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Carmy
04-15-2006, 09:25 AM
How would I put a small generator, one that would power a large house/castle out of action so that it couldn't be repaired quickly?

Medievalist
04-15-2006, 10:00 AM
How would I put a small generator, one that would power a large house/castle out of action so that it couldn't be repaired quickly?

Sugar or water in the fuel tank.

rtilryarms
04-16-2006, 04:31 PM
Some comments:

Be careful about sugar. Modern engines are not prone to damage as is rumored. End-of the line fuel filter prevents damage. Even if you put a lot in all you would need to do is replace the filters.

A large house or a castle has me envisioning a 10,000 sq ft or more floor plan with heavy commercial-grade appliances and whole building capacity. This makes me assume that a minimum 75 KW generator is in use (10,000 sq ft approx) to anything up to 250 KW for a lager mansion. There is no limit but it gets more complex with probable paralleling strategies after that.
*The engine would be diesel.
*The fuel tanks would probably 1,000-gal bladder under the generator.
*Convault stand-alone tanks would be up to 10,000 gallons and can be stacked depending on local environmental codes.
*Locks would protect all fuel sources.

The proper way to disable a generator depends on your characters technical expertise.

If they are geeky, they are more prone to use the chemical solution and pour Baking Soda inside the battery, even if it is maintenance free. It would immediately neutralize the electrolyte and stop the engine in mid-crank.
Rarely does anyone have a spare battery on stand-by trickle charge but if they do, put baking soda in their as well. The stand-by battery would be next to the generator because no one is expecting sabotage.

If you want to get more technical and exotic, let me know but you would have to build up the knowledge of your saboteur (and the reader). There are some ways that I wouldn’t publish. But there are theoretical ways that can be used in novel form without getting too much argument. The battery solution is the safest because most experienced engineers and military would detect it. The other ways are a little more irresponsible to publish.

Be careful with water too as all large commercial generators have Water Separators.

Julie Worth
04-16-2006, 04:37 PM
Some comments:

Be careful about sugar. Modern engines are not prone to damage as is rumored. End-of the line fuel filter prevents damage. Even if you put a lot in all you would need to do is replace the filters.


The thing about sugar is that it dissolves in the gas, so no filter can remove it. It will then foul the spark plugs, and you'd have to remove them and clean them, then drain the gas and replace it (assuming you realized that was the problem). Another way to remove the sugar would be to add water, and then the sugar water would be filtered out (depending on the filter on the generator).

If it's a desiel engine, sugar might not work.

rtilryarms
04-16-2006, 04:57 PM
I missed the first part of my post. I must have deleted it. Dang.

Actually you will find that sugar does not readily disolve in gas. There are different detergents used these days than the early fuels that were susceptible to sugar-toting vandals. Today it takes a whole lot of sugar and still it won't disolve the way it is rumored. Possible, but not as easy as the movies and books say.

Julie Worth
04-16-2006, 05:09 PM
Okay, how about dumping a pint of silver (aluminum flake) paint in the gas? Nah...the filter again. So maybe liquid detergent?

rtilryarms
04-16-2006, 07:56 PM
Julie,

I'll just add that I have expertise in this field. I may be wrong but It's what I do for a living. I am specifically knowledgable in physical plant operations and due diligence.
Either way, it's just my professional opinion and I won't argue it. I know old cars used to get fouled.

Gas being fouled by sugar is possible only with high temperatures and a lot of sugar.
As far as aluminum flakes and liquid detergent, I never researched it. However interesting things can be done with oil gas and detergent.

waylander
04-16-2006, 07:57 PM
Something like liquid paraffin in the fuel would be better as it would completely dissolve and then foul up the injectors with carbon residues. However if the generator has a large fuel tank you would need quite a lot to stop the generator quickly.

rtilryarms
04-16-2006, 08:15 PM
For cars there are a lot of things. Keep in mind that the generator supplying a large house will have a whole lot of fuel.

Also many houses may be supplied by propane or natural gas.

I would just disable the battery. There are cooler more technical ways but it's pretty advanced.

