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Tech: PAT testing

oggie 27 Sep 11 - 05:52 PM
bruceCMR 27 Sep 11 - 06:07 PM
Bernard 27 Sep 11 - 07:11 PM
Howard Jones 27 Sep 11 - 07:12 PM
Will Fly 28 Sep 11 - 04:13 AM
GUEST,spudsey 28 Sep 11 - 09:43 AM
Will Fly 28 Sep 11 - 09:54 AM
GUEST,spudsey 28 Sep 11 - 10:25 AM
Will Fly 28 Sep 11 - 10:31 AM
Bernard 28 Sep 11 - 01:15 PM
Howard Jones 28 Sep 11 - 02:32 PM
GUEST,John J notaguest 28 Sep 11 - 02:40 PM
John J 28 Sep 11 - 02:42 PM
Bonzo3legs 28 Sep 11 - 04:28 PM
Bernard 29 Sep 11 - 07:23 AM
GUEST,The Stage Tech 29 Sep 11 - 09:01 AM
stallion 29 Sep 11 - 04:47 PM
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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: oggie
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 05:52 PM

If your equipment is under a year old then you don't need usually need the PAT test but must be able to show the receipt/invoice for that piece of equipment.

Over the years I have seen so many dodgy cables, plugs and fuses on group equipment that if I were running an event I would want to see test certificates as well! I also think that as soon as exceptions are made for enthusiastic local bands just doing it for fun then someone else will use that to run a coach and horses through it.

As a market and event trader I just take it as read that in March every year all my lights and equipment get PAT tested. It's just another cost and at least I can right it off as an expense.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: bruceCMR
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 06:07 PM

> Where I work, any equipment less than a year old does not require testing.

A common practice, and probably the daftest one in this whole PAT circus. As part of my "day job" I am responsible for commissioning the testing of over 10,000 items regularly.

Very few items fail. The majority of items that fail would have failed "out of the box" - the fault was a manufacturing defect, not a fault that was introduced during use.

If you're treating PAT seriously, rather than just a box-ticking exercise, then testing of new items is pretty much essential.


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Bernard
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 07:11 PM

Quite so - and not just at the cheaper end of the market, either.

We always test new equipment before it is put into service - and it's surprising how often poorly thought out packaging causes damage.


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Howard Jones
Date: 27 Sep 11 - 07:12 PM

Spudsey, the situation you describe throws up an interesting anomaly. The regulations apply to the use of electrical equipment at work, so if you are performing on a truly amateur, unpaid basis then it could be argued that you are not "at work" and therefore don't need PAT tests. I'm not a lawyer, and you'd have to get a qualified opinion on that.

Nevertheless, a venue may still want to know that electrical equipment brought onto their premises is safe, so you may well be asked for it. From the venue's point of view, the safety issue exists regardless of whether the event is for a "good cause". However, as you've found, there are plenty of venues which take a more relaxed view.


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Will Fly
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 04:13 AM

The ceilidh band that I play in does a range of gigs, from high-end, well-paid gigs to freebies for charity. What cuts across it all is this one fact:

The venue may ask us to produce evidence of PAT testing and can refuse permission to play if we don't have it. Simple, eh?

No argument - whether it's "work" or "fun" or whatever, the venue has its rules. If we want to play there, we observe them. So it's worth getting it done. Quite apart from that, we make every effort to make sure our gear is safe. PAT testing is an offshoot of that - and just another part of being in an organised band.


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: GUEST,spudsey
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 09:43 AM

So let's get this right -

For business oriented busy working pro commercial bands earning comfortably over a certain threshold
the annual cost burden of PAT testing is entirely Tax Deductible ????


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Will Fly
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 09:54 AM

I wouldn't know, spudsey - it's been a long time since I've been in a "business oriented busy working pro commercial bands earning comfortably over a certain threshold"! But when I was, all sorts of things were tax-deductible - petrol for gigs and rehearsals, car servicing, equipment maintenance (no PAT testing in those days, though), dress cleaning, strings, telephone calls, etc.

