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Author Topic: Antique Functional Electrical Vault  (Read 5910 times)

Tom Bourke

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Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« on: August 29, 2014, 09:21:26 pm »

I found this on a metal working forum I frequent. http://www.machinerymoverschicago.com/blog/Antique-Functional-Electrical-Vault/

From the thread I read on it the system voltage is 240V.  The exposed buss bars are not normally accessible to the operator.  The operator is exposed to the hot knife switches.  The big switches have secondary carbon pads that are first make/last break to limit the damage from arcing.
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Scott Holtzman

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2014, 06:15:30 am »

I found this on a metal working forum I frequent. http://www.machinerymoverschicago.com/blog/Antique-Functional-Electrical-Vault/

From the thread I read on it the system voltage is 240V.  The exposed buss bars are not normally accessible to the operator.  The operator is exposed to the hot knife switches.  The big switches have secondary carbon pads that are first make/last break to limit the damage from arcing.

What a work of art, I get the same feeling when in ancient phone vaults.   I also enjoy old broadcast transmitters.  Knowing the potential on the plates always kept you on your toes as you tuned the grid/output.  Those huge glass tubes were lovely also.


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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2014, 02:39:59 pm »

The obligatory disclaimer:

It should be noted that these examples of old electrical installations violate many portions of current electrical, building, and occupational safety codes, but they are typically "grandfathered" in because they met the codes when they were installed.

Even though the installations are very neatly done by tradesmen who were obviously proud of their craft, they should not be considered an example of safe construction practices.
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2014, 04:01:01 pm »

I agree Jonathan.  However, I always admire the workmanship involved in many of these old installs.   As well I find it enlightening/intriguing that a previous generation managed to use gear that we find extremely hazardous-yet they were smart enough to do so reasonably safely.  If only we would learn to combine present day knowledge and safety by design with yesteryears awareness of the potential hazards!
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2014, 08:14:16 pm »

I always admire the workmanship involved in many of these old installs.

I do, too. It seems that quality workmanship these days is hit-or-miss. An industrial facility that I occasionally do computer work for has two nearly identical, large, machine control panels, but they were built by different panel shops. One is done very neatly, and if you saw it by itself you would probably be impressed. But the other is absolutely a work of art that makes the first look haphazard.

The shop that built the second one? They also do residential, commercial, and industrial wiring. They have divisions that install low voltage (data networks, security systems, etc.), traffic signals and street lighting, and utility distribution. Every one of those divisions exhibits stellar workmanship. They train their electricians well and hold them to high standards.
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2014, 08:21:50 pm »

This is true craftsmanship in the modern age, found on the 'net. Electrical contractor not identified.



Source: http://www.electriciansonlinetraining.net/__conduit_bending_emt.html

If you do it right the first time, you won't have to do it right a second time.
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Cailen Waddell

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2014, 08:50:24 pm »


This is true craftsmanship in the modern age, found on the 'net. Electrical contractor not identified.



Source: http://www.electriciansonlinetraining.net/__conduit_bending_emt.html

If you do it right the first time, you won't have to do it right a second time.

At a theater I used to work at, we had a dimmer renovation, and the electricians were a couple good ole boys from the sticks.  Every single one of their conduit runs and bends looked like this.  Every single one.   When the factory tech from ETC came to do the turn on he said it was the cleanest work he had ever seen.   He took pictures, I'll try to did someone.  Tradesman that take that much pride in their work are getting harder to find, and all seem to be, politely, near retirement age.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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frank kayser

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2014, 12:54:32 pm »

I found this on a metal working forum I frequent. http://www.machinerymoverschicago.com/blog/Antique-Functional-Electrical-Vault/

From the thread I read on it the system voltage is 240V.  The exposed buss bars are not normally accessible to the operator.  The operator is exposed to the hot knife switches.  The big switches have secondary carbon pads that are first make/last break to limit the damage from arcing.
Interesting that the meter POCP meter sockets and some of the conduit seem to be very recent.  Interesting, too, are some of the rules governing grandfathering - some jurisdictions require "everything" be brought up to code when making "upgrades", while others seem to be more of a "permanent" grandfathering.  No doubt, a balancing act between safety and cost to the business. 


frank
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2014, 04:53:43 pm »

Tradesman that take that much pride in their work are getting harder to find, and all seem to be, politely, near retirement age.


