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Thread: Let's Share Some Stories

  1. #1
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    Let's Share Some Stories

    All of us have some interesting stories that only those in our line of work care to hear. I'll start it off but want to hear yours.
    A lady in a facility I recently balanced had always been cold and was convinced that the HVAC redesign wouldn't work any better than the previous efforts to fix the building. After the redesign and before the balance work was started she literally cussed out everyone that came near her. If they left a speck of debris anywhere she raised hell. I was told to stay away from her and not talk to her. After balancing her area I monitored the controls and they were doing exactly what they were designed to do. Her room temperature was set at 68 F but was 78 F. The cooling was going full bore so she had to be running a space heater. She is the assistant director of this place and nobody was going to try to stop her.
    I emailed the receptionist and ask if the lady was always cold and she emailed back "YES". I cut her cooling airflow in half and reset her stat to 77 F. After leaving it like that for two days I went to visit her. She said for the last couple of days her room was for the first time comfortable and she couldn't have been nicer. She was thankful that she was no longer freezing.
    I told the powers that be it made no sense for the system to be cooling with her heating the room constantly with her heater. They finally agreed to leave her stat set at 77 F.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

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  3. #2
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    Deer hunting Wayne see you next week for story time amazed at no responses.. Everyone else deer hunting to?
    Honeywell you can buy better but you cant pay more

    I told my wife when i die to sell my fishing stuff for what its worth not what i told her i paid for it

  4. #3
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    Good luck crazy. I'm really looking forward to a lot of stories. It should be interesting.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

  5. #4
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    Sometimes I get a surprise. A sub called me to balance a large open office. Renewing their lease was depending on the system working better than it was. I don't want to start a war of the sexes but it was almost all women. Many of us know how hard it can be to satisfy many woman temperature wise. Some otherwise.
    The sub worked with me and the job was about 10 days. Everything was bad, wrong, busted, failed, dirty, disconnected, $crewed up.
    Got it all fixed and back together. I let the manager know we were done.
    I don't usually have complaints after the systems on line but this job just had so much broke. Two day later, like I usually do, I went back with clipboard in hand expecting a level of doom and asked the manager if there was a list of problems, complaints, unhappy folks, malcontents remembering this was a woman dominated office where, being an open office, they talk to each other.
    The manager "No, everything's fine." I quietly left wondering why I had been let off so easy when I expected at least another half day.
    Sometimes you win. So take your honey with a ladle and your vinegar with a teaspoon.

    This kinda proves that when women complain it's possible something is actually broke.
    So listen and let the first assumption be she's telling the truth. Proceed accordingly.
    Give me a relay with big enough contacts, and I'll run the world!

    You can be anything you want......As long as you don't suck at it.

    If a person wants to create a machine that will be more likely to fail...Make it complicated.

    USAF 98 Bomb Wing 1960-66 SMW Lu49

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  7. #5
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    The only problem I have had making the women happy is when management refuses to listen to them. I think I related this story before but here goes again.
    In a hospital one of the lady workers complained about air blowing on her from the diffuser above her desk. She was in a large open area and was only satisfied after I closed the balance damper. The report was noted accordingly. At the final meeting on site the engineer and facilities manager agreed the diffuser needed to be balanced to within design. I told the engineer I wouldn't touch it unless he went with me and he did. When we sat up the ladder she said "what the hell are you doing?". The engineer told her and she said it is not going to stay that way. We balanced it and as we were leaving a building maintenance guy was walking toward her area with a ladder. He went directly to her diffuser damper and closed it. The engineer didn't say a word but turned and walked off.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

  8. #6
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    I don't blame most complaints women make as being women's nature. They, at least in professional environments, are forced to dress in ways that make them uncomfortable.
    The shoes for example. Just try to imagine what high heals might be like let alone 6" spikes. Short dresses with bare legs. Light weight everything excepting snow bunnies.
    The office VAV system that shuts down and the air stratifies. All those little space heaters under the desks sucking up all the $$ the VA was supposed to save.
    If women were allowed to wear more adaptable clothes most complaints would disappear but the office wouldn't be as visually interesting.
    Give me a relay with big enough contacts, and I'll run the world!

    You can be anything you want......As long as you don't suck at it.

    If a person wants to create a machine that will be more likely to fail...Make it complicated.

