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pitfire/electric kiln skeleton/lightning

updated mon 31 mar 97


ret on tue 11 mar 97

a couple of years ago, a neigbour of mine arrived at his farm gate on an
all-terrain vehicle, got off and tried to open the gate. He was
electrocuted (dead) by a residual electric charge left in the metal gate
from a stroke of lightning he did not even know had hit the gate a bit

We have terrible thunderstorms here, and now I alwasy throw my shoe, or
something,at the gate before I touch it.

12 Grantham Place
St. Albert, AB T8N 0W8
403 (458-3445); 403 (727-2395)

On Mon, 10 Mar 1997, Vivian Mills wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> June Perry wrote:
> >
> June:
> I don't understand why Touching an electric elememt after it is turned
> off is so dangerous, except for the heat part, of course----please
> explain.
> The only thing I can think of is that there might be some residual
> charge in the wire, sort of like a TV set, but I wouldn't think the kiln
> wires would have hold a charge, because there are no electrical
> components in a kiln, similar to a TV---????
> Can you explain? Thanks!
> Vivian
> > ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > I'm glad your friend is careful. But as I said before, putting anything meta
> > in an electric kiln while it's on, or having just been turned off is a
> > disaster waiting to happen. One touch of those tongs on an element can cause
> > her to have her fillings flying out of her teeth!
> >
> > Regards,
> > June

Tom Buck on wed 12 mar 97

Elke, June: The metal gate lacked a groundwire, common with farm gates;
hence the charge build-up that didn't have time to dissipate through slow
loss of charge to the moist air.
And in some older electric kilns, especially some assembled by
innocent potters, there is a no ground connection, just the two "hot"
wires that supply 240-volt electricity. And perhaps only one "leg" is
switched with a result that an element can still be "hot" (above ground)
although the switch is in the off position. This is what June is warning
against. And please note that it doesn't take much electric charge to stop
your heart working...and in 3-4 minutes you are brain-dead.
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada