Author Topic: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?  (Read 3646 times)

Offline Wedgeman55

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What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« on: October 16, 2012, 12:02:20 AM »
       Someone wanted to know about my meter bag and my meters.    I figured I'd just start another topic instead of continuing this in the Meter lead give-away topic.   
 
      Here is a picture of the bag I carry my meters in.    I like to walk in prepared.    I use a camera bag I got on sale for 2.99.   I keep a Fluke VOM,  a Supco VOM,  a Craftsman infrared Temp tester (good for testing items in a refrigerator to see how unit is cooling),  a Small clamp around meter,  one 110V plug in socket tester,  a craftsman 110V plug in that makes it easy to use clamp around and has a 10X feature for measuring small amperages,  a set of Micro test leads,  a temp tester, and a 110V test cord.     I also keep extra fuses for meters,  batteries,  a very small phillips,  several thermal fuses,  and my business cards and magnets.   
 
     Not pictured is my spare bag,  in which I have a large Fluke clamp around,  a Craftsman VOM Temp meter, another Infrared temp tester, a Breaker locater (plug one end in plug, go to fusebox to with tester to locate breaker), A stud finder, a Modular icemaker tester and several sets of new test leads.
 
     What kind of test meters do you other techs use?   
Commercial Laundry repair Tech and Installer  1973 to 1980
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Offline app1

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2012, 07:36:59 AM »
Hi Wedgemann55 I am the one that was wanting to know about the bag and its contents... very nice set up - you are ready for anything and this saves many,many trips back to the van to get another test instrument!!!! Great idea and I am going to use this idea and save some trips and equally as important is you will appear very professional when you walk in!!!! I like all the extra 110 cords as well, I need to really do this.......

Offline JWWebster

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2012, 07:40:54 AM »
Nice! You better hope that bag don't grow no legs. I left a hammer and pliers at a house once after having to remove a door to get an ice box inside a house. I remembered and went back to get em about 5 minutes later. Them dudes was already considered five finger discounts by the time I got back there. never saw em again. The old woman there told me her son was by there but he was long gone. And so was my tools.
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Offline AJ

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2012, 07:47:18 AM »
Nice, will have to post a photo of mine later.
Your meter with the four square button was the first Fluke meter I ever owned, nice meter.

My IR is also a Craftsman, but a lot older then yours, but its been a work horse and keeps on working.
Tried a Fluke IR once. It was much bigger then my Craftsman and I just found it to bulky. Ended up selling it to one of our forum members and went back to using the Craftsman IR.
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Offline bigbuck

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2012, 12:05:53 PM »
I been used to the fieldpeice, heres picture of it.

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Offline andersenappliance

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2012, 08:13:49 PM »
I use a fieldpiece also.  It's a different model.  My ammeter clamp attaches to my basic leads after removing the points.  It has a temp gauge and will check MFD's for capacitors.

It is a nice model, and seems to work really well.

I'm still not sure I'm aware of all the bells & whistles.  It was sold to me as "as good as a fluke" but cheaper.

"Cheaper"  Mmmm...good stuff.


Offline Wedgeman55

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2012, 10:34:37 PM »
I keep a couple of extra test cords in the truck for different purposes.     I'll try to shoot a pic of these and send them tomorrow.   
 
I've seen the fieldpiece up at the Electrical supply store.    Looks like a nice meter.   

JW, your right about tools growing legs.    A whole diffferent subject.  But.........I used to have a Milwalkee Hammer drill and a Milwalkee 4 inch cutoff saw.    I was in a not so desireable place in my town,  I set my bag with those 2 by the side door of my van on the sidewalk.   I was parked on the street in front of an apartment building downtown.   I went to the back of my van,  put in my regular tool box and couldn't have been there more than 2 minutes.    By the time I walked back to the side door,  the bag was gone.   I looked twice thinking I had already put it in,  but then it hit me - someone swiped it in that time.    I WAS STANDING RIGHT THERE>  an expensive lesson,   but .................I always keep an eye on things and try to never let them out of my sight.   

Reason I like the fluke  - pretty accurate,  nice all around meter.    I pull out the cheap Supco for simple continuity or voltage tests.    Sometimes,  in tight situations,  I would rather burn out a cheap meter than an expensive one.     I always stop by Sears once a week or so,  and am waiting for several of their meters to go on sale.    I have my eye on this one that is smaller but has a big display.  VOM and temperature.     When it goes on sale for 29.95,  I'm picking it up.   

and, I forgot about my old Amprobe clamp around.   I have had that sucker for at least 25 years,   and it works excellent.   I don't use it much anymore,  but it is in my truck under my drivers seat as a backup in case of emergency.   
Commercial Laundry repair Tech and Installer  1973 to 1980
Service Manager / Technician Commercial Laundry repair company 1980 to 2002
Refrigeration - HVAC - Boiler School 1974-1976
Electronic School 1978-1979
Self Employed Appliance Repair Company 2002 to present

Offline AJ

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #7 on: October 17, 2012, 04:19:19 PM »
Here are my meters.


