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LarryP
08-28-2007, 11:57 AM
Does anyone know of an advice forum for DIY electrical work? It would be nice if there was something even half as useful as this forum is for DIY plumbing!

SteveW
08-28-2007, 12:24 PM
Did you know there is an electrical forum here?

geniescience
08-30-2007, 11:55 AM
here is a great electrical DIY forum: http://www.terrylove.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=9

The big problem with electric people is that they deal with electricity. It warps their thinking.

Since it can hurt you, they get it drummed into them that all information and knowledge is dangerous to share, since any dolt can get a jolt, injuring or killing himself and burning the family and the neighborhood to boot.

All just by playing with wires after thinking he knows something worth checking out.

Here is a statement I found printed inside my front loading washer:
WARNING This information is intended for use by persons having electrical and mechaincal training and a level of knowledge of these subjects generally considered acceptable in the appliance repair trade. The manufacturer or seller can not be responsible, no assume and liability, for injury or damage of any kind arising from the use of this data.

IMPORTANT SAFETY NOTICE This information is intended for use by technicians possessing adequate background of electrical, electronic and mechanical experience. Any attempt to repair a major appliance may result in personal injury and property damage. The manufacturer or seller cannot be responsible for the interpretation of this information, nor can it assume any liability in connection with its use. .--.:( whew!


Electrical guys seem to be stuck on NOT helping DIY since the DIY reading it now or lurking browsing and gleaning in the future may not be up to that level necessary.... That is the Tedesco-like mindset; since he doesn't "know" that you are capable, he will refuse to share.

With plumbing you still have dangerous situations, but not instant dangers like voltages.

The best DIY forums will always be run by plumbers. They have the broadest exposure to risks so they can explain things with the clearest mind. Not too breezy and flip, not too suspicious and insulting.

david

Cookie
08-30-2007, 12:47 PM
Wow, what a comment you made. I was married to an electrical guy for nearly 25 years and he was never warped. Do you even know anything about electrical work or electrical people in order to make those comments.

Chris75
08-30-2007, 01:39 PM
The problem with electricity is you won't know you did something wrong until it is too late... it really is that serious...

LarryP
08-30-2007, 07:01 PM
Silly me. I didn't notice the electrical forum. Thanks for pointing it out.

frenchie
08-30-2007, 07:55 PM
Genie, you are so full of it.

Mike Whitt, electrical instructor by trade, answers any question anyone wants to ask here. Speedy Petey, Bob, Chris... lots of sparkies spreading their knowledge. I'm just a GC, but I share what I've picked up, too...

What bothers me, and a lot of electricians, is when someone who doesn't have electrical knowledge, posts a wrong answer that may create an unsafe situation; or when you tell someone that what they're proposing is dangerous & illegal, and they want to argue about it.

Electricity is dangerous, you know.

That makes it completely different from plumbing - unless you want to talk about gas lines or steam systems - which I note plumbers usually discourage people from DIYing.

The only part of your post I agree with, is that the best DIY board (singular) is run by a plumber.

Verdeboy
08-30-2007, 09:24 PM
The big problem with electric people is that they deal with electricity. It warps their thinking.

I disagree with singling out electricians and painting them with a broad brush as "warped in their thinking." As a self-confessed Handyman, I've been the target of some plumbers, some electricians, and most recently, one angry carpenter. The problem with some of these tradesmen is that they feel (unnecessarily) threatened by the likes of me. Or that me and my kind are a menace to society. They don't seem to get it, that those who would hire them, wouldn't hire me, and vise-versa. There's a place for all of us. Nobody's taking food out of anybody's mouth...:) I can't think of any more cliches.:)

Terry
08-30-2007, 11:30 PM
Pretty much the only time a plumber gets killed on a job, is when it crosses over into electrical. They might be flux or torch burns, but not much else.

One of my local inspectors had a friend that died in a crawlspace while doing a repipe.
He cut the pipe, and lost the ground for the electrical panel.
He became the ground and died.

Now that city requires pretty hefty grounding on a repipe.

There is a lot of good advice being given out.
I think guys like Mike and the others should be thanked for their help.

leejosepho
08-31-2007, 02:21 AM
... plumbers ... have the broadest exposure ... so they can explain things ...

I had never before thought about that, but there seems to be some truth there. Plumbers have to deal with related framing and wiring issues far more than carpenters or electricians ever have to deal with plumbing issues ...