Jamesaritchie
04-16-2006, 09:07 PM
I suppose it depends on how long you want to knock out the generator, and the type/model of generator.

If it's one large enough to require a battery start, then knocking out the battery is usually as easy as draining it/them of power. This can be done very quickly simply by connecting the positive and negative terminals with a wire or length of pipe. It's amazing how fast batteries drain this way.

If all you need is a matter of hours, it's easier to cut the wires at two or three stategic points.

And, of course, huge gas tanks are not easy to repair or replace. Puncture the tank(s), and the thing is out of commission for days, assuming you don't start a major fire, or cause an explosion.
Oh, one thing about sugar and other such additives. Modern filters wil usually stop sugar from doing damage, which matters not at all. As long as sugar is still mixed with the gas, changing filters won't help. You'll still have to drain the tanks and replace the gas, or the new filter will clog, as well. Draining the tanks, cleaning the tanks, and replacing the gas can take several days.and

Leva
04-16-2006, 10:05 PM
For gas or natural gas/propane I'd have my character pack along a spark plug wrench and pull the spark plugs and walk away with them. Alternately, if you want the problem to be not immediately obvious, widen the gap on the spark plugs so they no longer throw a spark and replace them.

However, this would take several minutes to accomplish depending on how tightly the spark plugs are screwed in. Also, as soon as the guy started monkeying around wth the generator the power would go off unless they're operating off a battery bank.

IF it's a propane generator it likely has a valve for refilling the tank that could be jammed open with some sort of homemade device and the propane vented. THis would only work if the castle wasn't downwind, however, as propane does have that distinctive rotten egg smell. Also, there's the boom factor to consider. (Not a huge issue in an open-air environment unless someone walks up with, say, a lit cigarette.) Note that if the environment is HUMID this might not work due to icing up.

For diesel, because diesel's not particularly flammable, a couple of holes (bullet) in the fuel tank would do it if we're talking above ground tank. However, this would likely be noisy. You might just have him remove a couple of strategic wires.

Note in some household applications they actually operate off battery power -- often just a bank of lead acid car batteries -- attached to an inverter. The generator recharges the batteries. I point this out because it means that even if you kill the generator they may have power for several hours to a couple of days depending on the setup.

I'm currently writing to you from a large cabin that was powered in this fashion until the late 90's when they brought grid power into the neighborhood. There was a generator (we're not sure what type) that was wired into a battery bank and the house ran off 12 volt most likely with inverters that would convert the power to 110 household current as needed for certain household appliances.

Also, if they're running off a generator the house likely has non-electric appliances, such as a gas or wood stove and a propane refridgerator, and oil or propane lamps for light. (Or 12 volt fluorescents like you'd find in an RV.)

It's cheaper to have a propane fixture directly producing light than it is to make electricity with the generator and THEN make light with the electricity. My point is, losing power may be a nuisance but it's not that big of a deal if they're properly set up.

If they don't have gravity fed water they may lose water. In a castle, likely they have a rooftop water tank somewhere. People in rural areas stockpile water anyway ... so no showers but it's very likely they have bottled water in a basement or closet somewhere for drinking.


Leva

MadScientistMatt
04-17-2006, 03:10 AM
How would I put a small generator, one that would power a large house/castle out of action so that it couldn't be repaired quickly?

There's a lot of good suggestions here - just thought I'd add some more.

If you don't mind being really blatant about things, you could siphon out some of its fuel, pour it over the machinery and the room, and set it on fire. Re-wiring a burned engine is a royal pain. You might be able to use a candle as a time delay so you could be out of the area before things get too hot.

If I wanted to take out a generator, I'd just find the oil drain plug and open it. Depending on how quickly I wanted it to fail, I could either pull the plug out or leave it in but with oil dripping out slowly. Requires nothing but a single wrench, unless the generator was not running and I wanted things to go undetected until they started, in which case I'd need an oil drain pan and something to carry off the old oil in. Damage? The least it's likely to do is require replacement of all the bearings in the motor, and probably machining the crankshaft. Things can get worse, up to and including having the engine throw a rod and requiring a brand new engine block.

