My house wiring odyssey

beelzerob

Senior Member
I bought my house already built. I am a huge fan of recessed lighting. My electrician came in and installed about 20 lights in the first floor. I had to patch the notches and re-paint but it was worth all the hard work, time and mess. So don't count your ability to get things in to the first floor ceiling!

Neil

p.s. Pegboard :( Just kidding...

Hehe...well, I said "reasonably", which means no damage. If you start talking opening up drywall, then everything is easy! :D

One of the things I'm happiest about is that our walls will have no texturing. Our last house had "hock and trowel", which is supposedly fancy, but just meant that any repairs to the drywall would then require a texturing expert to come in and make it match again. With no texturing, you'd just put the drywall patch in, mud it, sand it, and paint, and it's good as new! That's comforting.

I don't know about pegboard....but someone mentioned skipping drywall and just going MDF instead. That's an interesting idea, because once it's painted, would I really even know? And MDF would support things directly, as opposed to sheetrock which would require anchors. We'll see...I'd be happy if I can just figure out how to create a wall with a doorway and put it up in the basement...even that would be a huge first step.
 

SnyperBob

Active Member
Wiring room....oh ya.....that. :( That's one of those things that I've not even begun to consider how to do, I think out of sheer terror. That will most likely be its own little odyssey, and its own post as I try to figure out how the heck to organize all that stuff. I'm not sure yet if I'm going to go ghetto "screw it to the wall" first, and then nice/organized after I've figured out a system, or try to afford panels right off the bat. Dunno on that one, but I can't wait to see pictures of it too! :D


Haha, you're install is looking very good. I'm at the 'wiring closet' stage. I have all the wires run, and everytime I go to the basement and see my wiring closet area, I just shake my head. So far I'm on the 'terminate if needed' basis. I dread having to spend days terminating cat5, cat6 and RG6's until my fingers are numb.....

I didn't want to spend hundreds of dollars on keystones to terminate everything in every room, so I just terminated cable TV and one cat5e for now. I bought a nice labeller and just make labels indicating what all is hidden in the walls. Stick it right to the plate cover, and I'm set for now. No guesswork as to what I still can use, etc...

There's the million dollar question. Why are keystones so damn expensive?
 

Ranger Digital

Active Member
beeze, i think you are wise to for go the hdmi and run cat5's. that can ALWAYS run hdmi later (over cat5). Who knows what new technology will come out later and HDMI may be obsolete. Who knows. Likely mulitple cat5's will never go out of style. HDMI cabling may be of use once it can be field terminated.
 

heffneil

Active Member
All of the above is true. A couple things: Displayport is supposedly the future. Who knows? I thought I was set when I had component in on my receiver with digital audio inputs either coax or optical. Boy was I wrong. I don't know how long HDMI will last but it sure is convenient. MDF might not be a bad idea since you can screw things to it anywhere you want. Patching it would be virtually impossible. What about plywood painted black? Its not quite as heavy and might hold up easier. Plus you could drive screws without pre-drilling. Try screwing in to MDF without a hole and the screw will walk all over the place. What is actually going down there? Maybe a rack system is the way to go?

Neil
 

beelzerob

Senior Member
MDF might not be a bad idea since you can screw things to it anywhere you want. Patching it would be virtually impossible. What about plywood painted black? Its not quite as heavy and might hold up easier. Plus you could drive screws without pre-drilling. Try screwing in to MDF without a hole and the screw will walk all over the place. What is actually going down there? Maybe a rack system is the way to go?

Neil

*shrug*

The only thing I do know about the wiring room is where the wall and door will be. So I think probably before I do anything else, what I'm going to do is frame in that, and get the wire actually through those bare walls and into the room. Then I can start thinking about layout.

I don't have any particular love for MDF...plywood works just as good for me. I can see painting it just for the small aesthetic boost. What is the lure of sheetrock then for anyone...is it just for fire safety? Ease of patching?

I don't really see needing a rack...oh, I'd probably take one if I could get it cheap, because I have the autopatch which is rackmounted, and I have an HTPC case which can take a rack mount front panel. But until I can secure that "cheap" part, I'll probably just put them on shelves I can easily access from front and back. I think the first couple months if not years of the wiring room are going to look very ghetto.
 

beelzerob

Senior Member
Well, I made my perhaps final addition to the first post, 'cause I be done! At least, as done as I can be at this point. Now it's just sit back, relax, and let the sheetrockers and insulators hide all our hard work, and maybe destroy a wire or two.

