Sounds good, except if the lights are fed from the subpanel.....
Even with a main lug subpanel w/o the breaker on the incoming feed you can
quickly kill all (or some) of the power by hitting the breakers.
I have a 60 amp main lug subpanel with 8 slots, 4 filled. I could kill all
the power only marginally faster if I had a main breaker. Regardless of the
setup, you have to recognize a problem, realize you need to kill the power,
run over to the panel, open the cover and reach up and switch the
breaker(s). I also have the option of just switching the circuits feeding
the receptacles and leaving the lights up or vice-versa (though I do have a
light on a separate circuit run directly from the main panel that I always
My 2 cents....
Go to your local DIY and buy a 125A, main lug only 12/24 panel.
Add a 2P-60A main c'bkr kit and an insulated earth ground bus bar kit.
Use 1P-20 for receptacles and lighting circuits.
Use 2P-40 for a 5 HP air compressor and a 2P-30 for your table saw.
Other loads as req'd.
| 60 amp breaker and properly sized wire is safe and within code. Others
| have suggested to go for the extra capacity for a full 100amp. Well
| for one thing, you cannot get a branch breaker in your main panel sized
| for 100 amp. I think 60 amp is the maximum. You're talking dedicated
| feed to the shop instead of branch off the main when you go 100 amp.
| Also you are talking about wire that's getting to be a real bear to
| handle and much larger conduit.
| I'm with you on going for 60amp. its ample for a home workshop.
Not too sure where you're coming from, Bob, as my shop is fed from a 100A breakered service that is itself a drop from my 100A main service. The feed wire is about 1" thick (I think #1). The electrician who installed it had no problem doing so.
The setup allows me to isolate the shop service such that I can supply emergency power to my furnace and/or air conditioner whenever the hydro is out. It tends to piss the neighbours a tad when I have the only lights in town.
I currently have 3 15A 110 drops from it and 1 20A 220 for my compressor. As this panel used to be my main (until I upgraded to breakers) there is lots of room for expansion.
There seems to me to be no reason not to go for more capacity when it is available.
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