1. New to Christmas lighting? Get started with the AusChristmasLighting 101 Manual:
    auschristmaslighting.com/wiki/AusChristmasLighting-101

Pigtail Resistance

Discussion in 'Computers, Cabling & Other Miscellaneous Hardware' started by BundyRoy, May 23, 2014.

  1. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2014
    Messages:
    966
    Likes Received:
    1
    Out of curiosity I got the multimeter out and measured the resistance through my 4 pin 0.75mm2 20cm long pigtails. I was getting readings of around 0.6 ohms. Now even for 14/0.20 cable which is only small the resistance is around 0.043 ohm/m. So on a 5m run (each way) this adds up to a resistance of 10 x 0.043 = 0.43 ohms.

    So if my multimeter is even close to right the resistance through a pigtail at each end is 1.2 ohms. I would be better off ignoring the wire resistance and using the pigtail resistance rather than calculating the wire resistance and ignoring the pigtails like I have been so far. The pigtails seem to provide more resistance than the wire.

    Is my multimeter way off, am I doing something wrong or is there a lot of resistance in the pigtails. This sort of resistance could lead to significant voltage drop if the strip is using 1.8A per 3m length.

    Thanks
     
  2. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,487
    Likes Received:
    19
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    What type of multimeter are you using, most people in this hobby will just use a cheap one and these are not very accurate when taking very low resistance readings
     
  3. OP
    OP
    BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2014
    Messages:
    966
    Likes Received:
    1
    Sorry did mean to mention that. Part of my query was meant to be the accuracy of my multimeter. I used one from work but I don't think it is a very expensive one. I don't know the details though. It did seem a bit odd the resistance of such a short length of wire being higher but I thought I had better check. I don't have enough experience to trust my gut feelings on expected values.

    Has anyone ever measured the resistance through a pigtail or have an expected range.
     
  4. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,487
    Likes Received:
    19
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    This added resistance may be coming from the cheap cables that are supplied with the multimeter, one way to test this is to short the test wires on the multimeter and see what reading you get.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2014
    Messages:
    966
    Likes Received:
    1
    Like zeroing a set of crappy scales. I didn't think to do that. Will check this arvo.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2014
    Messages:
    966
    Likes Received:
    1
    Just checked the resistance in the meter by shorting out the leads. It was 0.4-0.5 ohms. So not much in the pigtails, especially considering my multimeter only reads to 0.1 ohms as well.

    Thanks Eddy.
     
  7. bjpc2716

    bjpc2716 need more lights to light up the world

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Messages:
    659
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    melbourne
    Find Me On:
    get a fluke muti meter
     
  8. OP
    OP
    BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2014
    Messages:
    966
    Likes Received:
    1
    How important is it to get a super duper multimeter. Can I get through with the basic model.
     
  9. multicast

    multicast Senior Elf Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2013
    Messages:
    715
    Likes Received:
    7

    Really not that important. They all suffer the same things to some extent. They are more of a "indicator" tool than something you make precise measurements..
     
  10. gnarmstr

    gnarmstr Full Time Elf

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2014
    Messages:
    335
    Likes Received:
    35
    Location:
    Karalee
    I have an expensive multimeter and it makes no difference.


    I just did a test using both leads and it reads 0.25 ohms.
    Using just the Red gives 0.05 and just the black 0.2


    Either get good leads or just check before measuring
     
  11. David_AVD

    David_AVD Bite my shiny metal ass!

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2010
    Messages:
    3,412
    Likes Received:
    43
    Location:
    Victoria Point (Brisbane)
    Find Me On:
    Any 2-wire resistance measurement will have an error due to the resistance of the meter leads. The error is only a real issue when you're measuring really low resistances.

    The options for measuring low resistances with no error are:
    • Take the meter lead resistance into account (subtract from reading). This will only get you so far.
    • Use a meter that can do a 4-wire measurement. This required a special meter and leads.
     
  12. multicast

    multicast Senior Elf Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2013
    Messages:
    715
    Likes Received:
    7
    Theres other ways as well.. If you have a precision current source, you can measure the voltage drop ( even cheap multimeters can do this reasonably well ),.. knowing the voltage and current, you can calculate the resistance.


    Saw a couple of LCR meters at the SEG, but was a bit dubious.. I'm tempted next time to take a couple of 'sample' parts with me, that i've already measured, and see how they stack up..
     
  13. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2010
    Messages:
    6,487
    Likes Received:
    19
    Location:
    Albion Park NSW
    Find Me On:
    The meter i use at work makes you short the leads first so then it measures the resistance of the leads first before doing any testing, but this is a multi thousand dollar meter made for motor circuit analysis
     
  14. AussieDoug

    AussieDoug Full Time Elf

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2012
    Messages:
    375
    Likes Received:
    0
    I had some great pigtail resistance last night. I wasn't getting any power through it at all, after 30 minutes of searching & changing pixels out I eventually found the problem. The 2 pins in the plug were recessed back so far they wouldn't connect with the female plug.
    The fun & games of fault finding.
     
  15. OP
    OP
    BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2014
    Messages:
    966
    Likes Received:
    1
    I noticed on some of mine the female part was a reasonable distance in and was wondering if there was ever problems with non connections.
     

Share This Page