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mislabeled conductor size

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    mislabeled conductor size

    So several years ago I order in some 350 THHN AL colors for a job. About 800 feet each white, black, red, blue. Vendor is Priority W&C. All goes fine. Fast forward to now, I am doing a few 320-400 amp services and need some short lengths, and have some of those colors left over so I dig them out to use. Im hooking up this one service and I notice that the white looks a little smaller. I check the printing and it definitly says 350 KCMIL. I get out the dial calipers and the conductor is about a hundred thousandths smallerthan the other colors, and corresponds to 250 KCMIL. Both are compact stranded so not confusion there. Someone must have mislabeled it at the factory. Fortunately it was the neutral, and I (meant to) use a full size, so its rally not an issue, but a pretty big screw up for a wire manufacturer. Imagine if it had been one of the phases?
    Ethan Brush - East West Electric. NY, WA. MA

    "You can't generalize"

    #2
    I would definitely contact the manufacturer. There is the possibility that they may have never caught it and might still be able to track the issue and stop more installations with it. They may also be wanting to get ahead of any liability issues that might come up later and be progressive about actually replacing some where it might make a difference. Heck, they might even assume you want to replace your installation and give you the proper wire. If they are REALLY serious about it, they'll pay you to repair the job.

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      #3
      Originally posted by MAC702 View Post
      I would definitely contact the manufacturer. There is the possibility that they may have never caught it and might still be able to track the issue and stop more installations with it. They may also be wanting to get ahead of any liability issues that might come up later and be progressive about actually replacing some where it might make a difference. Heck, they might even assume you want to replace your installation and give you the proper wire. If they are REALLY serious about it, they'll pay you to repair the job.
      I did mention it to the guy at the supply house I got it from (this was before I measured it with calipers) and he said to cut him off a piece and he would send it to priority. I will. What's the cost difference from 250 to 350, guessing 15- 20 cents? That's still $100 bucks, I'll take it.
      Ethan Brush - East West Electric. NY, WA. MA

      "You can't generalize"

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        #4
        Wow, it's hard to believe that a mistake like that passed the manufacturer's QC. It just goes to show that the end user is the final QC inspector. In the future, I'll be measuring all wire diameters before installation.

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          #5
          I am surprised I didn't notice it at all on that first job.
          Ethan Brush - East West Electric. NY, WA. MA

          "You can't generalize"

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            #6
            A bit of an update. I dropped off a piece of the conductor at the supply house today. The owner is often a bit grumpy, and today he was extra grumpy. I said that after thinking about it more, I would like the cost difference of the 350 I paid for vs the 250 I got. He said, "honestly I doubt they will do anything, that was what like two years ago?" I found myself really pissed off at his comment and attitude. You would think the manufacturer would be MORE THAN HAPPY to simply reimburse for the cost difference for this 700 feet of wire I installed That is potentially huge screw up. Also the supply house owner could use a lesson on customer relations. How about something like, "Yeah I will definitely see what I can do about that, they should be happy that you simply want the cost difference." What do you guys think, who is off base here?
            Ethan Brush - East West Electric. NY, WA. MA

            "You can't generalize"

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              #7
              I think this is one of those things that is best left as just a topic of conversation.
              If Billy Idol is on your playlist go reevaluate your life.

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                #8
                190816-2136 EDT

                Circa early 1972 I bought a batch of Cinch 22 (44) pin PC board connectors.

                An earlier batch I purchased in the fall of 1971 were perfectly fine, no problems.

                After assembling some mother boards from the 1972 batch and testing the final product I noticed problems. Easily detected by the PC board insertion force into the connector being low. From inspecting the connectors with low force it was obvious the insulator was cracking along the middle of the plastic molding.

                Called Cinch and questioned them about the problem. Their response was that my boards were too thick. I checked my board thickness, and it was not too thick. Called them back, and they still said I was doing something wrong.

                I had to produce product, and had no other choice than their connector. I could not redesign the mother boards for some other connector. Not all the Cinch sockets failed. So to meet my deadlines I just started testing the connectors with a severe mechanical loading, clamping the uninstalled socket and bending a PC board back and forth in the socket. This caused defective units to crack. Those that passed this test were used. I got about a 30% yield of usable connectors.

                Several months later Cinch apparently received enough other complaints that they then investigated the problem. They were pig headed in not paying attention to my complaint early on. Later in the spring they identified the problem as --- a mold design change had been made in December of 1971 that resulted in a loss of strength in the casting. I must have received some of their first new castings. By the time Cinch bothered to look into the problem they had over 100,000 defective connectors in stock, and I have no idea on how many were in the field.

                In any new designs I never used a Cinch PC board connector again.

                When someone indicates a possible problem look into it, don't ignore the information.

                .

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by electrofelon View Post
                  " What do you guys think, who is off base here?
                  I'm a big fan of training the manufacturers ans suppliers to provide quality (and service). I'm usually willing to pay more for better quality and service but I usually have to test for this. So my basic minimum is they have someone knowledgeable who picks up the phone or responds to email, and understands my concern. I am quick to call the factory as necessary, but to also see how their factory support is willing to go to help.

                  From there, I would expect they may be able to do what is within their power to do. Mostly, you are just the 30th person that day who knocked on their door and said they owed you money. So just getting someone to listen is a lot.

                  But they can offer account credits for damaged or shorted orders. I would say what you asked for is entirely within the normal business routine. They may need a higher level of approval because the books were closed on that year.

                  If not, I would usually say just complaining is necessary. Too many complaints trains the factory and the supplier to stop sending out crap.You have to help them with that.

                  Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate

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