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Can "tester leads" (see link) be used as a groundi

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Can "tester leads" (see link) be used as a groundi

Postby Feu on Tue Jul 25, 2006 11:22 am

Can the following be used as (substituted for) a 'grounding cable' between a PC and a similar component (i.e. one end connected to the metal of a PC case and the other end to the other gadget's chassis)?

I couldn't find an actual 'grounding cable'...


[L=Insulated Test / Jumper Leads (with alligator clips) at Radio Shack]http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?cp=&productId=2062661&tab=summary[/L]

Someone said any copper wire will work. They also said that most wires have some sort of grounding (capability) built-in.

I want to make sure that these will work, since one of the two devices I need to ground (by connecting the two to a single grounding wire) has a "floating ground"; this makes it susceptible to getting fried.

Thanks!
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Postby hoxlund on Tue Jul 25, 2006 4:19 pm

in the decade plus of working/repairing/upgrading 100s of computers i have never used a grounding strap and also have never shorted out or broken a part because of it
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Tue Jul 25, 2006 5:27 pm

hoxlund wrote:in the decade plus of working/repairing/upgrading 100s of computers i have never used a grounding strap and also have never shorted out or broken a part because of it


I've never used one either, and also never killed anything as a result. But my Grade 7 teacher *DID* kill a chip once because of an electrical discharge when he wasn't grounded. (and yes, he was actually a pretty decent techie).
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Postby Alektron on Wed Jul 26, 2006 1:45 am

In the US, the computer chassis case will only be grounded for sure if the 3-prong plug is plugged in to a 3-hole outlet, and the pc power supply switch on the back is "On". The chassis may or may not be grounded if the switch is on "Off". Then, you can take a wire and connect it to the chassis. If it's reasonably long-term, you could take out a chassis screw that makes direct metal contact, and wrap the end of the copper wire around that, or crimp a U-shaped connector to the wire end, and tighten that with a screw to the chassis. Take the other end of the wire and make a good contact to the thing you want to protect. If it's a battery powered thing, the gauge of the wire isn't important, but if it's a wall powered device, get a wire rated for that (Radio Shack, Home Depot, etc).

If you have a simple multimeter, check for connectivity between the two chassises by touching the leads of the meter to each chassis.

Do not trust the alligator clip wire for anything besides a battery powered device. That thing will not handle much!
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Postby Feu on Fri Jul 28, 2006 12:22 pm

Thanks for the replies!

I have also NEVER used a grounding strap when working with a PC by itself (not that using one is a bad idea; I certainly don't want to discourage people from playing it safe).
I have replaced hardware many times, including entire motherboards etc.

Instead, I always made sure to
a) discharge any static by touching the metal of the case before touching anything else
b) not to build up static (i.e, I made sure not to move my legs or body on the carpet, if any, while working on the PC).


This thread, however, was about a special situation, involving more than just the PC and its components.
Everything worked out. :)
Thanks again!
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