Author Topic: Changing meterd Phases  (Read 2275 times)

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george65

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Changing meterd Phases
« on: May 05, 2017, 04:16:35 AM »

* Thank you in advance for any and all replies but please let me pre empt some predictable responses and say I am after TECHNICAL/ factual answers rather than moral ones which won't be appropriate anyway*

I'm looking at buying a new home. I checked out the meter box and it has 3 phase power.
One phase which I think is the "Main" one has a smart meter. The other 2 have the analouge spinny meters.  The Smart meter also controls the off peak hot water.  It has a boost Button which will kick in the water heater on the standard full tilt rate.

The ducted AC is 3 phase so I'd need that to go through the smart meter but what I would like to know is if it is possible to simply move the feed for everything else being the light and power for the house and the shed along with the water heater to a phase the spinny meters are on?
I can generate and back feed my own power, but everything I have read about the smart meter model on this place says any back feed will actually register as useage on the thing which I'll get billed for. 

I'm thinking that all the single phase circuits must come off one phase which is probably the smart metered one so realistically and factually, can the connections for those not simply be taken off a phase the analogue meters are on and just leave the 1 leg of the AC on the electronic meter?

I'm not sure why the smart meter is there . There is no Time of use metering there and far as I can tell, it does not send signals of the usage and even if it did, the other meters would have to be physically read anyway. All the tariffs for all 3 phases are the same.

I'd really like to have the smart meter done away with but can't see that happening. I'd probably end up with 3 of the bastards if I said anything.
The whole BS about saving you money has now been proven wrong in a Gubbermint commissioned report and the health concerns are too strong in my book to completely ignore.


OperaHouse

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2017, 08:15:06 AM »
I've never heard of a setup like that.  My first thought is that they are dummy meters.  Oh they spin, but under them there are current transformers that feed into the smart meter and those meters are no longer looked at. One of the main points of a smart meter is no one has to go to the house to read it anymore.  In your part of the world nothing is conventional so I don't really know local customs.

mab

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2017, 03:48:24 PM »
I too wouldn't expect 3 separate meters unless each phase was supplying a different user and each received their own bill - you'd normally have a single meter.

But given what you've described, as long as all the phases are 'equal' (i.e. same size cable and supply fuse) and you are paying the bill ( or all three bills), I can't see why you couldn't move the house onto a different phase - although you might be well advised to seek local advice as to local rules.

the only other caution I could give is to move all the household single phase circuit together, as 'here' there are rules about all single phase circuits in a room being on the same phase (just an additional safety thing so your table lamp and your 'scope' won't have 415v between their lives).

george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2017, 04:20:53 PM »

Smart meter is definitely Single phase. Probably can't read it on the pic being downsized but I can read it on the originals.
The AC is 3 phase, Can't see anything else that is but that alone would need all 3 legs. Each of the service Fuses ( from the pole) is 100A).
 I think the main reason for the smart meter is the Ripple control for the water heater. I also know for a period of time they were installing smart meters but there weren't enough to go around. I suspect they put the SM on the main phase so they could do time of use in the future.

This may be confusing to people in the US as I know your power system is very Different and just as confusing to us. :0)

Most places I looked at had 4 analogue meters. One for each phase and an off peak meter which is standard here. Old style homes like I'm in now have 2 meters, one for the single phase and one for the off peak.   

eigenmorph

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2017, 07:38:50 AM »
You've probably resolved the issue by now, but a couple of thoughts crossed my mind. The photograph seems to show a fairly straightforward looking domestic installation, so are the two other phases in current use at all? As far as backfeeding is concerned, I'm sure the Utility Company has encountered people with similar queries before. Customer services will probably be no use, but there will be a technical specialist at the Utility company who will assist. It would seem that a third standard meter alongside the smart meter may be all that is required. A smart meter which can handle the backfeed may be a readily available substitute from the Utility. In the UK & Ireland, the consumer is responsible for everything beyond the meter. For local knowledge, have a word with a local electrician.

george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2017, 03:20:45 AM »
The other circuits ( meters) are connected and in use. This is apparently to balance the loads. The feed from the street is 100A but the house is only wired for 80A per phase.  I haven't worked out which circuits are on what loads as yet but I do know the AC is across all 3.  If that Dies I'll do to a single phase unit and eliminate everything on the smart meter completely.

