Can you spot the moron? WEDM operation isues...
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    Default Can you spot the moron? WEDM operation isues...

    So I'm in the middle of making some tooling and have been kind of hurrying things along, maybe not taking
    enough care as I should be since I'm trying to just knock it out due to being very busy at the moment.

    As evidence of this hurriedness, I did not plan locating a cut in some stock well enough and because of this the
    stock collapsed and caused a pinched and then broken wire. Not a huge deal, as it is simple enough to back out and restart...

    So, being very close to the edge of the stock, I decided to thread the wire by hand and then fire up the machine.
    So I pushed the lower cup down and twisted it 90° to lock it there, and then threaded the wire. Put all the guards back, and fired her up.

    Machine takes off and is burning really nicely, and a little "hot" ( being a little over 1" thick Stainless and wanting to get through the roughing pass fairly quickly ).

    The machine/wire gets to the point where it pinched and broke earlier and I notice that I have ZERO pressure on the lower head's water jet.
    That's not good... That's when it dawns on me that I forgot to release and raise the lower cup after threading the wire. [email protected]!

    Being in a hurry, and leaving my brain completely in neutral, I don't want to stop the burn, so I remove all the guards and the front lower water
    skirt ( while the water is running ) and reach in WITH BOTH ARMS and grab the lower head with both hands to twist the cup and get it to release and pop up.

    ZZZZZzzzzZZZZZzzzzzZZZZZzzzzzzZZZZZzzzTTTTTTTTTTT !!!!!!!!!

    Owwwwww....

    F'n moron. That really hurt.

    I laughed for 20 minutes straight simply for being such an idiot.
    My only regret is that no one was filming it because I'd win big money if they had.

    Be careful out there...

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    my sort of recent high voltage safety training warns some people get electrocuted, And if they walk away tehy don't think it was very serious, just hurt, but then they feel kinda tired... then they go sit down, might take a rest, or have a smoke..... few minutes they fall asleep, and just die. Sometimes several hours later. One guy drove home, ate, told his wife he was really tired and was going to go to bed early. she came in later he was dead.

    You can get your heart shocked into an inneffective rythym, and your still walking around for a bit untill your tired.... because it isnt mooving enough blood to support your body properly, but just enough to get you along barely.

    all I'm saying is, If you get zapped, Have somebody watch you very closely for a long time. or get to a hospital, or both.. dont go take a nap.

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    Might be lucky that you didn't reach in with one hand while bracing the other against the cabinet

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    We had a few wires hanging down for years at about the center of a drill sharpening bench that held a number of drill sharpening machines. After a time the tape fell off and the wires un-noticed were hanging bare. One day as we were dismantling the drill sharpening area we moved the bench to allow a lamp fixture to bump the exposed wires. Pow-pow went the noise of hot 220 or 440-30 amp being grounded to the light fixture.

    Buck

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    This probably goes as common advice, and Mark kinda got there, but in any case:

    "When working around exposed live voltage, one hand stays in its pocket until the other is clear of the hazard"

    The EDM is probably one of the better things you could be zapped by: lotta hurt, good lesson. Be glad it wasn't an exposed 3 phase with a ton of amperage behind it, or that you didn't have a better ground path. Good that your story turned out as it did; it's a reminder that sharp spinning objects aren't the only hazard in the business, especially for those who work on their own equipment.

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    Might be lucky that you didn't reach in with one hand while bracing the other against the cabinet
    I always grab my balls with the left hand, when doing obviously stupid things.

    Nick

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    Quote Originally Posted by dsergison View Post
    ... If you get zapped, Have somebody watch you very closely for a long time. or get to a hospital, or both.. dont go take a nap.
    Dan - for all the useless information floating banging around with the detritus in my cranium you'd think I would have heard of this but I have not. Thanks for posting it. I'll tuck that away for almost certain future use. As an aside - I was completely and uncontrollably AWAKE for many, many hours after that. No way I was able to sleep for a long time after. Ha!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rand View Post
    Might be lucky that you didn't reach in with one hand while bracing the other against the cabinet
    Mark - odds are that it's 6 of one, half dozen of the other. The lower ( and upper ) head ( and wire ) are one side of the power. The table is the other. When I reached under the table, my forearms were in contact with the lower part of the table. That's why I got it so well when I grabbed the lower head. One can actually grab the wire while it's running and not suffer any, as long as you're not touching anything else...

