grounding old outlet

I couldn't find any other user group, so if this is not the right one, I apologize.
I have some knob and tube wiring accessible from my basement going to
several old (2 wire) receptacles. Can I simply connect a ground(ing) wire from a near-by gas pipe to new 3 wire receptacles, or must the ground(ing) wire be connected to the ground bus of the main circuit panel box?
Thanks for any help.
David A.
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David Azose wrote:

Sure, if you like really big explosions. Otherwise, run the wire back to the breaker or fuse box, where it belongs.
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wrote:

You mean like this??

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F54rqDh2mWA&feature=related

:D
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I wrote an Article on this that might help you. It is based on the 1996 NEC, but most of it still applies. It is at: http://www.electrician2.com/articles/grndrec.htm
I do these things because my SS card is worn out and my DD214 is moldy. My mind is sane but my body is limping along. And it is below freezing for 6 months in North Pole, Alaska.
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Gerald Newton wrote:

<http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/get-service-records.html to replace that mold. ;-)

You poor baby! :) I spent a year at Ft. Greely (Delta Junction) in the '70s. I was one of the engineers at the AFRTS radio & TV stations there. The Gates BC250 AM transmitter could be heard all the way to Fairbanks, if you were within a mile of the Alaskan power grid. We we referred to as 'The worlds largest carrier current station' due to the fact that the grid was built directly over, and parallel to out center tapped dipole cut for 980 KHz.
BTW, Ft Greely was colder than fairbanks, every day that I was stationed there. I guess that's why the US Army used the base as their cold weather test site? :)
I rode 'The green weenie' through North Pole a couple times a month, just to get a pizza in Fairbanks. two weeks after I left for home, that bus went off the side of the mountain with several of my friends aboard.
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David Azose wrote:

The receptacle ground wire can be connected to anywhere on the grounding electrode system including the heavy wires from service to the grounding electrodes (grounding electrode conductors) and, if the water pipe is used as a grounding electrode, the 1st 5 ft of water pipe inside the building. Also the panel ground bar (which is usually the same as the neutral bar at the service). Don't use the gas pipe.
GFCI grounding type receptacles can be installed on K&T wiring. There will be no ground, but the GFCI will provide shock protection. Apply the "No equipment ground" label provided.
Grounding type receptacles can be installed IF downstream, and protected by, a GFCI receptacle or circuit breaker. Apply the labels supplied: "No equipment ground" and "GFCI protected".
alt.home.repair gets more US wiring questions but asking on this news group is fine.
--
bud--

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| I couldn't find any other user group, so if this is not the right one, I | apologize.
This is a good enough place for this issue.
| I have some knob and tube wiring accessible from my basement going to | several old (2 wire) receptacles. Can I simply connect a ground(ing) | wire from a near-by gas pipe to new 3 wire receptacles, or must the | ground(ing) wire be connected to the ground bus of the main circuit | panel box?
It MUST be connected to the ground bus of the main circuit panel. Since you mentioned "main" I presume either the circuits involved truly originate only at the main panel, as opposed to a sub panel, or you only have one panel.
Although the grounding wire does not normally carry electrical current, it would carry such current when there is a short circuit between a line wire inside an appliance or outlet box, and the containing grounded box. The intent is for this short circuit to briefly carry a high enough current to quickly burn out a fuse or trip a circuit breaker. What you do not want is for such a short circuit to ignite a gas explosion.
Furthermore, electricity travels in a loop (called a circuit). That's why there are two wires (or more in certain cases) carrying current in any circuit. There is also a magnetic field established between these wires. By keeping the wires close together, that magnetic field is limited in size. If the wires were spread apart too far, the magenetic field would be wider and would induce electrical currents on other metallic objects. The grounding wire needs to follow the other two wires in the circuit for this reason. That short circuit that could happen could result in a very large current and strong magnetic field for a brief instant (until the fuse or breaker opens the circuit), and that field could cause other problems in addition to impeding the fault current flow intended to blow the fuse or trip the breaker.
Also, the gas pipe itself may not have a good solid return path to the electrical source to allow the full fault current flow.
Ask yourself: Do I think it is cool to have 1000 amps of electricity flow over my gas pipe? Do I even want to live nearby anyone who does that?
With all that said, I would not add grounding to any knob and tube circuit. Either I would leave the K&T circuit untouched, or replace it entirely with an appropriate wiring job with NM, UF, or MC cables, or THHN or THWN in conduit, depending on the circumstances and local requirements.
Do note that a GFCI outlet _will_ work (it will both provide the intended protection as well as having the test button function correctly) on an ungrounded circuit. You would just need to mark the outlet as having no grounding (I might fill in the grounding pin hole with a hard resin, but I don't know if that is legal to modify it as such).
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|---------------------------------------/----------------------------------|
| Phil Howard KA9WGN (ka9wgn.ham.org) / Do not send to the address below |
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alt.home.repair is a big group which you could direct this question to. You could also try alt.construction and alt.building.construction. You already have some good answers here. I was thinking about the same thing on one of my properties with 1950 vintage K&T installation. I would just rip everything out, replace with Romax and a new panel - don't want the K&T hanging over my head for insurance reasons and easier to sell the property once this real estate crises is over in California.
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Normally, if you can fish a grounding conductor into a flush receptacle, you can also get a piece of romex in there. Why not just run some new circuitry from the box to the panel?
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|
| |>I couldn't find any other user group, so if this is not the right one, I |>apologize. |> |> I have some knob and tube wiring accessible from my basement going to |> several old (2 wire) receptacles. Can I simply connect a ground(ing) wire |> from a near-by gas pipe to new 3 wire receptacles, or must the ground(ing) |> wire be connected to the ground bus of the main circuit panel box? |> |> Thanks for any help. |> |> David A. | | Normally, if you can fish a grounding conductor into a flush receptacle, you | can also get a piece of romex in there. Why not just run some new circuitry | from the box to the panel?
The romex will cost more (more copper inside). Maybe he's trying to save money. IMHO, that is a bad way to save money, but maybe that is his motive.
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|---------------------------------------/----------------------------------|
| Phil Howard KA9WGN (ka9wgn.ham.org) / Do not send to the address below |
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