    USAF 98 Bomb Wing 1960-66 SMW Lu49

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  10. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by hvacker View Post
    I don't blame most complaints women make as being women's nature. They, at least in professional environments, are forced to dress in ways that make them uncomfortable.
    The shoes for example. Just try to imagine what high heals might be like let alone 6" spikes. Short dresses with bare legs. Light weight everything excepting snow bunnies.
    You just described our summer uniforms!
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  12. #8
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    In my experience people don't usually complain when the system is working with the proper setpoints . Good story......Went to a GTE ( General Telephone ) job many years ago when all we had was beepers . The address was in the outskirts of Orlando . I drove up and down the street probably 10 times and double checked the address and it was just a vacant lot . I called the office and the put a call into the customer . I was waiting at a 7-11 and a guy in a GTE truck drove up . I told him I was looking for a small building that was a telephone switching center . He laughed and led me exactly where I was before . We parked on the side of the road and walked through some bushes . There was like an 8'x6' steel door in the ground, switching center was underground.

  13. #9
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    One quick one.....In my truck I always carried toilet paper and one of those old service phones that had the two wires with alligator clips on them . Every building had a phone room . Walk in , clip the leads on and you had an instant office .

  14. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradluke0 View Post
    One quick one.....In my truck I always carried toilet paper and one of those old service phones that had the two wires with alligator clips on them . Every building had a phone room . Walk in , clip the leads on and you had an instant office .
    I used to play a game. I had a lot of work that was secured and when I walked in all the computers would be shut down and rotating lights in the ceiling.
    So based on the book about the first computer virus ( the Worm mid 1980's) the hack was done through the boot like most were at that time but then the hack went past any protection by claiming file maintenance. He got right in.
    So I start to think a lot of receptionists might just let me go in. So tool bag on my shoulder and in I go. And many did. I wouldn't compromise a seriously secured site but a lesser one maybe, just to test their resolve.
    I think the reason I got by low level security is no one wanted to ask what I was doing because they might not understand the answer. Most don't want to feel inept. A tech just looks complicated.
    Give me a relay with big enough contacts, and I'll run the world!

    You can be anything you want......As long as you don't suck at it.

    If a person wants to create a machine that will be more likely to fail...Make it complicated.

    USAF 98 Bomb Wing 1960-66 SMW Lu49

  15. #11
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    I was assigned to do some design work at a missile assembly base. There were six of us doing different tasks. One guy walked a few steps down the road and the guard exploded. He called everyone out in the road and said if the guy had walked a few more steps down the road he would have shot him. We all had top secret clearances and he knew it.
    Part of my job was to determine if the guard shack had the proper heating and cooling. It was a hot day and the shack was really hot. My report said no alterations were needed.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

  16. #12
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    A bit off topic but here goes,
    In the late 90's we did controls on a TRW/Northrup Grumman facility. High security, Escort required, flashing lights, the works. I had to leave any removable media, phone, pager, everything at the guard desk and the guard had to "inspect" my laptop before I went in. We finish the project and a couple months late I get a service call for something or other. Go through the whole security routine and can't find anything wrong. Guy says "I'll call next time it happens". A week later I get the call. I know the issue has to be on the RTU so I just set up my 8" ladder below the exterior access ladder that the bottom of which is about 9' off the ground, get to the roof and find/fix the problem. I got to the Security desk and ask for the Guy an then tell him what I found/fixed. He asks "How in the He!! did you fix it, you haven't been in the building" ? I walk him outside, show him the Access ladder and he get's major pissed, but not at me. He thanks me and all is good or so I think. some time later I get another call for service. As I drive up to the building I see the ladder is gone and there is Constatine wire lining the entire roof line.

    I guess I found a security breach, go figure.
    If sense were so common everyone would have it !
    Never underestimate the power of human Stupidity !
    If folks took care of their cars like they do their HVAC Systems you'd see a lot more people walking !

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    Just remembered another one TAB related,
    We did a new Admin wing on a hospital. TAB guy was, lets just say, questionable at times. Building gets turned over in mid summer and there is only one major issue, large conference room is always warm (hot). Super checks the Balance report, says it's an "acceptable variance" and problem is dismissed.

    Winter comes along and the Conference room is cold (< 60 degrees) all the time and the CFO's office is about the same. Maint. Supervisor corners me and asks for help. I am not a TAB guy but I did have a velometer. I start checking stuff and there is minimal air coming out of the main branch to the Conference room. The VAV box is 16" round and I can't read more than about 100FPM. Long story short, after taking lots of duct apart we find the construction plastic still on the branch takeoff ! TAB report said there was 94% of design (I think it was something like 1400 cfm). Yea, right. Busted !

