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Discuss The big difference in the electric terminology and installation regulations and practice in each country! in the Industrial Electrician Talk area at ElectriciansForums.net

Megawatt

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Arms
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I’m from the US and I’m just trying to learn how UK does things and the terminology of what I call something verses what y’all call materials. I read some of this and I mostly don’t know what being said and I’ve been doing this for 32 years
 
S

Silly Sausage

We don't use Fire nu... sorry, I mean Wire nuts over here for starters.
 
Put up a list of your terminology and members will see if they can give interpretations.
 

Megawatt

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  • #6
Do y’all run conduit or approved cables
what would a service look like on a single family dwelling
 

telectrix

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in domestics, we generally use twin& earth cable. :
1564858602713.png
hot wire we call line(brown) . neutral (Blue), and what you would call the ground wire, we call it "circuit protective conductor (cpc). OH, and due to some silly farts back in the 1970's all our cable is metric.

that's a start
 

James

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Not to confuse matters, we often call the cpc or ground wire an earth wire.
Not that this is the correct technical term
Just a throwback from the past.
 

Lucien Nunes

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Why not grab yourself an old copy of our equivalent of the NEC (BS7671, aka the 'wiring regs'.) It would take a long time to run through each difference but you could get most of the story even though the book isn't fully up to date.

One of the main differences is that BS7671 is less prescriptive than the NEC. There's less talk of how many wires you may join in a particular size of box, and more emphasis on calculating and evaluating the characteristics of each cable and material and assessing the suitability for yourself. We're also much more into testing. Not only volt drop and ampacity but earth fault and short-circuit loop impedances and their corresponding fault currents are all assessed for every circuit before installation, and then tested afterwards and compared to the curves of the breakers to ensure they will operate correctly, before a circuit is considered ready for use.

Some important supply differences:

Our supplies are 50 Hz (=cycles), so induction motors run at approximately 1000, 1500, 3000 rpm instead of 1200, 1800, 3600.

Domestic services are 230V single phase, typically 100A. Line (=hot) and neutral are provided by the network, sometimes earth too, otherwise a rod is used. Only the network operator is allowed to combine (=bond) neutral and earth, they may not be linked in the distribution board (=panel). Split phase (as in typical US services with two lines each 120V to neutral and 240V between them) is never used, although a very few old rural installations where the high voltage supply is only single-phase have 240-0-240 with 480V between lines.

Industrial and commercial services are normally 3-phase 4-wire star (=wye) 400V line-line, 230V line-neutral, from the same distribution cables as the domestic single-phase but with all three phases present instead of just one. There are no open delta, edge grounded or high-leg asymmetrical configurations. An increasing number of larger industrial loads are 690/400V.

More later on materials and circuits...
 

Megawatt

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Arms
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #10
Why not grab yourself an old copy of our equivalent of the NEC (BS7671, aka the 'wiring regs'.) It would take a long time to run through each difference but you could get most of the story even though the book isn't fully up to date.

One of the main differences is that BS7671 is less prescriptive than the NEC. There's less talk of how many wires you may join in a particular size of box, and more emphasis on calculating and evaluating the characteristics of each cable and material and assessing the suitability for yourself. We're also much more into testing. Not only volt drop and ampacity but earth fault and short-circuit loop impedances and their corresponding fault currents are all assessed for every circuit before installation, and then tested afterwards and compared to the curves of the breakers to ensure they will operate correctly, before a circuit is considered ready for use.

Some important supply differences:

Our supplies are 50 Hz (=cycles), so induction motors run at approximately 1000, 1500, 3000 rpm instead of 1200, 1800, 3600.

Domestic services are 230V single phase, typically 100A. Line (=hot) and neutral are provided by the network, sometimes earth too, otherwise a rod is used. Only the network operator is allowed to combine (=bond) neutral and earth, they may not be linked in the distribution board (=panel). Split phase (as in typical US services with two lines each 120V to neutral and 240V between them) is never used, although a very few old rural installations where the high voltage supply is only single-phase have 240-0-240 with 480V between lines.

Industrial and commercial services are normally 3-phase 4-wire star (=wye) 400V line-line, 230V line-neutral, from the same distribution cables as the domestic single-phase but with all three phases present instead of just one. There are no open delta, edge grounded or high-leg asymmetrical configurations. An increasing number of larger industrial loads are 690/400V.

