Thanks for the advice everyone!
So it turns out the cheap $5 "voltmeter" I bought from Harbor Freight is actually a multimeter. I was able to find a manual online and now understand how to use the horseshoe settings.
I completely agree about the crappy hinge switches on the NV series. My mothers went out on hers a month ago. The switch I replaced last week as on a Gateway as well, though it was on the top panel at least.
I always assumed that the laptops that you need to take apart to get at the hard drive were designed that way to make it difficult to steal someones data. Alot of Vaio's are designed like that.