Buying a newly built house, and my structured wiring is a rat's nest... - AVS Forum
Home A/V Distribution > Buying a newly built house, and my structured wiring is a rat's nest...
Willki's Avatar Willki 12:56 PM 11-20-2013
I've been reading for a few years, but this is my first post in a long while.

Apparently, this is what passes for "OK". I'm pretty sure that they should have put a patch panel in and not terminated the Network cables with RJ45 Jacks, but I can't find anything to support this before I rip into people. They already tried to get out without putting in an amplifier, despite the fact we added 7 CATV outlets, along with 11 ethernet ports. I'm at the point where I've got a pretty decent idea of what needs to be done:
  • Replace cabinet with 42" Structured wiring enclosure.
  • Install patch panel and transfer existing infrastructure into new enclosure.
  • Remove RJ45 cables and do punch out on patch panel
  • Properly Label lines andcolor code by floor
  • Remove Single-Pair Power outlet and replace with Double-Pair Power outlet/surge protector for network switch, security system, cable modem and CATV amplifier

Am I missing anything? Pictures are below. I'm planning on bringing most of this up before we settle this Monday, but I wanted to make sure I know all that I'll need to do.


For Scale, the cabinet is 28" high.

Before they installed the amplifier:


After I got them to install the amplifier:


walterappleby's Avatar walterappleby 01:28 PM 11-20-2013
Be grateful you don't have this...

jautor's Avatar jautor 09:46 PM 11-20-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willki View Post

Apparently, this is what passes for "OK". I'm pretty sure that they should have put a patch panel in and not terminated the Network cables with RJ45 Jacks, but I can't find anything to support this before I rip into people. They already tried to get out without putting in an amplifier, despite the fact we added 7 CATV outlets, along with 11 ethernet ports. I'm at the point where I've got a pretty decent idea of what needs to be done:

How is that a "rat's nest"? It looks perfectly fine. For the small (relatively) number of category cables, nothing really wrong with terminating those directly with RJ45s so they can plug directly into equipment in that box.

I would not ask them to do anything - you're much more likely to end up with damaged cables or other issues instead of anything "better" than what you have there.


Jeff
NickTheGreat's Avatar NickTheGreat 08:50 AM 11-21-2013
You are the type of guy who'd date a supermodel and complain about her elbows being a little pointy, aren't you? wink.gifbiggrin.gif
DGF's Avatar DGF 10:27 AM 11-21-2013
All depends on what you thought you were paying for - were any of the specs written down? Apart from the horrible job recessing the panel into the drywall, everything else looks passable.

Seems like there are a lot of unspoken assumptions being made here. Even with the CATV wiring, if the amp wasn't specified and you just paid for "7 CATV outlets", I don't think the installer was delinquent.

I really don't see any basis to "rip into people" - you were expecting a Rolls-Royce, and got a Honda - it still does the job, but not in the manner you were hoping for.

If it were me, my take-away learning would be that I need to fully articulate my expectations before the job starts.
acesat's Avatar acesat 09:16 PM 11-21-2013
My friend, you're delusional if you think that's a rat's nest. Unless those are "after" pictures, don't rip into anyone bro. I wish every job I went to was like yours. Also I don't know what arrangements you had made but I think the cable co. should provide any amps you need.


For reference, these are rat's nests from my phone.



jautor's Avatar jautor 10:04 PM 11-21-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by acesat View Post

For reference, these are rat's nests from my phone.

Amatuer... wink.gif



(from a testing lab at work - luckily NOT a production environment)
M1chael's Avatar M1chael 06:40 AM 11-22-2013
I wish my wiring looked like that! After all the wiring that did not get ran during pre-construction, running addt'l wire has turn my distribution panel into a rat's nest....that my friend is not a rat's nest.
Willki's Avatar Willki 09:23 AM 11-22-2013
HO-LEE crap, this has become a nightmare for my (probably unhealthy) obsessive tendencies over clean and neat wiring.

