L&M's Photo - Graphics & Crafts Website

photo restoration - cross stitch - glass painting - humor - funny articles - computer graphics

Not always a model TV engineer apprentice but one who found a happy niche in life.

disabled - disability - repair damaged photograph - craftwork - crafts - coloring photographs

Cross stitch & Crafts

bullet Cross stitch examples-1

bullet Cross stitch examples-2

bullet Cross stitch/other crafts

bullet Glass painting

bullet Crafts on display-1

bullet Crafts on display-2

Photo & Graphics

bullet Restored photos-1

bullet Restored photos-2

bullet Old soldier photos

bullet How to colour photos

bullet How to repair photos

bullet Optimising images

bullet Computer pictures-1

bullet Computer pictures-2

bullet Computer pictures-3

bullet Computer pictures-4

bullet Computer pictures-5


bullet Budgie

bullet Cannibal

bullet Cheque card

bullet Hints - Hoaxes

bullet Ifology

bullet More humour

bullet Even more humour

bullet Sunnyspecs

bullet Tents

bullet The Tower


bullet Career to craftwork

bullet Carers Lot

bullet Computer addict


bullet TV trade 1960 - 80

bullet Dog tales

bullet The apprentice

Mountain Biking

bullet Visit the 'Over the Hill Off-Road Cycling.Club' website.

Holidays - Travel

bullet Bahrain

bullet Germany

bullet Hawaii

bullet Jersey

bullet Spain

Other sites

for sites covering:-

The Royal Air Force - Gliding - Disability - Greyhounds - Online quizzes - Web site design...

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The learning curve

On my second day as an apprentice the boss gave me the supposedly harmless task of dusting out the back of a TV. He fixed me up with vacuum cleaner and a dry 1" paintbrush and went off to see to something else. I plugged the vacuum cleaner into the nearest power point and made a start. The vacuum seemed in need of replacement. It just didn't seem to run up to speed and couldn't have sucked the skin off a rice pudding. I carried on doing the best I could. Who was I to complain. Pretty soon a strange smell pervaded the air. I had a look round and noticed with interest a pool of dense grey smoke coming out of a box at the back of the bench. It was a kind of heavy smoke which sort of crept across the bench top and then fell onto the floor.

"Hello" I shouted hoping someone might hear "He-lp yeah?" The boss came in, quickly sized up the situation and unplugged the vacuum cleaner. I'd plugged it into what's known as an isolating transformer. It's a safety thing designed to run TVs under repair conditions and maybe a soldering iron as well. They only have limited current capabilities and I'd certainly exceeded it by using it to run a 1000 watt vacuum cleaner. The expensive transformer was a write off and the smell lasted for days. It could have been worse I suppose. Might have lost the bench...or even the whole workshop! Well...nobody told me I shouldn't plug it in there did they, but what a good start to a new job!


Workshop safety standards weren't as strict as they are today. The bench tops rested on Dexion (a sort of angle iron with holes in). It was pretty convenient for hanging hot soldering irons on. I lost many a pair of trousers because of this. I'd go up to see what sort of fault was being worked on by one of the engineers. A hot feeling around the thigh accompanied by a burning smell meant that his soldering iron was hanging unnoticed on the Dexion so ruining yet another pair of trousers. In the end my Mother said that she couldn't help out with the cost anymore, so patches were the only answer. All of my trousers ultimately had patches on, usually somewhere between the fly and trouser pocket.

That wasn't the only trouble that the Dexion benches caused. The bench top and therefore the Dexion was roughly at the height of the male naughty bits. This meant that if an electric shock was received the spark went in through the finger and headed for the nearest path to earth. In this case that meant out through the 'male anatomy' to the Dexion. I think this is where Disco dancing had it's origins.


Precision wire cutters aren't cheap. When changing a TV on/off switch I quickly destroyed the boss's ones by cutting through the mains lead while it was still plugged into the mains. With a medium to loud bang and a few sparks, two neat little 'U' shapes were melted into the blades. Mains plug fuses weren't usual back then so not only did it ruin the cutters but we had the job of mending the customers house fuses as well. Saying sorry seemed so inadequate. However, justice was served a few weeks later when I did the same thing again, but this time the cutters were mine. It was the last time this was to happen to me. Ruining the boss's cutters was OK, but ruining mine really pressed the lesson home. In years to come I would sometimes see other engineers' wire cutters with two neat 'U' shapes melted into the blades.

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