You would think that cable pulling is a pretty cut and dry task, but that couldn't be more wrong! There are many aspects to consider before any action can take place, such as the temperature of the area, any moisture, the type and size of the raceway, the entrances and exits, and which pulling tool you'll need to use. Will you need fish tape? Would a fish rod be a better choice? And will you need a wire pulling grip for extra assistance? Almost like painting, it seems like more work is done in the prep work than the actual wire pulling process itself!
Route New Cable and Wires Through Walls and Conduit
Typically coming in reels of 50' and 100', fish tape is designed to guide your wiring through tight, confined spaces such as walls, ceiling, and conduit. A long, thin, rigid wire that is usually coiled along a plastic reel, the fish tape has an organic curvature that helps guide the wire along, especially the farther it goes out. Most tapes come with an end that can either be a hook or loop to have a fastener device attach to it to help guide the string along while pulling.
Once the fish tape is pulled out from the wheel, it is fed through the area, unwinding it from its plastic reel. When it appears on the other end, you'll attach the wire or cable to the end of the tape to pull it all back through. Generally, the wiring is lubricated before it is fed through in 3 ft. intervals. Make sure to not pull too fast to keep everything intact!
While fish tape may usually come in 50’ or 100’ options, HNSTools offers a variety of different lengths, including big and small and choices from reputable suppliers such as Ideal, Klein Tools, Greenlee, and more.
Get More Pulling Control with Fish Rods
There are plenty of times when fish tape may not be the best option, as it can get caught on insulation, separate wires, and any other obstructions. In these times, fish rods can be the better option.
While they’re not what you may think of when you see the term "fish rod," they are just as handy. Perfect for routing wires through wall cavities and drop ceilings, they are firmer than fish tape, so you can have more control when guiding the wiring. This will let you maneuver the cable around any interference while pulling it through. HNSTools has fish rods in a variety of sizes, including some sets that can connect together for a longer length.
Use Grips for Outdoor, Heavy-Duty Pulling
When the time comes for pulling on a larger scale, a wire pulling grip is the way to go. Combining strength and durability, these grips have a steel construction and have been heat-treated. With up to thousands of pounds in terms of strength, these grips are typically used for pulling steel strand cables outdoors and are a must-have with any heavy-duty cable pulling assembly.
HNSTools has a variety of cable pulling tools and accessories, such as replacement leaders, darts, reels, and repair kits for when things go wrong. For other items you may need for your project, check out our cable management and cable preparation tools that you may need.