A flexible conduit protects electrical wiring from the elements. It can also be used to ground wiring, and it has a simple, tidy appearance.
When dealing with conduits, there are a few different ways to break them down to size. A Flexible conduit is more straightforward to deal with than a rigid conduit, but it provides less security for the conductors it transports. Since it is difficult to bend a rigid conduit, it is also preferable to use a flexible one.
Fortunately, learning how to cut flexible metal conduits is a simple task that you should be able to master in a matter of minutes. Cutting versatile conduit needs only a few essential tools, which you probably already have on hand.
Cutting a flexible metal conduit can be easy and convenient for you if you follow this content’s guides. I have given all every small thing about how do you cut flexible metal conduit here in this guide.
What is flexible metal conduit?
Heavy-duty galvanized steel conduit is mounted with threaded fittings in flexible metal conduit. It’s usually used outside to shield electrical cables, panels, and other equipment from damage, and it can also provide structural protection.
For flexible metal conduits, you will find two different wall thicknesses. You will see that a wide wall flexible metal conduit is thicker than a small diameter flexible metal conduit, which has a thinner wall. Where the code needs additional mechanical protection, the whole wall is made more substantial.
What tools can be used to cut a metallic conduit?
Handsaws are small, compact, and simple to control and also an effective cutting tool for metal conduit.
A blade with 18 to 32 teeth can be used. This prevents the blade from being entangled and splitting. When you use the handsaw, you may need to use a vise to keep the conduit in place. When you cut a flexible metal conduit, you need to put the blade in the handsaw in an upward direction.
For cutting rigid conduit, a driven handsaw is also compact and manageable, but it is heavier. When cutting a large amount of conduit or making several cuts, you can use a powered handsaw. This flexible metal conduit cutter will avoid fatigue and help you maintain a 90-degree angle between the blade and the pipe.
When cutting conduit with a pipe cutter, less effort is needed, but more operation is required, and the pipe must be kept in an elevated vise. You may be careful that the blade should be lined up with the cutting line and tightened until it comes into contact with the pipe.
A reamer is an essential tool if you want to cut flexible metal conduit. The reamer’s task is to get rid of any burrs that have formed within the pipe. After using a cutting metal conduit pipe, you may need to swipe the reamer inside the conduit until the burrs are gone. After reaming, you can smooth out the edges with an industrial-quality file.
Before you start to cut flexible metal conduit, lookout the below video to gain a practical knowledge from an electrician :
Cutting Flexible Metal Conduit (Step by Step Guide)
Step-1: Measuring the Distance
The first step is to calculate how many conduits you’ll need to finish your project. The conduit’s direction can differ depending on your project, and it’s normal for it to bend or contort to meet your requirements.
You can start by measuring the wiring box at the first step. If you want any turns, take those measurements separately and then add them to your measure. Once the conduit is removed, the total amount you have determines how long it will need to be.
Step-2: Preparing the Conduit
When you know the exact size required for your conduit, measure it with a tape measure and mark it on the conduit length to realize that where you’ll need to cut it.
Conduit is hugely adaptable and can even be extended lengthwise. When cutting conduit, it’s important not to cut it when it’s extended because it can shrink back to its original size once you’re finished.
After that, you can bend the conduit to get a good cut. When you bend the conduit, it will lock the multiple convolutions in place. This will allow you to make a clean cut that won’t deform when it returns to its original form.
Step-3: Cut the Conduit (Choose 1 of 3 Methods)
Method-1: Cutting Flexible Metal Conduit with Hack Saw
A fine-bladed hacksaw may be used to sever the conduit. Even though it sounds plain, this is the preferred form. This is the best way to cut flexible metal conduits by using this hacksaw. For this, you need to follow these steps.
1. To begin, secure the end of the conduit with the tang of a tape measure.
2. Then, with a hacksaw blade resting over the cut point, saw through the pipe diameter. When the end of the conduit is in proper shape, you have to cut off the marked edge carefully, and any broken convolutions with a hack saw, the most efficient fitting assembly is assured.
3. Then, you need to gently rotate the conduit up and down as the blade cuts until the hacksaw has sliced all the way through. After that, you can cut the conduit along the line you’ve drawn in it. You must be work slowly and carefully to ensure a smooth, even cut. Cutting the conduit in this phase would be beneficial for you while you’re working in the sector.
4. You’ll now need to clean up the cut ends by trimming away the mangled piece. Whatever method you use, the process leaves a razor-sharp edge on the metal near the wires.
Method-2: Cutting Metal Conduit on Scroll Saw
Cutting a metal conduit on a scroll saw isn’t the easiest way to cut metal conduit. When the scroll saw makes contact with metal, hot, sharp edges, it can cause physical harm to you. Wearing protective clothing, safety goggles, a dust mask, and ear protection is essential for you, in addition to following each tool’s safety instructions. You must follow the following steps.
1. First, you must put on protective eyewear, a face shield, and ear protection. You can wear long-sleeved clothes along with trousers which are made of fire-resistant materials.
