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#620264 05/24/18 09:11 PM
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ABLE1 Offline OP
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Hello all,

I have a customer that is setting up a new office space. Place is presently gutted out and being reconfigured
to the new office plan. I have been asked to prep rough in and move the existing phone system and
computer network from old office space.

Small office five(5) phones and network jacks. Not a big deal, until where they desire to have the head end.

There is a small slot in the lunch room where the refrigerator is to fit. They want to have everything placed on the
wall and then push the refrigerator in place making it impossible to work on anything unless the refrigerator is
unplugged and pulled out.

The mentality is it will not have to be accessed that often and should not be a problem. Should not be a problem
since it is on wheels. When I objected I was asked WHY it is a problem?? I came up with a number
of WHY'S from ventilation, lack of access and it being plain wrong for a new build out. But they still don't
understand. I suggested that since the walls are open and at this time it would be simple to just add a
small closet about 14" deep with doors. But the comment was the closet would be wasted space.

How do you get someone to understand that having accessible wall space for the head-end infrastructure is an
important part of any office space?? That jamming it into a small space beside a refrigerator is just plain wrong. banghead

Any input appreciated. anyone

Thanks,

Les

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Cite the National Electrical Code:

110.12. Mechanical Execution of Work. "Electrical equipment shall be installed in a neat and workmanlike manner." Why is the NEC so vague on this? Well, it’s hard to quantify and describe something like that. The Code is basically giving the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) the power to reject work that doesn’t meet industry standards. It’s a situation where "everyone knows the rules," and the AHJ can make sure those rules get followed. One reason contractors back such language is they can use this rule to level the competitive playing field against "fly by night outfits" that do sloppy work. The costs associated with work that isn’t "neat and workmanlike" are enormous—a small investment in upfront costs saves the customer big money over the life of the equipment. One requirement many people often overlook is that of filling unused openings in enclosures—the omission of which is potentially lethal.

10.13. Mounting and Cooling of Equipment. This requirement is always in dispute, it seems. Cramming equipment into an overcrowded arrangement to maximize revenue per square foot sounds like a really good idea until that equipment starts failing left and right, or the whole place just burns down.

110.26. Spaces about electrical equipment (600V or less)
. Most people wrongly assume working clearances (depth of working space) are three feet. Under some circumstances, the NEC requires them to be more. Beyond simply safety, good engineering or maintenance practices may require more still. Don’t assume just because you have 2 feet and 10 inches you are "good enough" or if you have 3 feet 2 inches you must fill in that 2 inches so you don’t exceed the Code. Also, the Code has minimums for the width and height of working spaces. These widths are outdated, as they are based on an earlier era of less "girth endowed" workers. Use common sense, with safety as your goal.

I think you have the idea


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Hi Dean,

Thanks for that input. A I was driving while on the phone and being told where they wanted it and
me saying it is just wrong. And then being asked WHY I could not get the thought of the NEC.

I have never been placed in such a position and since I was not getting anywhere at all and at my
age i don't need any hassles I ended up tell him that he needs to find someone else to do the job.

At this point, I think I will wright a polite letter and explain the NEC. Who knows, maybe it will clear thing up.

Again thanks for the input.

Les

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I really don't think the NEC comes into play here, at least to the extent that anybody cares. Clearances should attach to LV equipment like KSUs and patch panels but I have never seen an inspector even look at it least of all care. But anybody that wants to do something like you describe and can't understand why it would be a problem really needs to have their head examined. Ignorant, stupid- words can't describe what they are. Probably typical of the current generation. If they are unwavering I wouldn't have anything to do with the job. Yes, write a polite letter to explain that you are booked for the next 12 months. Let them find an IT guy to handle it.

-Hal


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Originally Posted by ABLE1
...move the existing phone system and
computer network from old office space.

They want to have everything placed on the wall and then push the refrigerator in place making it impossible to work on anything unless the refrigerator is
unplugged and pulled out.

Originally Posted by hbiss
I really don't think the NEC comes into play here, at least to the extent that anybody cares.
-Hal
Hal, maybe the inspectors in your area would allow equipment installed like this, but the AHJ wouldn't allow it here.

If ABLE1 wishes not to do the install in the location requested, this is an easy out.