Has everybody hugged their plumber today?!

frenchie
08-31-2007, 07:10 AM
The problem with [I]some of these tradesmen is that they feel (unnecessarily) threatened by the likes of me. Or that me and my kind are a menace to society. They don't seem to get it, that those who would hire them, wouldn't hire me, and vise-versa. There's a place for all of us. Nobody's taking food out of anybody's mouth...:) I can't think of any more cliches.:)

Gee, Eric... maybe you should try not thinking in cliches, then, and actually read what people post, instead.

The angry carpenter (I assume you mean me?) used to be an unlicensed handyman. Oops - none of your cliches are applicable here. Try again.


BTW, you completely missed the reference to Harry Buttle, didn't you?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eosrujtjJHA


Plumbers rock. If I had to start over... I'd be a plumber.

Verdeboy
08-31-2007, 10:38 AM
The angry carpenter (I assume you mean me?) used to be an unlicensed handyman.
Actually, I was referring to "Tool Addict" and wasn't even going to bring up our recent exchange.

As far as the cliches, you've only been here for a short time. There have been several threads started by tradesmen who believe that handymen do greatly impact their business, and they would like to see us disappear. Most of them have been plumbers. Although the point is only tangentially related to Genie's comments, it goes without saying that DIY'ers also include the so-called Handy-Hackers. So, his comments about how electricians feel about DIY'ers are also applicable to how electricians feel about Handymen.

My point is that not all tradesmen, whether electricians or plumbers or carpenters, etc.. are reluctant to disseminate useful information. And that the ones who are, are either worried that we will mess everything up, or that by giving us this information, they may be shooting themselves in the wallet.

frenchie
08-31-2007, 02:12 PM
Actually, I was referring to "Tool Addict" and wasn't even going to bring up our recent exchange.

Oops, my bad.

Since the topic was electricity, I figured...

Yeah, I know, I need to get over myself, right?



As far as the cliches, you've only been here for a short time. There have been several threads started by tradesmen who believe that handymen do greatly impact their business, and they would like to see us disappear. Most of them have been plumbers.

I've actually been lurking for ages. And I got jumped by Kordst on my 1st post, for winterizing my boss' house even though I'm not a plumber. So I know... I know.


Although the point is only tangentially related to Genie's comments, it goes without saying that DIY'ers also include the so-called Handy-Hackers. So, his comments about how electricians feel about DIY'ers are also applicable to how electricians feel about Handymen.

You would think so; but I find most sparkies treat DIYers pretty differently from handymen. So does the law.

...but let's not bother revisiting that.

How'd you like the deNiro clip?

Mort
08-31-2007, 04:16 PM
I got the impression that Genie was talking tongue in cheek.....kinda thought it was funny.

Mort

Verdeboy
08-31-2007, 08:33 PM
How'd you like the deNiro clip?
Funny as hell. The reference part went over my head, though.

frenchie
08-31-2007, 08:57 PM
I made reference to the character, during one of our... misunderstandings.

Something along the lines of "if you're being Harry Tuttle, they're out to get you already, so cover your ass."

...I keep forgetting how little-known that movie is.

hj
09-04-2007, 07:09 AM
I you have lived with an electrician for all those years and didn't think he was 'different", maybe the problem was you. I once replaced an electric water heater. After loosening the unions, I hit them with my wrench to separate them, (after years of working in Chicago, you learn not to touch plumbing pipes until you are sure they are not charged). When they came apart there was a spark across one of them. I found the lady of the house and told her that she might want to call an electrician to check her wiring. She asked me, "Is that the reason all the light bulbs just burned out and the TV is smoking?". I said, "Probably". And grabbed the console TV/stereo and put it in the front yard. Next I called my friend the city's electrical inspector. He discovered that the original builder/contractor had done his own electrical work and used the steel shell from a length of BX as the ground wire. It had rusted out, and the utility's neutral had broken, so the plumbing became the neutral wire. When I disconnected the heater everything in the house went to 240 volts, and anything that was not on a balanced load burned out.

frenchie
09-04-2007, 09:19 AM
HJ -

Doesn't your story, about an unqualified person doing the wiring, illustrates the opposite point? That sparkies are not weird/crazy, but rather that there's a reason they always stress safety?

speedbump
09-04-2007, 10:52 AM
HJ,

Thank you for not saying Electric "HOT" Water Heater. It always kills me when someone describes one with the word Hot in front.

