What Is The Goofiest Thing You Have Had To Do That Has Actually Worked?

Replacing an analog camera with IP - damaged coax, no way to pull new wire through a sealed ceiling, existing wires strapped up... I think this probably ranks right up there on the goofiness scale.

But hey, it works... flawlessly!

I can sense all the "best practices trumps all" guys twitching in their chairs right now...

That is sick and untwisted. ;)

We had a job in a large computer data center where a newly installed proximity card reader next to a door failed to work. We replaced the reader twice, and eventually the cabling, and it still wouldn't work. We even switched the reader to a different port on the controller, and still nothing.

Somewhere in the process, the installer tried the reader when it was still dangling from the cable rather than screwed to the wall and it worked. After a little experimentation, we found that if we held the reader a few inches to the left or right of its original mounting spot it would work, but not if we held it in the original spot. I had the installer permanently relocate the reader to a new spot about a foot from the door, and it worked fine.

There was nothing in the wall behind the original location, nor was there anything in the immediate vicinity that seemed to be a source of interference. Still a mystery to me.

Haha, I've had this, however, my problem was I mounted two readers back to back and they were interfearing with each other. I couldn't move the reader (without patching the wall), so I went to the hardware store and picked up a roll of metal mesh window screen, folded it several times and shoved it in the cavity between the readers and boom, they both worked. That was goofy.

Installed laser transmitter/reciever combination from a 7 story parking deck to the rooftop of the headquarters across the street. My first one ever. I could not get the transmitter and receiver to line up and send video. I had a monitor on the other roof hooked to the receiver, used binoculars to watch it and move the transmitter. I could not get them lined up like I need to. After several hours, out of frustration, i just slapped it (hard). When it stopped moving (not much) it was perfectly lined up. I took a look across the street, had a beautiful picture on the monitor on the other roof. I tightened the mounting bolts and left. Sheer luck.

"laser transmitter/receiver"

What is model number/brand name, please?


It was years ago, I honestly don't remember.

If there's no Z-station 22/4 around one has to improvise....

Yeah, that experience was why I thought to even try it this time :)

Dare you to slap a cable certifier on that run!

Those certifiers think they are so smart, let's see'em figure that one out...

Just last week I was replacing some old sensormatic PTZ domes (from the 90's) which used a four wire RS-422 loop for PTZ control. Two for transmit, two for receiver. They were being replaced with new American Dynamics PTZ.

Last year some one else had replaced about five of these cameras at the same place, so I checked their wiring, they were using the orange and the yellow from the red/green/orange/yellow four conductor cable sensormatic ran.

I replaced my first camera, with some difficulty before I looked at another one and realised I had my new one set for SensorNet, instead of RS-422. Changed the sip switches on the camera, and it worked fine.

I go to do the next one, did everything the same as the first, only pre-set to RS-422 this time. But nothing. I tried a few power cycles, tried a few re-wires and different PTZ addresses, but nothing. So I take a break, go do a few other cameras (no problems), and then come back to this one and just replace the unit. New unit goes up without a problem.

I figured I had a bad camera, no big deal. I had two more cameras to replace, told the customer we might not be able to do the last one. I go to install the next one and I have the same problem. So this time I look all over the old Sensormatic PTZ and google what ever numbers that resemble a model number, and manage to find what looks like an installation guide. In the guide it indicates Orange and Green are receive +/- and Red/Yellow are transmit +/-. So I change my yellow wire to green and everything works. I wire up the camera I thought was bad, and it also works.

So I had three cameras in total that would only work when wired properly, but there are an additional 6-7 throughout the store all wired wrong, but working a hundred percent. One location where one camera wouldn't work with orange/yellow (Receive +, Transmit -) but a second camera did.

It was very strange...I'm not sure if some one wired something wrong on the distribution block I found in the ceiling (presumably from original sensormatic installation), or if it was just hit and miss. But everything was working so I left it.

I've had to wire quite a few PTZs with USB-to-RS232 adapters, then just running a single shielded 18/2 to the camera (RS232 is electrically compatible with RS422, just using a common ground rather than balanced pairs, so this usually works as long as it doesn't have to go too far). One really weird thing I've come across, though, is that quite often, the PTZ wouldn't respond until I powered off the camera, swapped the TX/RX wires, powered the camera up, then hot-swapped the wires back to their "proper" configuration. After that, everything worked as expected. This seemed to be especially common with older Spectra II's.