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Topic Title: EICR - old switchgear
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Created On: 19 February 2014 03:56 PM
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 19 February 2014 03:56 PM
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leckie

Posts: 1605
Joined: 21 November 2008

Hi All,

Just been looking at a job for an EICR. Some of it is pretty old and there is not one main switch.

There is an old rewirable 20A Bill Radette TPN switchfuse fed in 10mm tails from service blocks. I am not sure what the category of fuse is so I am assuming a worse case breaking capacity of 1kA. More modern consumer units and dist boards have a breaking capacity of 16kA as part of the board standard; is switchgear as old as this covered the same?
 19 February 2014 04:22 PM
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Legh

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I would say that any tests would be to verify that it complied with the original design. A psc test less than 1kA would confirm, under the worst possible case, that it complied. Personally though, I would say that it was past its sell by date.

Legh

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 19 February 2014 04:31 PM
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leckie

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Well I do agree its past its sell by date, but I am always a bit concerned saying something is "unsatisfactory" on an EICR. I have only had a quick look so far and no testing, but I suspect that phase to phase it will be higher than the 1kA and if so I could probably give it a C2 and get it swapped.
 19 February 2014 05:43 PM
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OMS

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They still make the radette switch fuse.

With the rewirable fuse carriers, I think at best AC3 - but if memory serves, you can swap the fuses for BS 88's

Regards

OMS

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Failure is always an option
 19 February 2014 09:19 PM
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leckie

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I knew they still made the Radette switch fuse but I didn't know you could fit BS88. I will have to ring William, I mean Bill!
 20 February 2014 12:24 PM
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leckie

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Ive just had anther quick look around this building. I have just seen a few more of the Radette TPN switch fuses. These ones are 10A 3036 types. I can find a max value of Zs for 10A 3036. I was thinking of again adopting a worse case scenario and using the stated values for 15A but I just wondered if the values are available anywhere. Anyone know?
 20 February 2014 07:24 PM
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kirchoffs

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Bill Radette, Blimey i was only 16 when i first screwed one of them to the wall, using a hand jumper to make the holes for the rawl plugs
 20 February 2014 08:54 PM
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leckie

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Rawlplugs!! Luxury! When I was a lad plastic weren't invented! We had to use handmade wooden dowels!

But you try telling the kids of today; they wouldn't believe you!
 20 February 2014 11:04 PM
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kirchoffs

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Do you remember the old stuff you used to wet and then roll into a wad, then push in the hole ?.
Looking back i'm sure it was very much like asbestos based, it used to come in an orange tin.
 24 February 2014 01:35 PM
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AJJewsbury

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Do you remember the old stuff you used to wet and then roll into a wad, then push in the hole ?.
Looking back i'm sure it was very much like asbestos based, it used to come in an orange tin.

yes - I remember that too. I'm trying to remember what it was called. Great for filling funny shaped holes (like where the previous attempt had fallen out) - problem was that the usual reason for having a funny shaped hole was that the wall was crumbing in the first place, so the filler stuff didn't hold for very long either.

I have taken out things that were fitted using lead rawlplugs - shaped pretty much like modern plastic ones, but most definitely metallic!

- Andy.
 24 February 2014 01:49 PM
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iie63674

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Originally posted by: kirchoffs

Do you remember the old stuff you used to wet and then roll into a wad, then push in the hole ?.

Looking back i'm sure it was very much like asbestos based, it used to come in an orange tin.
Rawlplastic!
I found 3 boxes of it in the shed the other day. The council told me to double-bag it while wearing respiratory protection, and take it to the council tip myself, after making an appointment with their asbestos specialist.
 24 February 2014 02:01 PM
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Jaymack

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Originally posted by: kirchoffs
Do you remember the old stuff you used to wet and then roll into a wad, then push in the hole ?.

Not really, but then I didn't suffer from the dreaded complaint.

Looking back i'm sure it was very much like asbestos based, it used to come in an orange tin.

When I were a lad, heavy wall mounted equipment was mounted using bolts, with the heads to the bottom of the holes; thick walled, lead water pipe was then placed over the bolt diameter and rammed into position with a steel water pipe.

