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Broomstick

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Hi
i have an old stone cottage. I need to do some surface re-wiring but I do not like plastic trunking. Could I use copper piping for the wires as I feel this would make a good feature. Would this be safe.?
 
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Metal conduit is perfectly safe so as long as it's properly installed I don't see a problem. You may struggle to get fittings for it to get it to fit to boxes
 
P

poppypiesdad

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  • #3
Galvanised not a easy option for that industrial look , or even paint it with copper paint ?

Jamie
 
A

AP Electrical

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  • #4
Metal conduit is perfectly safe so as long as it's properly installed I don't see a problem. You may struggle to get fittings for it to get it to fit to boxes
you can get 15mm tank connectors to connect back boxes but its a right old headache and i think the only way to make look neat is to solder joints rather than compression joints
 

Strima

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I think plastic compression joints may look a bit odd...
 
A

AP Electrical

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Theres some great paint products about now and i reckon if you did it in white plastic conduit then primed it well you could get a copper affect paint for it look for metal kote paints (think thats the name)
 

D Skelton

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Have you considered using mineral?

Cables contained within exposed copper but all in one. No need for joins and no need for special bending tools. IMHO it would look way better than using plumbing pipe and joins for electrical equipment!
 
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pjcomp

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Have you considered using mineral?
ANd the latest price of MICC is .... ? And if you don't terminate properly (not a DIYer job) the while lot shorts out. Nice idea, but surely only for deep-pocket specialists.

PJ
 

D Skelton

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ANd the latest price of MICC is .... ?
Only about £5-6 per meter at the most expensive suppliers. Not exactly a bank breaking amount of money for a little surface wiring.

And if you don't terminate properly (not a DIYer job) the while lot shorts out. Nice idea, but surely only for deep-pocket specialists
For a start, a DIYer shouldn't be touching electrics in the first place and I'd like to think anyone calling themselves an electrician should be able to properly terminate mineral cable. It's not exactly hard is it, just more time consuming than working with other types of cable.

I only mentioned it coz the OP seemed like he wanted a proper and safe job doing that looks the part too. IMHO, mineral is the only way to go :)
 
R

RISElectrical

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  • #13
MICC or stainless steel conduit maybe?
 

Des 56

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Hi
i have an old stone cottage. I need to do some surface re-wiring but I do not like plastic trunking. Could I use copper piping for the wires as I feel this would make a good feature. Would this be safe.?
Copper pipes a good feature :eek: I am absolutely amazed by that decision,but each to their own I suppose


You would be well advised (in my opinion) to consider mineral as D Skelton suggested
Considerations about poorly terminated ends would only arise if it was done without experience
It would mean paying a spark with the skills,but surely,if aesthetics are that important,then it would be a thousand times better
 
S

Silly Sausage

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  • #15
Copper pipes a good feature :eek: I am absolutely amazed by that decision,but each to their own I suppose


You would be well advised (in my opinion) to consider mineral as D Skelton suggested
Make for a good CPC though!

Polished & lacquered mineral would look the part.
 
A

Adam W

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  • #16
I was thinking of MI as well. If the customer can afford to be picky about the look they can afford MI. The advantages being MI is a 'recognised' wiring method as opposed to using plumbing pipe as conduit, and it's going to be much easier and neater to dress around corners, irregular angles etc.
 

telectrix

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commonly known as pyro cable. it's got it's own copper sheath/outer covering. you can get it also with orange plastic coating, but you don't want that!.
 
S

Silly Sausage

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  • #21
Here's some being terminated, not a job for an amateur!
It would be about 8mm diameter for your use.
MICC.jpg
 
G

Guest55

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  • #22
Its fairly certain that the OP isnt going to use a cable type that he doesnt know how to terminate.
And a £6 a metre pyro will be the most expensive option.
Go for the copper pipe install is what i say , nice to see a bit of imagination.
 
G

Guest55

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  • #25
I disagree. I feel 'a bit of imagination' is the hallmark of the DIYer, like running shed supplies in T&E in hose pipe.
Er , ok.
Can a skilled tradesman use their imagination without being labelled a diy'er ?
bit of a daft statement tbh.

:-/
 
A

Adam W

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  • #27
Er , ok.
Can a skilled tradesman use their imagination without being labelled a diy'er ?
bit of a daft statement tbh.

