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View Full Version : sorry for the basic wiring question...


PaperCutter
08-28-2008, 09:51 PM
At the risk of taking a flogging... I'm reading everything I can on lighting, and these hub systems seem to be the most sensible way of doing large projects. But every place I've ever worked has refused to do it that way, and has mostly daisy-chained fixtures or done the T. Am I missing something? Do you guys tend to use the hubs, or no?

Some quick background- I'm a landscape designer and I'm just now getting back out and doing installs. I've been stuck in the office for a few years now, so I just bought a bunch of fixtures to relearn everything I've forgotten- the last fixture I personally installed was in '98. Obviously, a lot has changed since then, and a manufacturer's class here and there hasn't kept me up to speed. Don't beat me up too bad on the occasional stupid question, but then again, those kinds of beatings are what made me a decent designer.

Chris J
08-28-2008, 10:30 PM
There are a lot of guys here that use the hub method. I use all methods for each individual application, but I would say that I do T's more than anything. Get away from the daisy chain and stick to either hub or Ts. Actually, a T is nothing more than a hub with only two legs, but as long as you group your fixtures together there is no problem. I don't usually let the last fixture get more than about 25' from the T, and my voltage to my fixtures are always within a few 10ths of one another. I'll even daisy chain when the conditions are right. For instance two or three fixtures all within 10' of each other, the daisy chain is more than appropriate.

NightLightingFX
08-28-2008, 11:13 PM
I pretty much do the hub all the time. Sometimes I do the T. Chris has a point sometimes a little daisy chain may be alright. I should probably more open to an occasional small daisy chain in unique situations.
~Ned

Chris J
08-28-2008, 11:19 PM
I'd like to also point out that you need to be very careful if you do these short daisy chains. The fixtures need to be really close for me to do this, especially if the fixtures are going to be aimed at light colored walls or columns. You would see the difference in light levels if there were more than .5 volt difference.

S&MLL
08-28-2008, 11:22 PM
.5 is a hell of a difference. At that point why not hub it? What's a couple extra feet of 16 for equal voltage?

PaperCutter
08-28-2008, 11:27 PM
So basically, I'm assuming that the main advantage to a daisy chain is labor & wire savings? I just know that it seemed like every time I met a client at night to check in with them, I'd end up spotting a noticeably dimmer light at the end of the run. Seems to me, the production guys blew the labor savings by having to go back...

Chris J
08-28-2008, 11:33 PM
.5 is a hell of a difference. At that point why not hub it? What's a couple extra feet of 16 for equal voltage?

That's what I said. Don't do it if your going to have fixtures spaced too far apart.

Papercutter, it's probably best if you don't even worry about the daisy chain. Again, I will only do it if the fixtures are extremly close together. The hub is a sure fire method to get equal voltage to all lamps. When you get some time, experiment with the different methods.

S&MLL
08-28-2008, 11:38 PM
Very good advice. On a side not to everyone I used coppermoon for the first time today. Beautiful fixtures and awesome service.

S&MLL
08-28-2008, 11:40 PM
So basically, I'm assuming that the main advantage to a daisy chain is labor & wire savings? I just know that it seemed like every time I met a client at night to check in with them, I'd end up spotting a noticeably dimmer light at the end of the run. Seems to me, the production guys blew the labor savings by having to go back...


Not sure how much it saves. You still have to dig the trench weathers its for a 16 or 10 gauge cable. Also the mid size king wire nuts are not cheep. So i'm not sure how much chaining the fixtures saves cost wise. Usually installed with that method by un trained landscape crews.