    CFO's office has a radiant panel as well as HW Reheat on the VAV box. Again, TAB report says everything is within spec's. Radiant panel is luke warm with 180 degree HWS and I'm getting no Temp rise across the HW coil. Both are fed from the same pipe . We find a closed ball valve with no handle on that circuit. One again, Busted !

    It sucks when the Controls Guy finds the balances screw up's. Especially when I'm the guy.
    If sense were so common everyone would have it !
    Never underestimate the power of human Stupidity !
    If folks took care of their cars like they do their HVAC Systems you'd see a lot more people walking !

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  19. #14
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    I have one similar Cagey57. I was called to trouble shoot comfort problems in a building wing that was new and had been balanced. When I found out in had been recently balanced I told them call the guy back. They said we want a second opinion. I couldn't find airflow any where and no static pressure. Went to the new take off the main duct and found that the hole in the main duct sheet metal had not be cut.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

  20. #15
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    ^^That is a bit of a hindrance to airflow....haha. I was working in a JC Penny store horsing around a 14' wooden ladder . The store was almost ready to open . I was moving the ladder and got a bit off balance and knocked one of the fire sprinkler heads off . A hell of a lot of water comes out of those things . I didn't know what to do and I was running around like an idiot . One of the other contractors had a broom and he broke the wooden handle in half and stuck it in the sprinkler . Sprayed down half the men's department .

  21. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradluke0 View Post
    ^^That is a bit of a hindrance to airflow....haha. I was working in a JC Penny store horsing around a 14' wooden ladder . The store was almost ready to open . I was moving the ladder and got a bit off balance and knocked one of the fire sprinkler heads off . A hell of a lot of water comes out of those things . I didn't know what to do and I was running around like an idiot . One of the other contractors had a broom and he broke the wooden handle in half and stuck it in the sprinkler . Sprayed down half the men's department .
    I've only seen that happen twice. The worse was a filled system. The water that came out after laying in the pipes for 20 years was gawd awful stinky thick muddy dark brown crap. Decomposed glycol probably. Aldehydes, esters, complex molecules. It made me believe in non-filled systems. I don't remember the correct name for the 2 types right now but y'all know the types.
    Give me a relay with big enough contacts, and I'll run the world!

    You can be anything you want......As long as you don't suck at it.

    If a person wants to create a machine that will be more likely to fail...Make it complicated.

    USAF 98 Bomb Wing 1960-66 SMW Lu49

  22. #17
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    I was doing water balance in a government facility. When I took the Pete's plug cap off one of the circuit setters water came pouring out. There was no guts in it. I got the cap on and stopped the water and that's when the fun started. They had to do an incident report and had to know all the details. There were no details except the valve was not right from the factory.

    hvacker the only name I have for the water you described is MUCK.
    No man can be both ignorant and free.
    Thomas Jefferson

  23. #18
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    I unscrewed the cap off a pete's plug once and the whole thing unscrewed from the pipe . I wasn't paying attention at the time but I can say it never happened again .

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    I have so many stories its nuts . Here's another …...We were working down in Homestead , FL on a joint military listening / planning center . We had to work nights as there was just too much action in there during the day . We had an escort and he had to go in front of us and "sanitize" ( hide papers in plain site and cover the maps with lights flashing on the walls ) each room before we could go in . Somehow our escort wandered off and we were left alone . We saw a doorway with a bunch of lights flashing so we looked in . Two Marines came up and detained us . After we were questioned for an hour or so about what we saw ( nothing really , it happened so fast ) they sent us home for the night . Our escort got in trouble and he never escorted us again . Ok , one more quickie ……..I was working on a Saturday and the control guy and the sheet metal guy didn't show up . I went to leave about 11 and my truck wouldn't start . The GC ( I think ) pulled the cable off my battery so I couldn't leave . I just put it back on and went home .

  25. #20
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    I have so many stories its nuts . Here's another ...We were working down in Homestead , FL on a joint military listening / planning center . We had to work nights as there was just too much action in there during the day . We had an escort and he had to go in front of us and "sanitize" ( hide papers in plain site and cover the maps with lights flashing on the walls ) each room before we could go in . Somehow our escort wandered off and we were left alone . We saw a doorway with a bunch of lights flashing so we looked in . Two Marines came up and detained us . After we were questioned for an hour or so about what we saw ( nothing really , it happened so fast ) they sent us home for the night . Our escort got in trouble and he never escorted us again . Ok , one more quickie ..I was working on a Saturday and the control guy and the sheet metal guy didn't show up . I went to leave about 11 and my truck wouldn't start . The GC ( I think ) pulled the cable off my battery so I couldn't leave . I just put it back on and went home .

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