Old 10-15-00, 05:50 AM
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To everyone here I have been coming here for a couple of years now and the number of knowledgeable people that have joined in is really great,and you all have taught me a lot.I think that we all need reminders once in a while so here i go. Just because something is allowed by code or it may be safe in your house or mine it may not be safe in the hands of someone with less knowledge,example is multi wire circuits to me they are one of the most dangerous things allowed by the NEC, and another is allowing conduit to be used as the ground.If conduit breaks or comes apart there goes the ground if you only turn off one breaker on a multi wire and you unhook the neutral bing shock injury ot destruction of items exist.So when you post answers please keep in mind the person asking and under what conditions it will be used.I beleive we have a tendency to forget that sometimes ok I'll get off my soap box and take my lashes with some #22 gage wire,but do think about this
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Old 10-15-00, 11:23 AM
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Doc, although I agree with you in principle, the best we can do is answer the questions asked. We have no way of judging the experience level of the person who asked the question.

I think most of the responsibility for caution needs to be on the part of the person receiving the advice. Here are some common principles that all posters should know:
(1) The person providing advice may sound knowledgable, but may be making it all up.
(2) There are ALWAYS very important factors involved in the project that are NOT covered by the answer.
(3) The person providing advice may have completely misunderstood your question. This person almost always makes certain unstated assumptions about your situation.
(4) Codes vary from city to city, and from year to year.

In my opinion, the most productive questions and answers are situations in which the poster already knows 98% of what he/she needs, and is just looking for the last 2%. Questions such as "how do I wire my house" are always problematic.

But thanks for your warning. It is something we need to think about.
Old 10-17-00, 03:22 PM
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I respect your concerns and want to compliment you on issuing them in an elegant manner. I think we all can make mistakes but I feel the desire is well intended by those that have been replying.

I believe that your worries over conduit being used as a grounding path may be answered in the next two or three code cycles. It is becoming a strong subject in the industry. I suspect that charts and limitations concerning conduits as a grounding path will appear soon in the NEC.

Your mention of multiwire circuits is right because of the skill level required to know how they must be designed. However, one of the first multi wire circuits we install is at the main service. The feeders between the meterbase and the panel that delivers power throughout the house is also a multi-wire circuit. These feeders supply both 240volt and 120 volt circuits.

As an inspector I very seldom find an electrician running a multi-wire branch circuit in a dwelling. Most multi-wire branch circuits that I find are in conduit designed commercial or industrial settings.

You provided good info to think on.

I agree, we must use caution in our replies.

Old 10-17-00, 07:32 PM
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I'm guilty. I've advised a few people on wiring a multiwire circuit. I have told them to tie the breakers tho and pigtail the neutrals. I think I'll stop advising this. It's tempting though when you have a j box with the capability of supplying 2 circuits and not using it. It's also hard to ignore a question, like if someone wants a multiwire circuit and asks, what can you do? Say no... I would like to compliment you guys on your knowledge, especially wgoodrich, I know basic wiring and I like to answer basic questions, but I don't have near the knowledge you guys have. You'll even see some questions from me here once in a while. (my house is in a constant state of upgrade). Some of the questions scare me sometimes, but then I like to think the person must know something or they wouldn't be asking.
Old 10-18-00, 09:43 AM
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Handyone believe me I am a long way from being an expert,so I am always either asking or reading and still going huh all the time.What I really am getting at is some one that when you read the post that it just jumps out that tells you they either have no or very littl;e knowledge of electrical such as where does the white wire go or do i put the 2 white on the silver bar type folks. We all know that you learn by asking but think we have to carry answers to this person a little further than just a yes,NEVER STOP ASKING OR TEACHING THOUGH FOR IF YOU DO YOU'LL NEVER CATCH A FISH
Old 10-18-00, 10:29 AM
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I also appreciated your sentiments. I am happy to have been able to help a bunch of folks here in this forum, and am grateful for help received. I have seen, when one of us has been technically incorrect, some very thoughtful and kind corrections, nobody seeming to feel the need to be THE expert who needs to put the errant one in their place. As a fellow human being, I'm certainly capable of saying something goofy from time to time. But when I'm here I feel that I can offer my opinion as if I'm among friends, without the feeling that if I'm wrong the next guy will come along and slap me around. I thank you all for creating this kind of environment.

Even so, I'm always concerned that a poster may take everything I say as fact and go out and blow themselves up or burn down their house. So before I post a reply I like to be fairly confident it will be good advice, and that I have some sense of the skill and knowledge level of the poster before I go and shoot my mouth off. Still, I agree with John Nelson that it is wisest for the poster to consider the source, evaluate the advice received here, and even to get an outside opinion.

I also want to say that I have learned a lot from our fellow respondents, and I'm grateful to all of you. You guys rock.


[This message has been edited by JuiceHead (edited October 18, 2000).]

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