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Just to make sure, before doing something silly: can i place a 2nd antistatic (dissipative) mat on the floor (along the 1st mat on the table) and stand on it with bare feet? Instead of wearing an antistatic wrist strap?

Of course, the mat is connected to mains earth thru a resistor. For safety.

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    \$\begingroup\$ You can get anti-static ankle straps, if that is any help and you don't have cats. \$\endgroup\$ – Andrew Morton Feb 24 '17 at 19:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ You can do a lot of things. Where I used to work, we had antistatic carpets, antistatic mats on the work places, grounding straps, and I wore antistatic shoes. \$\endgroup\$ – JRE Feb 24 '17 at 19:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ @AndrewMorton Haha :-) I was just thinking i might be easier to stand on a dissipative mat. You can walk away and come back any time. No need to put on/off a strap. Bare feet because skin conducts better than leather/rubber. \$\endgroup\$ – Marty Feb 24 '17 at 19:13
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    \$\begingroup\$ Also, wear clothes of cotton or linen. Wool and artificial fibers tend to be worse as far as static charge goes. Blues jeans, cotton T-shirt or other cotton shirt, cotton socks, and leather soled shoes are the best combination I found. \$\endgroup\$ – JRE Feb 24 '17 at 19:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ We used to use antistat carpet spray weekly in the office of the early 80's around test stations. Heel strap can also be alum foil strip under heel and outside sock. Sweat conducts, mat limits current. \$\endgroup\$ – Sunnyskyguy EE75 Feb 24 '17 at 20:20
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Mats will get dirty, and require periodic cleaning (more often than one might think). They should be tested regularly. They will wear out, and need to be replaced (even if it's just one person). In the long run, mats are more expensive than a wrist-strap setup, as wrist/ankle straps last longer, and are far less expensive to replace.

With that being said, we use mats, straps, and esd shoes.

Please, no bare paws while tossing solder, wires, pins, and electrons around.

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Any method you find that works to ground your body (for a wide definition of the word 'works') is OK.

'Works' means it's safe, and you don't forget to use it.

I'd be a bit cautious about doing electronics in bare feet, I drop all sorts of stuff on the floor. That's why the ankle strap that goes under the heel of your shoe as well could be a good idea.

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    \$\begingroup\$ "cautious about doing electronics in bare feet" - if only Dave Jones were here to tell us about his experiences with DIP chips on the floor. Also, Lego bricks and BS1363 plugs should be taken into consideration. \$\endgroup\$ – Andrew Morton Feb 24 '17 at 19:56
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That would probably work, you can also get heel grounders if you like your shoes. They do this in ESD facilities where users need to walk around.

ANSI/ESD S20.20 Paragraph 6.2.2.2

ESD protective flooring used with approved footwear, may be used as an alternative to the wrist strap system for standing operations.

http://www.americanfloormats.com/heel-grounder-for-anti-static-mats/

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The problem with heel straps and what you are suggesting is you have to stay connected at all times. If there is a chair the heels are not going to stay on the ground, not grounded, pointless. Just the way humans are when they sit, heels bounce, or come off the ground. Barefoot you have a lot better chance as it is not just the heels. But wrist straps, esp the beeping kind, no competition. Should never rely on heel straps or anything while walking, heel straps are a fail there too. If you use them at all you have to use two heel straps, otherwise pointless. Just use the wrist strap. Put the unit in an ESD bag or box, close it. Then you can release the wrist strap walk/move/etc and reverse the process when you get to the next bench.

I would say that barefoot is significantly better than heel straps.

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