JWELECTRIC will not be bullying me into silence!

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by leejosepho, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    Yes and for some reason it now seems he cannot accept the fact that I now understand no significant amount of current was flowing to ground during the short I had in my panel.

    Oh well. And, I talked with my brother last night, and he also understands that. In the report of the situation at the campground, I now see I had in-ignorance overstated the actual affect of the campsite panels being bonded in an effort to shunt some power to ground.

    The panel for which I need a breaker retainer came off the shelf new at Lowe's about two weeks ago, and I am still looking for the retainer I need for that panel.

    @jwelectric: If you disagree with the statement made in my title for this thread, you have my permission to close this thread.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2011
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    If the thread has gone off topic, then it makes sense for it to be closed.
    A new thread should be started.

    And let me add that JW has been very nice to give us his expert advice on this forum. I really appreciate his time here. It frankly wouldn't be much without him.
    I love reading it. But I'm a plumber, so much of this goes over my head. It's the reason I refer out my electrical.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2011
  3. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

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    Lee, No one is trying to bully you into anything.

    I accept the fact that by your own words you think that the grounding electrode system of the premises wiring does something to keep people safe from the operation of the system. I conclude this by your repeated mention of how this or that wouldn’t work until you made some sort of hack attempt to connect the neutral to the equipment grounding terminal of a receptacle in order to get your computer to operate properly. For those who know something about the grounding system knows that this is not true no matter how much you want it to be.
    In your last post in the closed thread you, using ugly words still affirmed that what your brother did sure saved thousands of lives although he did nothing to reduce the dangers of the park.

    I will make this statement now and hope that it is clear. As long as I am moderator of this site we will not be posting how to do things in a unsafe manner such as the jumper from the grounding terminal to the neutral of a device.

    We will no longer discuss what you or he did in that thread. If you want to address the grounding electrode system we can do so. If you want to address bonding we can do so. No matter which we discuss it must be kept clean without the use of ugly words that are not appropriate for our young readers.

    As to the panel you are looking for a retainer for you have been told that there might not be a retainer for that main lug panel and the panel might need to be changed for one that has a main breaker already installed in order to comply with Article 225 of the NEC.
    Look at the panel cover and see if there are words that would indicate that the panel is suitable for service equipment as outlined in 225.36.

    225.36 Suitable for Service Equipment. The disconnecting means specified in 225.31 shall be suitable for use as service equipment.

    If it doesn’t say that it is suitable for service equipment then it needs to be changed.
  4. Speedy Petey

    Speedy Petey Licensed Electrical Contractor

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    If someone started a thread like this one on a board that I moderated it would be closed immediately and the appropriate steps taken. I don't care what board it is, it is NEVER OK to call out a mod in this way. Deal with it privately as stated.

    Lee, I don't see where anyone is trying to "silence" you. It would seem you are offended that your derailed thread was closed, because you took it personally.
  5. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

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    Pete, I look at the source of the statement and ……………… well I think it best I just leave it alone for now. He is upset that what he thinks he knows is not what he should know. I understand his frustration and animosity that what he was taught is untrue. As an instructor I see this every day in such things as current always follows the path of least resistance instead of current will follow every path available to it and current is always flowing to ground instead of current always flows from negative to positive (electron theory) or 110 will hold you but 220 will knock you away and the list goes on and on. Many get upset when someone disagrees with what they have been led to believe for years.
  6. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

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    Just like the two cell flashlight you carry in your hand grounding plays no role what so ever in how the current flows through the circuit. In our cars there is no grounding to earth and everything works just fine. The circuits installed in our homes will work just fine without any connection to earth.

    Where equipment grounding comes into play is at the service equipment where we are required to bond the equipment grounding conductor to the incoming source. This is done at the neutral point of the system. In our 120/240 volt systems this is done at the midpoint of the single phase transformer.

    The equipment grounding conductor is connected to any metal parts of appliances, or any other piece of equipment used for installing the electrical system such as metal boxes, conduits, panels, and any other metal that was not installed to carry current such as the conductors, bus bars, ect. The equipment grounding conductor never sees any current unless there is a fault to ground by something that is energized. This could be a direct short to ground such as touching the hot conductor to the equipment grounding conductor.

