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#168450 - 09/05/07 05:30 AM SER Used In Commercial Buildings  
iwire  Offline
Moderator
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
North Attleboro, MA USA
Just some photos I took that I thought would spark some code debate.

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

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#168458 - 09/05/07 09:46 AM Re: SER Used In Commercial Buildings [Re: iwire]  
renosteinke  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Blue Collar Country
I remember once seeing similar pics. I believe that technically speaking, that this is allowed.

That doesn't mean I like it. Heck, today I'll be under a firehouse, re-locating the panel feeds .... and I never considered SER as a wiring method. Commercial gets pipe ... and metal flex where necessary. Not romex, SER, smurf, or any other 'easy' way. Why? Who knows! It just seems right.

The pics are a good illustration of the difference between 'code minimum' and 'trade practice.'


#168461 - 09/05/07 10:12 AM Re: SER Used In Commercial Buildings [Re: renosteinke]  
iwire  Offline
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Posts: 4,391
North Attleboro, MA USA
Originally Posted by renosteinke
I remember once seeing similar pics. I believe that technically speaking, that this is allowed.


It is in MA and was under the NEC until the prohibition against NM above suspended ceilings went into the NEC.

Quote
Commercial gets pipe ... and metal flex where necessary. Not romex, SER, smurf, or any other 'easy' way.


Isn't that a question best answered by the person paying for the work?

Quote
The pics are a good illustration of the difference between 'code minimum' and 'trade practice.'


Perhaps a better illustration of the different methods used in different areas, this is trade practice in this area.

Pipe is almost never used above ceilings, MC is most common and when allowed NM / SE etc.

It's funny though.....the plumbers in MA can't use plastic in commercial work but I can run NM.

When I work in RI I can't use NM but the plumbers can use plastic.



Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

#168464 - 09/05/07 12:48 PM Re: SER Used In Commercial Buildings [Re: iwire]  
pauluk  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
Norfolk, England
Quote
the difference between 'code minimum' and 'trade practice.'


Or what one might consider to be good practice even if not always common trade practice.

There's no specific ban here on using the British equivalent of NM cable in light commercial applications, although in many places where surface run neatness would dictate the use of plastic trunking.

In many cases though, in my opinion the amount of work involved in cutting and fitting rectangular PVC trunking and then laying NM cables exceeeds that needed to just run PVC conduit and pull singles through it. The conduit gives a much neater result anyway.

See this thread for an example.



#168473 - 09/05/07 09:11 PM Re: SER Used In Commercial Buildings [Re: pauluk]  
renosteinke  Offline
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A fair point taken ... defining 'trade practice' is a lot like capturing a moonbeam; you know it's there, but can't quite grab it laugh

As for the customer making the call .... the customer only rarely has any input. He'll call and ask me for a price. I'll give one based upon how I plan to do the job. Only if he specifically asks will the discussion of wiring methods begin.

As I see it, the customer is paying for my judgment, as much as anything else (Scary thought, isn't it? laugh ) Part of my 'professional judgment' in deciding how the job will be done.

I'll admit that my bias is rooted in age and tradition, as much as any 'logical' reason. Heck, when I need to trim a tree, I reach for the axe .... and not one of those new-fangled chainsaws laugh


#168561 - 09/09/07 10:32 AM Re: SER Used In Commercial Buildings [Re: renosteinke]  
stevenj76  Offline
Junior Member
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 16
Portland, Oregon USA
Can you get pictures of the electrical room? I love where all those SER's come out at the top of the wall. Here, they would have to come out individually spaced, or if bundled, in a sleeve, for firestopping. I've got to see this electrical room! Do you think they sleeve it in 1 1/2" PVC? Support it with 2-hole straps screwed down to 2x4's? Big black hvac zip-ties?

The suspense is killing me.



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