Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Professionals and Amateurs

Today the electrical upgrade to 3283 moved indoors. The B&L crew finished up the majority of work to replace the old electric service panel and organize the existing electric wiring. It was a lot of detail work....finalizing splices in junction boxes, fastening wires to supports, installing a smoke detector and providing a hook up for the water system pressure control valve.

But the most noticeable [and photogenic] activity today was the connection of the wires from all the house's circuits to the new "load center."  Andy claimed not...but I have to believe that at the annual Electrician's Conference there is a contest to determine who can feed a circuit breaker box with dozens of pairs (triples) of wire the most neatly. He did confide in me the un-written rule that once one electrician begins to "trim out" a circuit box no one else finishes. Its one man's work product.
With circuits feeding from the right side of the panel in place,
Andy works to organize and connect those to be connected on the left.
The "finished" load center feeds 20 existing circuits and provides breakers
for two new circuits in the addition.  I'll be adding a third new circuit,
and B&L will add one new 240 amp circuit to serve the garage.
It's almost a shame that well organized wiring is covered with the face plate.
But, the cover at least provides spaces for each circuit to be labeled.
I guess I appreciate the work of professional electricians because I have for much of my life felt I was an above average amateur one. B&L handled getting the "old" cottage in order. I'll be wiring the addition. Their work will be completed and inspected by the Township Electrical Inspector. Then I will apply for a permit for the addition and complete that work.

But, today I began to set up for running the wires in the addition.  Amid a trip back to Lowes for some additional supplies, visits from potential landscapers, an asphalt paving contractor, and a tree expert [to give advice on making sure the large oak east of the cottage remains healthy] I managed to drill a bunch of holes and install some boxes.
The switches to control the overhead light and ceiling fan in the bedroom,
and the light and exhaust fan in the bathroom will be in these boxes.
The stud needed to be cut out to allow them to fit in a narrow wall.
The north wall will have three outlets. Drilling for wires to run between
the boxes was challenging through multiple tightly spaced  studs.
No contractor is scheduled to be at 3283 tomorrow. I'm going to use the day to handle some banking, hopefully talk with roofing and HVAC contractor candidates, check on the scheduled delivery of the windows for the addition, and seek advice on painting.  But, most importantly, I want to try to finalize selection and scheduling of someone to build the retaining walls.  None of these activities will generate my typically amazingly demonstrative photographs. But, I'll give an update if there is more to report that me sleeping in late.

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