3 gang box above a 3 gang box???

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Old 05-30-06, 04:02 PM
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Question 3 gang box above a 3 gang box???

Rewiring the basement and need to have 5 switches in a new partition wall. Where we need to have the switches we only have an 8" wide cavity and can't fit sid-by-side boxes. I don't really like those doubled up switches (we want the big decora style rockers) so can I mount one 3 gang box above the other 3 gang box to fit the switches in? Any code restrictions?

Thanks guys!
 
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Old 05-30-06, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by syakoban
Rewiring the basement and need to have 5 switches in a new partition wall. Where we need to have the switches we only have an 8" wide cavity and can't fit sid-by-side boxes. I don't really like those doubled up switches (we want the big decora style rockers) so can I mount one 3 gang box above the other 3 gang box to fit the switches in? Any code restrictions?

Thanks guys!
If you care to mount the Decoras sideways you could do an 'n'-gang if you mount a metal sectional box oriented vertically. Restrictions could include, in the case of metal boxes, running neutral and hot for each circuit through the same hole. Obviously that does not apply if all of these are just switch legs.

Also if your wires are transiting one box to get to the other, make sure you figure your box fill. I wouldn't think you'd have a problem, although if you're using 12 AWG it could be.

I would probably do it the way you're suggesting. But make sure you can find the right 3-gang coverplate to match your configuration. I don't think 3 decoras is a problem, but if you want that in brass or stainless with a standard duplex recep or a blank slot you may need a special order. I am not a fan of sectional coverplates.
 
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Old 05-30-06, 08:09 PM
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Thanks ArgMeMatey. I am well practiced at box fill calcs. so that's not an issue and we're just going for white plastic cover plates.

I've never heard of a restriction on "running neutral and hot for each circuit through the same hole". If I'm using NMB, how can you not do that when you have both neutrals and hots?

Also, since the boxes will be in close proximity vertically, I thought the feeds to the bottom box (which have to drop from above) could loop under the box and come in the bottom. Any issue w/doing that?

Thanks!
 
  #4  
Old 05-30-06, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by syakoban

If I'm using NMB, how can you not do that when you have both neutrals and hots?

Also, since the boxes will be in close proximity vertically, I thought the feeds to the bottom box (which have to drop from above) could loop under the box and come in the bottom. Any issue w/doing that?

Thanks!
I am not an electrician, so my suggestions in this case are based mostly on the knowledge that when it comes to device boxes there are customary heights but not required heights.

You're right, if you're using NMB and plastic boxes you have no issue. My house is almost all THHN in conduit and metal boxes, so it is an issue for me with 4-ways. With a metallic system inductive heating is the concern. As usual, NM makes things a lot simpler.

Only issues with looping that I am aware of would be typical: keeping 1-1/4" from edge of framing member, securing within X inches of the box. I have no idea if there's a minimum bend radius for NMB like there is for conduit!

So if I am wrong I hope of the pros will speak up.
 
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