attn: BigWallop - yer binary woes hopefully solved!

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On Thu, 16 Oct 2003 10:50:04 +0100, Witchy

No. If you read their web site then there are 3 different ways you can join. The 3rd way (hello Mr Bliar...) is that you have C&G2381, C&G2391, and have been trading for 12 months. Nothing about being a time-served sparky in there.
PoP
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wrote:

Right, so I've got to get the bits of paper whilst trading for 12 months. Bugger.
-- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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On Thu, 16 Oct 2003 18:16:46 +0100, Witchy

I don't think you have to do any buggering to make an application, though I suppose it depends which way their inspector is inclined. ;)
The 12 months is if-fy, according to their web site they appear to suggest it might do to have 6 months.
Which possibly means I will be okay, in so far that by the time next April arrives I will have at least 6 months under my belt.
But I have to say that I'm not committed to this registration yet. C&G2381 cost me about 150. C&G2391 will be about the same. I can swallow those figures.
But then you need about 800 of test equipment for 16th edition certification purposes. And another 600 to get into NICEIC. Those sorts of numbers aren't comfortable for me right now. I can afford it as things stand but I'm wondering whether it is worth the investment.
Perhaps there is an opportunity herein to do certification jobs for others who haven't got the necessary equipment and qualifications. I'm looking at that option right now because when I phoned the local council to enquire about the new regs the suggestion was that the charge was most likely to be at least 70 (+VAT) and could be 250 depending on what needed to be done. So if I can offer that certification service for say 50 and do a couple a day then I'm healthy in a financial sense.
Whereas a "real" sparky offering that service probably wouldn't get out of bed to do a job for 50.
Maybe, just maybe, there is scope here for some of us local tradesmen to collectively work together on these sorts of things - remain independent but linked as needs arise. Maybe one who is corgi registered, another BS7671 registered, etc. Maybe it'd be a bit like herding cats - but I'd be interested in discussing further if others were.
Don't forget that to issue the BS7671 certificates (and I think this applies to corgi too) does NOT require that that individual has to perform the installation - the certificate just needs to be issued by someone who is considered competent to do so. In which case I think we'd all be daft to rush out and try to jump over the hurdle!
PoP
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[...]

I haven't done the 2391 yet, though like you I'm on my way there. I think when you do you'll change your mind about doing "a couple a day" for "50". As a preparation I went out and bought all the books I could find on the subject of "inspection and testing" and it's emphatically *not* a simple case of turning up, plugging a machine into a few sockets and pressing a button or two. Not that I've done a test yet, but I would guess that a full test on a new house rewire that I've just completed could easily take half a day (2 or 3 hours - though some of that will be all the form-filling), and that a full test on something someone else has done where I also have to work out their tortured wiring will take substantially longer.

Good point. I already know some friendly plumbers/decorators etc. around here and when I've mentioned my plans they usually say something like "we'll mention you next time we're asked about...".
And while we're on the subject, what about bloomin' Portable Appliance Testing? Just had a bloke come to work to do it (I'm temping at a tourist attraction while sparkyism gets off the ground). I used to do it at a previous place of employment, and this guy was just taking the mick.
* absolutely everything (including the tills which are never moved) is on a 6-month PAT schedule.
* some Class-I (earthed) items on his checklist had "Earth - n/a" written down against them.
* he didn't test equipment separately from removeable leads, and attached the stickers to the leads rather than the equipment.
* at least two items of equipment got stickers while the testing machine was at the other end of the office.
* values for insulation resistance and earth impedance (where taken) were not recorded, just "P/F" (pass/fail) written in the column.
And that was from 5 minutes observation!
Grrr!
Hwyl!
M.
--
Martin Angove: http://www.tridwr.demon.co.uk /
Don't fight technology, live with it: http://www.livtech.co.uk /
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On Fri, 17 Oct 2003 08:46:11 +0100, Martin Angove

The company that inspected my handiwork recently sent 2 people for the job and they were there for an hour, but that wasn't a full rewire, only a new CU, socket/switch replacement where no earth was present and new cross-bonding on the pipes. The only test kit they used was the device that tests how long the breakers took to disconnect under a short circuit.

I'm keeping my hand in with the electrical shop just down the road - it was one of the blokes there that suggested I get the bits of paper and set meself up whilst regaling the tale of a recent job he did for someone who wanted a new socket putting in without disturbing the floor or damaging the wallpaper.

I think it takes next to nowt to add that to your portfolio, so why not offer it as a service? -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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"Witchy" wrote | I'm keeping my hand in with the electrical shop just down the | road - it was one of the blokes there that suggested I get | the bits of paper and set meself up whilst regaling the tale | of a recent job he did for someone who wanted a new socket | putting in without disturbing the floor or damaging the | wallpaper.
Putting in the new socket would be no problem.
Connecting a cable to it so that he could get electricity out of it might be a slight difficulty though.
Tempted to say it would depend exactly what was on the quote :-)
Unless B&Q are selling the bits for this wireless electricity people keep talking about.
Owain
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On Fri, 17 Oct 2003 13:43:17 +0100, "Owain"

I think they got lucky and were able to go through the wall from the other side like a lot of the wiring in this house.