You guys have to think about some of this DIY stuff a little further. How many of us Licensed guys/gals have become DIY'ers in other trades that we are not licensed in "even if" it was only on our own equipment? I think there is a little DIY'er in all of us. And always remember the cartoon with the the Plumbers Caption saying: I love it when someone turns a $50.00 job into a $350.00 job.

bob...

Old Dog
09-05-2007, 04:59 AM
I'm just a GC, but I share what I've picked up, too...


(Been on R&R 4 days...just catching up!)

Frenchie, you don't give yourself enough credit...
I have great respect for most of the plumbers/electricians in the trades.I always think of them as the "doctors" in the construction field.They have to do a good job every time or bad things happen if they don't.
As GC's we have to bring all the trades together in certain order and at the right time.We have to have a working knowledge of each of the trades to pull this off.When problems arise the trades look to us for solutions.
I personally look at new building/remodeling as if it's a chess game.I have to be thinking 20 moves ahead of everybody else.While I might not be able to quote chapter and verse specific codes related to the specialty trades I can sure tell if something has not been done to code.I bet you can too...

I believe in sharing knowledge with others but I have to take responsibilty for giving correct information.The problem is how the information is used/misused.
I think thats why alot of sparkys don't give out info.It's often misused...

Livin4Real
09-10-2007, 10:08 PM
I'm new to this forum and an avid DIY'er. I'm in the middle of a gut and remodel on our house that was built in the 60's. I have found several very useful electrical sites to help me out with my problems (which there were many with our house) but I think the key as a DIY'er is knowing your limitations. After taking a look at our main panel and seeing a big ball of non-code meeting mess I knew a pro was needed. When they arrived to do the work I asked if they minded if I watched and they had no issues with it and actually taught me alot in the few hours they were there and said if I ever needed any advice give them a call. Do I think this is normal, no. Most contractors I have dealt with aren't big on sharing info which I understand to a certain degree. I rewired all but three runs in my house and added an additional 8 circuits and replaced all outlets, switches, etc. saving myself thousands of dollars in the process. So I understand why some contractors are hesitant about giving up info but I also know from my standpoint that I will refer the contractor that took time to explain and help me out, to everyone who asks me "who's a good electrician?" and the next time I need a pro he'll be the first person I call. :) There are good folks out there, you just have to find them.

Brian

jwelectric
09-11-2007, 06:47 AM
Genie, you are so full of it.

Mike Whitt, electrical instructor by trade, answers any question anyone wants to ask here. Speedy Petey, Bob, Chris... lots of sparkies spreading their knowledge.


There is a lot of good advice being given out.
I think guys like Mike and the others should be thanked for their help.

Thank you both for the kind words. It is because of the gratitude that people like you show that I continue to try to help those in need of my knowledge.

The two things that scares me most about the “How To” questions are those questions that don’t get asked and the bad advice that is given by those with “I think I know” knowledge.

An example of this would be a two gain switch box. This box will have to comply with the rules of no less than eleven different sections of the NEC. Which one of the sections is the person asking for advice leaving out?

Then we have the old “handyman” or “electrician” that has been doing it this way without any problems for several years. This does not make a compliant or safe installation.

It has taken me 37+ years to get to where I am at today and there is no way that I can tell someone what I know in one post on a web site such as this one.

For those out there that think that there is no danger to life in plumbing I would ask you to please refrain from doing any plumbing.

Not far from where I live a family had a baby and decided to add a laundry sink in the bath that joined the bedroom they turned into a nursery for the new baby.
Uncle Bob (not his real name) worked in a local factory as a maintenance man and did the work.

He cut into the waste line next to the water closet and installed a tee and connected to the sink (no vent). The smell was over looked as being the diapers. Baby was constantly going to the doctor and no one could figure out what the problem was until Mom and Dad decided to not leave diapers in the room any longer. Smell didn’t go away so they sought professional help.
Every time the commode was flushed it siphoned the water out of the trap on the new laundry sink letting the septic fumes fill the room. The baby was slowly being gassed to death.

This is why so many states have adopted licensing laws for certain trades. These trades all have life safety issues and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

geniescience
09-11-2007, 09:34 AM
.... two things that scares me most ... questions that don’t get asked and the bad advice that is given by those with “I think I know” knowledge....this is good.

It's true that there's SO much that can't be said in one post, and so much left unsaid when a question gets asked; so much, that it can be a big dilemma.

david