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#91718 - 01/31/05 08:30 PM WireTracks for Electrical Retrofit
Frankz Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/31/05
Posts: 2
Loc: Orlando, FL
Hello,

I recently found a product that would enable me to upgrade wiring without major sheetrock work. It is called WireTracks and it is a raceway that installs between the baseboard molding and the framing, right below the sheetrock.
http://wiretracks.com/prod-rf.html

I contacted WireTracks and they informed me their product was not intended for line voltage wiring because of its closeness to the surface of the wall and risk for screw or nail penetration.

However, they mentioned some alternatives:

I could use their removable crown molding product and avoid the issue of electrical penetration by using conduit behind the crown molding.

I could install a metal plate between the baseboard and the wiring, inside or outside of their channel.

When installing the WireTracks, I could use the opening in the wall to run the wiring through the studs and reserve the wiretracks for low-voltage.

These solutions all strike me as gray area because of the newness of the product. Are these solutions legitimate, gray, or undefined?

Do arc-protection circuit breakers circumvent some of these problems?

Thanks,
Frank

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#91719 - 01/31/05 09:01 PM Re: WireTracks for Electrical Retrofit
e57 Offline
Member

Registered: 05/27/03
Posts: 2837
Loc: S.F.,CA USA
Wired my wife's Doll-house in a foil-type tape circuit, that sticks to the wall. Turns out they make a UL version for real use! Haven't seen any, and not sure I want to.

Also covered in art. 324. Flat Conductor Cable. Not permited in resi or hospitals.

Any way the only idea I like is : "use the opening in the wall to run the wiring through the studs and reserve the wiretracks for low-voltage."

Now if the Wiretrack people were smart, they'd make the stuff in 14ga steel, and get that listed for resi use.
_________________________
Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason

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#91720 - 02/01/05 10:32 AM Re: WireTracks for Electrical Retrofit
amp-man Offline
Member

Registered: 06/23/01
Posts: 144
Loc: Sacto, California US of A
FYI, flat conductor cable (FCC) is not just prohibited in residential and certain other occupancies, it can ONLY be installed under carpet squares. Basically, it's designed for commercial office space.

Cliff

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#91721 - 02/01/05 11:32 AM Re: WireTracks for Electrical Retrofit
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9045
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I saw a guy using a 1.25" strap of 1/8" galvanized steel from the hardware store under the baseboard to protect a wire below the drywall and I was hard pressed to find a reason to fail him. I had originally failed it because it wasn't protected. They sawed a short kerf in the back of the baseboard to clear the steel and off they went.
It could have been thinner but that was what they could find on short notice. They fixed it while I was eating lunch and got their OK.
_________________________
Greg Fretwell

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#91722 - 02/03/05 09:17 PM Re: WireTracks for Electrical Retrofit
tdhorne Offline
Member

Registered: 03/22/01
Posts: 344
Loc: Maryland, USA
My favorite version of this is 4000 series, two compartment, Wiremold installed in place of the baseboards. We used it to retrofit a mansion into the office of a museum. In that application we installed the outlets using old work boxes and fished a 3/4" flexible metallic conduit whip down to the back of the raceway. With a wood spacer under it, shoe molding in front of the spacer, and cap molding on top of it you would never know it was not just a length of baseboard until we popped off the covers to make a change in the wiring.
--
Tom H
_________________________
Tom Horne

"This alternating current stuff is just a fad. It is much too dangerous for general use" Thomas Alva Edison

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#91723 - 02/23/05 10:26 AM Re: WireTracks for Electrical Retrofit
Frankz Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/31/05
Posts: 2
Loc: Orlando, FL
Hello,

I ended up using the WireTracks and they worked really well. I dropped 16 gauge plates directly into the channel, so there was no extra work. This is just a cool solution and am really pleased.

I looked at the Wiremold 4000 series and found it to be extremely expensive and just a little less ugly than everything else they make.

With the WireTracks, I got to use my own molding and you can't even tell that it is there.

Thanks for your advice and help.

-Frank

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