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Dead Men Tales: So Thorough. So Quiet!

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HeatingHelp
HeatingHelp Administrator Posts: 650
edited June 2022 in THE MAIN WALL



So Thorough. So Quiet!

In this episode, Dan Holohan spins an on-the-job tale that will leave you laughing.

Listen and subscribe here.

Thank you to SupplyHouse.com for supporting this podcast.
ratio

Comments

  • BradHotNCold
    BradHotNCold Member Posts: 70
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    I had a plumber use his thumb and index finger to check for a live wire. I expressed my amazement that he wasn't electrocuted and he explained that by using two fingers on the same hand the current did not flow through his heart! I still prefer to use a tester!
  • BradHotNCold
    BradHotNCold Member Posts: 70
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    I should point out he was a third generation plumber, following both his father and grandfather into the biz!
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,552
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     :o 
    Retired and loving it.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,090
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    Everything entered below is considered dangerous....things old (not dead yet) men do/did.........don't try this at home.

    I use a non contact "pencil" voltage indicator.
    Even after that I still might do the brush finger.
    Especially if there is not another hot circuit to verify the function of the pencil.

    You always must be mindful of where your other hand and feet are.
    Standing on a dry wood floor versus wet concrete.
    This applies to any electrical enclosure.

    The callouses (I used to have) on fingers do not conduct very well either.

    And to touch anything that I am 99 % sure that is dead, habit has me using the back of the hand first.
    If something is hot your reflex response is to close your hand and pull away, so if using the inside of the hand you may grab it and not be able to let go.
    (I know this for a fact). :o


    Even works on steam pipes.
    Alan (California Radiant) ForbesJustinTheCarpenter
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,552
    edited May 2022
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    Very good advice. Thanks!
    Retired and loving it.
  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 3,675
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    I've never intentionally grabbed a hot wire (although I have been known to 'check' a known-dead wire by grabbing it, with accompanying theatrics, to entertain the children). I have, in the past, used one of those little plug-in Neon nightlights, the one that look like they were designed in the 20's. One finger on one prong, touch the other prong to the wire. It'll glow. In extreme cases, touch a pinky (same hand) to a ground. I never noticed anything doing that, although I did pucker up the first time I tried it!
  • In_New_England
    In_New_England Member Posts: 130
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    I always squirm a little at gallows humor, but I have to admit to giggling at my computer. Now my co-workers will think I'm not a serious worker. Like Howie. Did dan write this? A definite gift for comedy. Radio comedy at that, not an easy genre. Died with this new fangled thing called Telley-Veeshion.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,552
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    Thanks. Yes, I wrote it. It’s one of a collection called, The Contractor Stories. The book is available in the site’s store. 
    Retired and loving it.
    In_New_England
  • JDHW
    JDHW Member Posts: 76
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    In the dim and distant past I recall that to old fashioned real neon indicators were a bit marginal on 120 volt systems. I think the neons require about 90 volts minimum to strike. I thought that in this era electrician's testers used incandescent lamps that required a bit of current to operate so were more reliable at finding circuits that really were live.

    John
  • maddog1950
    maddog1950 Member Posts: 4
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    I had a service manager that would touch the hot wire to the appliance causing a short to ground tripping the breaker, no more hot wire.
  • JustinTheCarpenter
    JustinTheCarpenter Member Posts: 5
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    I have a bunch of the non-contact voltage sniffers, & I regard them as broken or dead battery till I can test them on a known live circuit. GFI's are great for that. & if there is a question I grab the multimeter. My hands use tools, they're not the tool, when it comes to electricity.
    Larry Weingarten
  • scott w.
    scott w. Member Posts: 209
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    I think the guy that told Dan the story may have stretched this tale. Women are the curious type and I can't believe the woman in this story wouldn't have gone down in the basement and checked to see if everything was OK with the service man. Good story though.
    In_New_England
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,944
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    I had a service manager that would touch the hot wire to the appliance causing a short to ground tripping the breaker, no more hot wire.

    Hope he never tried that with a Federal Pacific breaker panel:

    https://inspectapedia.com/fpe/FPE_Failure_Reports.php
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,750
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    My boss used to do that (but not on 480v) He would wet his thumb and finger, ground the thumb to the metal box and touch his finger to the wire.

    This is a good one and I saw him do it. He opened up a large panel with busbar's in it. We (I should say he , I have worked on live stuff but wanted no part of this but I was only 21 and dumb) had to drill a hole in the bussbar to bolt a lug on for the wire. It was either that or shut down the high voltage to an entire college campus.....but this was 1974

    So he did using an old Milwaukee drill (120volt) with a metal silver case on it!!! This was 20 years before cordless or double insulated drills.

    He put one of those old 3prong x 2 prong adapters on the drill cord so the ground going to the drill was disconnected as the drill frame was going to be "hot" when the drill bit touched the buss bar, and he brought in a half sheet of dry plywood to stand on.

    "What the hell" he said when I asked if this was ok, "it's just like a bird on a wire"
    CLamb