If you go to play at a gig for no fee - unless you're whisked there by an ethereal transporter and all your gear is provided - then you're playing at a loss in any case!

All I'm saying is that you have a choice - if you don't want the costs and inconvenience of PAT tests, then don't incur them by all means - and choose venues which don't ask for such things. :-)


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: GUEST,spudsey
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 10:25 AM

sigh... call us old naive idealistic hippies

but there's plenty enough of us who grew up playing in the halcyon days of musicians co-ops and collectives and free festivals
and remember the music trade paper ads mantra "Band members wanted - no bread heads" !!!!


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Will Fly
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 10:31 AM

When I played in a jug band at the Redan pub in London in the late '60s, we each got £2 and a free pint.

them were't days...


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Bernard
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 01:15 PM

Yup - and in today's money that would be around £100.00 apiece...!


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Howard Jones
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 02:32 PM

"working over a certain threshold" doesn't come into it. If you're being payed to play music, then you must declare it for tax. Since most ceilidh band musicians either have day jobs or a pension, the chances are your income from that will bring you over the tax threshold, in which case anything you may earn from music will be taxable at your marginal rate. On the other hand you can offset your expenses - including the cost of PAT testing - so you may end up not having to pay any tax on your income from music.


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: GUEST,John J notaguest
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 02:40 PM

PAT Testing is a legitimate business expense and as such comes off the profit the band generates.

Less profit = less tax payable.

JJ


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: John J
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 02:42 PM

Ah that's better - see, I AM a member!

JJ


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 28 Sep 11 - 04:28 PM

Times have changed, I can remember twisting the leads of 2 x Vox AC30 and a 50 watt Linear amps all together and stuffing them into a 15 amp socket in a church hall with match sticks back in 1963 - all worked perfectly!!


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: Bernard
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 07:23 AM

It's surprising we survived, innit?! Mind you, some of us didn't...


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: GUEST,The Stage Tech
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 09:01 AM

Hi Bonzo3legs

"I can remember twisting the leads of 2 x Vox AC30 and a 50 watt Linear amps all together and stuffing them into a 15 amp socket in a church hall with match sticks"

Ah ha! so you're the guy that got us all saddled with PAT!

I'd be interested to know though if the church hall still standing.

But on a more seious note...

I didn't start until about '75, and looking back I don't know how we got away with what we did in those days.

Sad part is I can think of four of my contemporaries who suffered the sort of injuries that meant they never worked again, and in two cases never walked again without a stick.

OK, sometimes we might feel Health and Safety to be burdensome, but with production becoming bigger, heavier, and ever more power hungry
it is also increasingly necessary. The last time I counted there were something like 27 separate pieces of legislation relating to safety on stages. (Multi hazard areas of work)

So don't even think of getting up a ladder to focus the bloody lights.

ST


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Subject: RE: Tech: PAT testing
From: stallion
Date: 29 Sep 11 - 04:47 PM

£1.50 an item is very cheap, the most I have managed to test in one day is seventy items that is going flat out, that is £95 Quid when my charging out rate is £25/Hr . I spent £1700 last year on courses and exams to enable me to trade, insurance is £400 a year, fees to the requisite trade associations and inspections £700 a year then there are phones vans stationary etc etc etc. I make a living not a fortune! As to whether it is a scam or not no more a scam than when i represented myself in court , which I won, I was not allowed to claim costs, even though I had lost at least two weeks work gathering evidence, presenting the documents and appearing in court, because I was not a solicitor, now that is what I call a scam . I have no problem with people writing their own PAT test labels and certs it's your insurance policy that will have to convince. One really interesting post brought up the condition of the premises wiring, just as important and bands should ask to see a current Periodic test and inspection cert. fire cert and asbestos report and should be contained in the risk assessment. This all may seem very boring and unnecessary nanny state but it is the ay the world has gone the City and Guilds 2391 course used to be £160 until it became a compulsory qualification for Electrical Trade Institutions managers now it is nearly a thousand pounds!


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