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Old 03-29-2007, 06:54 PM   #1
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Default Ungrounded Romex, thermoplastic.

It's pretty common to run across old braided jacket NM cable without a ground. It's very rare, in my experience, to run across NM cable with a thermoplastic jacket that doesn't have a ground wire of any sort. Often, you'll find the plastic jacketed NM cable with a reduced size ground. Very seldom do you run across plastic jacketed Romex without a ground, but I did today. Just a piece of paper interleaving, tightly wound, where the ground would normally be. No ground inside that brown paper at all... just a twisted rope of paper. I saved a big piece, and took some pictures and scanned in the jacket labeling. I wonder what years this stuff was used? I would have to think that it was just a very few years.





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Old 03-29-2007, 07:01 PM   #2
 
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There's tons of it here. The houses were built sometime in the 60's.

I know you could still buy it in '68.
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Old 03-29-2007, 07:18 PM   #3
 
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Just happened to think,you could still buy 14-3 Romex without a ground, up into the late 80's.
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Old 03-29-2007, 07:56 PM   #4
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I have seen a lot of 14-2 with a #16 ground. Never seen 14-2 or 12-2 theromoplastic without a ground.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:32 PM   #5
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I have seen a lot of 14-2 with a #16 ground. Never seen 14-2 or 12-2 theromoplastic without a ground.
Me neither
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:40 PM   #6
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Me neither
I almost never see it, which is why I thought I'd better snatch this sample. It was a kitchen remodel, and most of the existing wiring was either K&T or braided romex. All that got torn out, and I was planning on re-routing this one run of plastic jacket NM to the new frige location when I noticed it didn't happen to have a ground. Darn. Tore out maybe 25' of it. I'll probably save it for a conversation piece.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:43 PM   #7
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I thought that by the time we were using the thermoplastic jackets, we were using a "full size" EGC. I see the reduced size EGC with the braided jacket, so I figured that the plastic would at least have that.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:45 PM   #8
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I thought that by the time we were using the thermoplastic jackets, we were using a "full size" EGC. I see the reduced size EGC with the braided jacket, so I figured that the plastic would at least have that.
Yeah, I see plenty of the plastic jacket with reduced size. Sometimes, that reduced ground even has green insulation, sorta like MC. The green and black plastic jacketed 12/2 and 14/2 mostly always had reduced ground. There's really some weird stuff out there. Have you ever run into armored SE cable? That crap is a real "treat" to work with. (braided jacket, tar, spiral metal armor, lots of paper and string, and then the conductors each wound in cardboard curly-que stuff)

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Old 03-29-2007, 09:58 PM   #9
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Never seen armored SE cable, thank God. I wonder if that wire you found today was a factory screw-up?
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Old 03-29-2007, 10:07 PM   #10
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I wonder if that wire you found today was a factory screw-up?
No, I've seen it a few times before. A very few times, which is why I took pictures this time. Hillbilly says he's seen a lot of it down his way, so maybe it was more regional? Might have to do with what codes were enforced when and in what area. Hard to say.

I'll have to save a piece of armored SE next time I get some, and take some pictures. I might even have some in one of the scrap barrells right now. Might have to check, if it crosses my mind. It's sort of a pain to dig through scrap wire barrells. You end up with it one huge interconnected mass that weighs a zillion pounds.
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Old 03-29-2007, 10:53 PM   #11
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There's tons of it here. The houses were built sometime in the 60's.

I know you could still buy it in '68.
Yeah it's all over here in East TN also. Kind of normal to see it in the area.
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Old 03-29-2007, 10:56 PM   #12
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Yeah it's all over here in East TN also. Kind of normal to see it in the area.
When you were in DE, did you see it as much (or ever) like you see it in TN? It's looking like it was a Confederate wiring method.
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Old 03-29-2007, 11:22 PM   #13
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I never seen any of it in DE. I only seen K&T one time up there. They just tear the old houses down and put new ones in their place. I did however get to see some crazy things in PA,MD, and NJ during my work time there.
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Old 03-30-2007, 12:21 AM   #14
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Did a job LONG TIME AGO, outside lights had BXL, the individual conducors were lead covered with a BX (armor) jacket.
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Old 03-30-2007, 08:42 PM   #15
 
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When you were in DE, did you see it as much (or ever) like you see it in TN? It's looking like it was a Confederate wiring method.
Yeah,we were forced to use it for many years following the War of Northern Aggression!
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Old 03-31-2007, 12:25 AM   #16
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I've run into this in some remodels, but not often. The one that I've only seen once was jacketed in lead.
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Old 03-31-2007, 12:33 AM   #17
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I cut out a bunch of it today at a remodel/ addition I am doing. This type also has a solid plastic thread running inside between the black and white conductors, sort of like a strength adder. But no equipment ground (bonding) conductor.
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Old 04-07-2007, 09:15 PM   #18
 
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Last week a contractor brought in a piece of 14/3 about 25 feet long. It is new NM cable without an equipment ground conductor... I was thinking it is a manufacturering mistake...I kept it for the classroom display
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Old 04-09-2007, 10:04 PM   #19
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It's a common cable still sold today, here is a link just look at all the cables with WOG. http://www.electricalreference.com/N...NUM-50-51.html

Used for signal circuits, LV projects, and many other circuit applications not requiring a ground.
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Old 04-09-2007, 10:11 PM   #20
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It's a common cable still sold today,.

It might exist, but I certainly wouldn't call it common.

Well, maybe if you do the type of work that utilizes it. I can see it being helpful for a certain model of undercabinet LV puck light that I use that needs NM cable, but doesn't need the ground.
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