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Messages - MDixon

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The Pub / Re: Hurricane broke the house I"m buying D:
« on: November 02, 2012, 02:23:33 PM »
I should have bowed out when the "tighten the bolts" comment was made...  ::)

The Pub / Re: Hurricane broke the house I"m buying D:
« on: November 02, 2012, 12:49:37 PM »
I'm not sure what exactly fried your breakers, but just changing them isn't a solution, it's a bandaid.

Take your money and go unless you are prepared to repair everything 100% which would mean after closing getting an electrician to check out the entire house and being prepared to fix what needs to be fixed.

Have you ever run electrical?  It works pretty much like this:

You have a mains connection in your house.  Power goes to the meter, into the electrical panel to a mains breaker.  What you need to do is have the utility remove the gold ring, remove the meter, and then you can mess with the main power breaker (replace, rewire, add stuff before the box).  For the breakers themselves, you shut the main breaker off and you're good (as long as you have the sense to work with electricity--remember there's still a HOT wire).

The mains line is aluminum.  The secondary circuits are all supposed to be copper.  Copper runs through your house to your sockets.  Hot, neutral, ground.  Has to be wired CORRECTLY to the sockets.

Breaker panel check:  open the panel, look.  Are the breakers wired properly?  Leads wound clockwise?  etc.

Socket test:  there's a plug-in device that not only tells you if it's right or not, but tells you if it's wired incorrectly and how.  Bad ground, neutral/hot swap, ground/neutral swap, and so on.

The wiring's pretty much checked by looking at the panel or at the socket (you'd have to go out of your way to do something wrong here and it would not be to code).  Basically is it the right gauge wire?

What do you think killed the breakers?  I'm going to go with "current overload," because it'll do that.  The typical way to fix this is "replace the breakers," that's the correct solution.  Breakers have failure modes and this is one of them.

Source:  Experience.  Father is an electrical engineer and has electrician experience.  Cousin works for the local electrical utility and has electrician experience ranging from home electrical wiring and inspection to opening and repairing transformers that are still hanging up on telephone poles (the big white buckets).  We've been through this before and I ask too many questions--hell I spent 20 minutes while putting in a floor asking what the difference is between a dead blow and a rubber hammer and why one would be superior to the other (we had to use a rubber hammer, it was tangentially interesting).  First time I saw an electrical panel open I wanted to know everything about how electricity works--did you know there's a sharp difference between braided and unbraided wire?  Braided wire has multiple contact points, and electricity travels more "within" instead of just "on the outside" and causes impedance (if you're passing AC).  This is important.


Okay, there's probably a real reason that panel's dead.  The power line is above ground, on poles, run through trees.  It's highly likely to take direct lightning strike--the trees don't have the same protection the poles do (you think they just jack them in there and hope they never get hit?).  So yeah, lightning, but it's highly likely to get hit by lightning.  The house is a Zeus magnet.

Thanks for the somewhat condescending reply (feel free to remove the word - somewhat). My father is an Electrician (now almost retired) and I have vast experience with it over the past 40 years, oh, did I also forget to mention I am a Professional Engineer and have even considered becoming certified to be a home inspector. It sounds as if you have pinpointed exactly what went wrong with the house electrical and how just changing out the breakers will fix it.  :o

If it blew the breakers it likely burned the insulation off the wiring at some point and that wiring will need to be replaced or it could start a fire if within the structure. Perhaps I should have stated that from the get do I know...experience! You could also have individual switches which are toast, ballasts in fluorescent lighting, contacts in various appliances, etc.

PS: They are outlets, not sockets. ::)

I stand by my advice given earlier and will remember to keep it to myself if you post a thread asking advice in the future.

The Pub / Re: Hurricane broke the house I"m buying D:
« on: November 01, 2012, 01:53:20 PM »
I'm not sure what exactly fried your breakers, but just changing them isn't a solution, it's a bandaid.

Take your money and go unless you are prepared to repair everything 100% which would mean after closing getting an electrician to check out the entire house and being prepared to fix what needs to be fixed.

The Pub / Re: Zombie apoclypse survival....
« on: October 31, 2012, 07:01:16 AM »

Events / Re: NHC 2013 Hotel?
« on: October 24, 2012, 05:16:07 AM »
it is most likely going to be at the Pennsylvania Convention Center

The Convention Center, yeah.  But does that have hotel rooms?'s not the CC.  The AHA will announce the hotel by February.