2. When choosing a weapon, bear in mind that a blade with tiny teeth is best for cutting metal. Spiral blades are identical to regular blades that have been twisted around and around.
This implies that the teeth are oriented in all directions, and the idea is to cut in either direction.
3. Next, cut two pieces of thin plywood to the exact dimensions of your workpiece.
One piece of thin plywood can be attached to your metal workpiece with a soft adhesive spray.
4. Last but not least, you must confirm the template to the wood – metal – wood sandwich. To prevent it from moving, wrap it all in transparent packing tape. After that, you may need to swap blades even more often than you’re used to.
5. Move off the metal after cutting it. This avoids the heating problem, and it also makes it easier to monitor the workpiece and keeps it securely fixed to the saw bed.
Method-3: Using Fein Multi-master for Cutting Metal Conduit
Fein tools ensure exceptional results, and the Fein MultiMaster ensures maximum efficiency, protection, and dependability. A high-quality Fein MultiMaster tool can be used to cut a variety of metal conduits. You can discover a wide variety of possible uses with suitable blades for your Fein Multi-master weapon.
1. First, ensure that each job is paired with the appropriate metal cutting blades for oscillating tools. If you use it poorly, a regular MultiMaster saw blade would not provide you with a good quality cut through metal and flame out faster.
2. The bi-metal blade must then be chosen. This will give you a suitable metal conduit cut and make it perfect for cases where you need to cut through both. You should consider the blade’s shape in addition to choosing a bi-metal blade for cutting through metal.
3. The MultiMaster can be held in its working place in any traditional drill stand or connected to the workbench thanks to the mechanical interface. For straight cuts, use a thrust cut blade, and use a moderately blade for rough metals. This will enable the Fein Multi-master to do the job while you cut for the best results.
4. Completely encapsulated electronics and infinitely variable speed settings are included with the tool. Then can also set the speed control from the electronic settings. Remove the metal from the workstation after it has been cut smoothly.
Step-4: Smooth Out the Edge
After that, you’ll need to smooth out the edge of your conduit. The conduit would be unsafe to deal with and more difficult to mount if it has a burred or sharp point. You can do this with a few fast passes through a metal file. You will see the edge can be removed after making the conduit easier to work with.
Step-5: Clean Up the Area
Now, you have to properly clean up the entire workstation, bench, and other accessories. Firstly, you need to wear safety glasses, a face mask and protective gloves for avoiding an accident. They carefully moved off all the tiny and extensive accessories. After that, wash the entire area with anti-poisonous liquid sanitizer to avoid infection.
Frequently Ask Questions
Where to buy metal flexible conduit?
You can buy metal conduits both online and offline. Online shopping is also a good option. Before buying metal flexible conduit, you have to know about the famous brands, and you have to study the product features. Based on the category and quality of the conduit you want to buy, you can search online about the products. After studying these flexible conduit’s features and quality, you can buy them online from Amazon.com or either you can go to the market to buy them from the brand’s authorized dealers.
What is difference between aluminum and steel flexible metal conduit?
Steel has greater weight and also expensive in comparison to aluminum. Iron is sturdy and immune to violence. Because of its lighter weight, ease of installation, and lower cost, you can select aluminum as the metal conduit. On the other hand, steel conduits have an advantage over PVC avenues in that they can also function as a basing road.
Metal conduit is the wiring system that provides the most mechanical support to the enclosed conductors due to their walls’ thickness and strength. The NEC recognizes a correctly mounted metal conduit device as an equipment grounding conductor, which is an added advantage of using a steel conduit. Steel conduit is used for two primary purposes.
It offers the best possible protection for your electrical conductor and wiring systems while also making conductor and wiring insertion and removal more straightforward. You can use Steel conduit in almost any application that requires electrical conduit and wiring.
Whenever you consider aluminium’s properties, you will also be aware of the advantages of aluminum products, especially from the perspective of metal electrical conduits. Extrusion and welding by skilled and knowledgeable facilities will lower the cost of extruded aluminum electrical conduits for both residential and commercial applications.
You can use aluminum coating solutions to improve some of aluminum’s natural properties, which makes it better even more desirable.
When to use flexible metal conduit?
Analyzing your wiring situation will help you decide whether to use flexible metal conduits or rigid conduits. A flexible metal conduit is usually found in sizes ranging from 12 to 34 inches in length, with diameters ranging from 3/8 to 4 inches. It’s often used in areas where a rigid conduit would be difficult to mount due to the flexible conduit’s flexibility.
What is the largest size of flexible metal conduit?
Flexible conduit comes in a variety of sizes, ranging from 1/4′′ to 2′′. Flexible metal conduit sizes can be varying with outer and inner diameters. A flexible metal conduit’s top diameter can be up to 4 inches. Just 6 feet of flexible metal conduit can be used for grounding. The maximum length for running flexible metal conduit for a separate grounding conductor is over 6 feet.
Cutting flexible conduit is easy, and you can do it with just a few tools you probably already have on hand. Work wisely, work safely, and have fun with your project, as always. You will ensure that it is as safe as possible by selecting the right metal cutting tool for the job.