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#8 AWG solid strand aluminum?


Richard Moore
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Is answering your own post a sign of madness?

Me,

If you look very closely at an enlargement of the top wire it appears there are some stryations along the conductor although the end, and the wire below, do look "solid". What you (I) might have here is stranded copper #8 with field soldered ends (not the same as tinned copper), which would be OK. Best to report it as possible undersized aluminum and leave it to the electrician to determine for sure when he "evaluates" (read replaces) the panel.

I'm welcome!

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Bain, nice photo. In your case the grease is a bit of a giveaway. I can now say I've seen solid #8. Thanks.

The more I looked at my photo, the more I'm convinced that they are the field tinned or soldered ends of stranded wire.

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Even the dull color is more reminiscent of solder than aluminum. Hopefully it is Cu stranded and not Al, so at least they won't have to run new, larger wire to the range when they replace the panel. But, as I'm not certain, I've reported it as an "unknown" that needs to be investigated. I'll let Sparky scrape the conductors to find out one way or the other.

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Originally posted by Richard Moore

Found this today in a 1969 condo. As far as I could tell it was #8 solid AL. They ever make that? Undersized for a 40-amp breaker (range) no matter what, no handle-tie and, oh yes, a nasty Zinsco panel. Sparky recommended, but I don't think I've ever seen solid #8 before.

Not only did they make it, they still do.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Richard,

Too late for this one I'm sure but try taking photo's of the electrical panel without a flash. You get a much clearer picture without all the light reflecting off the plastic breakers and shiny paint and such. You just have to be able to hold the camera still long enough... Sometimes there is something around you can brace you forearm against.

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Originally posted by Richard Moore

Originally posted by Jim Katen

Not only did they make it, they still do.

Not doubting you at all Jim, but do you know where it's being used? Sure don't see it on any new residential construction around here.

Go offshore or out to most of the developing world; lotta aluminum wiring out there.

I think they also use it extensively in Canada, but I could be wrong. Any Canadians in here?

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Originally posted by Richard Moore

Originally posted by Jim Katen

Not only did they make it, they still do.

Not doubting you at all Jim, but do you know where it's being used? Sure don't see it on any new residential construction around here.

It's unusual for sure but I occasionally see it on new residential down here. Last one was probably about 6 months ago. Each time I see it, I snap a picture of it but then forget to file the pic away.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Not doubting you at all Jim, but do you know where it's being used? Sure don't see it on any new residential construction around here.
Go offshore or out to most of the developing world; lotta aluminum wiring out there.

I think they also use it extensively in Canada, but I could be wrong. Any Canadians in here?

Aluminum service entrance conductors are somewhat common here but never in branch circuits. Even though copper is going through the roof at the moment, I haven't heard of any proposed move to aluminum - but ya never know that could change???

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