Gazette Archive 2/18/00
The Wall Wizard is a multipurpose tool. It is a stud sensor, metal detector and AC current sensor.
The way the stud sensor works is by using it's metal detector sensor to find the screws used in holding wallboard to wooden studs. This is where I found the tool a little difficult to use. If you have metal studs, then this tool would win a stud finding contest hands down. However, in my house, I had some difficulty in finding wooden studs. You set the sensitivity with a dial in the handle and then working in a circular motion you find a screw head holding the wallboard on. Once you find a screw head it, is then fairly easy to find the two sides of the stud. Moving back and forth over the screw head, you can hear the detector start to make a noise. This is one side of the stud. As you keep moving the tone will sound when you are over the screw head and then back to the starting sound at the other side of the stud. As I said, in my house I had some difficulty in finding the screw heads. This could be due to my builder not using enough screws to hold the wallboard on.
Using the unit as a metal detector is pretty much the same as using it to find studs. Set the sensitivity and pass the unit over the wood to find metal. I did not do extensive tests to see how deep a piece of metal in wood would be detected but for finding metal just under the surface, or pieces covered by dirt, this unit will do.
The Wall Wizard also detects AC current. The tip of the unit has rubber on it and you place this tip inside the slots of an outlet. The tone pulses when AC current is detected. You can then go and turn the circuit off and verify that there is no current present. According to the documentation you can also use this feature to find broken and exposed wires. You would run the tip along the wire and at the point of the break in the insulation the tone comes on.
With the unit detecting AC current, the one thing that would be neat is if they added the ability to place something in your AC socket and then go down to the circuit breaker panel and use the unit to find out which breaker is the one you want.
All in all, this is a useful tool to have although in my case I would use a different stud sensor for my house. Its other uses, however, will allow it to find a place in my toolbox.
Editor's Note: You can get more info from their website.