    Quote Originally Posted by cesium View Post
    ... it's a reminder that sharp spinning objects aren't the only hazard in the business, especially for those who work on their own equipment.
    Cesium - You got it. What makes this one particularly embarrassing and poignant is that I know SO VERY much better, yet did it anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Mueller View Post
    I always grab my balls with the left hand, when doing obviously stupid things. Nick
    Nick - It isn't oft that I'm speechless. Of course, this time it's only because I'm laughing so hard!!! Are we related?

    I can be my own worst enemy in the shop... Here - hold my beer and watch this...

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    OWWWW; those gotta hurt, especially when you're roughing.
    No wonder all us wire EDM guys are all a bit weird; all that current rattling around our nogs has scrambled our brains.
    I have to say though; I haven't done that one yet...I'm sure my time will come.
    I did blow up a wheel on the surface grinder today; does that count?
    Some days ya just gotta make scrap; if ya don't yer not workin' hard enough.
    Cheers

    Marcus
    Implant Mechanix – Design & Innovation - home
    Vancouver Wire EDM -- Wire EDM Machining

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    I can be my own worst enemy in the shop... Here - hold my beer and watch this...
    We always do stupid things from time to time. But what I liked about your story was, that you laughed about yourself that much afterwards.
    I'm doing that too.

    But the good thing about that is: If you can laugh about your stupidity, your are not stupid.


    Nick

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    I can be my own worst enemy in the shop... Here - hold my beer and watch this...
    Pffft. Wire EDMs are just tingly. I want to see video of you grabbing a sinker EDM electrode.

    I touched the ram of our old Mits once by accident when it was burning some small dia holes at low power. The guy training me laughed his ass off because I looked like this for the next 30 minutes. --->>

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    Sounds like me . . .did not want the 'slug' to just fall off the end of the workpiece so decided to hold onto it with my hand. . .worked fine until the part cut off . . . @3!!$

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    Well, I routinely drill wireholes in some odd shape impossible to clamp parts.
    So, instead of coming up with an impossible clamp, I just use my hands to push the part onto the fixture for the 20-30 seconds or so while the drill is doing it's job.

    Unfortunately tough, being the retarded fallible human I am, my mind sometimes wonders off to never-never land and my hands gets the urge to
    not just push the part onto the fixture with one finger but rather clamp it like a flexible Wisegrip.

    Let me assure you, there is nothing Wise about that dumb move!

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    Quote Originally Posted by implmex View Post
    OWWWW; those gotta hurt, especially when you're roughing.
    No wonder all us wire EDM guys are all a bit weird; all that current rattling around our nogs has scrambled our brains.
    I have to say though; I haven't done that one yet...I'm sure my time will come.
    I did blow up a wheel on the surface grinder today; does that count?
    Some days ya just gotta make scrap; if ya don't yer not workin' hard enough.
    Cheers Marcus
    Marcus - Ha! Yeah, I think it's the fact that I was roughing "hot" and that I grabbed on with both hands that did it. I've gotten bit before, but this one REALLY got me. It wasn't as much the actual voltage or amperage per se', as much as it was the involuntary shaking. That's what really hurt.

    And yes, blowin' up wheels is fun, too. Last time that happened to me was on a 12" wheel. You couldn't have shoved a red hot pin up my ass with a 10 pound sledge hammer at that moment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Mueller View Post
    We always do stupid things from time to time. But what I liked about your story was, that you laughed about yourself that much afterwards.
    I'm doing that too. But the good thing about that is: If you can laugh about your stupidity, your are not stupid. Nick
    Nick - Focusing on Prototyping Surgical/Medical instruments and Gears, about half the time I am working on something that really stretches my mind and problem solving skills ( because I'm just not that smart ), so I'm often really "focused" ( read as - OCD ). Some times I get to make some really, really neat stuff. All in all, I try not to take myself too seriously, though. I can safely say it's not that hard to accomplish... I can be a complete fsck'n idiot fairly often. Just ask my wife.

