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Vacuum tubes

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by [email protected], Oct 11, 2007.

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  1. Guest

    how do you test vacuum tubes to see if they are any good?
  2. mark

    mark Guest

    A mutual conductance tube tester works pretty well.
  3. Arfa Daily

    Arfa Daily Guest

    Realistically, with a tube characteristic tester ...

    Otherwise, you might be able to test a few types for basic functionality by
    subbing them into a known working piece of kit that used the same types, but
    you probably wouldn't go down a storm when you popped a tube with an
    internal short into great uncle Jimmy's pride and joy vintage radio ... :-\

  4. Smitty Two

    Smitty Two Guest

    I have an inkling of what this means from the context, but would you
    mind putting it in American for me?
  5. Arfa Daily

    Arfa Daily Guest

    Hi Smitty

    I guess it probably comes from the theatre, although I'm not too sure about
    that. Perhaps someone else may have heard it in that context? Over here if
    an act is really well received - say a comedian or a singer or band perhaps,
    it's often said that they "went down a storm" with the audience, which I'm
    guessing probably referred originally to the 'storm' of noise created by the
    applause and general appreciation, so perhaps that gives you a better idea.
    Looking at the phrase again, "a storm" is used descriptively in this case,
    rather than as a noun, which is perhaps why its meaning comes across oddly
    your side of the pond.

    So translated, it means "would not be accepted with much appreciation"

  6. Arfa Daily

    Arfa Daily Guest

    Hey Smitty, I just took a look on the 'net to see if I could find anything
    that confirmed or otherwise what I said in the post above, and
    interestingly, there are several people asking what you did. Just as a
    matter of interest, we also say "go down a bundle" here to mean the same
    thing. That may come from the phrase "a bundle of laughs" but again, I'm not
    sure. It would seem reasonable though, as if something was 'bad' or not well
    received, then there would be no cause for laughter or other good cheer. "Go
    down a storm" does get used for both positive and negative meanings, but the
    same phrase using "bundle" tends only to be used in a negative context.

  7. D-unit

    D-unit Guest

    In the good old days....

    You could go down to your local Eckerd drugs and use their TUBE TESTER.
    It was a rather large console filled with knobs switches and buttons. You
    used a paper scroll to find your tube number i.e. 6V6. Then, you
    read the settings for the tube and set the machine accordingly.
    In the bottom of the console, were drawers containing new tubes.
    Hopefully, if yours was bad, they had a new replacement.

    I wonder where they all went?

    I have since aquired an old health kit suitcase model but I don't think it works.
    I havn't really needed it.

  8. Charles

    Charles Guest

    Take them to a troll testing center.
  9. Smitty Two

    Smitty Two Guest

    Got it. Thanks for your efforts. I infer that your WWW research
    unearthed several questions but no authoritative answers. I'd say your
    speculation on the etymology of the storm is quite plausible. Not so
    sure about bundle, but who am I to say?

    Is going down a storm being used positively a more recent innovation,
    like the American slang "that's bad" to mean very, very good?

    There are books written detailing derivations of colloquialisms, but
    even they often disagree, and I suppose we've simply lost the history on
    many of them.

    The most fascinating language-related thing I've ever seen was an
    interview on "BookTV" (an obscure TV network) with someone talking about
    the history of the Oxford English dictionary. Seems that was the first
    serious effort anywhere in the world to put together a real
    comprehensive lexicon of a language as it was actually being used. The
    story is as intriguing and suspenseful as any great tale of adventure.
  10. Arfa Daily

    Arfa Daily Guest

    I think that "going down a storm" has been used equally in both connotations
    for as long as I can remember, over here at least ...

  11. Back in those days I had a tube tester I bought from....I can't
    remember, either Heathkit or Allied radio or Lafayette electronics. It
    has several style socket types from 7 and 9 pin miniature, 12 pin, 8 pin
    octal, 11 pin and others. It had switches and knobs to set the filament
    voltage and stuff. A row of some 30 other switches that had to be set.
    you used a chart, looked up the tube number, plugged it in the right
    socket, set the switches and read the output on a meter. I wonder what
    happened to that?

    When you test a tube you test several things, filament, cathode, grid or
    grids and the anode. It's not simple.
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