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Dean & Hal,

To add some clarity, the space beside the refrigerator is at best 9" wide. The other locations that were
bantered around were above the drop ceiling, outside the office in the stairwell, under some counter
space. Wanting it to be hidden and out of site. All of which I said NO.

As what gathered, was they did not have wall space available for the stuff. And besides it will RARELY
need to be accessed so WHY can't it go there??

The floor plans drawn up by their architect has the placement of desk, file cabinets, windows and doors
to scale. As most all architect plans are laid out nice and pretty. Nobody ever thinks about the infrastructure
of the technology that needs to be installed.

"Oh, I only want to see a wall plate jack on the wall so I can plug my computer to the unseen network/internet
so I can do my job." Some people are just turned off by the viewing of the head end. So I suggested adding
a narrow closet with a couple of doors so it can't be seen. "But it is just wasted space!!" was the comment.

I have another customer that wants me to install equipment that gets added to their network that is stuffed on the floor
under their desk. You have to actually lay on the floor to make connection to the router or switch.
I complain but what else can I do?? I would like to just rip it all out and take up some used wall space and do it
right. If I did, number one I would get screamed at because they can't use that wall for other storage and
number two, never get paid. BTW the owner that sits at the desk is constantly kicking the router and switch
and disconnecting various network equipment. That when the equipment I installed I get a call that "your NVR"
isn't working!!! I have to go in and figure out why, find the loose jack, plug it in, (5 minutes) and send a bill
for an hour service call. Some would say, what's your problem?? You are getting paid!! Yes, but it doesn't
account for the added stress that I don't need.

I am sure you guys have seen the piles and piles crap that is out there and it has never been seen by
any AHJ since the AHJ was never there after the stuff was crammed under a desk, above a ceiling, in a broom
closet, or much much worse.

This project is totally different. It is basically a raw space. New floor plan with NO consideration or plan for
the infrastructure, other than they don't want to see it. The AHJ will not blink an eye, since the refrigerator
probably won't be there when he does his walk through. And if it is, my guess is that he won't notice because
you can see it.

The sad part is that this is for the owner of the building(s) that they rent/lease out, and designs and builds
leased spaces for their tenants in their owned buildings. That I have been working with for 20 years or so.

At this point I have my rough draft of my "nice letter" spelling out the NEC points. Need to add some polish.
I am not sending to try and win the project. More to point of explaining why in should not go as they want
beside the refrigerator. If they change there mind and still want me to do the job I will, otherwise
I am comfortable.

Thanks again for the input.

Les










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Les,

Installing equipment (or wiring backboards above the ceiling grid are against the NEC also.

I had a customer once that wanted their telephone and voice mail system installed in an
un-insulated attic space of a lumber mill. I told "You just spent $50,000 on this and your
warranty will not cover any failures of the equipment due to equipment installed in direct
sunlight, high humidity, dust, heat, strong magnetic fields, or radio frequency interference."

When asked where I thought it could be installed...
"Any climate where an average office person can work".

Also I informed them of power requirements: I need a isolated, dedicated,105-125VAC,
15A circuit within 5 feet and that no other equipment can be connected to the circuit.





Dean
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ABLE1 Offline OP
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Dean,

I was on a project where there was a room built in the attic space for HVAC equipment. I was air conditioned.
The challenge was that the only access was through a hatch, had to step across some duct work with a small
cat walk about 20 feet or so, just to get the the insulated door. PITA!!

Any chance you can site chapter and verse on the "Installing equipment (or wiring backboards above the ceiling grid"??

Thanks!!

Les

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Les,
As an "all around tech guy" you really need to learn the NEC. If you don't have the current NFPA 70 (2017) you really should get it.

There are a multitude of code applications that are required to be followed for above grid installations:

300.11 Securing and Supporting
(A) Secure in Place
(B) Wiring Systems Installed Above Suspended Ceilings


800.18 Installation of Equipment Communications equipment
must be listed [800.170] and must be installed in accordance
with manufacturer’s instructions [110.3(B)].

110.3(B) Installation and Use.
Listed or labelled equipment shall be installed and
use in accordance with any instructions included in the listing or labeling.

90.5(A) Mandatory Rules. Mandatory rules of this Code are those that identify actions
that are specifically required or prohibited and are characterized by the use of the terms shall or shall not.


Dean
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