First problem is that you ignored advice and bought an autoranging meter.
TURN OFF THE AUTORANGING.
Dig around in the manual and look for range hold or range lock or
something similar. Set it to the 20V range (maybe 40V depending on the
meter) and leave it there while measuring voltage. You'll have to lock
it again if you change modes.
You've given few details, but some assumptions can be made.
There are always exceptions, but usually...
Where does the power come from?
If it's a battery, it's DC.
If it's a transformer, it's AC.
How are they connected?
If you can get one light to work in a socket, it's parallel.
2.5 vac 0.3a #14 flashlight bulbs x 12 = 3.6 amps.
11 ohms cold seems about 5x too high for that bulb. You sure you've
got #14 bulbs?
Short the meter leads and measure resistance of the leads. It's never
zero and sometimes a lot more if the probes are defective or just cheap
or connections are corroded. Subtract that number from your bulb
#14 MINIATURE BULB E10 BASE - 2.47 Volt 0.30 Amp Miniature Screw (E10)
Base 0.50 MSCP, C-2R Filament Design, 15 Average Rated Hours, 0.94"
Maximum Overall Length #14 Miniature Bulb
NOTE that it's rated for 15 hours average life. Might wanna change
to a different bulb. Then you'll need a different transformer, but
12V bulbs on a 12V surplus laptop power supply works well. Cheap
non-regulated wall warts have small transformers and have serious
regulation problems as noted below.
If it's a battery, it won't last long. If it's AC, the transformer
should be as big as your fist. If it's much smaller, it's gonna have
a lot of secondary impedance. What that means is that it's sized
for max load. Designed properly, the lamps will work fine. Problem
is that one burns out reducing the load and the voltage goes up increasing
the stress on the others. Like dominoes, they start failing at
an increasing rate. That's why you've got one left that works.
There's another more subtle problem. About 70 years ago, the line
voltage increased from 110 to 120V. The life of a bulb goes down
MUCH faster than the voltage goes up. That can be a problem
for a bulb with a design life (at proper voltage) of 15 hours.
Your problem is likely bad connections in the circuit.
This can be corroded connections at the socket or corrosion
inside the socket where the lamp contacts it or corrosion on the
bulb itself. Sometimes, people just twist wires together to
make connections. After 70 years, corrosion causes the connection
to fail. You might measure unloaded voltage at the end of the lamp
string, but a bulb won't light in that socket.
You should have two wires leaving whatever powers it running together
in parallel throughout the house with each bulb tapped into the pair.
If you can tell where the wire runs, you should be able to tell, from
which sockets work and which don't, where the break is.
You can measure the resistance of the wiring, but it's
sensitive to contact corrosion at the probe point and it's easy to infer
a break where none exists.
Remember to short the probes in ohms mode and lock the range
so you won't see all the autoranging artifacts.
If you put the lamp in the far end of the wire, you can
measure the voltage at each socket. But if access is limited
you risk shorting the connection and smoking something.
From the symptoms, I'd guess that you have corroded connections AND the
wrong bulb type.
What's the voltage at the supply end of the circuit with the one-good
Are we having fun yet?
I don't recall anyone saying not to buy an autoranging meter. One or two
said not to buy any meter at all, but it seemed like they were just
jerking me around.
If the autoranging can be turned off, then why is it such a big deal not
to buy an autoranging meter?
I don't see any way to turn it off. It does have a battery test mode
with settings for 1.5, 6, 9, and 12 volts. Can I use that?
This is the meter:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
In another thread, I explained that there is a 110 AC cord going into
the base of the doll house. There's a sealed compartment underneath that
I assume houses a transformer of some kind.
Yes. I didn't know that when I posted before.
I have no idea what bulbs I have. The marking are illegible. I have a
bunch of #14s on order. I'll see what they do.
With the meter set to ohms, the readong says "0.L" and the units says "M
ohms". If I short the leads, the display jumps around a bit and then
settles down at between 0.0 and 0.6 ohms. It's closer to zero if I short
at the tips and slightly higher if I short nearer the base.
The meter is brand new, so corrosion should not be a problem.
15 hours? What possible use would there be for such a bulb?
I can't get at the actual transformer without taking the doll house
apart, which I don't want to do right now. However, the housing where I
think the transformer is placed is about 6" x 6" x 1".
Are you confusing load and voltage?