Tornadoboy
04-18-2006, 07:07 AM
If you want a few more exotic ideas how about dumping powered graphite into any circuitry it may have, it conducts like metal and will short everything out, although one doesn't normally find it on the shelf at 7-11.
I hear bleach will rott the heck out of the inside bottom of a fuel tank because it acts as an oxidizer and is heavier than the fuel. Also I've heard that adding the resin component that comes with fiberglass repair kits to oil ruins it's lubrication abilities and will totally multilate an engine.
Us computer techs have to know these things after all :D

Carmy
04-20-2006, 08:57 AM
Wonderful suggestions. Thank you for responding.

Here's the situation:

My heroine is being chased through an old house/mansion and finds herself in the generator room. The generator runs a refrigerator and a stove, but outside the house it powers an electrically charged gate. She needs to cut the power to the gate. If necessary, I can give her some knowledge of generators but I'd rather not do that. She is not technically inclined but resourceful.

Whatever she does, she has to do it in a way that isn't noticeable immediately as the bad guy catches her in the generator room. All she has with her is a small steak knife and a computer disk.

Any suggestions?

rtilryarms ~ If you know of a way you don't want to be made public, feel free to leave a message for me.

rtilryarms
04-20-2006, 04:31 PM
Hmm. Old house/mansion. OK lets assume it's an old generator too. Very little technical knowledge? Only a steak knife and a computer disk.
CD probably.

I will be working on my generators tomorrow (weekly runs). While I'm running them I'll pretend that I am in that situation. The oldest one I worked on was built in the 60's but that should do.

You may have to give her a little technical tidbit elswhere in the story.

I'll see if I can come up with a realistic scenario.

MadScientistMatt
04-20-2006, 07:09 PM
Ok, no time to carefully, methodically start sabotaging the generator. The simplest thing may just be to go and start slicing through any wires she can find. If she hits 12 volt wires, this isn't likely to be much of a shock - 120 volt household wiring is another story.

Another sabotage possibility just occurred to me. There may be a jerry can of fuel in a generator room, if the generator runs on a liquid fuel and not propane. Take off the air cleaner - it's held on with a wingnut in many cases, no tools required - and pour the fuel right down the hole you find under it. Dumping a lot of liquid straight into an engine all at once will hydrolock it - the piston tries to compress a chamber full of incompressible liquid rather than air. Usually this will cause some pretty serious damage when the piston slams to a sudden stop.

I'm not sure if a remote house is likely to have a generator-powered electric stove. Much simpler and a lot more efficient to burn fuel in the stove directly. Old gas stoves are often purely mechanical with no electronics whatsoever. Newer ones may have electric ignition or possibly electric thermostats.

rtilryarms
04-20-2006, 11:07 PM
I'm pretty sure that even old generators utilize 12vdc so there wouldn’t be a problem there except the circuit to the battery charger, that would be 120V. After the engine is running though, the engine would be self-sustaining off the alternator or generator itself. tha is a consideration.

That was exactly my first thought. I was going to put the CD over the carburetor. But the size of this generator indicates strongly that it will be a diesel which uses direct fuel injection. If it is an old genset it won’t even have spark plugs to damage as pre-ignition is a modern technology upgrade.

The Author could stipulate that the fuel source is gasoline especially if it powers only select circuits. Then it would be an excellent idea that would even occur to the protagonist – surely she / he has had occasion to run into similar under-the-hood problems in her / his car.

In your experience, what are the possibilities of jamming the governor? Can it be done so it won’t be noticed right away?

All my other solutions require a bit of technical knowledge.

But, Carmy, I am sending you a PM. I got a good idea you can use.

Carmy
04-22-2006, 08:19 AM
Wonderful suggestions. If only I were technically inclined.

Many thanks rtilryarms. I got your message and I've replied.

MadScientistMatt ~ Would she be able to identify the 120V wire/cable? Would it be a different colour or size? Would there be a grounding/earth wire? She's pregnant so I can't risk a massive jolt to her.