    Quote Originally Posted by Philabuster View Post
    Pffft. Wire EDMs are just tingly. I want to see video of you grabbing a sinker EDM electrode. I touched the ram of our old Mits once by accident when it was burning some small dia holes at low power. The guy training me laughed his ass off because I looked like this for the next 30 minutes. --->>
    Philabuster - I've done both. To be honest, the REDM was more of a zap that made you let go IMMEDIATELY and stung for a brief bit. I think this one hurt more because of the fact that I was actually grabbing something with purpose.

    I really do wish there had been video of that, though. I KNOW I would win any of those video competitions.

    Ah, well... back to work... Be careful, Boys.

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    Can you spot the moron? WEDM operation isues...
    I had to laugh at the title of the thread, only because of what my first machine shop supervisor used to say... "You will see a moron every time you look around. If you can't spot the moron, then you're the moron."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zahnrad Kopf View Post
    So I'm in the middle of making some tooling and have been kind of hurrying things along, maybe not taking
    enough care as I should be since I'm trying to just knock it out due to being very busy at the moment.

    As evidence of this hurriedness, I did not plan locating a cut in some stock well enough and because of this the
    stock collapsed and caused a pinched and then broken wire. Not a huge deal, as it is simple enough to back out and restart...

    So, being very close to the edge of the stock, I decided to thread the wire by hand and then fire up the machine.
    So I pushed the lower cup down and twisted it 90° to lock it there, and then threaded the wire. Put all the guards back, and fired her up.

    Machine takes off and is burning really nicely, and a little "hot" ( being a little over 1" thick Stainless and wanting to get through the roughing pass fairly quickly ).

    The machine/wire gets to the point where it pinched and broke earlier and I notice that I have ZERO pressure on the lower head's water jet.
    That's not good... That's when it dawns on me that I forgot to release and raise the lower cup after threading the wire. [email protected]!

    Being in a hurry, and leaving my brain completely in neutral, I don't want to stop the burn, so I remove all the guards and the front lower water
    skirt ( while the water is running ) and reach in WITH BOTH ARMS and grab the lower head with both hands to twist the cup and get it to release and pop up.

    ZZZZZzzzzZZZZZzzzzzZZZZZzzzzzzZZZZZzzzTTTTTTTTTTT !!!!!!!!!

    Owwwwww....

    F'n moron. That really hurt.

    I laughed for 20 minutes straight simply for being such an idiot.
    My only regret is that no one was filming it because I'd win big money if they had.

    Be careful out there...
    I recommend you see a urologist..........you should have pissed your pants.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EDM JOE View Post
    I had to laugh at the title of the thread, only because of what my first machine shop supervisor used to say... "You will see a moron every time you look around. If you can't spot the moron, then you're the moron."
    Dammit... I'm the only one in here, so I don't see any other... < sigh >

    Quote Originally Posted by toolsteel View Post
    I recommend you see a urologist..........you should have pissed your pants.
    Ha! I blamed it on the water spray from the machine.

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    Default Lessons from Mr. Sparky

    This is a very fun thread and yeah, ZK, I can spot a moron… every time I look in the mirror.

    Thanks for making me and others smile as all of us who will admit it, can recall a similar experience when “Mr. Sparky” reminded us to be more careful. My experience, like yours, is much more amusing years-later in the telling, but the following "lesson" I learned is the worst (and last) of my EDM hair-curlings, way back when I thought I knew it all. And yeah... having been bitten by both, WEDM’s are merely "tingly", compared to the slightest jolt from a sinker. Here's my worst.

