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Old 06-03-2016, 04:30 PM
Dunmurry Dunmurry is offline
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So why does this duck quack when flourescent light is switched off then?

Well now I have a big plastic duck at home and when somebody walks past it it quacks and we have to put a bit of blu-tack in it to stop it from doing it. And it sits under a table beside a sofa but if somebody switches off the fluorescent lights in the kitchen it quacks only when you switch them off and even with the blu-tack in its mouth when it wouldn't quack if someone walked past it. So what's going on here about this? Anybody able to tell me more about what is happening around here then?
  #2  
Old 06-03-2016, 05:53 PM
panache45 panache45 is online now
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Why do so many of your thread titles end with "then"? Do you want an answer "now," or at some indeterminate future time?

Nothing personal, just asking.
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Old 06-03-2016, 06:15 PM
D18 D18 is offline
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^Where I'm from it's a common idiom in spoken English. You've never heard it?
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Old 06-03-2016, 06:48 PM
Ignotus Ignotus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunmurry View Post
Well now I have a big plastic duck at home and when somebody walks past it it quacks and we have to put a bit of blu-tack in it to stop it from doing it. And it sits under a table beside a sofa but if somebody switches off the fluorescent lights in the kitchen it quacks only when you switch them off and even with the blu-tack in its mouth when it wouldn't quack if someone walked past it. So what's going on here about this? Anybody able to tell me more about what is happening around here then?
I think we have to establish a few more facts before we can answer your question:

1. Is the light from the kitchen visible from the position of the duck? What if you move the duck or close the kitchen door? Will it still quack when you turn the switch?

2. Is the duck plugged into a socket, or does it run on batteries?
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Old 06-03-2016, 06:58 PM
Dr. Strangelove Dr. Strangelove is online now
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Originally Posted by D18 View Post
^Where I'm from it's a common idiom in spoken English. You've never heard it?
It's more of a British thing; not so common in American English. I mostly know it from Monty Python ("What's all this then?" when the cop shows up).
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Old 06-03-2016, 07:40 PM
D18 D18 is offline
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OP, sorry to continue the hijack! I'm from Canada, and we frequently fall in the middle between the Brits and the Americans , but the way the OP uses "then" at the end of the thread title I'd say is common in spoken Canadian English. But if we were to say "What's all this, then" we'd be making a conscious allusion to Monty Python/UK English.
  #7  
Old 06-04-2016, 02:12 AM
Richard Pearse Richard Pearse is offline
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Originally Posted by Ignotus View Post
I think we have to establish a few more facts before we can answer your question:

1. Is the light from the kitchen visible from the position of the duck? What if you move the duck or close the kitchen door? Will it still quack when you turn the switch?

2. Is the duck plugged into a socket, or does it run on batteries?
I think we need to establish more than that. To me the OP would make as much sense if "duck" was replaced with "mattress", and "quack" was replaced with "flubber".

1. What kind of duck are you talking about and what is it supposed to do?
  #8  
Old 06-04-2016, 03:41 AM
Crazyhorse Crazyhorse is offline
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Originally Posted by Richard Pearse View Post
I think we need to establish more than that. To me the OP would make as much sense if "duck" was replaced with "mattress", and "quack" was replaced with "flubber".

1. What kind of duck are you talking about and what is it supposed to do?
I think we can assume that it's a motion sensor duck similar to these.

We can also assume the motion sensor in the OP's particular duck is located in its mouth since putting putty in the mouth stops the motion detector from working.

The mystery is why the motion sensor appears to trigger when the light in another room is turned off despite the putty being there.

The bigger mystery is why the OP has taken the trouble to install a motion sensing duck under the table by his sofa only to search for a way to disable it, (as opposed to just not having it or taking the batteries out) but fortunately they aren't asking for an answer to that question.

Without more information about the specific duck and the particulars of what kind of motion sensor it uses there's no way to know for sure, but it's possible enough light is leaking through or around the putty that suddenly turning it off triggers the motion sensor.
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Old 06-04-2016, 05:21 AM
glee glee is offline
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As an English chap, I'd like to say that putting 'then' at the end of a sentence is certainly not typical.
However there are a few historical phrases used when joking about policemen, and one of them has it:

- now then, now then, what's all this?
- all right, let's be having you
- you're nicked, chummy
- what's going on here then?
  #10  
Old 06-04-2016, 06:23 AM
gogogophers gogogophers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazyhorse View Post
<snip>

The bigger mystery is why the OP has taken the trouble to install a motion sensing duck under the table by his sofa only to search for a way to disable it, (as opposed to just not having it or taking the batteries out) but fortunately they aren't asking for an answer to that question.
<snip>
One odd duck here.
  #11  
Old 06-04-2016, 06:33 AM
Richard Pearse Richard Pearse is offline
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Originally Posted by Crazyhorse View Post
I think we can assume that it's a motion sensor duck similar to these.
Ah yes. You could assume that. I couldn't as I'd never heard of a motion sensor duck.

Last edited by Richard Pearse; 06-04-2016 at 06:33 AM.
  #12  
Old 06-04-2016, 06:47 AM
Aspidistra Aspidistra is offline
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But now that you have, don't you really really want one?
  #13  
Old 06-04-2016, 07:59 AM
kayaker kayaker is offline
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Do British households typically have motion sensing quacking ducks (with or without their sensors blocked) in their living rooms?