Anyone has any questions, lemme know...the goal of this thread is to help (and early on, I think it was therapy for me too... :) )
 

beelzerob

Senior Member
Here's the totals:

22/4: 5500
14/4: 1500
Cat5e: 6000
Cat6: 1500
RG59: 4000
RG6: 2000
22/4 Firewire: 500

Here's the breakdown:

22/4, 3000 ft, stranded, White
22/4, 2000 ft, stranded, Brown
14/4, 1500 ft, high strand count, Orange
Cat5e, 1500 ft, solid, Yellow
Cat5e, 1000 ft, solid, White
Cat5e, 1000 ft, solid, Grey
Cat5e, 2500 ft, solid, Orange
Cat6, 1500 ft, solid, Blue
RG59, 3500 ft, solid copper core, "precision video" rated w/copper braid, Black, in 3 X 500' and 2 X 1000' boxes.
RG6QS, 2000 ft, solid copper core, 3 Ghz rated, White.

Additional ordered later:
22/4, 500 ft, stranded, orange
RG59, 500 ft, black

I ran out of everything except orange Cat5e, the RG6, and Cat6. It's kinda weird, I ended up with a LOT more Cat6 than I would have thought. I'm thinking part of the problem was I may have been counting a cat6 wire for each tv, as well as for a PC location in each room, and in most rooms I just ended up co-locating TV and PC with 1 cat6. Oh well, at least my patch cables will be high quality....
 

felixrosbergen

Senior Member
Congrats to beelzerob....one odessy over..

Let'a get started on the next thread....'termination'..one mans job another man's oddessy...

I guess you need to start planning the wiring closet now....what's it going to be...patch panels in a 19" rack??
 

DJK

Member
Man, what a great writeup.

Please continue as you terminate since it's great to learn ideas from other experiences (and I'm a month behind you ;) ). I think that you've got a lot to be proud of and all the hard work is going to pay off for years and years.

No doubt that cat 5e and conduit is the way to go to future proof. I think about state of the art 10 years ago (I think it was s video, and maybe the start of composite). Who know's what it's going to be 10 years from now.
 

beelzerob

Senior Member
Congrats to beelzerob....one odessy over..

Let'a get started on the next thread....'termination'..one mans job another man's oddessy...

I guess you need to start planning the wiring closet now....what's it going to be...patch panels in a 19" rack??

Well, termination won't begin in earnest until the wiring room has a plan...and so far, I don't have anything more planned for that than walls...really just 1 wall.

In a few threads, the discussion of cans came up, and some suggested that if you don't need cans to make your security system secure, then you might just dispense with them altogether. I may go in that direction...surface mounted on plywood ain't pretty, but BOY is it cheaper! ;)

The wiring room will be another journey...but also another thread. Heh.
 

beelzerob

Senior Member
No doubt that cat 5e and conduit is the way to go to future proof. I think about state of the art 10 years ago (I think it was s video, and maybe the start of composite). Who know's what it's going to be 10 years from now.

If I had to guess...it'd be wireless. :) Hopefully I can then harvest this copper investment and sell it for scrap. ;)
 

Herdfan

Active Member
some suggested that if you don't need cans to make your security system secure, then you might just dispense with them altogether. I may go in that direction...surface mounted on plywood ain't pretty, but BOY is it cheaper! :)

I did both. All my phone and LAN are in a Leviton 42" enclosure, but my coax is mounted on painted plywood. Between 4 incoming satellite lines and 1 CATV line (Internet, no DSL :( ), and somewhere around 14 runs out of the multiswitch, there is just too much coax to try to cram in a can. Plus, in the 2.5 years I have lived here, the board has been reworked almost completely twice. Once when I upgraded the the new DirecTV 5lnb dish, and again when I went from 2 multiswitches to a single 16 output powered switch. So having everything on a board was nice.

Of course, YMMV B)
 

AceCannon

Active Member
Congrats to beelzerob....one odessy over..

Let'a get started on the next thread....'termination'..one mans job another man's oddessy...

I guess you need to start planning the wiring closet now....what's it going to be...patch panels in a 19" rack??

(Shamelessly reviving this thread)

We are just breaking ground on our custom house. . . But my plan was to plywood-surface mount the security system and rack mount most everything else (in a 58" x 84" wiring closet). Here is a thread showing the two racks I found locally on Craigslist for $75 apiece.
 

beelzerob

Senior Member
Well, I can safely say there will be no complete plan of how to terminate or route the wires...at least, not at first. As with everything I do, I just want to get it working, and then down the road I'll worry about making it look pretty. Maybe in the meantime I can find some cheapo racks like Ace did, but that's reaaaally unlikely given our small town.

I'm probably going to start out with some simple 2 X 4 work benches just to set stuff on while I arrange everything else, but so that we can get stuff working in the interim.


By the way, I had to cancel my comcast account due to our move, so the pics from this thread may go bye-bye. Oh well. It's still a good story. ;)
 
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