Michael Fremer's home power-system story

amadeus

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Both an entertaining and useful youtube.
:D





Can somebody define the thick grounding cables connected to the Grounding rods type/brand/thickness i am working on my plan for new dedicated grounding whit multiple rods in the ground whit ground cables star connected... and i am still searching the right/best grounding cable to use???
 

allvinyl

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Apr 10, 2013
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Separating this out so it's not a direct reply that looks like it's targeting the poster,...."those guys must be a fortune"

Truth is, I don't know but frankly it's a natural assumption. I think the best course would be to ask and get facts if someone
were interested.

As I have recently had home power work done I would like to contribute my personal experience (new panel, new mast/box outdoors, new line from the pole to the house by the utility company, complete new ground system).

I had been reading other WBF threads and as a result engaged in a private email exchange with Rex. Our discussions led me to sending him pictures and detailed text about my home power room by room. He liked some of what he saw but had suggestions on how I can best isolate my audio power lines, provided a plan for new dedicated lines for audio, and a plan for reorganizing the location and routing of the grounding inside the panel and relocating the lines/breakers inside the panel for best audio performance. At one point he sent me a meter that I used to send him measurements on the ground system at various locations in the home. I now have a step by step plan I will execute as time and money permit. He did charge me for his services but those charges were very reasonable and I would not hesitate to consult with Rex further.

As I execute against the overall plan I am going to provide updates to WBF, perhaps in a separate thread.

Also, if any member is contemplating updating/upgrading their power I highly recommend Rex as a resource for analysis and planning the changes.
 

Kingrex

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Most utilities offer or allow a over head to be fed underground
The overhead is almost always alum
The pics show about 60 to 80 feet
The gauge is typical 6 gauge pretty crappy over all. If converted to underground it’s copper and much larger in size
most utilities give you the wire.
you install all underground piping from meter to pole and 15 feet up on pole
doing so greatly lowers transient voltage changes.
just saying and Rex work looks outstanding
Thanks. And yes, under ground can be an excellent install. But you do have to run all the pipe. And going under a street is probably very expensive. I have never done it. I was rough order of magnitude told $20k for permits and work when I was building my home and asked to have the site sewer lowered 12 inches which would have made the installer cut into the city sidewalk. That was just a sidewalk.

Per the wire, nothing is for free. If they hand you the wire, its because it's what they approve, and they will bill you for it.

You do have to be conscious how you attach to the utility. Residential distribution panels are generally 10AIC. What AIC is is Amp Interrupting Capacity. If there is a bolted fault, how much energy can your panel handle before the main circuit breaker explodes and bus bar flys around your room. This is a function of the size of the transformer feeding the panel, how far the panel is from the transformer and the wire gauge. If you went underground with oversized copper, you may need a much more robust panel. Probably 22 to 35 AIC. And the individual CB may need to be as such if they don't series rate to the main breaker.
 

K3RMIT

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Sep 4, 2020
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Paying for the underground wire is not always
the interrupting rating for the panel is min 10k and standard on all residential homes I ever did.
if the work is new and utility allows for underground
it’s free
if the service is an upgrade it can also be free
but the trench and pvc conduit is not
any exposed conduit must be Galvonized
given the work Rex did still must be a big improvement over all.
 
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Tango

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Next week my electrician will make me a separate line running electricity direct from pole to my room. Also will have a separate grounding. My system is in my office building with almost a hundred computers joining office electricity line. I hope the sound of my system doesn't improve so much to the extent passing Leif's, Gian's, MikeL's, ddk's, etc. otherwise there is nothing else left to do and gets boring. :D
 

bonzo75

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Feb 26, 2014
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Next week my electrician will make me a separate line running electricity direct from pole to my room. :D

In Bangkok, I am sure there is a lot of charge near the poles
 
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PeterA

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Dec 7, 2011
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Next week my electrician will make me a separate line running electricity direct from pole to my room. Also will have a separate grounding. My system is in my office building with almost a hundred computers joining office electricity line. I hope the sound of my system doesn't improve so much to the extent passing Leif's, Gian's, MikeL's, ddk's, etc. otherwise there is nothing else left to do and gets boring. :D

Tang, this post makes me think of that wonderful Greek audiophile society video where the guy says “power is everything“.

