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interested in any link or links for an electrical probe tester

Posted on 2014-11-05
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Last Modified: 2014-11-09
Hello and Good Afternoon Everyone

              I noticed an interesting looking gadget used by an electrician the other day which apparently test  various wires and parts for outputted current and voltage.   This testing instrument was about the length and size of an ink pen, perhaps a little rounder.  I did notice when he touched one end of the instrument to the electrical wire, it reacted like a probe and produced an audible repeated beep sound.  When the switch was turned off, the wire being tested failed to produce this audible beep.  Unfortunately, I was not close enough to this probing instrument to gather more details about it.  

                Given this information, I am wondering if someone perhaps knows what this instrument is and provide some link or links to check it out.  It looks like it would come in very handy when it comes to troubleshooting electrical wires and components.  

                 Any information or feedback given in reply to this search will be greatly appreciated.

                 Thank you

                  George
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Question by:GMartin
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☠ MASQ ☠ earned 200 total points
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Hi George, I'm guessing one of these ...?
Power tester
There are loads of similar examples online, eg:
http://www.amazon.com/Extech-40130-Non-contact-Voltage-Detector/dp/B0039F1NS6
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by:dbrunton
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Or was it a wire tracer?

See http://www.amazon.com/Sperry-Instruments-ET64220-Tracker-Tracer/dp/B00279JLBQ for an example.

Used for tracking wires behind walls or identifying one wire amongst many.  You have to plug an adapter into one end of the wire before using and then you can then track where the wire goes.
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by:garycase
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Hi George,

From the shape of it, I suspect you're talking about a simple non-contact detector, such as the one MASQ noted above.    These are indeed very handy -- I have one of these in my "gadgets" box, along with a couple other neat electrical tools.    Another very handy gadget along these same lines is a circuit finder -- you plug it into any outlet, then there's a sensor that will let you identify any other outlets on the same circuit or (the most useful) find the specific circuit breaker that controls that circuit.    [ http://www.amazon.com/Sperry-CS550A-Circuit-Breaker-Finder/dp/B000ET403A/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1415223439&sr=8-9&keywords=circuit+breaker+finder ]

A tracker [like DBrunton referenced] works along the same principle, but is designed for data lines ... where you can "inject" a signal and then use a probe to locate it => very handy for finding specific wires in Cat-5, Cat-6, or other data runs.
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by:GMartin
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Hello and Good Afternoon Everyone,

              Thanks so much for the excellent replies and links provided in response to my question.  After reviewing everything, the link http://www.amazon.com/Extech-40130-Non-contact-Voltage-Detector/dp/B0039F1NS6 given by Masq certainly matches what I remember the electrician using during his testing.  At this point, I do have a followup question regarding the Rapid Volt Finder.  Could someone provide a link or links which discuss the proper use of this testing instrument?  What I have in mind is something along the lines of tutorial links.

               In the meantime, I went ahead and ordered  the Rapid Volt Finder last night using the link of
http://www.amazon.com/Extech-40130-Non-contact-Voltage-Detector/dp/B0039F1NS6 given by Masq.

                 George
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by:dbrunton
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The instruction manual is here.  If you read it and compare it to these reviews here you'll find they all work fairly much the same.  The Youtube links don't cover your unit but operation of all seems to be much the same.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUw79RJMj-g

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8y8yMtvpPeM
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by:GMartin
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Hello and Good Morning Everyone,

             Thanks so much for the shared insights and resourceful links given in reply to my question.  After carefully reviewing all of the feedback, the Amazon link provided by Masq matches exactly to what I recall the electrician using at my house.  This non-contact voltage tester was ordered the other day and is expected to arrive this upcoming week.  

             The youtube links did a great job illustrating the use and practical applications for any non-contact voltage tester.  These are certainly a must for anyone like myself wanting to use voltage testers to troubleshoot electrial concerns around the house.  

             Thanks again everyone for your help.

             George
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