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#23654 - 03/23/03 09:35 PM removing Zinsco breakers
amp-man Offline

Registered: 06/23/01
Posts: 144
Loc: Sacto, California US of A
Hey y'all,

Anyone have any tips on removing Zinsco breakers form vertical-bus panels? Recently I had to swap out a breaker in a subpanel which was full. The breaker clip of the one I was taking out was in good condition (not corroded or welded to busbar). Even after prying back the retaining bar on the terminal side, I had to pry out the old breaker (and I broke it in the process.)

On the horizontal bus panels, it's easy to get the breakers out, once you move the retainer bar up out of the way. But the vertical bus panels aren't set up this way. So, what method do you use? Yea, and don't tell me to just replace the panel.

One thing I noticed once when stripping the breakers out of an old Zinsco, the entire hot bus assembly can be removed from the panel--just popped out. Now I think I know how those old panels were made up--the cables brought in and dressed, neutrals & grounds terminated, then the "guts" put in, feeders landed, and the breakers clipped in. Pretty slick, really.


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#23655 - 03/25/03 12:46 PM Re: removing Zinsco breakers
kale Offline

Registered: 11/08/02
Posts: 168

#23656 - 03/25/03 03:04 PM Re: removing Zinsco breakers
Scott35 Offline

Broom Pusher and

Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 2724
Loc: Anaheim, CA. USA
Dynamite also works well in removing these Breakers, and also eliminates the problems of fried bus kits in Panelboards for QFP frames.

Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!

#23657 - 03/25/03 10:40 PM Re: removing Zinsco breakers
amp-man Offline

Registered: 06/23/01
Posts: 144
Loc: Sacto, California US of A
Thanks guys!

A stick of 40%, yea, I like that.

Or maybe some thermite? If it works for cutting main line rail...


#23658 - 03/26/03 11:26 AM Re: removing Zinsco breakers
Bjarney Offline

Registered: 04/10/02
Posts: 2561
Loc: West-Southern Inner-Northeast ...
Should greater precision be needed, there's always Trainwire's famous thermally enhanced approach... ;-)

[This message has been edited by Bjarney (edited 03-26-2003).]

#23659 - 03/30/03 03:20 PM Re: removing Zinsco breakers
wocolt Offline

Registered: 12/06/02
Posts: 117
Ahhh Zinsco, and its brother in crime FPE. I think the term selective Demolition is appropriate here.
Like maybe a 1/4 # of C-4 would do the job nicely OR use the torch as suggested in the picture.


#23660 - 03/30/03 06:48 PM Re: removing Zinsco breakers
mamills Offline

Registered: 11/30/01
Posts: 739
Loc: Wharton, Texas, USA
That picture of Bjarney's/Trainwire's kinda reminds me of an old Zinsco at a fire call one time, burning it's way into the horror of the homeowner. It really looked very much like that torch!

Homeowner has a nice new SqD QO now...

Mike (Mamills)


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