Original panel dates to 1957. No issues with it but I've read about the
many bad things about this unit. Also, the local codes now require 100A
service and the present panel with two mains of 30 for the dryer circuit
and 50 for the rest of the panel is now obsolete.
So the question is whether anyone is offering replacement internal guts for
this unit. It's model 116-68C. If so I think I'd go that route.
Old box is flush in the wall.
If an entirely new box is needed, could one remove the existing guts and
leave the old box in place? Mount a new panel right inside the old and
maybe use the old cover, cut a big rectangle out leaving just a sort of
rectangular ring and place it so as to cover the area where wires are
emerging from their conduits (formerly the interor of the old box) and
going an inch or so to enter the new box.
What if one got a new box that was intentially larger than the old and
mounted it on the surface in front of the old box? Again, the old box
would be stripped of guts, and the cover removed and the box left in the
wall. Wires could enter the new box from the rear. Those existing wires
able to reach a breaker could go directly in. Those too short would just
have new, longer runs pulled from their first place they go to (outlet box
I have a FPE Stab Lock panel in my house from 1979. It has a 100A main.
I've never had any problems with it. I also considered replacing it,
but I was told by a local electrician that they were improved in the
70's and a 1979 panel is as safe as any other breaker panel. While
everyone has their opinions, I am not sure what to believe.....
However, in your case that is a really old panel, and with the main's
problems, I'd be more inclined to change it.
I'm sure the guts of any panel can be modified to fit the panel, as long
as it is not too large, but you'll have to modify the cover door too, so
the breakers fit. That seems like a lot more trouble than just changing
the whole box. Either way, you'll have to pull the meter. If you have
to cut away a little plaster, why not just fill it in with some sort of
On Mon, 15 Dec 2014 22:36:32 -0600, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Look into the Cuttler Hammer replacement panelboards. They sell them
to fit a lot of the old cans. Then it is a pretty easy swap out.
Call the PoCo and tell them you are replacing the main breaker and you
have to cut the seal. The procedure may vary from place to place but
it is worth the call. You are not trying to work the panel hot and you
avoid "alleged theft of service" problems that may arise from a cut
On Mon, 15 Dec 2014 23:55:09 -0500, email@example.com wrote:
Anyone that tries to connect Mains which are HOT is insane. I've done
my share of replacing outlets and switches or fixtures, while HOT, but
doing anything with the Mains requires pulling the meter or having the
PoCo disconnect at the pole.
If something goes wrong when changing an outlet while HOT, a breaker or
fuse should blow, or can be turned off. But those Mains are not fused.
Yea, there is a fuse (of sorts) by the pole transformer, but before that
blows, people will die, or fires will start. And you cant just pull a
lever to disconnect.
I'm also a thinker, and also prefer not to throw
out things that work. This is one case where it's
not wise to mess around with saving old stuff.
I'd call several electricians to get estimates.
Hire the guy (gal) who talks slowly, makes sense,
and seem to know the task.
Christopher A. Young
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