madclarinet (madclarinet) wrote,

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An easy task... right...

Its that time of year again, the time the PAT testing machines go away to be calibrated. It has to be done each year and its easily dealt with at work. All the various machines go to a single point (the electricians workshop) where they are collected, calibrated and then returned a week or two later. Just before we take them down - we download the data into the PAT database onto a PC. Every year I end up having to 'help' our head technician do this.

So, early today we started this task. All these testers have good old fashioned serial ports on them, the PC does not. Easy enough, we got a USB to Serial cable to deal with that issue. Put where is it... A search later and we can't find it, so we see if we can borrow one of one of the other technicians (there are a few on some of the sports equipment for measuring stuff). Of course - all the biology technicians are out and we can't find the one. The room we know has a couple on some equipment is our next stop... That has a lecture going on so thats a no-no either.

At this point, I think the head technician decided he wasn't going to be beaten - we get in his car and drive to a store (Curry's) - they don't have one but suggest two others. Those two are near each other so we drive to the other side of Derby and try both - neither had one. We then park in Derby and walk to the Maplin and thankfully find one there.

After returning back to work and having a short break, I we proceeded to download the data. Even that didn't go smoothly - several errors occured but we finally prevailed and won through.

So, a task that should have taken about 30 minutes took the best part of 3 hours. I have a meeting this afternoon so I doubt I'll get much else done today.

These things are sent to try us - at least I won't be doing this next year (hopefully).
Tags: pat testing, work
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