DIY needle probes for multimeter


Sometimes the small SMD elements in reel / tape form may get mixed up and loose their markings. Eg. I got an assortment from a seller, that he forgot to mark the values on. To test the values you need to remove a element from each tape and test it or you can easily make a fine needle probe for your LRC meter (or multimeter) to measure the elements without removing them from the tape.

For this you will need two pins used for sowing and a pair of multimeter leads (they may also be damaged ones without the probes). You should slowly force the pins through the center of the probe cable (spining them helps them to penetrate more easily and not to bend). What we want is the pins to be in contact with center conductor of the cable. When you finished inserting pins through the cable you can test your newly made probes by switching to continuity tester and testing if they have a good contact when you touch the two pins together. If all is ok you can now test the elements in tape by simply pierceing paper or foil on tape to get contact with the element. Also note that you should not touch the leads or the metal parts of pins while measuring with your hands as this may disturb the measurement(pins with plastic ball “handles” come in handy).

Multimeter cables with pierced isolation (after removing pins) should never be used to measure potentially lethal voltages. The probes I used are on a LRC meter without voltage measurement so there is no problem.

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