    A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, I was a working-boss running a tool room with 10 toolmakers and 5 apprentices. Besides ram-rodding the shop, I was making my own electrodes and operating 1 Agemaspark, 2 El-Tee’s and one of the first CNC sinkers available. It was the CNC that I had interrupted during a rough cut to take a quick reference measurement – pausing, but not stopping. Like all of the other “World’s Greatest EDM Operators”, I would casually ignore common-sense shop rules when in a hurry. In this case, I foolishly attempted to ID-measure the cavity opening and in doing so, I touched the still-hot electrode with one of the caliper blades.

    Trust me… I have personally experienced what Kryptonite does to Superman! I don’t remember my amperage settings (Actually, I’m lucky I can remember anything), but I can only describe my millisecond reminder as something very big and strong, causing every muscle in my body to extend outward like a bursting firework. This caused me to slam my right elbow into the inside edge of the tank, striking my “funny-bone” (it wasn’t funny). Dazed by the combined, "Message from God", and in confused weak-kneed pain after never-before, elbow-chopping a fixed, firm, metal object at light speed, I was totally stunned and I staggered around dazed and in pain for several minutes while the rest of the shop watched in curious fascination as their boss jerkily wobbled around in front of the machine like a drunk who just stepped on a rake!

    Making this story more embarrassing, I learned that immediately after that incident, I had been given the nick-name of "Roxanne". When I inquired why, I was told that when I broke into my funky-chicken dance, it was ironically timed to the beat of the song that happened to be on the shop radio at the time -- Roxanne. The guys mistakenly thought the boss got carried away and was rocking-out to the music! They had no idea that I had just experienced a 30A kiss from “Mr. Sparky”, but "Roxanne?" Really guys?

    I collapsed into a chair for about 10 minutes trying to recall what my name was and why I was in this strange building full of machines and people laughing at me and most of all, why does my arm hurt so much?

    The only good part of my “Mr. Sparky” lesson was, I didn't have to show anyone what else happened. While in the grip of my right hand when my arm shot into the work tank, I had ripped the sliding-part of the caliper completely from the frame, shearing off the two screws holding the end-stop. I found this part of my calipers all the way in the left-rear of the tank after ricocheting there by an unseen bank-shot. Adding insult to injury (literally) was finding the inside-nib of the calipers was reduced to a #6-sized glob of BB-shot welded where the once-sharp point had been. Do not try this at home.

    It's all funny now, but bend your right arm and cup the end of your right elbow in your left hand. That was the size of the blue-green bruise that formed almost immediately and gradually spread even farther up and down my arm and remained in various shades of blue, green and yellow for almost two weeks. My elbow burned red hot for hours and I couldn’t move my right arm for the rest of the day. Too young and tough to even consider a check-up, especially with my entire shop watching, I butched-up and McGyver’ed a temporary sling out of several apron-ties and finished the shift amid the annoying-but-deserved sniggers and wisecracks from my gloating crew.

    Sorry for running so long, but at the same time, thanks for sharing your story and drawing me into revealing a bit of myself, earning the fully-expected, but sympathetic laughter from my EDM friends here, and for reinforcing my own sense-of-humility.

    On the subject of humility, I will lead by example and will sign off as,

    Bud Guitrau, aka “Roxanne”

    P.S. Ok… who’ll tell the next moron story? This thread is great!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bud Guitrau View Post
    ... Like all of the other “World’s Greatest EDM Operators”, I would casually ignore common-sense shop rules ...
    Right there... That's right about the point where it started going South...

    Thanks for the recollections. Priceless stuff, there. I was laughing at your recount almost as hard as I laughed at myself. I'm of the school of thought that we shouldn't take ourselves too seriously. As an old Army buddy used to say, "I'm here for a good time; Not a long time." If someone else can learn from my mistakes, all the better. Bud, there's a PM heading your way. Have a quick question about your book.

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    Been zapped a couple times on a Charmilles sinker. Good solid grip on the electrode to remove it from the magnetic chuck, and hitting the wrong green button. Forearm feels like it's swollen up like Popeye's for a couple minutes.

    Got bit by a wire machine once too. I think fiddling around trying to untangle a mess at the end of the extraction belt. Figured I was safe, since touching the wire between the guides was never an issue. Still don't know why that happened.


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