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Thread: Two strikes and I'm out

  1. #11

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    I remember messing with a broken lightbulb when I was a kid. Naturally it was in a socket, plugged in with the power on. I stuck in a pen, there was a flash of blinding light and I sort of came to with a weird sensation in my fingertips and forearm.

    Fortunately, by dumb coincidence, I had only put one hand in the bulb with the pen, so there was no circuit except through my fingers.
    I use my C128 because I am an ornery, stubborn, retro grouch. -- Bob Masse
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  2. #12
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    You were lucky. Old story: Back in '63 I was at sea onboard the USS Kearsarge (CVS-33) working on an airborne radar system for one of the A-4D close support aircraft on that old anti-submarine carrier. The avionic shop was on the O2 level just under the flight deck about midships. GQ sounded and the A/C in the shop stopped and everyone present was becoming hot sweaty. My left hand came real close to the AN/ASQ-17 IFF power supply, and 1050 volts of RF reached out and nailed me between my thumb and index finger in the web like area. It knocked half way across the shop and put a hole clean through that fleshy area. After GQ, I went down to sick bay and had to get some shots and dressing for the wound. No purple heart, just a butt chewing from the shop chief for working during GQ. My hand was numb like for about a week or so. The moral here is don't _ _ _ k with RF.

  3. #13
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    It doesn't even have to be high voltage--I received a nasty burn when my metal wristwatch got caught between a car's 12v and the chassis.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    It doesn't even have to be high voltage--I received a nasty burn when my metal wristwatch got caught between a car's 12v and the chassis.
    You can melt a wrench just by dropping it between + and - of a car battery.
    What I collect: 68K/Early PPC Mac, DOS/Win 3.1 era machines, Amiga/ST, C64/128
    Nubus/ISA/VLB/MCA/EISA cards of all types
    Boxed apps and games for the above systems
    Analog video capture cards/software and complete systems

  5. #15
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    You can even melt the lead battery terminals if you have a strong enough battery. I had a starter solenoid fail, shorted to the firewall. Before I could get the hood open to disconnect the battery to prevent a fire, the positive battery terminal and half the battery post had turned into a puddle of molten lead, fused into the plastic atop the battery. I was able to start the motor with a jumper pack and abuse the alternator to drive home to replace the terminal. I used that battery for over ten years after that; finally retired it two years ago.

    RF, and high voltage other than constant DC can do all kinds of crazy things. I've been shocked more than once discharging a CRT the way most people recommend with a screwdriver and jumper wire. I've since switched to using a high voltage probe voltmeter to slowly discharge the tube.

    The two worst shocks I had were from things that fell apart unexpectedly. First was a TV from Japan that I thought I could slide the back cover off of to work on it. The whole case came apart in four pieces and I was left holding a circuit board in my left hand and the 2nd anode conductor in my right. I saw stars and then some. I had a sharp funny bone pain for days. Since then I never try to disassemble a live TV, something which I always did prior. The other was a 480V 3 90A disconnect for an air compressor. I was replacing a fuse (bare handed back in the goode olde dayes) when the disconnect fell apart and the fuse I was yanking on with all my might became energised. My other hand was pushing hard on the disconnect housing. This is the kind of thing why now we all wear gloves, use fuse pullers, and shut off a disconnect upstream. I remember having a very hard time breathing, and running in circles to numb the pain, with a heavy metal song blaring in my head (I don't normally listen to that kind of music).

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