14, 01:48 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 32,669
Would it be possible to move the equipment next to the panel?

Opinion: Thread would have perhaps progressed more quickly with full information. Answers were based on a single family residential setting and perhaps a finished living space. Is the panel in NYC as indicated by your city of residency in your profile? Are you a licensed master electrician? If it is in NYC and you aren't you need to leave this to an electrician.
 
  #21  
Old 10-07-14, 03:34 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
I have zero intention of doing the work myself (despite the fact this is a DIY forum). I plan to meet with an electrician and have him do the job but I find in every aspect of repairs whether they be electric or plumbing or something else, the more you know, the better off you are when dealing with a professional. You know when you're being BS-ed, upsold unnecessarily and/or if the guy is treating you fairly. By posting this thread on the forum, I wanted to hear from pros on what the solutions are to the problem at hand. If someone comes up with a good idea that the electrician completely neglects to mention, or knows of a 12 inch box that the electrician doesn't, I'm better prepared to say "what about x"?
 
  #22  
Old 10-07-14, 03:54 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 32,669
Fair enough.

.
 
  #23  
Old 10-07-14, 04:08 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 235
Narrow Panel

Eaton makes at column mount panelboard that is 225A 42-Cir 120/240 1ph3w, either MLO or MCB. It is 81" High x 8.63 Wide x 6.0 Deep. This would not be a load-center and the breakers would be more costly than plug-in but is narrow. They are mainly used as the name suggest, on Columns in warehouse, etc.
 
  #24  
Old 10-07-14, 04:12 PM
Member
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 1,147
The box itself looks fine. I'd be tempted to buy DIN rail lug-lug breakers and not even mess with replacing the box.
 
  #25  
Old 10-07-14, 04:14 PM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: port chester n y
Posts: 2,117
Are the Conductors that terminate on the Left side of the CB's conductors from the "Load" side of the individual meter-sockets?; if so , then each CB has "Line" and "Load" terminations.

What are the amp-ratings of the CB's ? ; 40 / 60 amps ?; the size of the Conductors appear to be in that range. Also , what identification, if any , is one the cover of the enclosure ?

IF- IF -- these CB's are protecting Feeders to individual apartments , then you will need an panel with X-# of individual 2-pole CB's .
 
  #26  
Old 10-07-14, 04:35 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Yes. Meters are on the left, power goes from there through breakers and then up to 20 individual apartments that each have their own breaker boxes. Each breaker on the box in question is 20 amps.Low by today's standards but it works.
 
  #27  
Old 10-07-14, 05:30 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
The box itself looks fine. I'd be tempted to buy DIN rail lug-lug breakers and not even mess with replacing the box.
I spoke with a guy about these and he says they are close to $100 each! If that's true we're talking up to $4,000 just for the parts. That's definitely a non-starter.
 
  #28  
Old 10-07-14, 05:49 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: NJ - USA
Posts: 43,494
Obviously no standard panel would work in this case as you don't have or need any buss bars for the breakers. I find it kind of interesting that single pole breakers were used as mains.
Also curious is the lack of neutral wiring.

The way I see it..... rail mounted breakers is going to be your only choice there.
Coming up with a cover will be interesting.

GE Distribution THQC2120WL Molded Case Circuit Breaker; 20 Amp, 120/240 Volt AC, 2-Pole, DIN Rail Mount
 
  #29  
Old 10-07-14, 07:12 PM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,221
The meters (four rows of five) are smack up against the box
Ok, you have 20 meters.

I need to replace a 12 inch wide 40 space breaker panel
And you have 40 single pole breakers, all 20 amp.

How old is this building and how large are the apartments? What electric appliances do the apartmentshave, if any? Any gas appliances? How big are the panels in each apartment and how many circuits do they typically have? I am thinking maybe 2 or 3 circuits per apartment. What is the voltage to each apartment? What is the source of heat and hot water to the apartments?

The breakers appear to be Zinsco style breakers, but they are not mounted on bus bars, that is a good thing. The Zinsco weak point was it's connection to the bus, not a failure to trip. Why do you need to replace this panel?
 
  #30  
Old 10-07-14, 08:10 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
The breakers appear to be Zinsco style breakers, but they are not mounted on bus bars, that is a good thing. The Zinsco weak point was it's connection to the bus, not a failure to trip. Why do you need to replace this panel?
The insurance company did a standard inspection of the building and spotted the Federal Pacific breaker and has "recommended" (i.e. do or we cancel the policy) we replace the existing panel. If your point is valid, it may be possible we can convince them otherwise. However, I don't want an unsafe condition. Can other members chime in as to whether you agree with CasualJoe on the need to replace the panel?

As to your other questions electricity is only used for appliances and lights. Heat, hot water and cooking gas are all separate.
 
  #31  
Old 10-07-14, 08:16 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: NJ - USA
Posts: 43,494
Where is Federal Pacific written on there ?
I don't recognize the breakers. Joe says they are Zinsco type. They definitely aren't the type of breakers that caused Federal Pacific the problems.

Unless you've had problems with the breakers.... like not being able to reset them.... then they should be fine. I imagine you do have them routinely trip as that isn't very much power for a modern apartment.
 
  #32  
Old 10-07-14, 08:16 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 32,669
electricity is only used for appliances and lights
Modern code requires two 20 amp circuits just for the kitchen. Even a small window A/C requires 7 amps. Sure feel sorry for your tenants.
 
