Need multimeter: Do inexpensive ones allow testing through insulated wire?



OK! Lots of good tips here. Thanks all!
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To please a couple of the more pedantic characters in this thread, in the interest of full disclosure I thought I'd explain how it is I am hardly inexperienced.
I am installing a light fixture. When I took the old light fixture off I noticed in the ceiling that there was a black wire that came in and was tied to another black wire that continued the run. From my DC days I know the black wire to be ground, so I spliced into it and attached the light's green wire.
I think the fixture is faulty because when I connected it's white wire to the white wire in the ceiling I felt a little funny. But my circuit breaker is also faulty because it threw right away. Downstairs I couldn't get the breaker to stay in one position, it was that worn, so I put a self-tapping screw direction through the top of the switch to hold in the on position.
Light works! But buzzes & flickers horribly. Lots of noise in the breaker box too. I'm blaming the switch upstairs....it's the only thing left. I know that it isn't a 3 way switch because it only goes two positions, so I'm not quite sure what is going on here. I can't even guess what the red wire up there is for.
There's always some wire left behind in all my installations....you know how it is.
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"Thomas G. Marshall" wrote:

Green is safety ground & black is hot, not ground. The green is never to be used to connect anything other than the frame of the fixtures, outlets or switches.
White is neutral, black is hot, green is safety ground. Your conections are in violation of the electrical code, and could kill someone.
The two black wires connected in the box allowed the AC line to continue to the switch, and return on another wire, which is likely white, but should be marked red or any color other than green or white.
Its no wonder your breaker is tripping.
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news:976bd300-7f77-402a-bfc4-

Sorry to say, but based on your adventures below, you are not only very inexperienced but worse, you are applying what knowledge you have incorrectly. You really shouldn't be playing with this stuff.

That is horribly WRONG!

As in you felt a shock??

No, it's probably just doing it's job! I do hope you have an earth leakage circuit breaker installed too. If not you should get an electrician to install one, it could save your life.

OMG, you are seriously asking for trouble.

Then seriously you should not be touching this stuff, it will kill you and/or your family. Get an electrican in to fix it all and install an earth leakage circuit breaker.

No, no one who knows what they are doing "knows how it is".
Dave.
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I rest my case. What research did you perform before you put a self tapping screw in your breaker to hold it CLOSED? What research did you perform before deciding that BLACK is GROUND? Some wire left?....there should not be! One should ALWAYS try ones best to identify all conductors at an electrical point...and if unused, make sure they are dead, preferably pull them out if possible, and if they are live and no other choice at all tape them up with RED tape preferably with a insulating teminal secured over the top. At risk of appearing pedantic I will maintain my position that you need some proper training before touching any more electrical installations. I prefer to be pedantic and hope my point is taken, than for you to go kill yourself or others. Daniel
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Please ignore my previous reply. You MUST be a troll.
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On Mar 23, 6:13pm, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

No troll here. My follow up post was indeed intended as directed sarcasm. I came up with as preposterous a story as I could so it could be only interpreted as a statement from me to a select few: you wish to engage in unwarranted extrapolation, then I shall provide you with what *should* have warranted your reply.
Nope: nothing subtle at all in my fictional follow up. Had it BEEN subtle it would have wasted time with responses. Ironcially, it wasn't meant as a time-waster either: more of something to respond to with "OMG, ok, ok, I get your point, your initial post wasn't that bad." I'm more than surprised that it was responded to with sincerety at all----the sarcastic intent being as blatant as it was.
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Suddenly Proteus and Archemides Lever and some others seem quite acceptable compared to this guy. jeez....try to earnestly help a guy from killing himself and get sarcastic comments in return. Anyone involved with electrical installations who does not know what a tong ammeter (clamp-on) is should not be dealing with electrical installations. And as far as bringing Usenet into disrepute...you do not need any help from me...you're doing just fine.
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On Mar 23, 10:38pm, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

The WAY to earnestly help someone is not to adopt an admonishing tone without warrant. You launched off with a lecture based upon two falsehoods: 1. that I implied that I had not consulted proper manuals before doing anything (you had not yet heard a bit of what I had yet done) and 2. that not knowing the precise term "clamp-on" somehow invalidates someone from installing something.
Your response didn't say "If this is something you haven't done before, then you may like this site <link>". It used words to the effect of "Someone who knows what you do is asking for trouble". When you do not even know what I knew.
Your response had NOTHING to do with keeping someone else alive. It had EVERYTHING to do with posturing, and posturing alone. Hence the tone you chose.
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OK then. You win. Please continue working on electrical installations. The sooner you get electrocuted, the sooner you'll be off this group. Just how many people do you really want to brass off? So far you're doing really well. Calling people AH's is the icing on the cake. usually when people join a group (usenet or otherwise) they tend to be a bit circumspect out of respect for the group. No such reservations with you. No Siree!!! straight in and cuss people out..people who, like it or not, are more knowledgable than you and really would like to save ur sorry arse. Well that's about it from me...you got ur answer...any 1st year apprentice would have told you what a tong ammeter was...but you displayed your ignorance and then started with the insults when people were trying to help you. Most of us do not play games like you obviously do. We are mostly professionals or time served tradesmen or engineering academics and for the most part we act professionally. Electricity CAN KILL!!! it's not a game for posturing!...GET IT!!!??? If you do not know the rules...then don't play!
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On Mar 24, 4:11am, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I have said nothing that shows carelessness on any kind. I *do* the research. I *do* pay attention to the wiring diagrams. I don't do a THING electrical without shutting down the area and testing everything in sight. There is nothing that I have done that is the slightest suspect (other than the spoof I wrote to prove a point---FICTION to supply you with the example of what *would* justify your initial suspicions).
You seem to think that it is ok to lecture people as if they're idiots; that it's ok to pontificate and further admonish as if the person was doing something without forethought. All I did was ask something innocuous and assumptions about my fitness for doing *any* projects started flying. Because I didn't know of the term "clamp- on". That's how this started.
And I won't put up with your attitude. Not in usenet. Not IRL.

Pay more than convenient attention to the causality. That was in direct response to "too stupid to live". Ad hominem for ad hominem. That's not something I will put up with either.
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I think he's done spectacularly well! There should a prize for this. A Golden PLONK award perhaps?
Dave.
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"Thomas G. Marshall" wrote:

Too stupid to live.
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wrote:

Resorting to ad hominem? Ok asshole, it's what you seem to understand.
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"Thomas G. Marshall" wrote:

Yawn. You won't live long with your stupid attitude about safety.
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10 years to go before official retirement age. I reckon I'm doing ok so far. Thanks for your concern.
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Apparently it was missed that this was pure fiction.
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In article

Because of the long thread. I forget who claimed not to be in over his head. Obviously, someone was in over their capability.
Bill
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Private Profit; Public Poop! Avoid collateral windfall!

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And THAT statement solidifies your capability to jump to conclusions. Running to posturing first and asking questions later.....Again.
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These guys are continuing to address your usenet offenses in terms of electrical safety, but it has nothing to do with safety now -- it's really your impolitic approach. It's not the first time a guy has gone to the barricades over his ego and hurled bombs and brickbats at all and sundry. Doesn't make you a bad man. Believe it or not, when this has blown over you can still come back to this group and enter into communications, initiating or participating in threads that have rational contributions from various group members. Don't let the slashing drive you away. You gave as good as you got, so let it go for now.
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