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Old 09-05-2009, 03:01 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by BadSplice View Post
I've been using my Fluke T5 for many, many years. It's one tester that will do continuity, current, and give me a real voltage measurement. It's made for the construction site and costs about $90.
The T5 is a great tool, BUT it still can't do a few tests that the wiggy (or traditional solenoid tester) can do.

A ghost voltage can occur when several wires are ran together for a distance. If a live wire is ran together with a dead wire in a conduit run, that dead wire will pick up voltage from the live wire. Those wires ran together act like a big capacitor, and the voltage couples into the dead wire. If you put a Fluke T5, or any DMM, on that dead wire, you will read voltage. That is because DMM's , and the T5, have a very high input impedance, and draw almost no current from the voltage they are measuring. Since you draw no current, you read that coupled (ghost) voltage on the "dead" wire. The solenoid tester has a input impedance of around 10,000 ohms, so it will draw about 12 milliamps off the voltage it is measuring. It puts a good "load" on the circuit. Since that ghost voltage has no ability to supply the current the solenoid tester needs, you will not measure that ghost voltage. That is why a solenoid tester is a good tool to determine live circuits, and is still used by so many people.

The many references to construction is because you have ghost voltages all over the place. When you are pulling new wire, and looking for live wires, there are good chances there are a few dead ones in the group. I want to know for sure which are live, and which are not, and the T5 will not do that for me. Some DMM's like the Fluke 117 have a low Z setting to eliminate ghost voltages, and those can be used. But, it easier to use the wiggy.

Another advantage of a wiggy is testing GFCI outlets. Since they draw about 12 mA, they will trip a good GFCI outlet if you measure between hot and ground. If the outlet does not trip with a wiggy, it is defective.

So, solenoid testers DO have their place in construction. It not about how much money you spent, or how big your tool is.
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:01 PM   #22
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NEMA recommends the use of low impedance meters. I carry a Fluke T+.
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:09 PM   #23
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Never used a wiggy, never will. For LV testing I use Fluke 87 series multimeters.
Sounds like you don't even trust a CAT-III rated solenoid tester??
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Old 09-05-2009, 03:35 PM   #24
 
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Originally Posted by Voltage Hazard View Post
The T5 is a great tool, BUT it still can't do a few tests that the wiggy (or traditional solenoid tester) can do.

A ghost voltage can occur when several wires are ran together for a distance. If a live wire is ran together with a dead wire in a conduit run, that dead wire will pick up voltage from the live wire. Those wires ran together act like a big capacitor, and the voltage couples into the dead wire. If you put a Fluke T5, or any DMM, on that dead wire, you will read voltage. That is because DMM's , and the T5, have a very high input impedance, and draw almost no current from the voltage they are measuring. Since you draw no current, you read that coupled (ghost) voltage on the "dead" wire. The solenoid tester has a input impedance of around 10,000 ohms, so it will draw about 12 milliamps off the voltage it is measuring. It puts a good "load" on the circuit. Since that ghost voltage has no ability to supply the current the solenoid tester needs, you will not measure that ghost voltage. That is why a solenoid tester is a good tool to determine live circuits, and is still used by so many people.

The many references to construction is because you have ghost voltages all over the place. When you are pulling new wire, and looking for live wires, there are good chances there are a few dead ones in the group. I want to know for sure which are live, and which are not, and the T5 will not do that for me. Some DMM's like the Fluke 117 have a low Z setting to eliminate ghost voltages, and those can be used. But, it easier to use the wiggy.

Another advantage of a wiggy is testing GFCI outlets. Since they draw about 12 mA, they will trip a good GFCI outlet if you measure between hot and ground. If the outlet does not trip with a wiggy, it is defective.

So, solenoid testers DO have their place in construction. It not about how much money you spent, or how big your tool is.
I'm sure everyone here knows about phantom voltages possibly tricking a MM, that's why I keep an old Klein Wiggy in the truck (right next to the wire stretcher and blinker fluid). In all my years I never had an issue in which I had to go out and get the Wiggy...

