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Amprobe caught using fake HRC fuses.

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This fuse used to be in my AM-220. I blew this 440mA fuse a while ago so I kept it in my parts bin as reference. I broke it in half yesterday for a tutorial. Guess what I found? It's fake!

It's supposed to be filled with sand or other insulating material.

I don't think Amprobe has specified HRC fuses for this meter. The specsheet lists '250V 0.5A' and '250V 10A' fuses; HRC devices would be rated for kV (and kA rupture capacity). This appears to be a standard ceramic body fuse.

I'm pretty sure this does not conform to IEC 61010. The 500 mA input is shared with the volt/Ohm jack, and is labeled CAT III 600 V. I doubt that this fuse is going to survive the transient dictated by IEC 61010 for a CAT III 600 V input. I believe IEC 61010 also states that the equipment should be safe, regardless of switch settings. So 600 V with a 4 kV (?) transient should be perfectly safe with the switch set to mA, but I wouldn't trust this fuse to interrupt 600 V, let alone 4 kV.

Of course the input is also labeled CAT I 250 V / 600 V, so you get free choice of which of the three standards you want to apply ;). Treating it as CAT I 250 V would probably be the only safe solution, although they somehow want you to believe that it can measure CAT III 600 V circuits.

So you can measure CAT III 600 V circuits, as long as it's not set to measure current. What's the most common reason of blown fuses again? Something about people accidentally measuring voltage while the meter is set to measure current?

Edit: never mind. According the data sheet, protection on resistance, diode/continuity, capacitance and frequency mode is also limited to 250 V. Treat this just like a CAT I 250 V meter, and ignore any other markings (I would take a sharpie and cross them out). It's just another meter with false safety claims. As if the Chinese brands like Uni-T weren't putting out enough of these already.

To the unsafe list of multimeters it goes!  :-DMM

Meters claiming CAT ratings they can't fully pass is just insane IMHO.  |O Unfortunately, so long as there's nothing to even make them think twice about such an act (financial penalties, time in prison if someone dies, ...), I don't see an end to this from unscrupulous manufacturers.  :'(


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