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paulengr

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About paulengr

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  1. If you prefer Schneider, fine. https://www.schneider-electric.us/en/faqs/FA236739/ “An 80% overcurrent device, either circuit breaker of fused switch, will carry 80% of its rating continuously. Loading above that level will eventually result in the overcurrent device’s activation if maintained. The higher the loading level the faster the time for activation.” It isn’t an engineering thing. The trip curves are indeed the same and work the same outside of an enclosure but in an assembly the standard breakers are rated at 80%. It isn’t just that the breaker is overloaded (ampacity) but it will actually trip. I have had this happen first hand. What’s going on? It’s a panel heating thing. See below. https://iaeimagazine.org/magazine/2016/07/19/100-vs-80-choosing-the-right-ocpd-solution/ The issue is inside a distribution panel temperatures go up which changes the calibration of the thermal element. UL, NEC, and CEC account for this by adding 125% to continuous loads which is the same as allowing a maximum 80% load on the breaker, or 12 A vs. 15 A. This isn’t just an engineering or design thing. The first time I ran into this with multiple nuisance trips on a 400 A standard Siemens breaker in a panelboard. Not picking on Siemens here, that’s just what it was. It tripped multiple times. We recorded the current and found we were running at 350 A, on a mining machine that runs aroond the clock with almost no break at shift change. We changed the breaker twice figuring we just got a dud. I even pulled a “failed” breaker and tested it...trip curve was spot on. THD was very low...not a harmonic problem. It kept tripping. Siemens tech support pointed out the issue and we switched to 100% rated...problem vanished. I’ve seen this happen once in a while since then. It’s not just an obscure or bogus Code or engineering thing. This usually happens when someone especially an engineer designs for the rating (100%) and loads the breaker to 90-100%. Engineers don’t learn Code in school and mist industrial electricians don’t either. I do breaker testing. I get calls when this obscure trip issue happens. I usually test the “defective” breaker, especially after swapping breakers a couple times. In this relatively obscure case they pass but trips installed in the panel. So then we do power system testing looking for the actual load which is sometimes in the mystery 80-100% zone. That’s when you get all the highly credentialed engineers, electricians, and management people all upset. I get called names. Often they don’t want to pay for the testing and send the business to a competitor. Or they accuse the manufacturer of selling cheap junk. They just can’t accept the idea that a breaker can test at 15 A then actually trips at a lower value. Then they go around and around on this before they accept what NEC, UL, and the manufacturers are telling them. Going to a 100% rated breaker (when available), or sizing for 125% fixes it. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. First you confirmed a “15 A” breaker trips at 12 A if you give it long enough. Hence “continuous” vs. noncontinuous loads. Continuous is defined as 3+ hours. See this from the horses mouth: https://www.ul.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/CircuitBreaker_MG.pdf See section 38. Miniature molded case breakers under 250 V cannot be 100% rated at 15 A. For normal cases the “15 A” rating applies. It might take 3 hours (Code maximum) to trip at 80% but it will get there eventually. I can personally confirm some brands are more aggressive about the 80% rule than others. See for instance the trip curves for Siemens QPs used in residential panels: https://w3.usa.siemens.com/download-center/default.aspx?pos=details_mobile&fct=downloadasset&assetid=2218136&page=1&search_str=&languagefilter=&displayfiltercolumn=&displayfiltervalue=&language=en&datapool=&sortcolumn=&sortorder=ascending& The curve only goes to 10,000 seconds but it is obviously trending towards tripping at 80% eventually. This is one of the least aggressive breakers out there as far as the 80% rule, The list I posted is for AFCI, not GFCI. Since new construction AFCI must be combination (AFCI+GFCI) and trust me, you want that version of you must install an AFCI, it sort of back doors GFCI into areas most people never considered. The general list for GFCI is bathrooms, garage and outbuildings, outside receptacles, unfinished basements and crawl spaces, kitchens, laundry, wet bars, and around pools. As the commenter said, almost any place associated with water or moisture. But there are almost more exceptions than rules for each of these so don’t take this list as gospel without reading the Code closely. For instance in kitchens it is for receptacles feeding a dishwasher, countertop areas, and “within six feet of a sink”. Not required elsewhere such as a refrigerator (if more than six feet from the sink) or over the counter microwaves. So you need both. