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Thread: Copper Tubing used as conduit?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by GerryB View Post
    They don't use MI cable in residential. Unlikely a plumber would chop it in a hospital or some place like that where it is used.

    The typical use for MI is where code requires fire survival for some specified period of time that cannot easily be achieved by putting a fireproof chase around other Chapter 3 methods.
    Since the insulation is a mineral oxide powder it does not degrade with heat at the anticipated temperatures. So the wiring will survive any temperature that does not melt the copper itself.

  2. #22
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    Yeah, it looks like MI

    But handy men will use plastic plumbing pipe as a wiring method all the time. I asked a handy man about this. He said he only carries plumbing pipe on the truck because it can be used with water or wires. Where as electrical conduit doesn't work well for running plumbing lines.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buck Parrish View Post
    I asked a handy man about this. He said he only carries plumbing pipe on the truck because it can be used with water or wires. Where as electrical conduit doesn't work well for running plumbing lines.
    Whereas his brother the other handyman carries only PVC conduit because plastic plumbing pipe doesn't work well for running wires.
    Code references based on 2005 NEC
    Larry B. Fine
    Master Electrician
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    Richmond, VA

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve66 View Post
    Just going from the photo, now I'm thinking that this stuff looks so much like copper tubing, how do we know a plumber won't try cutting into it sometime?

    I'm wondering if the manufacturer puts any markings on the copper jacket? It seems like they should be required to do that, just to make sure it isn't mistaken for copper tubing.
    I'm sure that somewhere there is a video of a plumber putting a saddle valve on a mi cable carrying 480-volt, and tapping into a lot more than he bargained for...
    Electricians do it until it Hertz!

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by GerryB View Post
    They don't use MI cable in residential. Unlikely a plumber would chop it in a hospital or some place like that where it is used.
    Exactly, a place where it might be used may have many possible systems both piping and electric lines, a plumber had better be certain what he is cutting into before proceeding.
    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

  6. #26
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    The UK Houses of Parliament are due to be rewired over the next few years, anyone fancy the job? Part of the spec is copper conduit is to be used throughout.

    Estimated cost £40,000,000,000.
    The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwired View Post
    Just like an electrician shouldn't splice into a circuit if he doesn't at least know if it is the correct voltage for what he is going to splice into it, or verify it is off before working on it, shouldn't a plumber know what kind of media is in the line he is going to cut into and whether it is under pressure or not?
    Of course they should, but that doesn't mean they will. And I understand this is used in hospitals and other commercial areas where you typically have journeymen, and not handymen.

    But I also know how remodels and construction in these buildings happens in isolated areas, and the MI may just be passing through.

    I can easily picture a journeyman plumber telling himself "I've got the water turned off, so it should be safe to cut this line and move it out of the way without tracing it down."

    Besides the obvious danger to the plumber, there is also the danger to the critical circuits this stuff is feeding. It almost seems like trying to solve one problem (having the feeder survive a fire) is causing a more likely problem (an outage due to an accidental cut.)

    I guess if I ever have to spec it, I'll just make sure its well marked.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve66 View Post
    Of course they should, but that doesn't mean they will. And I understand this is used in hospitals and other commercial areas where you typically have journeymen, and not handymen.

    But I also know how remodels and construction in these buildings happens in isolated areas, and the MI may just be passing through.

    I can easily picture a journeyman plumber telling himself "I've got the water turned off, so it should be safe to cut this line and move it out of the way without tracing it down."

    Besides the obvious danger to the plumber, there is also the danger to the critical circuits this stuff is feeding. It almost seems like trying to solve one problem (having the feeder survive a fire) is causing a more likely problem (an outage due to an accidental cut.)

    I guess if I ever have to spec it, I'll just make sure its well marked.
    Since you often have a whole passel of MI running around a hospital, it's easy to think "Oh, here's where they ran all the water lines. How convenient."

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve66 View Post
    Of course they should, but that doesn't mean they will. And I understand this is used in hospitals and other commercial areas where you typically have journeymen, and not handymen.

    But I also know how remodels and construction in these buildings happens in isolated areas, and the MI may just be passing through.

    I can easily picture a journeyman plumber telling himself "I've got the water turned off, so it should be safe to cut this line and move it out of the way without tracing it down."

    Besides the obvious danger to the plumber, there is also the danger to the critical circuits this stuff is feeding. It almost seems like trying to solve one problem (having the feeder survive a fire) is causing a more likely problem (an outage due to an accidental cut.)

    I guess if I ever have to spec it, I'll just make sure its well marked.
    I don't know what is common today, an older small hospital where I used to do work for had copper tubing for the oxygen system. Two other common uses for copper is boiler lines or refrigeration, might be other possible systems using copper as well. LP gas is run through copper quite often - though might not see that in a hospital all that often.

    Seems you need to be certain what you are cutting into.
    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

  10. #30
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    Maybe more likely than a tradesman cutting it would be some one trying to steal copper.

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