I received a call from another friend this evening and I am hoping you can help. Malcolm rang me to ask the following, he has a heart condition which the medical profession have been struggling to diagnose for the last year but they have finally sorted it and he is to be fitted with a pacemaker in the next six weeks. He cannot return to his old job, body repair shop, because electric welding equipment will play havoc with the pacemaker but his question is would a Magneto cause the same problem. Gentlemen this is a serious question to which I would expect a serious answer please.
Generally, no as the radiated field is very low for a magneto, but if he wanted to be sure, and have protection against accidentally getting too close, he could fit a screened lead and plug to the engine.
What about all the other things he could come into contact with in normal life such as car ignition systems, gas cooker lighters, cigarette lighters and so on?
I think pacemakers are better able to cope nowadays, but he would have to follow his Doctor's advice.
-- Peter & Rita Forbes Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bloke asks a question he should have asked the consultant.
Bloke asks this question on usenet.
Despite this, first answer is me, answer is correct and answer is backed up by citation, in this case the British Medical Journal, with link provided.
Next bloke comes along, discounts what some other usenet poster has said, doesn't bother to read link, gives wrong answer.
I quote, from the link given
"...Most reported cases have been traced to faults in electric motors in which a capacitor fails to suppress sparking; examples are vacuum cleaners, deep freezers, refrigerators, electric mixers, electric razors, small power tools, and even battery-operated electric razors. The dynamo or alternator on motor cycles, lawn mowers, outboard engines, and even motor cars may inhibit a pacemaker if the patient is within one metre of the engine. Arc welding and fairground "dodgem cars" generate high levels of interference that may cause triggered..."
no assumption is made that said HT leads are anything other than screened.
...WITHIN ONE METRE OF THE ENGINE...
so perhaps if the guy has EHT insulating arms that are two metres long he can work on a magneto safely....
I know, far easier to subscribe to the theory that Fawkes is a crusty bastard followed around by his own troup of trolls and therefore everything he says is wrong.
He has asked his doctor and the only response he got was when asked what he did for a job, welder in body shop, so he went home and then started thinking hence my question. Its easy for you all to make comments but you have to remember that he is in a slight state of shock at moment, never smoked doesn't drink and now in his fifties he has a heart that at the moment could stop with no warning. A lot to take in a very short time. Thanks for your help.
"campingstoveman" wrote in message news: email@example.com... : He has asked his doctor and the only response he got was when asked what he : did for a job, welder in body shop, so he went home and then started : thinking hence my question. : Its easy for you all to make comments but you have to remember that he is in : a slight state of shock at moment, never smoked doesn't drink and now in his : fifties he has a heart that at the moment could stop with no warning. A lot : to take in a very short time. Thanks for your help. :
Why doesn't he ask his doctor a direct question, my point is, if it's only actually welding that would be a problem that doesn't stop him working in a vehicle body shop never mind 'playing' with stationary engines, on the other hand if just being near arc welding might kill him....
Regards, Jerry (also having spent more years than I wish to remember in vehicle body shops).
Which is one reason why it it is generally advisable to have someone else with you on such occasions.
Here is the current advice from NHS Direct:-
Note particularly that it refers to direct contact with ignition systems so just being near an engine shouldn't be a problem. But the bottom line really is talk to the experts - I'm sure there will be a follow-up appointment and if the right questions are asked, the right answers will emerge.
One thing that has just occurred to me in a stationary engine context is the possibility of a belt from the HT lead. Flywheel effect has caught me out once or twice, being used to IC engines that stop immediately you turn off the ignition.
Interesting that a serious query has found us two people who lurk & obviously have little to do in their lives....
Martin, I'm sorry about your friend. To say he's in a state of shock (no pun intended) must be a major understatement. I'm mindfull of what others have said but I would look to the consequencies (boring risk assessment time I'm afraid). If the ignition system causes a problem, what happens? If the pacemaker restarts once the wearer is removed from the effect, be that out of range or contact, then having someone with them provides a rescue service. However, if the effect is to burn out the pace maker, the result is death. The first is dangerous, the second doesn't bear thinking about. Unless the effect is a simple and reversible warning, don't risk it. Personally, you wouldn't get me anywhere near an unsheilded ignition system if I face such a risk.