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#215871 08/05/15 11:02 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,460
Likes: 3
Cat Servant
Member
I've spent the past year getting back 'into' the trade, after half a decade of industrial work. It's been a rocky road. Now, my latest project is winding down:

http://www.pkmarch.com/marion-performing-arts-center.html

I've been on this project since March. It will still 'linger' for perhaps another month, as finishing touches are made. For myself, and five other electricians, this job pretty much ends this week.

So ... what have I learned?

Well, the job reinforced the need for setting aside a staging area and keeping your parts organized.

I think I need to set up "work carts" that focus on a single task. For example, keep everything related to running pipe together, have another for wire pulls, etc. It seems everyone spent half the day running around, looking for that additional box cover, etc.

Communication on-site has been a huge issue. Again, lots of time was lost looking for someone ... Cell phones were of some use, but background noise was a huge issue. Also, we often had to communicate while both hands were occupied (as on wire pulls). I'm thinking some manner of headphone arrangement... (ideas and suggestions most welcome!)

Materials storage was also a disaster. Lighting fixtures arrived months before we could use them. We must have move each fixture around a score of times before we hung it.

The utility of the small 1-man, self-propelled "column" lifts was again demonstrated. Much easier to move through doorways and into small rooms; once the ceiling was filled with gridwork, ductwork, and piping, even using a small scissor lift was often awkward. (Google SkyJack SJ-16).

Next project? Why, I get to help build one of those huge 'box' stores that folk cry are killing off small businesses. Though, this particular one isn't very large. Right now it's not much more than a hole in the ground.

Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 206
G
Member
Looks a nice job to be involved in. Is the lighting mostly LED?

Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,389
Likes: 7
Member
Reno:
Comm can be a tough issue on some sites; we used Motorola radios, with the remote mic/speaker ear clip. Problem was the remote was not intended for construction conditions, and did not have long lives. A lot of guys use a cell with a Bluetooth earset.

Staging areas are tough unless you have a large jobsite. I used storage trailers a lot. The 'sea box' sitting on grade. A lot of guys use them. They are lockable and secure, and the $$ are not bad.

I had 'work carts' that my guys would 'load up' with what they needed each day, sometimes twice daily, and it worked pretty well. Pipe was stored on 1 or 2 pipe carts.

I rented a similar lift to the Skyjack (Genie) for tight jobsites, and was satisfied with the results.



John
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,460
Likes: 3
Cat Servant
Member
Further reflections:

1) Next time, I really need to provide better temporary electric ... not only more circuits, but more diversified in location. The job was too often a snarl of endless cords - not easy on cart wheels!

2) I also need to allow for better temporary site lighting. Due to scaffolding, etc., much of the site was as dark as a cave.

3) There's a very real need for a "small" wire pulling machine. I'm thinking along the lines of the pullers offered by Maxis. The Greenlee monster was quite good for our big feeders, but really isn't suited to branch circuit uses.

Geoff, the building does use a large amount of LED lighting. This is my first serious exposure to it, so I cannot speak to its' utility.

One frustration is that much of the 'neat' work will be done after I'm off the site. I'll miss out on theater lighting folks, controls folks, etc.- though I've had to run all their pipe and most of their wire frown

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 984
Likes: 1
G
Member
We've got a few LED worklights here (the kind that come with their own tripod stand). They're bright, lightweight to carry and don't give you a burn if (I mean when) you accidentally bump into them. That lack of heat also means that you don't heat the area up when you're working in a small room or space. IMHO they're worth looking into...even though they cost more than the quartz lights that they are replacing.


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