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Tricky Conduits

 
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Old 03-29-2015, 04:52 PM   #1
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Tricky Conduits


Every once in a while I run into a conduit that is an absolute nightmare to fish, last Friday was no exception.

Any long runs of sealed conduit I find it's fastest to blow a dart through.

EMT's fittings are so leaky that blowing a line through really doesn't work well. Therefor I opt to use an Ideal vinyl coated steel cable fish.

If I can't get it through I put a loop of wire on the end of the fish tape, send it as far as it will go, then take another fish tape, put a hook on it and send it down the other end and hope to hook it when I pull it out.

This time I have about a 120 foot run of 1-1/4", in the middle I'm guessing there are two back to back 90s separated by probably 15 feet. I get hung up in both directions.

Any tricks out there?
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:08 PM   #2
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Re: Tricky Conduits


Out of curiosity would it increase suction and CFM if I daisy chained three rigid shop vacs together in series?

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Old 03-29-2015, 05:36 PM   #3
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Re: Tricky Conduits


Nothing you probably haven't tried. If the fish won't go, you're stuck with blowing things through. Darts: suck from one end, blow from the other. Send a second one it to try to jar the first one loose. Use extremely light line - a few times I've sent sewing thread through. All sorts of jiggling and teasing the line to get it to slip past the burrs and whatever other crap is in there.

I've gotten to appreciate one building we work in, where you simply shove the fish in until it bumps the other side of the box at the other end.
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:38 PM   #4
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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Originally Posted by CarpenterSFO View Post
Nothing you probably haven't tried. If the fish won't go, you're stuck with blowing things through. Darts: suck from one end, blow from the other. Send a second one it to try to jar the first one loose. Use extremely light line - a few times I've sent sewing thread through. All sorts of jiggling and teasing the line to get it to slip past the burrs and whatever other crap is in there.

I've gotten to appreciate one building we work in, where you simply shove the fish in until it bumps the other side of the box at the other end.
Sewing thread is a great idea....I may even try braided fishing line.
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Old 03-29-2015, 05:52 PM   #5
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Re: Tricky Conduits


I find sandwich bags without the zipper tied to the string work best for sucking a string through 1" or less. On your 1-1/4 I'd use a plastic grocery bag.

Best pulling lube---baby powder.

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Old 03-29-2015, 06:18 PM   #6
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Re: Tricky Conduits


Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner10 View Post
Out of curiosity would it increase suction and CFM if I daisy chained three rigid shop vacs together in series?
I'm betting rigid vacs would work better than flexible vacs...
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That guy in video have mental issues plus eat hole turtle from some reason
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:38 PM   #7
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Re: Tricky Conduits


If I'm installing the conduit and suspect it might be tough to fish when finished, I run at least one line as I'm assembling it. Makes assembly a bit slower, but pulling is pretty much a breeze after that.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:40 PM   #8
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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If I'm installing the conduit and suspect it might be tough to fish when finished, I run at least one line as I'm assembling it. Makes assembly a bit slower, but pulling is pretty much a breeze after that.
That's really not going to help me this time...I didn't run the pipe the sparky did.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:42 PM   #9
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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Originally Posted by Tinstaafl View Post
If I'm installing the conduit and suspect it might be tough to fish when finished, I run at least one line as I'm assembling it. Makes assembly a bit slower, but pulling is pretty much a breeze after that.
I'm guessing the last installer wasn't that considerate...
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:50 PM   #10
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Re: Tricky Conduits


He sure wasn't, and I'm pretty sure he used all pre-fab 90's...so there is probably 20 joiners that leak air like a bastard.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:56 PM   #11
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Re: Tricky Conduits


Quote:
Originally Posted by Inner10 View Post
Out of curiosity would it increase suction and CFM if I daisy chained three rigid shop vacs together in series?
I think that would work if they were in parallel, not series...
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:35 PM   #12
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Re: Tricky Conduits


With sucking you're limited to 14.7 PSI which is 18 lbs, abs. max with a perfect vacuum, pushing on a 1-1/4" dia. plug. With leaks you'll never get there.

Use compressed air at whatever PSI and CFM to overcome the leaks and push some kind of made or bought shuttlecock.

Last edited by GettingBy; 03-29-2015 at 08:13 PM. Reason: math error
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:45 PM   #13
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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With sucking you're limited to 14.7 PSI which is 1.2 lbs pushing on a 1-1/4" dia. plug.

Use compressed air to push some kind of made or bought shuttlecock?
I have darts just not for 1-1/4"

In general it's hard to blow through EMT because it's so leaky.

I think I'l try CarpenterSFO's idea of sucking and blowing.
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:49 PM   #14
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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Originally Posted by Inner10 View Post
I have darts just not for 1-1/4"

In general it's hard to blow through EMT because it's so leaky.

I think I'l try CarpenterSFO's idea of sucking and blowing.
I think Bob's thin lightweight string idea is best.
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Old 03-29-2015, 08:21 PM   #15
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Re: Tricky Conduits


Grocery bag to make a parachute, tie braided fishing line then push with air compressor.
No shop vac can compare to 90 psi pushing the bag through.
How long is the run?

I once had a buried line in a parking lot. We though for sure it was broken.
Had the vac on it and couldn't feel any suction at all.
In last ditch effort I tuck taped an air hose to it. We had 120psi on it wen it finally shot the grocery bag out the other end along with a 20' fountain of water.
I was soaked but still happy that we didn't have to cut new asphalt.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:05 AM   #16
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Re: Tricky Conduits


A new fish tape can work wonders. A small amount of rust and a few small kinks in the tape can cause trouble.

On pipe larger than 1" I also put 2 -45* bends near the head to make the tape fill the conduit.

You may also want to try a 1/4 inch tape instead of the stock 1/8
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:10 AM   #17
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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No shop vac can compare to 90 psi pushing the bag through.
That's what I thought but there is a system designed for this that advertises 3 PSI, 300 CFM and it takes 3 kw.
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Old 03-31-2015, 02:33 PM   #18
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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A new fish tape can work wonders. A small amount of rust and a few small kinks in the tape can cause trouble.

On pipe larger than 1" I also put 2 -45* bends near the head to make the tape fill the conduit.

You may also want to try a 1/4 inch tape instead of the stock 1/8
I was using an Ideal Zoom which is the best fish tape I've ever used for conduits.

Bob wins, I attached fishing line to a dart and blew it through with a compressor in about 10 seconds. Only part that sucks is it was 20 dollar fishing line lol.
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Old 03-31-2015, 06:53 PM   #19
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Re: Tricky Conduits


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I was using an Ideal Zoom which is the best fish tape I've ever used for conduits.

Bob wins, I attached fishing line to a dart and blew it through with a compressor in about 10 seconds. Only part that sucks is it was 20 dollar fishing line lol.
Seems like a standard C.T.-style multi-contributor solution. Glad it worked. I'll trade $20 for an hour less cursing any time.
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:09 PM   #20
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Re: Tricky Conduits


I have zero knowledge in this area.

But a few months back, my sparky was talking about a similar issue.

H used the plug type sponges. put three in series , like 2 feet apart.
If one leaked the others would seal . ( suck and blow , sounds right )

Not sure if it makes and sense to somebody who has done it.

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