Author Topic: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown  (Read 10266 times)

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Offline HackedFridgeMagnet

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Re: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown
« Reply #25 on: April 16, 2012, 11:27:25 pm »
Quote
Ok Voltage sticks do work, but the whole concept of them is fundamentally flawed as a safety check and as a fault finder leave a lot to be desired

I am not really sure what is fundamentally flawed, from what I can see it is just detecting a time varying electric field. Which is actually similar in principal to a multimeter.

As a fault finder it is great in circumstances where you are tracing cables and you dont want to cut them or open a junction box to see if they are on a particular circuit.
In those cases it probably would be more risky to not use a volt stick.

Other safety issues with the multimeter method of testing for a live circuit are having your leads plugged wrongly and causing a short, having your leads not fully in and not realising it, having damaged leads but not knowing and maybe on some meters having the meter switched to DC instead of AC volts.

Also if you think that build construction is an issue then you need to think that build construction is an issue for any test equipment, especially test equipment that is making direct contact with live wires.

I think it is a great tool, mine is a fluke mark II, but I only use in certain situations, and as I was told once "You can trust it if it is glowing".
 

Offline elCap

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Re: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown
« Reply #26 on: April 17, 2012, 05:53:36 am »
Pictures of Tequpiment volt stick, in action and teardown. Not many parts in it. It follows the patent seen in Dave's teardown, but with a few components taken away.
 
 

Offline HackedFridgeMagnet

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Re: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown
« Reply #27 on: April 18, 2012, 11:45:03 am »
elCap, I think you're being a little disingenuous.
I think if you are trying to point out a weakness in this type of equipment you should state a few more details of what you think could have caused the false readings, in these particular snaps.

Maybe even do it again with a video camera hold the stick in your hand and wave it around. ie normal mode of operation.

or Sorry I could be wrong, your volt stick just doesn't work.




« Last Edit: April 18, 2012, 12:02:38 pm by HackedFridgeMagnet »
 

Offline Spawn

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Re: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown
« Reply #28 on: April 18, 2012, 07:30:00 pm »
I lost my very old Fluke Voltalert while ago, after seeing Dave’s video I remember to get another one, I received it today and I must say upgrading to newer version equipment is not bad idea after al. The new one is working a lot better than my old Fluke Voltalert.

I didn’t get a Fluke now but German made Testboy 110 (funny name if you ask me) with a torchlight at the end, it is picking up a lot better than my old Fluke, I am sure the new versions of Fluke work good too.

Offline elCap

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Re: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown
« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2012, 01:41:04 am »
Yes, you are right. It was just an example of when I get wrong readings. I don't have a video camera so I just snapped a few photos. I cannot trust it at all where I'm using it (at home, at my bench). And I have no idea why I get wrong readings. Maybe the electric environment at my bench is the problem?

I will buy another brand to see if it works better for me.

elCap, I think you're being a little disingenuous.
I think if you are trying to point out a weakness in this type of equipment you should state a few more details of what you think could have caused the false readings, in these particular snaps.

Maybe even do it again with a video camera hold the stick in your hand and wave it around. ie normal mode of operation.

or Sorry I could be wrong, your volt stick just doesn't work.
 

Offline HackedFridgeMagnet

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Re: EEVblog #267 - Voltage Detection Stick Teardown
« Reply #30 on: April 19, 2012, 03:08:24 am »
I have a fluke that is mark II or something.
Not sure what mains voltage is like in your country but it only just occurred to me that these things would work a lot better where there is 230 volts than where there is 110volts. We use 230 volts, and where I live it is normally close to 250v. That is probably why the readings I get off it are so reliable.
the Fluke stick also has a pair of leds, one is blue and nominally about 90 volts I think and the other is red meaning danger mains voltage.
As you approach mains you will get first blue then red, but the blue led gives you a bit of a feel for what other efields might be present, such as data and stuff that could effect your readings. I must admit I get a lot of the blue flashes just from the ethernet and pstn and even large bits of metal.

So I am thinking that that if you have a lot of stray fields in your room from data or whatever and your mains is only 110volts then your volt stick probably wouldn't be very reliable.



 


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