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Old 01-08-2009, 04:54 PM   #1
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NMB outer jacket too thin


It is my opinion that the outer jacket on the NMB cables (Romex) are too thin.
I know the cable is easier to pull and work with than the old stuff, but I find that the jacket is a lot more susceptible to abrasion, cuts, etc.
I just finished installing a receptacle (complete replacement of old).
I used a plastic box with 12/2 NMB (Romex brand).
In pulling the cable through the opening in the box, and having to insert and remove the entire box a few times until it fit into the old hole, I noticed a slight nick in the outer jacket of the cable.
I didn't need to replace, since the nick didn't go all the way through, so I just applied a few wraps of 3m Super 88 tape to the area that gets clamped into the box.

This wasn't the only time I have had this sort of thing happen, and it is a lot more likely in old work than in new.
I think that next time I buy a roll of NMB, I'll look for a brand with a thicker jacket; or should I go back to using MC, or maybe conduit<g>

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Old 01-08-2009, 05:00 PM   #2
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Originally Posted by KE2KB View Post
It is my opinion that the outer jacket on the NMB cables (Romex) are too thin.
I know the cable is easier to pull and work with than the old stuff, but I find that the jacket is a lot more susceptible to abrasion, cuts, etc.
I just finished installing a receptacle (complete replacement of old).
I used a plastic box with 12/2 NMB (Romex brand).
In pulling the cable through the opening in the box, and having to insert and remove the entire box a few times until it fit into the old hole, I noticed a slight nick in the outer jacket of the cable.
I didn't need to replace, since the nick didn't go all the way through, so I just applied a few wraps of 3m Super 88 tape to the area that gets clamped into the box.

This wasn't the only time I have had this sort of thing happen, and it is a lot more likely in old work than in new.
I think that next time I buy a roll of NMB, I'll look for a brand with a thicker jacket; or should I go back to using MC, or maybe conduit<g>
Never had a problem, so you sure not not just being rammy with it?

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Old 01-08-2009, 05:40 PM   #3
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Never had a problem, so you sure not not just being rammy with it?
That could be. It's an old house, and I had to open up the hole for the box since the new plastic one was a bit larger than the old metallic one.
I should have fit-tested the box before pulling, and especially before inserting the NMB into the new box, but I thought it would just fit.

I just did some "testing" with another plastic box and a piece of 12/2 NMB, and found that it's very difficult to really tear the outer jacket on the plastic box. So, I'm probably making a mountain out of a mole hill.
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Old 01-08-2009, 08:51 PM   #4
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Originally Posted by KE2KB View Post
That could be. It's an old house, and I had to open up the hole for the box since the new plastic one was a bit larger than the old metallic one.
I should have fit-tested the box before pulling, and especially before inserting the NMB into the new box, but I thought it would just fit.

I just did some "testing" with another plastic box and a piece of 12/2 NMB, and found that it's very difficult to really tear the outer jacket on the plastic box. So, I'm probably making a mountain out of a mole hill.

Avoid that simpull crap. Its a waste. It has thin insulation on the sheath as well.
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:33 PM   #5
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Avoid that simpull crap. Its a waste. It has thin insulation on the sheath as well.
What are you referring to as simpull?
The sheath is what I am talking about. I do understand that the newer THHN insulation is thinner, but is better than the old; higher temp rating, and resists nicks better.

Do you know of something better? I don't think Home Depot, or any DIY store has anything else.
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:42 PM   #6
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Avoid that simpull crap. Its a waste. It has thin insulation on the sheath as well.
Why do you call it crap?
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:42 PM   #7
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Originally Posted by KE2KB View Post
What are you referring to as simpull?
The sheath is what I am talking about. I do understand that the newer THHN insulation is thinner, but is better than the old; higher temp rating, and resists nicks better.

Do you know of something better? I don't think Home Depot, or any DIY store has anything else.

I think its southwire who makes it, simpull is a special sheath designed to pull easier. To me, it makes no difference.
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:43 PM   #8
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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I think its southwire who makes it, simpull is a special sheath designed to pull easier. To me, it makes no difference.
Me neither, but I drill my holes in a straight line.
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Old 01-08-2009, 10:47 PM   #9
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Oil is still expensive and PVC comes from oil.
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Old 01-09-2009, 11:27 AM   #10
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NMB outer jacket too thin


Is it my imagination, or did the cost of a 250ft roll of 12/2 Romex (simpull) come down significantly over the past few months?

I am fairly sure that the last roll I bought from HD cost me $72, while the current price listed online is $46.
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Old 01-09-2009, 11:36 AM   #11
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Originally Posted by KE2KB View Post
Is it my imagination, or did the cost of a 250ft roll of 12/2 Romex (simpull) come down significantly over the past few months?

I am fairly sure that the last roll I bought from HD cost me $72, while the current price listed online is $46.
Yes. Welcome to the upside of a recession. I just bought a 250' roll of 10/3 for $75 off of CL.
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Old 01-09-2009, 11:37 AM   #12
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NMB outer jacket too thin


Maybe I should stock up, then re-sell on Ebay when the price goes back up<g>
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Old 01-09-2009, 12:24 PM   #13
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NMB outer jacket too thin


Ok, I got to tell you, this thread fits just right for a call I did this morning. Guy wants some lights put up in his garage. Says he has the lights and wire. I get there, and he has the new lights, but a roll of 12-2 that must be 30 years old! It has a black sheath, and is NM, not NM-B. I say I don't really want to use it because it doesn't have the -B. But he insists, so I figure since the lights are cord connected shop lights and not hardwired, what the hell. Well, it was like wrestling an aligator to get the twists out of it. When it can time to strip it... good luck. I got to the panel and had to strip about 18". Nearly cut my thumb off. That is some tough stuff. I would have loved to have used some Simpull. I won't do that again. Simpull anyday. Nothing crap about it, it's all in the install.
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Old 01-09-2009, 12:47 PM   #14
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NMB outer jacket too thin


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Originally Posted by InPhase277 View Post
Ok, I got to tell you, this thread fits just right for a call I did this morning. Guy wants some lights put up in his garage. Says he has the lights and wire. I get there, and he has the new lights, but a roll of 12-2 that must be 30 years old! It has a black sheath, and is NM, not NM-B. I say I don't really want to use it because it doesn't have the -B. But he insists, so I figure since the lights are cord connected shop lights and not hardwired, what the hell. Well, it was like wrestling an aligator to get the twists out of it. When it can time to strip it... good luck. I got to the panel and had to strip about 18". Nearly cut my thumb off. That is some tough stuff. I would have loved to have used some Simpull. I won't do that again. Simpull anyday. Nothing crap about it, it's all in the install.

I don't know, I have gotten simpull and then have not. They seem the same. Simpull is a little slicker. Yeah, that old nm was tough!
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Old 01-09-2009, 02:28 PM   #15
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NMB outer jacket too thin


I have some of that old NM. It's almost as hard to strip as UF. Now that (UF) was the biggest nightmare of yester-year; even moreso than trying to cut the sheath of BX without the proper cutting tool. The new UF is much better, IMO.

I may have gripes about the thinner jacket on the new NMB, but I love it when it comes to stripping the outer jacket. No need to buy the more expensive Klein NMB stripper ($20) with the NMB stripper, I got the $11 one (also Klein) that strips just the wire, and it works great on the new THHN insulation.

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