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I think this is somewhat of a "trade secret".

Being a software engineer for embedded devices myself, I often find myself using oscilloscopes and multimeters. I have always wondered about my Fluke 87-V and all flukes before that.

They have these slots in the back that perfectly fit your test probes/leads, protecting their points. However: I have -never- been able to find a way to properly wrap/fold the leads around the multimeter, and still be able to use the slots nicely.

Is there some secret to this, or should I just disconnect my leads after use?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Yes, it is a secret. If a non-electrical engineer comes in the lab I hastily undo the probes and wrap them around the multimeters in dread of becoming the one who spilled the beans. \$\endgroup\$ – apalopohapa Feb 28 '13 at 8:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ Maybe you're supposed to wrap the leads like a twisted-pair cable to stop EMI induced current while the meter is off. \$\endgroup\$ – PeterJ Feb 28 '13 at 9:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ Don't they end up as a twisted pair after 5 minutes of work anyway? \$\endgroup\$ – Christoph Feb 28 '13 at 10:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ Lock them away in a safe with the good oscilloscope probes! \$\endgroup\$ – Brian Drummond Feb 28 '13 at 11:21
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    \$\begingroup\$ Where do I leave my meter leads? At home usually :( \$\endgroup\$ – MikeJ-UK Feb 28 '13 at 12:41
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As a long-suffering hobbyist happy to finally have a grown-up multimeter, I was surprised this wasn't more intuitive. I think I've worked out a decent way to wrap it:

Leads remain plugged into terminals, wires wrap around sideways. Start at the bottom and wind your way up towards the dial. For the last wrap across the face, angle back down towards the terminals. Then on the back hook the leads under the lip of the tilt stand and route them out the notch. The probes will just reach their slots with a bit of stress relief and the foot of the kickstand should keep them from unwinding.

It took me a few tries to wrap so there was enough (but not too much) slack, but after getting the hang of it I can wrap it fairly quickly without worrying too much about the precision of it.

I'm not sure if this is less or more stressful to the leads than the alternatives—but to avoid loose, tangled wires without a pouch? I'll take my chances!

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The slots are designed also to hold one of the probes so that you can hold the meter and one probe with one hand and the other probe in the other hand. This comes in handy when working on equipment in the field when you can't put the meter down.

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Vertical wrap works great! Check out my pics. Multimeter vertical wrap 1 Mutilmeter vertical wrap 2

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  • \$\begingroup\$ You spilled the beans! \$\endgroup\$ – StijnSpijker Jun 14 '17 at 11:42
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I never use the slots. I wrap the leads around the meter and leave it at that. The slots are a nice idea but you will just end up stabbing yourself worse than if the leads were loose and had some "give".

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I now wrap the leads lengthways around the meter. With the leads plugged in, I start wrapping them vertically, toward the display and down the back side. After two turns, the probes are turned upward and fit perfectly in the slots provided, with the leads having just the right tension. It may help if the leads are not twisted.

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I always put the probes in the slots, then unplugged them from the multi, and wrapped them around the multi, then plugged them back in to keep them from unrolling... Is that wrong?

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I put the probes into the slots at the back of the meter, leave the bananas plugged into the jacks, and wrap the leads around the meter and put it in the zippered case.

Using this method, I think the leads will have a longer life: wrapping the full length of the leads (by either end being not secured) means you'll wrap the leads more times (twice as many times) around the body of the meter than if you attach both ends (bananas plugged in; probes secured in back). More wrapping = shorter life.

This way it unwraps very quickly (twice as fast) than if you don't secure the probes, and I never had an issue with stabbing myself.

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