Looking for help in small shop wiring work


Old 11-04-15, 09:30 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Canada
Posts: 4
Looking for help in small shop wiring work

Hi DIY Forum members!

I have a small shop in the house. Unfortunately the original builder did not place any plugs in the shop, I guess calling it a storage room would be better suited.

Anyways, a hot tub was put in a while back and has since been sold and removed. A 50amp breaker was put into the main breaker panel of the house and the wires ran from the 50amp breaker outside to the hot tub.

What id like to do is, remove the wiring from the 50amp breaker and run a new wire out of the breaker box (also located in the shop) a few feet to the left of the breaker box and place a (my terminology is lacking) box that has 4 receptacles. I guess for that id need a box with a double gang.

My first question, probably simple but is it ok to run a 50amp line to power 4 receptacles (2 double receptacles). I will be running 2 3D printers and possibly 1 to 2 laptops. These don't draw a lot but being that it is a 50amp line, would it, in lamest terms take more to trip the breaker if there was a power surge etc? I could also run a surge protector off of the receptacles and then plug my electronics into these surge protectors.

Id like to keep this setup reasonably simple, my original intent was to have 3-4 separate boxes containing 1 receptacle each but this I believe would be a wiring nightmare. (This would allow the plugs to be spread out behind the work bench)

If I can go ahead with wiring the 50amp breaker to a box containing 2 double receptacles i believe that would be the easiest. I would also then be in need of assistance on how to wire each receptacle via 1 line coming into the box.

Hopefully this isn't to confusing. Sorry if it is. Thanks all and I look forward to your assistance.

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Old 11-04-15, 10:04 PM
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Welcome to the forums.

You can't connect standard receptacles to any circuit larger than 20A.
The main panel near to where you're working is a good thing. In this case the 2P50a breaker is of little use. If you were short on breaker space you could set a sub panel up on that 50A circuit.

Your best alternative is to remove the 2P50a breaker and put in two single 15a or 20a breakers and then connect your receptacles to those breakers.
Old 11-04-15, 10:15 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Canada
Posts: 4
Thanks PJmax. That answers some questions for sure. I can see 2 areas where I can come out of the current panel with 2 lines and run 2 separate receptacles thus spreading out where I can place my plugs.

I guess my next questions would be...

1. Is there a certain type of breaker(s) I will need that will fit my breaker panel. (photos can be added if needed)

2. What are the small metal rings called/sized that hold the wire where it enters/exits the breaker panel (photos can be added if needed)

3. Wiring size needed to run from each 15or20amp breaker to each receptacle.

4. Are all device boxes able to be mounted on the face of a wall. External. If not, which would I be after to be mounted on the face of the wall.

Thanks again!
Old 11-04-15, 10:34 PM
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 110
1. You need a breaker made for the brand and type of breaker box you have.

2. Those are Romex cable clamps. Any hardware store has them. Use them at your outlet boxes too, if the boxes are metal.

3. Use 12-2 cable for 20 amp. I would not use a 15 amp circuit for what you have planned. The cable must also be fastened to the surface of the wall. It must be visible or protected from damage. You could buy some surface mounted raceway instead of Romex.

Note that you may have to bring the room up to code. Code requires outlets on each wall, with no horizontal distance on the wall greater than 6 feet from an outlet.
Old 11-04-15, 10:55 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Canada
Posts: 4
Thanks MidiMagic,

Thats an excellent list for what I will need, and need to do! I will need to source some breakers that will fit. Source 12-2 wiring, enough to do 2 seperate recepticals, romex clamps for both the breaker panel exits and the outlet box's inlets. (4 in total) I will then need staples or some other external wire protectant such as raceway etc.

(2) 20A breakers
12-2 cable X feet to complete task (1 line to each outlet box)
(4) Romex cable clamps
(2) outlet boxes
(2) double receptacles
(2) outlet box face plates for a double receptacle
(X amount) Romex staples

Does this look to be a complete parts list?

Also, for wiring this setup in. I am good on the receptacle side of things. For the main breaker, is it best to throw the entire panel. Remove old wiring and breakers, install new breakers and then run new wiring. Turn on the complete breaker panel once the job is done. Or...

Could I wire up the receptacles, run all my wiring back to the main breaker panel, de-engergize the main breaker panel, remove old wiring/breakers, install new breakers, insert wires into the breakers and re-energize the system?

Option 2 being a way to shorten the time all appliances etc are offline. It seems ok but id like to know what folks with experience say. Thanks
Old 11-04-15, 11:01 PM
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: USA
Posts: 110
You can wire all of the wiring up to (but not inside) the breaker box before turning off the power.
Old 11-04-15, 11:05 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Canada
Posts: 4
Cheers. Thanks for the help!

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