    In case of a fault to ground the equipment grounding conductor carries this current back to the source at the service equipment. Remember we are required to connect this equipment grounding conductor to the neutral in the service equipment, and this draws a high current which causes the breaker to trip or the fuse to blow. If everything is done correctly then this will happen as quick as .003 seconds and no longer than two seconds. This will happen when there is nothing connected to earth at all.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  7. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

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    Bless you my friend but you are making my head swell so my hat doesn't fit anymore.
    Thank you for the kind words and I will always do my best to be fair with the position you have entrusted me with. Should you see me getting out of line please whip my butt and send me to bed without supper.
  8. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    The thread in question was one I had started, and the topic had been expanded a couple of times when I added new questions in relation to the same electrical panel mentioned in the opening post. After that, the thread got closed only after another electrician challenged jwelectric about something.

    I also appreciate JW's time here, and I continue to learn from him. But like someone else has said to me in a PM, he occasionally likes to ridicule people ... and that bullying simply will not be tolerated! You have stopped him from talking about my picture taken while my wife and I and the child's mother were showing my grandson where our water came from, so now tell him to stop ridiculing and mocking people while making and re-making already-well-made points even after someone such as myself has admitted his error about something like whether or not any significant amount of power ever gets shunted to ground. There was absolutely no call for him to keep going on and on about my past error as if I still believed it and to then close the thread after being challenged by another electrician for doing so.
    =======================================

    I have found the breaker retainer I need, and the part number was listed right inside the panel's cover! However, I had wrongly thought the part number was on the installation instruction sheet for the panel and I had thrown that sheet away after the panel had been installed ... so I ended up making a 60-mile-round trip to Lowe's where I found that part number inside the cover of another panel ...

    Silly me.

    Interestingly, or maybe curiously, the electrical contractor that will be updating my service entrance never back-feeds a breaker as a main like I am doing, and the guy at the counter there said he had never even heard of a breaker retainer until I came in asking about one. That is no big deal, of course, but I do wonder what that contractor might have done in my workshop where only 30A is coming in and there is no panel even made with a 30A main breaker, as far as I know.

    I might ask the electrician about that when he comes out.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  9. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

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    The “other electrician†Lligetfa was asking for clarification on my comment of current flowing through earth. There was no challenge as a matter of fact we were in agreement from the first page.

    Correcting someone when they are wrong is neither ridicule nor bullying but instead guidance. As an instructor in the electrical field the one thing I have learned is that people who stand fast on an incorrect belief will do anything and everything in their power to prove that their incorrect thinking must have some merit.

    No one has stopped me from making any comment about the picture and I still affirm that should I be on a jury I would hand down a finding of guilty of child neglect for allowing that child to play around something as unsafe as that picture shows.

    Go back and read your last post in that thread. Yes I edited out the ugly word.

    The breaker that is in the panel where the 30 amp circuit originates protects the conductors going out to that remote panel not the breaker that the conductors landed on. That breaker could be any size you desire up to and including 2000 amps if you could figure how to land #10 conductors under the lugs. That breaker is to fulfill the requirements of 225.31 of the NEC
    225.31 Disconnecting Means. Means shall be provided for disconnecting all ungrounded conductors that supply or pass through the building or structure.
    Here is the answer
    408.36 (D) Back-Fed Devices. Plug-in-type overcurrent protection devices or plug-in type main lug assemblies that are backfed and used to terminate field-installed ungrounded supply conductors shall be secured in place by an additional fastener that requires other than a pull to release the device from the mounting means on the panel.
  10. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

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    First off, I do not profess to be a licensed electrician. It clearly states on the left that I am a DIYer and "not in the trades".

    JW,
    I've called you out before on you propensity to take the most literal stance even when it would appear to others that the OP is simply using the incorrect terminology. Your bedside manner is what it is. "Let those without sin cast the first stone" does not apply to me... I have been called out often for my poor bedside manner and my employer has sent me to attitude adjustment courses several times. I don't make grown men cry nearly as often now.
  11. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    That's funny.
    When I broke into construction, I used a lot of "construction" humor. But when I noticed that grown men were crying, I figured I had to change the way I joked. I still do it though. Can't help it. Sometimes something snaps and I type the most gawd awful things.

