I was looking for a 1/2" EMC hickey for some tight, ugly bends, but don't see any in any catalogs. A few places still make rigid/IMC hickeys for 1/2 but are these compatible or they too loose, and will collapse thinwall?
Why not just use pull elbow(s) or conduit bodies of the right bent? It'll only take a couple of tighter bends to make it difficult to pull, anyway.
I just was reminded of how fast total bend angle adds up in pulling the
3-phase for the woodshop the last few days---nothing but a couple 90s and 2 45s with a few additional wiggles to get around the beams and a run of only some 15-18 ft was more than I could pull; ended up having to disconnect in the middle and pull the two halves to get it finished--would've been _much_ simpler if had broken down and put in another pull body instead of trying to have a smooth run...
Just sayin'... :) You _might_ be solving the wrong problem even if you find and can make the bends.
PS: I've seen guys bend EMT freehand by packing it solidly with sand to prevent the wall collapse but I've never done it myself...I have, once, had some success with a home-made "tubing bender" on the principle of the small tubing benders of inserting in a spring that is only a tiny bit over the OD. Finding such a spring, of course, is the trick; just happened to have one for the 3/4" by pure luck from an old spray boom rig but I wouldn't have anything around that I know of for 1/2" even if you were close by... :)
I was always taught the maximum total including wiggles is 360 degrees of bend between pulling points. If at all possible I never run more than 270. Even that is nearly impossible when you get about 60-70% of capacity. NEC and I disagree about 100% of capacity. I've never been able to pull a conduit close to as full as what NEC says is 100%. No amount of monkey snot will help at that point.
No question about it- this is to cram stuff where it doesn't really belong as to not have to tear other stuff out. It's still less trashy than stringing up box after box with couplers though. Stuff like that makes me cringe.
I can understand why you'd never use a hickey bender for a new wiring job.
I've always had crappy luck with spring benders. Sometimes they just don't want to come off anymore, and a "unscrewing" them can be a real pain.
I wouldn't say "boxes" but a judicious pull elbow or two _might_ simplify the rest...that's sorta' what I was up against although I did tear out some old stuff that I'll never use again from the old feed mill motor starters 'cuz may repurpose them later...
That's so...just wasn't thinkin' while doing the run messing around trying to get the stuff located neatly. Seemed so short... :)
It did add up to (just) under 360, btw, but just no how was I a-gonna' be the one to pull it--I suspect in another location for the pull where could get a better angle at it even I could have and I'm sure a stout young journeyman would have had no real trouble...
I started buying two of whatever common small fittings I needed one of, or four extras for bolts. Now I can build most anything from parts on hand and then add them to the shopping list to replace later. I just bought two conduit power cord strain reliefs after using the last one on a Powerstat outlet box.
In the factory where I learned to wire industrial machinery the standard practice was to use straight lengths of conduit between pull elbows, or Sealtite for tricky tight spots and motors. Since they built custom equipment for the testing of new products the chance of having to add more wires to accomodate design or spec changes later was pretty high.
The wire outside control boxes was 16 AWG or larger stranded MTW (machine tool wire), which I think was a General Motors spec.
I designed and assembled the ladder-logic control boxes but didn't do very much of the work outside them.
I've discussed this project more in the rec.woodworking group as it's converting a corner of the old barn to accommodate the woodshop more fully and place the planer in a new spot...it's an old (70s/80s vintage) Powermatic industrial machine on 3-phase so it's the power to it plus the phase converter. There's a lot of old conduit and pieces-parts around plus other new stuff but one of the goals was to use up as much of the old as could...but, given the price of fittings at the local, I've searched for and found various supplies of NOS and estate and other distressed-sale items and have bought couplings and connectors in lots of from 15 to 25 plus half-dozen various directional conduit bodies, etc., etc., etc., from 1/2" to 1" for the supply bin. But, just as with other stuff, it never seems to matter how much stuff there is on hand, there's always something that would make it work better or in some cases that is indispensible.
The best bargain was 25 3/4" RACO compression couplings for 12.50, shipping included, but was able to beat the best online prices quite a bit on all and there's no comparison to local retail and the only electrical distributor here is ridiculously expensive and not locally owned, anyway, but a branch office who won't talk account because as farm don't do enough to meet their imposed monthly minimums.
Anyway, I've now got more of much of this than will ever use in what time I have left but will undoubtedly still find pieces that will have to purchase; it's inevitable.
For any place with frequently changing requirements that (or open conduit trays) would be the logical approach, yes.
I spent most of working career consulting for the electric utilities doing R&D instrumentation work but was virtually always all temporary rigging for testing/development purposes; the instrumentation racks and all were done by a tech so didn't have to deal with that all that much--and he was _much_ better at "dressing" a cabinet than I (and well above average overall).
There was a period of time when we were doing online coal analyzers at mines and prep plants, loadout stations and the like. There the customer was responsible for the mechanical installation of the field wiring which included HV coax for the scintillation crystal electronics (these were gamma-spec devices, basically). At one location the guys couldn't pull the coax and control cables by hand so they went and got the front end loader and pulled 'em with no trouble! :) Needless to say, at 2400 V, it wasn't long before the HV supply wasn't. They ended up having to dig up the installation as the conduit was full of water besides. Turns out they'd put so much on it in tension and speed, the friction heat had actually melted/cut through the 2" plastic conduit they'd use in the inner corner of the sweep going underground...