The utility's here will only take back feeding on a separate meter as you mentioned. This enables them to pay you .6 c Kwh for what you generate and sell to them while they charge you around .30 c kwh for what they sell to you. I am just going to backfeed with an approved inverter back into the household circuits ( inverters/ panel sets) and then build one of the devices that matches demand on the 3rd phase for the AC so I get fair return on what I generate.


eigenmorph

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2017, 03:42:12 AM »
I presume you mean that the Utility pays you half of what they charge you rather than what you have written.

Why is theft not theft when it is approved by legislation? We have had our turf bogs stolen from us by the Irish Government. We paid for that land so that we could extract the turf for home heating. No compensation! All part of the "Mathew Effect" I suppose.

I should have looked more closely at your meter panel. Did you make the marks referring to P1 and P2 or was that the previous owner?

Bear in mind that the utility analyses usage statistics and is likely to inspect your installation if they suspect anything is out of order. That happened to us when we got rid of the off peak heating. Not only the total usage but the balance between phases will be examined.
 

george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2017, 04:41:17 PM »
I presume you mean that the Utility pays you half of what they charge you rather than what you have written.

No, What I wrote was correct for where I am.  .6C FIT and .32c to buy with an .89 day supply charge.

Where my father is in the country, they pay .8c Kwh and charge .41C Kwh with .92C day supply charge.

Their " justification" is this is the whole sale cost and the rest goes to preserving the system with maintenance of lines and poles etc.
Yes, it must take a lot of maintenance on the pole and wires between my place and my Next door neighbour or to the house across the street they take the power I generate and sell it to.

Why is it not theft?
Because the Gubbermints are the legislators is why.
I think it's a complete scam and crock of ship. More lip service to saving the planet etc. If they really were committed as they say to that they would encourage everyone to have panels and pay a fair return on the power you supplied them.

They also have this other scam going which is green power. You pay more for your electricity supposedly so one of their suppliers who make power from methane from a landfill supply that to the grid and..... To promote green power.  If that's not the biggest crock I don't know what is!
Only one set of power lines and I'm sure they send an order to these company's to say we need you to generate  20 Kwh/ day because Fred Blogs has too many Dollars and not enough sense and has fallen for this.  ::)

Hey, here's an idea... why not pay people a FAIR price, like 1:1 on the power they generate AND buy! That would encourage and promote green power wouldn't it?  They had a scheme her about 7-8 years ago where they gave you an interest free loan to buy panels and gave you a .60C Kwh FIT which was about 3 times the cost price of power at the time. It was REALLY successful with loads of people taking it up and was supposed to last 5 years but was shut sown in under a year.  The gubbermints  reasoning?..... they had achieved the level of solar power they they had targeted.
Well if that was the case, why are you still pushing all this green power nonsense now?

A mate put panels on his roof with this scheme and racked up over $500 credit. He kept asking them for his $500 but they wouldn't pay saying it was held in credit. He said if I'm using less than I produce, I'll always be in credit and where is the advantage? 
The .60C rate ended january one and he applied over a year ago to have his metering changed so instead of a feed in and buy rate, he only gets charged what he uses with the solar supplementing his consumption.
He's had every excuse under the sun why they can't do that. No one available, no meters available ( which is crap because he can buy the self same approved meter privately in any qty he wants) and so it goes. anything to keep him paying more.


We are still getting hammered and brow beaten about emissions with all the coal fired stations being blown up and literally leaving whole states in the dark  yet, as usual, doing something realistic, practical and constructive is swept under the table and ignored.  If it made the gubbermint and big biz a dollar, you know they would be all over it but when it takes money out their coffers.... don't want to know. 

As I have said all along, this green save the planet thing is only good when Big biz and Gubbermints are making a buck from it. When people are saving a buck, then it's illegal.


