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Neighbor came by to greet me while doing my outside inspection this morning. He explained that the seller, 90 yr old Marge, had him install exterior lights on all four sides with motion detectors. Occasionally one motion sensor would go out and make all the lights stay on. He had put a relay in the attic to join the lights together. He was obviously very proud of his work but wanted to warn me that he could not find a junction box for the relay switch so improvised. He said the only thing he could find that was the right size was a plastic index file box.

When I was packing up to leave he came by to mention that Marge's husband (dead 20 years) had wired up a subpanel somewhere in the basement that used power from one leg of the 240 stove circuit. He wasnt quite sure where the subpanel was but he wanted me to know anyway. It might be the light fixture being used as a impromptu fuse panel.

I only found 5 double taps in the fuse panel before I stopped looking. Some one had removed all the 30 amp fuses and replaced them with 15 and 20 amp as part of getting ready to sell. Handful of 30 amp fuses in the bottom of the panel.

Then he offered to sell me Marge's 94 Camry. Runs real good! He mentioned he had just fixed/rebuilt some part of his 80's station wagon that only has 350K miles on it.

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Agent stopped by to tell me not to be scared/shocked/upset if I find any dead rats/mice. The pest guy said there were some in the crawlspace. Yep, I found at least 2 corpses.

Otherwise this 1960, 53 year old, one owner home was a beautiful place. Marge kept a nice home.

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It's always a help when a talkative neighbor comes over to 'help' the inspection. One such neighbor told me of an old steel septic tank that was half buried under the house. It was shallow enough for me to confirm with an Erby screwdriver. The footing was perhaps 6 inches from finish grade where it passed over the tank. That neighbor's hint gave me the reason for a humongous crack in the concrete floor that ran clear across the entire house passing directly over the tank.

I've been very forthcoming since then to any neighbor that wants to talk.

Marc

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  • 2 weeks later...

He said the only thing he could find that was the right size was a plastic index file box.

The only thing he could find that was the right price was the plastic file box.

When I was packing up to leave he came by to mention that Marge's husband (dead 20 years) had wired up a subpanel somewhere in the basement that used power from one leg of the 240 stove circuit. He wasnt quite sure where the subpanel was but he wanted me to know anyway. It might be the light fixture being used as a impromptu fuse panel.

A subpanel substitute?

I only found 5 double taps in the fuse panel before I stopped looking. Some one had removed all the 30 amp fuses and replaced them with 15 and 20 amp as part of getting ready to sell. Handful of 30 amp fuses in the bottom of the panel.

He knew they'd be needed when the small fuses started burning out.

That's the 3rd instance I've heard in the past couple of weeks of circuits tapped off of the stove circuit. The fuse makes it a bit safer than the junk I saw, #12 wiring on 40 amp breakers.

That's the Erby civil war cutlass, if I'm not mistaken. For knocking down cobwebs, I just use a stick myself. [:)]

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Wood probe, pry bar, cobweb gather, arm extender, cane in those bend over and walk crawl spaces, self defense against dogs, once (and I hope never again) a raccoon killer, and by golly, I think once I even used it as a screw driver to get the brass cover off a floor outlet.

It's just handy!

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My preference is the pocket-sized stiletto.

I take an occasional electrical cover off with it.

I avoid pasting arrows on pics with my handy dagger.

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If we had Daniel Boone coons here, I'd probably need an Erby cutlass too.

She's ready to jump if I get any closer to the young'uns. I'm reachin around for my Bowie knife and backing away slowww. [:>]

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