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Author Topic: Need someone mechanically-inclined  (Read 408 times)

MaineShark

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Need someone mechanically-inclined
« on: June 16, 2015, 02:13 PM NHFT »

I'm looking for a laborer for a solar array installation a bit east of Manchester.  Anticipating work to be the second half of next week, but I can't guarantee the exact schedule until materials arrive.

No previous experience with solar needed - general mechanical skills with wrenches, impact drivers, and the like is necessary.  Think "giant tinker toy."

Tools will be provided.  Just bring yourself, and appropriate clothing (mechanic's gloves are pretty much mandatory; steel-toed footwear preferred for safety).

It's probably two full days, but may be split into a full day and two half days, or such.

Pay is in half-day increments, plus a per day travel payment (which remains the same, even if it's only a half-day of paid work, since you have to travel to the site regardless)(that will, of course, encourage me to keep it in whole days if possible, but I'm sometimes limited by when materials are shipped).

Send me a PM to discuss pay.
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WithoutAPaddle

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2015, 03:19 PM NHFT »

Experience requirements:

Parents must have bought you an Erector Set for Christmas.


Seriously, it leaves us old timers shaking our heads when we see college graduates who don't know that you tighten nuts by turning them clockwise and loosen them by turning them counterclockwise, but then they can't understand how it is that we can't "see" how to make our phone start our car for us, either.  Two decades ago, when I was leaving a field service job with good will, I talked to the owner about what they might look for in my replacement, I told him that they would do better hiring a hobbyist rather than someone with engineering knowledge, but he told me that there was no such thing as a hobbyist anymore.  The entire contents of the "parts" section at a Radio Shack could fit in my trunk.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2015, 09:06 PM NHFT by WithoutAPaddle »
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MaineShark

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2015, 09:57 AM NHFT »

In my field, I need both ends.

"Tighten bolt by adding five-foot breaker bar and using two men to apply torque" get's juxtaposed with calculating the change in output voltage and amperage of a solar cell due to the temperature change from summer to winter, while accounting for the reflected light due to snow reflection.  Giant erector set ends up supporting solar panels which each have a computer mounted to adjust that panel's output to match the overall system voltage by networking over the 600V wiring.

Keeps the brain working, because both sides actually require thought.  Mis-judge the placement of the foundation, and the whole thing could come crashing down, regardless of how well-engineered the computing side happens to be.
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MaineShark

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2015, 11:49 AM NHFT »

Well, that project went well.  Giant erector sets are fun.  20 foot by 20 foot solar array, totaling about 2000 pounds, mounted on a pivoting head on top of a pole.

Did it with one full-time worker and one part-time helper, so I could supervise them efficiently.  Next time, I'm planning on using two workers and two helpers, and trying to get it done in a single day instead of two.  That should work, since we were spot-on with the man-hours this time... just spread out more.

And the pay seemed to work out fairly in both directions.  $250 per day ($125 per half-day) for a worker, plus $25 for travel, with a half-day being up to five hours and a full day being up to ten, but with a few short breaks and an hour for lunch, all paid.  Helpers paid a percentage of that based upon experience/skill (estimated for first job, then re-adjusted as experience is gained).

Eventually, I hope to A) get more of these sold and, B) get one or two workers trained up to supervising standards, so I don't have to spend the entire day as a supervisor, myself, and could be arranging the wiring and other bits while they do the mechanicals.
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Tom Sawyer

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #4 on: July 07, 2015, 12:46 PM NHFT »

Well, that project went well.  Giant erector sets are fun.  20 foot by 20 foot solar array, totaling about 2000 pounds, mounted on a pivoting head on top of a pole.

Did it with one full-time worker and one part-time helper, so I could supervise them efficiently.  Next time, I'm planning on using two workers and two helpers, and trying to get it done in a single day instead of two.  That should work, since we were spot-on with the man-hours this time... just spread out more.

And the pay seemed to work out fairly in both directions.  $250 per day ($125 per half-day) for a worker, plus $25 for travel, with a half-day being up to five hours and a full day being up to ten, but with a few short breaks and an hour for lunch, all paid.  Helpers paid a percentage of that based upon experience/skill (estimated for first job, then re-adjusted as experience is gained).

Eventually, I hope to A) get more of these sold and, B) get one or two workers trained up to supervising standards, so I don't have to spend the entire day as a supervisor, myself, and could be arranging the wiring and other bits while they do the mechanicals.

