junction box for one single conductor

civ_IV_fanApril 22, 2013

In the midst of rewiring a bedroom, i made a stupid mistake.

The light fixture was wired with knob and tube. Unlike with modern wiring only one wire went to the switch. I traced the wire that went back to the switch and abandoned it in the wall (cut off both ends, no juice to it whatsoever). However, there was a second wire that went to destinations unknown and is still live.

In my infinite wisdom, I cut the live wire back about a foot from the ceiling box. After a few expletives, I drilled a small hole in the ceiling about a foot from the ceiling box and poked the live wire out of the ceiling and capped it.

Now I'm trying to think what the heck to do with this wire. With it only being a single conductor, even a six cubic inch box is overkill.

I'm thinking about fashioning a single 2.5 cubic inch box for this one wire.

Does anyone have any creative but safe ideas to deal with this single wire?

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Is only one end of the wire live?

Trace it to its source and disconnect it there.

If it is getting power from the JB, cut it off inside the box and terminate it there.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2013 at 9:25AM
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brickeyee --

yes, i cut out the other wire (neutral, i assume, though i've heard they used to switch positive with K&T) back to the switch and capped the incoming neutral at the switch.

i traced the live positive the best i could but it seems it is spliced somewhere up in the ceiling. i certainly couldn't find any evidence of it in any junction boxes.

the k & t circuit that previously served this fixture serves about half the light switches in the house and two receptacles. everything else has been replaced over the years. i will eliminate the k&t altogether over time. it seems to be in pretty good condition, but i am concerned about splices in the ceiling (which i can't access)

    Bookmark   April 22, 2013 at 11:36AM
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i should also mention that in attempting to trace the wire i found a new wire type in my house

at first i thought it was knob and tube. the copper wires were covered with cloth. one black cloth and one sort of brown and black striped (may have originally been white and black). these two wires join together into a single cable that was round and very thick, also cloth covered.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2013 at 11:44AM
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There is no "positive" in AC wiring.

There are hots and neutrals.

You at least need to review something like 'wiring simplified' to understand how it all works.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2013 at 7:55PM
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okay i will at least review something like wiring simplified.

i actually just wired the my whole house up with speaker wire. that stuff will carry electric, right?

    Bookmark   April 22, 2013 at 9:50PM
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When you ask: "that stuff will carry electric, right?", I hope you are not planning to use any of the speaker wire to carry house electricity. Please clarify...that was ambiguously disturbing.

There seem to be a number of problems with your house wiring and given your limited understanding of what you are dealing with, it's a concern. I'm not trying to be insulting...just trying to keep you from setting the house on fire.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2013 at 3:15AM
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Speaker wire. That's funny!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2013 at 10:52PM
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Speaker wire carries electricity all right, at VERY low power levels.

The typical stuff you see is not actually rated for concealed installation in structures.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2013 at 10:07AM
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