All the board markings are as they were. I haven't touched anything. I am going to have a sparky mate put in a bigger panel so he can put RCD's on the lights and we are going to wire the shed for 40A 3 phase.


I'm not sure about the inspection. Where I am now our consumption falls below their minimum prediction for a single person in a unit. Never had it queried or inspected. Not to say they won't, but I would say that chances are on my side.  I turned off my off peak a couple of years ago and not been queried on that either.
I think checking balance between phases where I am would be difficult.  Loads are intermittent with hot water and AC for a start not to mention the Biocycle system for the waste water. In any case, my sparky mate has looked everything over and said there is no problem because the total load of the house is less than what a single phase could supply anyway and not everyone has 3 phase. The place I am in now does not have 3 phase yet has potentially higher draw due tot he way the circuits have been wired.




george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2017, 03:38:59 AM »
Capitalism is based on dishonesty.

Jim
Sir;
On this forum people from ALL countries are welcome. With that also comes individual opinions and respect of another person's opinion.
Please refrain from the sort of inflammatory remarks lest it cause another flame war on this forum.

Nothing inflammatory or disagreeable said and certainly no offense taken. I couldn't agree more.  The world and especially business in the west is based on corruption. There are so many examples one would have to be in laughable Denial to propose otherwise.  My opinion, and you can agree with it or not, is the current green, save the world ideal would be nothing without the profit factor for governments and big Business. You show me something to do with green on any significant scale and i'll show you where someone is making money and doing diddly squat if anything for the environment.

This .6c in, 35c+ out power charges  is prime example as is paying for " green power". WTF should I pay for green power when I can generate it myself and they make a profit on it?

Jim,
My friend is very into reducing his footprint on the earth and all that kind of thing but unlike a lot of people with that persuasion, he does his homework to make sure the choices he makes are in fact beneficial and what he is using or doing is not worse than the normal way. being a smart cookie and having done his homework, he can rip shreds off this whole green idea and tell you about all the scams and misinformation out there. He says 6 out of 7 green and environmentally friendly products are in fact worse than the normal ones they supposedly replace once you dig right down to the start and the whole life cycle. He was very dissapointed with them trying to scam him as he wanted the money to put towards more new panels. After being mucked around his position was  " why bother".  They successfully converted an advocate into a detractor.

He's spent a good amount on his home making it as efficient and green as he can without going stupid and diminishing his lifestyle but says the only benefit in reality is that some of it saves him money long term.  Once he gets his 2 way meter installed, if ever, he's going to set up more panels and backfeed the way I am going to do.

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Like all evangelists, they were aggressively persistent
Spot on!

Seen it a million times.  If you don't think their way you are scum, stupid and they will use all means possible, frequently Violence to prove how enlightened, friendly and doing the right thing they are. There have been a number of protests around the country here for different things. The ones on the side of Right and good are ALWAYS the ones that wear face masks and get violent trying to enforce their views while the other side just don't want whatever cockamamie idea the ones pushing whatever bent they have at the time.  I have seen a lot of such Hypocrisy right here whee there is only one way to think .  If you say something for the approved idea, that's fine, say all you like. If you say something against the very same thing, sorry, that discussion is taboo.


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One approach is to use the power you generate in some value added way.The advantage is that whatever you produce from the electricity can be sold at a fair market price. That's ever so much easier said than done. What would be simple in an honest society forces people to find workarounds. Capitalism is based on dishonesty.

I have had a lot of ideas ( stolen other peoples brilliant ideas) for how to heat, cool and power my home.  I do a lot with mainly used veg oil running my vehicles on it for coming up to 15 years this october and doing a lot with burning it for heat.
The one thing I have discovered is it's hard to utilize a lot of things and keep your home and yard looking good.  I'm here a few more days before moving into the new home and realising how difficult it will be to put things into practice and keep the place looking nice.  Also difficult to apply certain things into a home practically, aesthetically and safely.

