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BoDean
10-12-2007, 02:27 PM
I'm in the process of upgrading my home service from 100A to 200A. As the new service panel is going in the same location as the old, I will need to disconnect the incoming service temporarily. To this end, power company has installed a pigtail, exiting the bottom of the meter can. They did not, as I had expected, cut the little wire seal on the meter ring to allow me to disconnect power by pulling the meter.

This seems to me to be the safer way to disconnect power, as opposed to having to unwrap the eletrical tape they've placed on each of the incoming hot wires and unbolting each of the connecters that appear to be underneath the tape.

As a DIYer, I'm unfamiliar with the ways of the utility. Perhaps someone more experienced can tell me - does KCPL intend for me to disconnect via the pigtail, thus leaving their metering equipment undisturbed but putting me at risk of shock if I'm careless? Or does the installation of a pigtail come with the implicit understanding that I will pull the meter? If so, why bother with a pigtail in the first place instead of just cutting or allowing me to cut the seal?

I don't mind the pigtail as it will give me the few extra inches of SE needed to reach inside the larger new box.

jadnashua
10-12-2007, 03:04 PM
Maybe they expect you to install a new meter box as well, then those would go to it. I'm just guessing...

Do you need a new meter and socket to support the higher amperages?

BoDean
10-12-2007, 03:13 PM
Jim,

I do need a new meter, socket and riser as the old service (wire attached to exterior wall with no conduit or weatherhead) does not meet power co's requirements. I don't expect the new meter box to be energized until the power company brings in the new service drop, though.

BD

leejosepho
10-12-2007, 03:28 PM
Whatever the power company has done there, they are expecting only a licensed electrician who understands their ways to be doing anything more.


They did not, as I had expected, cut the little wire seal on the meter ring to allow me to disconnect power by pulling the meter.

They expext only a licensed electrician to pull the meter and to thereafter attend to the matter of the seal.


... as opposed to having to unwrap the eletrical tape they've placed on each of the incoming hot wires and unbolting each of the connecters that appear to be underneath the tape.

They do not expect *anybody* to *ever* do that!


As a DIYer, I'm unfamiliar ... does KCPL intend for me to ...

... have a licensed electrician do *everything*? Yes, you can be very sure about that!

BrianJohn
10-12-2007, 04:32 PM
There are a variety of ways service upgrades are completed, some areas the utility installs part of the exterior wiring..

Do you need to install a new service riser with weather head?


Typically in our area we would install a new meter can, service riser weather head, and ust the pigtail they provided to feed the line side of the new meter can, cutting the meter seal, pulling the meter.

Speedy Petey
10-12-2007, 05:15 PM
Bo,
Don't you think you should be asking the POCO all these questions instead of us?

EVERY area and every POCO is different.

got_nailed
10-12-2007, 06:16 PM
*** Would suggest reading this but do not advise anything in this post. ***

The more or less how you upgrade a meter; POCO will not install “jumper” cable.

Pull the meter
Take the house side loose
Tear out old service and reinstall new service
Set the new meter base beside the old meter base
After the install run a jumper wire from the new meter base to the old meter base and plug the meter back in.
Call for inspection
After the inspection POCO will connect the new service riser and then we come back and take down the old one


With the new meter pan you will need to put up new wires to feed the box. You need to look at the height requirement. These will be wired up as normal.

There “jumper” would be tied with the wires feeding the house in the bottom of the pan.

As far as having to pull the old wires out of the breaker box where there live is something I would not do. Having to install the “jumper” into the new pan where there live is something I would not do. You have to remember that the only fuse to protect you would be the one that feeds the transformer.

If you can live off a generator for a day then try thinking about this.
Cover the incoming wires in the old panel with a leather glove and some tape; this will give you some protection form live power.
Turn off the main breaker and pull out of all the old wiring and breakers.
Remove the panel of the wall and tie it out of the way.
Mount new panel.
Wire everything but the new feeder wires.
Use a large breaker off the old panel to your new panel using the main breaker.
Call and get the power cut at the poll.
Remove old meter pan, feeder wires to old panel board, and the feeder wires up the house.
Install new meter pan and wires.
Call for you inspection and they will call the POCO if it is up to code for a reconnect.

Either way you do it if you don’t pass the inspection then no power and you might have to get a pro to fix it before a new inspection.

*** In any way shape or form would I suggest this to anyone; but it is just something for you to think about. *** Just covering my as.

Bob NH
10-12-2007, 06:51 PM
I recently did an upgrade, QO 100 to QO 200, and it was pretty easy. You can adapt the ideas to your own setup. Steps as follows:

1. Installed the new 200 amp panel as close as possible to the old.
2. Connected 100 amp cables from lugs on the bus bars of the old panel to the main of the new panel. I was able to attach to the bus using #2 lugs (from HD) after turning off the old main.
3. Moved circuits from old panel to the new panel. At this point the new panel was being served through the old meter and the main of the old panel.
4. Laid out where the new meter would be mounted and ran 2" PVC conduit from the new panel to the point where it would hit the back of the new meter socket. You could use SE cable in most jurisdictions as it was all inside.
5. Ran the new Grounding Equipment Conductor to the Grounding Electrodes.
6. Preassembled the new meter socket with 9 ft conduit and weatherhead, and put 4/0, 4/0, 2/0 Al conductors in the riser conduit.
7. Arranged with neighbor for extension cord power for tools.
8. Scheduled changeout day with power company and electrical inspector. Already had permit. POCO representative gave permission to cut meter seal, because I already had permit from them.
9. On day of changeover; at 7 AM, cut the old service drop on my side of connectors using a pair of Fiskar pruning loppers with fiberglass handles. This was the only hot work, and not at all hazardous.
10. Removed meter and old meter socket and service drop. Removed old panel and temporary connections.
11. Installed new meter socket with riser where it had been laid out.
12. Connected preinstalled conduit from meter socket to panel.
13. Ran conductors from load side of meter socket to panel. It helps to have a meter socket with "lay-in" terminals and removable internal shields. Completed this at about 9:15 and called electrical inspector for inspection.
14. Inspector arrived about noon, approved the installation, and called the POCO for reconnect.
15. POCO arrived at 12:45 and reconnected.

The process worked because of all of the prefabrication and layout, and because all of the branch circuits had been connected to the new panel before the changeover was started.

hj
10-12-2007, 07:21 PM
They probably want you to leave the old meter and wires alone and install the complete new system and then they will make the switchover after it is approved.

Speedy Petey
10-12-2007, 07:37 PM
*** Would suggest reading this but do not advise anything in this post. ***
......
......
......

*** In any way shape or form would I suggest this to anyone; but it is just something for you to think about. *** Just covering my as.This is like posting information on how to build a bomb and then saying you don't advise doing any of it.

I know this is just my opinion, but it comes from expereince.
Other than someone approved/qualified, NO ONE should EVER pull a meter. Let alone work on live UNFUSED service conductors!!! To even suggest such a practice is extremely careless. Giving detailed instructions is even worse.

enosez
10-13-2007, 04:21 AM
In my area you need an underwriters certificate for the new instal before the POCO will reinstal the meter or do the hookup.
.

got_nailed
10-13-2007, 07:37 AM
Hj they have to inspect the new meter can and the wiring for it.

But now that I think about it you could install the new panel next to the old one and remove the bonding jumper to make it a sub panel. Feed it off the main panel and get it inspected. If it passes then do the meter pan and reinstall the bonding jumper.


Speedy I was trying to give a safer idea about how to do something that it looked like he was going to do a more dangerous way. But at the same time I was trying to let them know that this is not totally safe either.

Hmm a bomb. What kind I have the hole internet and know how to use it.

hj
10-13-2007, 07:55 AM
Here, there is a $10,000 fine if anyone other than the electric utility removes the meter seal. The reason being that without the meter, creative types will connect to the hubs with alligator clips and "steal" the electricity, or install their own meter between readings to do the same thing.

got_nailed
10-13-2007, 08:10 AM
You can pull it if there is an emergence. But you have to call you POCO ASAP. Most of them will send someone out to look like the cops or the fire department till they can get there (this is where I’m at). All the new meters will tattle when there plugged back in that they were removed and for how long they were out.

Where I’m at an electrician and pull the meter and put it back in if they have gotten all the permit info. As far as steeling power ever electrician I have seen doing an upgrade will pull power to service (meter removed) with a set of clips. They will run there tools off.

Have you thought about getting an electrician to come out and install a new meter / breaker can and service? This would give you a disconnect at the meter so you could do all your work safely.

Speedy Petey
10-13-2007, 08:17 AM
Where I’m at an electrician and pull the meter and put it back in if they have gotten all the permit info. As far as steeling power ever electrician I have seen doing an upgrade will pull power to service (meter removed) with a set of clips. They will run there tools off.That's how it is here. We have to be on an approved list.

As for "stealing" power, I have an inverter and two generators for that. Although I DO have a set of clips to use in a pinch. The time a contractor is using his clips is not what they mean by stealing power.