  #33  
Old 10-07-14, 09:20 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by ray2047 View Post
Modern code requires two 20 amp circuits just for the kitchen. Even a small window A/C requires 7 amps. Sure feel sorry for your tenants.
Actually, because the heavy duty uses such as heat, hot water, cooking and dryers are all out of the equation the tenants rarely pop a breaker. Just don't run the microwave, ACs and your hair dryer at the same time!
 
  #34  
Old 10-07-14, 09:23 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by PJmax View Post
Where is Federal Pacific written on there ?
I don't recognize the breakers. Joe says they are Zinsco type. They definitely aren't the type of breakers that caused Federal Pacific the problems.

Unless you've had problems with the breakers.... like not being able to reset them.... then they should be fine. I imagine you do have them routinely trip as that isn't very much power for a modern apartment.
I'll check tomorrow to see if Federal Pacific is actually on the breakers.
 
  #35  
Old 10-07-14, 09:32 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: NJ - USA
Posts: 43,494
You don't have to quote..... feel free to shout right out.
 
  #36  
Old 10-08-14, 07:48 AM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,221
I'll check tomorrow to see if Federal Pacific is actually on the breakers.
So far you have never said this was a Federal Pacfic Electric (FPE) panel. You called it "Standard Pacific" and "Pacific Electric". Can you provide a picture of the label or whatever you are seeing with a name or logo on it? The insurance company must have seen something to think this is a Federal Pacific panel, what did they see? This wouldn't be the first time an insurance inspector was wrong.

As I said in an earlier post, those are Zinsco style breakers, but they are not mounted on traditional Zinsco busbars, but have power in and power out lugs. A replacement breaker of this type might be pretty hard to find.

Here is a picure of a UBI branded replacement breaker for a Zinsco loadcenter. Look closely at the molded case and you'll see how it closely it resembles the molded cases of the breakers in your panel, right down to the slots where Zinsco breakers connect to Zinsco busbars. Your breakers are probably a bolt-on version or they would simply fall out of the panel.

Zinsco Thick 40 Amp 3/4 in. Single-Pole Type Z UBI Replacement Circuit Breaker-UBIZ40 at The Home Depot

For comparison purposes, I'll now show you a UBI branded Federal Pacific Electric replacement breaker so you can see the difference when comparing the molded cases.

Connecticut Electric 20 Amp One Pole Thick Type F UBI Replacement Circuit Breaker-VPKUBIF20N at The Home Depot

Now, do you see the difference?


I just found a picture on Amazon of an original Zinsco bolt-on breaker. This one doesn't have the busbar slots in the molded case, but the bolt-on Zinsco breakers I remember seeing all had the slots. The only real difference I see besides amperage is that this breaker is a 3-pole and yours are all 1-pole breakers.

http://www.amazon.com/QB2430-100-Zin.../dp/B00A2BQ5BU
 
  #37  
Old 10-08-14, 08:26 AM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: port chester n y
Posts: 2,117
The most practical and least-expensive solution is 2-pole molded-case CB's with "Line" & "Load" lugs. The problem is setting the CB's securely in place which requires some mechanical ingenuity.

Possibly a ridged metal bar that spans across all the CB's when they are "stacked" vertically side x side. The bar would have taps for machine-screws with the taps exactly over the center of the CB set underneath the vertical support-bar. The purpose of the machine-screw is to "compress" the CB firmly in place. This would require a metal bar between the face of the CB and the bottom of the machine-screw so that the compressive force is applied across the entire width of the C.B.

This must be effected without interfering with the operating handle of the CB. Also, top and bottom brackets against the top and bottom sides of the CB "stack" to further reinforce the assembly.

As to the rating of the replacement CB's, much depends on the ampacity of the "Load" side conductors to the individual apartments. If they are larger than #12 , you can install a CB with a rating equal to the amp-rating of the "Load" side conductors.

An important question is; does this solution violate any NEC Article?
 
  #38  
Old 10-08-14, 05:52 PM
CasualJoe's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 9,221
The most practical and least-expensive solution is 2-pole molded-case CB's with "Line" & "Load" lugs.
The issue is the insurance company thinks these are Federal Pacific Electric (FPE) breakers. If they can be convinced otherwise, there is no issue or need to replace the panel. This would be the least expensive solution. I say the breakers are not by Federal Pacific Electric, but are Zinsco style which means they could even have a GTE/Sylvania name on them, but they look old enough to have the Zinsco name.

I see two alternate solutions should the insurance company resist keeping this panel. 1.) Contact Cutler-Hammer and have them make a custom interior and trim/cover/door for the 12 inch wide panel with modern 2-pole breakers with both line and load terminals in their custom shop in Fenton, MO. 2.) Remove the items to the right of the panel and relocate them and then install a modern panelboard with 2-pole breakers.

We are still waiting to see if the OP can provide some pictures with the Federal Pacific name on the breakers or panel.
 
  #39  
Old 10-08-14, 06:07 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: NJ - USA
Posts: 43,494
then install a modern panelboard with 2-pole breakers.
I've never seen a modern panelboard with rail mounted breakers. This may be a complete custom panel. There are 20 meters feeding those breakers so there are no buss bars.
 
  #40  
Old 10-08-14, 06:21 PM
pugsl's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 7,684
My curiosity What are those black and white (wires??) Going over all the breakers? Wires to tie breakers in??
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'