The most practical method seems to be electric. That makes solar panels the ideal energy source but I also have a number of diesel engines I can run on used veg oil and use them for generation as well. When you get into that as I have over the years, you really get to appreciate how good solar is. Virtually maintenance free, little to wear or fail at least for many years at a time, silent and now quite cheap.
If you compare that to an engine,..... Fuel, oil, belts, switching, limited life cycle....  I am going to set up an engine or 3 for power generation both for standalone and backfeeding but it will for sure be a labour of love.

That said, I'm going to try and set up a small burner with a hot water tank or heat exchanger and use that in the bathroom I am going to put in the shed.
Still deciding whether to make it ultra modern and drop dead beautiful or go with something like a steam punk style with Corrugated tin walls, exposed copper pipe with industrial valves for taps etc.

eigenmorph

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2017, 04:34:02 AM »

Thankyou for your many comments. They were extremely interesting. I'm glad I didn't offend or inflame you.

Judge Justice Holmes famously stated: "Freedom of Speech is Freedom for the Speech we Loath."

I believe that was in the American Supreme Court. I'm not such Which Constitutional Amendment  refers to Freedom of Speech.

One comment of yours in particular stands out in relation to Alternative Energy Sources:

"Also difficult to apply certain things into a home practically, aesthetically and safely."

Anyone browsing the sites of some Sustainable Energy related organisations could be forgiven for concluding that Sustainable Energy is about making a commitment to live in a scrapyard. One wonders whether their actual intent is to dissuade people from exploring alternative energy solutions.




Bruce S

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2017, 10:27:37 AM »
george65;
You know as a Mod , I had to put that there right  :) ?

Way too many people have gotten on the Politically Correct bandwagon, or thin skinned not sure which.

I try to write as I would talk to a person standing in front of me.

BTW: I vote for the steampunk style !!
A kind word often goes unsaid BUT never goes unheard

eigenmorph

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #11 on: August 11, 2017, 06:53:01 AM »
I suspected that might be the case Bruce. You have your legal obligations to observe, and there are no doubt some capitalists with a flash point close to absolute zero.

To get back to the metering problem...

Is it not the case that having purchased electricity it belongs to the purchaser to use as they please? Presumably it can be sold on again. It would seem that any contract which prevented onward sale would violate the Anti Trust Laws. In principle it would be possible for a group of neighbours to have a single grid connection and therefore a single standing charge. The actual usage and backfeed amongst individuals would be monitored by their own meters. Obviously this line of approach depends upon proximity of users and their readiness to cooperate. It could be piloted without any of the individuals actually disconnecting from the grid, in order to identify implementation problems. It doesn't eliminate the standing charge, but could ameliorate it.

In respect of standing charges, I wonder how many Rail companies, Coach operators, and 7-11s receive standing charges from all the people in their local communities for maintaining their services? I hold the view that standing charges ought to be optional against paying a higher rate for actual usage. No doubt it would take a very potent Class Action to achieve such an end. Furthermore they would require a person of Mr Bugliosi's abilities driving it.

Incidentally George, you refer to using Oil. May I ask whether this is recycled?
     

george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #12 on: August 11, 2017, 10:08:52 AM »
george65;
You know as a Mod , I had to put that there right  :) ?

Way too many people have gotten on the Politically Correct bandwagon, or thin skinned not sure which.

I don't pander to fools or whingers but then i'm under no obligation to.  If someone wants to get in a hissy fit over nothing, tough. My life has been too hard, too full of grief and too short to beat around the bush or worry about those born with a silver spoon in their mouth or a carrot up their    .

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try to write as I would talk to a person standing in front of me.
Exactly only I have to censor myself a lot because I am a lot more direct to peoples faces than what I am allowed on most forums.

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BTW: I vote for the steampunk style !!

The rest of the committee ( wife and daughter) did too. .... Somewhat to my surprise.
The comment was why have 2 bathrooms the same when we can have elegant inside and funky out?
I might be able to save some big money on bathroom fittings although it seems extremely Difficult to get a suitable metal trough for a bath here.
Looking at commercial hot water heaters, I'm thinking of finding a stainless steel tank and having a flue for oil heating welded into it as well as the thread for an electric along with the relief valve etc. Could do it hybrid with a solar water panel as well.

george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #13 on: August 11, 2017, 10:54:42 AM »
In principle it would be possible for a group of neighbours to have a single grid connection and therefore a single standing charge. It could be piloted without any of the individuals actually disconnecting from the grid, in order to identify implementation problems.

