# "It's not the volts that kill, you its the amps"

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#### ()blivion

##### Active Member

One thing to remember about keeping food practices safe is that just because you cook thoroughly, doesn't mean you can't get food poisoning. Salmonella for example releases a neurotoxin that can linger in your food whether cooked well or not. I believe botulism is the same as well. If the microbes grow to sufficient numbers in the food, they can chemically alter it enough to be inedible; regardless of how well you cook it.

##### Well-Known Member
Well my little hot dog story was taken from a 1959 Popular Electronics magazine. I wonder how different hot dogs were in 1959 as compared to today as to the additives? I was 9 years old when plugging hot dogs into the household AC Mains. They tasted good then and I was spared electrocution cooking them up. That project fared much better than an earlier experiment when I shoved a butter knife in an old Proctor Silex toaster out of curiosity.

Since I took this off topic I am sorry. However, my taste in hot dogs has improved as now I only eat all beef and prefer casing on type hot dogs that sort of "snap" when you bite into them. Figure I'll be 63 in a few months and those hot dogs have yet to kill me.

Ron

#### ClydeCrashKop

##### Well-Known Member
I moved this here so as not to hijack this thread. http://www.electro-tech-online.com/...-ac-currents-and-live-and-neutral-wires.7018/
Which was talking about 120 v, 240 v, neutral and 230 volts in Europe.

I guess I am lucky in that I don't conduct electricity very well. Actually, electricity turns me on! I get zapped by 120 volts once in a while and it's just a tingle / buzz. I have been hit by 240 volts a couple times and that is REALLY annoying!
So is the average mortal man more likely to get electrocuted in Europe than U.S.?

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#### MrAl

##### Well-Known Member
Hi,

Well 240v had twice the potential to kill as does 120v, but that's not the only factor. If you find yourself dealing with 240v instead of 120v you might be twice as careful. So we'd have to find out if anyone did a study on this or not and see what comes up.

I sort of wish we had 220 here in the US where our power grid is not so good anymore. But then again i might not be here today if we did.

#### crutschow

##### Well-Known Member
...............................
I sort of wish we had 220 here in the US where our power grid is not so good anymore. .........................
220V only applies to the voltage going from the local transformer to the residence. It has no effect on the grid, since the grid still has to deliver the same amount of power at whatever high voltage the grid uses.

#### ()blivion

##### Active Member
I sort of wish we had 220 here in the US where our power grid is not so good anymore.
Most all US homes are actually fitted for at least 240 Volts, it's just bi-phase with a neutral in between.

#### KeepItSimpleStupid

##### Well-Known Member
Klyde:

it's kinda hard to get zapped by 240 VAC in the US because of the bi-phase system.

I respect electricity. A srark plug wire from a mower is a likely culpret. But I'm more careful around TV anodes (40 kV or so) and stuff I messed around with at work: 100 kV at 0.1 amps, 15 kV at 1.5 Amps, and a 1000 W into 50 ohms tube xmitter at 13.56 MHz and the 40 KV AC spark ignitor. All deadly.

One piece of equipment had a 208 V 3 phase 70 Amp input. Basically a house that you plug into a wall.
One piece of equipment took 200 A 208 v 3 phase as input. Basically a subpanel's worth of power.

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#### kinarfi

##### Well-Known Member
You really haven't been nailed until you get nailed with 277, that's a single leg of 480 Y to ground, it's so intense that you can count the cycles as they go through you, it's the type that kicks you loose and it definitely HURTz

#### ClydeCrashKop

##### Well-Known Member
The 240V hits were probably playing with capacitor type phase converters on my machinery. I stay away from CRTs too and normally don't intentionally tempt fate.

When I worked at a car dealer, a detail guy was harassing the mechanics. He said "Pink Boys" are wimps. I pulled a plug wire and started a car I was tuning. I put one hand on the valve cover and held an air blower nozzle by the distributor with the other. Sparks were jumping at least an inch and my right arm was involuntary jumping about 6 inches with every spark. After about 10 hits, I went to hand him the blower nozzle. He ran like hell!

#### tvtech

##### Well-Known Member

There are those out there that claim EHT from a CRT TV can not kill. I agree......depends if the Line Stage is running or not....

1. Line Stage not running and Tube charged up still = a nasty belt, and it's over. Worst is a broken Tube and a shock and a lesson learned.
2. Line Stage is running....anything can happen. You are going to have a huge lousy experience. That 25 to 30 KV is looking for the shortest path to Ground. And you might just be it.

