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Thread: Couplers

  1. #1
    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Couplers

    We have taken on a new Electric contract and now need 10" Couplers in order to locate some of our primaries coming off poles and going underground.
    The problem is that due to the cost, $800, the co. will not purchase over 1 Coupler per group.

    My question is, has anyone ever made a Coupler? I have tried wrapping the leads several different ways, but never have had that work. I would appreciate any ideas. By the way, I use an RD 400 with the old 1 watt transmitter.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Dave72's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    Im not sure if the '400' has an inductive mode ? What about some kind of strap/etc (proper length bungie cords ?) to strap the transmitter itself to the pole, oriented up/down of course. Should field enough to get some going down the line. The higher up the pole the better (to avoid accidentally soaking anything else in the ground near the pole butt).

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  3. #3
    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    I've wondered if wrapping leads around a cable would work as a inductor clamp. I don't think the leads are long enough. You would probably need hundreds of windings to get the power you need.

    On another note. I can now by a DVD player for 30 bucks. Why would a clamp cost $800? All they are is plastic and copper windings. There are no circuits in them as far as I know.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Senior Member yahoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    spray pm me i have an old one (not a 10inch) that you can rig up some kind of way but you will need a plug that is compatible w/ your transmitter
    wise men talk because they have something to say and fools because they have to say something....plato

  5. #5
    Senior Member Hurricane9's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    Dumb question time, but if it's coming down a pole, can't you go to the out end and bring it back? Sooner or later it has to reach a transformer, switch fuse, something that you can get on to. I know not all of them do, but most will go to an out end. I guess before I would try a coupler that big, I would induce on it. I would think a pole would ground most of the signal from a coupler, especially if there is more than power coming down it.

  6. #6
    Member Throttle jockey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    I had a two lineman, from two diff. comp. show me to hook up on the copper ground that is on the pole anytime it goes to U/G. And it does work at least in my area.

    I also use that method when locating phone when the ground is frozen out in the country. Or when I can't get a ground rod in because the weeds are to tall.

    Of course being aware of what is around so no bleed over, carry over.

  7. #7
    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    I had a situation where there was a Handhole between my riser and myTransformer - signal was good between transformer and Handhole but would not go past that point. I then tried connecting to ground wire coming down the pole - no signal. Tried inducing - no luck. The only thing that worked was the Coupler.
    Yahoo, thanks anyway but I have a 6" coupler but need the 10" for the larger conduit I run into.

    I did notice that my 6" coupler when in the working position , actually makes a complete electrical loop a full 360 degrees. I tried using a piece of primary wire, about 3/8 in in diameter but I got nothing.
    I might not be as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was !


    It's better to be Pissed Off than Pissed On or Stood On and Pissed Off Of !


    The views expressed on this website/blog are mine alone and do not reflect the views of my employer. or my wife , if that matters.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Dave72's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    hmm... spray made me think of this..

    how about that loop of primary.. attach the ends to make a complete circle, then clamp over it. The transmitter signal should fire thru it, and it should in-turn induce a field in its own center.

    ?

    edit: maybe solid #6 would be better.. perhaps find some at a fire site from an old house ?

    (note: im not suggesting to start a fire, then take the wire.. just in case some legal ppl are reading me wrong here.. lol)
    Last edited by Dave72; December 25th, 2008 at 11:08 PM.
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Couplers

    Try contacting Adam at Quantex Industries. This is where I send in my equipment to be repaired. I have ordered multiple brands and sizes of ring clamps from them as well. Some are brand new and some refurbished. Either way, I have always received quality work and products from these guys. The refurbished stuff is significantly cheaper.

    3100 Medlock Bridge Rd
    Suite 410
    Norcross, Georgia 30071
    (770 416-0301

  10. #10
    Senior Member AULupstate's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    Spray,
    If the company is only going to purchase 1 coupler per group why do you care how much it costs??? I would think the fact they aren't buying and issueing the necassary equipment to fullfill their contractual obligations means that contract is already in jeopardy of being lost? You buy that $800 dollar accessory and YOU'RE out $800 if the company doesn't have their act together enough to buy the right equipment and looses that contract because of it. Not to mention that gives you a pretty valid reason why NOT to locate that particular utility, YOU DON'T HAVE THE RIGHT EQUIPMENT TO LOCATE IT ACCURATELY!!!!! Maybe I'm looking at it from a negative side but WHY SHOULD YOU have to buy the equipment to do THEIR JOB??????

  11. #11
    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    AUL, you hit the nail on the head. I wastold when we got the contract an new budget was hastily prepared. Well, like other things in this company, someone (who probably never actually located b/4) underestimated practically everything we needed - people, equipment and supplies. Hell, they even had to stop changing the decals on the CLS trucks we got in from Fl. over to SM&P. Now they just add SM&P plus a USIC logo to the existing decals.
    However, I'm not spending $100 out of own pocket, much less $800. That's why I'm attempting to come up with a "homemade" coupler of some type. My boss is supposed to find me an old one that I can tear apart. I also have a friend that works for Texas Instruments that might be able to explain how a coupler actually sets up the 'field' that induces onto cables.
    I'm not in a big rush but I would really get a kick out of coming up with something cheap. I agree with Steve, there's no way the couplers should cost $800.
    I might not be as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was !


    It's better to be Pissed Off than Pissed On or Stood On and Pissed Off Of !


    The views expressed on this website/blog are mine alone and do not reflect the views of my employer. or my wife , if that matters.

  12. #12
    Senior Member big boots mcghee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    Quote Originally Posted by Throttle jockey View Post
    I had a two lineman, from two diff. comp. show me to hook up on the copper ground that is on the pole anytime it goes to U/G. And it does work at least in my area.
    When I was originally trained years ago this was the preferred method for locating electric primaries coming down poles. I still use this method quite often as it has proven very useful, though nowadays my employer and the electric company try to prevent us from doing it this way.

    I'd just pop open a smaller ring clamp to see how everything lays out. Then I'd recreate it on a bigger scale so as to fit around a pole. If that didn't work I'm trying ebay or craigslist, but then again that's only if I'm willing to shell out my own $$ to make up for my employer's shortcomings.
    My boots may be red but I'm no clown.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Couplers

    I believe that I was getting used couplers from the company mentioned above for something like $150.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Hurricane9's Avatar
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    Default Re: Couplers

    send me a few pictures of the poles you are trying to locate the primaries coming down and I can probable give you some better suggestions than a coupler.

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