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Thread: Monopolies

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    Gold Member Sparks's Avatar
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    Angry Monopolies

    I am busy bringing an old age home to spec and have come across some disgusting behaviour. 4 Years ago the intercomm company started swopping the polarity on some units. Now there are a number of units not working for up to 4 years. They had people come look for faults over the years.

    I cannot believe that all of them, even the "Engineer" from Joburg, who charge R1.5K per hour, put their greed over the frail elderly and quoted astronomical amounts to rewire sections of the complex.

    You are welcome to say that I am not a very good businessman, however, the old people there built our country and created opportunities for us. They deserve the opportunity and peace of mind to know there is an intercom next to the bed which they can use to call someone while they are having a heart attack.

    The security company contributed to making the roofspace look like a bowl of spaghetti too but when I cut their wires to re-route them they politely cancelled their contract. Only they may work on their mess.

    So much for free-market. The one is as greedy as the next.

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    Are you saying that the intercom company deliberately sabotaged units by reversing polarity or was it accidental/ignorance?
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    Gold Member Sparks's Avatar
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    They had their guys out a few times and even an "Engineer" from Joburg(their company) who charged R1 500.00 per hour, yet failed to notice. They claimed that the cables were broken under the ground and need replacing. The chances of that being honest are no ways slim, they are non existent. Now I need recommendations for a good Tone& Probe kit. Any suggestions? This is new to me.

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    I picked up a good quality tone and probe set about a year ago for around R800.00 from Cape Cables in Cape Town, it's pretty good with adjustable sensitivity and it's the type that stops bleeping when you short out the two correct wires. I'm sure you can find one at any relevant wholesaler locally in PE though.
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    Gold Member Sparks's Avatar
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    Hi, I am sure I will, I was hoping to get make & model recommendations as this is not my field. There are a few different ones on the Net and I do not want to waste time with glorified junk. The closest I have to one is a T190CB fuse,circuit breaker and fault finder.

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    I had a feeling you might ask this so I grabbed it from the w/shop today :-)

    I've only probably used mine on a dozen installations and usually for tracing and identifying CAT5 cables. It's always worked well and can trace a cable in a wall up to a distance of around 500mm - 600mm. It's a pretty good middle of the range unit, it's certainly not junk and it's fairly affordable.

    Here's a picture, you should be able to get the make and model number from it.

    Ps. I also have a circuit breaker tone finder but it wouldn't be a good substitute for the cable tone set.
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    Gold Member Sparks's Avatar
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    Thanks Andy, this is the type of tester I need. There are quite a few available here but not this one. I guess I will have to try them one by one although it is so simple they should all work. I just don't see how they can sell for R1200 and up. It does not seem justified to me. If I had the time I would arder one over the net for R400 which cost R1800 here.

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    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    I would strongly recommend you get one with a headphones output jack which the particular one in the photo does have. Headphones are much better than the loudspeaker, they cut out background noise and improve definition which increases the accuracy and effectiveness considerably. Headphones are not supplied with the set however but any standard hi-fi headphones will work well.

    If you can't find a decent one locally give me a shout and I'll give you the details of my contact at Cape Cables. I checked the price of the set this morning for you and it's R850.00 EXC VAT. He says he can 'next day' courier to PE at an additional cost of R100.00 .
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    Gold Member Sparks's Avatar
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    Thanks, I did get one this morning, it does have a headphone jack. I will go look for headphones with a mono plug tomorrow. I have also made a lead with a small loudspeaker to help determine the distance from a break in the wire. Now I must just get used to the sound.

  10. #10
    Diamond Member AndyD's Avatar
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    Glad to hear you got sorted out and good luck with the wiring fault localization.
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