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#214687 - 01/10/15 10:30 PM Line Connecting Taps  
harold endean  Offline
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 2,233
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?

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

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

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,135
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.

Greg Fretwell

#214689 - 01/11/15 07:30 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: gfretwell]  
sparkyinak  Offline
Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,328
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

#214690 - 01/11/15 08:37 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
HotLine1  Offline

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,874
Brick, NJ USA
Although I have not seen 'directions', they must be supplied by the mfg.

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


#214691 - 01/11/15 08:47 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
HotLine1  Offline

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,874
Brick, NJ USA

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??


#214692 - 01/12/15 03:54 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
harold endean  Offline
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 2,233
Boonton, NJ

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.

#214693 - 01/12/15 06:15 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
renosteinke  Offline
Cat Servant
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
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.

#214694 - 01/12/15 09:40 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
HotLine1  Offline

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,874
Brick, NJ USA

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.


#214695 - 01/12/15 09:45 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
HotLine1  Offline

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 6,874
Brick, NJ USA

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.


#214697 - 01/12/15 11:09 PM Re: Line Connecting Taps [Re: harold endean]  
harold endean  Offline
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 2,233
Boonton, NJ

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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