BrianJohn
10-13-2007, 08:20 AM
One does not need to cut the chessy seal to steal electricity. Utilities are stupid about this, there are many instances where QUALIFIED electricians need to pull meters to trouble shoot electrical issues and waiting for a utility employee is a waste of time.

got_nailed
10-13-2007, 09:18 AM
If you do some searches on the new there is a tool you can use to get the wire to come out so you can reuse them. I have never tried this but I have seen the web site and seen it done.

I know when they talk about steeling power there talking about a bit more than 8 amps on and off for a few hours.

Lakee911
10-14-2007, 08:43 AM
9. On day of changeover; at 7 AM, cut the old service drop on my side of connectors using a pair of Fiskar pruning loppers with fiberglass handles. This was the only hot work, and not at all hazardous.

I don't think that isn't hazardous, Bob. I guess you just have more balls than I do. :)

Jason

Bob NH
10-14-2007, 12:05 PM
I don't think that isn't hazardous, Bob. I guess you just have more balls than I do. :)Jason
Position during cut and insulated tool kept me well beyond the range of the hot conductor. Knowledge and planning eliminate risk.

Speedy Petey
10-14-2007, 03:15 PM
Bob, I respect you, but IMO using a pruning tool to cut a live wire is neither knowledgeable nor well planned out. :(

I am a FIRM believer in the right tool for the job.

leejosepho
10-14-2007, 05:14 PM
IMO using a [pair of Fiskar pruning loppers with fiberglass handles] to cut a live wire is neither ... the right tool for the job.

What is wrong about the tool that was used?

Speedy Petey
10-14-2007, 05:42 PM
What is wrong about the tool that was used?I truly hope this question was sarcastic.
Please tell me you forgot to add the little :p after your post.

leejosepho
10-15-2007, 03:32 AM
I truly hope this question was sarcastic.

No, I truly wonder what you believe was wrong about Bob using these:

Speedy Petey
10-15-2007, 03:56 AM
Wow! No comment. :eek:

Rancher
10-15-2007, 10:24 AM
The reason being that without the meter, creative types will connect to the hubs with alligator clips and "steal" the electricity, or install their own meter between readings to do the same thing.That's way too much work, just turn the meter upside down, they used to run backwards, not sure if they still do or not...

Rancher

Rancher
10-15-2007, 10:30 AM
Fiberglass tree limb loppers is exactly what it looked like to me when I had the electric company change my meter location, they did it all live, and did crimp connectors, and all for an underground fed panel. They did have gloves on also.

They were probably more expensive loppers...

Rancher

BrianJohn
10-15-2007, 02:57 PM
THE BIG DIFFERENCE. Cable cutters are designed and tested for the purpose, I DOUBT the trimmers were tested and DEFINENTLY not designed for the purpose. They could have had metal reinforcing rods in the handle, for one.

Rancher
10-15-2007, 05:28 PM
They could have had metal reinforcing rods in the handle, for one.Yes they could have... I've never seen them like that, but it's possible.

I agree you should use the correct tool for the job, but don't go overboard.

Rancher

leejosepho
10-15-2007, 07:14 PM
THE BIG DIFFERENCE. Cable cutters are designed and tested for the purpose, I DOUBT the trimmers were tested and DEFINENTLY not designed for the purpose. They could have had metal reinforcing rods in the handle, for one.

To say that pruning tool was not "designed" (intended) for cutting live wires is certainly correct, but given the physical capabilities of the tool and its known-potential use for cutting branches away from live wires, it would be impossible for me to believe the manufacturer did not make absolutely sure those handles were not conductive and that Bob did not know they were completely safe.

Who decides what is the right or correct tool for any job?

Some folks learn (the hard way) by trial and error.
Some folks (the teachable ones) learn from others.
Some folks assume manufacturers and/or testing labs know best.
Some folks gain experience from any and/or all of the above and, with knowledge and planning, are ultimately able to decide for themselves.

Have you ever seen a 7-1/4" carbide-tip saw blade mounted backwards on a 4" grinder? I hope not. Nevertheless, I had a certain job to do a few weeks ago ... and that combination was definitely the right/correct tool to use for that specific job on that day, but only *after* I had spent about an hour just holding it (unplugged) and going over every bit of possible trouble I could bring to mind (knowledge) and how to do what needed to be done without getting hurt (planning).

Have you ever seen a welder used to remove a bearing cone from inside a hub?

Truly, there is no better tool for doing *that* job!

Correctness and/or rightness of tools is occasionally subjective.

Speedy Petey
10-15-2007, 07:23 PM
Correctness and/or rightness of tools is occasionally subjective.
Maybe so....but NOT in this case.

480sparky
10-15-2007, 07:25 PM
Correctness and/or rightness of tools is occasionally subjective.

You could always be one of these guys::eek:

http://code-elec.com/userimages/pole light.JPG

leejosepho
10-16-2007, 03:44 AM
Maybe so....but NOT in this case.

Why not? What is your reasoning?


You could always be one of these guys ...

That is one of my favorite never-do-this pictures, but it is not in the category presently being discussed. Bob used a well-made tool to do what is was designed to do: cut.

Speedy Petey
10-16-2007, 04:22 AM
Why not? What is your reasoning?Because that tool is not made, NOR IS IT SAFE, for cutting live wires.

I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS IS EVEN BEING DEBATED!!!! :mad: :mad:

Cass
10-16-2007, 04:45 AM
While the loppers may be insulated and may have work this time, they were not designed for that use and I can guarantee they were never tested and rated for conductivity at all, never mind for use as a live wire cutting tool.

Something that worked today may not work tomorrow due to a minor change in something as simple as humidity where the tool was being stored.

How much voltage and amperage are they rated for??????

People die from electrocution all the time because they think that they are insulated while working with electricity and find out the hard way that they are not.

leejosepho
10-16-2007, 05:37 PM
I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS IS EVEN BEING DEBATED!!!! :mad: :mad:

There is no debate here, at least not on my part. I have only been asking what you believe was wrong about Bob's specific use of that particular cutting tool. Believe this or not, and along with whatever else: I am here to learn.


I can guarantee they were never tested and rated for conductivity at all ...

I will write to the manufacturer and ask about that. Once again: My suspicion is that the cutters were engineered to be non-conductive in the event of someone trimming near wires unintentionally getting into one.

I talked with a multi-licensed and well-seasoned electrician about all of this earlier today, and he saw no problem with what Bob did. In that electrician's view of things, the right/correct tool was used if the job got done sans any damage (even to the tool) or personal injury.

leejosepho
10-16-2007, 05:56 PM
Here is the question I just sent to Fiskar, and since we all know their cutters are not intended for cutting any wires (live or not), the question I asked is only about incidental contact with a live wire:

---
Greetings.
While trimming around electrical wires, would any of your loppers be safer than others in the event of nicking a wire?
Thank you,
Joe
---

Speedy Petey
10-16-2007, 07:55 PM
I talked with a multi-licensed and well-seasoned electrician about all of this earlier today, and he saw no problem with what Bob did. In that electrician's view of things, the right/correct tool was used if the job got done sans any damage (even to the tool) or personal injury.Well then all I can say is this licensed, well seasoned electrician strongly disagrees with him.
Not much more I can say.

jwelectric
10-16-2007, 08:10 PM
Not much more I can say.
Me either!!!

BrianJohn
10-16-2007, 08:16 PM
for me to believe the manufacturer did not make absolutely sure those handles were not conductive and that Bob did not know they were completely safe.

HORSE HOCKEY...All I can say in light of your ignorance in this matter is PLEASE continue to do this type of work YOUTUBE needs a few more OH LOOK HE's FRIED videos

Livin4Real
10-16-2007, 11:36 PM
BoDean,

I just had a new panel installed as well after a close call with a bad main breaker almost caught the house. Total cost including new 200a panel and breakers with install was $650 and the old panel was a complete rats nest. Electrician pulled meter himself and also ran new lines from meter. IMO opinion it was well worth it to pay a pro for something this involved.

jwelectric
10-17-2007, 08:51 AM
Who is KCPL trying to protect?

YOU!!!!!!!!!

leejosepho
10-17-2007, 05:31 PM
All I can say in light of your ignorance in this matter ...

Of what do you believe I am ignorant?

It is impossible for me to believe the manufacturer is completely ignorant as to the conductivity or non-cunductivity of their loppers, and it is impossible for me to believe Bob did not know he would be completely safe using them as he did. If you have any evidence to the contrary, please share it!

In any case, a customer service specialist at Fiskar has responded to my question by saying she is not aware of any of their loppers being any safer than others around live wires.

BrianJohn
10-17-2007, 06:04 PM
Ignorant of DUH ELECTRICAL SAFETY. There is little or nothing anyone is going to say to convince you of the stupidity of this so carry on as you wish.

Speedy Petey
10-17-2007, 06:36 PM
There is no debate here, at least not on my part.Obviously you misspoke here.
Looks like you are vigorously, and futilely, trying to prove your point.

