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Thread: While I'm at it ....

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    TMO
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    Default While I'm at it ....

    Anyone else ever wish there was a good way to connect a tracer to a steel gas service ? i"d like to hear what others do when faced with this---- I constantly come across a riser ( usually poly ) , sometimes with a tracer , sometimes not at all , and i find that it wont run , so i dig it down to where the riser laterals toward the main. When i get lucky and find the poly riser is sleeved inside a steel service that has been cut loose , i vice-grip it , then direct connect to my vice-grips. I sure wish there was a decent way to connect a tracer to the steel , instead of having to bury it back , only having to dig again if i ever rearrive on the same site again.. i have used what ive had on hand and just used kliens to twist a wire tight as i can around the steel, but i know that a shanty ,and very unreliable connection. i thought of using a hose clamp and clamping a wire on , but i figured maybe someone else may know more than i . I thought i'd heard of a 'cap' of some kinda , rumor from another pro, but nothing good as of late.
    I carry sta-con connectors so i can add to a tracer that i may find below grade ,and add enough so it can be found easily around the riser, but i come across a wire that is just as neat as you please above grade , only to find its just run 12 inches down to nothingness along the riser..uurrgh!

    So lets hear it !! Watchagot?

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    When we located gas and we ran into a problem like that all we had to do was call the gas company and tell them the tracer was missing. They would come out and fix it in a reasonable amount of time. Other than that, without actually soldering the tracer to the pipe you run the risk of having a trace wire that won't work after a while due to corrosion.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    you actually dig it up???? here in this state we call that turn back! we dont even mess with that !
    wise men talk because they have something to say and fools because they have to say something....plato

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Quote Originally Posted by yahoo View Post
    you actually dig it up???? here in this state we call that turn back! we dont even mess with that !
    I carry a garden trowel just for that. Homeowners bury those tracer wires all the time, some even cut them off at ground level.

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    I carry a $1 plastic hand trowel in my truck. I have had several homeowners and landscapers cut the wire. I have to dig down almost a foot several times to find the wire. If I do not find it you would have to call the gas dispatcher and find out what type of service to the house. This company didn't show services on prints or what type they were. Had to dig and find out what type and if still can not locate it we had to have supervisor come out and then we could call it in as unlocatable. I had a subcontractor put in a PE gas main into two different subdivisions but didn't put in any end of main markers and tracer wires sticking out of ground. When the housing boom was going I was calling in unlocatable maiins in for every foundation and water and sewer install. That got the gas company out there in a hurry to correct the issue. They would insert a 1/2" pe inside a 3/4" steel along with the tracer wire if they had to replace the steel service. Remove the old stel riser and use one designed for the pe service.

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    TMO
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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    We all carry a sharp shooter with us , i may one of the rare ones that use mine, but ... I just have to give it my best effort before i turn it over to a trouble locate . I look at it from the stand point of the trouble team , if they were to show up , and the service only took 10 minutes of digging to find a perfectly good , usable tracer , then i kinda look like a douche. and i believe in being the master of my own area, in other words , if there is a line that is a real booger , i want to know why. maybe even who , what and when . I've broke thin layered asphalt before to dig up a service in a parking lot with no wire showing. I felt i had to , i was in San Angelo for a few days helping out a crew that had some serious 'issues' , and it was my first locate on my first day there. Turned out to get turned over to the trouble team as unlocatable anyway, but there is no way i'd walk away without at least trying to get on it and run it . Being tagged as 'lazy' or 'weak' just hasnt been an issue for me. Never will.

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    TMO
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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Quote Originally Posted by paintitnow View Post
    I carry a $1 plastic hand trowel in my truck. I have had several homeowners and landscapers cut the wire. I have to dig down almost a foot several times to find the wire. If I do not find it you would have to call the gas dispatcher and find out what type of service to the house. This company didn't show services on prints or what type they were. Had to dig and find out what type and if still can not locate it we had to have supervisor come out and then we could call it in as unlocatable. I had a subcontractor put in a PE gas main into two different subdivisions but didn't put in any end of main markers and tracer wires sticking out of ground. When the housing boom was going I was calling in unlocatable maiins in for every foundation and water and sewer install. That got the gas company out there in a hurry to correct the issue. They would insert a 1/2" pe inside a 3/4" steel along with the tracer wire if they had to replace the steel service. Remove the old stel riser and use one designed for the pe service.
    These 'sleeved' poly services are what i find alot. I have gotton to know which crews of the local gas company installed which services, cause there are some that are just known for not installing , or not connecting a wire.

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    I had the same problem in several housing additions in Seattle, We were contract locating to help keep up with FTTP project. We usually called the Gas company and painted per records, but if none were available they would send out a trouble team. The trouble team consisted of a seasoned locator with a pipehorn who dropped the box to find poly gas services whos tracer wires were gone. Yes that was the solution he did find a few, the contractor found the rest. I have seen people attach them with JB weld, hose clamps, zip ties, cadwelds and even stripping a foot of wire and wrapping it around the pipe. The cadweld worked the best but hard to find for the application. The JB weld seemed to work i got a tone.

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    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    I don't believe you can induce a poly line without a tracer wire even using a Pipehorn. That would be more like witching than locating.
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    TMO
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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Yup, inducing poly is like trying to induce .....water.lol
    What is 'cadweld'?

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Quote Originally Posted by TMO View Post
    Yup, inducing poly is like trying to induce .....water.lol
    What is 'cadweld'?
    Cadweld is a welding device which consists of a powder and a mold. Place the mold over the wire you want to weld. Pour the powder in and then you light it through a touch hole in the mold, usually with a spark lighter like for a gas welder. The powder burns very hot and the metal shavings in the powder melt to form the weld. I have used these to weld cathodic protection wires to pipelines.

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Quote Originally Posted by TMO View Post
    We all carry a sharp shooter with us , i may one of the rare ones that use mine, but ... I just have to give it my best effort before i turn it over to a trouble locate . I look at it from the stand point of the trouble team , if they were to show up , and the service only took 10 minutes of digging to find a perfectly good , usable tracer , then i kinda look like a douche. and i believe in being the master of my own area, in other words , if there is a line that is a real booger , i want to know why. maybe even who , what and when . I've broke thin layered asphalt before to dig up a service in a parking lot with no wire showing. I felt i had to , i was in San Angelo for a few days helping out a crew that had some serious 'issues' , and it was my first locate on my first day there. Turned out to get turned over to the trouble team as unlocatable anyway, but there is no way i'd walk away without at least trying to get on it and run it . Being tagged as 'lazy' or 'weak' just hasnt been an issue for me. Never will.
    What exactly is a "sharpshooter"?

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Quote Originally Posted by 2RUDE View Post
    What exactly is a "sharpshooter"?
    A tunneling spade.

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Ahh, ok, Thanks... I thought it might of been one of those "spot welders" the gas co. uses to shoot wire onto steel pipe.

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    Default Re: While I'm at it ....

    Quote Originally Posted by Turk182 View Post
    A tunneling spade.
    What the hell is a tunneling spade? Damn yankees
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