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Re: Electrician or Not? #74617 01/29/07 10:18 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,623
gfretwell Offline
Florida only licenses the contractors (the owner), the wireman is not licensed although some jurisdictions have a journeyman card. Rules vary widely about what that means.

Greg Fretwell
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Re: Electrician or Not? #74618 01/31/07 06:54 PM
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 179
derater Offline
FWIW, I've wired homes for a steel plant electrician and an AF aircraft electrician who once traveled with the Thunderbirds. Neither had a clue about resi wiring.

Re: Electrician or Not? #74619 01/31/07 11:00 PM
Joined: Jun 2006
Posts: 7
ElJay Offline
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South Carolina 2 Types


Re: Electrician or Not? #74620 01/31/07 11:00 PM
Joined: Jan 2006
Posts: 47
NJ_WVUGrad Offline
In my opinion I can't see how one cannot see the different skills involved with commercial and residential.

This may sound overly simplified but, there is more to being an Journeyman Wireman (Commercial work)than electrical and vice versa. A large amount of which is not able to be tested.

Much of commercial work is being a good "mechanic".

So in no particular order, a few examples lol

Larger Service sizes and the implications, bigger wire& cable, bigger material,bigger and more varied tools, switchgear

More panels, differing voltages, transformers, larger variety of lighting and associated hardware

More Building in general, i.e. pipe racks, equipment racks, on and on.

if anyone can add please do

BTW, please, please do not take this as a flame generator...I am not in any way shape or form saying Resi vs commercial is better one way or the other.

Every guy who does a lot of big work knows alot of guys who couldn't wire a 3-way or do a service call, troubleshoot a circuit, etc etc

Re: Electrician or Not? #74621 01/31/07 11:43 PM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 821
ShockMe77 Offline
Every guy who does a lot of big work knows alot of guys who couldn't wire a 3-way or do a service call, troubleshoot a circuit, etc etc

Ain't that the truth.

I once worked with a guy who was layed from the union and had no idea how to wire a 3-way switch, muchless perform a 200AMP service upgrade. But that's okay, I haven't done many 500kcmil pulls. Your point is well taken.

I believe there's a real big difference between commercial and residential. In commercial installations, I believe you really need to know a lot to be able say yeah I know how to do that. Most of the work is drawn-up on a blue print so as long as you're somewhat knowledgable in doing that, how can you go wrong? I say that loosely because obviously things can go wrong.

In residential, after a year or two of wiring new homes there really isn't too much more you're going to learn that you haven't learned already. After learning some basic code requirements for receptacle placement, bathrooms, kitchens, basements, HVAC equipment, and services, the work is all repetitive. After that it's all about how fast you can get the work done.

Now, doing old work and service calls in 100-year old homes is another story. The learning there never ends.

Re: Electrician or Not? #74622 02/02/07 02:54 AM
Joined: Jul 2002
Posts: 8,397
Trumpy Offline
From an "out of town" perspective, we work on one Registration, Electrician.
You have to pass the same exam as everyone else and that puts you in the same boat as your peers.
No-one has anything over anyone apart from years of experience.
Over here you can work on any system or voltage as long as it is not carried on poles or carries HV or above that.
Disregard that above statement, as far as security wiring goes, that is a whole different kettle of fish, most security installers here don't hold Electrical Registration as Electricians, a lot of Electricians here wouldn't know where to start with a Security or Fire Alarm system.
And yes, we have the multi-guess exams here these days too.

Re: Electrician or Not? #74623 02/02/07 11:54 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
You know, even though there are countless specialties in medicine, all MD's have the same exact state license. Even though a brain surgeon can legally operate on your knee, I doubt you would ask him to!

Electric work is something like that. Apart from the related "side" trades (alarms, CATV, phone, data, etc.), within the trade is everything from pulling rope to PLC's.

While I like to think that I have a broader range than most, I recognize that every task calls for different attitudes. So, when I am done hanging pipe, I will take a short break to "adjust my attitude" before I start pulling wire, etc.

I expect the distinctions between residential and general electricians to blur with time. Homes are getting to be far more complex; I've seen PLC's and VFD's in some. The guy who can only "rope" a house is a dying breed.

Re: Electrician or Not? #74624 02/02/07 02:45 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,261
HotLine1 Offline
Reno, your response is well thought out, as is ShockMe (Ron)

NJ has a Lic Electrical Contractor and a Business Permit is REQUIRED to operate.

That said, there are also various 'low voltage' "titles" alarm (fire/burg), telephone "exempt card", etc. The Lic EC can 'do-it-all'. Some do, some don't. Our Board of Examiners also issues a 'Journeyman Card', although I have never seen one. It is not valid to perform work for hire (contracting)

As to the commentary; yse, I know resi guys that can get lost in a retail store job, and I know comm/ind guys that can't do 'house work', unless it's pipe. As Ron said, trouble and rework in old houses (fish, etc) is another animal, that craft comes from patience and EXPERIENCE.


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