George R
10-17-2007, 06:46 PM
Good Lord leejosepho, give this thread a rest. Why do you insist on arguing with a highly qualified electrician like BrianJohn. With every response, you appear to make yourself more ignorant than in your previous response.

Fiskar pruning shears are meant to cut branches, not electrical conductors. NUF SAID.


In any case, a customer service specialist at Fiskar has responded to my question by saying she is not aware of any of their loppers being any safer than others around live wires.

I'm sure this customer service specialist is also a highly qualified electrician. DUH! She probably doesn't know the definition of conductivity.

All this having been said, I believe BobNH to be a careful guy as well. I'm sure he felt he was very safe in doing what he did. Even if he "got bit" it would probably be 110. We've all had a bit of that. Bob is an educated, qualified guy, taking a calculated risk.

What you absolutely don't want on a DIY forum like this, is for future uneducated DIY Homeowner/Hacks reading this thread, is to think that it is OK to sever your service entrance cable with a pair of hedge clippers. BrianJohn is trying to tell you how it would be done by a pro with all of the proper tools for the job. PAY ATTENTION!


JUST LET IT DROP!

yarddog
10-17-2007, 06:49 PM
Obviously leejosepho has a problem admitting he might be wrong, but apparently safety is not one of his better traits. Note the small child playing under this contraption he gloated about in a previous thread.:confused:

leejosepho
10-18-2007, 03:09 AM
Note the small child playing under this contraption ...

That "contraption" is nothing other than a step ladder, and the nearby pipe is laying in the branches of a tree. The ladder and pipe are tied together, thereby making everything quite stable and the child's mother is watching from just beyond the camera's view. When the facts are known, there is no safety issue there.


Why do you insist on arguing ...

I believe BobNH to be a careful guy as well. I'm sure he [knew] he was very safe in doing what he did ... Bob is an educated [knowledgeable], qualified guy, taking a calculated risk [well-planned].

What you absolutely don't want on a DIY forum like this, is for future uneducated DIY Homeowner/Hacks reading this thread, is to think that it is OK to sever your service entrance cable with a pair of hedge clippers ...

Ah, finally! Those are the reasons I have continued on as I have!

Thank you.

Cookie
10-18-2007, 06:18 AM
Wow, Bob and Lee, you might as well use pot holders and a circular saw. I had been married to an electrical engineer for 2 decades plus and I know the right tools to use to cut a hot/live wire. I inherited the tools, shopped talked endlessly, and helped him in the field.

* I just put a quick phone call into his company, and for whatever it is worth, I was told, " wrong tool" for the job.

jwelectric
10-18-2007, 08:18 AM
That "contraption" is nothing other than a step ladder, and the nearby pipe is laying in the branches of a tree. The ladder and pipe are tied together, thereby making everything quite stable and the child's mother is watching from just beyond the camera's view. When the facts are known, there is no safety issue there.

What works and what is safe are entirely two different things. The pipe span is far too long for the pipe to support itself and the child is in danger. Should the right people get involved Child Protective Services would have a field day.

This is the problem with a lot of installations today. People think that just because it works it must be right and safe. The pipe in the ladder is one of the prime examples of ignorance and safety. The use of a pruning tool to cut hot wires is another example of ignorance and safety.

Now before someone gets their feelings hurt;
ig•no•rance: the state or fact of being ignorant; lack of knowledge, learning, information, etc.

Someone doing things such as covered in this thread with knowledge, the noun is then changed to stupid. Stupidity as I am using it here means; a poor ability to understand or to profit from experience


You choose which category you think you fit in but it will have to be one of the two above. No one in their right mind would allow a child to play under something such as pictured above.

As I look at pictures and hear stories such as has been in this thread I wonder how mankind has survived through the years.
Either there is a power much greater than mankind that protects or the evolution of mankind has started to reverse itself.
Personally, myself I choose to believe that there is a power much greater than mankind.
To quote an old cliché: “God looks after fools, drunks and little babies” and this thread is proof.

jadnashua
10-18-2007, 09:59 AM
Unfortuneately, medical science can keep more of the fools alive (I'm talking self-inflicted/induced damages here), so there are more of them around...survival of the fittest has its place. Sometimes they take the innocent with them, which to my mind is the real tragedy.

Speedy Petey
10-18-2007, 12:04 PM
All this having been said, I believe BobNH to be a careful guy as well. I'm sure he felt he was very safe in doing what he did. Even if he "got bit" it would probably be 110. We've all had a bit of that. Bob is an educated, qualified guy, taking a calculated risk.

What you absolutely don't want on a DIY forum like this, is for future uneducated DIY Homeowner/Hacks reading this thread, is to think that it is OK to sever your service entrance cable with a pair of hedge clippers. BrianJohn is trying to tell you how it would be done by a pro with all of the proper tools for the job.
I just have to add, this is my exact feeling as well.

leejosepho
10-18-2007, 05:19 PM
What works and what is safe are entirely two different things.

Not always. Some things that are considered "safe" actually work sometimes, and some things that even barely work can be quite safe.


The pipe span is far too long for the pipe to support itself ...

Then why was it still firmly standing against the limbs of the tree?!


... and the child is in danger.

Of what?


Should the right people get involved Child Protective Services would have a field day.

You crack me up! As long as we are on the ground, my grandchildren are at times right there alongside as my son-in-law and I work on our addition, and those boys have yet to receive a single scratch anywhere! We have some simple "safety rules" we *never* compromise, and my grandchildren are learning safety right along with driving nails into large blocks of soft wood.


People think that just because it works it must be right and safe.

This thread has hopefully helped to bring that kind of thinking into question.


The pipe in the ladder is one of the prime examples of ignorance and safety.

Hardly so. The pipe is not even in the ladder. It is leaning into the branches of the tree and the ladder is simply alongside.


The use of a pruning tool to cut hot wires is another example of ignorance and safety.

Generally, yes, but not in Bob's case.


No one in their right mind would allow a child to play under something such as pictured above.

The child was not playing either there or anywhere nearby. Rather, and after he had asked to go take a look, he was being given an opportunity to see and to begin to catch the idea of water in a well. Here is the child at play -- again closely watched and supervised -- the next day as I was pumping the well clear ...

Wet_Boots
10-19-2007, 04:42 AM
Given the human ability to misread and misinterpret what they see on the internet, someone out there may elect to use metal-handled loppers in a similar situation, and become a finalist for the Darwin Award.

When I read postings from guys who are about to dismantle a still-installed-and-connected-to-power pump and 'poke around in there' I start to think about it could all go horribly wrong, and I suggest they might be better off using their telephone and checkbook, and get the problems dealt with safely.

jwelectric
10-19-2007, 08:48 AM
You crack me up! As long as we are on the ground, my grandchildren are at times right there alongside as my son-in-law and I work on our addition, and those boys have yet to receive a single scratch anywhere! We have some simple "safety rules" we *never* compromise, and my grandchildren are learning safety right along with driving nails into large blocks of soft wood....

Here is a clear and concise demonstration of the difference between ignorance and stupidity.

I leave it up to the reader to decide which is which.

Bob NH
10-19-2007, 09:18 AM
I have smiled while watching this thread develop.

I cut the wires with a pair of loppers that I had already tested on larger 4/0 wire, that I knew to be insulated, with handles that were long enough to reach the wire in a manner where the wire could not reach back to me and I could not reach the hot end, also wearing new and dry leather gloves. I knew that I was not at risk.

I also watched the POCO lineman reconnect. He stood about 12 ft off the ground on an aluminum ladder, using both hands to work and consequently unable to hang on. He was wearing a pair of gloves but no arc-flash protection. I'm sure he must have been wearing EH boots. He asked me if the main breaker was off but he didn't check it.

He carved the insulation off the wires with a standard utility knife (what we used to call a "linoleum knife"), and he crimped on the connectors with a battery powered crimper. He had to hold the electrically hot connector in his gloved hand while he held the heavy battery powered tool in his other hand, all the while standing on the rung of the ladder without holding on. His unprotected skin and the aluminum ladder that he was standing on were a lot closer to the hot conductor than I ever was.

He was safe because he knew what he was doing and was using protective equipment and tools that he knew were adequate to keep him safe.

I was safe because I knew what I was doing and was using tools and protective equipment that I knew were adequate to cut the wire and keep me safe.

Cookie
10-19-2007, 09:37 AM
Personally Bob, anything that has to do with my life at stake, I check myself. ( the breaker) I would never take the word from anyone else. To be honest, even a layman myself, I could cite a few things that makes me wonder about this man's choices in what he did. Just my humble opinion. Regarding your choice of tools why not buy the correct tool, that way it eliminates most risk in assuming. Remember their are those who are reading these posts whom do not have the knowledge maybe, you do.

jwelectric
10-19-2007, 11:04 AM
Bob
I am not disputing you story as you were there and I wasn’t but there are a few things that I know.