The only way the rest of us will know if there’s an improvement is by you posting a video of the before and after. If it is monumental, you will not need your new speakers, so you can then send them to me for my office system. Seriously, this is pretty cool. Let us know if you hear an improvement.
 
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spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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Next week my electrician will make me a separate line running electricity direct from pole to my room. Also will have a separate grounding. My system is in my office building with almost a hundred computers joining office electricity line. I hope the sound of my system doesn't improve so much to the extent passing Leif's, Gian's, MikeL's, ddk's, etc. otherwise there is nothing else left to do and gets boring. :D
I'm really disappointed that the usual crew haven't started talking about pole dancing.
 

Kingrex

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Next week my electrician will make me a separate line running electricity direct from pole to my room. Also will have a separate grounding. My system is in my office building with almost a hundred computers joining office electricity line. I hope the sound of my system doesn't improve so much to the extent passing Leif's, Gian's, MikeL's, ddk's, etc. otherwise there is nothing else left to do and gets boring. :D
Separate lines always helps. A dedicated transformer is even better. You may want a k13 tripple insulated isolation transformer if hundreds of computers are on the utility transformer.

Think long and hard about your ground. Most every electrician forgets some of the most basic code and more important, electron theory when it comes to grounding. I don't even know its legal to strike a building with a second service and not have that second service be solidly bonded to the buildings grounding electrode system. If your not and you have any sort of metal to metal contact with any building steel,, you may have unwanted voltage instability and noise.

And what if your ground is anywhere near the building ground. There are code rules pertaining to that. Those codes are based upon electron theory.

And what happens if lightning strikes and its looking at multiple paths to earth, or from earth to the utility.

I know the images are not exactly what your doing, but its my understanding all the services on a building are part of a grounding electrode system.

Rex
 

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Tango

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And what if your ground is anywhere near the building ground.
Thank you very much for your warning. What is the distance of anywhere near the building ground you are talking about. How far apart they should be?

kind regards,
Tang
 

Kingrex

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You have to think hard about grounding and what's it going to do. Even the professional companies I work with that only do grounding have horror stories to tell.

Lets just assume your contractor puts a great ground rod in the earth. Pots it in clay. Then bonds it to your panel. It is the best ground on the premises. Where is the noise in the building going to head? How is it getting where its going? What noise wants to go where? What about lightning hitting the ground or the power lines. Where is it going and what route will it take?

The NEC was founded and is updated by pretty brilliant minds. I would not second guessing it when it comes to grounding. I would look at the building ground and assess how best to utilize it. Thats what those pictures show.

And what about the 6 disconnect rule and grouping of service disconnects. The fire department, at least in the USA, requires 1 central location to throw all electrical disconnect handles to OFF so they can safely spray water on a burning building. That puts your service down in the main electrical room. That room probably has building steel tied to a concrete encased electrode buried in a piling or footer. And maybe a 2" copper cold water pipe. Who knows, maybe the building is old and they went cheap with a rod in the earth. We don't know until we investigate. On one job I found the plumbers had done some work and removed the main building ground from their cold water pipe. It was just pushed up in the ceiling out of the way or their work. And now you put a good ground in the earth from your panel. What just happened at that site?

This is what I do all day. I think about this stuff. It's what my business is. I assess every job individually and know what questions to ask. I know what I am looking for. Where the critical junctures to validate are. I know how to wire a home or business for audio playback. If you want a second set of eyes on this project, PM me.
 

amadeus

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Jan 13, 2018
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You have to think hard about grounding and what's it going to do. Even the professional companies I work with that only do grounding have horror stories to tell.

Lets just assume your contractor puts a great ground rod in the earth. Pots it in clay. Then bonds it to your panel. It is the best ground on the premises. Where is the noise in the building going to head? How is it getting where its going? What noise wants to go where? What about lightning hitting the ground or the power lines. Where is it going and what route will it take?

The NEC was founded and is updated by pretty brilliant minds. I would not second guessing it when it comes to grounding. I would look at the building ground and assess how best to utilize it. Thats what those pictures show.