Still, I got the supplies in today, and I'm still planning on ripping out the entire structured wiring enclosure and replacing it with a 42" cabinet.
I've prepped out tags for all the wires. And on jautor's advice, I'll leave the RJ45s in place.
jautor's Avatar jautor 10:30 AM 11-22-2013
Take all that stuff back and use the money to get your prescription refilled... biggrin.gif
DGF's Avatar DGF 10:40 AM 11-22-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willki View Post

HO-LEE crap, this has become a nightmare for my (probably unhealthy) obsessive tendencies over clean and neat wiring.

Still, I got the supplies in today, and I'm still planning on ripping out the entire structured wiring enclosure and replacing it with a 42" cabinet.
I've prepped out tags for all the wires. And on jautor's advice, I'll leave the RJ45s in place.

Welcome, my friend, to the slippery slope we all call a hobby!! biggrin.gif
AV_Integrated's Avatar AV_Integrated 10:08 PM 11-22-2013
I'm going to tell you, as an A/V professional, what you have is typical builder grade. They certainly do not owe you an amplifier, and that's not a requirement for 7 cable drops, especially if they aren't all hooked up and hot. They don't know your cable signal, and not all amplifiers will work with digital cable systems, so you can't guarantee they will work at this point anyway.

I would say that the only request you've made which is at all reasonable is the one for them to properly label the cables. They should also be able to do so with proper wire labels, not with a Sharpie. That is something every company should do and do properly... But the rest? No.

As said, there is nothing wrong with terminating cat cables to RJ-45 jacks, as you may want to put them right into a switch, or into your router, or something else.

Yes, things are 'tight' in the box, but really - this is not their issue or requirement to change out. The builder highered a low-end company, and this is what you paid for. You didn't pay for a larger box, and you didn't request it ahead of time, Now ALL the wiring is in place and you are finally going to bring it us as a point of contention? I can't imagine a single professional A/V company who would not say "Yes, that would be nice to have what you are asking for, but is that what you PAID for?" If you have a contract which calls for a structured wiring cabinet and a dozen network drops and a half dozen cable drops, then that's exactly what you have, and is was professionally done.

If you now want a 42" space cabinet, I would say that you should pay for them to rewire, change your wall, and rewire everything as you expect. The work they've done is very nice, and I'm sure they will do an excellent job of it.

But do they OWE it to you?

Hell no, they don't owe it to you.

But, I think that you get that, and it looks like you will just tackle the work yourself which is a good thing. For what it's worth, I got an inexpensive label maker which allows me to wrap my wires instead of using tags which get caught up on things. This way you can label wires, but still move them around easily.
http://www.amazon.com/Brady-110889-BMP21-Label-Printer/dp/B003X27H9O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1385183143&sr=8-1&keywords=brady+wire+label+maker


39CentStamp's Avatar 39CentStamp 01:26 PM 11-25-2013
Who did the structured wiring? What you are showing there is top notch builder/electrician work. Thats as good as it gets for them.

If you paid a low voltage company to do that they should have told you your options.

The cable company should be providing the cable amp. They have the meter to test signal strength and determine A.If you need an amp. B.What amp to use. A new house with new wire to 7 TV's may not even need an amp.
DGF's Avatar DGF 01:16 PM 11-27-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by 39CentStamp View Post

....What you are showing there is top notch builder/electrician work..

I still think that the way the panel is inset into the drywall sucks! Surely a pro wouldn't be proud of that level of workmanship?

It did somewhat amuse me that this wasn't on Willki's litany of grievances, and I know it's inside a closet, but that part of the project does look very amateurish. The panel door appears like it will just cover the unfinished drywall edges, but you won't convince me that this aspect of the install represents best-in-class craftsmanship (especially if there's a closet-rail full of dark-colored garments - I can only imagine trying to explain that one to my wife!).
sv650s's Avatar sv650s 02:06 PM 11-27-2013
Talk to the sheetrockers on that one. The box goes in prior to rock.
DGF's Avatar DGF 02:38 PM 11-27-2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by sv650s View Post

Talk to the sheetrockers on that one. The box goes in prior to rock.

....but to me, the end result still looks like cr*p.
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