Should this lineman have been seen doing these things he would have lost his job on the spot and not even allowed to return to the shop in the company truck.

I don’t know of any power company that owns aluminum ladders nor have I ever saw one on a power company truck.

Leather is not an insulator. A lineman will wear rubber gloves under leather gloves when handling live wires. The leather gloves are used for grip purposes ONLY!!

Every power company lineman I have ever witnessed used a bucket truck to work on energized lines. I have never seen a lineman use a ladder even when a ladder was present on the job.

The use of pruning sheers as a cable cutter is nothing less than idiotic to say the least but to use them to cut a live wire is far worse. To think that leather would protect someone form a shock is nothing short of …… well I just can’t think of an adjective that would fit the description.

Reading your post it is easy to see that you are fairly smart but to defend the use of pruning sheers as a cable cutter especially when the conductor is energized sort of takes me back and makes me rethink the impression I have of you.

I have been told all my life that there are three type of sense in this world. One is like dollars and cents, another is book learned sense and finally we have the most needed, common sense.
I do hope that anyone reading this thread that does not have the book learned sense will have enough common sense to NOT use a pruning sheer to cut an energized conductor wearing leather gloves.

I am looking forward to making post like this one (http://www.terrylove.com/forums/showpost.php?p=103559&postcount=4) instead of the ones like in this thread.
Please keep up the good work that I am used to seeing you do and please forget about posting the things you have done in the past such as you have described in this thread.

Speedy Petey
10-19-2007, 03:17 PM
Bob, this thread has NOT developed because of you taking a calculated risk or doing anything wrong. I personally disagree with your decision to use such a tool, which is simply my own opinion, and was castigated for it.
The thread then developed into why using the wrong tool for the job was sooooo wrong. The endless defense of this, IMO, is a terrible example to any DIYers (and some professionals) out there who might think it's fine to do this.


I will also say, if our linemen were to do as yours did they would get the same punishment JW described. That lineman should be ASHAMED!!!!!!! He was a complete FOOL!!

leejosepho
10-19-2007, 04:35 PM
The thread ... developed into why using [a pair of Fiskar pruning loppers with fiberglass handles already tested on larger 4/0 wire, [known] to be insulated, with handles that were long enough to reach the wire in a manner where the wire could not reach back to [the user] and [the user] could not reach the hot end] for the job was sooooo wrong ...

In fact, however, no such thing has yet been shown!

Nevertheless, we all certainly do agree that the typical DIYer (including myself) should *never* cut *any* hot wires with *anything* at all.

A good trainer can help keep people relatively safe without their having to do very much analytical thinking. Wittingly or otherwise, some of the posters here in this thread prefer that kind of approach.

Rather than merely telling people *what* to think, however, a good teacher helps people learn to actually do so ... and I personally prefer teachers over trainers.

Terry
10-19-2007, 04:43 PM
A friend of mine lost her husband, an electritian using an aluminum ladder.

The ladder came in contact with a wire, and that was it. Done.
That's why I limit my exposure, and stick to plumbing.

BrianJohn
10-19-2007, 04:52 PM
... and I personally prefer teachers over trainers.


While I do teach classes, I am here as a interested party not to teach or train but when I see something I see as WRONG I feel the need to state my opinion hoping that someone will possible learn from my knowledge, not as a trainer or teacher but as a professional that has expierence in this particular field.

Speedy Petey
10-19-2007, 06:54 PM
Exactly our points. I don't have to "teach" you anything Lee. I'll give my opinion and try to back that up with fact if I can, and I usually can. If I can "instruct" a bit, or provide a code reference I do. The code part is easy.
No one is "telling" anyone what to think.


Also, STOP quoting our posts with your interpretations Lee. If you are going to quote us do so then reply.



"a pair of Fiskar pruning loppers with fiberglass handles already tested on larger 4/0 wire"
Tested??????????





Nevertheless, we all certainly do agree that the typical DIYer (including myself) should *never* cut *any* hot wires with *anything* at all.This is the ONLY smart thing you've written in this whole thread.

Raucina
10-20-2007, 02:54 AM
Speaking of stealing electricity, I once dug up a tap on a 200 amp underground service.

It was a rather ingenious set up, where the 4" conduit had been sliced open and a "cap" removed from the top. Split bushings were installed over the 2 hots, they had been tapped for a set screw that when driven home energized the circuit and actually made shutting off the tap quite easy and convienent. The tap fed a water heater and a pump only.

You guys ever see stuff like that around?

leejosepho
10-20-2007, 04:39 AM
I'll give my opinion and try to back that up with fact if I can ...

This is the ONLY smart thing you've written in this whole thread.

... and do you have any facts to back that up?!

Or, what about this one:


... IMO using a pruning tool to cut a live wire is neither knowledgeable nor well planned out.

Generally speaking, even Bob would likely agree even though that statement was not actually true in his own case.

Speedy Petey
10-20-2007, 05:10 AM
... and do you have any facts to back that up?!
YES! It's called the UL White Book! You might think of thumbing through it!

Then again there's OSHA, or even the NEC.

I am truly astounded that you are stupid enough to keep defending, even encouraging, this practice so vigorously!
And yes, I am stooping to name calling. It is justified! :mad:

jwelectric
10-20-2007, 06:52 AM
... Speedy Petey
I'll give my opinion and try to back that up with fact if I can ... This is the ONLY smart thing you've written in this whole thread. and do you have any facts to back that up?!

Well Lee based on some to the statements you have made in this thread I am lead to believe that you haven’t said very many things that make very much sense.

Here you say;
That "contraption" is nothing other than a step ladder, and the nearby pipe is laying in the branches of a tree. The ladder and pipe are tied together, thereby making everything quite stable and the child's mother is watching from just beyond the camera's view. When the facts are known, there is no safety issue there. but here you say;
Hardly so. The pipe is not even in the ladder. It is leaning into the branches of the tree and the ladder is simply alongside.
You even point out to us that
You crack me up! As long as we are on the ground, my grandchildren are at times right there alongside as my son-in-law and I work on our addition, and those boys have yet to receive a single scratch anywhere! We have some simple "safety rules" we *never* compromise, and my grandchildren are learning safety right along with driving nails into large blocks of soft wood. When I then read your statement that;
A good trainer can help keep people relatively safe without their having to do very much analytical thinking. Rather than merely telling people *what* to think, however, a good teacher helps people learn to actually do so ... and I personally prefer teachers over trainers. I do understand that a child such as pictured under a ladder (between two and three years old) with a 20 foot plus pipe tied to it and leaned in a tree with a flexible hose connect to the end of the pipe, the closest adult at least 20 to 25 feet away is a prime example of keeping the child
relatively safe without their having to do very much analytical thinking.
Now I am beginning to understand why you are making this remark when someone makes the statement that cutting energized conductors with a pruning sheer is dangerous;
..Generally speaking, even Bob would likely agree even though that statement was not actually true in his own case.
I am beginning to understand that your analytical thinking brings you to the conclusion that if it works it must be safe. You analyze the safety issues through the process of, “it didn’t fall so it must be safe or Bob didn’t get electrocuted so it must be safe.

In closing I only hope and pray that this child has the metal ability to analyze the fact that when this pipe tied to a ladder with a flexible hose connected has pressure coming from the highest end that the force applied will exert a force that opposes the direction on the base of the ladder and there might be enough movement to topple everything to the ground.
I also hope that this child has the metal ability to analyze the fact that a service drop supplying a house has enough energy to burn his body to a crisp in less than a second. Based on your comments through out this thread (I have no idea what was being discussed in the thread where the ladder fountain was originally posted) it is obvious that you ability to analyze the danger in these methods falls far short of the dangers involved.

I must also make the statement that I pray that this child can find someone that does understand the dangers and is
a good teacher helps people learn.

BrianJohn
10-20-2007, 10:13 AM
In response to the illegal tap question.

In western Loudoun County the local COOP utility was swapping out meters from analog to digital with remote read capability. The meter guy pulled the meter and noticed the AC was still running.

Seems when the HO built the house he tapped the underground feeder to feed the AC, furnace and water heater. When he arrived home the utility had dug up his driveway and the sheriff was there.

To avoid prosecution, he was required to pay a estimated bill for the 12 years he had lived there a penalty fee and do community service.

As for Lee I know when stupidity can not be convinced with facts, common sense and safety.

hj
10-20-2007, 01:56 PM
In any case, a customer service specialist at Fiskar has responded to my question by saying she is not aware of any of their loppers being any safer than others around live wires.

I do not think she was saying that they are safe, but rather that they could kill you just as fast as any other brand.

http://terrylove.com/forums/images/misc/progress.gif

hj
10-20-2007, 02:07 PM
WE have to accept your description, but anyone using an aluminum ladder to work on live wires has to be deficient in the mental capacity area. Hands and feet are not the only way to contact the ladder. Any place the body were to make contact would provide a ground path, so he would need a rubber, not leather, suit also. And, only a very naive person would depend on someone's word that the breaker was off. I NEVER trust anyone's assurance that the power is off, and seldom believe the circuit breaker schedule inside the panel's door. I turn off the one that is indicated and THEN test the circuit to be sure it is off before proceeding to work on it.

jwelectric
10-20-2007, 02:45 PM
I NEVER trust anyone's assurance that the power is off, and seldom believe the circuit breaker schedule inside the panel's door. I turn off the one that is indicated and THEN test the circuit to be sure it is off before proceeding to work on it.
As I was reading your post I just remembered what Bob had said about the lineman reconnecting his service.

