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Old 11-13-2011, 09:44 AM   #31
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Just want to share my nightmare


Quote:
Originally Posted by mnp13 View Post
Oh, I'm always up for "mine's worse than yours" stories. They actually DO make me feel better!
Emergency: make you feel better is in order.

Our house is 1200 sprawling square feet (lol) - with a frog, mouse, snake and spider (penty o spiders) laden crawlspace through which I must crawl a ridiculously long way to work on half the electrical and the plumbing - having done two bathrooms, laundry room and now the kitchen - that's a lot of time down there. Not to forget the amount of time spent down there adding in new floor joists, new ductwork, and mopping up from when I was working on the bathroom substructure and we had a septic backup . . . all in all - it aint been fun down below! I also made the mistake of working down there when a rainstorm came in - did you know my crawlspace floods when it rains? Well - it does.

And the attic: the attic is endless miles of blown in insulation which has greyed with dirt and age and comes with limited overhead space - all in all - I have to slither through mountains of this crap (which is also spider, mouse and snake laden) on my belly to get any electrical wired up. Some areas are so tight that even after digging out the insulation I can't reach the wiring and often rely on the use of extra long grabbers to do my work. Usually when I do such work the attic is a flaming 100+ degrees to boot . . . which just makes for the most disgusting work environment.

I'd like to say I'm done having to go up and down - but I know I'm not!

You're not the only one! I know how you feel With prolonged exposure to filth and vermin - you become desensitized. The worst thing for me is the snake issue . . . which no one's been able to give us a good solution to. The other week I was in the attic finishing some wiring and found a whole snakeskin. . . oi!

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Old 11-13-2011, 09:54 AM   #32
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I don't know if your walls are thick enough for these boxes, but having plaster it is much better to have the box mounted to the stud.

http://www.aifittings.com/catalog/fa...-outlet-boxes/

Also think about phone, cable TV or any computer network cables.
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:38 AM   #33
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Thank you Snav. My work seems better now! As for the snakes and mice, do you know anyone who has working quality Jack Russel Terriers? They would quickly locate and dispatch any with great joy. My first Pit Bull was "employed" as a mouse finder for a friend of mine for a day. Great fun for the dog, much easier for the person.
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:39 AM   #34
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Jim - inside walls yes, outside walls no. Thanks!
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Old 11-13-2011, 07:18 PM   #35
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Well, two wires are run. I know that doesn't sound like anything - and it certainly does not qualify as a "day's work" but I now know for certain that there are not firebreaks on the outside walls which will make things MUCH easier than I thought.

The interior walls are a pain - they have fire breaks at staggered heights, but we have a system that I think will work. I honestly think we can get the whole upstairs pulled in the next week. One room a night, I figure it will average an hour a wire, since my husband will be able to cut the holes for the boxes during the day (he's out from work from shoulder surgery but can run a Roto-zip! )

Tieing everything together is a different matter, and will be a LOT of work, but I'm going to work on the mapping tonight. I'm writing a program to do my calculations, and it will actually be online if anyone has the inclination to check my work.
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Old 11-15-2011, 11:02 AM   #36
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Last night's adventure....

We cut a hole for a new receptacle, one section over from the current one so it is centered between two windows. We could not get the wire snake down from the attic, nor could we get it up through the wall to the attic. There isn't a firebreak, the plaster comes through the lath to the point where it touches the brick. I didn't want to mess with that, so decided to pull the old wire.

As I start unscrewing the faceplace, vermiculite starts falling out. Great. I get the faceplate off, and there is mud packed closely around the sides of the receptacle - like right up to it along the contours. Weird. So I start chipping away at the plaster, vermiculite starts pouring out. The outlet was just placed in the wall. No box, no electrical tape, nothing. Just romex to a receptacle, attached to the screws on the sides and then jammed back into the wall. We disconnected the wire, covered the hole with duct tape, then used the old wire to pull a new one. I have no idea how I'm going to jam a box into there, but I'm gonna try!

On the opposite wall, the receptacle was in a metal box that appeared to be held in place with mud. The plaster in that section is all separated from the lath, so we were being very careful to not do further damage. But... it... won't... come... out. So I start chipping away at the wall - the box had been screwed to the lath, then they plastered over the screws. This particular box was metal, and the romex was run through the flexible metal stuff (that I can't remember the name of), so we got that taken apart and pulled that one through.

Yay for giant holes in plaster... NOT!

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