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Thread: Touching 120V wires

  1. #11
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    When I volunteered at a science museum, one of the demos was a hand crank magneto connected to a simple current limiting circuit, connected with wire to a pair of hand held electrodes. You would have someone hold the electrodes and crank the magneto, and they would get shocked.

    It was current limited and not dangerous, simply very noticeable. Some people really liked the shocks, other people hated them, and some people didn't like them but seemed to enjoy demonstrating how much they could tolerate something they didn't like.

    'TENS' units, which use electricity to stimulate nerves and muscle contraction are well known and apparently have healing and pain reduction benefits.

    -Jon

  2. #12
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    From Wiki:

    Electrical stimulation for pain control was used in ancient Rome, 63 A.D. It was reported by Scribonius Largus that pain was relieved by standing on an electrical fish at the seashore.
    Cheers and Stay Safe,

    Marky the Sparky

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by K8MHZ View Post
    AMERICAN ELECTRICIANS' HANDBOOK 7th Edition 1953 McGraw-Hill MEASURING, TESTING, AND INSTRUMENTS

    154. Electricians often test circuits for the presence of voltage by touching the conductors with the fingers. This method is safe where the voltage does not exceed 250 and is often very convenient for locating a blown-out fuse or for ascertaining whether or not a circuit is alive. Some men can endure the electric shock that results without discomfort whereas others cannot. Therefore, the method is not feasible in some cases. Which are the outside wires and which is the neutral wire of a 115/230-volt, three-wire system can be determined in this way by noting the intensity of the shock that results by touching different pairs of wires with fingers. Use the method with caution and be certain that the voltage of the circuit does not exceed 250 before touching the conductors.
    "I don't think so, Tim!"
    Code references based on 2005 NEC
    Larry B. Fine
    Master Electrician
    Electrical Contractor
    Richmond, VA

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Besoeker View Post
    An electrical safety training course, the trainer stated that the lowest voltage that carried a risk of fatal electrocution was 70Vac..
    Big difference.
    When I was a kid, my parents owned an AC/DC portable tube radio that contained a 90v Eveready battery. The connector was like the snaps on a 9v battery, but much larger.

    That thing provided quite the jolt! And it's said that DC shocks are worse for a given voltage. I'm convinced.
    Code references based on 2005 NEC
    Larry B. Fine
    Master Electrician
    Electrical Contractor
    Richmond, VA

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by hello21 View Post
    Ok, this is going to sound crazy, but a electrician came to my house to install a water heater and told me that touching 110V coming out of the outlet has healing effects. Regardless of the healing aspect, I was more curious how he hasn't died the many times he has done this. He went into his truck, stripped a standard cord, plugged into the outlet in my garage, and touched two exposed ends. He felt a vibration, but was fine (the green ground wire was left unconnected). I don't get it. I didnt want to get anywhere near him to test current and validate voltage, but he offered the cable to me to touch. Even though I had no intention to try it myself, since he offered the cable to me I trust he wasn't tricking me, otherwise I would have been hurt and he would have been sued ans lost his job.

    Any thoughts?
    If he really said "touching 110V," it tells me he doesn't know what he's talking about. There's no such thing as 110V anymore.....it's all 120V. Ditto for 115V.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by LarryFine View Post
    First of all, I HATE getting shocked! It hasn't happened to me in years, because I'm careful, but it has happened. A bad shock affects me emotionally.

    It surprised me how little a finger-to-finger shock felt on one hand, but never surprises me much it hurts from hand to foot or other parts of the body.

    I have seen guys intentionally touch wiring to test for power, but I have never done that, and don't intend to start any time soon. That's just nuts.

    Healing powers? I'm very doubtful.
    I'm right there with you
    I can build anything you want if you draw a picture of it on the back of a big enough check.

    There's no substitute for hard work....but that doesn't mean I'm going to give up trying to find one.

    John Childress
    Electrical Inspector
    IAEI / CEI / C10
    Certified Electrical Inspector

  7. #17
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    Just to be clear, no Moderators, Admin or owner of this Forum is condoning this unsafe practice.
    "You can't fix stupid"!
    If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time!

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    Quote Originally Posted by rambojoe View Post
    ill second K8- and im suprised every reply is not telling this op how stupid his electrician is. and wrong.
    I wasn't condoning what he is doing in my earlier post, just explaining why it might not effect this guy same way it does some people. He still has a great risk of finding himself in wrong conditions if he continues to intentionally do this, and unfortunately there is no second chances should that happen.
    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by K8MHZ View Post
    AMERICAN ELECTRICIANS' HANDBOOK 7th Edition 1953 McGraw-Hill MEASURING, TESTING, AND INSTRUMENTS

    154. Electricians often test circuits for the presence of voltage by touching the conductors with the fingers. This method is safe where the voltage does not exceed 250 and is often very convenient for locating a blown-out fuse or for ascertaining whether or not a circuit is alive. Some men can endure the electric shock that results without discomfort whereas others cannot. Therefore, the method is not feasible in some cases. Which are the outside wires and which is the neutral wire of a 115/230-volt, three-wire system can be determined in this way by noting the intensity of the shock that results by touching different pairs of wires with fingers. Use the method with caution and be certain that the voltage of the circuit does not exceed 250 before touching the conductors.
    Priceless. As with many things in life we would not think of doing today, this was considered a standard procedure. It's a wonder many of on the older side are still alive.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by texie View Post
    Priceless. As with many things in life we would not think of doing today, this was considered a standard procedure. It's a wonder many of on the older side are still alive.
    As the saying goes, there are old electricians, and there are bold electricians, but there are very few old bold electricians...

    I have been shocked several times and survived them all, so far as I can tell (sometimes I wonder if I am in purgatory though...) In each case there were at least TWO points of contact; one to a live conductor, the other to a grounded surface or another conductor. Every one of them hurt like HELL! Some have left scars. Nothing "healing" about that in any way.

    For you to be seriously injured by electricity it must flow THROUGH your body. Most of the time because of sweat, the surface of your skin is more conductive than your innards, so the current passes OVER your vital organs rather than through them. Touching ONE wire on a 110V outlet while standing on a dry surface wearing insulating shoes and not touching any other grounded surface will not likely cause any damage. Nor will it "heal" you either...

    But this is NOT something you want to count on.
    Last edited by Jraef; 12-24-18 at 04:04 AM.
    __________________________________________________ ____________________________
    Many people are shocked when they discover I am not a good electrician...

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