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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

Re: Generator Test Revisited RANT ALERT

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Billy NY

07-10-2014 07:50:52

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John, if you remember, I had considered an installation off my miller trailblazer, an NT 251 Welder, 8500 watts continuous, back fed through a 3 wire conductor, a 50 amp wire size if that is correct, maybe (3) #4, aluminum. The one thing that I never forgot from that discussion is that the neutral needs to be bonded at the panel, and not "downstream" whereas you mentioned it may be common to for gen sets to have the neutral bonded, whereas you said to simply disconnect that conductor, so the above is true. We discussed switching for something like this and I believe you suggested the type and it should interrupt or isolate the feeders coming in, so that when that backfed line is energized, there is NO possibility of any backfeed to the incoming service, secondary lines, subsequently to a transformer and thus much higher voltage energizing the primaries, hence the safety concern to the linemen.

Well, I may have followed through with a safe code compliant installation utilizing that Miller welder, but it was decided to go with a solar/battery back up power, with all the appropriate accoutrements, code compliant and SAFE, with the capability to tie in that Miller welder safely to bulk or trickle charge the batteries when solar is off or its cloudy.

It is illegal, against code or what have you, as I know when working on these things, doesn't it call for things being tagged out, so that the person at risk, KNOWS its locked out, tagged out, cannot be energized ? Without the proper switching, sure people know if you flip that main while back feeding your service, this will happen, and most won't ever do that, but what about the mistake, what about the one time it happens, because its possible, as its connected versus, a closed circuit, when it should be open while a genset is on.

I don't know what other safety protocol line(people) employ when repairing overhead and similar distribution to prevent an accident, but what line person can work comfortably, (and people want their power back on yesterday) under emergency, inclement or dangerous weather, to restore power, with this scenario of someone not wanting to properly/safely install back up power equipment that meets the criteria to ELIMINATE any possibility of this SITUATION from ever happening, isn't that the point of all this NEC, code, and acceptable designs ?

I realize people will always say it works, and I'd never throw that switch, and in a dire emergency its going to happen, myself included if there was no other choice, that main would be tagged, taped off and the panel door secured at least, but that does not in any way make it RIGHT!

My experience is in commercial, low and high rise construction as well as correctional, health, educational and many mixed use high dollar construction projects, I know enough about power distribution to be dangerous, have been involved in high voltage 15KV and up splicing, all kinds of large building services, existing upgrades with temporary services built that would make your hair stand on end literally, have tied into the Con-Edison grid in NYC many times, and have encountered very dangerous situations, one thing I learned a long time ago, leave it to the expert designers, qualified electricians and those who are both experienced and properly trained, if you do not, you should NOT be surprised when the results don't turn out as expected.

I've been nailed by 220 and magnetized to a steel column, no it did not throw me off, it took 2 men to pull me off while they got nailed as well, its clear in my mind, I'd not be here today, instead my flesh would have kept burning, (still can see the 3 scars from those bare wires) and I'd have kept writhing from electricity passing through my body, its a miracle I did not die as both arms were locked onto that column, heart did not short out or whatever the heck happens to you, it felt like I was in the electric chair, and you want to know why, because some ignorant @ss$ole left a cover off an old thermostat, back when unit heaters were wired that way, with full voltage, thank god it was not the 440 to the big compressor we had. All it takes is one dumb ignorant move and you could get burned, fried, arc'ed or and or killed, I don't understand why people fool with this stuff, I know what it feels like, and know that it happened by pure ignorance, just walk away from bare wires, under a small shelf, where a person will reach someday, and walla ! When I think back, had I been alone, what an awful way to die, truly awful, flesh burning, you cannot move and you cannot do anything about it except take it,

Folks, don't be ignorant when it comes to electricity and safety, please !!!

John, I always applaud your detailed efforts to comment here on this forum, and the time you take to do it, no I'm not putting you up on a pedestal, that would be wrong, just saying, I personally appreciate the time you take to post and the good faith effort you make here, along with everyone else on this forum included, for the sole purpose of helping others ! In your case its always in regards electrical and legal issues, concluded of course, with the typical "John T Disclaimer", which I enjoy the most !!!! LOL !!!!

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John T

07-10-2014 09:17:18

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 Re: Generator Test Revisited RANT ALERT in reply to Billy NY, 07-10-2014 07:50:52  
Thanks for the kind words. Hey Im glad youre not putting me on a pedestal cuz I will come tumbling down and hard lol

Like all mortals Im often wrong but when a guy spends his life learning and practicing in a particular field I just try to impress on the Billy Bobs out there to just consider the possibility that person may know whats safer then an untrained inexperienced non professional, so I try my best to offer advice which may save someones life and then let them do as they please it go BUT IT GETS FRUSTRATING LOL so I have to rant at times, thanks for listening

Usual disclaimer......

John T

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