Shorting Stick

Discussion in '"Boat Anchor" & Classic Equipment' started by N3FH, Sep 1, 2021.

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  1. N3FH

    N3FH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Shorting sticks were once a common sight on the homebrew workbench. Many folks made their own. I am interested in finding out if any folks still have one, and how many designs there are for a DIY shorting stick.
     
  2. K1LKP

    K1LKP Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    OH MY GOD CHRIS,

    I KNOW I SAW THE SHORTING STICK ABOUT TEN YEARS AGO.

    IF I RECALL, IT WAS DOWN ON MY MESSY WORK BENCH.

    I DON'T THINK I WUD USE IT, I WUD PROBABLY BUILD
    ANOTHER ONE THAT IS "OSHA" APPROVED.....hihihi...

    KRIS, AS FOR HOW MANY DESIGNS THERE ARE FOR A DIY SHORTING STICK.

    KRIS...... WUD U LIKE TO COUNT THE NUMBER OF JELLY BEANS IN
    THE JAR AT THE ARRL HEADQUARTERS....... ONLY HIRAM KNOWS.

    HAVE A FUN FILLED DAY AND PSE KEEP SAFE
    WID THIS DARNED CORONA VIRUS THAT JUST
    WONT GO AWAY.

    K1LKP SOCIAL SMILING JUNE 2020 WITH CHICKEN SMALL.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2021
    N3FH and W9WQA like this.
  3. N2EY

    N2EY Ham Member QRZ Page

    I use a VOM set to the appropriate range.
     
    KA9JLM likes this.
  4. W3SLK

    W3SLK Ham Member QRZ Page

    I found a 'military' style one that I used whilst in the USN. It has an acrylic handle with a straight and L-bent probe and a large alligator clip on a piece of weaved copper. It has a voltage rating curve table on it as well. It's saved my 'bohunkous' many times!
     
  5. KE0ZU

    KE0ZU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I still have a CHICKEN STICK in the test lead rack.
     
    WA1GXC likes this.
  6. K7MEM

    K7MEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I didn't keep one on the work bench. I carried one in my back pocket.

    Where I once worked, one of the 30 KW RF Heat Sealing machines had a defective bleeder. So before we did any work on it, we had to discharge the voltage. I would use a fuse puller with a adjustable wrench clamped in the end. Everyone's adjustable wrench had black marks on them.

    Back then, safety in the workplace wasn't what it is today. Today, there would be "crime scene" tape all around that unit.
     
  7. NB3R

    NB3R Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I bought an AL-80a from my Elmer (Barry KU3X). He made Chicken Stick for me and included it in the deal.

    He showed me how to use it when I wanted to tune the 15m slug for 17m. I was too chicken to do it myself.

    One of many valuable lessons he has given me.
     
  8. G3YRO

    G3YRO Ham Member QRZ Page

    Having worked professionally on thousands of Valve Transceivers, Transmitters, and Linear Amplifiers, I never used any special tool to discharge the HT before putting my hands inside . . .

    Just a large flat-bladed screwdriver. I would rest the shaft on the top of the PA cage, and slide it across to the Anode Caps of the valves.

    Roger G3YRO
     
    KE4OH likes this.
  9. W5UAA

    W5UAA Ham Member QRZ Page

    I grew up in Air Force electronics with shorting sticks in just about all racks of equipment. If there were tubes, there was always a shorting stick permanently bonded to the frame/rack and hanging right there. That was always on the checklist when the Inspector General showed up and if a shorting stick was missing, that was a HUGE SAFETY VIOLATION. It was always the first tool I used before putting my hands in the equipment. I always enjoyed the spark when there was one.

    Today, I do it without the spark.

    When I bought my first AL-80B back in the 90's, I spliced a resister in a wire between two insulated alligator clips. Same concept as my ESD workstation. But instead of a 1M Ohm to ground from my mat and wrist strap, it's a 250 Ohm to ground from my plate voltage.

    When ever I do my annual "clean the dust bunnies out" of my AL-80B, the first thing I do after unscrewing and removing the lid is clip one side to the frame and then the other side to the plate of my 3-500 and leave it there until the only thing left to do is screw the lid back on.

    Plate voltage scares me.
     
  10. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    My High Voltage probe does a good job for discharging slowly.

    The plus is that I can see the voltage drop.
    That is a good idea, But can be hard to do when discharging 5 kV +.

     
    KA0HCP likes this.

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