Conduit FREE cabling and networking Helpdesk
 Question by Marc Cushman posted 09 May 2006
Why is the distance so limited if the cables are inside conduit vs. in a cable tray or laying in the cieling? It seems odd that outside conduit they can go 328' but inside only 90'. If we plan on switching from a standard phone system to VOIP a couple years from now, the conduit would just be wasted correct? Should I ask about a possible fiber option? If we ran fiber to all the data drops instead of CAT6, although it would cost a small fortune, would still be able to utilize the conduit? Basically I am wondering what alternative we have-I don't want to recommend something as a work-around if there is a better, even though more expensive, alternative.

Thank you!
 Answer by Joseph Golan posted 09 May 2006
Dear Marc ,
I think you may have gotten some mis-information or misunderstood what you have read. There is no difference on distance. A link in a structured cabling system is defined as 90 meters (295') and the channel is 100 meters (328')which include the patch and equipment cordage. The 90' rule has to do with a single length of conduit before a pull box is used to facilitate installation of the cable. If you need to go 295' in conduit, just install pull boxes every 90'. Conduit provides the best protection for cable but at a price as you have already figured out.

There are additional rules on using conduit as to fill and number of bends. If you are planning a large project, get a communications consultant involved (like a BICSI RCDD) who can better steer you in a direction that is best and most cost effective.
Joseph Golan, RCDD

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