So too are the customers that are willing to pay for quality work. Just as in the audio world, the bottom line for may customers is the dollar.  Quality workmanship often takes more time, and quality workers cost more to keep on the payroll. The reality is that I prefer to do top of the line work, but I have to stay busy which means I have to be competitive even with guys that take shortcuts.  Just like you can't take your best rig to every gig.
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Steve Swaffer

Tom Bourke

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2014, 08:06:14 pm »

Interesting that the meter POCP meter sockets and some of the conduit seem to be very recent.  Interesting, too, are some of the rules governing grandfathering - some jurisdictions require "everything" be brought up to code when making "upgrades", while others seem to be more of a "permanent" grandfathering.  No doubt, a balancing act between safety and cost to the business. 


frank
Also interesting is the guy who posted those pics was working on the "hazardous side" with out full PPE.  The chunk he was touching was dead but the stuff around him was not.  He had commented about sweaty hands!  :o 
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I have a mild form of Dyslexia that affects my ability to spell.  I do use spell checking to help but it does not always work.  My form of Dyslexia does not affect my reading.  Dyslexics of the world untie! <a href="http://www.cwalv.com" target="_blank">http://www.cwalv.com</a>

Michael Ardai, N1IST

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2014, 09:41:37 pm »

There are some artists with NM as well...

/mike
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2014, 12:27:35 am »

Just as in the audio world, the bottom line for may customers is the dollar.  Quality workmanship often takes more time, and quality workers cost more to keep on the payroll. The reality is that I prefer to do top of the line work, but I have to stay busy which means I have to be competitive even with guys that take shortcuts.

The thing about quality workmanship is it can reduce the TCO:
  • Fewer callbacks during or after construction
  • Fewer problems requiring diagnosis and repair
  • Easier diagnosis and repair where there is a problem
  • Easier installation of upgrades and changes
To top it off, some of the most skilled workers get the job done more quickly BECAUSE the quality of their workmanship is so high. Unlike hack-jobs, they don't make a mess in the process that has to be cleaned up. They work well with other trades, not getting in each others' ways. There is much less waste -- both in materials and time. Materials are used in the most efficient manner possible.
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Mike Sokol

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2014, 09:46:34 am »

There are some artists with NM as well...

/mike

Am I the only one that finds this picture kinda sexy? Is this the "cable porn" I'm always hearing about?  ;D
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Jeff Bankston

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2014, 02:33:10 am »

This is true craftsmanship in the modern age, found on the 'net. Electrical contractor not identified.



Source: http://www.electriciansonlinetraining.net/__conduit_bending_emt.html

If you do it right the first time, you won't have to do it right a second time.
this is not my work but its the kind i do. i wanted to take fotos of the condiut work i did and expected others on my crew to do but most businesses did not allow cameras and if caught taking with a phone got us kicked off the job. thats that way conduit should look.
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Jeff Bankston

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2014, 02:41:33 am »

So too are the customers that are willing to pay for quality work. Just as in the audio world, the bottom line for may customers is the dollar.  Quality workmanship often takes more time, and quality workers cost more to keep on the payroll.
quality takes more time ? not true. i am a commercial electrician. first of all theirs no such thing in electrical as top quiality vs crappy. the job is gotten by the bidding process. the customer expects the job to be done right. doing quality work like in foto doesnt take any more time. it actually takes less time since you have your other measurements after the 1st bend. neat conduit work goes faster. i dont expect non commercial electricians to understand this. all my jobs came in on time and unless the bossman underbid they were on or under budget. crappy conduit work show people dont give a dam and are only on the job to collect a paycheck. i put my name on every job i did.
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frank kayser

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2014, 03:54:43 pm »

Am I the only one that finds this picture kinda sexy? Is this the "cable porn" I'm always hearing about?  ;D
I don't know about "SEXY", but a real head-turner nonetheless.
frank
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Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2014, 08:38:09 pm »

Here is a switchboard I saw yesterday.  It is in the Liberty ship on display in San Francisco.  It is energized (120 volts DC)-and the screen on the right was just recently to protect the public-never mind that I could have reached live parts fairly easily had I desired to do so.  Of particular interest is the brass "guardrail" across the front-such a convenient place to rest your hand to steady yourself as the ship rolls-while you operate the switchboard?  Keep in mind this is in the upper part of the steam engine room-so penty of heat and moisture so likely your hands would not be dry!

Another interesting note-the ship runs in 120 VDC-but they can install CFLs and they run just fine on the DC.  Makes sense-just never occurred to me that you could do that..
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Steve Swaffer

Ray Aberle

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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2014, 09:16:10 pm »

It is in the Liberty ship on display in San Francisco. 

I don't think San Francisco is real.
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Re: Antique Functional Electrical Vault
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2014, 09:16:10 pm »


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