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
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.
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
Figure 5-57.Wires attached to fish tape.