Author Topic: No-name vs. branded test leads  (Read 6083 times)

MJLorton

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No-name vs. branded test leads
« on: December 29, 2012, 08:20:57 AM »
A simple but revealing post...thanks to Mr Modemhead.

http://mrmodemhead.com/blog/no-name-vs-branded-test-leads/
Play, discover, learn and enjoy! (and don't be scared to make mistakes along the way!)

Kiriakos GR

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2012, 04:57:33 PM »
The true question is complying or not?  with the latest standards, and both cables fails to comply.
The cable should have white sleeve as first insulation and a second colored on the top.
Anything else is out of date and does comply since this March (2012).

SeanB

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2012, 11:23:06 PM »
No idea as to manufacturing date for either set, and it is likely that there will be stock of the old ones in the supply chain for a while yet. However the telling point is the current ratings claimed and the CSA of copper inside. I see many cables of origin questionable that claim a rating but which do not have the copper inside to back it up. Often they are barely half the copper required, or have such poor quality that they break easily with only minor use.

The difference in both copper content and insulation in these cables is telling, the left one is far more likely to have broken strands working through the insulation. Double insulation is more to allow detection of failure of the outer layer due to wear and abrasion before the thickness of insulation left is insufficient to allow standoff to the test voltage to be safe. It does not offer any much more protection against manufacturing defects and in fact can cover them ad lead to a false pass. Ideally these cables should be tested for defects between each coaxial extrusion to ensure there are no defects in the inner layer, but I would guess the lower cost manufacturers are loathe to add this extra cost step and only do a final check if at all other than a visual check.

For my part I am looking at making my own, using a cable with a rating more commensurate to the required use.  The last 3 pairs of short 4mm to 4mm leads I made are made from old cable and new connector ends, I have found a local supplier of some quite reasonable ends, that are reasonably strong and will accept a cable, while being stackable. They do cost more in materials, but are a much better item for my purposes. All I need to do is to get a source of good crocodile clip ends and make some.

ModemHead

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2012, 12:16:05 AM »
Both leads are at least 5-10 years old, maybe more. The Fluke TL75 lead came with a used eBay DMM and had damaged insulation, so I never used it.  The generic leads were in my junk box, I don't remember where I got them from, but they look exactly like these.

I did the cross-section purely out of curiosity, and found the results interesting.

Monkeh

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2012, 12:33:18 AM »
All I need to do is to get a source of good crocodile clip ends and make some.

Franky had some solid copper crocodile clips on his ebay store, they might suit you.

Kiriakos GR

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2012, 07:04:44 AM »
Double insulation is more to allow detection of failure of the outer layer due to wear and abrasion before the thickness of insulation left is insufficient to allow standoff to the test voltage to be safe.

That's corect, and by having such cables the advice of FLUKE  about to Inspect your leads prior using the meter, makes more sense now,
if you do have those new cables. 
I have buy such cables in Greece at the begining of 2012 ( electronics store in the capaital Athens).
I got three meters red and there meters black (0.60 Cents / m) ,  and their inner resistance are even better than the Fluke leads of 2011.

What looks hard to find is safety male bananas of marginal quality (shrouded).
Before few days (27 Dec) I got in my hands female safety banana (two pairs) from eBay.
I am 70% satisfied by their construction, but for the male ones I will do more advamced hunting, the most that I have see on eBay are unworthy cheap designs sold at redicules high prices. 
 

SeanB

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2012, 07:57:58 AM »
Shrouded male connectors are hard to fing unmade, I rarely see them, even though they do have good advantages. If possible I would like to get a few sets of the one Major Tech lead set I have, that came with an insulation tester. Those are very nice leads.

Kiriakos GR

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2012, 10:50:10 AM »
The succes when you do hunting on ebay, comes from the right key words.  :)
About quality I can find German made unmade ones, for an extreme price premium which I will avoid.
The market is that wide as your own view.  ;)

iloveelectronics

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2013, 02:37:41 AM »
All I need to do is to get a source of good crocodile clip ends and make some.

Franky had some solid copper crocodile clips on his ebay store, they might suit you.

Those have just been re-listed on my eBay store.
My eBay store: http://www.99centHobbies.com
Email: franky @ 99centHobbies . com

SeanB

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2013, 04:08:38 AM »
Send the 2 sets to Martin then, he will arrange for me to get one set and he will get one. I will pay him for them and then Martin will do the posting to me.

I really must look into getting a Paypal card from whichever bank is offering it locally, but it will prove expensive.........
« Last Edit: January 01, 2013, 04:10:39 AM by SeanB »

iloveelectronics

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #10 on: January 01, 2013, 05:39:38 AM »
Send the 2 sets to Martin then, he will arrange for me to get one set and he will get one. I will pay him for them and then Martin will do the posting to me.

I really must look into getting a Paypal card from whichever bank is offering it locally, but it will prove expensive.........

Will do. BTW, the SkyRC power meters you ordered should be with Martin now in case he hasn't notified you yet.
My eBay store: http://www.99centHobbies.com
Email: franky @ 99centHobbies . com

SeanB

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #11 on: January 01, 2013, 07:29:51 AM »
Stuck in Customs..............

Should be there next week, so I will have them soon. Looked at Paypal and they have changed, so will go to my bank and link my account, though i see what you mean by the rates and exchange conversions......... Steve makes a charge as well ( SA in joke for the bank concerned) on top of it all.

Kiriakos GR

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Re: No-name vs. branded test leads
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2013, 11:56:54 AM »
People for private messages there is special function in this forum..
I do not play  the moderator, I just wonder if the common sense still lives among us.