:-/
It's not a 'bit of a daft statement' at all. Firstly I presented it as my opinion rather than a statement of fact, and secondly ingenious solutions to otherwise simple electrical jobs are what DIYers tend to do. There's no need to leave the next electrician scratching his head trying to figure out what's been lashed together because the previous installer fancied being a bit different, eg why would you use plumbing pipe when there is a perfectly good solution available?
You might be able to run the pipes around the property, you might be able to get them to fit in the boxes, but how do you add inspection bends in accordance with the regs? Would you try making your own couplers, or solder the ends together like a plumber?
Then you've got the problems associated with having done something nobody's expecting, like when it comes to altering a circuit - the electrician will be looking for something which looks like electrical wiring, not plumbing. Likewise if the central heating needs replacing and the plumber tells his apprentice to 'rip out all the pipework'.

So I do think it's better to install circuits 'by the book' - letting your imagination run wild seems to be asking for trouble.
 

Des 56

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Ok If its going to be copper pipe,he may as well try polishing the t--d, so to speak
At least use mini bore and some singles:D
 
G

Guest55

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  • #29
It's not a 'bit of a daft statement' at all. Firstly I presented it as my opinion rather than a statement of fact, and secondly ingenious solutions to otherwise simple electrical jobs are what DIYers tend to do. There's no need to leave the next electrician scratching his head trying to figure out what's been lashed together because the previous installer fancied being a bit different, eg why would you use plumbing pipe when there is a perfectly good solution available?
You might be able to run the pipes around the property, you might be able to get them to fit in the boxes, but how do you add inspection bends in accordance with the regs? Would you try making your own couplers, or solder the ends together like a plumber?
Then you've got the problems associated with having done something nobody's expecting, like when it comes to altering a circuit - the electrician will be looking for something which looks like electrical wiring, not plumbing. Likewise if the central heating needs replacing and the plumber tells his apprentice to 'rip out all the pipework'.

So I do think it's better to install circuits 'by the book' - letting your imagination run wild seems to be asking for trouble.
Have you any idea how dull and tedious that post was ?
good grief man , write an essay why dont you.
 
A

AP Electrical

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  • #30
Seen two or three runs in 15 mm copper all in one village as it happens not installed by myself though, anyhow if it what's the customer wand then so be it and as it happens it didn't look to bad. Any electrician should be able to figure out what's been done as it only like a steel conduit run, as for inspection bends all the install I'd seen were in cottages as is the op so runs can be kept straight in most cases.
 

D Skelton

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Have you any idea how dull and tedious that post was ?
good grief man , write an essay why dont you.
Dull and tedious his post may have seemed to you, I don't know, I can't comment? However, do you not think he makes at least a couple of fair points?

I was going to mention before he beat me to it about the plumber asking his apprentice to take a grinder to all the 'old' pipework! Very doubtful it would ever happen but still, if it did, it would be a rather 'shocking' situation :D
 

Marvo

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I can certainly give you some pointers. My house is kinda like a beach house and there's no ceiling on the ground floor so when I extended it I recycled all the old copper pipe as conduit. There's a few things that make your life easier;


  • When you cut the copper pipe run a deburring tool around the inside of the cut to stop it chaffing the cabling.
  • I used 22mm copper pipe with solder type fittings but I used 2 very small pop rivets to secure the joints of elbows and couplings. This gives good continuity to the entire run of copper.
  • You can use plumbing elbows but they're tight radius, you must pull the cable through as you assemble the copper conduit. If you go to a refrigeration wholesalers you can get long radius copper refrigeration bends, they're imperial sizes but you can make them fit plumbing pipe by using a swageing kit.
Here's some pics of my handywork;

conduit1.jpg


conduit 2.jpg

curtain rail1.jpg

roll holder1.jpg

This is the swaging tool and deburring tool I used;

post-snapondeburring.jpg

DSCN3513.JPG
 
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S

Swicade

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  • #34
Whilst a good idea MICC can look terrible if not done by someone with good skills to dress it back let alone making it off.

Tbh the only thing wrong with using copper pipe as a substitute conduit is the fact it's it's just something we dont usualy do.... nothing more than that.

At times it is good to think outside of our small boxes....admittedly not always though.
 
E

Engineer54

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  • #35
read somewere conduit in HOUSE OF COMMONS is copper
Indeed the House of Commons does have extensive copper conduit installations... The conduit (brass alloy) box fittings and couplers are soldered to the copper conduit... Couplers also come in dual soldered/screw configuration.

In this particular instance though, MICC cable is ideal for keeping an old cottage in a oldie world setting, whilst out performing any other cabling system. What's more, installed correctly, it'll probably out last the cottage. Just don't ask a electrical trainee DI to install it!!.... lol!!
 
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