Wouldn't that mean we'd all have to be insulated so's to not get electrocuted when in range? :) -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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Cuz a PAT machine costs almost as much as a set of 16th Edition test gear. I have a catalogue here from Cuthbertson Laird and their cheapest PAT machine is 400, and that is restricted in the tests it can do. The next model up is 600. The Robin 16th Ed. kit is 750 on offer. All ex-VAT and requiring calibration certificates.
The traceability is also a pain. If you're the only one at a site, fine, but if someone else has previously done the job or if it's never been done, tracing all relevant kit is a nightmare.
Hwyl!
M.
--
Martin Angove: http://www.tridwr.demon.co.uk /
Don't fight technology, live with it: http://www.livtech.co.uk /
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On Fri, 17 Oct 2003 20:41:50 +0100, Martin Angove

Eep. Presumably the calibration certs cost an arm and a leg too, so any idea of the full cost of the 16th Ed kit? I don't want to start pouring my savings into a potential non-starter!

I thought you had to test everything that wasn't double insulated? -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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1002 inc. cal. cert, VAT and carriage :-) The certificate in itself was something like 70 plus VAT (PAT testers certificated from 50); not a lot really, though it should be re-done every year or so. Of course, there are occasionally bargains on e-Bay, but only if you're not too bothered about their provenance.

AIUI, you have to test everything that is (potentially) portable. In theory.
The main confusions come when people insist that absolutely everything with a plug should be tested every 12 months (or less!). Isn't there someone here who has just done a PAT course? Am I right in thinking that there are no "regulation intervals" as such, but rather that phrases like "regular testing" are used without specifying? This makes sense to me, as some kit (erm... an extension lead used in a mobile disco for example) should be tested a *lot* more often than other kit (erm... a rack full of audio kit in the broadcast chain which is never moved!).
The problem when someone else has previously done the job is the re-use of their serial numbers, many of which may be missing or unreadable - if you have twenty identical computers (say) and half the serial numbers have fallen off...
Hwyl!
M.
--
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Don't fight technology, live with it: http://www.livtech.co.uk /
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On Fri, 24 Oct 2003 20:05:26 +0100, Martin Angove

Kinnell, that's a big chunk of savings for someone who hasn't been getting any 'jobseekers allowance' for nearly 6 months......
Me, I mean :) -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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On Fri, 24 Oct 2003 20:48:13 +0100, Witchy

Look on it as an investment. After April 1st next year you will be able to charge premium rates for issuing certificates for all those sparkies out there who won't be licensed to issue certificates.....
However, I wouldn't bank my savings on this idea. I've recently started thinking in terms of taking the work on and advising the householder (or whoever) in writing that it is their duty to arrange for the certification.
Another option would be for me to issue certificates, but which aren't formally recognised as being NICEIC certificates and rubber stamped as such (and thus not acceptable under the new regs). There's an obvious difficulty with that approach - but given that the required testing was seen to be taking place, and properly documented, a judge would have to take into consideration that just because the test wasn't recorded on the blue-rinsed NICEIC certificate doesn't mean it would be totally invalid in the event of a fatality or problem.
Thinking about this by way of example - a car driver who causes a fatality might be found not to have an MOT certificate on his vehicle, and would be prosecuted accordingly. But if the vehicle happened to be considered roadworthy (the brakes and every other major feature worked fine upon inspection and it was just the lacking certificate was the problem) then the individual would escape much more serious charges. A vehicle in its 11th month of an MOT might not be roadworthy at all, but the driver could be penalised for driving a vehicle in an unroadworthy condition!
I regret these comments might cause a bit of further discussion on this thread ;)
PoP
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"PoP" wrote | Another option would be for me to issue certificates, but which aren't | formally recognised as being NICEIC certificates and rubber stamped as | such (and thus not acceptable under the new regs). There's an obvious | difficulty with that approach - but given that the required testing | was seen to be taking place, and properly documented, a judge would | have to take into consideration that just because the test wasn't | recorded on the blue-rinsed NICEIC certificate doesn't mean it would | be totally invalid in the event of a fatality or problem.
I would regard the situation as similar to installing a beam in a building; a structural engineer can sign off the design and installation, but it's not legal unless there's a Building Regs Application. The engineer's signature is evidence of compliance with the technical aspects of the regs, but the law requires the procedure of the B Regs application as well.
Presumably most wiring work could be done under building notice procedure and if there's a certificate of compliance for design, inspection and test i.e. the full 3-part certificate not a periodic test one, the council building control officer would be unlikely to require exposure of concealed works etc.
Owain
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Well, I've given it a new subject, will this help? :-)
[regarding a "16th Edition test kit" for over a grand, and the economics of purchasing same:]

