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That's well put. I've always used the analogy of water in a pipe, which I can understand intuitively. But when trying to use the analogy with others, I find that a lot of people, even a lot of engineers, don't have an intuitive understanding of electricity in a circuit or water in a pipe either.
 

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That's always the analogy I've used too Andy. Water is like the amp and the pipe pressure is like the voltage and pipe size and elbows and changes in diameter is like the ohm. There are a few correlations to it such as adding a wire to a circuit is like adding a tee to a water line and going up a wire size or pipe size makes it flow easier.

The problem with trying to explain lots of things I've noticed has nothing to do with how simple it is. It has to do with how complex the person you are explaining it to thinks the problem is. The more complex they think it is, the less likely they are to understand your explanation.
 

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That's always the analogy I've used too Andy. Water is like the amp and the pipe pressure is like the voltage and pipe size and elbows and changes in diameter is like the ohm. There are a few correlations to it such as adding a wire to a circuit is like adding a tee to a water line and going up a wire size or pipe size makes it flow easier.

The problem with trying to explain lots of things I've noticed has nothing to do with how simple it is. It has to do with how complex the person you are explaining it to thinks the problem is. The more complex they think it is, the less likely they are to understand your explanation.
Your analogy works for airflow in Dust Collection too, Chuck.
Herb
 

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I have always had trouble with electricity. Even spending 33 years working in operations at a chemical plant. The electrical part was difficult to understand, until the lights went out!

Piping and flows were no problem. If need be, I could always follow the piping to see where it started and where it ended, but not the electrical part. Mostly I was happy when the emergency generator started during the monthly test.
 

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Corona discharge?[/QUOT
When I lived next to the power line right of way, You could stand under the power lines and hold a florescent tube overhead and it would light up.

Herb
Just beyond our back property line there are those high voltage power lines. And, what you say is true. We tried it. My BIL was a big gear electrician before he retired and moved to the ranch next to ours. He toyed with the idea of setting some sort of device under them and getting free power. He never did it. Couldn't figure out how to hide it.>:)
 

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A college professor of mine had worked with hydro. He told us that cows near hydro towers always stand with their side toward the towers. Standing facing or facing away causes a greater voltage difference between their legs which would be uncomfortable.
 

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Paul:

Appreciate the note on the corona discharge. Forgot about that one.
I took electronics in school. When soldering the high voltage on old style TVs if you left a 'point' in the joint, it could 'leak'. A rounded joint was necessary. You could hear a really bad one fizz.
 

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Just beyond our back property line there are those high voltage power lines. And, what you say is true. We tried it. My BIL was a big gear electrician before he retired and moved to the ranch next to ours. He toyed with the idea of setting some sort of device under them and getting free power. He never did it. Couldn't figure out how to hide it.>:)
I heard of a guy somewhere here in BC that put a fence up under a high voltage line and installed on insulators. He ran a wire from it to his house but all he could use it for was a heating load because he couldn't control the current. If the wind blew the wires around it would fluctuate. I heard Hydro caught on that there was a drain somewhere and found him and shut it down. I think one of the points they made to him was that someone who didn't know better could walk up and touch the fence and possibly be electrocuted.

A cousin down the road a mile had a sawmill next to a 130KVA line and Hydro warned him to store his logs perpendicular to the line and not parallel with it to avoid setting up a potential induction circuit.
 

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Since the electrical folks are reading this, perhaps someone could explain how 220 circuits are configured and what phase means in a 220 circuit?

When I was in high school, we did a production in the gym,and I rewired from the box to run our dimmers, but I can't recall how I did it.
 

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I took electronics in school. When soldering the high voltage on old style TVs if you left a 'point' in the joint, it could 'leak'. A rounded joint was necessary. You could hear a really bad one fizz.
I've always found that once you let the smoke out of anything electrical, it just didn't work the same....
 

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If I recall, I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express, 220 had four wires- black (hot), red (hot), white (neutral), and green (ground). The black and red supplied the current to add up to 220. Used to do R&D for two appliance manufacturers. Now single phase and 3 phase are a different ball game as we didn't have anything with those requirements. I do think it has something to do with the alternating current. Anyone else help out here?
 

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Tom; It'll take more electrical knowledge than I have...but basically, when we state an AC electrical voltage what we're actually referring to is the median voltage through the sine wave representing the energy as it flows from the generator
120v is a single phase, 240 is the total of the two phases...basically a figure 8 sine wave (not shown below).
3 phase is a bit different... 208V...see the diagram below representing the energy coming off the generator's windings. Again the number is the Root Means Squared (RMS).
 

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