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I Forge Iron


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About Bantou

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    Senior Member

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Central Texas
  • Interests
    Smithing, hunting, reloading, bullet casting, lead refining, wood working, books, D&D... it’s a long list lol

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  1. I haven’t read the NEC book. My job stops at the weather head/meter base. As a rural co-op, we have our own spec book from US DA. I’m sure it meets NEC requirements for power lines, but I’ve never looked at them.
  2. That’s why poles don’t typically catch fire in a heavy rain storm. Rain water doesn’t conduct electricity very well since it is mostly pure. Where we run into problems is when the insulators get dirty. Around here, most of our pole fires happen during the plowing and cotton harvest seasons. In a dry year, the plows can kick up enough dust to coat the insulators. When the cotton gins are running, they produce all kinds of dust as well. If we have a sudden downpour, the rain water can pick up enough minerals and dirt to allow the electricity to track to the pole. If we get a gentle rain, it will
  3. Sending someone after the sky hook or wire stretcher is another of our favorites.
  4. I’m guessing that the soil in those places is heavy sand. Sand and electricity do weird things. My brother found a 7.2kv line hot on the ground in sand. He said when they found it, kids were jumping over it like it was a log.
  5. Paid $12.50 + an hour and a half of drive time for this box of files and chisels. Not a bad deal at all for what I got. It’s probably $100+ worth of files and chisels if I were to buy them new.
  6. No I turn them after tapering. The process I tried first was: Split, fold one back, taper, curl, straighten out folded side, taper, curl. Now I’m trying: taper, split, curl. After re-measuring the mark on my anvil, the tapers are actually 3” long instead of 2.5”. I like that length, I just need to get the thickness right now. I might try one at 2.5 just to see if I like that measurement better with the thicker finials.
  7. I said that mostly as a joke. I can’t tell you how much ground rod you need for a dead short in the panel (my knowledge stops just past the weather head). I know that we require them to provide a path to ground in case the house loses other paths. I’ve seen faucets in a barn pick up voltage because it lost its ground. Electricity will ALWAYS seek a path to ground and plumbing is usually a convenient one. Spec is a 5/8th rod driven 8 ft deep.
  8. I knew the ones on the bottom were going to be too thin as soon as I cut them. It wasn’t so much a matter of overworking them on the horn as it was not having enough material to start with. I did the curls in two heats each with only minor adjustments made on the second heat. I’ll give just tapering to length a try. A smarter man would probably call this a wash and start making smaller things with easy to follow plans until his skills improved more. Unfortunately, I’m bullheaded and don’t like a project “beating me.” So, I’ll probably keep beating my head against this thing until I get i
  9. Didn’t you give me tips about using a hacksaw earlier? If it’s that hard to drive, they aren’t going to pull it up to check it.
  10. Made another attempt at the split. It came out better than the last one but I still need practice. I tried cutting from both sides this time and wound up with a bigger mess on the cut than before. My opposing cut marks were off just enough that I was basically upsetting one side while cutting the other... I didn’t measure it, but they can’t have been off by more than 1/32.” I gave up trying to make the cut with a hardy tool. It’s a struggle to keep the cut in-line when I can’t see it. I did a better job of stopping the taper at the correct place this time and I’m happy with the lengt
  11. Even better! Lol. I saw the driver laying there and assumed she was beating them in by hand. The co-op I used to work for wouldn’t let us put them in the pole holes under the pole. Spec is 2’ off the pole and 1’ under ground level (not that it really makes any difference, in the ground is in the ground). I was the new guy at the time so I got to drive the ground rods. Had to use the driver for the first couple weeks until somebody had mercy and showed me how to float them in.
  12. If they work let me know. I’m debating putting an upset right in front of the center punch to start the taper and give me a visual reference.
  13. When driving ground rods, it’s usually easier to “float” them in. Jam the rod into the ground by hand several times until you have ~6” of rod in the ground. With the rod in the ground, move it in a circle until you have created a “funnel.” Remove the rod (it should come out easily at this point) and fill the hole with water. Work the rod up and down in the hole without jamming it into the bottom (it will get stuck if you hit the bottom too hard), you are basically creating a water hammer to move the dirt. When the rod starts to feel “sticky” in the hole, remove and add more water. Rinse and re
  14. In linework, we call that “checking the pitch.” It is a much loved tradition for messing with the new guy. You ask if he has checked the pitch of “x” tool yet. It is vitally important, you see, to have tools with the appropriate pitch for “x” voltage, otherwise it will resonate with the sin wave of the voltage and destroy itself in your hand. When he give you a baffled look, you offer to show him how to check the pitch. If he is foolish enough to actually hand you “x” tool, you turn around and throw (pitch) it as hard as you can (preferably into something troublesome to retrieve it from)
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