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Re: Suggestions - cabling

  • To: ukha_d@xxxxxxx
  • Subject: Re: Suggestions - cabling
  • From: Nigel Orr <nigel.orr@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 09:05:40 +0100
  • Delivered-to: listsaver-egroups-ukha_d@xxxxxxx
  • Mailing-list: contact ukha_d-owner@xxxxxxx
  • Reply-to: ukha_d@xxxxxxx

At 20:44 22/04/99 +0100, you wrote:
>Well...the time has more talking...time for action!

Does this mean you're getting rid of all that nasty X-10 stuff then ;-)

>Discovery Channel.  What I want now is some last minute hints, tips and
>various pearls of wisdom from anyone out there that has ever pulled

I've pulled _alot_ of cables, mostly in theatres and venues, but the
principle's the same...

>Anyone know of a hand tool we should have? =20

1) Have a look at the uk.d-i-y FAQ, at
There are other FAQs, but that's probably the most useful section to you.

2) Buy a set of Drain Rods- about =A320.  They are (IMHO) the single most
useful wire pulling tool.  Some sets (eg Screwfix) come with a spiral twist
thingy on the end which grabs cable very effectively...  They are flexible
enough so you can bend them round very tight corners (to get under the
floor), and have enough strength so you can push cables or pull them.  And
when you're done, you can get a chimney sweeping fitting for the end, and
make more mess than you ever thought possible...
Other similarly handy tools are a length of net curtain wire and one of the
1m long flexible 'pearl catcher' tools- about =A31-2 each.

3)'Fish Tape' might be useful, particularly if you have any conduit, or
very small holes- I find the round fibreglass one better than the flat
metal one, but it does tend to coil up and tangle if you turn your back.
In the house, I usually just use drain rods, with the pearl catcher to go
through small holes- you should be able to get it from a good electrical
supplies shop

4) Get a long masonry drill bit- I usually use 20mm dia 400mm long- if you
have any thick walls (masonry or stud partition)- it's a real nuisance
having to drill from both sides and try to meet up...

>Any suggests for an simple and
>effective way of labling the cables? =20

Number the rooms, and multiple points in the room, if any.  Then either use
masking tape and a marker pen (which usually tears off before you get to
use it!), or buy cards of stick on cable-markers and number each cable as

'FROM_ROOM [outlet]' 'TO_ROOM [outlet]'

eg 1234 would be from room 1 outlet 2 to room 3 outlet 4.

>How should we test it? =20

You should install it so carefully that you don't need to ;-).  Seriously,
if you start testing every cable, you'll probably get fed up very quickly-
the fastest test would be to fit RJ-45s to each end and get 10BaseT cable
tester, but unless you are pulling cables through flames, glass, saw blades
etc, it should be OK.

You probably already know that cables should be kept away from mains
cables- a metre when running parallel if you can, otherwise as far as
possible.  It might also be useful to adopt the mains wiring system where
all cables should run vertically or horizontally from an outlet, or within
6" of a horizontal or vertical corner, or be buried 50mm below the
it would be quite upsetting to cut through one at a later date if you can't
remember where it is run...

If you have plumbing for central heating etc, that's often a handy source
of ready-made holes etc which you can use, while keeping away from mains

>Any input welcome before we start the scary stuff on Monday morning.

Most important of all is to plan it out- even before you lift a floorboard
or drill a hole, have a look at what directions the boards run, joists will
be perpendicular to the boards, and if possible you want to run along the
joists (otherwise you have to lift whole boards and drill through all the
joists).  Have a look at electrical sockets etc, and guess where their
cables run, then see how you can get each of your cables routed easily- it
will save _alot_ of time next week!

There's probably more, but I expect others can fill in the blanks...

All the best!

Nigel Orr                  Research Associate   O   ______=09
Underwater Acoustics Group,              o / o    \_/(
Dept of Electrical and Electronic Engineering     (_   <   _ (
University of Newcastle Upon Tyne             \______/ \(

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