I've heard about the biscuits/crisps nonsense they're always going on about, but what's with the ducks then?
  #14  
Old 06-04-2016, 08:03 AM
Fridgemagnet Fridgemagnet is offline
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It sounds like Dunmurry's duck is being triggered by the big electromagnetic spike produced when the fluorescent light is switched off. Even if the duck's optical sensor is masked off with Blu Tack the EM noise is finding its way into its electronic gubbins.

Fluorescent strip lights have a large inductive ballast in the circuit. When the light is switched on this inductance will limit the current ramp-up so you won't get much of an EM spike then. With the fluorescent running there will be a current through the ballast inductor that gives rise to a magnetic field, and when this current is removed the magnetic field collapses and all that magnetic energy has to go somewhere, so it gets transformed into a voltage spike. This voltage spike is often large enough to arc over the open switch contacts, so you might see a little flash under the switch upon turn off.

Duck may also be susceptible to the fridge/freezer thermostat turning off due to the large inductance of the compressor motor. To prevent spurious quacking you could either fit surge suppressors to the fluorescent light, or keep the duck in a metal box. Steel is good as being ferromagnetic it will also attenuate magnetic fields as well as electric fields; mumetal is even better, but possibly too exotic and expensive for a randomly-triggered duck workaround.
  #15  
Old 06-04-2016, 09:43 AM
Richard Pearse Richard Pearse is offline
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Originally Posted by Aspidistra View Post
But now that you have, don't you really really want one?
It is tempting. Or maybe a motion sensing llama.
  #16  
Old 06-04-2016, 09:50 AM
AncientHumanoid AncientHumanoid is offline
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Does it ECHO then !?!?!?




.

Last edited by AncientHumanoid; 06-04-2016 at 09:51 AM.
  #17  
Old 06-04-2016, 01:01 PM
Spiderman Spiderman is offline
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Originally Posted by Fridgemagnet View Post
Steel is good as being ferromagnetic it will also attenuate magnetic fields as well as electric fields; mumetal is even better
Instead of mumetal how about a mumu. If Groucho can get an elephant in his pajamas, surely the OP's duck can wear a mumu.
  #18  
Old 06-04-2016, 01:07 PM
davidm davidm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Pearse View Post
It is tempting. Or maybe a motion sensing llama.
I want a duck sensing llama, or maybe a llama sensing duck. Same difference.
  #19  
Old 06-04-2016, 01:32 PM
Thudlow Boink Thudlow Boink is offline
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Why a duck?
  #20  
Old 06-04-2016, 07:35 PM
Suburban Plankton Suburban Plankton is offline
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Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink View Post
Why a duck?
They're quite helpful in telling if your houseguest is actually a witch.
  #21  
Old 06-04-2016, 07:49 PM
Shearer Shearer is offline
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Originally Posted by AncientHumanoid View Post
Does it ECHO then !?!?!?

Now then, now then
  #22  
Old 06-05-2016, 07:32 AM
Jesta Jesta is offline
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Originally Posted by Fridgemagnet View Post
or keep the duck in a metal box.
May I suggest the garage?
  #23  
Old 06-05-2016, 08:17 AM
Musicat Musicat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazyhorse View Post
The bigger mystery is why the OP has taken the trouble to install a motion sensing duck under the table by his sofa only to search for a way to disable it, (as opposed to just not having it or taking the batteries out) but fortunately they aren't asking for an answer...
I'd say they are just ducking the question.
  #24  
Old 06-05-2016, 09:02 AM
Richard Pearse Richard Pearse is offline
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Why a duck?
Because one of its legs is both the same.
  #25  
Old 06-05-2016, 07:39 PM
Senegoid Senegoid is offline
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The OP, at least, knows the sound of one duck quacking.
  #26  
Old 06-05-2016, 07:43 PM
Bryan Ekers Bryan Ekers is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fridgemagnet View Post
It sounds like Dunmurry's duck is being triggered by the big electromagnetic spike produced when the fluorescent light is switched off.
Was going to be my suggestion, too. I've got a fluorescent light that when switched on or off makes my flat screen TV cycle flicker, and they're not even on the same circuit.
  #27  
Old 06-06-2016, 06:46 AM
Princhester Princhester is offline
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Originally Posted by Aspidistra View Post
But now that you have, don't you really really want one?
No.
  #28  
Old 06-06-2016, 01:04 PM
Corner Case Corner Case is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kayaker View Post
I've heard about the biscuits/crisps nonsense they're always going on about, but what's with the ducks then?
So, saying "then" at the end of a sentence is a British Bobby thing, a Canadian English thing, and a Western Pennsylvania thing; got it.

I hope the duck is cousin to the Talking Big Mouth Bass (ebay) and not the Exploding Penguin (youtube).
  #29  
Old 06-06-2016, 04:09 PM
Atamasama Atamasama is offline
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I think the duck is calling for help.

I missed the word "plastic" on my first read of the OP and I was horrified.
  #30  
Old 06-06-2016, 04:18 PM
Dewey Finn Dewey Finn is offline
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It's the latest thing in the UK; guard ducks.
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