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Electrical Slang

What do a "bug" and a "cherry" have in common?

They are both electrical slang terms!

Curious about what these and other slang terms mean?

Scroll through our collection of slang terminology used in the electrical industry!

Whether you are an electrician, contractor, or just someone trying to understand what your local electrician is jabbering about, use the glossary to learn trade slang and electrical jargon.

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This is a "J" shaped grounding lug where the cable comes in from the side and just lies in the lug. The screw is tightened down and the wire is held fast. This lug can be found alone as in the GBL series or attached to a grounding bushing or some other fitting. It comes in a variety of sizes to handle different wire gauges so this part number shown is only one of several possibilities to point you in the right direction.

Lay-In Ground Lug Image



The strut used to hang acoustical tile is called Black iron. This is the "C" shaped, 1-1/2" black strut that is bolted to the concrete deck or wooden beams using CADDY® hangers to create a secure mounting point for the grid ceiling runners. When looking-up fittings for black iron, most catalogs, such as CADDY®, use the term Lathers Channel.

Lathers Channel Image



Heavy duty, stainless steel, one-piece expansion bolt that works by compressing the side sleeve against the hole made in concrete or stone. Available in sizes ranging from 1/4" x 1-3/4" all the way to 1-1/4" x 12".

Kwik Bolt Image



This electrical box is slightly larger than the standard 1900 or 4" box. Called a 5" box because of its 4-11/16" size, it is used for a wide variety of applications where heaver cables are needed or bulky wiring devices require a higher volume box. The part number shown below is only one of many configurations and you need to ask for the size of the knockout (determined by the conduit size) and if the user wants a standard (1-1/2") or a deep (2 1/8") box. This electrical box is usually called a 1900 box because that was the original part number from Bossert almost a hundred years ago. Called a 4" box because of its 4" width, it is the most common box used when a simple switchbox isn't big enough. The part number shown below is only one of many configurations and you need to ask for the size of the knockout (determined by the conduit size) and if the user wants a small (1-1/4"), a standard (1-1/2") or a deep (2 1/8") box. The user also has to specify how it will be mounted: stud ears, etc.

4 11/16" Box Image



Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter. This device interrupts power when it senses voltage leaking through the grounding system. The GFC(I) protects the human while the breaker protects the electrical system.

GFI or Gfci Image



A connector that facilitates connecting transformers, switches, sectionalizing cabinets and junctions to underground cables when there is no electrical load, (see also 'Deadbreak Elbow').

Loadbreak Elbow Image



The swivel acts like a circuit breaker to disengage the pulling rope from the wire when a certain pulling tension is exceeded. It does it by using break-away pins in the swivel that come in ratings from 200 to 1000 pounds. To change the break-away setting, you just change the pin.

Breakaway Swivel Image


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