I also watched the POCO lineman reconnect. He stood about 12 ft off the ground on an aluminum ladder, using both hands to work and consequently unable to hang on. He was wearing a pair of gloves but no arc-flash protection. I'm sure he must have been wearing EH boots. He asked me if the main breaker was off but he didn't check it Just which breaker would the lineman be wanting to know if it was turned off.
Would it be the switcher at the substation?
To reconnect the service drop the only thing that could be turned off would be the primary fuse in the transformer.
Was the lineman expecting you to pull this fuse?

This thread is going from bad to worse.

Speedy Petey
10-20-2007, 03:36 PM
Just which breaker would the lineman be wanting to know if it was turned off.
Would it be the switcher at the substation?
To reconnect the service drop the only thing that could be turned off would be the primary fuse in the transformer.
Was the lineman expecting you to pull this fuse?Well this one I can answer.
They DO work live, but he wanted to know if the main was off so he did not make the taps while under a load. This can have VERY bad consequences as you know.
Same goes for simply plugging back in a meter.

leejosepho
10-20-2007, 04:50 PM
... stupidity can not be convinced with facts, common sense and safety.

So true. But, stupid only is as stupid does, and Bob did not do anything stupid!

However, it would certainly be very foolish for anyone less knowledgeable or less able to anticipate and plan to do as he did.
http://nacken.com/img3/jul1083.jpg (http://nacken.com/img3/jul1083l.jpg)

Terry
10-20-2007, 05:30 PM
I NEVER trust anyone's assurance that the power is off
hj


I never trust the homeowner or the panel markings when working with electricity either.
When I'm doing something like a dishwasher replacement, I like to touch the two wires together, making sure that if it surprises me, that my reaction to it doesn't hurt me.

Occasionally, there will be a loud "POP" and a flash of light, and the homeowner finds out that the panel has been mismarked.

And stay off of aluminum ladders.

Bob NH
10-20-2007, 06:10 PM
As I was reading your post I just remembered what Bob had said about the lineman reconnecting his service.


The lineman asked me if my main breaker was off. He knew that his line was hot.

leejosepho
10-21-2007, 02:49 AM
"... not aware of any of their loppers being any safer than others around live wires."

I do not think she [a customer service specialist at Fiskar] was saying that they are safe, but rather that they could kill you just as fast as any other brand.

Understood. While wondering about at least the remote possibility of hearing something about non-conductive handles, I had expected to hear some kind of caution or warning about using any of their loppers anywhere near live wires, but her response makes sense in the light of overal liability issues. My guess would be that a precautionary statement of some kind comes along with each new pair.

http://www.80srockphotos.com/fcWebApp/product_images/Cyndi-Lauper-01-200jrd.jpg (javascript:void(0))

leejosepho
10-21-2007, 03:14 AM
I am beginning to understand that your analytical thinking brings you to the conclusion that if it works it must be safe. You analyze the safety issues through the process of, “it didn’t fall so it must be safe or Bob didn’t get electrocuted so it must be safe.

No, not so -- logic does not always lead to truth. Rather, years' worth of mechanical experiences and several good teachers have shown me how to step back and take a clear look at something beforehand, and to then proceed and follow through in the very best way available and/or reasonably possible under whatever circumstances ... such as how to get enough equipment, tools and manpower to near the top of a large pile of building rubble to get a D-4 dozer back on its tracks. There is no "code book" or operations manual for that kind of thing.

Personally, I have much respect for tradesmen, and I do understand their occasional angst when someone like me comes along.

Here is another picture you might enjoy:

Mikey
10-21-2007, 11:29 AM
A couple of weeks ago a landscaper drove his Bobcat through the electrical and water lines from the house to a detached wellhouse. It turned out the electrical conduit terminated at the bottom of the meter box -- the installer had used the service entrance conduit as a convenient path to the main panel. So, to replace the subfeed, I had to unseal and open the meter box to get the old wire out. (I took the opportunity to penetrate the wall in a separate place for the wellhouse circuit, leaving the meter box "clean".) I called the POCO the next day to advise them I had broken the seal. They said no big deal, they'd replace it when the meter was read (the 25th or so).

Around here, we would never use loppers to cut a service drop. We carry rifles in our pickups for that :D.

Rancher
10-21-2007, 12:32 PM
Here is another picture you might enjoy:
Hey someone else invented an electric dirt sifter, I knew I should have patented that idea... And at least the kid is using a non-conductive shovel...

Rancher

leejosepho
10-21-2007, 06:13 PM
Hey someone else invented an electric dirt sifter ...

That was built as a worm harvester, but I ended up using it to clean our driveway when the guy who ordered it gave up on raising worms.


And at least [your number one grandson] is using a non-conductive shovel...

Wow, I had not even noticed!

Safety just comes naturally for some of us, eh?!

leejosepho
10-21-2007, 06:18 PM
I called the POCO the next day to advise them I had broken the seal. They said no big deal, they'd replace it when the meter was read (the 25th or so).

I tried that once, and I got a lecture alleging meter tampering! But when I asked the woman what sense it would make for me to call if I was up to no good, she relented and just sent somebody out with a new tag.

BrianJohn
10-22-2007, 01:28 AM
I have been cutting tags for 35+ years and never had an issue

Raucina
10-22-2007, 08:17 PM
I just replaced a 200 amp service that was hot and had no meter [and incredibly, no meter cover] for 32 years. Since the power company took so long to come turn it off for my work, and I had some welding to do on an excavator, i borrowed a few amps from their exposed hot lugs.

I figure they owe it to me for informing them of their screw up that should have barbequed a neighborhood kid over all those years. Almost charred myself when starting work, but on the outside chance they were totally incompetent, put a meter to it first. My wife would have been in the pink after that!

NOW..... got the new box in and tagged by building, but they are following new rules and want to see a house before reheating the box! We will see about that, but the moral of the story is big Bro POCo is not a good or reliable or particularly competent person to deal with.

BrianJohn
10-23-2007, 02:10 AM
Think about they have 1000's of customers that one falls through the cracks and it benefited the end user, no foul no harm.

And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts.

Bob NH
10-23-2007, 08:00 AM
And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts.

I find this humorous after all the hyperventilating, including from BrianJohn, about my using what are in fact well-insulated and safe pruning loppers to cut a #2 aluminum wire that was energized at 120 Volts.

jwelectric
10-23-2007, 04:55 PM
I find this humorous after all the hyperventilating, including from BrianJohn, about my using what are in fact well-insulated and safe pruning loppers to cut a #2 aluminum wire that was energized at 120 Volts.


Bob,

I am having a hard time believing that you don’t understand the danger that you took cutting a live wire with pruning sheers.

Your comment about it being 120 volts neither lends nor leads to the safety you showed in this thread.

You should know that the only thing that protects the secondary of the transformer is the fuse on the primary side. This could let the secondary hold indefinitely around 500 amps to ground fault. This is enough heat to raise the temperature of approximately 18,850 gallons of water 10 degrees.
Reference;
One watt equals 3.1412 BTUs
One British Thermal Unit (BTU) is the amount of heat it takes to raise the temperature on one gallon of water one degree.
How much liquid does the human body have?

Copper becomes liquid at around 5000 degrees Fahrenheit. This a whole lot of heat for the human body to endure.

I hope that you understand that the human body will carry current on an exponential curve and the longer the current flows the less the bodies resistance until there is a bolted fault. By this time flesh has burned completely away.

I also hope that you understand that anytime that there is current flow heat is produced. If enough current flows it can cause coagulating of the blood that will go undetected for days until a sharp pain is felt in the chest and …….. Well I’ll let you form your own opinion.
To aid in this opinion there are more deaths recorded as heart failure after an electrical shock than any other death electrically connected. Reference; Copper Bussmann Safety Basics

I do hope that every person that reads this thread understands that there was nothing safe about cutting energized conductors with pruning sheers.
I hope that everyone reading this thread understands that if cutting energized conductors with pruning sheers was a safe method then the manufactures of cable cutters would have went out of business a long time ago.

Over the past 40 years and thousand or so service changes I have done I have never cut an energized service drop. There is no need to and careful planning a temporary receptacle can be set up without any danger of contact with live conductors.

http://www.ctrivervalley.com/images-pictures-photos-of/Winter-in-Connecticut-Snow/2004-winter-pictures-photos/old_lyme_cemetary_1T.jpg (http://www.ctrivervalley.com/images-pictures-photos-of/Winter-in-Connecticut-Snow/2004-winter-pictures-photos/old_lyme_cemetary_1A.jpg)

leejosepho
10-23-2007, 05:35 PM
Bob,

I am having a hard time believing that you don’t understand the danger that you took cutting a live wire with pruning sheers ...

