Low voltage conduit

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  #1  
Old 11-04-15, 09:40 AM
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Low voltage conduit

I've just finished rewiring my shop for 240v (redid most of the 120v also) and installed new code compliant sub-panel.

I'd like in the future to run RG6 and CAT6 to the shop, also the current phone circuit in the shop is horrible quality, possibly as I think they ran it in the same underground conduit carrying the 4/3 THHN.

So while I have the walls out, I was thinking of running some conduit from a receptacle box above the shop bench to above the main 240v panel (near the wiring exit, about 18' with one 90 degree bend). The walls are all OSB (not drywall, no idea why) and I plan to create a removable section surrounding the subpanel so I can get future access without having to cut out the OSB.

I'm not going to pull any wire yet as I'm pretty sure I need to run new conduit 8' under the concrete separating the shop from the house. This is work, so maybe it'll never get done (and I'll rely on wifi with a repeater) but I figure now is the time to install wall conduit.

I was thinking of running ENT. I plan to run conduit (for cat6/rg6) in the main house also so I was thinking standardizing on 1" made sense. For the shop planning on 2 CAT6, 1 voice, 1 RG6. This will all fit into a 3/4" but pulling would I think be a lot easier through 1" which is still within the 40% 2x4 rule.

Is there a reason to prefer the orange ENT. The blue smurf tubing is a lot easier to find but obviously orange usually signifies low-voltage usage.

orange: http://www.amazon.com/Carlon-SCF4X1C..._sim_sbs_328_1
 
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Old 11-04-15, 09:53 AM
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In your application blue would be fine. 3/4" would probably be all you need too.

The fill rule applies to electrical wiring due to heat dissipation. You won't have any heat generating wiring in there so max fill is limited to what will fit comfortably.
 
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Old 11-04-15, 10:04 AM
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I wasn't referring to a heat issue. Rather an ease of pulling issue.

3/4" blue is a lot cheaper in 100' lengths (~$35) but I'd read you really needed to stay at around 40% fill to have easy pulling. 1 RG6, 1 voice and 2 CAT6 would probably exceed that. Also CAT6 is pretty fragile.

Like I said, this is what I got from reading, no personal experience so I'm open to actual experience. I don't mind buying cable lube. I was planning on picking up a 50' fish tape like this one.
 
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Old 11-04-15, 02:01 PM
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I think I answered my own question on the 1" vs 3/4". I thought the studs (load bearing) were true 2x4 (as it's old construction) but they're dimensional. Nominal OD of Carlon 1" ENT is 1-5/16" which is very close to the 40% limit.
 
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Old 11-04-15, 02:34 PM
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Over 20 feet with one bend it won't make a ton of difference on the pipe size. All of those LV cables should pull easily into either size.
 
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Old 11-04-15, 04:46 PM
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I was wrong, two 90 degree bends to get from the bench to over the current subpanel in the shop/garage. That's where I'll stop for now (as this is the walls I currently have removed).

Once I trench out the concrete I can run more from that current end-point. Two more 90 degree bends to get out of the garage and under the concrete. Then straight run to house. Inside the house, dunno, not got that far yet.

Probably at least 6 total.

I just bought a 100' roll of 3/4 for $25. We'll see.
 
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Old 11-05-15, 08:35 AM
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You'll need to have an accessible pull point (such as a junction box or condulet fitting) in the middle of the run. Code allows no more than 360 degrees of bend between pull points, and even 270 can be difficult to pull.
 
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Old 11-05-15, 08:42 AM
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Yes, the point where I stop for now (above subpanel) I'll install a pull gap. Thanks.
 
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