And what about the 6 disconnect rule and grouping of service disconnects. The fire department, at least in the USA, requires 1 central location to throw all electrical disconnect handles to OFF so they can safely spray water on a burning building. That puts your service down in the main electrical room. That room probably has building steel tied to a concrete encased electrode buried in a piling or footer. And maybe a 2" copper cold water pipe. Who knows, maybe the building is old and they went cheap with a rod in the earth. We don't know until we investigate. On one job I found the plumbers had done some work and removed the main building ground from their cold water pipe. It was just pushed up in the ceiling out of the way or their work. And now you put a good ground in the earth from your panel. What just happened at that site?

This is what I do all day. I think about this stuff. It's what my business is. I assess every job individually and know what questions to ask. I know what I am looking for. Where the critical junctures to validate are. I know how to wire a home or business for audio playback. If you want a second set of eyes on this project, PM me.


Very instructive explanation Kingrex i am almost going to make a dedicated grounding i will post the drawing how we gonna do it would be glad if you take a look at it and make your comments....

Thanks in advance!
 

MarkusBarkus

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Feb 7, 2021
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@Kingrex as always, great posts on grounding. Thank you.

I am going to tidy-up my existing ground assembly to the water pipe. Loosen clamp, clean pipe and cable as much as possible, since it's been in place since 1988.

Do you recommend any anti-oxidizing compound be applied as part of this maintenance? I have used it previously in applications with different metals...but in all- copper assemblies? Thanks!
 
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gleeds

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May 29, 2018
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A quick shout out to Ed at Audio Ultra. I opened my new showroom in Newport Beach several months ago and Ed gave freely of his time and knowledge about everything on all matters AC. Super guy and very easy to talk to!

Since my showroom is currently in a rented home in Newport I elected not to do Ed's full system until we are able to do a longer-term lease. That said, I did install dedicated lines using 10-gauge solid-core copper and ran the same cabling from the existing ground rod directly to the panel with excellent results.

Ultra Audio (aka Ed) makes an indoor version of his outdoor panel that I believe performs exactly the same as the outdoor one used at Fremer's place, except it, has I believe 10 AC inlets for all your gear. This, of course, is a great option for any Members who have adequate room (it's a beast) and may have a move somewhere in their future. IMO, an investment in Ed and Rex's approach to clean AC will yield among the finest system improvements you can make regardless of dollars spent.

What is it they say: "great houses are built on a solid foundation".
 

SCAudiophile

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@Kingrex Thank you for the great posts above regarding grounding and all the complexities...fantastic material and wisdom.
 

Tango

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Kingrex and Fremer are kiddy play. This is how beyond the Thais go in their electrical panel. The sound is fuller and definitely richer than in the US. ;)

8F3A978E-AB40-45BF-9032-AAE34B8C6704.jpeg
74FE1BF8-E644-4193-850C-5FB60D2456DB.jpeg
 
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andromedaaudio

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Kingrex and Fremer are kiddy play. This is how beyond the Thais go in their electrical panel. The sound is fuller and definitely richer than in the US. ;)

View attachment 95953
View attachment 95954


Looks more like thai tax evasion to me lol.
Who s gonna look in the metercloset.

Is this seriously done to get " better " sound ?
 
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Mike Lavigne

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Apr 25, 2010
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Kingrex and Fremer are kiddy play. This is how beyond the Thais go in their electrical panel. The sound is fuller and definitely richer than in the US. ;)
Tang,

is the idea 'damping'? eliminating breaker and panel resonance? it could also 'deaden' the sound too. i suppose you would 'tune' it by ear. like cable elevators or power cable clamps.
 

Tango

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Tang,

is the idea 'damping'? eliminating breaker and panel resonance? it could also 'deaden' the sound too. i suppose you would 'tune' it by ear. like cable elevators or power cable clamps.
Imo, we stick any metal to audio component or electrical path, it will effect sound somehow. It is a matter of big or small delta and whether one likes the difference or not. I was not kidding that in this case a few guys found the sound fuller and the tone is richer. Don't know the idea behind it. Yes it is all by ears Mike. I thought it was funny but they heard the difference.
 

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