I forgot to mention ~ This section takes place in the UK in 1989, so the disk would be a plastic one not a CD. I'd love to destroy it via the generator to add some pathos.

From the time she disables the generator to when she reaches the gate ranges about 45 minutes but I can alter the time because of the action that goes on in between.

Thank you again for being so helpful.

Carmy

Spider
04-22-2006, 08:59 AM
I am not an expert, but the best method is to keep it simple. Every electrical circuit will be fused in the room where the electricity is generated. If power is off, just remove fuses and throw them away or hide them. If there are several, odds are replacements will not be available for all circuits. If the power is on, it only requires throwing a single lever to turn it off. Pulling loose any wires going to the diesel would be a diversion and taske some time to fix, especially if some wires were cut with the steak knife. If ignition system that starts generator diesel has a key system to lock it, grabbing those and tossing or hiding them would cause some consternation.

triceretops
04-22-2006, 09:12 AM
Just take a hot lead and short it to ground--burning the armature. Or unscrew a plug and dump bee bees or small nuts and screws in the cylinder--instant piston seisure.

Tri

Leva
04-22-2006, 09:52 PM
Anyone who thinks 12 volt dc won't knock your socks off has never worked on cars much. ;) Depending on the amperage it can be a heck of a shock.

The stove would be gas or wood. I can't imagine anyone using an electric stove who's on a generator. Gas is far more convenient, doesn't heat the kitchen up nearly as much, and is much easier to work with than a wood stove -- however, wood's cheaper to run. (Though the wood stoves themselves often run a couple of grand US.)

The refridgerator is highly likely to operate off of propane, using an ammonia cycle. In many cases propane fridges are taken out of old RVs and are smaller than the fridges you're used to in a modern kitchen. Electric fridges are a huge draw of electricity. However, you will see homesteaders who aren't on a grid using an electric fridge -- if they don't have a springhouse or cold rootcellar for keeping things cold.

In this scenario, the easiest way for her to knock out the generator would be to set fire to it. Throw some gasoline over it and light a match.

Though -- if I were designing an electric security fence I'd have it operate off a bank of batteries, as I mentioned before. An electric fence isn't going to draw much power unless it's grounded somewhere. Until it grounds -- as in, someone touches it -- it's just a potential circuit. No power going through it. Solves the problem of "the generator's out and so the fence is out' -- generators break down all the time. And plus, you wouldn't need to have the generator running all the time, just when the batteries needed to be recharged. Kinda pointless to waste a bunch of fuel operating something that doesn't even draw power until someone touches it.

Leva

rtilryarms
04-23-2006, 08:13 AM
The electric gate kind of negates my suggestions via PM so I am back on here. Almost any of the ideas will work with some research. And yes 12 volts hurts like the dickens if you become the appliance in the circuit. Depending on your conductivity, it could just buzz you or you could become Post Toasties.

Billytwice
04-24-2006, 06:23 AM
Instant permanent damage? I'd go for water down the air filter, It did a good job of killing my mates diesel BMW when he drove it through a puddle some years ago.
If it's in the UK don't forget the voltage would be 240 not 120 volts. If you want to know how to blow fuses remotely from ring main socket outlets or standard bayonet light bulb fittings, please PM me for the details.
(Handy if your heroine wants to put out the lights and/or security cameras without finding the generator room.)

Julie Worth
04-24-2006, 06:38 AM
LOL. All this brainpower, and still it runs! In my experience, it's almost impossible to get an engine to start, but look at it cross-eyed, and it stops.

Billytwice
04-24-2006, 06:40 AM
but it's very likely they have bottled water in a basement or closet somewhere for drinking.


Leva

If there is a battery of cells present, they would be in a separate room to prevent sparks from the generator field coils igniting the gasses given off by the cells as they charge.
However there would be 3 sources of water in a battery room.
1 A sink and tap for washing your hands.
2. Bottles of distilled water to top up the cells
3. Distilled water in a first aid cabinet to swill off spilt battery acid in the event of an accident. Especially acid to the eyes.

