Hipot Wars

To defeat Miss Auschwitz this time around I decided to do some hipot homework before I bother to involve the Bossman. He likes Miss Auschwitz about as much as getting a bullet in the forehead, I know he will back me up with regard to banishing her from our instrument line. However if I can figure out a way to eliminate the problem she wants to solve on my own without his help this situation will probably disappear much faster. I can use him as a last resort like calling in an artillery strike.

I took a walk around a few other departments this morning to look at how other instrument lines are providing hipot testing. I wanted to see what kind of set up they are using. Turns out all of them have identical vintage equipment. Their MI/EI test stations include ancient, bulky hipot gear. Those old units appear to be from the 1970s, with heavy mechanical switches and bone white background black needle gauges. Archaic stuff. I guess I have the only modern hipot tester in the division, an ASResearch 7550DT. It’s a digital unit complete with a nice bright green readout display, a set of large backlit red and green pass/fail indicators and it’s fully software programmable. Dr. Fist bought it a couple of years ago for a special Engineering project he was working on. I inherited it from him. The hipot test I conduct with this box floods each instrument with two thousand volts of juice for over a minute.

Engineers around here like to go dumpster diving for interesting items when nobody is looking. Dr. Fist is no exception to that. One evening while he was doing some garbage shopping in the site recycling center he spotted his ASResearch hipot tester in a trash bin. From the way he described it, he was angry someone had thrown it out. His project completed, he moved on to another department. Someone else must have tossed his gear. Funny thing was it didn’t break. Nobody had a need for it so into the trash it went. Typical, this company is wasteful on a scale I have not seen anywhere else. Anyway Dr. Fist salvaged his hipot tester, had it re-calibrated at the manufacturer and shipped back in. He gave it to our area shortly afterward.

Since I have a special piece of hipot gear none of the other instrument lines use I thought it might be a good idea to write an email to ASResearch and ask about the safety specs on their unit. If it has some super fast safety shut down during a high voltage failure maybe I could sidestep Miss Auschwitz and her silly Cone Of Silence. With that in mind I located the ASResearch website and wrote the following email to their customer service group:

I have been using one of your 7550DT units for some time and misplaced the operator’s manual. A question came up about the unit’s safety features and I wasn’t able to answer the question through online resources. In the event a direct short to ground occurs during Hipot testing with this unit, how quickly does the 7550DT detect the fault and shut off the power? I know it’s almost instant but I’d like to know if the power shutoff time is actually specified. Thanks in advance for your time.


~ by factorypeasant on March 5, 2010.

2 Responses to “Hipot Wars”

  1. Go get ‘em, Tiger! I am really glad to see you are posting again,
    Crazy Red Head

  2. Hi Jean. How the hell are you? Hope things have been going well for you. I got a chance to hang out with TC and B-rad mid February. Was good to see those kooks. We’ll have to hang out sometime for lunch or something. Drop me a line, maybe we could organize a little 8360/8370 reunion.

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