See, I don't have a nice way to put it, this wait stuff is BS. Prior to last year the conference was available for purchase by November and the hotel was publicized as well. By the time I had decided whether or not I could attend the conference last year it was already sold out.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Holy Hell....its hot-side aeration
« on: October 21, 2012, 11:05:39 AM »
I'm a firm believer that pre-boil HSA doesn't exist. However on the other side of the boil I'm not as adamant.

My suggestion would be to change your process and eliminate all sources of aeration until the wort is relatively cool (say less than 80F). Then evaluate your beers and see if they have changed significantly. Now don't change anything else or you'll never pinpoint the reason for what you are tasting.

The Pub / Re: Returning Commercial Kegs
« on: October 16, 2012, 04:58:52 AM »
Part of the problem is the distributors don't care because they have no skin in the game. Our local lost almost $45k in kegs in one year because the distributor did not track them down, or perhaps better said, did not track them at all. For a small brewery that is a kiss of death and they are lucky they got by.

Good on you for trying to return the kegs. If it were me I'd go to my local bottle shop who sells kegged beer and ask if I could leave them with him. They generally will be in contact with all the major distributors.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: DFH b****es Brew
« on: October 12, 2012, 12:32:13 PM »
Even better if you run across it on draft. I just found it overly dry.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Cramming for a BJCP Tasting Exam
« on: October 03, 2012, 05:21:25 AM »
Just to point out, you do not need to be a BJCP judge to organize a sanctioned competition.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: DFH b****es Brew
« on: October 03, 2012, 05:08:57 AM »
I'm gonna bump this one to the top. I did not find any when it was first released and now our area is getting it in bottles. I happened upon it on draft the other night and found it dry, bone dry in fact. Just didn't quite work for me, but the bottles might prove different. I know people who got it raved about this when it first came out, but I wonder if that was partly based on hype or if that original beer was that much better.

Or I am just getting old and picky?  :o

The Pub / Re: Credit cards
« on: September 28, 2012, 06:28:21 AM »
Part of your credit score is the amount of credit utilized vs available. So if you have like a $1000 limit and use 50% of that on a monthly basis and everything else is equal you will have a lower credit score than someone with a $25000 limit and using that same $500 per month.

Homebrew Clubs / Very proud of CARBOY!
« on: August 29, 2012, 06:34:20 AM »
Words don't express how proud I am of CARBOY (Cary-Apex-Raleigh Brewers Of Yore), our local homebrewing club. I had nothing to do with this particular event, but much of the rest of the club participated and helped with all the organization. In the end the bottle auction held on Saturday raised almost $15,000 to help one of our members who had an accident which damaged his spinal cord.

The photos from the event are here:

If you care to make a contribution to Jarrad's recovery fund the information is here:

There are rumblings we may make this an annual charitible event.

- -

It should be noted another NC club, CBM, has donated a total of over $350,000 to charity and civic organizations since 2001 starting with a $1,000 donation in 2001

Beer Travel / Re: Brewpubs in Culpeper, VA?
« on: August 04, 2012, 04:31:03 AM »
Once upon a time I had to spend a few days in Altoona, PA for work. Things may have changed since then, but there was a whole lotta nothing there back then. I drove to State College...

Beer Travel / Re: Brewpubs in Culpeper, VA?
« on: August 03, 2012, 06:27:48 AM »
I think you are SOL.

You can drive over to Fredericksburg and there is a Capital Ale House

Or down to Charlottesville and not too far away in Crozet is Starr Hill (not a brewpub, but has a tasting room). If you do hit Charlottesville, my favorite watering holes are Timberwood Grill, Mellow Mushroom and Beer Run. I haven't been to Michael's in forever and I hear good things about Horse & Hound Gastropub. South Street is a brewpub in Cville, but I haven't been there in a very long time.

If you feel like driving a little further you can go to Blue Mountain Brewery (brewpub) or Devil's Backbone (brewpub) and there is one called Wild Wolf (brewpub) I am not familiar with.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: re-using cooling water
« on: July 19, 2012, 04:29:16 AM »
I have used our collected water in rain barrels for initial cooling and then a recirculating ice bucket to finish the job. It works well, but the dragging hoses and setting it up it a pain.

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