Regards
 24 February 2014 04:44 PM
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anastasis

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Originally posted by: Jaymack
When I were a lad, heavy wall mounted equipment was mounted using bolts, with the heads to the bottom of the holes; thick walled, lead water pipe was then placed over the bolt diameter and rammed into position with a steel water pipe.

Never seen that before, but I have seen coach bolts cemented into walls head-first to create mounting studs. It's amazing what they got up to in the stone age.
 24 February 2014 07:02 PM
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OMS

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LoL - stone age !!

Bolts leaded into a good wall, as Jaymack describes, have an incredibly high pull out force - once that lead sleeve starts to deform, it basically locks into both the bolt thread and every fissure in the masonry - and the more you hammer the lead sections in, the tighter it gets.

Regards

OMS

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Failure is always an option
 24 February 2014 07:43 PM
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Zs

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Never seen that before, but I have seen coach bolts cemented into walls head-first to create mounting studs. It's amazing what they got up to in the stone age.

What is amazing about that is that I do that myself but I thought I had invented it.

When I were a lad, a raw plug looked like a stick of liquorice and my Dad used to cut it to length and then add matchsticks if needed using a toffee hammer. In truth, I think that's just a small hammer on a normal length slim handle... I have a toffee hammer myself for exactly this use but I use sections of another plastic plug. Have often wished for some of those old plugs.

Zs
 24 February 2014 09:24 PM
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leckie

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For many, many, years, I have saved the tongue from floorboards when I have taken them up for rewiring.

When you need to clip into An old wall where the bricks are super hard
And the mortar courses are soft and crumbly, drill a hole into the brick, about 6mm, and then hammer the tongue into the hole. It will go in really tight. Then snap off flush with the brickwork, I use an old wood chisel, and you then have a perfect fixing for a cable clip. I promise after many years of doing stuff, this is the best way!

As for rawplugs! My dad used to cut a twig from a bush, about 1/4 inch diameter, and cut them to a suitable length. He then drill a hole into the masonry and hammered in the length of twig. If you look at the middle of the cut piece of twig, there is a core, like a hole. This was used to start the screw into. My dad was an Irish genius!
 24 February 2014 09:33 PM
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leckie

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The grey asbestos type stuff... Towards the end of. The 70's, there was some stuff in a blue and orange box that was like a dry rod of asbestos looking stuff, about 11/2 inch by 3/8 of an inch. This was mixed with a little water and pushed into a irregular holes in old wall that would not take a rawplug. It was then rammed into the hole to compact it with something like a large nail punch. You let it dry and then you put a screw in it! There was always a way even back nearly forty years ago!

Zs , I found some of those fibre rawplugs (liquorice) a few weeks ago when I cleared out my dad's old shed. I also found a full roll of black insulation tape. It was made of impregnated cloth, and was often found on jobs when I first started straight over bare twisted cables!
 25 February 2014 12:04 PM
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OMS

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also found a full roll of black insulation tape. It was made of impregnated cloth, and was often found on jobs when I first started straight over bare twisted cables!


Blakey Tape, it was called - some claimed the adhesive had antiseptic properties, so it was also used as "plasters" for all those little nicks and abrasions you got when stripping cable with a lambsfoot blade knife

Or so I'm told, being far to young to have actually used it

Regards

OMS

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Failure is always an option
 25 February 2014 01:46 PM
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Jaymack

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Originally posted by: leckie
I also found a full roll of black insulation tape. It was made of impregnated cloth,

We would amuse ourselves by unrolling it in the dark, to see a row of blue sparks as it peeled off the roll, this was caused by static.

Regards
 25 February 2014 06:23 PM
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leckie

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Talking of old stuff.... I have a book at the minute showing how to bend conduit. It. Involves some balls that are joined together with some wire I think an dropping them into the tube. And then bending the tube. Bit like a bending spring but made of balls! The book is something like 1930's.

I will be trying it next week after I have mastered wiping joints with my bit of moleskin.
IET » Wiring and the regulations » EICR - old switchgear

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