It's been almost 40 years since college physics, but my recollection is
that the voltage drop across each branch of a parallel circuit is the
same. So, from E=IR, the load (amperage) is the inverse of the
If they fail at an increasing rate, the odds of having just one left
working would be small, no? Once all of the others are done, the last
one would go very quickly.
I can't get to most of that to check. The bulbs look clean.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
There is nothing wrong with an auto ranging meter for general testing. It
is often the perferred type of meter. I use them almost every day.
Everything from low voltage stuff to 480 volt 3 phase. I have used meters
every where from the least expensive kind to $ 300 and up meters, even test
equipment costing $ 5000 or more. For general around the house testing what
you have is fine.
I would not use the battery ranges for anything but the batteries. It
should slightly load down the batteries so you get a beter check of them.
For the bulbs, all you need to know is if the resistance is very low ( say
less than 100 ohms) or very high (really an open). You seem to have some
new bulbs on the way. YOu may want to check them before putting them in.
Not likely, but there could be some bad ones in the package. I was trouble
shooting some equipment at work and thought I had it repaired. Still blew a
new fuse. To make the long story short, a new box had half the fuses bad as
I started checking them before I installed them. This is not the only time
this as hapened. I had repaired the equipment the first time, but the new ,
bad, fuses caused me to spend a lot of wasted time.
Bulbs, batteries and fuses all get tested before installation. Especially
batteries. Must have been 10 times that I've been fooled by "dead in the
package" batteries. I discovered two bad bulbs tonight, allegedly new in
the package, when testing for resistance.
Fool me once, shame on you, fool me 10 times, I'm getting out my meter!
On Thu, 22 Dec 2011 08:28:38 -0500, "Stormin Mormon"
With your annoying top posting, and your triply annoying >- in the
ilne above, people replying to you by just clicking reply delete
everything needed to know what "your idea" is. If you're not willing
to stop top-posting, get rid of the >- line.
The rest of my reply is where it should be.
What one could do is remove the bulb, break the glass gently with
pliers, and use the wires with alligator clips to connect to each
filament end support. The radio shack alligator clips are mostly
covered in vinyle and a piece of tape around one of them will help to
prevent shorting. Then put the bulb back in.
If that doesn't work solder a wire to each end support, bend the wires
away from each other , or put some tape or better yet glue of the
right sort in between them. and then put the bubl back in. .
Agreed. The best thing to do would be to take a short piece of dowel rod,
use a brass screw at the center of one end attached to insulated wire to act
as the bulb center contact, wrap some bare wire around the outside of the
dowel to server as the socket wall contact and hook those leads to the
meter's probes with alligator clips. That would take about 10 minutes in
the shop and has a big advantage over any screw-in method of not having the
wires twist as you screw it in. The dowel tested should be "push and read."
Memory lapse! It's called "Minature" - searching on Dollhouse got me all
sorts of Russian girlie sites.
<<Charley Parkes thinks he sees a figure in a museum dollhouse that comes
alive. Charley returns to the museum
numerous times and gazes into the dollhouse . . . sees the doll in the house
Charley falls in love with the figure, a woman, but is institutionalized
because of his belief that the figure of the woman (as well as a housekeeper
and a man) is alive. He eventually is "rehabilitated" and is returned to the
care of his mother.>>
You'll have to go to the link to read how it ends. You're close.
On Thu, 22 Dec 2011 12:38:35 -0500, "Robert Green"
I'm pretty sure I saw it. All the episodes of that show were good.
Apparently Rod Serling practically worked himself to death to write
and (produce and direct?) so many episodes so quickly.
I thought there was something wrong with me that I didn't ike "The
Outer Limits", which I somehow thought was the sequel to the Twilight
Zone. But now they show Limits on tv every night, and it's not at
all like the Twilight Zone and I see why I didnt' like it.
There's a great program, I think on the Biography channel, about all the
problems that management-heavy CBS caused for Serling. He felt they would
frequently butcher his creative vision with idiotic requests to change
everything they could think of, mostly just to prove that they could.
Television suffers from the same problem as the automaking industry. Too
many generals and not enough soldiers.
The Outer Limits (the original version) was often handicapped by the
ponderous moral lessons they tried to teach. They also had some of the
cheesiest special effects this side of the movie "Sharktopus" or "Plan Nine
. . ."
