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I need to ground myself

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June 1, 2010 12:35:59 AM

I will be building my new PC this week and have a nice flat wooden desk to work on. The only problem I foresee is static buildup from my floors. I only have access to carpeted floors. I was wondering if I could use an ac adapter with a 3 prong end and a metal plug in on the other side as a grounding device. I think that three prong means it is grounded correct? Here is a picture of a dell adapter. It's a picture of the end that goes into the computer, the other end is a 3 prong plug. Any advice would be great as I don't want to fry my computer.



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June 1, 2010 12:44:10 AM

Bumped with picture
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June 1, 2010 1:01:49 AM

I know but wouldn't attaching that metal end to my body work just as well? I'm basically doing the same thing.
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June 1, 2010 1:07:08 AM

I mean to be honest I have never used anything to DE-Static myself all I did was just touch the frame of the case once and a while to make sure I didn't have any static, but I have NEVER had a problem with static even with a lot of carpet.

I myself wouldn't even worry about it.
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June 1, 2010 1:09:08 AM

gound is not necessarily ground for all devices

you want to put yourself at the same ground that the case is currently at

just get a wrist strap and clip onto the case bro
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June 1, 2010 1:10:14 AM

also dont worry about it

i worked in a test lab for a few months and never wore my strap (since i knew i wasnt going to be there long) and i never got any complaints about static fried boards and nothing i ever worked on tested good before i worked on it and bad afterwards.

that was like 40 hours a week for 3 months of not wearing a strap, odds are pretty astronomical for actually frying your stuff on a single project.
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June 1, 2010 1:11:16 AM

I guess I'm just worried because I will be working on carpet.
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June 1, 2010 1:12:09 AM

if your worried just get a strap and connect it to your case

also most test labs have carpet its not really a big deal if you even occaisionally touch the case, especially before you touch any pins
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June 1, 2010 1:27:31 AM

Haha if the outlet isn't properly grounded then the wrist strap is worthless, or do I have faulty thinking?
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June 1, 2010 1:29:53 AM

Floks said:
Haha if the outlet isn't properly grounded then the wrist strap is worthless, or do I have faulty thinking?


I'm thinking if your house dosn't have the proper requirments to run a basic power cable -- where do you live lol? :o 

If your worried about the plug so much, I would say plug something into it. :) 
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June 1, 2010 2:49:44 AM

As it would turn out my surge protector has a ground indicator, so no need for a tester. I'm still looking for the answer as to weather or not my cord would work as a ground. Basically the wrist strap is a metal connection between you and your ground, right? So doesn't my power cord have these same properties?
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June 1, 2010 3:24:13 AM

I really wouldn't worry about it.
A much larger risk is that you will drop one of your components.
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Best solution

June 1, 2010 6:12:06 AM

gobblock882 said:
also dont worry about it

i worked in a test lab for a few months and never wore my strap (since i knew i wasnt going to be there long) and i never got any complaints about static fried boards and nothing i ever worked on tested good before i worked on it and bad afterwards.

that was like 40 hours a week for 3 months of not wearing a strap, odds are pretty astronomical for actually frying your stuff on a single project.


Nobody that knows what they are doing would give advice like this. Most static damage is of the "walking wounded" variety. You don't feel it and the system appears to runs fine at first. Then months later, the degradation and failures that you don't connect to the static occur.

If you value your investment, take static electricity seriously.
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a b B Homebuilt system
June 1, 2010 1:37:40 PM

Erm?? Any Mods on to check this guy out??
ty
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a b B Homebuilt system
June 1, 2010 6:11:04 PM

Please don't quote spam message.
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June 1, 2010 6:39:14 PM

Floks said:
Haha if the outlet isn't properly grounded then the wrist strap is worthless, or do I have faulty thinking?


Ground is a relative thing. Being "grounded" to the case you're working on is more important than earth ground. So I'd agree that having a wrist strap connected to the case is plenty of protection. The quality of an earth ground in your home wiring is not related to static electric buildup issues. You can also work quite safely without a wrist strap, I believe, if you are often or constantly touching the case. But the strap is more reliable.
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June 1, 2010 6:50:39 PM

saint19 said:
Please don't quote spam message.


Sorry.
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June 1, 2010 7:10:56 PM

TopherC said:
Ground is a relative thing. Being "grounded" to the case you're working on is more important than earth ground. So I'd agree that having a wrist strap connected to the case is plenty of protection. The quality of an earth ground in your home wiring is not related to static electric buildup issues. You can also work quite safely without a wrist strap, I believe, if you are often or constantly touching the case. But the strap is more reliable.