The Fluke in the middle is my daily meter. I can check Caps and have a temp probe for it.


The Fluke on the left is my extra/spare meter.


The yellow clamp meter is really old, but I like it. It's a meter I grew up watching my dad use and it was give to my by my father 25 years ago.


The IR Thermometer is also really old. I'm guessing about 15-20 years old.


The Fluke voltage pen I won on Fluke facebook page. Don't use it much, but the price was right. :)


Now I'm really itching to buy a new IR Thermometer, lol...


Let's see some more meter porn guys, post your photos! :D
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Offline AJ

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2012, 04:57:46 PM »
Just ordered myself a Fluke 62 Mini IR Thermometer. After all it was bosses day yesterday and I never got myself anything. :D

I still remember the day I seen my first IR thermometer. My dad had purchased one and I found it to be simply amazing.
Still do find them pretty amazing yet. Much better then sticking a temp probe in something and waiting and waiting and waiting, lol...

Wedgeman55, what model is your Craftsman IR thermometer? About how long have you had it and what do you think of it?
Hope you find our site helpful.

Offline Wedgeman55

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2012, 02:34:45 AM »
I'll check and post model number on craftsman IR.  I know its range top limit is 1000 degrees.   They sell one good up to 1400 degrees,  but I think that's only needed for auto repair.    It's in my truck and I'm ready to hit the sack.    I'll tell you this,  I've had for at least 10 years.   Works great.    I also have a Cen-Tech Ir as a backup.   
 
AJ,  I also have an amprobe stick meter that you can just place against a wire to see voltage.   or amperage.  Bought this about 20 years ago, pretty cool but for some reason I don't use it much.   I found an old Sperry clamparound ampmeter in my garage the other day that's at least 30 years old.   I have a real old amprobe that still works like new.   Somewhere in my garage,  I have a 3 temp probe temp tester I used to use for refrigeration.    Haven't found it yet.    I'll get all of these together soon and post a picture.    I'm a meter junkie.    Over the years,  I have purchased dozens of them,  always looking for something that can do the job better.   
 
Today,  had to check a 5 year old GE topload washer.   The coil was bad on the shifter assembly,  and the micro meter leads from the Radio shack kit come through again.    Fit right into those micro plugs.    Love those little leads!    No Applinace repairman should be without them.    If any of you don't have them,  get them.    Only way to check certain things.     Also,  keep a pack of push-pins in with your meter,  they come in handy too.   
 
I also have a TIFF gas sniffer for testing gas leaks,   and CO for funaces.  (I still do some clean and checks and furnace repairs)    Gas sniffer saves me a lot of time.   Used it last month for a gas leak in stove.   Turns out it had a leak right by one of the burner valves,   and would have been impossible to pinpoint if I didn't have that meter.    I'll post a picture soon.   
 
 
Commercial Laundry repair Tech and Installer  1973 to 1980
Service Manager / Technician Commercial Laundry repair company 1980 to 2002
Refrigeration - HVAC - Boiler School 1974-1976
Electronic School 1978-1979
Self Employed Appliance Repair Company 2002 to present

Offline AJ

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #10 on: October 18, 2012, 09:39:23 AM »
Quote
I'll check and post model number on craftsman IR.  I know its range top limit is 1000 degrees.   They sell one good up to 1400 degrees,  but I think that's only needed for auto repair.

One thing I have noticed on a lot of IR thermometers that are under $100 is the low end cuts off at 0 Deg. F.
For what I use it for the high end is not such a big deal as I'm just checking to see if something is getting hot or not, such as a defrost heater for example.

On the low end I could say something similar, thing that I'm just using the IR thermometer to see if something is starting to cool or not.
But when I'm trying to show the customer that the freezer side of there refrigerator is cold enough I don't think it impresses them so much when my IR thermometer does  not display a reading because the freezer is just below 0 Deg. F. and my IR thermometer cuts out at 0. Then I have to explain to them why that is, lol...

I think one thing I will like on the Fluke 62 mini I order besides the size of the unit is the low end of the temp range as it goes from -20 to 932 Deg. F.

I like to show my customers the IR thermometer. I think it's easier for them to understand that a defrost heater is working when they see the temp reading vs a clamp on amp meter, or a dryer is heating, hidden bake element is now working, compressor temps before and after cleaning coils, etc...

All simple things for us to understand or to check different and/or better ways, but a quick visual reading with a IR thermometer is something my customers just seem to like.

