Inexpensive voltmeter - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-13-2012, 09:58 AM   #29
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There is quite the snipe hunt going based on readings from one of these. My guess is these are so cheap because they are being dumped. They didn't meet spec. and to avoid taking a complete loss they are sold at a low price. I suspect that's the case with a lot of the off shore electronics on ebay. What's that the Romans said, caveat emptor? Raz
Keep in mind that if a north american retailer were to sell this product they would have to tripple the price to make a profit. By the time you add in your imprting costs, administrative costs, packaging costs, and retail overhead, the $2 chinese electronic item is going to have a retail price tag that is much higher. Somebody in china can get a box of these at cost and sell them out of his basement with almost no overhead.

Derek
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:59 AM   #30
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Yes, I installed one of these, even with my solar controller reading output, the audible alarm is nice.
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:01 AM   #31
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A Fluke is cheaper. You must get a discount.
Actually, I don't own one, but it is on my Christmas list....hint....hint.
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:05 AM   #32
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Ya, But

If you have the dealer fix it. it gets fixed one time, if you buy the meter, you can learn how to fix that and other problems for years in the future.

I think I recall someone talking about teaching someone how to fish....

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That's true, but for the price of a Fluke, he could just drop it off at the dealer and have it analyzed / fixed.
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:35 AM   #33
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Many eBay sellers don't have to have any any stock on hand to sell Chinese stuff.

There is an Ebay LED seller that sent me some LED's that had defective bases (6 out of 15). He told me to ship them all back to "His Warehouse" in Corona, CA for a complete refund. In that I drive through Corona 2-3 times a week I elected to just drop them off. Here's what happened.

1. His warehouse was a fairly large concrete building with no company names whatsoever on the outside and the doors to the "Office" area were blocked with locked gates
2. I found an open door at a loading dock and went inside. The building seemed stacked floor to roof with boxes with chinese & english markings
3. A chinese (only) speaking worker directed me to see Mr. Tim in a nearby workroom.
4. The workrom was stacked high with even more boxes and about 20 women, all working at terminals and packing smaller shipping boxes with lamps and other items. The languages of choice seemd to be spanish and chinese only.
5. I found Mr. Tim and explained that I had some defective lamps to returns. He only asked "How Many?" and hand wrote me a receipt for the 15 lamps I was returning. I tried to show him the enclosed paperwork and he told me that they were only a fulfilment center for about 25 different eBay sellers, and to send a copy of the receipt to the person I had bought the lamps from and I would get a refund. When I tried to tell him which lamps were defective he said "No Problem" and tossed the entire order into a nearby trash can. (If they stayed there after I left, I have no idea)
6. I Sent a copy of the handwritten receipt to the seller and got a prompt refund.

As this particular seller (kunkunh2009) has over 113,000 eBay transactions recorded, it's no small basment business.
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Old 12-13-2012, 11:57 AM   #34
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Many eBay sellers don't have to have any any stock on hand to sell Chinese stuff.

There is an Ebay LED seller that sent me some LED's that had defective bases (6 out of 15). He told me to ship them all back to "His Warehouse" in Corona, CA for a complete refund. In that I drive through Corona 2-3 times a week I elected to just drop them off. Here's what happened.

1. His warehouse was a fairly large concrete building with no company names whatsoever on the outside and the doors to the "Office" area were blocked with locked gates
2. I found an open door at a loading dock and went inside. The building seemed stacked floor to roof with boxes with chinese & english markings
3. A chinese (only) speaking worker directed me to see Mr. Tim in a nearby workroom.
4. The workrom was stacked high with even more boxes and about 20 women, all working at terminals and packing smaller shipping boxes with lamps and other items. The languages of choice seemd to be spanish and chinese only.
5. I found Mr. Tim and explained that I had some defective lamps to returns. He only asked "How Many?" and hand wrote me a receipt for the 15 lamps I was returning. I tried to show him the enclosed paperwork and he told me that they were only a fulfilment center for about 25 different eBay sellers, and to send a copy of the receipt to the person I had bought the lamps from and I would get a refund. When I tried to tell him which lamps were defective he said "No Problem" and tossed the entire order into a nearby trash can. (If they stayed there after I left, I have no idea)
6. I Sent a copy of the handwritten receipt to the seller and got a prompt refund.

