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post #1 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 06:30 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm trying to fish cat6 in my finished basement ceiling, but the problem I'm having is that the basement ceiling joists are running perpendicular to my run. So my fish tape keeps getting caught between them.

This is a 30' run and I have access to unfinished basement on both ends (it is annoying to see the light at the end of the tunnel but have no way to reach it). Are there any other tools or tricks I could try instead of chopping up my ceiling?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 09:33 AM
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If you need to go through the joists, no easy way. Is there another possible path like behind some crown molding or baseboard?
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post #3 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 10:25 AM - Thread Starter
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I just need to go over them...so my bundle of cable would lay on top.
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post #4 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 11:10 AM
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There are telescoping rods that might do the trick. Not cheap though. And the 30' ones I have seen are about 7' collapsed.
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post #5 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 01:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdebord1 View Post

I just need to go over them...so my bundle of cable would lay on top.

As in, you can see over them? A toy crossbow with a string tied to the bolt can work... There's a pro product called the "cablecaster" that is essentially that. If you have enough space to throw something, a string tied to a tennis ball is the cheapest method. biggrin.gif

Telescoping rods, or the connectable fiberglass rods to span the distance are all good solutions.
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post #6 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 02:02 PM - Thread Starter
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I couldn't throw a tennis ball in this space...its tight between some ductwork. But I have plenty of room to maneuver something long since I'm feeding from a 800 sqft unfinished area.

I was considering feeding pvc with an elbow on the end pointing up. That wouldn't get caught, but the straight connectors might get snagged.
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post #7 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 03:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jautor View Post

A toy crossbow...
A friend of mine has used a toy bow and arrow, and a RC tank, among other things, to get pull cords across drop ceilings. Just gotta be creative.
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post #8 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 03:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdebord1 View Post

I was considering feeding pvc with an elbow on the end pointing up. That wouldn't get caught, but the straight connectors might get snagged.
Should be able to do it with PVC pipe. If you use the type with a bell on the end, you will eliminate the snagging problem in one direction. Tape the other side of the connection appropriately and you should be able to eliminate snags. FWIW you can always leave the PVC in the ceiling and use it as conduit.
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post #9 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 05:54 PM
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I normally use fiberglass rods for shorter runs.

Fish tape would be ideal for this situation. Bend the leading end up to 'ski jump' over the obstructions as you advance it. Fish tape can be steered, and fiberglass rods normally cannot; there are some fancy bendable ends for fiberglass fish stix (rods) from LSDI that allow some steering.

My HVAC ducts already have a bunch of low voltage and line voltage cables running along the top so I try to run my new LV cables next to it.

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post #10 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 06:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colm View Post

A friend of mine has used a toy bow and arrow, and a RC tank, among other things, to get pull cords across drop ceilings. Just gotta be creative.

RC monster trucks, especially with the big spongy tires, make an excellent rig to take cables across drop ceilings! Just don't go full throttle!

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post #11 of 17 Old 07-21-2013, 08:03 PM
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The screw together rods that come with these dryer vent cleaning kits are pretty stiff: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_3_6?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=dryer%20vent%20cleaning&sprefix=dryer+%2Caps%2C316
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post #12 of 17 Old 07-22-2013, 02:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olyteddy View Post

The screw together rods that come with these dryer vent cleaning kits are pretty stiff: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_3_6?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=dryer%20vent%20cleaning&sprefix=dryer+%2Caps%2C316

Tried that when fishing across the pipes, wires, and air ducts in a split foyer home. Just too flexible. Like Colm suggested, ended up using small diameter PVC water pipe with coax inside. Cable's connector was inside far end of pipe until it reached where it needed to go. When end of pipe reached destination fed required coax thru pipe.

Connected PVC sections with connectors and duct taped joints. Did not have an elbow on the end. Don't know how that would work. For a 30' run may have to nest small pipe inside a larger one part of the way, if smaller flexes too much. Removed pipe a section at a time, removing tape when I could reach a joint.
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post #13 of 17 Old 07-22-2013, 01:41 PM
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Put a 2 foot gentle curve on the end of the steel fish tape. Point the end 'up' as you advance it, and it will 'ski jump' over the tops of the joists.

Put a 6" curve on the tip, in the opposite direction, pointed down, to help avoid obstructions above.

General idea, second from left, but big curve probably not that much - more gentle:


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post #14 of 17 Old 07-22-2013, 03:51 PM
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One method I have used quite successfully is a jet line and an air compressor. You load the jetline inside a piece of 1/2 in.x 2 ft piece of conduit. Tie the end of the lines securely to the conduit and cover with a strip of tape. Take an air compressor and insert a blower nozzle inside the conduit seal with some wadding like paper towel and pull the trigger. Th jet line will fly through the open space. It may take a couple practice shots but they work.

Jet lines are available at any electrical hardware wholesaler and are deigned to blow though conduits where fishing takes too long or the run is more than 100ft. Jet lines are available up to 300ft.
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post #15 of 17 Old 09-16-2013, 10:25 AM
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Same crap with me. I tied cable to a PVC pipe (just use it then return it) and pushed it through.
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post #16 of 17 Old 09-16-2013, 03:24 PM
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Trained Ferrets. They can go anywhere.

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post #17 of 17 Old 09-16-2013, 06:27 PM
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Particularly if there is a prairie dog where you want them to go.
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