    My favorite with a new apprentice was,

    "I don't care what they say about you, you do okay."

    Then they would ask what people had been saying.

    "Nothing."

    On one job, a laborer was talking about his relationship between him and his boss, saying things like,
    "My boss says, John, can you speed it up a bit? And John, go fetch that tool for me, and John, dig a ditch here."

    So my journeyman at the time decides to have some fun. He turns to him after a while and says

    "Who is the John guy that the contractor keeps complaining about? He sounds like a complete mess."

    John gets this look on his face and then asks what we think of him.

    "Oh, you're a good worker."

    John says thanks and then starts to simmer at his boss. Saying he's going to confront him. And then he turns to us and says he's going to let us in on a little secret, he's John.

    We act shocked. Oh my goodness, you can't be John. You're a good worker. Your boss is wrong.

    And then before stuff hits the fan we let him in on it. We were messing with him.
    He's baffled as to how we did that. How did we know "his" name was John?
    Oh it's fun sometimes. Maybe too much fun.
  12. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

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    As I said, the guy carries a big hickory stick like my Sister Jerome. And most answers, like hers, have a number before them from the bible, which has a 'few' flaws in it. As all books do, especially one written and re-written 2,000 times. [bible especially and possible the NEC also] Sometimes, these numbers are downright insulting and no matter the validity, a cleaner and simpler answer might be more valued and appreciated. The 'tease' questions may work in the class, but its irritating on line.

    From what I see, we get 4 to 600 deaths by electrocution yearly in the US. That makes colon and prostrate cancer far larger issues, and the highways a real slaughter house.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  13. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Well, the thing is, we have to buy permits and have things inspected.
    So of course we're going to think that way.

    If you live in the woods and the nearest neighbor is over in the next county and you live off the grid, then maybe how we think is funny.

    But we get the "law" enforced every day to us.
    When I was doing construction plumbing, I would rough in five three bath homes a week. That was five inspections a week and 260 inspections a year. We don't have "time" to mess with the inspectors. We learn how to do it once, get it inspected and passed the first time. It's simple really. Do it right and do it once.
    (Three man crew. Journeyman, apprentice and helper)
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  14. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

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    Often, inspectors are contractors that couldnt make it. So you get some dopes with attitudes and 'their' law interpetation that can cause you thousands of dollars in grief. We dont even have a plan checker anymore, not enough construction, they farm it out.

    Ask the head inspector a venting question and he tells you to call the plumbing supply house.

    Tripled all the fees to make up for the lack of work. I wish I could get away with that.
  15. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    I think all of us DIYers need to be sure we understand that. For example:

    My house presently has two completely-separate panels -- one on the inside of the house and with eight 120V breakers, and then one outside for the four 240V circuits (AC, dryer, stove and workshop) added along the way after this house was first built -- and both of those panels are fed directly from one meter base (via 60A wire under the eave) and accepting power from the pole across the street. There is no main breaker in either panel, and neither is there any main breaker or disconnect for the *entire* house (such as needed by firefighters in an emergency (or such as pulling the meter like I would do if I were going to install the new panel myself)). The electrician that is coming out to update (or should I say "upgrade"?) our service (but not the entire house) is going to wire all circuits to one panel inside the house, but mostly only because *he* simply must or else *he* would not be allowed to do anything at all even if I tried offering him millions of dollars to do so. He has specifically said he has never seen a fire happen because of the kind of arrangement we presently have, and he would have no issue with leaving that arrangement as it is. However, the codes and/or the inspectors that used to allow that kind of thing have since been changed, and he would not be able to get past an inspector who would then allow my power turned back on unless he (the electrician) changes what we have.

    So, one dilemma we occasionally see here is that one of us DIYers can occasionally do something (or at least leave something in place) at one of our homes and still be "legal" even when a contractor would find his license to do work for us jeopardized if he or she -- the last plumbing contractor to send her guys to my house is a "she" -- tried to only just leave the same thing in place ...

