Author Topic: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods (note: lots of pics)  (Read 18164 times)

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Offline bitseeker

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Starting this new thread for everyone to share how they package up their $20 transistor tester (LCR T3, LCR T4, GM320, AY-AT, etc.) or make other physical customizations to the basic kit.

For firmware-related discussion, visit the original thread $20 LCR ESR Transistor checker project.

Here are some examples to get started (click thumbnail for larger image):

upsss
Added an ISP connector, banana jacks, a Li-Ion battery which is charged through the DC connector, and replaced the crystal with a 16MHz one.


madires
My very first tester with the rotary encoder and frequency counter options.


pepe10000
A 3D-printed case with banana jacks.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2017, 03:29:08 pm by bitseeker »
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Offline upsss

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2017, 04:09:30 am »
This was my original tester.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2017, 07:09:54 am by upsss »
 
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Offline bitseeker

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2017, 05:30:29 am »
Thanks, upsss. You can attach larger images. The forum will create the thumbnail for you. I had to do them manually in my original post because I referenced images from the original transistor tester thread rather than reupload.
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Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2017, 07:29:39 am »
This post seems to me a very good idea, so I'm going to put the photos of my 3 LCR-T4-H multimeters.

Box inclined printed in 3D:
https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1372607
ISP Connector.
Ni-Mh 9v battery.
Charger module built with an LM317 with constant current.
Battery cutout switch.
Copper sticker for discharge of capacitors (used in glassworks).
Rubber stickers for the base (used as insulation in windows).
Stickers for serigraphs printed on inkjet printer and improved with spray varnish.
 
« Last Edit: December 19, 2017, 08:02:14 am by pepe10000 »
 
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Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2017, 07:37:19 am »
Flat box printed in 3D:
https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:1797074
ISP Connector.
3.7V Lithium battery for a cell phone (recycled).
Charger module + power supply (9.2v).
LC filter (not necessary, but I like well filtered voltages).
Low battery LED.
Battery cutout switch.
Banana connectors.
Copper sticker for discharge of capacitors (used in glassworks).
Rubber stickers for the base (used as insulation in windows).
Stickers for serigraphs printed on inkjet printer and improved with spray varnish.
 
« Last Edit: December 19, 2017, 08:02:51 am by pepe10000 »
 
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Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2017, 07:42:27 am »
Door bell box:
https://www.ebay.es/itm/White-Plastic-Box-Project-Diy-Electronic-Case-Box-100-80-29mm-L-W-H/190998494412?hash=item2c7865bccc:g:K4IAAOxyUrZSptU7
ISP Connector.
Ni-Mh 9v battery.
Charger module built with an LM317 with constant current.
Battery cutout switch.
Adapters for SMD components.
Adapters for IR and Optocouplers.
Copper sticker for discharge of capacitors (used in glassworks).
Rubber stickers for the base (used as insulation in windows).
Stickers for serigraphs printed on inkjet printer and improved with spray varnish.

« Last Edit: March 20, 2018, 06:29:27 pm by pepe10000 »
 

Online casinada

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2017, 07:52:22 am »
Muy didacticos Pepe  :) :-+

Condensador tambien Capacitor  :)
 
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Offline upsss

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2017, 08:13:11 am »
@pepe10000, What is this chart Cap vs. Voltage on the bottom of your testers?
 
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Offline aargee

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2017, 08:19:24 am »
Looks like a capacitor ESR values table. Recommended values for the capacitor vs the capacitor working voltage.

Nice cases, designed yourself?
Not easy, not hard, just need to be incentivised.
 
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Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2017, 08:24:37 am »
@pepe10000, What is this chart Cap vs. Voltage on the bottom of your testers?

It is a table of ESR values of capacitors that I use as reference.
 

Offline linux-works

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2017, 08:25:26 am »


just got that done today ;)

idea from the other main thread; I'll post more photos and the design files for those that want to lasercut their own.

