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#187829 - 07/11/09 12:19 AM Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires??  
GDKNY  Offline
New Member
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 3
NYC
Hey guys

I have about 500' of 3/0, and 500' of 350 MCM i need to mark red, white and blue. Thats a LOT of tape. I have not installed the wires yet so I attempted to use spray paint. We tested out a can of Krylon Flat white, and it looked okay, but did not work so well. Took about two cans to do 80 feet. Can I get any special type of spray paint designed to work with electrical wires?


Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#187830 - 07/11/09 12:28 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: GDKNY]  
gfretwell  Offline


Member
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,142
Estero,Fl,usa
On wire bigger than #6 you only need to identify the ends near the terminations. Be sure you do it before you pull in the wire so you are sure you get the same wire on each end.


Greg Fretwell

#187831 - 07/11/09 12:46 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: gfretwell]  
Lostazhell  Offline
Member
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 1,431
Bakersfield, CA (Originally Or...
I've used a black sharpie to re-identify a white switch leg in a pinch before..., but I've yet to re-identify 500' of anything. I'm just curious GDKNY why you would need to color the entire run? I know NYC has a lot of their own oddities when it comes to code amendments.


#187832 - 07/11/09 01:30 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: gfretwell]  
Trumpy  Offline


Member
Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 8,223
SI,New Zealand
Greg,
Do you guys in the US not have heat-shrink tubing?
It comes in all sorts of pretty colours and thin and thick-walled, the thick walled stuff is adhesive lined too.
Google Raychem.


Last edited by Trumpy; 07/11/09 01:33 AM.

#187833 - 07/11/09 01:52 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: Trumpy]  
gfretwell  Offline


Member
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,142
Estero,Fl,usa
Sure we have heat shrink but I don't see it used to reidentify wires. I have heard of being used to repair cracked insulation in ceiling boxes.
I have never been sure how many layers of heat shrink you would need to be "equivalent to that of the conductors" per 110.14(B)


Greg Fretwell

#187835 - 07/11/09 03:02 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: gfretwell]  
noderaser  Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 404
Portland, Oregon, United State...
We use heatshrink all the time to color-code cable lengths, attach identifying marks, etc. in the entertainment industry.


#187836 - 07/11/09 03:04 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: gfretwell]  
Alan Belson  Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,803
Mayenne N. France
I'd try inks. Ink marking of wire is an industrial process. See, for example: http://www.taymer.com/html/cable_marking_machines__hot_st.html

So, suitable inks exist. Felt tip spirit based markers might do the trick. Whether you can get white is questionable though.

For application on small quantities of wire, a professional system is not going to be economic. The simplest way might be to build a simple spool to spool manual crank winder and have a helper daub the ink on the wire as it goes past with a brush, an airbrush or a felt tip.


Wood work but can't!

#187840 - 07/11/09 08:51 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: Lostazhell]  
GDKNY  Offline
New Member
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 3
NYC
Originally Posted by gfretwell
On wire bigger than #6 you only need to identify the ends near the terminations. Be sure you do it before you pull in the wire so you are sure you get the same wire on each end.


Not in NYC you can't. Most inspectors do not accept striping of the wires either. (taping it like a candy cane for example).

Originally Posted by Lostazhell
I've used a black sharpie to re-identify a white switch leg in a pinch before..., but I've yet to re-identify 500' of anything. I'm just curious GDKNY why you would need to color the entire run? I know NYC has a lot of their own oddities when it comes to code amendments.


We're doing a 3 Phase, 1200A service for a strip of businesses. All the wires from the switches, in the troughs and all the enclosures are visible from end to end. And like you said, its NYC.


#187842 - 07/11/09 11:22 AM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: GDKNY]  
electure  Offline


Member
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,262
Fullerton, CA USA
I think that colored wire in the sizes (3/0, 350KCM) you mention are a fairly recent product.

What did the NYC inspectors accept in the past?



#187844 - 07/11/09 12:02 PM Re: Anyone use PAINT instead of tape to mark wires?? [Re: electure]  
gfretwell  Offline


Member
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,142
Estero,Fl,usa
I thought NYC was on the NEC now.
If they really want an unblemished color along the entire length of the wire I am not sure exactly what kind of paint will work. The teflon outer jacket on THHN is not going to hold any paint I know of that well. Pulling it will result in black "stripes".


Greg Fretwell

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