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  3. Lots of misinformation here. A breaker is no longer just a breaker. There are three different devices: breakers, GFCIs, AFCIs, and they detect and do different things. There is no one size fits all. I’ve “fixed” a lot of situations where somebody felt they were doing the right thing for instance by putting in combination AFCIs (and the moron inspector pushed for this) for ALL breakers in a machine shop! Not only is it not required but it caused all kinds of problems. First a 15 A breaker is not 15 A. Actually they are rated to trip between 80 and 100% of that number so at 12-15 A after a while (generally minutes). This is due to a small heating element that heats up and bends a bimetallic strip until it trips due to an overload which based on the description isn’t happening. So a tool rated for a 15 A circuit will be 12 A max. A true 15 A tool has one prong 90 degrees from the other one so it can only plug into a 20 A receptacle and can go up to 16 A. I’ve seen a few IT UPS systems with it. Using a 20 A breaker and 15 A receptacles or 20 A receptacles (these are dual rated) and heavier wire is Code and often done in garages and kitchens for a little extra margin but that’s not your issue. It’s easy to do and a cheap upgrade but doesn’t solve an issue that’s not overload. Second standard breakers are thermal-magnetic. There is a solenoid too that is set so that if the current exceeds 10 times the rated current so 150 A, it trips as soon as possible, generally in about 1/60th of a second. In industrial systems this is adjustable but this situation is residential where it isn’t. During starting the coils in the motor have to build up a magnetic field. At that point it’s just a coil of wire so it’s almost a dead short. There is an initial inrush that is very high, up to 17 times rated current by Code but I’ve measured some European motors at 22 times. These are very problematic with today’s industrial plant breakers. The inrush current is independent of the load. Industrially with faster breakers in common use these days as well as very high energy efficient motors with very high inrush, nuisance tripping is a common issue. But on ordinary breakers without microprocessor tripping (under 100 A) this is not an issue. Once this passes the motor is stalled (0 speed) so it pulls heavy starting currents. Stall current is still very high, 6-10 times rated current, but it’s low enough the breaker won’t trip. That’s a hint why the breaker magnetic trip is 10 times the rating, to avoid motor stall currents. On most motors within about 2-6 seconds it gets up to speed and the current drops down to nameplate or less. This will not trip the breaker normally because it takes time for the wire (and the breaker heater) to warm up so these initial surges go through without causing a trip except in a true overload condition say with a stalled motor or too many things plugged in. So inrush and stall should not be a factor and measuring “peak” or “inrush” current is just going to confuse things unless it finds a shorted motor coil. The GFCI comments are getting there but way off. A GFCI has two current sensors. One is on the hot and one on the neutral. Ground is not monitored and voltage has nothing to do with it. If the hot and neutral currents differ by even a few milliamperes (around 0.010 A but I forgot the exact number) again in about 1/60th if a cycle it trips. Inductive loads work just fine. The trip circuit is very simple but GFCIs tend to drift out of calibration pretty easily especially as cheap and mass produced as they are. The problem is it takes very little leakage to set the GFCI off so even very subtle problems are hard to spot on top of cheaply built GFCIs. As motors age the varnish gets cracked and crazed from heating and cooling. Then moisture and dirt gets in the cracks causing leaks which trips the GFCI but is really hard to diagnose with an ordinary meter. You need an insulation resistance meter known in the trade by the most famous brand name, Megger. Finally the latest one and this is a nightmare is the AFCI. An arcing fault has a minimum arc voltage which is pretty high when the arc ignites. Then as the current (not voltage) goes through zero (AC does this 120 times per second) the arc goes out then restrikes again as the voltage gets high enough. The current waveform looks like a squarish wave because of this on/off pattern. Simple electrical circuits won’t work. Various microprocessor programs are used to detect it. This explains the price...you are buying a computer stuffed in a breaker. There are lots of things even just semi-slow starters or the very quick current increase on starting that the AFCI often confuses so there are lots of nuisance trips with these. The worst are variable speed drives that basically have a “rabbit ear” shaped current that...surprise...looks an awful lot like an arc waveform. Supposedly GE has some industrial AFCIs that don’t trip with variable speed drives but my success rate on making one work is 0.0% and I’m a drives specialist for a motor shop! If you have one on your garage, get rid of it! It is not Code required for a reason in that location. The requirement is: “All 120 volt, single-phase, 15- or 20-amp branch circuits supplying outlets [includes both lighting outlets and receptacle outlets] and devices [including switches] installed in dwelling unit kitchens, family rooms, dining rooms, living rooms, parlors, libraries, dens, bedrooms, sunrooms, recreation rooms, closets, hallways, laundry rooms, or similar rooms or areas shall be protected.” Garages, shops, and outdoor locations are purposely not on the list. That doesn’t mean GFCI might be required and as I mentioned earlier, that’s not an issue. So suggestions are: 1. Check if it’s GFCI, AFCI, or regular breaker. 