July 22, 2005

More Work Talk

I predicted it. Kevin and I were working in the machine room of some traction elevators today, and I heard him ask "How's it going back there, Johnny - Oh?". I just replied to him with a little "knowing" smile on my face.

We've been working for the last two weeks on a modernization of a group of three eight-stop gearless traction elevators in a local teaching hospital. It's been really interesting, and quite informative. These machines were installed sometime around 1962 or so, and have been running ever since. The controllers are nothing more than a huge set of relays (electro-mechanical switches) that are wired in such a way as to be able to control all the operations of the elevator. Certain relays "pick", and the car moves up or down, other's make the doors open, and still others dispatch which car comes to get you when you push the hall call. It's a very archaic way of doing things, but it still works. However, it's way past time for a little upgrade.

We are replacing the old controllers with a newer system. Everything is computer controlled, which should be right up my alley. The hard part is getting the physical connections made. It's a big "job O' work" just pulling i all the new wire. You've got to create a whole new conduit structure ("cuz you can only have one elevator down at a time, and there's hot wires in the old trough) that deviates from the original. One this job, everything is run through the floor, so we have to run our new stuff through the ceiling. We are rebuilding the fucking wheel here, and it's not a simple process. We do one machine at a time, and the other two are running while we are working. It's dirty. It's dangerous, and I completely love it.

Enough for now. Work at 7:30AM.

Posted by Johnny - Oh at July 22, 2005 12:38 AM | TrackBack
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