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Dead Men Tales: The Tenderfoot Years

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HeatingHelp
HeatingHelp Administrator Posts: 650
edited September 2022 in THE MAIN WALL
The Tenderfoot Years

In this episode, Dan Holohan shares funny stories from the start of his career that involve a missing skyhook, an overly heavy roof drain, and some tough lessons.

Listen here.

Thanks to our sponsor SupplyHouse.com.
CLamb

Comments

  • Labenaqui
    Labenaqui Member Posts: 72
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    Love your "Tenderfoot" Story! Reflected upon mine as a 16 yr old newbie in the Woolen Mill Dye House, where the only requirements were "a strong back & a weak mind". Needless to say the "weaker" among us were dispatched for buckets of steam for the steamer, etc. We all or should(?) go through it .....
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,536
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    Been there... come to think of it, maybe in later years I've even done that to someone...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 8,153
    edited September 2022
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    I spent 2 years of my career at a local Supply House as their tech support/salesman for HVAC equipment. I loved it when the rookies were sent in for a left handed pipe wrench or a bucket of steam. But one day I noticed a 50 lb bag some chemical (maybe Calcium Chloride) that was rarely used that if poured in a 5 gallon bucket with a can of refrigerant and added some water, it would get quite hot. This was used when you needed to add refrigerant to a heat pump when the outside temperature was below 20°. I forget the brand name but it has some catchy name like Super Heat, or Heat something. I knew exactly what it was, for but have never sold a bag or used it myself in my previous 15 years as a contractor or service tech.

    This was my chance... There were 4 women that worked in the office with me and the 5 other male sales staff. A guy came in asking for a bucket of steam and of course everyone had a good laugh. The counter guys sent him into the sales office to write up the order and one of the girls was free to take the order.
    After the Rookie left the office, I stopped the girls in their tracks. Bucket of steam... why didn't you send him to me? Then a few clicks on the computer, up came 50# bag of Super Heat / Calcium Chloride (or something of the like) and I told them to look up part # XYZ??? on their screen. I then explained what it was used for and that this product was originally called "BUCKET of STEAM". Like calling Gelatin desert JELLO or a refrigerator a FRIGIDAIRE, Calcium Chloride was called "Bucket O Steam". As the girls listened to my story, they were taking it all in and I had them believing that this rookie was actually looking for something we had in stock! Boy did they feel embarrassed at their mistake. I think they still believe it today, 30 years later.

    As a kid working at the oil company vehicle maintenance shop, our in house truck mechanic, Al Kelly used to tell me all about Sky Hooks, Blinker Fluid, Kronston valves, and Finnigan Pins. Watch this video for how to change your Blinker Fluid. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6GsXhBb10k

    Edward Young Retired

    After you make that expensive repair and you still have the same problem, What will you check next?

    CLamb
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,836
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    But one day I noticed a 50 lb bag some chemical (maybe Calcium Chloride) that was rarely used that if poured in a 5 gallon bucket with a can of refrigerant and added some water, it would get quite hot. This was used when you needed to add refrigerant to a heat pump when the outside temperature was below 20°. I forget the brand name but it has some catchy name like Super Heat, or Heat something. I knew exactly what it was, for but have never sold a bag or used it myself in my previous 15 years as a contractor or service tech.

    And to think i've just been putting it in a bucket of hot water...