Figure 5-56. - Fish-tape hook.
about 3 inches at the end of the tape until it is red-hot, and bend a hook on it about an inch long, like that shown in figure 5-56. This shape of hook seems to work best. After the hook is formed, reheat the end of the tape until it is red. Allow the end to cool until it becomes straw- colored. Then plunge it into a can of water until it is cool. This process restores the temper to the hook area.
Once you have the fish tape in the conduit, attach the hook to the wires to be pulled, as shown in figure 5-57. Remove 4 to 6 inches of the insulation from the ends of the wires and thread the ends through the hook in opposite directions; bend them back and twist them around each other; then tape the hook and bare conductors to strengthen the attachment and make pulling easier. Use just enough tape to cover the hook and wires.
Wire pulling usually takes two people-one to pull the fish tape and the other to feed the conductors into the conduit. The fish tape should be fed into the end of the conduit run from which it will be easiest to pull. It is usually best to pull the conductors from the distribution panel to the first box in the run, especially if the panel is energized. This procedure prevents your having to pull on the steel tape near an energized bus.
WARNING Whenever conductors are being pulled into energized panels, be careful to keep clear of the bus bars. All energized parts should be covered with a rubber blanket.
When several conductors must be fed into a conduit, you should keep them parallel, straight, and free from kinks and bends. Wires that are allowed to cross each other form a bulge and are hard to pull around bends. Whenever possible, feed conductors downward; for example, from the second floor to the first, so the weight of the wires will help in the pulling process. Another way to ease the pulling of conductors is to rub an approved lubricant, such as soap, talc, soapstone, or other noncorrosive substance, onto the insulation or blow it into the conduit. You may find that it is hard to keep the fish tape from slipping in your hands when you are pulling long runs or runs with several bends. When slipping is a problem, you can use the back side (insulation crushing point) of a pair of side-cutting pliers to grip the tape to give you a good pulling handle.
Remember to leave at least 6 inches of free conductor at each outlet and switch box to make up splices or to connect devices. Conductors that are not spliced or connected to a device can be pulled directly through the box.
The number of conductors you can have in conduit is based on the size of the conduit, the type of conductor insulation, and the size of the conductors. The NEC©, chapter 9, has several tables to help you determine how many conductors of a certain size and insulation type you can have in a given size of conduit. These tables are based on fill; that is, the cross-sectional area of the conductors inside the conduit can take up only a certain percentage of the free space inside the conduit. You must use these tables whenever there is a question on the number of conductors to be pulled. Too many conductors in a conduit cause overheating, which reduces conductor ampacity.
Once you have installed the conductors and all other finish work is complete, you are ready to do the electrical finish part. Finish work for conduit installations is the same as that for NM cable installations, which was covered previously in this chapter.
Figure 5-57. - Wires attached to fish tape.Continue Reading