Posts By: Scott Brown

Unleash Your Inner Super Tech this Holiday Season

Posted on December 29, 2015 by - Academy Talk, Career Talk

Stop the guesswork on service calls and become a Master Samurai Tech. Troubleshoot and repair appliance problems that none of your competitors could. Win the hearts and minds of legions of customers. Take pride in your work. Use coupon code SUPERTECH2016 when you enroll in any course or course bundle at the Samurai Tech Academy before January 6, 2016, and get a 10% tuition discount!

SuperTech 201

Master Samurai Tech Radio Episode 13

Posted on December 21, 2015 by - Academy Talk, MST Radio

In this year-end vodcast, Samurai Appliance Repair Man and the Mrs. Samurai do some reminiscing about all the great students we’ve worked with during 2015, the new features we’ve added to the Samurai Tech Academy's state-of-the-art online appliance repair training courses and we describe even more improvements coming in 2016!


New features already in place:

- Midterm exam with open answers in Core: challenging, enlightening, empowering.
- Weekly live webinar “Office Hours” with the Samurai for students: powerful presentations and illuminating Q&A.

Exciting announcement: even though we’ve increased the features and benefits of the Academy, the tuition is NOT increasing! Instead, we have changed to a continuing access fee model. When you enroll in a course, you receive full access for 1 year (2 years if you purchase a bundle), then you can opt to continue paying a very small monthly fee for access after that time period. (Note: this does not affect students who have already enrolled.)

More flexibility in 2016: we are changing the nature of the quizzes - they will no longer be “blocking” - leaving it up to each student to personalize their learning experience.

Oh, one more thing… In our enthusiasm to describe all the exciting goings-on at Master Samurai Tech, we forgot to mention our year-end tuition special! D’OH! Use coupon code SUPERTECH2016 at get a 10% tuition discount off any Samurai Tech Academy course or course bundle! This coupon is good through January 6, 2016.

Merry Christmas!

You can listen to just the audio portion of the vodcast in the player below or subscribe on iTunes/Android:

Master Samurai Tech Radio, Episode 12 [Special Video Edition]

Posted on October 30, 2015 by - MST Radio


podcast1 200Industry Talk:
- BSH- what's the "H" stand for?
- Charge your smart phone from your refrigerator *wirelessly* with WattUp technology.

Master Samurai Tech news:
- New post on how loose electrical connections, like splices and terminals, can produce enough heat to burn wires and insulation.
- Recapping the dismal and outdated state of appliance repair training today. YouTube makes hands-on disassembly training obsolete. What we need today is BRAINS-ON training! Learning the theory of operation and the underlying technology in modern appliances today so you can figure out weird problems without relying pattern recognition (if this problem, replace that part). Real technicians today are skilled in the lost art of troubleshooting: following a cause and effect chain of reasoning to its logical conclusion and identifying the defective component that is no longer operating within specifications.

Business Talk:
- How to handle those tricky service calls where there was no problem found.

Tech Talk:
- Troubleshooting scenario: electric dryer element not getting hot. Good power supply. Known good element. Element connected: have 120vac from each end (L1 and L2) to N, but 0vac across the element terminals. What conclusion can you draw? Voltage vs. voltage drop; 120/240 single phase-split phase household electrical power supplies; loads in series.

Master Samurai Tech Schematic Lab Webinar 10-22-2015

Posted on October 24, 2015 by - Academy Talk, Tech Talk

Wow, what a great Schematic Lab Webinar we had. It was a Schlabinar!

It was our biggest turnout yet for a live webinar. This is a topic that serious students of appliantology can’t seem to get enough of, and I’m not surprised. As y’all know, I preach the virtues of pre-diagnosis, schematic reading, and troubleshooting. These are the premier technical skills we can possess as technicians. Interpreting the mystic scribblings that the manufacturers provide on their tech sheets requires quite a bit of background knowledge, such as understanding basic electricity, series and parallel circuits, and Ohm’s Law, not to mention collaboration with your Brethren in the Craft.

As with all skills, however, it gets easier with practice and knowledge, which was exactly the point of the Schlabinar. We pored over the actual tech sheets for 5 different appliances, using them as a springboard for diving deeper into the interpretation of these documents as well as their use in your troubleshooting.

If you missed it, or would like to review it again to fully absorb all of the info, you can watch the recording and download the tech sheets we reviewed here (NOTE: you must be enrolled as a student in the Samurai Tech Academy and logged in).

Loose Electrical Connections and Heat

Posted on October 23, 2015 by - Tech Talk

Burnt Electrical Splices in a Junction BoxLoose electrical connections cause multiple problems in appliances, heat being the most common one. We've all seen burnt wire nuts in a dishwasher power junction box or on a dryer heating element. But how does a loose connection produce heat?

Electrical connections need to be mechanically tight to ensure that the resistance across that connection is as low as possible, ideally 0 ohms. When a connection becomes either loose or corroded, it develops resistance. This resistance dissipates power in the form of heat when current flows through it. Even a resistance as low as 5 ohms can produce more than enough heat to burn up the connection and surrounding wires.

You can learn more about resistance and ohms in our Core Appliance Repair Training course.

In this little video, I show you the effects of a loose connection in a circuit and we'll see how much heat, in watts, a typical loose connection produces. I'm also going to dispel a common myth that I hear, even from manufacturers: loose connections cause a circuit to draw more current. This is completely false and I'll prove it to you.