There are a small number of TOL's that have turned out to classics and
showcased actors like Sally Kellerman and Martin Landau who ended up having
impressive film careers. Landau's potrayal of morphine-addicted horror film
star Bela Lugosi in "Ed Wood" is nothing short of brilliant.
You've got to be a real night owl, Micky, to catch the "Outer Limits" on
TV - around here it's only on at 5AM along with Broderick Crawford's
"Highway Patrol" and "Sea Hunt." If you ever watch "Highway Patrol" look
for how often Crawford appears leaning against something when standing up.
It's reputed he was fall-down drunk for most of the filming. (-:
On Sat, 24 Dec 2011 22:48:46 -0500, "Robert Green"
I go through periods when I am a night owl, but when that stopped I
just recorded those two and Patty Duike. Patty Duke's show is really
great in a lot of ways. It's the most "sophisticated' sitcom I ever
saw, in that they talk about all kinds of topics international travel,
how to form corporations, how to get suppliers, vendors, advertising,
about politics (One episode where her father's boss runs for office,
he makes the same speeches politicians make today, word for word).
They use words even I barely know or don't know. They had an episode
where Patty wants a fancy French dinner for her friends, and her
mother gives her some choices. Patty can pronounce the French well,
but she doesn't know what they mean. One was chicken broth, which she
said sounded a lot better in French.
I taped all three but didnt' have time to play back everything I tape
(record) so when I went away for a week, I cut out Sea Hunt and Patty
Duike, all the episodes I had seen already, and kept Highway Patrol.
So far, even when it starts boringly and I know I've seen it, it still
gets very interesting within 10 minutes. A big advantage of
half-hour shows is they are all plot, no sitting around thinking about
what to do next.
I read that once, (here? from you?) and wikip says something
similar, but I don't see it. His body language seems reasonable,
especially for a man his weight, and he doiesn't run fast, but he does
climb hills and move around a lot when the plot calls for it. The
last couple days he's had a dark mark on his lower lip, towards the
side. But the show stopped filming in 1959 and he didn't die until
1986, so maybe it was only a cold sore scab or something.
A lot of interesting things about the show. They rarely rush, and
not because he's too fat, because often they haven't left the station
yet. And they almost never use the radio when the police car is
moving. Instead, even though it's usually an emergency, they call in
before they get into the car. Even when they see a guy turn around at
a road block and in 30 seconds he can be out of sight or turn down a
side road, the cop stands there and calls in.
Or someone's shot, and his wife doesn't ask the operator for an
ambulance, she asks for the highway patrol. I was alive then and at
least in Pennsylvainia, one asked the operator for the police, an
ambulance, or the fire department. A lot quicker.
OTOH, it was what people would, sillily, call modern, in a lot of
ways. Sometimes the women criminals were the dominated female who
did whatever their boyfriend or husband told them, but other times
they were the more crimiinal one, who dragged the guy into crime, and
even the brains. More than half of the criminals wore suits and
ties,. They had people who were extorted into crimes. They had an
episode with a mute girl, who had been kidnapped and released, where
they showed how smart she was when matthews asked the right questions,
and she wrote down enough info to catch the bad guys.
Of course no one on the show was black. Not in Sea Hunt either iirc.
A great movie he stars in was Born Yesterday, with Judy Holliday.
She's great too.
Patty Duike had token blacks, someone dancing at the school dance or
sitting in a class or at the malt shop, but I dont' think they spoke
more than three words total.
BTW, the aparatment building they used to show was actually in
Brooklyn Heights, right at the south end of the Brooklyn Promenade, a
broad sidewwalk facing the river above the Brookly Queens Xway which
was built into the side of the hill, northbound lanes on the bottom I
think, southbound above them, Promenade on top. They have an episode
or two where they walk on the Promenade and look at Manhattan. It's
an apartment building, even though they acted like they lived in a
house. My friend lived a couple doors away, 20 years later. In
later episodes, they lived in a big house with a big yard. No one in
Brooklyn Heights has even a small yard in front. Nor does Brooklyn
Heights High School exist. There is no neighborhood school in
Brooklyn Heights, even elementarry I think, and for high school they'd
have to walk a couple miles to Brooklyn Tech, one of the 4** NYC HS's
that require passing a test to get in, but maybe not such a high score
if it's the only high school near your home.
**Brrooklyn Tech, Bronx High School of Science, Stuyvesant High School
(in Manhattan) and the High School of Performing Arts, portrayed in
the move and tv show Fame. That one requires an audition, not an
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