As this particular seller (kunkunh2009) has over 113,000 eBay transactions recorded, it's no small basment business.
I guess I'm missing your point. Is it the Chinese or Spanish speaking workers that bothered you? Do you think that Walmart sells products made by high paid Americans using a well paid and well benefited staff?

When you by cheap Chinese stuff, you take the good with the bad. If you want high quality stuff, deal with a local bricks and mortar store and pay the price. If you want cheap, buy off eBay, and take your chances.
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Old 12-13-2012, 12:11 PM   #35
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We all can agree that Tom and Bob have different perspectives on this matter, now back to your regularly scheduled broadcasting.....
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Old 12-13-2012, 12:36 PM   #36
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We all can agree that Tom and Bob have different perspectives on this matter, now back to your regularly scheduled broadcasting.....
Geeze, I wish someone would post a new question on this forum so we don't have to burn up nervous energy quibbling over points of view and technical minutia.

How about "How do I pack my wheel bearings? Or, "Is silicon caulk the best sealant for all my leaks?"
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Old 12-13-2012, 01:57 PM   #37
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If you want high quality stuff, deal with a local bricks and mortar store and pay the price. If you want cheap, buy off eBay, and take your chances.
That's the problem. You can't buy the high quality stuff. As Derek points out, the same junk is now at the brick and mortar stores, just three times the price at Walmart and four times at the local mom and pop. Try buying a new toaster. You know one that will actually toast a piece of bread. Raz
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Old 12-13-2012, 02:21 PM   #38
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I guess I'm missing your point. Is it the Chinese or Spanish speaking workers that bothered you? Do you think that Walmart sells products made by high paid Americans using a well paid and well benefited staff?

When you by cheap Chinese stuff, you take the good with the bad. If you want high quality stuff, deal with a local bricks and mortar store and pay the price. If you want cheap, buy off eBay, and take your chances.
*applause*

I think it comes down to expectations. Most of the tools you buy in stores like Harbour Freight and Princess Auto. If you buy a yellow label product from ebay or from a place like this, you do so knowing its economy brand stuff. It will probably work most of the time. If you need it for heavy duty or commercial use, forget about it. Don't buy a Yugo and expect it to perform like a Mercedes. That said, both will get you where you need to go. I think the same is true with these volt meters.

One thing I have wondered about these is $2.50 volt meters is how much current they are drawing to take their readings. I have a hunch that it may be higher then we expect. For someone surviving on a pair of golf cart batteries, every watt counts. Has anyone done any experimenting?
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Old 12-13-2012, 04:27 PM   #39
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Can't tell you about the less expensive meters under discussion, but, as of 5 minutes ago, the voltminder in my Coleman was drawing something just over .01 amps as measured with a DC ampclamp meter. That's probably less loss than charge decay through the plates.
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Old 12-13-2012, 04:47 PM   #40
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One thing I have wondered about these is $2.50 volt meters is how much current they are drawing to take their readings. I have a hunch that it may be higher then we expect. For someone surviving on a pair of golf cart batteries, every watt counts. Has anyone done any experimenting?
I measured 10 milliamperes, but that is using my cheap Chinese Harbor Freight multimeter.
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Old 12-13-2012, 04:58 PM   #41
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Can't tell you about the less expensive meters under discussion, but, as of 5 minutes ago, the voltminder in my Coleman was drawing something just over .01 amps as measured with a DC ampclamp meter. That's probably less loss than charge decay through the plates.
That's 10 mA. A good voltmeter (multimeter) will have an FET input and draw between 10^-9 (nano amps) and 10^-15 (femto amps). A good rule of thumb for input impedance is 10 gigaohms. Drawing current effects the accuracy of the readings hence the desire for a high input impedance. Raz
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Old 12-13-2012, 05:00 PM   #42
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That's 10 mA. I suspect you are reading noise. A good voltmeter (multimeter) will have an FET input and draw between 10^-9 (nano amps) and 10^-15 (femto amps). A good rule of thumb for input impedance is 10 gigohm. Raz
Is that enough to light the LED display?
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