[Amps] Water and Electricity

Mark - N5OT r-emails at n5ot.com
Sun Feb 14 04:38:03 EST 2021

Thank you, Kurt.  Brilliant advice/great reminder about dust.  Much 

I grew up on rumors about how the Henry Radio repair shop would take a 
Collins S-Line in for repair, throw it in the bathtub, and take a hose 
to it.  It always amazes me how "we as a society" somehow automatically 
assume water is bad near "electricity" without knowing more of the details.

Maybe it comes from that movie they showed us in 4th grade where that 
lady at the county fair tried to change a light bulb while standing in 
water.  Lots of sparks and screaming.  It gave me nightmares but I got 
over them.  She should probably not have stuck her fingers into the 
socket without turning it off first. But that might have been an issue 
even if she wasn't standing in water.

Still trying to understand the sparks.

Mark N5OT

On 2/12/2021 6:40 PM, KD7JYK DM09 wrote:
> "Just sitting there, it started making an arcing noise (sort of) and 
> showed plate current jumping around. "
> New here, so mostly lurking, but this brought back memories of many 
> issues over the years.  Have you checked for dust?  I've run into this 
> many times, especially in TV's, and video displays, my experience with 
> tube amps is limited, although I have a few. Hyper-fine dust sticking 
> to things, and causing tracking, and eventually arcing.  I took apart 
> a hallicrafters TV to show to a friend (assuming the issue would 
> exist), and there it was around the high voltage rectifier tube, fine 
> dust, with some blackened areas due to corona.
> One of the very first things I do when inspecting, is gently blow out, 
> or vacuum any dust, and if possible, wash parts, boards, frames, 
> cases, connectors, et cetera before applying power, especially with 
> high voltage circuits.
> Depending on the component, I use 91% rubbing alcohol, or QD Electric 
> Contact Cleaner, then let dry very thoroughly.  Sometimes I use a 
> small, soft nylon bristled brush to scrub away really tenacious crud.
> Kurt
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