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#32657 - 12/30/03 09:46 PM Trouble Call From Hell
Attic Rat Offline
Member

Registered: 12/14/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
..Hi Gang!!
..Just getting over my Christmas hiatus, and was on my way home this afternoon when I "got the call"...Power outage in a commercial building...OK, so I responded,only to find 1/2 a dozen utility trucks,a CRANE,..and Fire personnel,milling about in the parking lot...I pulled in and was swamped by the staff of a courier service with requests that I turn around,and go home....they didn't want to go back to work and told me to "take all the time I needed"...I laughed at this,and proceeded to see what was awry...The 3-phase 265/460v. 50kw "pot" had burned to a crisp...I was stunned!!! Then with the help of the utility guys,opened up the 400a. CT cabinet only to find one 750mcm.Aluminum THW cable "welded" to the 4"connector,melted right thru the fiber bushing and all...My 1st assumption was that the 750mcm.cable had "chafed" against the connector, arced and created a ground fault and burned up another phase along with it.This assumption was substantiated by the utility inspector and the crew chief.So here I am,now having to re-pull 2 sets of 4-500mcm.copper conductors,and had to call my buddy,who is also an E.C. for help..I don't have the man-power nor the winch with which to pull these lines..All this and I have to coerce these guys to work on New Years Eve...I gladly told my buddy I'll go in half with him on the proceeds....Oh well, it could be worse,I could be starving!!I guess Thank God for "small" favors!!!HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!!PLEASE DRIVE SAFELY!!!!
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.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

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#32658 - 12/31/03 02:46 PM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
Electric Eagle Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/02
Posts: 928
Loc: Alpharetta, GA
Sounds like a very expensive service call, I hope you made it worth your while.

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#32659 - 01/01/04 05:04 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
iwire Offline
Moderator

Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4343
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
AR,
How are you going to put 2 sets of 4-500mcm.copper conductors in a raceway without pulling equipmnet?

How far are you going?

Bob
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

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#32660 - 01/01/04 06:42 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
Attic Rat Offline
Member

Registered: 12/14/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
 Quote:
How are you going to put 2 sets of 4-500mcm.copper conductors in a raceway without pulling equipmnet?

..That's where my buddy comes in,...he has an elaborate supply of winches,pulleys,etc...it still is going to be a hard job pulling,...it's 85' from point to point....
AR
_________________________
.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

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#32661 - 01/01/04 06:47 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
Attic Rat Offline
Member

Registered: 12/14/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
 Quote:
Sounds like a very expensive service call, I hope you made it worth your while.
..Oh yeah,it ain't gonna be cheap...thats for certain!!
AR
_________________________
.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

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#32662 - 01/01/04 07:14 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
iwire Offline
Moderator

Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4343
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
AR with your name I was not sure if you had dealt with 500 kcmil much.

It is a about 1.15 pound per foot so just the weight of your pull will be 391 pounds. I assume you have two raceways.

Getting it around corners will make that 391 pounds feel like a truck is parked on it.
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

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#32663 - 01/01/04 07:33 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
Attic Rat Offline
Member

Registered: 12/14/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
Day 1..
..After a harrowing morning on the phone with my supply houses,I finally found one who would deliver the 960'of #500mcm THHN to the jobsite...Everybody was closing early yesterday,and I had to act fast...$2.84/ft. for copper!!! My prtner in this job grossly underestimated the cost per foot..He figured about $1.50/ft..oh well,we're already losing money...I then had to "fly" to the PSE&G distributing yard and pick up the 3 new 400a.CT's,as the old ones were toasted...At about 12:00pm, we finally ripped out one set of the old char-broiled #750mcm,aluminum wire from one of the 4"pipes..We were able to pull in the new set of 4-500mcm.copper to the CT cabinet.Now comes the NIGHTMARE,..when we pulled the other set out,the lines had evidently burned thru,and only 25' or so came out..the remaining 60"+ was still welded together inside the underground pipe..After spending a small fortune at Grainger,my buddy's electric winch failed, and so did his block and tackle..we bought some new hardware...but in spite of ALL efforts to extricate the remaining wire,we failed..miserably!! That wire was not coming out,it must have welded itself to the inside of the pipe,and we couldn't break it..I told him that probably even if we succeeded in getting the lines out,the pipe inside must have slag deposits in it,if...it isn't broken thru,and open underground..We are gonna have to go back there on Friday,and get a backhoe,and dig out the bad pipe..replace it,and then pull the new lines...Thats about it,for now,I'll keep you guys posted ....
AR
_________________________
.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

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#32664 - 01/01/04 07:37 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
iwire Offline
Moderator

Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4343
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
Sorry to hear that AR.

Copper prices have been rising significantly lately.
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

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#32665 - 01/01/04 07:49 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
Attic Rat Offline
Member

Registered: 12/14/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
..Now it comes down to re-negotiating with the owner..the estimated price I gave her doesn't apply anymore..we weren't counting on excavating....At this point tho' she really has no choice in the matter,..she has 3 tenants,and they're losing business by the day...We told her that if all went well,we could've had her up and running by Friday..now it's a different story...
AR
_________________________
.."if it ain't fixed,don't break it...call a Licensed Electrician"

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#32666 - 01/01/04 08:22 AM Re: Trouble Call From Hell
iwire Offline
Moderator

Registered: 01/05/03
Posts: 4343
Loc: North Attleboro, MA USA
I will tell you we do work like this all the time.

Always T&M we do not need the practice and it is hard to predict (as you found out) where the job will lead.

Good Luck, explain to the customer that their insurance company should be involved.

Be careful in saying you will be complete by a certain time or you could be paying for lost business beyond that time.



[This message has been edited by iwire (edited 01-01-2004).]
_________________________
Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts

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