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Warning: Don't open your power supply unless you know what you're doing.

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Richard

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2001
Warning: Don't open your power supply unless you know what you're doing.

I know I already replied to the thread about watercooling power supplies, but I can just see some kid running his hand over some charged capacitors and getting a heck of a shock.
 

FerrariF50

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2001
Location
Greenwich,CT,USA
Why did you get shocked??? I opened up mine about 3 weeks ago to clean the dust out. WOW my whole desk had dust all over it... Not sure if it helped with temps.
 
OP
Richard

Richard

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2001
No, I've never been shocked. I'm just trying to pass along some advice that I've been given. People have been shocked many times, because of carelessness or lack of experience. I tend to agree with learning from other's mistakes.
 

Thelemac

Administratively Deficient
Joined
Mar 15, 2001
Agreed. This goes for monitors, too. Or you can open them up and just not touch anything. That'll keep you pretty safe, too. Though it's best just not to open them at all. That way lightning cat can't jump in or anything. :)
 

Cowtown

Member
Joined
Jun 20, 2001
Location
Calgary, AB
Cripes I thought this kind of thing just went without saying. I have a deep and complete fear/respect for electricity! We have an understanding, I don't mess with it unless I have to and it does the job it is supposed to do! ;)
 

*spazzed*

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2000
Location
hamilton, ontario, canada
Now you tell me!!!!!!!!! j/j
I've gotten a small shock from the caps in my PSU, but then again, I've been shocked by many other things. The sparkplug wires in my van is one example :D
 

Quaky

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2001
I looked at all the capacitors of my PSU and the heaviest one was rated 4400 micro farad at 16v. I don't think a capacitor with a capacity of 4400 micro farad's at 16v can kill someone. Touching it would be an unpleasant surprise I believe, but I surely doubt that it is able to kill. I once got shocked by a 400v wire running to an industrial motor, and even that I survived. Your body has a certain resitance wich is nearly the same for all voltages. My point is that you need a fairly high voltage to send a lethal current through someone's body. With 16v however this won't work. You can get shocked, you can't get killed. Watch out for capacitors rated above 200 volts though. I haven't seen numbers about that, but it could be a different story...

Allways work safe if you do something, noone can stress this enough :D
 

Wa11y

Senior Thread Hijacker
Joined
May 17, 2001
Location
Six inches to the right.
Let me teach you all something REALLY important about electricity. It's fast. And it hurts. Unless you know what you're doing, DON'T PLAY WITH IT! If you crack open any electronic device without proper training, you're taking your life into your own hands. I'm not telling you not to play with it, but if you do, and you kill yourself, don't come here and whine about it! It's your own fault.
 

Quaky

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2001
I agree that you need the training to play with electricity. I have a degree in electronics so I know what I'm talking about.

I personaly think that someone who killed himself won'tl come here and whine about that though.

You make it sound like it's impossible for someone who hasn't had any training in electricity to open up a PSU and see which parts are running hot. If you don't know it, then you'd better be carefull while handling it. This doesn't say you may not handle it at al...

This is just ment to be informative and in no way to flame anyone or something.
 
OP
Richard

Richard

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2001
Which is why it says in the subject, "unless you know what you're doing."

I'm not suggesting that people not experiement. Just that they should try and educate themselves on the components before tinkering with them.

Ya dig?
 

[Oc]acaridans

Senior Member
Joined
May 11, 2001
[Oc]Wa11y said:
Let me teach you all something REALLY important about electricity. It's fast. And it hurts. Unless you know what you're doing, DON'T PLAY WITH IT! If you crack open any electronic device without proper training, you're taking your life into your own hands. I'm not telling you not to play with it, but if you do, and you kill yourself, don't come here and whine about it! It's your own fault.

And to note, even the people that know what there doing or think they know what there doing, should take the exact same percautions as everyone else, overconfidence is just as dangerous....In my automechanic days I got a little to confident with and igniton system, Wally is right it hurts. Everyone please be carefull
 

Quaky

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2001
I doubt that there are good electricians out there who haven't been shocked ever. If you work with electricity all day, things like this happen...

Richard999 : I took the "unless you know what you're doing." as unless "you have the needed training:". Now that's cleared up I agree with you totally, I just took it the wrong way :D...
 

Bender

Mysteriously Changing Senior
Joined
Dec 19, 2000
Location
In Thelemac's Basement Eating the Chickens
Capacitors can be very fun but very dangerous. My good bud and I spent a few moths fooling aound with capacitors making cattle prods and other such devices. The best prod we made wase from an old startrek phazor. It had 4 220v capacitors from disposible cameras, a custom charging circut, a tiny cooling fan and gold plated prods sticking out the front. All this was powered from 2 700ma Nickle Metal Hidride AAA batteries. The prod was so powerful it would leave schorch marks and 2 divits in a hardened steel screw driver. The effect was like a little bolt of lightening lighting up the room for an instant. The second coolest prod we made was stuffed inside one of those little Milk Dud boxes that only holds 3-4 pieces of the candy. This little devil had 2 220v capacitors, a very tiny charging circut and 1 N battery to power it. This prod did almost as much damage as the bigger prod but in a much smaller package. We never had any use for our projects but it was very fun to goof aound with. Remember to be very careful when working around capacitors and other electric devices. It isn't the voltage that kills its the amperage.
 

Quaky

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2001
It isn't the voltage that kills its the amperage.
I agree but you are much more likely to get to the lethal currents with higher voltages. If you see capacitors for more than a hundred volts KEEP OFF! For lower rated ones: be carefull!
 

wild_andy_c

NAKED Overclockers Unite! Senior
Joined
Dec 17, 2000
Location
Milton Keynes UK
Re: Warning: Don't open your power supply unless you know what you're doing.

Richard999 said:
I know I already replied to the thread about watercooling power supplies, but I can just see some kid running his hand over some charged capacitors and getting a heck of a shock.

Good call Richard
 

Lynx

Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2001
Location
Cambridge England
I agree with all of you. One way to help prevent shock is to discarge the psu before opening it. What I do is turn the psu off then tru to turn the comp on it will try to start and then stop
 

Quaky

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2001
You can even just pull the plug while the computer is running, that will also discharge any capacitors.

Finally we are getting to a safe way of tampering with PSU's :D
 

Rob Cork

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2000
Location
Woodcote, UK
Someone here mentioned you could sometimes get rid of fuzziness in old monitors by discharging the caps at the back. They suggested using a screwdriver with a wire going to ground wrapped around the metal shaft. I don't see any problem with that in principle, but it does still feel a bit ghetto :)

Anyone used that trick, and could you use it with the caps in the psu? I don't see why not, but I don't claim to have any electronics training so there could be something I've overlooked/don't know :)