Archive for August 20th, 2018

eBay High Voltage Alligator Clip Test Leads

The Description sounds enticing, in the usual eBay manner:

100% Brand new and high quality.
Product Shape: Same as the picture show
1. Product Name: High Voltage Alligator Clip Test Leads
2. Cable Type: Double-Ended Wire
3. Conductor Material& Size: 1mm²Copper Wires
4. Housing Material: Silicone
5. Max. Current: 15A
6. Withstanding Voltage: 2KV
7. Operating Temperature: -20℃~120℃
8. Making Way: Injection Molding
9. Interface Type: AC/DC
10. Color: Black, Yellow, Red, Green, Blue

Suit For:
1. Injection molding to complete, good looking, moisture proof, durable and tough!
2. Electrical test leads suitable for use with multimeters, power supplies and other electronic equipment

They’re three bucks each, which should buy you some copper and decent construction.

The insulation over the clips is certainly chunky enough, even if one might quibble about the standoff distance required for a 2 kV rating:

eBay HV Alligator Clips - overview

eBay HV Alligator Clips – overview

The wires have good silicone insulation and consist of fine copper strands, but I definitely won’t trust them to handle 2 kV:

eBay HV Alligator Clips - wiring

eBay HV Alligator Clips – wiring

No solder, of course, just  copper conductors bent back around the insulation and crimped into the alligator clip. Definitely not a gas-tight metal-to-metal joint, but good enough for simple needs.

Update: A better look at the crimp on a different clip:

eBay HV Alligator Clips - crimp

eBay HV Alligator Clips – crimp

IMO, the clip’s low-strength metal can’t possibly make and hold a gas-tight joint, no matter how hard you squeeze.

There’s enough contact area for low resistance, on the order of a few tens of milliohms. We’ll see how long this lasts …