2. If it’s AFCI try plugging it in somewhere else with a GFCI. If it works, the issue is improper installation. Replace AFCI with GFCI. Get a credit for it. AFCIs are double or triple the cost of GFCI. If it trips, there is something wrong with the tool. Replace or repair. 3. If it’s GFCI again try somewhere else. Otherwise find an electrician friend with a Megger and test it. If it passes, defective GFCI. Replace. Again trying somewhere else may work,too. The trick is you’re getting an “instantaneous” trip but it’s unclear if it’s an electrical short, ground fault, or arcing fault, or a nuisance trip. Need to narrow down the cause. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  4. Finally found something close and the same application. Only 150 lb. capacity though. Also a bunch of cool and considerably more expensive ones from Salesmaker. https://salesmaker-carts.myshopify.com/products/294pc-cart This one is pretty good and except for the price exactly what I was looking for. https://rhinotufftools.com/electrician-utility-cart/ Might be buying the Olympia. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  5. That's a folding table strapped on a cart. I'm thinking more of when you are doing testing on a long line of machinery. This is particular important with some of them that are sensitive to mechanical shock when they are powered up. With a cart I just roll the testing equipment from one piece of equipment to the next. With a table I have to drag it and often the dragging is anything but smooth. With a dolley which is the other half of the Festool, I end up tipping the "table". I have all 3 pieces of equipment now. Just would prefer a folding cart but can't find one. The closest I have is my wife has collapsible garden wagons which could work. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  6. Never done it. Manual doesn't mention it. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  7. There are good carts out there and good folding tables (no wheels), The classic Rubbermaid carts don't collapse so they take a huge amount of space in the truck. The tables collapse but don't have wheels. Is there a wheeled table or folding cart out there? Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  8. It’s all about battery management. If you can work corded or pneumatic, do it! It’s vastly cheaper. Then brand doesn’t matter at all. I work out of my truck and often do jobs on circuit breakers so corded is a huge pain for me. e have a whole slew of mid grade brands Rigid, Porter Cable, HPT. They are just as good as the premium brands but much cheaper. But you won’t find a Hole Hawg or a PEX expander in their tool line. So I look at it this way. If I can buy the 5 tool combo kit and this contains every tool I need, don’t buy Milwaukee! You are wasting your money. HPT or Porter Cable is just as good without the huge premium price. My father in law who is more of a high end DIY was happier at Christmas with the Rigid combo set over Dewalt and Milwaukee. Chances are he will never need a specialty tool or if he does, renting makes more sense. But if you need cordless specialty tools like a high torque 1/2” or larger impact wrench, PEX Expander, right angle drill, and so on but you don’t use these tools constantly so buying a complete separate charger and batteries to support the tool doesn’t make sense at over $150 for two batteries and a charger, then you should seriously consider Milwaukee, Dewalt, or Makita. The final factor is your trade. Milwaukee caters specifically to plumbers and electricians. Recently they’ve surpassed Dewalt in many areas for industrial mechanical work. They make excellent saws and but hands down Dewalt is the better way to go for carpenters as an example. It changes over time. Pre brushless motors, mechanics were better suited with Dewalt. Back in the days of NiCd Makita was top of the line. Dewalt was pretty on a construction site but their motors and batteries constantly burned up. And all during that time Milwaukee was king of corded specialty tools. Most guys call it a Sawzall no matter who the brand is and they were the premium branded heavy duty D handle drill but I would never have bought a Milwaukee anything with batteries. Right now I’m heavily invested in Milwaukee but I wouldn’t hesitate to rotate it out if somebody can match or beat them. It’s not the first time I’ve jumped brands. My Milwaukee tools are in Dewalt Toughsystem boxes because I couldn’t justify paying twice as much to color coordinate my tools. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  9. I used to live on the shore of Lake Superior. We’d get a week of -20 for a high. So this is how guys that work outside a lot do it there. I don’t live there now but I still practice cold management. The trick is to first get a good thin glove. Aka liner glove. Something knit. There are so many good industrial gloves just pick one that you like. Go for snug but not too tight and not too lose fit, even when your hands swell. Do not use nitriles or waterproof gloves as liners. Wet hands get cold 10 times faster. Air is an insulator. Water is a conductor. Warm and dry is the answer on the liner glove. The best insulation invented so far is aerogel because it’s 99.99% trapped air. Gloves are the same way. The ones with more solid material (leather) are not as insulative as good knit gloves. So there is a trade off between warmth and dexterity (thin). So it should be no surprise then that there is no material that insulates better than plain old air so don’t expect a $50 thinsulate glove to outperform a $5 knit industrial glove because all you are paying for is the stuff between the air molecules which should be as little as possible, and the more you pay for the thicker and more useless the glove becomes. If you want get the cut resistant ones but some of the higher level cut resistance uses steel or more solid materials so watch out. TSC sells a decent one of these. At level 3 it takes effort and multiple passes to hack through the glove with a razor knife. Level 5 just dulls the knife but the insulation value is compromised too so level 2 or 3 is what you want for winter as a liner. Demolition gloves should be outer gloves if you really need those. Now get three. These gloves are cheap. Don’t spend over $5-10 per pair and you can get by cheaper than that. A lot of guys buy the $10 for 10 Jersey gloves. In my opinion you can get much better for a couple bucks more. Buy at the local industrial supply or farm store.. if you find one you like then switch to Zoro or Amazon. Then get a good heavy work mitten and wear it over the liner glove. Make sure the mitten comes off easy so when you try it on put on another (liner) glove first. The trapped air between the gloves adds to the insulation and the mitten helps keep your fingers warm. In upper Wisconsin and Michigan they are called choppers. Get one with leather palms and thumb. Some guys bought military surplus gloves or mittens but I haven’t seen those in 20 years. These are much harder to find outside of the Midwest so if you can’t get mittens go for the biggest, bulkiest gloves you can. If you are working anything with liquids that is wet or greasy or oily where it will soak the glove. Then you need to switch off for a pair or nitrile or PVC coated gloves as the outer glove. I like the “fireball” glove if they still sell it but I never see those around here. This is usually a separate special glove since it stays permanently greasy even after wiping them off regularly. The insulation value of all of these gloves is awful. Also don’t buy really puffy furry lined ones because they interfere with grip. The best ones have a knit glove that is fairly thick but rubber coated. It is going to smell. Get used to it. It will smell worse with grease or hydraulic fluid on it. Get some rags too to wipe stuff down. Now put one liner pair in the house or truck to dry. Put the second pair in an inner pocket where they are there if you need them. Put the third pair on. Put the heavy outer mitten or glove on over that. When you are doing heavy work carrying materials, walking from place to place, using tools like hammers, standing, or if your hands are getting stiff, wear the mittens. Wear the outer glove wiping things down too. It’s really important that the inner glove stays dry. Then for detailed work first get everything together and laid out for the job before you start. Then slip the mittens off in your pockets. Use the more “inner” pockets that go down inside your jacket so they stay warm, not surface/outer pockets but the mittens get nasty so don’t put them in “clean” inside pockets. Do what you need to do quickly and efficiently because you have limited working time. Realistically in negative temperatures you can get about 15-20 minutes of work done at a run before it’s time to warm your hands back up again. On really cold days you work around the idea that you have limited time out of the mittens. On warm days it’s the opposite. You have to dump the mittens if your hands are overheating so you don’t sweat or just use the liner gloves or buy another pair of “all in ones” for those days. Down to about 20 degrees the somewhat thicker knit industrial gloves or the leather palmed sewn gloves do fine. Get in a habit of putting the big gloves back on every chance you get. As you are working with them off you sort of get a sense of timing. Don’t let your hands get any colder than necessary because it takes that much longer to warm up. You can start to feel your hands get stiff and losing feeling, grip, and dexterity. As you work you sort of have to decide how long you can keep going before it’s time for a break. There is nothing more frustrating than fighting to finish a job when your hands are too cold to start a nut or a screw. If (when) the liner gloves get wet from sweat or water switch off with the pair you stuffed into an inside pocket earlier. At your first opportunity lay the wet pair out to dry some place warm hopefully rotating them with the pair that was laid out to dry. So that’s five pairs of gloves. My truck has at least that many in it in winter. Doing electrical and mechanical maintenance destroys gloves so I go through a lot of them. