Thursday, August 13, 2009

A copper mine

We were at the new stadium yesterday working on the parking lot lights when my leadman called me over to do a pull for the scoreboard.
It was about 400 feet long with four #4 stranded and a #6 ground in a 1" conduit. Then they added another circuit of #12s, so I was now supposed to pull seven wires through a 1" hole, 400 feet long.

So I get set up with my boom extended to all of it's 55 feet to get above the framework of the target megatron screen and drop the winch line. As I'm on the phone, I tell them they need either a rope or a triple mule tape pull because of both the distance and I *know* how some of that conduit was bent (ovalled) when it was run.

They said they couldn't use a rope because they couldn't fit a made-up head inside the pipe, so I pulled two tapes through and told them we were going to have problems because I was feeling lots of tension on the truck just pulling that head.

I don't know how many 90's I pulled that wire through ( ths code calls for a max of 4 in a single run) but I know I had to idle down and let that wire decide by its self when it wanted to come through some spots- or I'd for sure lose it.

I finally got to the last 90 going up the base of the scoreboard when I hit a something that didn't want to give. I tried everything I could to coax it through the problem and it seemed to be working as my boom started regaining the foot it got sucked down (think of a 55' fishing rod) and I took up slack again and popped both those mule tapes. The guy at my end caught the tape and we retied, and after gaining about a foot snapped that, too and lost it in the conduit.

Today, they tried pulling it back for another try, but no matter what they did, it was unmovable, so there is about 500 pounds of abandoned copper under a brand new stadium in San Antonio.
Of course it's under the press box, parking lot and the astro turf field it's self, but if you want to try for it......

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