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#214687 - 01/10/15 07:30 PM Line Connecting Taps
harold endean Offline
Member

Registered: 02/16/02
Posts: 2248
Loc: Boonton, NJ
I have a few question about those taps that allow you to connect to a feeder and tap off of it, (i.e. Kup-L-Tap):
Does the feeder have to be straight?
Can you get a good connection if the feeder is curled around and you are trying to tap to that feeder?
Is there installation instructions for these types of taps?

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#214688 - 01/11/15 10:19 AM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I played with a Kup-L-Tap a while ago and it looks like it would straighten out the conductor enough to work in that little piece it hooks to when you tighten it up.
This is an insulation piercing deal and I always questioned just how well they work under a high load.
It does look like it was designed to steal power tho. If I was tapping something I could turn off, I would use a more conventional tapping method.
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Greg Fretwell

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#214689 - 01/11/15 04:30 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: gfretwell]
sparkyinak Online   content
Member

Registered: 07/08/07
Posts: 1286
Loc: Alaska
I've came across theses before. My first instinct with them is the sharp teeth on them that cut into the copper strands. Just don't sit right with me. They my be listed but don't seem right to me.
_________________________
"Live Awesome!" - Kevin Carosa

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#214690 - 01/11/15 05:37 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Harold:
Although I have not seen 'directions', they must be supplied by the mfg.

Kup-L-tap has been around for quite some time.
_________________________
John

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#214691 - 01/11/15 05:47 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Harold:

These are the 'instructions':

• Installs faster than any other cable tap
• Body is tough, resilient glass-filled nylon
• Factory-installed silicone lubricating compound fills voids, keeping contamination out
• Bolts and top and bottom plates are fully insulated from the conductor and contact teeth by molded nylon sleeves
• Extra hard tin-coated copper contact teeth easily penetrate most types of insulation – no cable stripping required
• Dual-rated for copper and aluminum conductors
• Can be installed on energized conductor
• Requires no cover or tape
• Runs cooler than the conductor
• Bolt tightens with just a wrench
• A horizontal line grid provides a visual guide for proper installation of conductors
Installation Instructions
1. Loosen connector bolt(s) and separate halves.
2. Mount the main cable in the main groove of the connector by placing the connector halves over the cable.
3. Insert the squared-off tap cable into the tap groove until it contacts the end tab. Tighten the bolt(s) until securely fastened.
4. Completed installation.

Note the 'horizontal line grid'

All the graphics show straight conductors.

Are you referring to a 'line tap' made in a resi panel for a solar grid tie? The line conductors being 'curved' into the MLO or MCB??
_________________________
John

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#214692 - 01/12/15 12:54 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
harold endean Offline
Member

Registered: 02/16/02
Posts: 2248
Loc: Boonton, NJ
John,

Exactly what I was talking about. a resi solar job with the line tap being made inside of the panel. It is an old 20-40 panel and the service conductors do a 360 deg and land on the main breaker. The PV people clamped the Kup-l-tap onto the conductors at that point. I explained to them that it doesn't look right, but they said that they do it like that all the time. I asked for some instruction or installation paper work to back them up. I haven't seen any thing yet.

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#214693 - 01/12/15 03:15 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
Member

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5300
Loc: Blue Collar Country
What, exactly, is the problem?

Assuming the connector appears to be completely assembled, I'd say the wires are 'straight' enough.

Otherwise, we're on a quest for the Abominable No-Man, stretching ever possible excuse to find something for objection.

For example, I bet the panel maker has some manner of boilerplate that says only wires and their breakers are allowed in the box.

We've seen folks argue that applying wire nuts to twisted wires is a violation of 'listing and labeling.' We've seen folks object to fittings with matching threads being put together, because they weren't "evaluated" together. We've even seen manufacturers contradict the testing agency decisions.

All in a quest for the almighty ability to say 'no.'

We like to sneer when someone says "we've always done it that way." Take that smirk away ... how do you think it should be done -and what is your justification?

Beria told Stalin: Show me the man and I'll find the crime. It seems to me that far too many inspectors approach things the way Beria did.

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#214694 - 01/12/15 06:40 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Reno:

Harold is going where I have gone a few times.

Solar grid ties via 'line side taps' in existing 'dated' panels have some interesting methods and workmanship.

Yes, your assumption IF the connector is seated properly, it should be no issue. However, there are instances where a failure resulted from the teeth cutting the Al strands from the radius of the bend.

The 'almighty ability to say no'?? When I have to, you bet.
_________________________
John

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#214695 - 01/12/15 06:45 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Harold:

IF you have one of the smaller Kupl-taps, it may be OK.

Think this way, ask the contractor for an identical KT, look at the run teeth spacing & look at the radius of the conductors, then make your call.

Some of the solar guys leave a lot to be desired.
_________________________
John

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#214697 - 01/12/15 08:09 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]
harold endean Offline
Member

Registered: 02/16/02
Posts: 2248
Loc: Boonton, NJ
Reno,

Believe me when I say this, I am not one of those inspectors who like to look for something to fail a contractor on each job. Just the opposite. I want that EC to pass each job, for one thing, I have to go back if I fail him. I don't need to justify my job, I just want the job to be safe. I didn't like it when the AHJ came on my job and tell me how to do it. I also will talk with any EC (If he fails) about easy ways to correct the mistake. Most times it is just an easy mistake, like they missed a receptacle on a wall ( new construction) that was required by code. I also will let him continue the job and it will be there on the final inspection. I have know which EC's I trust with that task.

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