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  10. paulengr

    DS100 vs Ds150

    I put all my wrenches in a roll and glad I did. Drills are in the coffee cup thing Viking is one brand on Amazon. Look for jobber length drills, no gold plated garbage but real HSS. I keep the larger and loose and specialty drills in the lid trays. In the DS130. The drill, side handle, and coffee cup holder just fit in the open area in the middle of the box. In a DS150 you'd just take out the middle bins to get the same thing. I put the sockets in Grip Tools round magnetic trays first time. On the standard sockets they work great. On deep well sockets and socket like items like hex drivers not so much. The sockets get loose and go everywhere when you tilt the box. I've gone back to strips. I work service work so I need a slot for every socket or I'd lose half of them on jobs in a month. I don't always want them back when they fall in a raw sewage tank but most of the time they go back in the box. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  11. Uhh fuel cells are real. An alcohol breath tester is a fuel cell. It's just that high efficiency ones cost way too much to be practical most places. The space shuttle batteries were fuel cells due to space limits. Paslodes and CO2 cartridges are pretty close too. The nuclear stuff works but not practical. Can't improve on lead shielding nor shrink it down. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  12. Drill a hole in it and wrap the tool to the cord. Like a chuck...never lost. On cordless can't help you there. Keep a dedicated tool box (L-Boxx, Tough system, pack out, t stak, etc.) with your bits. Wrench goes in there too and goes right back in the box with the bits when not in use. Never lost. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  13. paulengr

    DS100 vs Ds150

    The DS130 and 150 bins aren't compatible either. I sort of kitted my tools. So the impact, wrenches, extensions, and sockets go in a 130 that I took the bins out of. I keep some specialty sockets in the top racks and the rest in socket strips. Wrenches in a wrench roll. The drill, bits, and half of my self tapping screws goes in a DS150. Drill index is a round coffee cup type and firs with drill. One bin has concrete anchors. One has magnetic socket drivers and step drills. Drywall screws in the other 2. One top bin holds the other loose bits, screw drivers, etc. The other holds an assortment of self tapping screws. One DS130 holds the larger crimp on lugs. All bins in it. Medium holds the down straps, chain, etc. This one isn't as useful as it looks so I keep this stuff in it. Large cart/tool box holds chargers, extension cord, hammer, long handle impact screw drivers, rubber and leather high voltage gloves, small sledge hammer. Tote bin holds my tool belt so it doesn't go everywhere. Then at the job site I put the belt on and put materials in the tote bin. Just bought two more DS130s and two more tote bins. All the boxes except the one tote bin go in the truck bed right now. If I had a choice, buy the 130s. You can always take out bins and it's better built for about the same price. My plan is to move the grinder to a DS130 and make the other one a bolt bin. Thinking of moving my overnight supplies to the tote so it stacks nicely in the truck. The other tote is for small bags and boxes like cable the organizer, tape and cutter/stripper bag, crimper, etc. I work at a motor shop. Some jobs are more electrical, some are wrench turning. So the idea is I can just grab one box for drilling, one for wrenching, one for lugs, etc. I get accused of having half the truck in my tool boxes and it's probably true but the other guys load up a cart with tools and roll it in. But I don't have to unload and reload everything. It all stays sorted in weather tight tool boxes. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  14. Be very careful about wearing down. Cutoff wheels won't survive this and fly apart eventually if you get small enough. That's ok until a piece wedges itself an inch into your thigh. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
  15. Agreed but when they began to know me on a first name basis replacing screwdrivers because the tips broke off constantly I had enough. No more replacements no matter if it's free or not. Sent from my SM-T350 using Tapatalk
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