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Old 5th March 2013, 07:10 PM   #1
6sigma is offline 6sigma  United States
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Question why NOT ESD tools?

For screwdrivers, tweezers and pliers/cutters, why would one NOT buy ESD safe tools for audio electronics? Even for the slightly higher prices, this would seem to be a no-brainer. I'm outfitting a new electronics bench and plan to invest in high-quality, "lifetime" tools, so your comments will be really useful. Thanks.
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Old 5th March 2013, 09:33 PM   #2
DF96 is offline DF96  England
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Please excuse my ignorance. What is an ESD safe tool? Most tools are made of metal, and can be grounded by the user. Provided the user is safely grounded, what does an ESD safe tool add?
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Old 5th March 2013, 10:24 PM   #3
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Be careful using conductive ESD safe 'twiddle-sticks' in tube equipment with high voltages. That's one instance where you want non-conductive tools.
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Old 5th March 2013, 10:30 PM   #4
6sigma is offline 6sigma  United States
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Thanks for these 2 comments. I thought I was losing my mind with some of the discussions other places. All I've ever known is straps, mats and wise precautions.
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Old 5th March 2013, 11:11 PM   #5
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Hi There;

Do you plan on working with CMOS or VLSI a lot; then yes. Mostly bipolars and tubes; no; it would be a waste of money.

MOSFETS; maybe but there are easier ways and most are zener protected. I've built a few MOSFET based amps and serviced others. Other than a mat and wrist strap (and sometimes not even that) I have never blown a device from static. ESD is usually a latent failure. After 10-15 years of service all MOSFETs that I have handled are fine. Again; I do use a mat and wrist strap most of the time.

Good luck.

Matt
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Old 5th March 2013, 11:25 PM   #6
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If your working in a balloon factory with them inflated or with some nice polyester shag carpet be careful. otherwise just take normal precautions against static discharge. The same would go for filling a gas can in the back of a pickup truck with a plastic bed liner, probably not a very wise thing to do.
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