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Old 10-15-2008, 12:29 AM   #1
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Knob and Tube Splices


I have a 1912 home with the old knob and tube wiring with new fuse box and some new Romex wiring.

I have attached a picture of one of the splices from KT. Here in the near future looking to replace entirely, however, want to make sure KT splices are safe in the short term................
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Old 10-15-2008, 02:21 AM   #2
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Knob and Tube Splices


Don't leave them any longer than have to and per code you can not extend the exsting K&T at all.

second thing is that that kind of connection K&T to Romex it must have junction box and I dont see one there so that is the other issue there.


It will be good time to yank them out and run new wires in there.

Merci,Marc

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Old 10-15-2008, 08:18 AM   #3
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Knob and Tube Splices


Looking at this, you might want to pull all new wire right about now. Has your house been insulated? If so this is a BIG fire hazard with k&t. In the nec you can't insulate around k&t, you can't modify ungrounded circuits, I think it was allowed a few years ago, but banned now...otherwise when it was allowed, you needed a junction box.
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Old 10-15-2008, 08:36 AM   #4
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Knob and Tube Splices


It also looks like it is just twisted and taped which is a big no no.
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Old 10-15-2008, 08:54 AM   #5
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Knob and Tube Splices


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It also looks like it is just twisted and taped which is a big no no.
TanzinCR, that's how Knob and Tube was wired; just twist the wires together and tape them. There were mostly long straight runs and you would just tap into the main runs along the way wherever you needed an outlet or a light.

I know of a place where there is still a ton of Knob and Tube wiring in the basement, all of which has been disconnected and replaced by conduit; however its fun to keep the old stuff there. A lot of people have never actually seen Knob and Tube wiring in person, even the electrician who wired up the new lights.
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Old 10-15-2008, 08:58 AM   #6
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Knob and Tube Splices


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It also looks like it is just twisted and taped which is a big no no.
Actually they are probably twisted and soldered and taped.
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Old 10-15-2008, 10:07 AM   #7
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Knob and Tube Splices


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TanzinCR, that's how Knob and Tube was wired; just twist the wires together and tape them. There were mostly long straight runs and you would just tap into the main runs along the way wherever you needed an outlet or a light.

Actually, as joed has already said, K&T was twisted, soldered, and then taped. I believe it was a five step process: Strip, twist, solder, rubber tape, friction tape. Talk about a solid connection! I doubt the splice in the OPs picture was soldered though. By the time the romex with thermoplastic insulation was available, K&T splicing was a lost art.
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Old 10-16-2008, 12:38 AM   #8
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Knob and Tube Splices


Thanks for the info and ideas.........

Most of the work was done by the previous owner 10 years ago. Yea, there is no insulation in the basement with the KT, we will look at upgrading here soon!
Gotta love old houses though, they don't build them like they used too.....
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Old 10-16-2008, 05:17 PM   #9
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Gotta love old houses though, they don't build them like they used too.....
They don't burn down like they used to either.
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:08 PM   #10
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Knob and Tube Splices


I remember years ago, connecting Romex to K&T. A special adapter was available. This adapter had a clamp for the Romex sheath and a bakelite cap with holes in it for the conductors to emerge.

In school we were taught how to make N&T splices.
As previously noted, the NT insulation was removed. The conductor was burnished. Then the 'tap' conductor was wound around the main five times. Solder paste and solder was applied.
Rubber tape was then applied to a thickness equal to that of the original insulation. The rubber tape was then protected with a cotton based, friction tape.

If my memory serves me right, this was known as a Western Union splice!

For sure, if this splice is not soldered, it would surely be a fire hazard.

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