Carmy
04-24-2006, 07:26 AM
Wonderful suggestions everyone. Thanks. I truly appreciate the way you're trying to help me.

No electric lights are used in the house, just candles so there wouldn't be a warning to the bad guys that she's fiddled with the generator.

She's unlikely to find any water around, but I suppose she could urinate if she can climb above the generator. LOL And she doesn't have time to check around for a room with batteries because she's being hunted and she's caught as soon as she disables the generator.

Using the knife to cut the wires seems to be the best option. How can she cut the wires without toasting herself? I haven't described the floor in the generator room but it's on ground level so would probably be wood. If I add a rubber mat of some kind, would that save her? Would it ground her enough so that the jolt isn't too severe? Is it feabile that the owner would place a rubber mat there to save himself from any shocks?

If that would work, the jolt could make her drop the disk and it could become damaged that way or melted if it happens to land on the bare floor or hits a live wire. The jolt could make her cry out, and be the reason she's caught.

Carmy

rtilryarms
04-24-2006, 02:08 PM
LOL. All this brainpower, and still it runs! In my experience, it's almost impossible to get an engine to start, but look at it cross-eyed, and it stops.



LOL!

Dulvarian_Eldritch
04-24-2006, 07:31 PM
On an amusing note, I am actually an electrician. The end of this tells why I would do this, but I would take a container of liquid and throw it into the distribution box.

Lets see here, there are two types of generators, Alternating Current (AC) and Direct Current (DC). AC generators are typically smaller than a DC machine with an identical rating. As previously pointed out, the AC voltage and frequency is different in countries from the US.

It is not the voltage that kills, it is the current. Here is the little equation that relates current(I), voltage(V), and resistance(R). I=V/R. The 'standard' worst case scenario for a person's resistance is about 300 Ohms (resistance unit), which leads to this discussion:

1 mA (.001 Amps) can be felt by the body. 10mA causes muscle contraction. 100mA across the heart for one second can cause death. By that standard, 30v can cause death if the stars align just right. With just dry rubber soled shoes on, your resistance to ground should be somewhere above 1 Megohm (1,000,000 ohms). Touching a single wire, lead, terminal, etc without touching anything else metal should allow you to touch something without being the path to ground and not get shocked.

Ok, so the danger of it established, we should be looking at some type of 240v AC generator, at I believe 50Hz. On that note, I know that the largest danger from electrical shock in the US is that 60hz is the frequency that your heartbeat nerve impulse operates at. The two (your nerve impulse and the shock) don't get along very well, and it can result in death up to several days later. I don't think that 50Hz has that issue, but I'm not positive.

Could your heroinne slice a wire? Sure, if it was in a control section, which is likely under a low voltage or current. Could she tell which was control and what was main output cables? Not sure. The big ones that plug into the wall, outlet, fuse box, etc. would be the main candidate for the output. Cutting wires under load causes wierd things to happen, and I do not recommend anyone ever trying them. Most likely, the person who did it would be scared out of thier wits, high possibility for injury.

Stopping the generator would most likely reduce or eliminate dangerous voltages on the machine. Cutting cables then would be more feasible. In a dark, not very well lit room, I would be impressed if I could find a way to get the thing to shut off in the first place. Would I rely on my personal expertise to help me find a wire that I thought I could cut? Maybe if I had ten or fifteen minutes to pull covers off, look inside them for schematics. If the room was brightly lit and I had the time, I would look for printed instructions on the machine or an instruction manual. Upon locating the control section in the manual, I would have a smoke and coffee break and calmly plan the method of destruction.

What would I do, that would disable the generator, and keep my fingers safe and non-charred with just a few moments and no time or light? Put a large quantity of pretty much any kind of liquid into the distribution box or the generator end of the machine. It causes ridiculous amounts of current to flow out of the machine, which could a) permanently damage the machine b) trip off safety features on the generator or c) make a really pretty light show and d) all of the above.

