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#117438 06/12/04 07:43 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
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iwire Offline OP
Moderator
[Linked Image]



[Linked Image]



[Linked Image]

[This message has been edited by iwire (edited 06-12-2004).]


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
E
e57 Offline
Member
Please tell me that is not for a neon sign, with remote Ballast/Tranformers? Is that insulation melted there at the cieling? Or, just bare for some other silly reason? And, would it not be fun if those MC straps were screwed to tin can framing?

Why would he need to be concerned? He has Fire Insurance, and Liability right?

[This message has been edited by e57 (edited 06-12-2004).]


Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
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iwire Offline OP
Moderator
Right on all counts. [Linked Image]

I did not get closer to it than what the picture shows.

The valence was covered with cloth that had some metallic threads in it.

I was eating my lunch with my back to this when my buddy pointed it out, I had to go out to my truck and get my camera.

I brought this to the attention of the manager on duty and it seemed I was holding him up from going out to smoke a joint.

This is not a Mom & Pop restaurant but a good size chain in this area.

For those of you from this area this is beside the Tennis Hall of Fame Newport RI.

Hopefully this has been fixed the pictures are 2 years old.

Bob


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 289
:
Member
great pictures.
Neon signage always brings the best electrical dangers.

most neon sparkies dont know how to deal with GTO wiring, and that they mustn't just mount and bundle it like normal wires.

so is the black tree-looking stuff burnt ?
did you hear buzzing from up there?

Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 183
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Member
If you look at the first picture, it is burning out at every point the valence contacts the grounded ceiling grid...

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,391
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iwire Offline OP
Moderator
Quote
so is the black tree-looking stuff burnt ?

Yes that is what it is.

I could not hear it or see arcs but in person there was no question what was happening.


Bob Badger
Construction & Maintenance Electrician
Massachusetts
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
E
e57 Offline
Member
I don't work with neon, (Signs are a different license here)and have no idea of the output voltage to power one, and imagine it is considerable.

I was at a Kareoke Bar with some under a railing on a deck. It was covered, except for one area that was damaged, something hit it and broke a piece off the plexiglass cover. I noticed this because I set my drink down next to it. Then notice one section of the lighting was off, and that it had a conductor sticking out on the other side of my cocktail. I grabbed the Manager of the place, and told him that it definantly was not safe. ( this guy looked like he just came back from smoking the joint. ) He agreed, and shut off all of the neon. And, said he would get someone out the next day, he actually called me to tell me I may have saved his ass, offered up a some free drinks the next time I was in. I like it when people appreciate casual observances, most don't! I have also disconnected some neon at another place where it did start a small fire, going through some wood framing, and got simular treatment, and they paid the bill for me to come out. Although, I could only say "Call a Sign guy, not in our license..."

Anyway... That "black tree" looking stuff, I thought that was some weird pattern in the cloth at first look. Is that insulation bleeding into the fabric?! Or is it burning in it's paths to ground? I have never seen anything like that! Now, what type of voltage does neon use? And, I have seen it mounted on insulated posts before. Should the wire be sheilded or guarded in some way?Would that type of mounting be more suited to this type of installation? How would something like this be done correctly?



[This message has been edited by e57 (edited 06-13-2004).]


Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 66
C
Member
im thinking the "black tree stuff" may be whatever the transformer is filled with leaking out and running down the wires. then it soaks into the wallpaper.

Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 806
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Member
Looks like the black stuff is carbonized wallpaper to me.

Notice how the "tree" seems to originate at the strap holding the wire. The wire insulation appears to be damaged by the (improper) strap, which is now charged with high voltage. The voltage is leaking to ground (the T-bar ceiling grid) via any conductive path it can find, in this case conductive threads and surface dirt on the wallpaper.

When the "tree" grows enough to bridge between the 2 wires or to ground, a fire will probably result....

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 289
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Member
Regarding the neon Transformers, usual data is 1,000 to 15,000 Volts at 10 to 100mA. The thinner and longer the tube, the more voltage. The thicker, the more current.

GTO Neon wire has to be installed with care, not along grounded metal parts ect. as said some sparkies dont know and just nail and bundle it down like a romex...

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