Add electric circuit on steel stud wall?

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  #1  
Old 01-07-07, 11:27 PM
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Add electric circuit on steel stud wall?

Hi everyone,

I want to add some light fixtures to a wall that has drywall over steel studs. Any suggestions on how to route the cabling (romex or emt?) through with as little drywall damage as possible? I have done it tons of times with wood studs. How do you know where the esiting holes in the steel studs are without ripping off large amounts of drywall? Or how do you punch holes without doing the same?

Many thanks for your suggestions! Jim.
 
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  #2  
Old 01-08-07, 05:30 AM
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Why do you need to know where the holes are? Use old work boxes and run the cables from above or below.
 
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Old 01-08-07, 06:25 AM
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Good question, I should have been more specific. The sconce fixture is in one stud bay on the wall and I want to add another sconce several bays over. The stud walls terminate at a concrete header at the ceiling and there is no basement access from below. With a wood stud wall I'd use a spade bit to drill through each stud (either with bit extenders or make a couple drywall holes) and fish the romex through to the new location. Do you know what the equivalent would be for steel studs?

Jim.
 
  #4  
Old 01-08-07, 06:57 AM
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You cannot simply run cable through the holes in steel studs. You need plastic bushings at the holes to protect the cable. It sounds like you are going to have to cut holes and then patch them.
 
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Old 01-08-07, 07:18 AM
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Darn! I was hopign there'd be a secret way to avoid that! Many thanks for the reply, I'll do it the right way. Jim.
 
  #6  
Old 01-09-07, 11:01 AM
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If you use type MC or type AC cable, then you don't need the bushings. The bushings are there to protect the plastic sheath of type NM cable from being cut by the sharp edges of the steel stud. MC and AC have a metal covering on the cable that would provide the necessary protection.

See http://www.nema.org/stds/fieldreps/faqs.cfm and search down for 'bushing'.

Type MC and type AC cable must be wired to _metal_ boxes using appropriate fittings, because the armor sheath must be properly grounded.

-Jon
 
  #7  
Old 01-09-07, 12:04 PM
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Thanks! Jim.
 
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