The best part of the distribution box thing is that it causes a lot of secondary problems. For instance the guy trying to start it back up is kneeling in a bit of water when he fires it up... It will cause the exact same scenario to exist every time that you do start the thing back up. You have a direct short to ground, or a phase to phase short, and the machine trips again, possible electrocutions, etc.

Did that help? My expertise is with large, industrial size electrical equipment, but I can try to answer anything (key word being try).

Leva
04-24-2006, 09:47 PM
Few people use candles except in a temporary emergency, FYI. Candles are dangerous, messy, and shed very little useable light, and blow out if there's a draft.

If they're in a rustic setting they're likely using oil lamps or propane. Some folks also use those solar-recharged yard lights at night; I've got neighbors who have no power to their house. Because they have kids, they use the solar lights. They're dim but useable, about like a night light.

Propane would be my light of choice in a situation where kids aren't a concern, having used both oil lamps and candles. Propane is brighter, cheaper, you can either plumb the house for gaslight or use camping-type propane lanterns. The latter type throws a light as bright as an electric bulb, is arguably less dangerous than an oil lamp (particularly if hung up where a cat *grin* can't knock it over) and you can get auto-ignition camping lanterns that light using a battery. Some also have the handy feature of shutting off if tipped over! They do have a few drawbacks including a need to regularly replace the mantles and there's that annoying hissing noise they make -- and the occasional aroma of flaming bug -- but overall they're the best choice. Just my opinion, others will have differing opinions.

High-efficiency fluorescents would be a possibility also. They'd be much safer and much more "normal" to modern folk than lamps, lanterns, or candles.

At any rate, that's my input on lighting.

Leva


Wonderful suggestions everyone. Thanks. I truly appreciate the way you're trying to help me.

No electric lights are used in the house, just candles so there wouldn't be a warning to the bad guys that she's fiddled with the generator.

She's unlikely to find any water around, but I suppose she could urinate if she can climb above the generator. LOL And she doesn't have time to check around for a room with batteries because she's being hunted and she's caught as soon as she disables the generator.

Using the knife to cut the wires seems to be the best option. How can she cut the wires without toasting herself? I haven't described the floor in the generator room but it's on ground level so would probably be wood. If I add a rubber mat of some kind, would that save her? Would it ground her enough so that the jolt isn't too severe? Is it feabile that the owner would place a rubber mat there to save himself from any shocks?

If that would work, the jolt could make her drop the disk and it could become damaged that way or melted if it happens to land on the bare floor or hits a live wire. The jolt could make her cry out, and be the reason she's caught.

Carmy

jst5150
04-24-2006, 10:11 PM
If you're not technologically oriented, and you wanted some drama, then toss a secondary character into the works (perhaps the "annoying comic sidekick" or the "overly smart best friend"). There'd be enough spatter, parts and breakage that not even MacGyver would mess with it.

The sledge hammer is an old friend, too.

mysteryhost
04-25-2006, 12:13 AM
It sounds like the old castle or mansion is not primarily powered by electricity. If that is the case the generator would be very small and would probably be gas. The way it is presented sounds like there are few conveniences requiring electric, the gate being the principle purpose. The hydrolocking would be the best and easiest solution.

Carmy
04-26-2006, 07:28 AM
Leva ~ Unfortunately, using electricity for lighting is not an option. The fact that the gate is electrified is a suprise as there is no other indication that there is electricity in the area.

jst5150 ~ At this stage of the game, chapter 30, it's too late to introduce a new character and everyone else is scattered, good and bad, but the bad guys know she's escaped from the room they were using to hold her. They're not far behind, searching room by room. She has about 5 or 6 minutes at most. If nothing else works, I could have a minor bad character find her and have her throw him at the genrator.

Dulvarian Eldritch ~ Thank you so much.

