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high desert. small house.

Days 213-215: Boxing Out

Friday, 2/12
Brian installed more boxes and solved the electrical-box-wall-penetration conundrum.

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The [Harbor Freight single speed] oscillating tool is IDEAL for trimming tabs off electrical boxes and the Sch 80 PVC conduit male adapters we used for exterior wall penetrations.

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Not very deep 35 cu in fiberglass double gang box mounted in a shallow 2×4 wall for our bathroom switches.

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Juicy caulk doughnut behind the breaker panel before the conduit goes in.

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After seating the conduit (male adapter) in the breaker panel and tidying up.

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Breaker panel penetration as seen from the inside.

Saturday, 2/13
A beautiful day!  After a fulfilling day surrounded by coffee aroma, we got back to installing boxes.  We finished the kitchen area, installed the (mandatory) outdoor boxes and weatherized them, did most of the bathroom and started on the main room.

Location of the south facing outdoor box

Location of the south facing outdoor box.  One outlet is required at both the front and back of the house.

Outdoor box

Outdoor box – We opted for a strange-looking protrusion versus a box set into the wall.  Reasoning – protrusion requires a small wall penetration versus a box-sized hole in the wall and the insulation.

Sunday, 2/14
What a day, what a day.  Perfect weather and great progress. We installed all of the outlet and switch boxes and redid two of them – one had been installed too close to the ground and would likely have been a trim clearance issue and the other had been installed for the 1/4″ paneling when it should have been for 1/2″ paneling.

While working on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning, I found it difficult to breathe in the house.  Since we appear to be out of the wet, muddy winter, I decided it was time to vacuum.  That required moving the car, hooking up the inverter, dragging the giant extension cord and then voila, sucking up all the dust and dirt.  It feels MUCH better in there now.

We have to install an outdoor light, which oddly enough, is required by New Mexico code.  I think that is a silly requirement.  What if we didn’t want an outdoor light?  Anyway, we visited ACE to grab the smallest light we could find that still looked decent and the associated installation components.

The next step is installing the boxes for the fixtures, which requires a pre-step of removing their accursed sheetrock spacer nubs.  Then wire running time!

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Deep 23 cu in single gang nail on box. Higher box volume = easier to install wires in.  Especially in NM where code requires 6″ of conductor slack from the front edge of a box!

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