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#191968 - 01/21/10 05:50 PM Analog Clampmeters
KJay Offline

Registered: 11/27/07
Posts: 763
Loc: MA, USA
While recently looking for a replacement meter, I was a little surprised to discover how incredibly difficult it has become to find a decent, well made analog clampmeter these days.
After a fairly extensive search, the only viable one I could find was the Hioki 3127-10, which again surprised me, both because it is exactly what I used 20-plus years ago and is also still being made in Japan. [Holy Cow!].
It doesn't have the coveted and almost prerequisite CAT III rating, but since I previously managed to live through using this same meter on a daily basis for years, I dont feel that my life is in any imminent danger by using it.

I've, never been a big Amprobe RS fan, but I see they make a couple of rotary scale models, similar to their old RS meter, minus the funky old style locking test leads.
Other than that, it looks like there is only the cheap China and Taiwan import crap from UEI, Greenlee and a couple of other generic brands available.
I realize that digital meters are normally more accurate than analogs due to constant impedance when testing electronic components than analog meters, but I have to admit... sometimes for regular electrical troubleshooting work, I still like to see the needle swing of an analog meter.

Anyone else still like to occasionally use an analog meter for their general-purpose electrical testing needs?

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#191979 - 01/22/10 12:23 AM Re: Analog Clampmeters [Re: KJay]
Bill Addiss Offline

Registered: 10/07/00
Posts: 4196
Loc: NY, USA
There may be advantages to using a analog clamp meter in some situations.

According to Fluke/Amprobe... the RS-3 PRO (CAT IV Analog Clamp Meter) "works well in extreme temperatures of 32F to 5F, while digital clamp LCD screens tend to freeze"

It doesn't need batteries to measure Amps & Volts


#192020 - 01/23/10 11:31 AM Re: Analog Clampmeters [Re: Bill Addiss]
sparkyinak Offline

Registered: 07/08/07
Posts: 1288
Loc: Alaska
I use an analog amp clamp mainly because it is in my tool inventory. It comes in Handy when I am monitoring loads for an extended time and it will not shutoff or run a battery down
"Live Awesome!" - Kevin Carosa

#192024 - 01/23/10 01:14 PM Re: Analog Clampmeters [Re: sparkyinak]
frenchelectrican Offline


Registered: 02/06/03
Posts: 938
Loc: Wi/ Paris France { France for ...
I been using the analog clamp on meter alot and I used often on motor useage espcally with compressor motor I can able finetune and indentify if working properly and yeah ya don't need battery on this due it is self powered cool

Beside if on DC sytem then I have to use the digtail unit otherwise if you can get into shunt coil then it is not too bad.

Pas de problme,il marche n'est-ce pas?"(No problem, it works doesn't it?)

#192037 - 01/24/10 06:53 AM Re: Analog Clampmeters [Re: frenchelectrican]
Alan Belson Offline

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 1801
Loc: Mayenne N. France
When building my last Vegetable Oil burner [ ] I wanted to rate the electric 1500w heating elements to validate their power in experiments. I bought a clamp on ammeter, thinking that by measuring amps and volts at my triac I could measure the wattage. Some chance! The values indicated bore no resemblance to the amps drawn, being MILES off the true value and totally unrepeatable. I proved this by boiling a pound of water in a 2kw rated electric kettle, timing the experiment from a measured 60F to 212F and finding the btu. [1 btu = 1lb thro' 1F]. Conversion to kw showed the kettle was drawing about 8.5A @ 230v. The meter reading? 2 to 4A [sometimes]. bash
Wood work but can't!


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