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hbomb341

Power Distro Panel - Almost Done

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Ok Guys, I figured it was time to share a few picture of my big project that has taken up most of my time. Below are a few build pictures and the final product. I am still tweaking it and taking recommendations / snide remarks. But this knocked off MOST of my todo’s.

The basic run down on it a 100 Amp Sub Panel 12 breakers with growth to 24, 20 amp’s each, 12 20 amp GFCI’s, 12-2 AWG Wire, {Yellow - Plugs}, 1 AWG Main, what you see on the outsides are LED Nightlights for a GFCI indicator. They don’t look the best but are extremely functional and lot less work and cheaper then building it in. Also I have attached a few picture of my “Sleigh” where all of my controllers are mounted (Missing 3 controllers).

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Sub-Panel

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{The bag was replaced with a clamp - Temp Fix at 2AM}

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Sleigh

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If you are wanting to take one of these on the best thing I can say is PLAN and take it slow. Also talking an Electrician (THANK YOU so much Michael) and people who have done it, I would say is a prerequisite. I wanted to go over the top but you defiantly don’t have to so remind the simpler it is the easier to fix.

If you have any questions feel free to contact me.

Harrison

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Wow, that looks great. The nightlight idea as a status light is very cool.

Some suggestions.


  • If you are using aluminum feeder wire (I cant tell what you are using) then you need to put nolox on your lugs.
  • I'm not sure if an inspector would let you pass with all your wires going through one clamp. I think 2 or 3 wires per is the standard but I would check with your electrician friend.


Looks great otherwise.

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If I may make a suggestion.
It's hard to tell from the picture but I suggest using some Anti-Oxidant Compound like NOALOX on the end of the 1 AWG wire. The compound keeps the aluminum wire from oxidizing and corroding the connections.

I hope there is a 100 AMP breaker protecting the sub-panel. :shock:

Good Luck with your project!


Edit: web link

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Wow,

I wish I had the time and money to upgrade my Service or put in an addition to what i have now. Oh well, for now we're adding a transfer panel for when the power goes out. Not Christmas oriented just comfort oriented.

We had a few bad storms roll through here last year, So I bought a Genset and I'm going to wire up a Transfer panel to feed the fridge and heat and whatever else I can squeeze on to my Genset.

Ok off topic.

Nice setup for your System!...

-Evan

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NWSanta wrote:

Wow,

I wish I had the time and money to upgrade my Service or put in an addition to what i have now.

That's what I said! This looks great. it is definately were I will need to be in a few years. With my wimpy 16 channels I'll be fine. I'm thinking of increasing to 80 channels next year and the amperage rationing will begin in earnest then!

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Thanks Guys, I like it, being my first year and with all the planning that is need I figured a small power invest was worth it. So come December if I blow a fuse there is a larger issue. Plus if you are going to do it, you might as well do it right and MAXED.

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Hi,

I too put a lot of outlets in my Garage, and then run the cords to where I place the Boxes. Early on I was advised to place the boxes close to what they control ... I promptly ignored that sage advice ... I have since realized the error of my ways. But, I am still interested in the benefit of having them all inside. So, Questions:


  1. How will you handle all the cords that need to enter your garage? Under the door? Through a window? Or have you built a "port" in your garage to pass cords through to the outside?
  2. If under the door? What's your plan for keeping it looking good? And out of the way of Cars?


Look forward to seeing your solution ... looks good though ...

T

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I think I am going to build a "port" and build wiring harness to parts of my yard to make it look decent. It is next on my list so we will see. I know I am using SPT-1 for all of my runs, all ready have it ordered.

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H -

I like the port idea ... thougtht about it myself several times, and still may do it in the future.

For me, I thought I would need a port on both sides of the driveway ... cause I didn't want to have to handle cords going across the drive path into the garage. The other problem I thought about was the varmits (sp?) ... I just didn't want to leave a hole where a wayward mouse, etc., could come easily into the garage.

I finally chose to put the boxes in weather proof/protectd areas nearer the display ... and just run heavy extension cords out with the power to the individual boxes.

I bought 20 100ft 15Amp cords ... very heavy, and I do get tired of picking them up at the end of the season each year. But, I can tell you ... it is nothing compared to dealing with all the long cords that connect to individual channels in the display.

