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Old 07-01-2013, 11:53 PM   #1
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help installing track lights in a small retail store


im a contractor and a retail store owner asked me to install a few small ikea track lights, any direction would help from experienced electricians.

This is my situation, please let me know if this is ok?
this isa small retail store with a large metal florescent track light that i removed. It had an on/off switch. It is connected to BX cable with a Red, Black and White cable. i am connecting 3 small lights to that line. I took the 3 wire BX and installed a metal box in the ceiling where i am connecting yellow cable the owner purchased (black, white and copper ground). The yellow is now coming out of the metal box to another metal box that will connect the light. the light has black, white and ground.

i will cap off the black on the bx, connect red to black on yellow cable and white to white and ground the yellow copper to the metal box.

on the light i will connect black to black from yellow cable and white to white. the ground from the light i will connect to the metal box. and so on for other 2 lights.

does this sound right?
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:28 AM   #2
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help installing track lights in a small retail store


Just curious as to why R to B in the first box (with the BX) instead of B to B? What were the original connections to the fluorescent? Are there any other 3-wire BXs in there?

You said it had an "on/off switch": on the fixture? Are there any wall switches that controlled this fixture, like 3-ways?

Is this a drop ceiling? If so, I don't believe Romex (the yellow [12/2]) cable can be used).

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Old 07-02-2013, 05:51 AM   #3
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No, it sounds as if you need to hire a licensed electrical contractor being you are working on someone else's retail space.
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Old 07-02-2013, 06:00 AM   #4
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help installing track lights in a small retail store


#1 It would be great if you could add your location in your profile.
Anyplace I've ever heard of in the US any electrical work in a commercial building or public meeting place must be done by a licensed electrician. Also all the wires need to be run is steel conduit.
You could loose your license for doing work out of the scope of license.
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Old 07-02-2013, 08:01 AM   #5
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You probably need to call an electrician if you are a contractor you should be familiar with the liability issues associated with doing electrical work for a commercial client as oppose to a DIY project at home.
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Old 07-02-2013, 08:38 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joecaption View Post
#1 It would be great if you could add your location in your profile.
Anyplace I've ever heard of in the US any electrical work in a commercial building or public meeting place must be done by a licensed electrician. Also all the wires need to be run is steel conduit.
You could loose your license for doing work out of the scope of license.
All wires do not need to be run in steel conduit; different jobs will have different types of wiring methods and materials. For the commercial space from the OP's question, MC cable would probably be fine.

The OP should sub this work out to a licensed electrician.

Also, I highly doubt that this store is wired in BX cable.
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Old 07-02-2013, 09:00 AM   #7
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if i were a reader of this post i would also suggest the obvious as well, to get a licensed electrician. that aside, the store owner is trying to save money and im trying to make it. also the owner is a friend. I am sure many people come across situations similar and want to save as much as possible by DIY, even a store, so real world suggestions would be appreciated, just not "get an electrician," because im sure there are many people that have the ability to figure it out themselves.

we are in NY, as far as i can tell everything in the ceiling is BX or whatever its called - RED, WHITE and BLACK metal casing wrapped.

i did r to b because a) i think i came across that set up on another forum and b) i tested it and it worked

the on / off switch is part of a series of switches to other light - 5, not sure about 3-way

not a drop ceiling, 12x12 squares nailed to strips on beams

so can you go from metal wire to plastic.
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:24 AM   #8
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You are just asking for trouble. NY? You got to be kidding me. Hire a real electrician.

I get what you are trying to do. Help a friend and make a few bucks at the same time.
But this is commercial space and you do not own it.

Be very careful should you proceed.
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Old 07-02-2013, 01:06 PM   #9
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help installing track lights in a small retail store


Da1999.,

I know you will not like to hear what we will tell you and this is a commercal space and I know you are GC but you should know what is your limit what it can be covered on your GC liscense and majorty of GC's I know they try to mess around with electrical system and do worst than it was oringally done in first place.

So therefore for moi., just cut the loss and get electrician and let them do the hook up properly due we do know what it have to be done properly in commercal locations.

Be aware in NY area are very strict with commercal locations.

I know one guy from NY area and he will agree with this comment.

Merci,
Marc
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:49 PM   #10
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By trying to help out both your friend and self, should anything bad happen you may both be screwed when the insurance doesn't cover the future claim. Your friend might loose the business and you might end up in court.
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Old 07-02-2013, 05:39 PM   #11
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I know you're trying to help, and I'm the first to suggest answers, but electricity in a commercial space is not the place to experiment and guess. Explain to your friend that you simply do not want the liability.

Do you seriously want this on your conscience if someone gets shocked, or a fire starts? Think about it.

This is a DIY forum. Commercial spaces aren't DIY projects. I'd even help contractors here doing residential work. Explain to your friend that the biggest favor you can do for him is get this done with permits and licenses.
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Old 07-03-2013, 06:46 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by da1999 View Post
if i were a reader of this post i would also suggest the obvious as well, to get a licensed electrician. that aside, the store owner is trying to save money and im trying to make it. also the owner is a friend. I am sure many people come across situations similar and want to save as much as possible by DIY, even a store, so real world suggestions would be appreciated, just not "get an electrician," because im sure there are many people that have the ability to figure it out themselves.

we are in NY, as far as i can tell everything in the ceiling is BX or whatever its called - RED, WHITE and BLACK metal casing wrapped.

i did r to b because a) i think i came across that set up on another forum and b) i tested it and it worked

the on / off switch is part of a series of switches to other light - 5, not sure about 3-way

not a drop ceiling, 12x12 squares nailed to strips on beams

so can you go from metal wire to plastic.
what are the voltages of the BX wire ??

and or of the store

commerical may be 277 for lights ..... OUCH !!
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:21 AM   #13
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help installing track lights in a small retail store


GUYS! Didn't you read? The owner is trying to save money. Come on, let's give him a break. That should be all that matters.
The fact that the OP is a "contractor" makes it OK. He'll figure it out as he goes, with help. Maybe it'll be wrong and/or unsafe, but at least it'll work.



I am in NYS, and some of the HACK work I have seen in commercial places is downright scary.
Licensing in most of the state is sporadic at best, and without licensing away goes any insurance requirements. We need statewide licensing and accountability in NY to prevent people like the OP from doing work in places where volumes of people will be, such as commercial spaces. Problem is, as long as NYC and LI are part of NY this is never happen.
IMO NYC and LI should either secede from, or they should make them a separate part of NY so we can get real world logical things done everywhere else.
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Old 07-03-2013, 09:49 AM   #14
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At my recent class they showed this.....

http://youtu.be/FMb5zhtR8hw

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