Over the past 40 years and thousand or so service changes I have done I have never cut an energized service drop ...

Well then, so much for speaking from experience, eh?!

jwelectric
10-23-2007, 06:00 PM
Well then, so much for speaking from experience, eh?! Yep! There is much to be said about "experoence" but myself I think that "common sense" carries a lot of weight also.

One thing for sure, there is a lot more of us "experienced" around that has "common sense" than there are experienced without common sense.

I suppose that one would require some level of common sense before one could reconize danger. What do you think?

leejosepho
10-23-2007, 06:07 PM
I suppose that one would require some level of common sense before one could reconize danger. What do you think?

Surely, and that common-sense recognition of danger in conjunction with both overall and specific knowledge, experience and careful planning left Bob both absolutely and rightly certain he would be completely safe doing exactly as he did.

jwelectric
10-23-2007, 08:09 PM
Surely, and that common-sense recognition of danger in conjunction with both overall and specific knowledge, experience and careful planning left Bob both absolutely and rightly certain he would be completely safe doing exactly as he did.

And that kind of thinking is the very reason the grave yard is as full as it is now.

There is no amount of reasoning or explanation that would even come close to making what Bob did safe.

This is like the guy playing Russian Roulette and didn’t kill himself on the first pull of the trigger. Well let’s keep pulling the trigger just because the gun didn’t fire the first time it MUST BE A SAFE GAME TO PLAY.
http://www.ctrivervalley.com/images-pictures-photos-of/Winter-in-Connecticut-Snow/2004-winter-pictures-photos/old_lyme_cemetary_1T.jpg (http://www.ctrivervalley.com/images-pictures-photos-of/Winter-in-Connecticut-Snow/2004-winter-pictures-photos/old_lyme_cemetary_1A.jpg)

Bob NH
10-23-2007, 09:49 PM
It wasn't unsafe! I knew the cutters were insulated far beyond that necessary to protect me from 120 volts, and that I could not reach the hot wire. There was more than a foot of insulated handle between me and the 120 Volts. The insulation was more than 10 times the insulation on a meter lead that is rated for 1000 Volts. It was also a lot safer than a pair of linemans pliers with insulated handles because the separation distance was much greater.

The bolted fault current of the transformer is irrelevant if the insulation far exceeds the voltage resistance of the material between the human. Even after all or your hyperventilating on the subject I would do it again and again because I KNOW it was and is safe.

You guys with your "I'm an electrician and therefore I'm holier than thou." attitude are acting like you are gods of electricity and everyone else is totally ignorant of how to keep themselves safe.

Maybe BrainJohn who gave us the statement that "And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts." can give us a link to the equipment and parts that are POCO approved and UL "listed for the purpose" of tapping into unmetered hot service drops.

jwelectric
10-24-2007, 06:38 AM
It wasn't unsafe! Bob, with the utmost of respect to you knowledge and ability I MUST once again point out that there was NOTHING safe about you procedure except the fact that you seem predisposed in proving that you were safe in your mind.




I knew the cutters were insulated far beyond that necessary to protect me from 120 volts, and that I could not reach the hot wire. There was more than a foot of insulated handle between me and the 120 Volts. The insulation was more than 10 times the insulation on a meter lead that is rated for 1000 Volts. Here again you make reference to 120 volts as though you think that 120 volts is less dangerous that any other voltage. IT IS NOT THE VOLTAGE THAT KILLS, IT IS THE AMPERAGE THAT KILLS.
The key to the difference in the meter and the pruning sheers is the word “rated”
As you pointed out the meter is “rated” for 1000 volts but the pruning sheers are not rated at all.


It was also a lot safer than a pair of linemans pliers with insulated handles because the separation distance was much greater. I don’t believe that I would say a lot safer than lineman’s pliers as both are dangerous. The cutting of the energized service drop itself is dangerous unless you have the proper training in such matters no matter what tool is used.


The bolted fault current of the transformer is irrelevant if the insulation far exceeds the voltage resistance of the material between the human. Even after all or your hyperventilating on the subject I would do it again and again because I KNOW it was and is safe. The available current at any point of contact is the only thing that is relevant. It is the current flow that MUST be protected against. It is the lack of this knowledge that makes some of us laugh when we here you make this statement, “subject I would do it again and again because I KNOW it was and is safe.”
No you were not safe and no matter if you try to convince yourself from now till the end of time, what you did will never be safe.


You guys with your "I'm an electrician and therefore I'm holier than thou." attitude are acting like you are gods of electricity and everyone else is totally ignorant of how to keep themselves safe. Well my friend when someone is trying to show you the err of your ways I suppose that one way of convincing oneself that their actions was safe is to attack the character of those helping.
The word ignorant means, the lack of knowledge or training
Your comments show that you are ignorant of the safety issues involved in using pruning sheers to cut live wires.
Stupidity comes into play when shown the err of your actions you repeatedly defend your actions. You have carried ignorance far beyond the point of stupidity.


Maybe BrainJohn who gave us the statement that "And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts." can give us a link to the equipment and parts that are POCO approved and UL "listed for the purpose" of tapping into unmetered hot service drops. By simply removing the meter, dismounting the old meter pan and moving it out of the way one can then install a single receptacle on the load side of the old meter and then reinstall the meter and have current to use for a temporary service. Yes there is more to it than what I posted here but then again I am talking to someone who is already sold on the idea that using pruning sheers to cut a service drop is safe.

Rancher
10-24-2007, 07:54 AM
By simply removing the meter, dismounting the old meter pan and moving it out of the way one can then install a single receptacle on the load side of the old meter and then reinstall the meter and have current to use for a temporary service. Yes there is more to it than what I posted here but then again I am talking to someone who is already sold on the idea that using pruning sheers to cut a service drop is safe.
The question was, parts for tapping into unmetered hot service drops.



Maybe BrainJohn who gave us the statement that "And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts." can give us a link to the equipment and parts that are POCO approved and UL "listed for the purpose" of tapping into unmetered hot service drops.

Rancher

jwelectric
10-24-2007, 08:55 AM
The question was, parts for tapping into unmetered hot service drops.
Rancher

In an unbridled attempt to justify the use of pruning sheers to cut an energized service drop and proving that the use of pruning sheers poses no danger if one takes certain precautionary measures what Brian said has been taken out of text.

Using the proper methods for changing a service one can have power through the process and no one is ever exposed to live circuits.

What has happened throughout this thread is a very stupid method was used to demonstrate a procedure to accomplish a service change and when the method was pointed out as being dangerous a couple of the posters has done everything short of embarrassing their selves to prove that the method posted poses no danger.

What Brian said was;
And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts.
As you can see the use of a unmetered tap was not mentioned. The quote from;
can give us a link to the equipment and parts that are POCO approved and UL "listed for the purpose" of tapping into unmetered hot service drops. was an attempt to redirect the topic from the use of lawn equipment being used to cut a hot wire.

The proper use of the old service can give the electrician some borrowed watts without anyone ever cutting the service at all and especially with lawn equipment.

statjunk
10-24-2007, 11:37 AM
It wasn't unsafe! I knew the cutters were insulated far beyond that necessary to protect me from 120 volts, and that I could not reach the hot wire. There was more than a foot of insulated handle between me and the 120 Volts.

Bob,

I have to agree with what's been said here that what you've done is very unsafe. Given many trials I think you'd eventually no longer be with us. The biggest issue I have is with your statement above.

How can you know the cutters were insulated. The only way I could understand your choice is if you did a full disassembly of them to prove there was no metal rods running through the handle. Not even the customer service rep would know that info so how could you. Even asking a customer service rep for a pruning sheer company wouldn't be enough. You'd be trusting your life to an $8/hour employee.

I'm glad you're alive.

Tom

Rancher
10-24-2007, 06:29 PM
What Brian said was;



And during service changes electricians always borrow some watts.

As you can see the use of a unmetered tap was not mentioned. How do you borrow some watts without an unmetered tap, you don't...you plug the meter back in, it continues to meter the power used.



Over the past 40 years and thousand or so service changes I have done I have never cut an energized service drop ... Which makes you the expert on changing energized service drops, do you even prune your own fruit trees?


Rancher

Cookie
10-24-2007, 06:40 PM
http://www.viewfrommywindow.net/archives/SGKEnergizerBunny_img.jpg


This thread is like the Energizer Bunny, it keeps going and going!

jbfan74
10-24-2007, 08:17 PM
http://www.viewfrommywindow.net/archives/SGKEnergizerBunny_img.jpg


This thread is like the Energizer Bunny, it keeps going and going!

To Nowhere!

Bob NH
10-24-2007, 09:39 PM
Here again you make reference to 120 volts as though you think that 120 volts is less dangerous that any other voltage. IT IS NOT THE VOLTAGE THAT KILLS, IT IS THE AMPERAGE THAT KILLS.