I hope you don't have many long runs to deal with. The footage of cords racks up quickly.

Good luck,

T.

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I really like what I see. Safty Safty Safty can't be stressed to many times. I run 11-225amp pannels on one of my displays and keeping the kids out of my connections is my biggest concern. Remember to have the top breaker where the shortest adult in the house can reach it with ease. Keep up the good work, have fun and be safe. Sorry to come back to this BUT running 15amps on each outlet you will pull 180amps. Running LOR will keep you from maxing out the main breaker. You will be running really warm. Buy yourself a cheep amp meter and when you get everything running check the amp draw on each main wire (the two feeding the 100amp breaker). Christmas lights are funny that way, when you connect 10 cords pulling 10amps each you will have 100amps connected load. My pannels run so hot, on a cold night we open the doors to keep warm.

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James Shelby wrote:

I really like what I see. Safty Safty Safty can't be stressed to many times. I run 11-225amp pannels on one of my displays and keeping the kids out of my connections is my biggest concern. Remember to have the top breaker where the shortest adult in the house can reach it with ease. Keep up the good work, have fun and be safe. Sorry to come back to this BUT running 15amps on each outlet you will pull 180amps. Running LOR will keep you from maxing out the main breaker. You will be running really warm. Buy yourself a cheep amp meter and when you get everything running check the amp draw on each main wire (the two feeding the 100amp breaker). Christmas lights are funny that way, when you connect 10 cords pulling 10amps each you will have 100amps connected load. My pannels run so hot, on a cold night we open the doors to keep warm.

James, being that you are an electrician, I would really like to see photos of your sub panels and your display also. I am working on building a new subpanel myself and I am always looking for inspiration.

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Tim,
I know you have seen the photo's via email but to all you who know such things, I can't post more than one photo at a time. Could someone tell me how to post more than one photo so I can show my setup too?

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James Shelby wrote:

Tim,
I know you have seen the photo's via email but to all you who know such things, I can't post more than one photo at a time. Could someone tell me how to post more than one photo so I can show my setup too?

To post more than one image at a time, you will need to upload the images to a web site, then use the
[img]

command in order to call the images.

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Don is right. I use photobucket. It is one of the easiest ones to use.

Greg

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James Shelby wrote:

Could someone tell me how to post more than one photo so I can show my setup too?


I think what most people do is post the photos to another service. One that I found but never used is http://imageshack.us/

Then what you do is click the Insert image button(the icon that has 3 little balls, one is blue, one is red and one is green) on the tool bar when you compose a message and enter the path to the file. Repeat for each image

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Thanks for all the help I was hoping it would be a simple thing but it looks like it is way over my head. Again thanks for the support.

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James,

Could you email me a few to:

tomkendo@sbcglobal (dot) net

(to prevent spammers)

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Here are the pics James sent me


Photo's go as follows; left green box is 13,600 volt switch
middle green box is the 208-3phase 1000kva
transformer
right gray box is the main breakers.
next is 3000amp main.
then 4 of nine 200amp main breakers.
then 5 of nine 200amp main breakers.
next 5 of 11 225 amp panels the square boxes on
bottom are the 200amp lighting contactors.
then one of the lighting contactors.
all that 1" pvc going out to the outlets.
5 more panels feed from those first breakers.
I think it would be cool to post these to show everyone you can go big.
This is only 2/3 of what I have but it is the largest set up I have. I
added two more 200amp breakers this year to help with an overload problem
I had last year. I also moved all my LOR into it's own panel with it's
own lighting contactors.






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I really like your setup, I am not a electrician but feel I could build the panel and wire the outlets, I would want a electrician to do the connection from box to sub.

I would think eventually I will go to 6 lor 16 channel boxes . for the DIY guy what do think the approx cost was (if you don't mine saying) for your setup for breakers , GFI's panel etc.



Larrytcupp

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Man that is a tuff one. Just one set up; 225 amp panel with 42 bolt in breakes around $600, box for the contactor around $200, contactor $1200 and miles of wire and conduit, underground boxes, outlets, outlet boxes and all that little stuff who knows. Just to set up power for my LOR's was $6300. But for your home a sub panel with breakers, wire, outlets and all the little stuff somewhere between $500 and $1000.

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