I read a while back, maybe a year ago, about a plan for a commounity on the other side of the country to set up an independent/ self powered settlement.
it was aimed at retirees and they appeared, for once, to have done their home work very well. Every house and building would have panels and every street corner would have a Shipping container that was beautified which would house batteries. They would all be interconnected.  They did a lot of research on the average sun days, expected power consumption etc and had 3 days worth of reserve capacity. They knew there was about twice a year that wouldn't be enough so had planned for generators to be installed which would be capeable of re charging the batteries over night. They were on an environmental bent but not stupid about it like they could never use fossil fuel, they were happy to go 98% without it and be practical and realistic.

The last I read the project was shitcanned because the power authority took the developers to court and INSISTED they had to be connected to the grid. Developers thought OK, we can be connected but does not mean we have to switch it on and maybe it will be better than the generators when we do need it.

Only problem was, the power company WITH the backing of the state government wanted some fantastic price to connect them because of the remote location.  They selected the location for it's sunshine, mild weather, position near the sea etc and it was simply not practical to move it all elsewhere because they were being forced to do the very thing they were wanting to avoid in the first place.  I heard they were going to appeal the case but their own council had told them it was a very slim chance.  Far as I know, a good, sound, environmentally beneficial project was killed off because of this greed by the power company and the state gubbermint. "But yeah, they are all for the environment. Just ask any polly whos making a buck out of it.


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Incidentally George, you refer to using Oil. May I ask whether this is recycled?   

I spose it is when I'm done with it!  ;D

I use veg oil. Pick it up from restaurants, cafe's, clubs etc. I usually settle it ( or prefilter if I'm in a rush) Dry and final filter finer than pump diesel and into the vehicle it goes. Or my listeroid or other diesel engines.  I'm also big into burners that run on oil  ( Youtube " oil burner" )  for all sorts of heating applications. I don't worry about drying and fine filtering that oil, run it through any bit of fabric is more than enough and often use the less desirable oil... over used, burnt, rank, etc.  Burners don't care.

I do on occasion use engine oil and the greenwashed get in a real hissy fit about that.  Like I care. I get given a lot by people and as it is a free energy resource to me, I use it in the burners for metal casting, pretend blacksmithing or anything else I want to make hot.
I prefer the Veg oil though for a bunch of reasons, it doesn't stink, stain your hands, cleans up easy, is easily available here and what I know best.

When I got into it I was constantly lambasted because I admitted I was in it for the money saving not the environmental BS. So many of the greenwashed were too damn stupid to see the reason I was in it was irrelevant, the outcome was still aligned to their cause.  The ONLY people I know are still in it and haven't dropped off years ago are the few guys like me that id it to save money and for the feeling of independence.  The rest of the loudmouth arsewipes that called me names because I wasn't greenwashed like them have LONG gone and I know one of the biggest whingers and low life snakes and hypocrites that run a local forum has been driving petrol cars for years now.

That guy and a couple of others I swear I would smack in the face if I saw them in the street for the crap they gave me and their hypocrisy.
Suffice to say my REPEATED experience with the greenwashed has not been good and left me with a real disdain for these types. many have made the mistake of having a go at me for burning oil and killing the planet as they make out before they knew what they were talking about and I was infact burning a sanctioned and ordained biofuel.

I love oil. It has benifited and enhanced my family life. It was only a few years ago the penny dropped with my son as to how much money we had saved and what we had been able to do because we could drive for free.  Here the kids have to do 120 hours with an instructor ( parent/ licensed person) to get their provisional license.  My kids got theirs in the minimum allowed time of a few months. Most of their friends too a year rather than the mandatory 3 months.
My son said to me he was talking to a friend and he said he could only drive when the family needed to go somewhere or the occasional hour of driving practice. My kids went driving whenever they liked. the cost of fuel was never an issue but when my son worked out what that 120 hours would cost, then he saw the reason behind my " Messing around with that $#|+".