 
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Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2017, 08:28:26 am »
Looks like a capacitor ESR values table. Recommended values for the capacitor vs the capacitor working voltage.

Nice cases, designed yourself?

No, the 3D printed boxes are from a well-known website, which I have only modified to suit my taste

I do not know if the rules of the forum allow to put links to these 3D pages.

And the doorbell box is recycled and adapted.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2017, 08:30:02 am by pepe10000 »
 

Offline upsss

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2017, 09:07:08 am »
@pepe10000, What is this chart Cap vs. Voltage on the bottom of your testers?

It is a table of ESR values of capacitors that I use as reference.

FYI, there is no such thing as "standard" ESR values of Capacitance vs. Voltage.  "Regular" (crappy) Electrolytic of the same value and voltage can have up to TEN times higher ESR than a high quality "Low ESR" Electrolytic designed specifically for high frequency PWM circuits. 
« Last Edit: March 10, 2017, 10:03:48 am by upsss »
 
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Offline aargee

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2017, 11:06:47 am »
Yes, but it is a nice go-to reference for common DC / Low frequency expected values. Most of the ones I've changed are quite obviously stuffed, with the readings way above the ball park.
I usually go with an "A-B" comparison with a new good brand electrolytic if in doubt.

I'll post my Th!ngyverse sourced 3D printed case later. (That's not the website you're looking for - no?  8))
Not easy, not hard, just need to be incentivised.
 
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Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2017, 05:04:42 pm »
I'll post my Th!ngyverse sourced 3D printed case later. (That's not the website you're looking for - no?  8))

Exactly, the designs I used are from that page.
 

Offline pepe10000

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2017, 05:21:51 pm »
@pepe10000, What is this chart Cap vs. Voltage on the bottom of your testers?

It is a table of ESR values of capacitors that I use as reference.

FYI, there is no such thing as "standard" ESR values of Capacitance vs. Voltage.  "Regular" (crappy) Electrolytic of the same value and voltage can have up to TEN times higher ESR than a high quality "Low ESR" Electrolytic designed specifically for high frequency PWM circuits.

This table is quite old and as it says aargee only serves as a small reference of the expected values of ESR for low frequency.
 

Offline linux-works

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #16 on: March 14, 2017, 02:39:38 am »
tweaked some measurements (allowing more room for finger/thumb to access the lever).  also added a small slide switch to cut power directly.



the pcb is red, so for fun, I went with red plastic, too.  I kind of like how it ended up.

I have extra cases; if you want one, PM me.  I also have extras of the mounting hardware (rubber feet, screws, standoffs, nuts, switch, small rotary encoder knob).  all the parts were from amazon, so for those that have amazon in their locale, these parts are somewhat easily buyable.

parts list:

kit: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01HCXG9YS
rubber feet and 4-40 screws: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007HKFPYM https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00137N2J0
small rotary knob: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B015E4CUAO
slide switch (bottom mount): https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007Q854MS
standoffs (4-40, 1/2" and 5/8"): https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00137S0V0 https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00137NJBQ
screws (4-40x1/4") https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00F34USTG/
plastic 4-40 nuts: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009EENZ00
2-56 nuts and screws (for switch): https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00F3320HK https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009EENY88

other than the raw 1/8" plastic, I think that's all the parts that did not come in the kit, and that I used to build the unit, above (other than the 3 test lead mini banana jacks; those were from mouser or digikey and I don't have their #'s handy; but they are easy enough to find).

HTH
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 02:51:18 am by linux-works »
 
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Offline bitseeker

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #17 on: March 14, 2017, 06:12:18 am »
The red turned out great! One tweak that I might try on it would be to add a riser of some sort (IC socket(s)?) to raise the zif connector for easier access to the lever and the component under test.

Do you plan to add connectors for the signal gen and counter? I suppose at least one would fit on the side opposite the power switch.
You don't acquire TEA. It acquires you.
 

