Real and Fake Relays

       I have bought some relays and sockets to use for various automation projects and I had a couple relays and sockets melt.

       Further analysis led to me thinking the new cheap ones are poor quality (surprise!)

       So I took them apart and compared them to known genuine parts from old, junked torn down industrial equipment.

The two melted relays and sockets.

Here is the comparison. Left is the cheap immitation. Right is an old genuine one.

Although not a fair comparison, it was what I had on hand. The cheap one is supposed to be a 10A socket and the genuine one is a 5A (7A max) rated socket.

Left: cheap socket, Right: genuine socket.

They look similar but further looking at the contacts, you can see the difference.

The similarities end here. The cheap ones use really thin sheetmetal for the connections and contact wipes and a nut for the screw.

The genuine ones on the right use thick brass plate and the contact wipers are copper. The brass plate is threaded.

The wipers are clearly different. The cheap ones use plated steel which has poor conductivity. The genuine ones use thicker plated copper. The insertion force is also greater with the genuine socket.

Now here is another one I had. Seems legit.

Socket is not marked but feels cheap.

Yeah, it's cheap. These are supposed to be 10A rated and the wires are only #24 wire but appear to be silicone insulated.

Soldering was done using corrosive flux and was not cleaned so the contact springs are rusting.

Wire insulation is also beginning to stain.

"Omron" brand or so it says. Part number LY4NJ

A closer look at the relays show it must be an immitation.

The two outer sets of contacts show a scary lack of clearance to the armature and is almost touching!

The other side is no different.

Here is a genuine Omron brand probably from the 80's Model LY4.

The genuine one has a bit more clearance with all poles bent away from the armature.

It can clearly be seen all the way to the other end.

Immitation on left, genuine on right.

I already bent the solder points on the immitation one to give proper clearance from the armature.

Contact points are also a little larger on the genuine one.

Back of armature.

Bottom pins.

       It is quite hard to find genuine ones new over here unless I order from reputable sites online so I guess the best option is to find ex-equipment parts. There are less choices depending on what has been torn down but are much safer and higher quality.

Page created and copyright R.Quan ©26 Aug 2015.