Author Topic: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter  (Read 1654 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline r00t

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 12
  • Country: us
Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« on: April 23, 2017, 06:28:45 am »
Okay, I stole the title from the classic EEVBlog # 66, and no, I didn't actually go canyoning or throwing it off a dam. However, I had the unfortunate experience of putting my Brymen 867 through some abuse and figured I'd share. I've had the Brymen for about a year and it's been decent, few minor annoyances like the short backlight, cheap feeling, meh probes, moderate accuracy, and long auto-range switching delay; it's always kind of been second-rate to my Fluke 289. A lot of people trust in the ruggedness and reliability of Fluke's over a cheaper but well-specd unit like the Brymen's, have heard it numerous times. These units do not have any stated waterproof rating, drop rating, has a softer/removable outer cover, and generally doesn't feel anywhere near as "solid" and thoroughly engineered as the Fluke. I haven't really come across anyone else testing these aspects of them so I figured I'd post my short story:

After a late night of working on one of our cars I accidentally left the multimeter on the roof of my wife's car and forgot about it. She left before I awoke and I had no chance of saving it...  :palm: First time I've goofed up like that. So I went out following her trip on foot, in hopes it went flying off the side of the road and survived. I ended up finding it a couple miles down the road on a small turn I know she takes at least 30mph. From the looks of it: It fell off the roof of her car and eventually ended up face down on the road, another than car ran over it (black rubber tire mark on the back), it looks like it just clipped the end of it ( where the probes plug in ), it shot out from under the tire and flew about 6ft off the road and landed face up in a ditch on the other side of the road that was semi-filled with water. Oh yeah, and it rained, all night (6+ hours). The only reason I think a car ran over it and the damage wasn't just from falling was because of the black rubber-ish mark on the back and the side of the road I found it was opposite to the direction it should've gone if turning into the curve.

Surprising the damage was very minimal. There was the black tire mark on the back that came off really easily, there was some good scratching/gouging I'm guessing happened when the car clipped it and it slid/shot out under it along the asphalt, the probes were squashed in on the end some (will probably replace), and there was some water/mud in the probe ports. The dirty probe ports prevented it from initially working (getting InnERR as it thought I had probes plugged into all the ports). I set to take it apart and found that it has rubber gaskets everywhere, the battery cover, the screw holes, the turn dial, and the whole main casing has gaskets. There wasn't a single drop off water, anywhere. No components were smashed/bent/ajar, nothing. The only thing I needed to do was clean out the probe ports, and it worked no problem. Accuracy was just as good as before.

Sorry I didn't take more pictures, it was an afterthought after I had already found the unit and cleaned it up some.

Pic of the unit showing the main scratches/damage:


Pic of the unit opened up showing no water infiltration or internal damage what-so-ever:


Pic of the unit cleaned up, shaved off the plastic burs, cleaned up with iso, colored in the scratches some:


I'm pretty impressed I must say. I was never too-happy with this purchase until now. Any other cheap multimeter likely would not have survived that. If it had happened to any of my fluke's I probably would've cried (I baby my tools, this was a really unusual event for me). So even though these aren't necessarily engineered to the same ruggedness as Fluke's or other high end meters, I fully trust this will survive ANY reasonable abuse that a multimeter could expect to be subjected to.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2017, 06:45:06 am by r00t »
 
The following users thanked this post: SeanB, nugglix, 1Ghz

Offline Hydrawerk

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 2382
  • Country: 00
Re: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2017, 05:07:59 pm »
Actually it was not a death but a little accident.  :)
Amazing machines. https://www.youtube.com/user/denha (It is not me...)
 

Offline r00t

  • Contributor
  • Posts: 12
  • Country: us
Re: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2017, 07:37:59 pm »
Dave never managed to kill his in the video, I figured it was similar enough to his video. He threw it out the car, mine fell off a car probably about the same speed. He submerged it while canyoning for a couple hours, mine was partially submerged/rained on for at least 6 hours. He threw his off a dam, mine got ran over by a car. Still pretty impressive for a cheap multimeter.
 

Online joeqsmith

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 5811
  • Country: us
Re: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2017, 07:52:56 pm »
Good story.

Strange as much as you dislike the meter,
Quote
I was never too-happy with this purchase
, it's the one you grab to do this job.  I think you left it on the roof on purpose in an attempt to get your wife to do your dirty work for you so you could get a new Fluke. I'm guessing it was your car that ran over the meter.  Your plan backfired.   :-DD :-DD 

In all seriousness, it does seem strange it was out of alignment by this much. 
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Offline apelly

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 1037
  • Country: nz
Re: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2017, 08:20:32 pm »
I've had the Brymen for about a year and it's been decent, few minor annoyances like the short backlight, cheap feeling, meh probes, moderate accuracy, and long auto-range switching delay; it's always kind of been second-rate to my Fluke 289.
Interesting.

I disagree with your comments about the cheap feel and accuracy. I agree about the probes, but standard Fluke probes are pretty, well, industrial too. Depending on where you buy them they ship with different types of probes I believe. Standard practice around here is to buy from Franky and ask for the nice gold probes. (which I think he includes by default anyway, but I could be wrong there)

In my opinion the (tiny) thing that makes these meters seem cheap is the screen printing on the face. It looks like it'll rub off if you look at it funny. Although it hasn't happened to any of mine. Yet.

I think they're superb value for money. Like most people, I only use my 289 if I specifically need it, or it's the only meter within 30 seconds of where I'm working.

I'm no shill, but I want to say that I've personally experienced exceptional and personal support from Brymen. They're doing a lot of things correctly, in my opinion.

Anyway, thanks for the write up, and I'm glad your meter is still OK. I'd wager that if you contact Brymen you'll be able to reach a satisfactory arrangement for a replacement front cover too!
I'd rather a Google clue, link, or some theory than "do this" (generally)
 

Offline james_s

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 9518
  • Country: us
Re: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2017, 08:26:40 pm »
I'm reminded a bit of when I once left a cordless phone (remember those?) on top of a car in the driveway while a few of us were hanging out goofing off. We hopped in the car to go to the store, stopped at the stop sign at the end of the street and saw a white object fly through the air and tumble across the street. Fortunately I was able to jump out and retrieve it before someone ran it over.
 

Online rsjsouza

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3460
  • Country: us
  • Eternally curious
    • Vbe - vídeo blog eletrônico
Re: Death & Destruction of a Brymen Multimeter
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2017, 09:29:00 pm »
Interesting story. My BM857 is pretty good in moisture/dust as well, judging by the rubber gaskets all around it - although I haven't subjected it to the same brutal accidental treatment as yours.

A similar occurrence happened with me, my dad's 1972 VW bug and a HP48SX inside its pouch. Fortunately it wasn't run over or ditched and it also survived.
Vbe - vídeo blog eletrônico http://videos.vbeletronico.com

Oh, the "whys" of the datasheets... The information is there not to be an axiomatic truth, but instead each speck of data must be slowly inhaled while carefully performing a deep search inside oneself to find the true metaphysical sense...
 


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf