My Qualifications

With that said, you probably want to know just who this guy is that's offering to give free electrical advice.

Most kids grew up playing with toy cars and such. I was a little different. I grew up playing with tools. In fact I seem to come from an entire batch destined for the electrical trade. My dad was an electrical contractor. My brother, a long time electrician is now a city electrical inspector. I started going to jobs with my dad almost as soon as I could walk, and started helping him with some of the tasks soon after. At least I thought I was helping, but now that I have kids of my own, I wonder how much I was really "helping". When people ask me how long I have been an electrician, I sometimes reflect on this and reply "my entire life".

I have to say I never really wanted to be an electrician while I was growing up, it was just something I had to do at the time. I wanted to get out of town, do something on my own, so I went and joined the United States Air Force. I did get out of town, had a load of fun, and learned some valuable life-skills. Ultimately, though, I still ended up back in my hometown, as an electrician. You could say that formally I have been an electrician since I separated from the USAF and entered the electrical apprenticeship program in Salem Oregon in 1993. I worked my way through apprenticeship with various shops gaining an invaluable store of knowledge. After I passed the Oregon State journeyman electrician exam, and received my license, I worked for a few different local electrical contractors gaining yet more experience and earned enough hours to qualify for a chance to take the Oregon State General Supervising Electrician exam, which I passed. Once again, after awhile I took yet another Oregon State test, the A-level Electrical Inspector Certification test, which I also passed.

By this time, I had worked many years as an electrician, supervisor, and even tried my hand at being an electrical contractor for a while. Naturally the next step in my career was to be an electrical inspector. I accepted a job first as a county electrical inspector, then on to my current position as a State of Oregon Electrical Inspector where I have enjoyed several years of serving, helping, and protecting the public of my state. In my immature state of mind, I thought when I became an electrical inspector I was going to "go nail all those home-owners that don't have a clue what they are doing". However, not long after I started my new job, I realized that homeowners weren't just trying to be scabs and take work away from us electricians; they are just regular people trying to save a little money. I learned to appreciate homeowners as people that really wanted to do the job correctly; they just didn't always have the knowledge to do so.

I have grown tired of watching well-intended people waste their hard earned money on useless books from the local hardware or home improvement store. Some author with little or no technical experience, just good research and writing skills has written almost all of these books. On top of that, by the time those books are published, a fair amount of their contents is out-dated. Our National Electrical Code is updated and changes are made every three years! That's something licensed electricians have to keep up on, and take classes for. With the huge task of writing, editing, publishing, and distribution, how could these books ever keep up-to-date?

It was then that I had an epiphany! Using the World Wide Web, I could share my experience and knowledge with whomever may wish to use it. Being electronic in nature, my content would be easily updated when the need be, and instantly published and available. So here we are.

    I still hope I'm not an electrician when I grow up!