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Hints, Tips and Solutions (Do NOT post requests for help here) If you have any useful general hints and tips for vintage technology repair and restoration, please share them here. PLEASE DO NOT POST REQUESTS FOR HELP HERE!

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Old 4th Dec 2019, 12:55 am   #41
The Philpott
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Default Re: Neon Tester Screwdrivers

I am slightly puzzled that i haven't ever seen any upgrades to the basic Neon Tester design. I was browsing on an IET forum earlier and saw that several bods had had similar thoughts, viz:

-Two (or perhaps even three) resistors of equal value in series, mitigating the effect of a resistor failing s/c (a rather unlikely failure)
This would make the tool bulkier, but it could still be acceptably small- especially compared to a voltpen.

- All the internal components potted in clear resin to exclude (as much as possible) accidental water ingress. Would this increase the energy of the shrapnel in the event of a explosive failure of the tester though..? Heading away from electrics towards ballistics here.

I can't really accept that the proliferation of 'better' testers would have halted development to the point where no-one took the opportunity to develop and improve.
....Or are there hidden consequences to the improvements i have suggested?

Dave
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Old 7th Dec 2019, 5:01 am   #42
Maarten
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Default Re: Neon Tester Screwdrivers

I think I've seen 2 resistors in series. I think they also use resistors that aren't likely to short or go low.
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Old 7th Dec 2019, 10:33 am   #43
raditechman
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Default Re: Neon Tester Screwdrivers

Vintage Engr mentioned
Quote:
BBC-2 colour test film, circa 1967/8
The film with Switch off Isolate Dump and Earth is called "On the Safe Side" It is available on YouTube.
John
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Old 7th Dec 2019, 3:15 pm   #44
vidjoman
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Default Re: Neon Tester Screwdrivers

Back in the late 1950’s I had a neon tester that had the screwdriver blade cut short and put the rest into a plastic tube, I think resistors came in the tubes, and it was therefore isolated. Used as a guide to tell if line output transformers were working. Only needed to get it within about 2-3 inches and it glowed without having to touch anything.
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Old Yesterday, 1:58 pm   #45
Andrew2
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Default Re: Neon Tester Screwdrivers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage Engr View Post
That's it, "Switch off, Isolate, Dump, & Earth"

Otherwise you'll be like the poor technician who returns to an H.V. installation, - from a dentist's appointment, only to find out too late that his colleague has reversed the connections of an inductor/capacitor circuit. Big bang!

Anyone remember the BBC-2 colour test film, circa 1967/8?
Sure do, it was one of my favourites and I always stopped work to watch. Mind you, a LOT of them were worth downing tools to watch.
In the TV trade at that time, it was common to wave a neon screwdriver near the line output stage to check if it was doing something. A pretty crude test, but it showed signs of life.
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