I never had so much oil as when teaching them to drive. The logical thing to do with that time was... go pickup oil.  Every night would be  about 15L used and 200L brought home. They got so much practice reversing into tight spots, around things and other precision driving most kids don't get.  My sons party trick pretty soon was to rub the side of the dumpsters with the tyre which overhung the wheel arch by 2" when reversing up to the oil drums.
There was one place where this was practical but others he'd criss cross the carpark to demonstrate how he could do it every time.

I used to pick him up at night from his part time job and we'd go out of an hour or however much he felt up to. The requirement was for a min of 20 hours night driving. He had 84 hours when he did his test which he passed with only one point penality which the examiner said " I could give him full score because that would mean he was perfect and no one is a perfect Driver"

I have gone about as far as I can with my oily proclivities especially with the burners. I need now to learn more about arduino and the like to be able to control and apply the heat and energy I can create with them.  It's real easy to create a monster that spews out 600 or 1000Kw of heat energy, it's a whole different thing to regulate and apply that power to practical use. I can already easily surpass the all important Turndown ration of commercial burners be they gas or oil but when I can apply things like thermostatic control and safety features, I'll be able to do a lot more with it.

I'm not under any delusion, this is not anything like they used to make out, a mainstream energy source. It's just something a few nutters like myself can take advantage of and get benefit out of.


eigenmorph

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2017, 04:01:46 AM »
Helloo George,

Thanks for a superb lesson in used oil.

I wish my sons were as sensible as yours. They were at one time, but then they started following some "Big men". Wealthy individuals to whom visible waste is part of showing how powerful they are. They probably expected the money to rub off on them. I thought at first it was an adolescent thing that would pass. 10 years on, I've revised my opinion. One of them has just bought himself a Crewcab tipper - straight out of the box. I'd like to know what was wrong with the one he had. I presume his accountant told him that it was the clever thing to do taxwise.

I'd say I'm not far from being a nutter like you.
 

george65

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Re: Changing meterd Phases
« Reply #15 on: August 24, 2017, 07:01:47 PM »

We did it pretty tough when the kids were growing up. They missed out on a lot but now We are better than average well off, they are still conservative and value things as do my wife and I. I drive a 24 yo truck and although I could afford anything within reason I wanted, I'm happy with that. I like it, it suits me and I'll stick with it till it becomes non viable.

My father is quite well off now having worked his guts out all his life and still working coming up to 80 years old.
He does like the new and upmarket things but good on him. I drive his new Mercedes sports car and it's nice but not something I'd be comfortable living with every day. I certainly don't abuse my old 4Wd but I'm alos not freaking out when I park it that a scratch could take thousands off the vale or cost thousands to fix. 

I have a good friend that is all about image.  He had a truck and made every excuse why spending $15K on the thing to get it back to virtualy as new condition with teh running gear and a few creature comforts was a bad investment. He went out and spend $200K on a new truck and I don't know if he ever was able to get enough work in to make the first 6 months repayments.  He lost it and made every excuse but the truth was it was an unjustifiable stupidity and indulgence in the first place.
He has just broken up with his long term partner and they will both come away with over $200K from the sale of the house which has risen dramatically in value since they bought it.  He's already talking another truck and more indulgent rubbish. I said to another friend I give him 3- 6 months and hell have no money but a nice car and truck and an even bigger ego. He's a fantastic guy, always there the minute you ask but the money he spends on silly toys and trying to show off is very sad.

Maybe your sons just have to learn for themselves.  I always say, there are some things you can teach people and some things they have to learn themselves and I base that on my own behavior not as an insult to others. I know I have had a few self inflicted falls and come downs and the main thng is to learn from them and not do them again.

Unfortunately you then have people like my friend whom just seem to learn how to make bigger mistakes but I'm sure your boys will be a lot smarter even if their learning curve is not as quick as we'd like!  :0)