I'm going to have to change out a 200 amp 3 phase 30 circuit panel out, to a 42 circuit panel Saturday, with a 2" feeder in the bottom. The new panel is 9" longer than the existing one. I have around 10 or 12 pipes in the top ( 1/2" and 3/4") and only (2) 1/2" pipes and (1) 2" feeder pipe in the bottom. I'm thinking at this point it might be simpler to cut the pipe at the bottom than at the top. I've cut 1/2" plenty of times with a small tubing cutter with the wires in it, but never had to cut 2". I've looked on the net to find a cutter and "Ridgid" makes one that will cut 2", but it has the standard long handle on it, and I need to find one that is ratcheded (if that's a word:)). Anyone know of such a thing?? Pulling the wires out at the bottom is not an option. It goes through concrete, and is fed from the main service gear 100 or so feet away. Thanks for the input.. Steve
Greg, I've never used one of those before. That might be what I need if I can find the right one. I always thought that was a plumbers tool. Just exactly how does it work? I pulled up some pictures of it. Does it have cutters all along the chain? Thanks
The chain cutter is for cast iron, and I'm not sure it will work on steel. Generally, you score the pipe then give it a sharp whack - and the pipe breaks along the line.
OP will have to slide a smaller pipe inside, around the wires, to protect them - as he hacks his way around the pipe with a saws-it-all, multi-master, or Dremel. Then he can use a burr knife to clean up the inside edges.
I found one at Sears. Says it cuts up to 1/4 wall thickness, and cuts galvanized, stainless, etc. It says it's ratcheting also. This might be what I'm looking for. $ 135.00 plus tax problem is I can't get it by the time I need it.
Reno, I want have enough room to put another conduit inside. There are at least (3) 3/0s , and the neutral (I'm not sure now what they're using). The pipe is being used as the equipment ground. I've got some "flashing" I used on another job. I might can cut me a piece, and roll it up enough to go over the wires and down into the pipe enough to protect it from the cutters once they penetrate. Looks like I'm going to have to sawzall the bottom of the old panel, just to get it out. With pipes on the top and pipes on the bottom, going to be a tight fit. The panel is not going to be used again anyway, buss bar on bottom is "pitted" real bad.
Update on panel change out. Nobody in town including rental places had what I wanted. I ordered a pipe cutter from Sears, but it's not expected in til next week which will be too late. I went back to the job to see if I had enough room to slide a 1 1/2" conduit down the 2" to protect the wires, and I think I do, so I will have to go that route unless my cutters get here tomorrow. Going to have to cut the pipes at the top also, because the "feeder wires" ( 3/0 copper ) are not long enough to reach the new main breaker, and if I just cut the bottom pipes, some of the breakers will be down at their knees:( Think I got my battle plan in order though, unless the "unexpected" arises. ... Steve