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#1132 - 04/28/01 06:37 PM Metal or Plastic?  
Bill Addiss  Offline
Member
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 3,878
NY, USA
If you had your choice would you use Metal or Plastic boxes for your Taped/Untaped Prong-Up/Down receptacle?

How about Conduit?

Why?

[Linked Image]
Bill


Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#1133 - 04/28/01 08:59 PM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
sparky  Offline
Member
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,306
well....we can look at this in terms of usage, location, durability ,callbacks, etc. myself i use a mix of the two.

but probably the most common approach is time, and time is a bid winner.

one metal CON i did notice recently was that the old work metal box ears screws protruded into the box about 1/16". This was just enough to prevent a rotary timer and some dimmers to enter, had to get the dremmel out...
[Linked Image]


#1134 - 04/28/01 11:30 PM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
Scott35  Offline

Broom Pusher and
Member
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,707
Anaheim, CA. USA
OK everyone, warm up the flameshooters!! [Linked Image]

Metal boxes, Metal conduit, Taped Receptacles with Ground up.

Metal conduit system for secure installation.
Taped Receptacle sides in case someone desides to pull a live Receptacle out of the box.
Ground up in case something metallic falls down onto the inserted plug [will not help for 2 wire plugs, though].

One other thought - A person could easilly have an IG circuit by using 12/2 Romex and non-metallic boxes. I'm sure this is not new to many people, but it is to me!

Let the Flames Begin!!

Scott SET


Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!

#1135 - 04/29/01 01:16 AM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
sparky66wv  Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,236
West Virginia
I was trained with metal boxes, even in residential. We'd pigtail an EGC to a green screw, crimp it down with a PT-70M barrel crimp, and strategically place the sharp pointy mess in an unused corner of the box.
Very labor intensive.

Just mounting the box plumb and square required drilling recesses for the jutting screws on the box sides. Only then would we finally nail the box to the stud.

Remove the unused loom clamp to save on wire count, and we used CXW's (3 1/2" deep) unless at the end of a run.

BTW we NEVER used #14 wire, even on 15A protected lighting circuits.

Metal staples were the only thing available at the time, I've since been able to somewhat aquire plastic cable straps, which a far superior. (Specially stocked for Musser Electric and Kelly Electric, the two past apprentices of my old boss.)

I use plastic Carlon boxes now, and I'll use PVC every time the situation permits. Less bonding /grounding issues to worry about.

Bill has me almost convinced to use #14 wire on my next rough in...appropriately, of course. But I digress again...


-Virgil
Residential/Commercial Inspector
5 Star Inspections
Member IAEI

#1136 - 04/29/01 02:19 AM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
Bill Addiss  Offline
Member
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 3,878
NY, USA
'66

BTW, removing the extra clamp does not save your wire count according to 370-16(b)(2) The deduction taken is for 1 or more cable clamps within the box.

I'm a big Carlon fan myself. It makes things much easier. Boxes are more roomy and non-conductive so less labor involved (no bonding)

As far as the #14 goes, In order to get work you sometimes have to bid the jobs like everyone else does and then give the customer the opportunity to upgrade a notch. Lately I've been very aware of instances where this minimum requirement (#14) has been abused by very long runs and excessive voltage drops. I would recommend using #12 for these feeders.

[Linked Image]
Bill


#1137 - 04/29/01 02:42 AM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
sparky66wv  Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,236
West Virginia
Wow... there's another one to add to my list!

Joe Musser and I have noticed that ol' Jim didn't know code as well as he let on... We rarely questioned him. In his defense, he usually erred on the conservative side... beyond code.

I'm a little embarrassed that I'm only learning some of these things now!

-Virgil
"I ask the stupid ones, so you don't have to!" (all in fun...)

[This message has been edited by sparky66wv (edited 04-29-2001).]


-Virgil
Residential/Commercial Inspector
5 Star Inspections
Member IAEI

#1138 - 04/29/01 10:38 AM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
Merritt  Offline
Member
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 21
Miami, Fl, USA
i have to agree with scott on this one.. for all new construction, and where ever possible, we use metal 1900 boxes, piped in, devices taped... when we have to fish things in, depending on the situation, we'll use romex, MC, or greenfeild.. we like to use raceway as much as possible, just incase the custormer changes their mind.. we hardly ever use smurf either.. pullin in that extra ground.. more material waste etc..

-m


Remember when you read my posts, im only 17, still learning... "Hey, its takes what it takes!"

#1139 - 04/29/01 11:45 AM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
sparky66wv  Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 2,236
West Virginia
I always pull a green wire, even in metal conduit. Or does that constitiue a ground loop with parrallel paths?


-Virgil
Residential/Commercial Inspector
5 Star Inspections
Member IAEI

#1140 - 04/29/01 06:57 PM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
Tom  Offline
Member
Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 1,044
Shinnston, WV USA
For residential- plastic, unless you don't want to get the job. I've had very little trouble with plastic boxes.

Commercial- such as offices- depends on the depth of the customers checking account. If the job is so tight that I have to use non-metallic cable, I use plastic boxes. If they can afford to upgrade to MC cable, obviously this gets a metal box.

Tom


Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.

#1141 - 04/30/01 04:48 PM Re: Metal or Plastic?  
Anonymous
Unregistered

Quote
I always pull a green wire, even in metal conduit. Or does that constitute a ground loop with parallel paths?

Parallel paths are okay. It's loops that are a problem, mainly when earth can be reached by current running in the wrong direction.


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