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#72507 - 12/01/06 05:34 PM Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Haligan  Offline
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 111
Berkeley, CA USA
Every Christmas I go visit Mom back East. The air is bone dry and the static electricity is un-freakin-believable. Every time I step out of the car I fry myself when I close the door. The spark is HUGE. In broad daylight, it's about the size of a dime. I scream and say bad words that one should not say in front of their mother.

Grabbing the door frame and then stepping down helps only sometimes. Other times, the charge is so big I get fried anyway.

All of the anti-static items I've seen are stationary mats and wrist straps and things. I'm going to make my own personal portable ant-static doohicky so I won't get zapped and consequently my mother will continue to believe I'm the fine upstanding young man she raised.

Your suggestions are welcome and encouraged.

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#72508 - 12/01/06 05:41 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
yanici  Offline
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 58
Yeah, around here the static is annoying. I always hold onto my key and ground it on the metal of the door when I get out, that way the key gets the blast.

#72509 - 12/01/06 06:11 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Haligan  Offline
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 111
Berkeley, CA USA
It must have plastic between you and the key because I tried that once with a bare key and the increased conductivity made it 3x as bad.

#72510 - 12/01/06 10:45 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Matt Barrett  Offline
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 28
Danbury, CT
I built them years ago, I called it a Personal Discharge Device…

Just take a 1 Meg ohm, 1-watt resistor (just so it’s big enough) and bend a full loop on one lead and solder it closed. Then fold the other lead back on itself, solder it, and put it on your keyring.

Now just touch the resistor to anything before you do.

#72511 - 12/02/06 11:52 AM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Haligan  Offline
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 111
Berkeley, CA USA

Thanks! I'm going to make some BPDDs for the whole family and give them as stocking stuffers.

Barrett Personal Discharge Device

I am famous for my own kind of discharge device. It has a bad reputation tho....

#72512 - 12/02/06 12:52 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
gfretwell  Offline

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,142
I think I would be cautious about doing this with a car key. If this is a new car with a chip in the key you might be there for a while.

Greg Fretwell

#72513 - 12/02/06 04:50 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Jps1006  Offline
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 615
Northern IL
Can I ask what material your pants are made out of and what your car seat is made from?

Is this cotton to leather or polyester to vinyl?

#72514 - 12/02/06 04:57 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Ron  Offline
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 582
White Plains, NY
Can you share some of the theory behind the Barrett Personal Discharge Device?

Where do those pesky electrons go? The completed circuit is still through you, isn't it?


#72515 - 12/02/06 05:48 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Alan Belson  Offline
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,803
Mayenne N. France
They used to sell a little strip of conducting rubber that trailed from the car's rear bumper to just touch the road. This was supposed to discharge static from the vehicle. Did it work? I dunno, I was only ten at the time, but they looked like a good flashy product for taking money off mugs!

Man-made fibre is the problem. Try cotton, wool or /mix socks, shorts and pants. You can actually buy conducting shoes, [not recommended for electricians though!], or try leather soles. Natural products like wool, cotton, linen etc., conduct well because they contain water mechanically locked into the fibers. They feel nicer to wear too, IMO, although leather soles wear out fast. My dad used to hammer iron studs into the soles and heels of his work boots to prolong their life, anyone remember them?

The idea is for both the vehicle and you to be at the same potential as the street.


Wood work but can't!

#72516 - 12/02/06 06:59 PM Re: Portable Personal Anti-Static Device  
Jps1006  Offline
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 615
Northern IL
I got my worst shocks like this wearing a suit while driving my '97 E350 with vinyl seats and the pants were some synthetic fiber. after pulling the plastic handle, pushing the plastic interior door panel and sliding across the seat out the door, intial contact with the metal body discharged a screamer.

But day-to-day routine in cotton jeans, no shocks.

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