The available current at any point of contact is the only thing that is relevant. It is the current flow that MUST be protected against.

Well my friend when someone is trying to show you the err of your ways I suppose that one way of convincing oneself that their actions was safe is to attack the character of those helping.
The word ignorant means, the lack of knowledge or training
Your comments show that you are ignorant of the safety issues involved in using pruning sheers to cut live wires.
Stupidity comes into play when shown the err of your actions you repeatedly defend your actions. You have carried ignorance far beyond the point of stupidity.

By simply removing the meter, dismounting the old meter pan and moving it out of the way one can then install a single receptacle on the load side of the old meter and then reinstall the meter and have current to use for a temporary service. Yes there is more to it than what I posted here but then again I am talking to someone who is already sold on the idea that using pruning sheers to cut a service drop is safe.

I haven't attacked anyone's character. I have responded to the "holier than thou" attacks that call me ignorant without any regard to the properties of the tool that I used.

I wasn't using "pruning shears". I was using an anvil lopper with long fiberglass reinforced handles containing no metal and covered with plastic in the holding area. The resistance between the single metal blade and handle exceeded the 30 Megohm scale on my meter.

I suggest that you study Ohm's law (Amps = Volts/Resistance). It's the amperage that kills, but the amperage available through 30 Megohms (The scale limit of my meter) at 120 Volts is 4 microamps. That is about 1/1000 of the trip current of a GFCI. It was SAFE.

How do you dismount the old meter pan and move it without disconnecting the service drop? All of the meter pans that I have seen are mounted via fasteners inside the pan. If you haven't disconnected the service drop (I cut the service drop BEFORE I removed the meter and the meter pan.) you are working in very close proximity to energized meter terminals. That is a lot more dangerous than cutting a hot wire with 30-Megohm-insulated tool.

leejosepho
10-25-2007, 03:41 AM
This thread is like the Energizer Bunny, it keeps going and going!


To Nowhere!

There might never be agreement here, but that does not matter. What matters is that people are reminded about safety all around ...


I believe BobNH to be a careful guy ... I'm sure he [knew] he was very safe in doing what he did ...

What you absolutely don't want on a DIY forum like this, is for future uneducated DIY Homeowner/Hacks reading this thread, is to think that it is OK to sever your service entrance cable with a pair of hedge clippers ...

This thread will continue until personalities are no longer placed above principles and that message is clear to everyone!

Cookie
10-25-2007, 04:55 AM
http://fc01.deviantart.com/fs6/i/2005/064/c/0/Beating_A_Dead_Horse_by_livius.gif



http://www.energizer.com/advertising/playmedia.asp?media=blackout_30.wmv

Wet_Boots
10-25-2007, 06:22 AM
If the licenses out there have not been cutting any live wires, then they are probably aware of ways to accomplish a job like BobNH described, without the cutting of live wires, which rather paints the unlicensed amateur as someone who might forbear from posting about his achievements in electrical work, if they involve any procedures which might lead someone, reading about it on the internet, towards harm.

jwelectric
10-25-2007, 06:49 AM
I haven't attacked anyone's character. I have responded to the "holier than thou" attacks that call me ignorant without any regard to the properties of the tool that I used. I have not attacked your character; I have said that you have shown a lot of ignorance in you action.
Ignorance is the lack of knowledge and this is something that you can see for yourself in any dictionary.
Ignorance of the danger in using an unlisted and untested tool to cut a energized conductor and the continued “proving” of the lack of danger has gone far past the point of stupidity.


I wasn't using "pruning shears". I was using an anvil lopper with long fiberglass reinforced handles containing no metal and covered with plastic in the holding area. The resistance between the single metal blade and handle exceeded the 30 Megohm scale on my meter. Again you are showing you ignorance by trying to down play your actions by saying you used a “lopper” instead of “pruning sheers.”
Although I am no expert in tree surgery I am smart enough to know that the “lopper” is used to “prune” trees and the like so to call it a lopper or pruning sheer would not make much difference.
I am also very sure that you have the expertise to do listing and labeling on equipment and tools and to list them as either cat I, cat II or cat III. Which level of safety do you rate your “loppers?”


I suggest that you study Ohm's law (Amps = Volts/Resistance). It's the amperage that kills, but the amperage available through 30 Megohms (The scale limit of my meter) at 120 Volts is 4 microamps. That is about 1/1000 of the trip current of a GFCI. It was SAFE. Not only do I study Ohm’s Law but I also teach it. I also know that using a “lopper” that is designed to have plant sap flowing over it and use it where you will be having electrons flowing over it is not safe to say the least. Should something go wrong and the rivet that holds the two halves together and also lets it pivot could cause a flash that has the ability to blind, burn or even kill.


How do you dismount the old meter pan and move it without disconnecting the service drop? All of the meter pans that I have seen are mounted via fasteners inside the pan. If you haven't disconnected the service drop (I cut the service drop BEFORE I removed the meter and the meter pan.) you are working in very close proximity to energized meter terminals. That is a lot more dangerous than cutting a hot wire with 30-Megohm-insulated tool. Well it is as simple as removing the screws that hold the pan to the building and the straps holding the cable and letting the whole unit swing on the SE cable just as a child’s swing.
The key in you statement is; “working in very close proximity to energized meter terminals” and this can never be as dangerous as, “I cut the service drop” especially using a cutter designed for cutting plant life no matter how many times you check it with your meter.

There is a very distinct difference between the cutting action of a lopper (http://www.acehardwaresuperstore.com/ace-anvil-lopper-32-p-59542.html?) and a cable cutter (http://www.ridgid.com/ASSETS/5FA1652DF85649E4920FFD585FD5C807/1380_Cable_Cutter_3C.jpg) and I truly hope that you learn the difference before it is too late and your faimly is burdened with an expense and the loss of a loved one.

leejosepho
10-25-2007, 05:20 PM
If the licenses out there have not been cutting any live wires, then they are probably aware of ways to accomplish a job like BobNH described, without the cutting of live wires, which rather paints the unlicensed amateur ...

Whoa! Whether licensed as an electrician or not, Bob is no amateur.


... who might forbear from posting about his achievements in electrical work ...

That is not what he did. Rather, he responded to this at the beginning of this thread:


... safer way to disconnect power, as opposed to having to unwrap the eletrical tape they've placed on each of the incoming hot wires and unbolting each of the connecters that appear to be underneath the tape.

As a DIYer, I'm unfamiliar with the ways of the utility. Perhaps someone more experienced can tell me - does KCPL intend for me to disconnect via the pigtail, thus leaving their metering equipment undisturbed but putting me at risk of shock if I'm careless? Or does the installation of a pigtail come with the implicit understanding that I will pull the meter? If so, why bother with a pigtail in the first place instead of just cutting or allowing me to cut the seal?

Now personally, I generally agree with this:


... forbear from posting ... if [things posted] involve any procedures which might lead someone, reading about it on the internet, towards harm.

However, the arrogant and attempted trashing of Bob (and even a few cheap shots taken at me) as some kind of incompetent fool has not be an accurate, effective, educational, helpful or acceptable way to address that matter.

Wet_Boots
10-25-2007, 06:36 PM
'Amateur' is not a perjorative, but an accurate term to describe the individual using loppers to cut live wires. An amateur isn't devoid of skills, but may not be aware of standard procedure to accomplish a task. I was contemplating a complete rewire of a cottage I was residing in, including a new meter box, breaker panel, and service connection. At no time was I ever planning to cut a live wire to accomplish the task.

The criticisms may not be polite, but they are being launched from the technical/safety/whatever high ground, and are fundamentally unanswerable. Protest if you wish, but you can expect to be shouted down, and lacking the high ground, you lose in the court of public opinion.

There's stuff I do using a blowtorch, that I will never post about on an advice forum, because I know someone reading it, who lacks the experience I possess, may be likely do damage if they attempt the same thing.

leejosepho
10-26-2007, 03:01 AM
'Amateur' is ... an accurate term to describe the individual using loppers to cut live wires.

Not so. To wit:

---
Amateur (old Webster): A person attached to a particular pursuit, study or science, as to music or painting; one who has a taste for the arts.

Amateur (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary): one who engages in a pursuit, study, science, or sport as a pastime rather than as a profession; one lacking in experience and competence in an art or science.
---

"Amateur", then, at least can include knowledgeable and has no direct connection to selection(s) of tools.


An amateur isn't devoid of skills, but may not be aware of standard procedure to accomplish a task.

Again, not so. In fact, that is completely backwards.


I was contemplating a complete rewire of a cottage I was residing in, including a new meter box, breaker panel, and service connection. At no time was I ever planning to cut a live wire to accomplish the task.

... and that statement proves what here?


The criticisms may not be polite ...

... and why are they not? Civility can function well even outside of so-called "political correctness".


... but they are being launched from the technical/safety/whatever high ground ...

