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Re: ground question here...
Hi all...did some more checking, and it isn't looking too awful
I yanked the panel (unscrewed and removed) off the mains box
carefully, and checked what had been done. Keep in mind this house
is late60's early 70's. braded coverings on all the romex, except
for the newer AC stuff, and what the "genius" put in it seems. At
this juncture, it seems to be much safer (and probably less costly)
to run myself a big thick 3 conductor (120, 120 & neutral) to the
garage, and sink a ground rod for myself. Problems...It'll end up
being a good 50-60' of cable once it's routed carefully and
suspended from plastic looms (this isn't a cable I'd want just
"lying" on the rest of the rats nest of wiring up there. Put a
100A+ breaker in the box, and a subpanel in the garage. That ought
to give me enough 120v service, and let me run my 240v properly for
a welder, pole pig, etc. So long as I want to run a high-amperage
240v device, I'll just kick off the 120v breakers (reduce chances
of RF spike back into the bench workstation too). It's a lot of
work, and promises to be a royal pain in the butt, but I feel this
is the best solution (and best way to get a solid-know-it'll-work
100A 240v drop).
Sounds much better than using the iffy "genius" (not an
electrician) 240v lines.