    ... and that is at least one reason we sometimes get the kinds of answers we get here.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  16. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    What gets somewhat confusing is what is grandfathered and what level of change triggers the requirement to bring things up to current code. The world didn't jump right from notching sticks to using computers to do accounting, for example...over the years, we've learned from our mistakes and the codes have been adjusted to account for newer materials and previous inadequacies. While the 'older' ways may have worked, they may not be all that safe. Think about knob and tube wiring...technology didn't exist to use stuff like romex...nobody in their right mind would install the stuff today, but it was done, and is still in use in places, but any changes dictate updating things.
  17. jwelectric

    jwelectric Electrical Contractor/Instructor

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    It is the use of these numbers that validate the post as being correct.
    Most of the DIY people are looking for conformation that what they are doing will not burn down their house but could care less about the codes. If they are trying to even be close to right then they will have their work inspected and guess what the inspector is sworn to use during their inspection.
    But then again over 90% of the DIY will neither get a permit nor an inspection and take a chance that their homeowner’s insurance does not have to do an investigation.

    I can’t say about Ca. but here in NC this is not even close to being true. I work daily with electrical code enforcement officials and I can count on one hand the number that was a contractor that couldn’t make it and of those a couple was due to health problems.
    Here in NC the code enforcement official is required to take and pass a course at a community college before he can get a Standard Certificate in the field of inspection for which they seek employment. They take an oath to enforce the codes as adopted by the state.

    I believe you will find that this is not true in Arkansas and not true in most states across our nation. I wouldn’t matter who did the work it would be required to conform to the codes. What you are saying is that most licensed people won’t buck the system where a DIYer just aren’t going to get an inspection to start with and their attitude is simple, “if it works it is fine, codes be damned.”

    One thing to keep in mind here is that if it wasn’t compliant to the standards of the day it wouldn’t have a grandfather clause to protect it. This is one of the biggest things in remodel work is when an inspector finds something that was never compliant and points it our during his inspection
  18. leejosepho

    leejosepho DIY scratch-pad engineer

    I doubt that is true. Many of the questions we see right here in this forum are about codes.

    I doubt that statement also. Some come here asking questions since they know they can legally do work without having an inspector come out, and yet they still want the work to be done properly.

    Do you happen to know the percentage of that number that is not even required to do so?

    I am not saying that at all. A licensed contractor will not "buck the system", so to speak, because s/he could lose his or her license to do work for the rest of us if s/he does, and I have never ever heard anyone say "codes be damned". And especially in my own case, I try to be sure I understand the codes so I can do the work properly even though there is no requirement for me to have everything inspected.

    Yes, and there is definitely a difference between that and something simply being okay until some later work triggers an update. I recently found some splices inside a wall, and those were never supposed to be there and needed fixing even when first made. On the other hand, the service entrance at my house cannot be updated all by itself unless at least a certain amount of other work gets done at the same time.

    Overall, however, the matter of "by the book" is what is at the core of this discussion. A licensed contractor (such as the electrician coming out to do my service update) will typically do things "by the book" because s/he must in order to be able to work at all, and s/he will typically do that even though s/he might well know something "slightly less", so to speak, would still be mechanically sound and completely safe ... and then for the most part, the informed and capable DIYer -- never mind the ignorant and incapable ones for the moment -- can typically do work that is mechanically sound and completely safe without having to be concerned about "by the book" repercussions from the governmental body established to protect him or her and others from shoddy work from a contractor. But then even beyond all of that, of course, is the matter of location (such as in a suburban neighborhood as opposed to "out on the farm") ... and that is why there are some jurisdictions where DIY work is hardly ever allowed at all, and that is so the codes will protect one's *neighbors* from sub-standard work.

    For yourself, JW, holding to a hard "code" is necessary while training professionals, and it is certainly good when DIYers such as myself have opportunities to listen in ...

    ... and for that, we thank you.

    **tongue-in-cheek**

    To my fellow DIYers: Coming here and asking questions of pros is kind of like riding a Yamaha to a hard-core biker rally, and I have been on both sides of that road. They will help you out because they are people caring about people, but sometimes things can get a bit rough! Like Terry and others have mentioned, they have "paid their dues" during training, and they still keep each other "on their toes" where the rest of us are just trying to make a repair of some kind or do a little home improvement and then get back to do whatever else *we* normally do!
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2011
  19. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

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    Q. What kind of motorcycle does a clown ride?

    A. A Yama HA, HA, HA!
  20. Cookie

    Cookie .

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    What is your real gripe here Lee?

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