completed is absolutely compliant and will test as such, then probably valid, but just how sure can you be that there's not a bit of pinched cable somewhere, or that the ring you have just extended doesn't have a bit of 1mmsq somewhere unless you perform at least a subset of the 16th edition tests?
With your idea I think you'd have to assume that the householder *won't* actually seek to spend any more money (and time) arranging for a test to be carried out and that therefore your work will probably exist uncertificated for an indeterminate length of time - probably either until the house is sold or some accident happens which causes people to look at the installation. If people trace some electrical work back to you, and you can't *prove* - with paperwork - that at the time you left it it was absolutely perfectly compliant, then you could be headed for trouble.
It's a bit like the situation where you take the car for its MOT a week before it is due, and it fails. Technically at that point it is illegal to drive the car at all (the more recent test supercedes the older one), but if you need to take it across town to your favourite garage, or to the tyre place or whatever, who is going to stop you driving it? What if that bald tyre which caused the failed MOT is a possible cause of an accident en-route? I think that - in these circumstances - it is usually the *driver* who is blamed, but is the equivalent the case for electrical work - or gas work?

But does the certificate have to say NICEIC at the top? AFAIAA it is the IEE which sets the tests and the standards for those tests, and that it is the IEE guidelines as set out in documents such as "the regs" which the law will say should be adhered to. The example certificates are printed in the backs of both BS7671 and the On Site Guide, neither of which is a NICEIC publication. If you have a set of test equipment which can perform those tests, and if you use it appropriately, why should your certificate say NICEIC?
I know Andy Hall has done a lot of research on this - and I just found a post of his where he seems to say that the regulations come April *will* require all those issuing certificates to also be NICEIC registered. Perhaps he can enlighten us as to the exact wording?
Hwyl!
M.
--
Martin Angove: http://www.tridwr.demon.co.uk /
Don't fight technology, live with it: http://www.livtech.co.uk /
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I could be completely wrong - but an MOT is valid for 12 months from date of issue (longer if you renew it up to 28 days before the old one expires). Failing an MOT does not void the previous certificate, and AFAIK, its legal to drive it on the road right up until the day the old one expires (subject to it being roadworthy). Remember - an MOT is really only a statement that the vehicle passed the necessary checks on the day of testing. Its possible that a few days later, something changes and it would no longer pass the MOT. Doesn't mean that the MOT is now void.
Case in point - our car failed its MOT on two points - bushes on front suspension split and rear exhaust split. Garage stated that as we still had 3 weeks left on our MOT, we could drive it away and return it to them later in the month to get it fixed. Its also possible to fail on emissions - which wouldn't be classed as a dangerous/unroadworthy vehicle (as opposed to bald tyres).
The bottom line though is that it is the driver's responsibility to ensure that the vehicle is safe to drive, has a current MOT and is insured etc.
D
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On Sat, 25 Oct 2003 18:47:46 +0100, Martin Angove

My studies of this new legislation have led me to believe that in order for the certificate to be valid then it must have been issued by someone who has been accepted as competent by NICEIC. Being accepted by NICEIC and competent are of course two separate things - in order to get into NICEIC an inspection of previous work is carried out, and our bodger electrician might point the inspector to some work which was carried out by someone else, etc.
This is hugely wasteful legislation in my opinion. All government needed to do was made BS7671 mandatory (which it isn't currently), requiring everyone (no omissions) to be held responsible for the work they undertake.
At present BS7671 is advisory, not mandatory.
PoP
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"PoP" wrote [changing order to facilitate reply] | At present BS7671 is advisory, not mandatory.
in England and Wales.
| This is hugely wasteful legislation in my opinion. All government | needed to do was made BS7671 mandatory (which it isn't currently), | requiring everyone (no omissions) to be held responsible for the | work they undertake.
Which is the situation in Scotland. BS7671 is cited in the Building Regulations Scotland and if you do a new build/extension etc the BCO will usually want to see a Certificate before granting the Building Warrant. Minor works in existing buildings seem to be taken on trust.
Owain
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wrote:

6 months is what I read here not so long back, which is what set me off trying to find a local college that did the courses.

Yep. There was a thread here not so long back about setting up as a sparky and what test kit was needed. It wasn't by you was it?

With the amount I'm earning I'd probably get out of bed for less than that ATM :)

Something to bear in mind.....
-- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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wrote:

Hmm .. good 'ere innit! I joined the IT industry with HP in er, .. (blushes) 1972, and left Compaq with a brown envelope in 2000. My own (IT Consulting) business has had peaks and troughs over the last three years, but it seems to have been getting more and more difficult finding suitable work during this last year. I think I'd make an honest and conscientious "contract DIY" person, and I'd enjoy it too, but doubt that I'd work fast enough to be able to make a living at it - too picky about the fine detail.
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On Thu, 16 Oct 2003 12:15:50 +0100, "Mike Faithfull"

'kin hell. You aren't THE Mike Faithfull who used to work at London Airport orifice and then CSC where I used to bolt together the HP1000's before they got shipped to my customer sites are you? You'll be telling me you are into ham-fisted radio next ;)
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