This is a picture of the switchboard & meter panel that was recently removed from my sisters house in Adelaide, South Australia. It was installed in the mid-1950s'. This board was mounted in the laundry at the rear of the property.
The meter on the left was used for measuring the power used for the house (rated 10-40 amps) & the meter on the right is for the hot water service (5-20 amps).
I have no idea where the cable on the left goes to, it's a length of 2.5 mm2 TPS cable for a power circuit of some description.
Under the left meter is the main switch, two fuses (the one on left is power-15 amps & the right one is lights -10 amps). The little box is for the neutral link.
The fuse in the centre along with the round switch underneath is for the hot water service.
On the end is a switch which controls the 10 amp power outlet below it.
The whole assembly has been removed & replaced with a 17 position DIN rail switchboard with RCD protection at the front of the property with the meters.
Now there's the sort of Switch-board/Metering panel that I'm used to seeing. Thanks for submitting the picture, Darren!. Installing a switchboard in the Laundry is something that you don't see a lot of down in this part of the world these days. Interesting to note that while the board has Porcelain Rewireable fuses on it, there is a plug-in type MCB sitting on the ledge in front of the board. Bit of a rough job on installing that 2.5, it's not even covered with capping.
Re: 1950s Australian Meters & Switchboard#152360 10/08/0401:32 AM10/08/0401:32 AM
It must of been fairly common place ecspecially in Adelaide as a few other houses I have been to have the switchboard in the laundry. As for the piece of 2.5, that has all been removed along with all the equipment in the photo. I have since found out that this cable run to a double power outlet that was screwed onto the wall just out of the picture. Even a piece of flexible conduit would of been a good idea on this cable to prevent mechanical damage.
Re: 1950s Australian Meters & Switchboard#152361 10/13/0405:05 AM10/13/0405:05 AM
It sort of makes me wonder how you work on a board that is installed like this. I'm assuming that it has hinges on the right-hand side of the Phenolic panel. But with that meter in the way, I doubt you'd be able to open the panel very far.
Re: 1950s Australian Meters & Switchboard#152363 10/16/0403:13 AM10/16/0403:13 AM
The panel was secured by two screws (one either side of the lower part of the board). Some of these boards were made from a material called 'Zelemite' which was a fire retardant, asbestos based product. No idea if it was used outside of Australia.
Re: 1950s Australian Meters & Switchboard#152364 11/25/0408:48 AM11/25/0408:48 AM
Yes Darren, We had Zelemite here for years, in fact I've heard that at one time it was actually manufactured here. When I first started my time as a sparkie, we were warned not to breathe in the dust while drilling it for fuses and meters and the like.