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  1. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Louisburg Kansas
    Posts
    4,115
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    Thread Starter
    A story I would like to share about a lady supervisor at a government building. I fell in love with her because she was really smart and didn't put up with BS from anyone. She was also beautiful but that didn't help or hinder her. They had paid for the design and modification of several multi fan penthouses because the fans had never tracked each other. The modifications didn't solve the problem and she ask the area supervisor who to get a second opinion from.
    I was ask to balance the fans but this cagey lady instructed everyone to not even tell me there was a problem. The first thing I did was look at the controls program and the fan current draw. It was obvious the fans weren't tracking each other in any of the pent houses so I went to the roof to find out why. It turned out the fans had inlet vanes all of which were being controlled by a single pneumatic controller. The sloppy mechanical linkage couldn't possibly get the fans to track. The fans had good quality flow grids on each inlet. My solution was to make the fans track each other using velocity pressure.
    I was told the engineer they used was highly sought after in the area and basically they trusted him not me. I responded if you want the damn things to work do what I'm telling you otherwise listen to him but I'm going home.
    The lady supervisor was impressed that I found the problem so quick not even being told there was a problem and instructed them to do one pent house the way I told them. It worked perfectly and the lady wanted me to come back and test that set of fans. I agreed and as before ask her to reserve me a spot in their guarded parking lot.
    I drove to the building and the guard wouldn't let me in the parking lot. I went around to the front (main) parking lot and ask the guard to call the lady in charge of the building but she called the head of security instead. He came out and I ask him to call her but instead he threatened to put me in handcuffs if I didn't leave. As luck would have it the head dog lady had looked out her window and saw there was a problem and called the head of security. He handed me the phone and she told me to go back to the back parking lot. I told her I had been there and the guard wouldn't let me in. She said go back and I guaranty you he will let you in. You have two spots reserved if you need them. I went back to the lot and the A-hole guard would have parked the van for me if I had ask him.
    She had ask me to come to her office first so we could talk and I did so. She told me you will never have that kind of problem again. You have good ideas and your solution to our problem appears to be working but I want you to verify everything is as it should be before we go any further with the work. The fans were tracking on the money and I let her know that.
    As previously said this lady didn't put up with anything but the way things should be and was smart enough to see the difference between BS and fact.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

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  3. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    2,158
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    I was working at a defense contractor building until late one night. Apparently I left my lights on when I arrived in the day time. By now the battery was dead. I walked back into the front desk and asked the security guard if he could give me jump start - I had jumper cables. He said no he had a new car and would not take a chance on messing something up. I notice he kept looking down at a video monitor while we were talking. I asked him again if he would give me a jump start. He said no again. I leaned across the desk so I could see the video screen. I looked at the video screen. I looked up at him. I looked down at the video screen and I looked up at him. I asked one more time if he would give me a jump start and he said "Let me get my keys".

    There was an adult video drive in theater adjacent to the facility. He had pointed the camera toward the screen and was watching the movie on the security camera. I let him know I caught him by looking at the video, then him, then the video. I didn't say I would report him but he decided to not chance it.
    If "I have always done it this way" is a good reason to do it again, how many times do I have to do something wrong - before it becomes right?

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  5. #29
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Several Miles from Sane
    Posts
    1,806
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    About 14 years ago we did the controls on a new Police Station. It had massive OSA Requirements so every VAV box had a Hot Water Reheat coil. Balancer had verified all the Coil and Air flows and set the K-Factors.
    The day before the Commissioning Agent (CxA) was scheduled I was doing Operational and Point to Point Check out. I was checking the Reheats and Heating Max flows and every box was discharging 140-150 degree temps. I had increased the Max Heat flow setpoint up to the Box Max CFM and was still getting DA-Temp over 130 degrees. WTF ? The CxA shows up the next day and I tell him the problem. We go through all the valve spec’s and sizing and he agrees that we had the correct valves per schedule. I always created my own “Box Schedule” with Sizes, Min/Max CFM’s, Valve Flows and other info. The CxA, who happened to work for the same consulting firm that did the design, asked for my Box Schedule.

    We rescheduled for the following day. CxA show up the next day and starts asking me if I can limit the stroke of all the valves. I tell him that I can and ask why as well as WHO is going to pay for it ? He hems and haws for a while and finally says “We will pay for your time” and here’s why; the engineer that spec’d the valves had over sized all of them by 100%. He had taken my 8-1/2 x 11 Box Schedule and expanded it to 20x24 with all of the design calculations showing the mistake’s. I had to change the Signal to every Reheat valve (something like 60 of them) from 0-10VDC to 0-4VDC. Ever since that job I always remember the quote from Ronald Reagan “Trust but verify” !
    If sense were so common everyone would have it !
    Stupid should Hurt !
    If people took care of their cars like they do their HVAC Systems you'd see a lot more people walking
    !

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