The case can only "absorb" a finite amount of static electricity if it is not itself grounded.
In dry weather and for example on carpet, that may or may not be enough.

In any case, I've never quite understood why people are making this into such a big deal.

People spend hundreds if not thousands of USD on their components. Why not just spend an extra $4 on an antistatic wrist strap? That way you have protected yourelf from any possible instability issues due to static discharges and it only cost ya a few bucks!
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June 1, 2010 7:23:41 PM

I agree, just buy the strap and call it a day...
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June 1, 2010 7:49:45 PM

Sounds like I'm buying a wrist strap, but my one other issue with the strap is that I've noticed many reviews saying that the strap they received was not constructed properly leaving an incomplete circuit. The wire was not continuous and had a break in the ground. I get the feeling that these cheap straps are not a very good guarantee of safety. Does anyone have a suggestion on a wrist strap to purchase that is reliably built? And would I just connect it to the case I guess?
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June 1, 2010 7:53:31 PM

I still feel like I haven't gotten a definitive answer. I will purchase a wrist strap. I will connect it to the case. What else can I do to ground myself?
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June 1, 2010 8:11:28 PM

I think your worrying about it to much, All you have to do is:

Don't put any of your components on a carpet or clothes ETC....Work on a wooden or glass surface.
Touch a metal part of your case every few minutes, it will be enough to ground yourself.

If your still not happy then buy a antistatic wrist strap and attach it to a radiator (and obviously wear the strap).
That is all you need to do, infact the wrist strap (IMO) is overkill, I've been building PC's for 4 years and never used one, All I do is touch the case.
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a b B Homebuilt system
June 1, 2010 8:22:45 PM

I'm sure everyone said the samething but I myself have never used one of those anti-static wrist wraps either. I just put my bear feet on the case, my chair (metal) or my bed frame (metal as well) when I build my rigs. Never had a problem so far.
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June 1, 2010 10:30:58 PM

I fried an old pentium rig while changing the CPU a loong time ago. Now that was quite clumsy and that's the only time I've broken a component. Then again, after that I've always used wrist straps whenever I'm doing any big changes in the case. When installing single components (with the exception of the CPU) I don't bother.

You might build a hundred computers without any problems, but that one time when something does break you're gonna wish you wore one.
If the strap was a hundred bucks, I'd understand your argument, but it F-O-U-R bucks! That wont even buy me a good belgian beer.

Connecting the wrist strap to the case if it is unplugged from the wall socket makes little difference to just touching it once in a while, you want something that is properly grounded. A radiator is a very good alternative, as omghfuishkughndal said.

If you decide to just skip the wrist strap, just wear sneakers while assembling and you wont have to worry about the carpet:) 
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June 2, 2010 7:25:45 AM

cobot said:
I fried an old pentium rig while changing the CPU a loong time ago. Now that was quite clumsy and that's the only time I've broken a component. Then again, after that I've always used wrist straps whenever I'm doing any big changes in the case. When installing single components (with the exception of the CPU) I don't bother.

You might build a hundred computers without any problems, but that one time when something does break you're gonna wish you wore one.
If the strap was a hundred bucks, I'd understand your argument, but it F-O-U-R bucks! That wont even buy me a good belgian beer.

Connecting the wrist strap to the case if it is unplugged from the wall socket makes little difference to just touching it once in a while, you want something that is properly grounded. A radiator is a very good alternative, as omghfuishkughndal said.

If you decide to just skip the wrist strap, just wear sneakers while assembling and you wont have to worry about the carpet:) 


u spelly ma nome rong XD
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a c 122 B Homebuilt system
June 3, 2010 7:47:40 AM

Floks said:
Also should I buy one of these to test to see if my outlets are properly grounded?

http://www.amazon.com/Electrical-Receptacle-Outlet-Grou...


I have one of these. They are great for their original purpose. But if you live in the U.S., the electrical code requires properly grounded outlets, so that is generally not a problem. However, I live in Saudi Arabia in a house with mostly U. S. style 120 vac wiring and I discovered that the outlet I was going to use to power my systems was ungrounded.

I simply build on a large anti-static foam sheet.

Comment on anti-static wrist straps: If you were to measure the resistance of the wire, the ohmmeter would read an open circuit. The wire used has an extremely high resistance.
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June 10, 2010 2:11:03 AM

Best answer selected by floks.
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June 10, 2010 5:54:48 PM

Glad threads solved its about time!
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