As for testing GFI's, that's what receptacle testers are for. They cost about $8 and they are much faster than using a tester with leads, especially when you have a couple hundred (or thousand) receptacles to test.
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Old 09-05-2009, 04:04 PM   #25
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I'm sure everyone here knows about phantom voltages possibly tricking a MM, ...
Don't be so sure. Seldom does very much time pass by where a question related to the so-called 'phantom voltage' doesn't arise.
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Old 09-05-2009, 05:16 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by BadSplice View Post
I'm sure everyone here knows about phantom voltages possibly tricking a MM, that's why I keep an old Klein Wiggy in the truck (right next to the wire stretcher and blinker fluid). In all my years I never had an issue in which I had to go out and get the Wiggy...

As for testing GFI's, that's what receptacle testers are for. They cost about $8 and they are much faster than using a tester with leads, especially when you have a couple hundred (or thousand) receptacles to test.
I'm not even a electrician and I've ran into "ghost voltage" several times!

As much as I hate to repeat this statement but the "only" approved way to test a GFCI is the using the test button. UL says that there is no such thing as a GFCI tester. In fact, I'll bet there is a note included with your $8 GFCI tester about this. I have a Ideal Suretest 61-165 which has the note included.
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Old 09-05-2009, 06:15 PM   #27
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Any good troubleshooter should recognize the situations were "phantom" voltages would be a factor. Inductive voltage on wires grouped together would be more likely than capacitive coupling. Capacitive coupling should, in theory charge up to the source voltage. Inductive will produce a few volts on the “dead” conductors. Even a high impedance meter would be enough to discharge a capacitive charge and if you have a bar graph on the meter you will even see the 5 time constant beat as it discharges like any capacitor.
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Old 09-05-2009, 06:21 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by BadSplice View Post
I'm sure everyone here knows about phantom voltages possibly tricking a MM, that's why I keep an old Klein Wiggy in the truck (right next to the wire stretcher and blinker fluid). In all my years I never had an issue in which I had to go out and get the Wiggy...

As for testing GFI's, that's what receptacle testers are for. They cost about $8 and they are much faster than using a tester with leads, especially when you have a couple hundred (or thousand) receptacles to test.
Really?

Is that why the original poster asked why wiggys still had a use? He does not know much about ghost voltages, because he asked if a TRMS meter was for that, and they are totally unrelated.

I also know that many people use a $8 GFCI cube, but there are many users of this board that use a wiggy for that too. I remember seeing a poll where like 60% of wiggy users tested GFCI with them. I don't care if it the "right way", or not. I'm just saying it's done.

Not everyone on this board is as smart as you. There are a lot of newb's who come here looking for answers. I am new to this group, and try to answer when I can. If you are old enough to have a Klein wiggy, maybe you're just a grumpy old man.
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Old 09-05-2009, 07:11 PM   #29
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With almost thirty years in the trade, I grab a wiggy first for simple power trouble shooting. It vibrates, it shows what the voltage is doesnt need batteries, and the new one I just got has a continuity indicator. Anything more than that I break out the lab coat and the Fluke.
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Old 09-05-2009, 07:25 PM   #30
 
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Really?

Is that why the original poster asked why wiggys still had a use? He does not know much about ghost voltages, because he asked if a TRMS meter was for that, and they are totally unrelated.

I also know that many people use a $8 GFCI cube, but there are many users of this board that use a wiggy for that too. I remember seeing a poll where like 60% of wiggy users tested GFCI with them. I don't care if it the "right way", or not. I'm just saying it's done.

Not everyone on this board is as smart as you. There are a lot of newb's who come here looking for answers. I am new to this group, and try to answer when I can. If you are old enough to have a Klein wiggy, maybe you're just a grumpy old man.
Woah dude, you challenged me, I simply replied to your post. No need to be so snobby, pull those panties out and get back to work
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Old 09-05-2009, 07:29 PM   #31
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I'm not even a electrician and I've ran into "ghost voltage" several times!

As much as I hate to repeat this statement but the "only" approved way to test a GFCI is the using the test button. UL says that there is no such thing as a GFCI tester. In fact, I'll bet there is a note included with your $8 GFCI tester about this. I have a Ideal Suretest 61-165 which has the note included.
You're thinking of AFCI's not GFCI's. The Ideal Suretest 61-165 is an AFCI tester.