More later on materials and circuits...
Very good information and I’ve wired quite a few European equipment and yes all the wire was in millimeters with European drawings which uses different symbols. I was wiring a machine for a man from Finland and he couldn’t understand that if we could we had to run it in pipe. He was a cool guy just trouble with communication
 

Megawatt

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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #11
Very good information and I’ve wired quite a few European equipment and yes all the wire was in millimeters with European drawings which uses different symbols. I was wiring a machine for a man from Finland and he couldn’t understand that if we could we had to run it in pipe. He was a cool guy just trouble with communication
Do y’all have to draw permits and when you are finished get it inspected
 

Megawatt

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  • #12
On single family dwellings it’s 240vac single phases with 2 hots and a grounded conductor-and we, not the power company drive 2 rods at the service 6 feet apart and bond the neutral bar in the main panel and bond the water lines if there is galvanized piping When you have to bury wire it has to be 24 inches to the top of the pipe
 

Megawatt

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  • #13
On single family dwellings it’s 240vac single phases with 2 hots and a grounded conductor-and we, not the power company drive 2 rods at the service 6 feet apart and bond the neutral bar in the main panel and bond the water lines if there is galvanized piping When you have to bury wire it has to be 24 inches to the top of the pipe
The manufacturing plants are mostly 480 vac delta ungrounded systems. That makes you have to lnstall a lot of transformers to get you 208/120 on the secondary side of the transformers. We do have plants that have 480 vac 3 phase star connections also
 
What do spured fuses mean
The correct terminology is fuse connection unit which are often called spurs as they are often used for spurring from a ring final circuit. It is essentially a double-pole switch which incorporates a fuse, up to 13A to protect the load side circuit.
 

Lucien Nunes

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A fused spur is a lower-rated branch circuit made from a higher-rated circuit, via a local fuse to protect the branch. This is done using a standard device called a fused connection unit, example here: BG fused connection unit . It often includes a double-pole switch to provide isolation if needed, and/or a power indicator, but it must contain a BS1362 cartridge fuse, the same type as used in our fused plugs. Most common fuses are 3 & 13A (also available 1, 2, 5, 7 & 10A).

For example, If you want a small supply for an outside light and there is a 32A circuit for socket outlets nearby, then you can install a fused connection unit with a 3A fuse to make a branch circuit for the light, instead of running a new lighting circuit all the way back to the panel. A fused connection unit can also used to connect a permanently installed appliance such as duct fan, instead of a plug and socket outlet. to stop people unplugging it to use the outlet. Here it's not technically a 'spur' but we have a habit of calling the fused connection unit itself a spur, or spur box.

Fused connection units were invented alongside fused plugs and the scheme of using socket outlet circuits of much higher rating than the plugs themselves. 32A circuits are popular, offering 7.4 kilowatts per circuit (compared to the 2.4kW of a 20A 120V outlet circuit), so a large number of typical appliances can be powered from one circuit. This is only possible due to the presence of fuses.
 

FatAlan

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Trainee
Do y’all have to draw permits and when you are finished get it inspected
This question probably hasn’t been answered yet as it’s a contentious and complicated subject. In short experienced and competent sparks are expected to test and certify their own installations. Certain domestic work has to be notified to to the local authority.
How much do you have to pay to draw a permit? Presumably that covers the cost of a third party inspection?
 

Megawatt

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  • #18
This question probably hasn’t been answered yet as it’s a contentious and complicated subject. In short experienced and competent sparks are expected to test and certify their own installations. Certain domestic work has to be notified to to the local authority.
How much do you have to pay to draw a permit? Presumably that covers the cost of a third party inspection?
Depending on what you are getting a permit for it cost around $100.00. I worked out of town in another state and they charged by the amp which at that time we was working on a 4000 amp switch gear which I had to pay and it’s was around $ 650.00 US dollars and they would not take nothing but cash. Every state . County, and inspectors are different and have their rules
 

Megawatt

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  • #19
Depending on what you are getting a permit for it cost around $100.00. I worked out of town in another state and they charged by the amp which at that time we was working on a 4000 amp switch gear which I had to pay and it’s was around $ 650.00 US dollars and they would not take nothing but cash. Every state . County, and inspectors are different and have their rules
Yes fatalan I do add that price to the customer
 

Zdb

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This is a "switched fused spur":
P-FS13DP-13A-Switched-Fused-Connection-Unit--e1526024434893.jpg
 

Megawatt

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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #24
This is a "switched fused spur":
View attachment 51111
This is a "switched fused spur":
View attachment 51111
is that a fuse beside a switch. Remember I’m in the US and trying to learn y’alls way of doing things
 

Lucien Nunes

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Do y’all not have panels with all your overcurrent and short circuit and run your wires the the devices
Yes, but as I explained in post #16, the FCU is a handy way of locally creating a small circuit from a large one, bearing in mind that our outlet circuits are often protected at 32A in the DB (panel).
 

Megawatt

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  • #27
we do. we call them Distribution Boards. domestics are commonly referred to as Consumer Units.
Thanks for the knowledge and help
 

davesparks

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We use breakers as our overcurrent protection not fuses
We use whatever is best suited to the application.
Generally MCB's (miniature circuit breakers) for small final circuits and MCCBs (moulded case circuit breakers) or fuses for distribution circuits or large final circuits.
Installing two mcbs in series can have discrimination issues, so generally we don't use mcbs for distribution circuits.

The choice of protective device, whether its fuse or circuit breaker will depend on things such as the type of load, the prospective fault current, discrimination.
 

pirate

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Now, now Andy78, that's a tad pedantic of you! LOL!
Plus, you ended your sentence with an unnecessary preposition. If we are trying to assist our American friend with the correct terminology for our superior electrical items, we should be careful not to let him think our grammar is inferior...
 
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