Wow, a 400 sq.ft. sail. Hope it works out well in a storm.
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WithoutAPaddle

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2015, 01:45 PM NHFT »

"They" stopped making the Erector set as "we" knew it in 1962.  A.C. Gilbert had died in 1961 and his estate's assets had to be sold off to meet the tax obligations, and the company that took over the trade name and patents started manufacturing junk that was barely recognizable as an Erector set product.   

Everyone who ever had an Erector set gained valuable experience from it. I owned a total of six, but four of them were the $.99 (?) cardboard tube "entry level" sets, whereas one was the Musical Ferris Wheel, which was the second largest one they offered that year (1960, maybe?).  Contrast that with our experiences with our chemistry sets, where we would just do the experiments that burned, or exploded, or stunk up the place, until we ran out of those chemicals without ever learning anything that could be used to do anything constructive.

One cardboard tube Erector set that I bought just to add a few girders to my inventory was so old that it had a parts list in it that had included the discontinued, A48 wind up motor.  I thought it would be cool to have a motor like that so that my robot's travel range would not be confined to the length of the A49 motor's AC cord, so I mailed them a couple of bucks - if it was even that much - and they scrounged one up for me.

« Last Edit: July 07, 2015, 02:00 PM NHFT by WithoutAPaddle »
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MaineShark

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2015, 05:49 PM NHFT »

Wow, a 400 sq.ft. sail. Hope it works out well in a storm.

It's rated for 120MPH winds.  Granted, part of that is the fact that it has an anemometer on top, and flattens out when the winds get too high.  But even so, it offers significant wind resistance, and meets that rating by using some substantial bits of steel.  And four serious bolts at the base, which require around 1000 ft-lbs of torque to tighten properly.  Or, 1 ft-kip, for those who know what kips are.  I think I'm getting a longer breaker bar for the next one - the five-footer was doable, but even with two guys, was a serious strain (200 lbs horizontally, while bend down to grab the bar that's half a foot above ground level).  A six- or seven-foot bar would do better.  Maybe even eight, to actually make it easy.
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Tom Sawyer

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2015, 08:06 PM NHFT »

Wow, a 400 sq.ft. sail. Hope it works out well in a storm.

It's rated for 120MPH winds.  Granted, part of that is the fact that it has an anemometer on top, and flattens out when the winds get too high.  But even so, it offers significant wind resistance, and meets that rating by using some substantial bits of steel.  And four serious bolts at the base, which require around 1000 ft-lbs of torque to tighten properly.  Or, 1 ft-kip, for those who know what kips are.  I think I'm getting a longer breaker bar for the next one - the five-footer was doable, but even with two guys, was a serious strain (200 lbs horizontally, while bend down to grab the bar that's half a foot above ground level).  A six- or seven-foot bar would do better.  Maybe even eight, to actually make it easy.

I thought you probably had it all figured out.  8)

Wow, a thousand foot pounds... must be some big dang bolts.
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MaineShark

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2015, 10:11 PM NHFT »

Wow, a thousand foot pounds... must be some big dang bolts.

1" diameter (1-5/8" head).  But very strong steel, so they can take the tension without cracking.
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Russell Kanning

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2015, 10:57 PM NHFT »

120 mile an hour winds ...... insane
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WithoutAPaddle

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2015, 03:21 AM NHFT »

"Not certified for Mt. Washington."
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Russell Kanning

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #11 on: July 09, 2015, 01:53 PM NHFT »

we rode the gondola to the top of Monarch Pass in Colorado yesterday .... it was windy but not enough to shut it down
I was imagining how much snow they get and how bad the wind gets .... there were a few towers up there, but not very tall
we were at about 12,000 feet
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Joseph3poe

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Re: Need someone mechanically-inclined
« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2015, 09:32 AM NHFT »

Hi, everyone. My name is Jonathan Zhao. I am Chinese, and I am living in Philadelphia City, USA as a resident. I came here 3 and a half years ago. I am studying in Community College of Phila. I still think learning English is a different job. I am feeling the more I know, the much more I need to know about them. Sometime is quite sad that I don't even know when can I become master in English. And I am happy to find out this forum, I think I can meet a lot of friends like me here. I believe that this is a nice place to learn English, and meet some friends.
 Greeting,
 Jonathan Zhao
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