Mostly from the "whatever" plateau, I would say, and with very little, if actually any, mention of any technical data related to any tool allegedly more appropriate than Bob's as he has clearly described it.


Protest if you wish, but you can expect to be shouted down ...

We will see ...


... and lacking the high ground ...

I much prefer "down here" anyway ...


... you lose in the court of public opinion.

So what if I do?


There's stuff I do using a blowtorch, that I will never post about on an advice forum, because I know someone reading it, who lacks the experience I possess, may be likely do damage if they attempt the same thing.

Same here, and I would personally prefer Bob had never mentioned "Fiskar" or used the term "pruning lopper". However, he had free choice on that matter just as do you concerning your blow torch and as have I concerning any particular tool I might either use or misuse in whatever way.

Speedy Petey
10-26-2007, 04:09 AM
This thread will continue until [Lee's] personalit[y] [is] no longer placed above principles and that message is clear to everyone!Hey, I'm good at that quoting thing too.

Lee, you as bad as anyone here.

Can we let this crap go and agree to disagree?? Please!

enosez
10-26-2007, 05:35 AM
I say take a vote to see what everyone thinks!:eek:

Wet_Boots
10-26-2007, 05:47 AM
I think the horse was dead a long time ago, and whining about being criticized for irresponsible postings is counter-productive. And picking apart other postings with quoted excerpts is appropriate for folks with no positive contributions to make.

Cookie
10-26-2007, 06:06 AM
http://newmedia.funnyjunk.com/pictures/horse_wtf1.gif


Not quite...

jwelectric
10-26-2007, 10:17 AM
Whoa! Whether licensed as an electrician or not, Bob is no amateur. Up to this point I have only addressed the advice that Bob gave about the use of an unlisted tool to cut an energized conductor.
Then Joseph Lee O comes into the discussion and starts defending the use of a lawn and garden tool to cut energized conductors and defending Bob as not being an amateur.

I will not debate weather or not you or Bob are amateurs or not but I can debate weather Bob has very much of an idea of what he is talking about or not. Anyone with enough knowledge of electrical to give advice on how to do a service change out would have enough knowledge to know that you would NEVER;
5. Ran the new Grounding Equipment Conductor to the Grounding Electrodes. The only conductors that EVER connect to the grounding electrodes are 1- the grounding electrode conductor and 2- the electrode bonding jumpers.


However, the arrogant and attempted trashing of Bob (and even a few cheap shots taken at me) as some kind of incompetent fool has not be an accurate, effective, educational, helpful or acceptable way to address that matter. I have not attempted to trash You or Bob. The only thing I have done is elaborate on how crazy it was to use a lawn and garden tool to cut an energized conductor.

If it had been my intention to trash Bob I would have picked apart his method and misuse in terminology. I would have addressed the giving of advice on a site directed to the Do-It-Yourself or ever working on any live circuit. This in itself is a violation of the law as adopted by the federal government, state and local laws. (OSHA)

This is NOT a discussion of the knowledge of any individual person or that person’s knowledge of electricity.

What this discussion IS about is the use of a lawn and garden tool being used to cut an energized conductor. I have said and will continue to say that anyone that would use a lawn and garden tool to cut an energized conductor as well as anyone that would advocate such an action is a few eggs short of a dozen. Their elevator is stuck in the basement. They have a hole in their pocket and are losing their marvels. They are a few brick short of a full load. They have not yet earned the right to be called an amateur. But then again I am discussing this with someone that can’t see any danger in letting a small child play around a job site while work is taking place.
my grandchildren are at times right there alongside as my son-in-law and I work on our addition,... I suppose that if someone can not see the danger in something then they assume that no danger exist.

Rancher
10-26-2007, 02:50 PM
If it had been my intention to trash Bob I would have picked apart his method and misuse in terminology. I would have addressed the giving of advice on a site directed to the Do-It-Yourself or ever working on any live circuit. This in itself is a violation of the law as adopted by the federal government, state and local laws. (OSHA) I hate to contribute to continuing this thread, but jw, please quote me the OSHA or federal law that restricts a Do-it-Yourselfer from doing what Bob did... there isn't one.

On the other hand I did exactly what Bob did about 25 years ago, I re-located my Power Entrance Panel, but instead of doing it myself I called the power company because I knew they would do it for free, this may not be the case in all parts of the country.

But there is no OSHA ruling that would have prevented me from doing so, after all OSHA protects the employees of the companies that use tree loppers for cutting cable, not the general public.

I don't think Bob was giving advice on how to do it, but just how he did it.

Rancher

Cookie
10-26-2007, 03:34 PM
Rancher,

I think, that horse is for sale before he gets on his last leg, :D

Cookie:)

leejosepho
10-26-2007, 04:11 PM
What this discussion IS about is the use of a lawn and garden tool being used to cut an energized conductor. [Nevertheless] I have said and will continue to say that anyone that would ...

Which is it? Tools, or people being discussed?!

Also, your assumption that my grandchildren play nearby while my son-in-law and I work on our addition is *completely* incorrect. When they have "play breaks", they go with adult supervision to the sand box on the other side of the house.


Can we let this crap go and agree to disagree??

About what, or who, or ...?!

I got to thinking last night, and it struck me that pruning loppers pre-date any and all electrical tools by probably at least a century or two ... and what does that have to do with anything here? I just have to believe the early electricians did exactly as Bob did by analyzing their "loppers" and using them to cut wires (even hot ones) if their loppers were deemed safe, and that they continued doing so until somebody later decided to make some special ones with guaranteed safety and higher prices. I have decided not to take the time to do this, but I am willing to bet a compilation of Bob's description of the tool he used would be commended if his mention of the brand name and "pruning lopper" were ignored.

Speedy: Would you at least consider considering to agree about that? If so, I might just go ahead and put that description together for you or anyone else to review.

Cookie
10-26-2007, 04:32 PM
Well, Lee, my family goes back with electricity since Ben Franklin's time. I think, my dad held his kite for him. :)

Check out this nice site, where I spent many moons in Philly.
http://www.ushistory.org/franklin/info/kite.htm


I got to tell you, there just are correct ways of doing things to this date and it just doesn't matter how things were done days of yesteryear. What does matter is of today.

We are very fortunate with all the knowledge we have, fortunate to have all the data we can resort to for further knowledge and skill. Baaaaack in the olden days they had to resort to using some element of risk but not now. We learned by their mistakes.

Now we just simply know better. Don't you just agree with this?

leejosepho
10-26-2007, 06:07 PM
I got to tell you, there just are correct ways of doing things to this date and it just doesn't matter how things were done days of yesteryear. What does matter is of today.

We are very fortunate with all the knowledge we have, fortunate to have all the data we can resort to for further knowledge and skill. Baaaaack in the olden days they had to resort to using some element of risk but not now. We learned by their mistakes.

Now we just simply know better. Don't you just agree with this?

No, Cookie, and especially not in the context of this discussion. What is safe is safe and what is not is not, and that was no different in the past than it is today. Now yes, we might today have some larger accumulations of knowledge related to safety, but we also have alleged do-gooders presuming to do everyone's thinking for them ... and that can actually leave people more greatly endangered.

Oh, and did you happen to see MythBusters testing kites and keys a few days ago? Ben Franklin's type of string can actually pick up a measurable static charge even in dry air, and with some difficulty, they were able to get a very small spark to jump from a key while in a well-controlled laboratory setting. Overall, however, their experiments "busted" the myth that Ben survived a fingertip engagement with a lightning bolt!

Cookie
10-26-2007, 06:18 PM
What is safe is safe and what is not is not,
That is exactly what everyone has been very clearly saying.

jwelectric
10-26-2007, 09:12 PM
Also, your assumption that my grandchildren play nearby while my son-in-law and I work on our addition is *completely* incorrect. When they have "play breaks", they go with adult supervision to the sand box on the other side of the house.


You crack me up! As long as we are on the ground, my grandchildren are at times right there alongside as my son-in-law and I work on our addition, and those boys have yet to receive a single scratch anywhere! We have some simple "safety rules" we *never* compromise, and my grandchildren are learning safety right along with driving nails into large blocks of soft wood....

Now you are truly cracking me up.

The little arrow in the blue box beside your name will take you to the post that YOU made yourself. Only you or a moderator can edit your post so I do believe you are now trying to say two different things.
First you say that, “my grandchildren are at times right there alongside as my son-in-law and I work on our addition” but now you are saying, “When they have "play breaks", they go with adult supervision to the sand box on the other side of the house.”

I am inclined to believe the first post that the children do play around the construction site based on the pictures that has been posted.


OSHA or federal law. Rancher This should have been posted to say the “rule” as adopted not “law”
You are correct that the Department of Labor will not fine an individual for doing his own work and the reference to OSHA was to point out that there are special precautions that are to be taken when working on energized circuits. The safety precautions that are taken not the enforcement of the rule.


That is exactly what everyone has been very clearly saying. I believe he understands but is to bull headed to admit to it.