Here is a meter I think would make a great replacement for my everyday Fluke and old analog clamp meter.
http://www.fluke.com/Fluke/usen/Clamp-Meters/Fluke-902.htm?PID=56151

Voltage AC/DC
Curent AC/DC
Resistance
Continuity
Temperature (Type K Thermocouple)
Capacitance
Hope you find our site helpful.

Offline Wedgeman55

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2012, 01:37:20 AM »
AJ, model of my IR craftsman is 50466  -  It's range is -58 to 1000 degrees.    I do use it all the time in freezers.   On Ge refrigerators with the boards,  when unit goes into pre-chill before defrost,  I have caught it and registered temps of -15 to -25 degrees in the freezer.    It Really works great.   One thing I have found,  don't let battery's get too worn.    Replace often  I always keep 2 or 3 extra 9 volt batteries in my meter case.   
 
I agree with you,  I like to show customer what's going on and the IR helps deliver.    I actually had 2 of these IR's (I bought them years ago on sale at sears) but somehow the 2nd one either grew legs or it's somewhere in my garage and if you saw my garage,  you would understand why it might take days, weeksmonths,  I mean YEARS to find where it is.   Who knows.............one day,  I might actually find the second one I had.   
 
AJ, damn you, you had to show me a picture of that fluke.   Now I want it.   It does everything.   I saw that exact meter at the sears by us.   I didn't really look too good at it,  but now I'm gonna check it out this weekend.    Might just have to add it to my collection.    I like it.   
 
Here are the pics of the rest of my meters.    A fluke clamparound (older model but works excellent), Amprobe,  amprobe stick (non contact volt - amp meter), A Centech VOM (in black case),  test leads,  test cords,  a little Radio shack non digital VOM with Clamp around amp attachment
Commercial Laundry repair Tech and Installer  1973 to 1980
Service Manager / Technician Commercial Laundry repair company 1980 to 2002
Refrigeration - HVAC - Boiler School 1974-1976
Electronic School 1978-1979
Self Employed Appliance Repair Company 2002 to present

Offline Wedgeman55

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2012, 01:46:22 AM »
Heres a couple of my other test equipment and tools - My Tiff gas / CO sniffer.    Comes in handy when customer complaints about gas leaks,   CO testers going off from stove,   etc.    You can show customer how an open burner flame produces CO and make them understand.     
 
Also,  my Craftsman Electric impact gun.   I have a full set of impact sockets,  plus the two big sockets to the left fit the Speed Queen Washer nut and the GE Profile nut.    Works great,   way, way better than a spanner wrench and beating on that thing for a half an hour before breaking nut off.   
 
Also,  my little compressor.    I have a blow gun attachment and use it to blow out motors,  lint in dryers,  Use it alot on big commercial dryers to blow out Drop coin units and control panels.   
Commercial Laundry repair Tech and Installer  1973 to 1980
Service Manager / Technician Commercial Laundry repair company 1980 to 2002
Refrigeration - HVAC - Boiler School 1974-1976
Electronic School 1978-1979
Self Employed Appliance Repair Company 2002 to present

Offline Wedgeman55

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2012, 01:54:34 AM »
Heres a brighter picture of the impact gun
 
also, my last straggler meter.    I keep this one in Steamer bag with a couple of tools.   Sometimes,  I just grab that bag and don't need to take in my regular tool box.    In the bag,  I also keep an assortment of defrost stats,  timers,  soldierless terminals,  wire,  etc.   If I get a call for a refrigerator leaking into the fresh food,   I just walk in with this bag.   
 
That wraps up my meters.   Until................I buy that Fluke this weekend .   Maybe. ..............
Commercial Laundry repair Tech and Installer  1973 to 1980
Service Manager / Technician Commercial Laundry repair company 1980 to 2002
Refrigeration - HVAC - Boiler School 1974-1976
Electronic School 1978-1979
Self Employed Appliance Repair Company 2002 to present

Offline AJ

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Re: What's in your bag? What kind of test meters do you have?
« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2012, 08:28:18 AM »
Quote
AJ, model of my IR craftsman is 50466  -  It's range is -58 to 1000 degrees.


Well that's interesting, because I was looking at that one to before I went ahead and ordered the Fluke 62 mini, but ordered the Fluke because this is what the sears site said about it's range.

Quote
Measures from 0 to 1000 deg. F or -18 to 538 deg. C with 2% accuracy

http://www.sears.com/craftsman-infrared-thermometer/p-03450466000P?prdNo=1&blockNo=1&blockType=G1

Just this morning when looking at it again I notice the link for the owners manual. In the owner manual it says, -58 to 1000

Carp! Now I want it, lol...

I may just have to get that one too.
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