You most certainly can test a GFCI with a solenoid tester, a receptacle tester, a GFCI tester, or my personal choice the Fluke T+ Pro.
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Old 09-05-2009, 09:24 PM   #32
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Sounds like you don't even trust a CAT-III rated solenoid tester??
No, I just dont use LV meters much, the 87 does everything I would need it to do. I have tested hundreds of GFI's but never a GFCI, never done resi work.
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Old 09-05-2009, 10:54 PM   #33
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You're thinking of AFCI's not GFCI's. The Ideal Suretest 61-165 is an AFCI tester.

You most certainly can test a GFCI with a solenoid tester, a receptacle tester, a GFCI tester, or my personal choice the Fluke T+ Pro.
Nope, the SureTest 61-165 tester has a GFCI and AFCI function. The GFCI tester thingy has been banged around in other furums and most everybody just states what UL says, no such thing as a GFCI tester along with their only approved test is to use its built in test button. A GFCI can be used on circuits without a ground wire. Try using your GFCI tester on that. It won't trip because it needs a ground to function. They can't simulate a true current imbalance which the test button does.
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Old 09-05-2009, 11:57 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Voltage Hazard View Post
Really?

Is that why the original poster asked why wiggys still had a use? He does not know much about ghost voltages, because he asked if a TRMS meter was for that, and they are totally unrelated.

I also know that many people use a $8 GFCI cube, but there are many users of this board that use a wiggy for that too. I remember seeing a poll where like 60% of wiggy users tested GFCI with them. I don't care if it the "right way", or not. I'm just saying it's done.

Not everyone on this board is as smart as you. There are a lot of newb's who come here looking for answers. I am new to this group, and try to answer when I can. If you are old enough to have a Klein wiggy, maybe you're just a grumpy old man.
But all "Wiggys" are made by Square D
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Old 09-06-2009, 12:03 AM   #35
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I've had all three neons light up on a cube.. Seems they don't tell you what that means?

In my case it was a isolated ground circuit where the ground had be removed at the source and there were a few computers plugged into the same circuit that apparently had leakage to ground.
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Old 09-06-2009, 12:08 AM   #36
 
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But all "Wiggys" are made by Square D
My Klein says "Wiggy" right at the top.
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Old 09-06-2009, 12:15 AM   #37
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My Klein says "Wiggy" right at the top.
Hmmm.. Than I am guessing someone bought someone out or the rights to the name.
My Square D Wiggys are an antique from the 60s.
I keep them at home as Ideal Volcon is my choice these days.

http://www.squared.com/us/products/machine_safety.nsf/unid/58870E11543C976885256D500050927B/$file/wiggy.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solenoid_voltmeter
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Last edited by Toronto Sparky; 09-06-2009 at 12:29 AM.
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Old 09-06-2009, 12:18 AM   #38
 
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Hmmm.. Than I am guessing someone bought someone out or the rights to the name.
My Square D Wiggys are an antique from the 60s.
I keep them at home as Ideal Volcon is my choice these days.
I've seen the same thing as mine with a Square D symbol on it, Klein must have bought it like they do with so many of their tools. Have you been in a Home Depot lately? They only sell Klein now, no more Greenlee. However, every single tool Greenlee tool that they used to sell now has a Klein package around it. It's still the exact same tool but with the Klein name and sometimes a different color. These are all tools that Klein didn't make before.

Quote:
http://www.squared.com/us/products/machine_safety.nsf/unid/58870E11543C976885256D500050927B/$file/wiggy.htm
Yeah, that's the Klein.
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Old 09-06-2009, 09:15 AM   #39
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I've seen the same thing as mine with a Square D symbol on it, .
Sure you don't mean the Class II (Double Insulated) symbol?



Looks a lot like Square D

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Old 09-06-2009, 09:20 AM   #40
 
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Sure you don't mean the Class II (Double Insulated) symbol?



Looks a lot like Square D

No, both Square D and Klein made/make the same exact model Wiggy.

Check out Toronto Sparky's links.
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