Offline PointyOintment

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #18 on: March 14, 2017, 12:12:24 pm »
That looks amazing! One question: what does the 1112333 mean? Is it this layout?
1
1
1
2
3
3
3
NCNCNC2NCNCNC
I haven't seen any layout like that on the testers I've looked at closely so far.

When mine arrives (hopefully soon—I've waited 4 months so far) I think I'm going to do a 3D-printed case for it. I want exposed ZIF socket, exposed SMD pads, low-profile knob, and permanently attached leads at the top, with ideally both pointy probes and some kind of grabbers (double-ended). Does anybody know of leads like that, that come in three colors?

Offline StillTrying

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #19 on: March 14, 2017, 12:35:51 pm »
Both rows of the zif are probably the same, I've got a yellow T4 one with a normal green backlight LCD, on that the zif connections are
1231111
1231111

That 1112333 zif arrangement looks more convenient than mine!
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 12:44:21 pm by StillTrying »
 

Offline madires

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #20 on: March 14, 2017, 12:51:44 pm »
I like to following pinout (+/- is the optional Zener check up to 50V):
123+++--
112233+-

Another handy pinout would be:
12312321
11223321
 

Offline linux-works

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #21 on: March 14, 2017, 02:06:14 pm »
the way this kit was made, the pin1 slots are the left 3, pin2 only has the middle slot and the rest of the 3 to the right are pin3.   seems very logical that way.  other layouts seem odd to me, but I had no choice with this kit ;)

on my chassis, I did not plan to add freq-out and voltage/freq-in, but I could be talked into it, I guess.  there is room on the back for connectors, but the front is taken by the battery.

as for the riser of the zif socket, I agree its down too low.  maybe a wire-wrap socket would be a good idea for the base, then press and glue the zif into the wirewrap socket.  not sure it will fit, as the wirewrap socket is machine pin style (round) and the pins on the zif are flat.

I also want to find a real zif socket since the fake 'textool' one will go 'funky' in no time flat.  its already acting funny (press the lever down and its sometimes hard to grab and push back up again).


that aside, I got some requests for this case from folks in europe.  I wonder: would someone be willing to be a middleman for me and take the combined pkg of plastic and re-mail out to the local guys who want one?  might be easier for me that way than sending X pkgs to various locations in europe.

I do plan to post the mechanical drawing (files) for this so anyone who has a laser cutter can do it or farm it out.  the only slight problem is that the thickness of the acrylic is somewhat non-standard; its less than 1/8" and if you use standard 1/8" plastic, the notch holes will be too tight.  I used what my local techshop had in stock, but unfortunately, they don't seem very keen on reordering and so I have no stock left right now and unless they order more (been waiting weeks for them to get on the ball!) I can't print anymore.  I keep asking them to order more plastic but they don't seem to care, for some reason (anyone know who the manager is of the redwood city tech shop?  no name or number is listed on the main site and I'd like to call that manager and let him know his people are not doing their jobs - no one is ordering more plastic and the desk jockeys don't ever relay my messages to the ordering person, sigh...).

 

Offline perieanuo

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #22 on: March 14, 2017, 05:54:38 pm »
Lokk what this guy did, I think it's the best case I ever seen for the GM328.Maybe it may costs a little more,for me in France you go for 40 euros or more to print it but finally it's a semi-pro case.
Maybe even pro, the project was forced to obey the actual shitty solutions for i/o-s.
All credits go to the person who did this of course.
http://3dtoday.ru/3d-models/mechanical-parts/body/box_tft_gm328_transistor_tester_/



best regards to everyone,ovidiu
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 06:16:40 pm by perieanuo »
 

Offline luma

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #23 on: March 15, 2017, 12:37:59 am »
I printed this case from Thingiverse for my M12864 style tester:
 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Show us your $20 Transistor Tester enclosures and mods
« Reply #24 on: March 15, 2017, 07:49:14 am »
That looks amazing! One question: what does the 1112333 mean?

I think the dropped '2' is for visual effect. It helps it not to blend in with the multiple '1' and '3'. I like it.
You don't acquire TEA. It acquires you.
 
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