About Using Raceways
Raceways are easier for the average do-it-yourselfer to use in cable management when concealing the wires for home theater systems. These raceways are designed for simplicity, making them the first choice for cable management. Although some applications may require some skills at using home tools, we will explain how to use the most common cable raceways to conceal wires for your home theater system.
Getting Ready to Conceal Your Wires
As with any project, it's a good idea to have everything ready to conceal your wires before beginning. To conceal wires with raceways, here are a few things you're likely to need:
Planning Your Wire Run
Before starting, you'll need to plan each run of wires you plan to conceal. Starting at one component, mark the spot on the floor or wall where you want the cable raceway to start. Then simply measure and make notes of the distances and turns along the cable run. Make special note of all turns, because most cable raceways will need special fittings to make the turns. It's a good idea to make a diagram or blueprint of the cable run. Using the diagram, you can determine the lengths of cable raceways needed as well as the types and numbers of other fittings needed.
Checking Lengths of Cable
Now that you have the length of the raceways needed, measure the distance from the ends of your raceway to the components. Add this distance to the length of the raceway, then add an additional 12" (30cm) to ensure you have enough wire to connect the two components.
Labeling and Connecting Your Wires
Now that you have enough wire and enough raceways and special fittings, you can connect the cables to the components. Labeling each end of the wire for its purpose and destination will be crucial for troubleshooting so don't skip this step. If you are concealing more than one wire, it's also a good idea to bunch the wires together using cable ties, tape or some other means before proceeding. Usually, one cable tie every 6-8" (15-20cm) is sufficient to keep the wires and cables neat.
Cut Raceways to Proper Lengths
Now that your cables are connected and labeled, you can start cutting your cable raceways. Once you cut a raceway, lay it in place and connect all fittings before attaching them to the walls. Once you're certain all pieces fit properly, either peel the adhesive backing and them in place.
Inserting Wires in Raceways
Although some raceways may be designed differently, most have a track installed and use a cover which clips in place over the wires. To use these, simply lay the wire on the track, clipping the cover in place over the wires. Once you have done this and installed the corner fittings, you are done.