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Can anyone solve this mess?


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1950s ranch - basically all original equipment as best I can tell.

The overhead drop goes to the meter, then splits (speculating as I can't see inside the meter) and goes to two panel - one next to the meter and one on the inside of the house. Both have neutrals and grounds bonded.

I can't decide if these are both service panels or both subs. It's like there are two main panels.

There's no main shut-off at the meter (not sure if that helps clarify).

In the end everthing is old and one of the panels is a Zinsco so there was plenty to justify just calling for an electrician to sort it out.

I've just never seen anything like it.... any thoughts?

Edit - the smaller set of wires at the weather head is coming back from the meter and going to the panel inside the house.

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1950s ranch - basically all original equipment as best I can tell.

The overhead drop goes to the meter, then splits (speculating as I can't see inside the meter) and goes to two panel - one next to the meter and one on the inside of the house. Both have neutrals and grounds bonded.

I can't decide if these are both service panels or both subs. It's like there are two main panels.

There's no main shut-off at the meter (not sure if that helps clarify).

In the end everthing is old and one of the panels is a Zinsco so there was plenty to justify just calling for an electrician to sort it out.

I've just never seen anything like it.... any thoughts?

I agree that they're both service panels, but I think that one or the other -- probably the Zinsco -- was added later.

Even in 1950, all of the service disconnects were supposed to be grouped in one location, so this was wrong from the time the second panel was installed.

From the 1947 NEC:

2351.a The disconnecting means shall be manually operable. It may consist of not more than six switches or six circuit breakers in a common enclosure, or in a group of separate enclosures, located at a readily accessible point nearest to the entrance fo the conductors, either inside or outside the building wall. . . ."

Also, as you probably know, PGE doesn't like the service wires to be connected to fascias, barge rafters, & the like. They want them connected to a "significant structural member."

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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