Mounting Light Switches On Side of Cabinet?

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Old 07-16-13, 06:43 PM
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Mounting Light Switches On Side of Cabinet?

Hey everyone, thanks in advance for any input you may have.

Currently the last kitchen cabinet on my exterior wall has 19 inches between it and the exterior door casing. There are three light switches between these that control inside and outside lights. I want to put an 18in wide pantry cabinet here and mount the switches on the side of this cabinet. There is no other wall to move these switches to that makes sense. The current switch box would remain accessible with a cutout inside the cabinet and cover plate serving as the junction box. What do you think, big mistake?

1. Is this doable while still remaining in code?
2. Better option not being considered?
3. Will this look dumb and leave as is?

Pictures of kitchen attached and pantry cabinet example. (cabinet will go where garbage can is in the kitchen pic, don't pay attention to the gun behind it )
 
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Old 07-16-13, 07:15 PM
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I don't see any issue with doing what you want. You'd probably use a 3-gang blank plate with a 7/8" hole cut in it. Then use a connector and liquidtight conduit to jump over to a new 3-gang box mounted to a cutout in the cabinet. Use THHN between the two boxes.

I'd then use some wood to box in around the rear of your new boxes to make it clean on the interior of the cabinet. Not required, but I wouldn't want to catch my hand on the somewhat sharp metal or plastic boxes.
 

Last edited by Zorfdt; 07-16-13 at 08:35 PM. Reason: changed wording to ensure the new switches are in an electrical box. (Thanks for the catch Ray!)
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Old 07-16-13, 07:32 PM
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I want to put an 18in wide pantry cabinet here and mount the switches on the side of this cabinet.
No problem. I've done it and seen it done by others, not frequently but not unheard of.

Since the new box will only have the three switches in it, I would look at using a shallow 3-gang box, or three shallow gangable boxes joined into one. The question would be what is the shallowest box that will allow conduit to enter the end of it. That is, to enter through the side of the box nearest the wall.

Alternatively, the conduit could end in a 90[SUP]o[/SUP] connector on the top or bottom of the new box. The end of the conduit at the existing switch box should definitely end in a 90[SUP]o[/SUP] connector mounted to a hole you cut in a metal 3-gang blank plate. The size of the hole will be determined by the size of the conduit that you choose.

There's no need to use liquidtight here; greenfield is good enough. Adding a false wall or two to box the conduit and boxes in is an excellent idea.
 
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Old 07-16-13, 08:33 PM
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Much appreciated! I had never heard of this being done before and didn't want it to be the "what the heck!" item. Could definitely use the extra space in the kitchen with the addition of that cabinet.
 
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