Once Works Well was pure technology. Now it seeks merely to divert.
Pansy subjects - Verse! Opera! Domestic trivia! - are now commonplace.
The 300-word limit for posts is retained. The ego is enlarged

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Soldering can make you happier

If a little learning is dangerous, so’s a lot. Especially with electricity. Electrical hyper-sensitivity leads me to worry about the three-pin plug that’s warm when it shouldn’t be and about a woman I know with a physics degree who yanks on the flex of her electric kettle to pull out the plug.

And about my dear late father-in-law who I found poking into the central heating timer with a screwdriver. “It’s all right,” he said, “it works on gas.”

Electricity’s ability to destroy is awesome. Unions between cables and terminals are potential weak points and in some cases the risk can be reduced by soldering rather than just wrapping.

Soldering is fun. Roughen the terminal and the cable end with emery paper, coat each separately with molten solder, wind the cable round the terminal, and apply heat. Two becomes one almost immediately and conductivity is perfect. No worries about the union slackening through vibration. The RAF taught me to solder for free. I am at least grateful to them (it?) for that.

2 comments:

marja-leena said...

For someone as hands-on as I am, anything to do with electricity is something I've always left up to my husband, thankfully.

Barrett Bonden said...

You're in the majority, of course. Many people invest electricity with a sort of invisible malice and shy away from it. One house I lived in had original 1930s wiring, a genuine fire hazard. Impoverishment forced me to re-wire it myself. I discovered that the "electrical" side of the job paled into nothing compared with the carpentry and similar DIY work. It is a subject I intend to cover in the blog.