The guy I work with opposite me got lax a few Weeks ago. I warned him repeatedly his is going to get bitten. Would not listen and EHT taught him a lesson that gave him a huge wake up call. A big strong guy who has learned his lesson.

In trying to get rid of the EHT shocking him, he managed to smash the Tube, Cabinet and break the PCB into four pieces.

No photo's... I was not there at the time. But it happened.

Lesson learn't. I respect EHT. At all times.

Maybe he will too now.

Regards,
tvteech

#### DerStrom8

##### Super Moderator

Don't forget that Thomas Edison, who was always pushing for his DC power distribution systems, declared that DC is relatively safe and that AC kills, which is why they use AC for the executioner's electric chair.
Yup, which is pretty much a load of crap. The safety differences are marginal at best.
DC actually tends to be more dangerous than AC due to the "can't let go" factor. In most AC circuits it's much easier to let go when you receive a shock, whereas in DC it's a continuous flow of current that can keep you from pulling away. Also, continuous current causes the conductor to heat up, which can cause fires and other serious problems. That was one of the main things happening back in the late 1800s/early 1900s that led to Tesla trying to show the dangers of DC and present his idea for alternating current. Edison's DC system led to hundreds of electrocutions and house fires, as well as overloaded dynamos, etc. Personally, I think that once Tesla demonstrated his AC system, Edison realized that his system was inferior and much more dangerous, but he was a stubborn businessman and he refused to budge. He was very prideful, which ultimately led to his defeat in the Battle of the Currents.

It's also important to note that the first execution by electric chair was a complete failure. The first 17 seconds rendered the victim unconscious, but not dead. After several more surges of alternating current, the victim's blood vessels had ruptured and the body was burning, yet he was still alive. The entire execution took eight minutes. So Edison's claim that AC was much more dangerous than DC was seriously flawed and circumstantial, at best.

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#### KeepItSimpleStupid

##### Well-Known Member
We need to re-visit a story of mine. I was a teenager sanding a car with an unbknownst to me a bad flat extension cord. I was barefoot, shirtless and lying on my side on the ground and no one was home,

So what happened? I caught the extension cord between my toes and could not let go. After a few seconds, I decided to let out a voluntary scream.

That was enough of a diversion to trick the body from responding to the foot stimulus that I was able to break away. The screaming was a conscious decision and it worked.

I have also been in the situation where you are so scared (no electricity involved), your legs won't move. Not sure how to break that consciously. I was probably 10-12 years old.

#### Vizier87

##### Active Member
i wonder if a shock from a fly swatter is dangerous enough. I zapped myself once just out of curiosity and it hurt the heck outta myself.

#### ClydeCrashKop

##### Well-Known Member
The power system of the Long Island Railroad consists of three- phase alternating current transmission at 11,000 volts, 25 cycles. Rotary converter substations convert this A.C. power to 700 volt DC third rail power at. 13,000 amps. Because extremely high voltages exist in sub-stations, no entry should be made into the area.
A friend of mine was a big shot electrical engineer and programmer for the Long Island Railroad. He said a big problem that they have is disconnecting that DC when trains are running. He said the arcing wouldn't quit and would melt the contacts, so they use hydraulic pressure to open the contacts and force dielectric oil between them to extinguish the arc.
That is some serious electricity!

#### MrAl

##### Well-Known Member
220V only applies to the voltage going from the local transformer to the residence. It has no effect on the grid, since the grid still has to deliver the same amount of power at whatever high voltage the grid uses.
Hi,

Yes it would not make much positive difference for the grid itself you're right. For my indoor wiring however it would be really nice
With the smaller wire sizes id be able to effectively get more power through the same cables. With 120 at 20 amps i get 120*20 watts but with 240 i'd get 240*20 watts which is twice as much power through the same in-wall line.

I'd even be willing to get transformers for devices i didnt want to replace entirely.

In fact 220 or 240 might even put more demand on the grid

Yes i know we get 220 also, but to actually get it to every room in the house would require rewiring the main box and upgrading the breakers and possibly some other stuff like making sure the older wiring can handle a voltage that is twice as high.

#### KeepItSimpleStupid

##### Well-Known Member
Typically 240 is wired in a home run situation and not daisy chained. Daisy chaining may be illegal per NEC.

The plugs and receptacles for 240 are available in twist lock as well. A 60 A 4-wire receptacle could set you back $50 and the plug another 50. This is compared to a$.59 receptacle and the plug is molded into the typical cord.

But your thinking about the 20 A 240 V receptacles. One prong twisted.

20 A 120 V is better for kitchens too.

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