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#117130 - 05/24/04 11:52 AM This Used To Be A Conductor
Webmaster Offline


Registered: 10/07/00
Posts: 3142
Loc: NY, USA
This Used To Be A Conductor
Photos by Dave55:

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#117131 - 05/24/04 12:03 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
resqcapt19 Offline

Registered: 11/10/00
Posts: 2209
Loc: IL
Is that an aluminum conductor that was installed underground? That's what normally happens to aluminum if there is a small nick in the insulation and the conductor is installed underground.

#117132 - 05/24/04 12:30 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
Dave55 Offline

Registered: 05/08/04
Posts: 666
Loc: Crystal Lake, Illinois, USA
Exactly, Don.


#117133 - 05/24/04 04:44 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
Lostazhell Offline

Registered: 02/21/04
Posts: 1248
Loc: Bakersfield, CA (Originally Or...
Ahhh, this looks very familiar! I once had a call at a mobile home park where about 8 units had no power... A month earlier a plumbing company installed a sewer cleanout near one of the affected units.. All the utilities in this place were in the same trench.. Tone traced it & lost signal right next to the cleanout.. Lo & behold I found direct burial #1 Aluminum conductors just like this there... I wonder if the plumber noticed a tingling feeling when he was doing his work? The circuit breaker controlling this did not trip (Zinsco 90A 240V)..


#117134 - 05/24/04 05:10 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
electure Offline


Registered: 12/24/00
Posts: 4226
Loc: Fullerton, CA USA
What causes the white "globs" on conductors that get wet?
I've seen this many times, but never knew why the formed....S

#117135 - 05/24/04 08:47 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
SvenNYC Offline

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
I think the white crud is aluminium oxide....

Aluminium reacting with the oxygen in the water and probably who knows what else in the soil?

Just a guess....I'm no chemist.

#117136 - 05/25/04 09:12 AM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
Mean Gene Offline

Registered: 10/20/03
Posts: 137
Loc: Ohio, USA
I think the electricity in the conductor has a lot to do with it also.

Where's Scott35 ?? Surely he could give us an indepth explanation of this occurance.

#117137 - 05/25/04 09:04 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
crash Offline

Registered: 10/21/03
Posts: 130
Loc: Calgary Canada
SvenNYC: I'm no chemist either, so I phoned one up. The white crud is aluminum oxide.

[This message has been edited by crash (edited 05-26-2004).]

#117138 - 05/26/04 04:00 AM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
Trumpy Offline


Registered: 07/05/02
Posts: 8532
Loc: SI,New Zealand
To agree with Crash,
That is Aluminium Oxide, caused by fresh Aluminium being exposed to Oxygen.
Water only accelerates the deterioration of the Aluminium metal below, the oxide surface.
Let's face it, these days if you're not young, you're old - Red Green grin

#117139 - 05/26/04 07:45 PM Re: This Used To Be A Conductor
Bjarney Offline

Registered: 04/10/02
Posts: 2561
Loc: West-Southern Inner-Northeast ...
For aluminium conductor, air and moisture readily form oxides and hydroxides when in contact with the metal on its exposed surfaces—coincidentally happening to be superb {and merciless} insulators.

As is probably evident from the images, in time the oxides also migrate into cable-strand interstices.

Nonreversible tool-compressed terminations and splices are unbeatably durable for many decades of electrical-connection reliability [and survival of the electrical system.]


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