I can't risk any muscle contractions as she is pregnant. However, she is wearing rubber-soled trainers (sneakers) and I can produce a rubber mat which she would probably trip over on her way in. If it's a small generator, is there a way she could fall against it and thereby knock the cover off? How many covers would there be? (The guy who owns the house isn't technically inclined either, so the cover could be lose or even off.) If need be, I can make the cooker gas to reduce the need for a super duper generator. I don't know if refrigerators can be run on gas, though. If they are, I can leave them off the generator, too.

How do I stop the generator so that I can cut the wires? It isn't connected to a mains service but is self-contained.

Touching a single wire, lead, terminal, etc without touching anything else metal should allow you to touch something without being the path to ground and not get shocked.

That seems a possible solution. If she slashes the wires with a wooden-handled steak knife while standing on the rubber mat, does she stand a chance of coming out of it intact and still pregnant?

I guess urinating in the distribution box isn't an option. LOL At worst, when the falls over the mat she could fetch up against a bottle of distilled water sitting at the side of the generator.

Does any of this sound feasible?

Once again, I truly appreciated all the help I'm being offered.

Carmy

Dulvarian_Eldritch
04-26-2006, 09:42 PM
This sounds really silly, but there is a reason that I opted for the glass of water in the distribution box.

a) It doesn't take a lot of technical genius to find it
b) I know it'll work, cause I did it.

In short: I was about 2 1/2 years old and tried to unplug my nightlight. My fingers touched the prongs and I got 'burned'. I went to the bathroom and got a glass of water and threw it on the outlet. It popped: the breaker to the room, the main breaker in the box, and the cutoff breaker outside. My dad tells me he was furious because he had no idea how I didn't get electrocuted to death, and it took about 2 hours for all the water to dry out.

As for the brevity, Tylox is kicking my butt right now.

I think a glass of water (bottle of water? sports drink?) would be easier to come by than a sidekick to come by. If I am not mistaken, 20 years ago, glass bottles were a norm. A desperate throw against the open door of the panel might be enough to shatter the bottle and spread the contents inside, perhaps as she is found and is trying to hit her attacker, who then gets electrocuted or something...

Carmy
04-27-2006, 08:28 AM
LOL Dulvarian Eldrich - I guess you're lucky to be alive.

A friend of mine smelled and saw smoke coming from her fuse box so she chucked a bucket of water at it. I won't tell you what the firemen said when they got there!

Okay, I'm going to have her trip over a rubber mat as she enters the generator room. She falls against the generator and the cover flies off. She falls alongside a bucket of water. (I don't suppose a bucket of sand would work as well, would it?) She's not totally dumb, so she chucks the water into the generator or over it before she is found.

Do you figure that would be feasible and acceptable to most readers? I figure my readers would mostly be women. I'm not putting women down because I'm pretty much a DIY person and can fix just about everything, but I wouldn't mess with electricity.

Oh lordy, I hope that scenario works.

Thank you so much for your help.

Pam

Carmy
05-01-2006, 07:19 AM
I hear no objections so I'm going to go with that scenario and hope readers buy it.

Carmy

Kentuk
11-26-2006, 07:44 AM
Underwear in the air intake or remove the battery cables.

Carmy
11-27-2006, 09:24 PM
Thanks Kentuk. Those suggestions sound so simple, but it's often the way -- the simple is overlooked.

Hmmm ... I must look at real live generators to see where the air intake is and where I would find the cables. My MC is in a dark room and working by touch. She isn't technically inclined and might be scared of pulling free any cables she feels.

How long would it take for the generator to shut down if she blocks the air intake? She has over an hour before she needs an electrified gate to be disabled.

Kentuk
11-28-2006, 07:12 AM
Thanks Kentuk. Those suggestions sound so simple, but it's often the way -- the simple is overlooked.

How long would it take for the generator to shut down if she blocks the air intake? She has over an hour before she needs an electrified gate to be disabled.

Almost immediately, in the dark it would be easier to find the battery and yank like crazy. A single battery isn't dangerous, batteries that are linked together are.

Carmy
11-28-2006, 09:11 AM
Many thanks, Kentuk. I'm going to go with yanking the cables. When she is discovered, in dim light, it will be less noticeable than the messy pickling vinegar I was going to use.