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tin coated copper


John Dirks Jr
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If you scratch a tin coated copper conductor with a flat head screw driver, would the copper underneath be evident without too much effort?

You wouldn't have to dig too far to see the copper would you?

Yes, it would be readily evident. The coating is very thin.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Good, 'cause I dug in fairly good at the panel and it was AL all the way.

Not only that but I pulled a receptacle cover too. Inside I saw the ground was AL and the hot and neutral were spliced to stranded copper with standard wire nuts.

The AL wire is much more pliable too, correct? I did that check too.

I don't know why I'm second guessing myself now. I felt pretty sure back then. Just wondering I guess.

Mid 60's condo.

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Hey John,

From the date of build, mid 60's it would be unlikely to be Tinned Copper.

Remember the recent thread about Tinned Copper? Did it have a rubberized woven cloth insulation or thermoplastic?

Don't know about more or less pliable but be careful testing such a thing when you suspect Aluminum, especially in anything early 60's as the Alum. from that era was quite brittle.

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. . . Don't know about more or less pliable but be careful testing such a thing when you suspect Aluminum, especially in anything early 60's as the Alum. from that era was quite brittle.

Douglas Hansen used to do a demonstration on that topic. He'd take a piece of old-alloy aluminum wire and bend it sharply back & forth. It would break pretty consistently after about 3 cycles. Then he'd repeat the experiment with modern AA8000 aluminum; he'd bend it back & forth till it was too hot to hold and it still wouldn't break.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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