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Underground wire locator circuit anyone?

Discussion in 'Electronic Projects Design/Ideas/Reviews' started by Analog, Jul 25, 2006.

  1. ronsimpson

    ronsimpson Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    I just went back into an old post from months ago. See below. I use radio waves.

    Cable and pipe tracer.

    I needed to build one in an evening to track the water pipe and 110 volt wires going from the house to the well. With no water time was critical. (make it simple)

    The receiver: Use an AM portable radio.

    The transmitter: 9 volt battery, LM78L05 voltage regulator, 1000pf 500 volt capacitor, two alligator clips, crystal, and 74HC4060 osc/counter. The 500 volt capacitor blocks DC and 60hz AC from coming into the output stage. I chose a crystal frequency with a harmonic in a quite place on the radio dial. The 74HC4060 has many Q-outputs. One of the outputs had an approximately 2khz tone. Using a simple OR circuit I summed the CLK2 and 2khz together. The output was a square wave with a harmonic at 1mhz, turned on/off by a 2khz square wave.

    To use:
    (ground lead from transmitter) Connect one alligator clip to ground, or your metal tool box, or a 2 foot piece of wire. Almost any thing.
    (signal lead with DC blocking capacitor) Connect one alligator clip to the wire or pipe you want to trace.
    Wave the radio near the wire/pipe. Twist the radio around. Most AM radios are more sentient in one direction.

    I followed a, 5 foot, buried wire 50 feet. At the house I could hold the radio and walk. At 50 feet I had to set the radio on the round to detect the wire.
     
  2. Centretek

    Centretek New Member

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    Gee you blokes make EVERYTHING complicated.
    The device in the original question, introduces an 8KHz square wave signal into the cable. Because it is a square wave, a portion of the signal is in the RF band and is readily picked up by a high gain amplifier with an unbalanced input.
    The closer you get , the louder the signal. A simple slope detector (eg crystal set) feeds to an earphone so you hear the 8KHz audio tone.
     
  3. Menticol

    Menticol Active Member

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    I've exhumated this buried thread to avoid creating a repeated one.

    Do you think this circuit deserves a try?
     

    Attached Files:

  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. audioguru

    audioguru Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    The telephone guy had a very expensive high tech tracer for buried wires. He connected part of it at my house and traced the cable TV cable and found buried old car parts. Then he traced my telephone cable on the other side of my yard.
    The cable was broken so deep that he used a ladder in the hole that was dug by a machine.
     
  6. Menticol

    Menticol Active Member

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    At least you didn't found bones from an ancient cementery :D

    I'm not going to search below ground, instead, I'm working on a house where the wiring was done avoiding ALL construction codes as possible. I wonder if there is wiring buried into the walls or concrete, without pipes! :mad:
     
  7. audioguru

    audioguru Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    I have never seen a house with electric wires in metal conduits. I could put a nail for hanging a picture and the nail might short the electric wires in the wall. Or the nail could be "hot". Or the nail could make a weak spot on the electric wire.
     
  8. Menticol

    Menticol Active Member

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    Neither I. Wiring is always ducted through pvc tubes, at least here.

    I blew a 120 VAC line with a drill bit. The explosion was great! Routing the wire through another location was easier than replacing the damaged one.

    As I was saying, 1950's homes where made by empirical workers. Instalations without breakers, wires that travel from a switch in the living room to a light in the bathroom (tens of meters away), embeeded lighting fixtures and wiring into concrete, solidified electric tape that cracks with the wind, and lots of spiders and bugs. Pretty cool!

    So, building the tracer is a must for me
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2009
  9. user_88

    user_88 Member

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  10. butgoose

    butgoose New Member

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    hi people im new to this site why cant i start a new thread?
     
  11. audioguru

    audioguru Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    My first home had huge aluminum electrical wires that wouldn't fit on the screws on switches and receptacles and all connections became loose and hot.
    I replaced every switch and receptacle with ones approved for aluminum wires and the screw heads were much bigger.
     
  12. Menticol

    Menticol Active Member

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    Thank you User_88 by your effort! You readed my mind, I'm adding a circuit breaker for the wall plugs, because there is not anyone.

    Unfortunetly I have no time or budget for import it :( maybe when I get more professional I'll need an equipment upgrade :)

    Aluminium wiring? never imagined it. I guess AWG standards doesn't apply, right?
     
  13. Analog

    Analog New Member

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    Wow, my thread was unburied! :D:D:D:D:D
     
  14. audioguru

    audioguru Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Copper wires in a home are 14AWG. The aluminum wires were huge, 12AWG or 10AWG. The metal is soft so it "creeps" and becomes loose under a screw head.
     
  15. Menticol

    Menticol Active Member

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    Hahaha, maybe "buried" was a too hard word... I need to expand my vocabulary :p

    I see finally you answered your question

    By the way, as no one warned me to do the opposite, I'll build the schematic I've posted before
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2009
  16. Binford

    Binford New Member

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    You built it, and did it work? What did you use for each of the IC's?

    [​IMG]


    Edit: found the link http://www.sentex.net/~mec1995/circ/foxhound.html
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2010
  17. canadaelk

    canadaelk Active Member

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    google 200FP filter probe by Tempo
     

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