Hub and lead length

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by johnquest, Jul 9, 2007.

  1. johnquest

    johnquest LawnSite Member
    Posts: 36

    Question about the Hub method. Cast recommends one fixture per lead back to the hub at no more than 25ft of 16 gauge wire. I'm in a situation where I need 2 fuxtures at 20W each on one lead back to the hub. Should I up the gauge of the lead wire from 16 to maybe 12 or 14. The total lead length will need to be about 40 feet. I'll have two other leads with a single fixture each, which should be OK and is within Cast specs for leads and single fixtures. I have a single run from the transformer at 35 feet of 12 gauge to the hub and I'm using a Vista 300W MT transformer. Intend to add to it considerably in the future.

    Thanks, all

    John
     
  2. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    Question about the Hub method. Cast recommends one fixture per lead back to the hub at no more than 25ft of 16 gauge wire. I'm in a situation where I need 2 fuxtures at 20W each on one lead back to the hub. Should I up the gauge of the lead wire from 16 to maybe 12 or 14. The total lead length will need to be about 40 feet. Are you saying you want to daisey chain one off the other when one is attached to the hub and the far light is attached to the first light ? I would rather add a longer lead to the 2nd light in a 12ga wire just because what happens if omeone pops a higher wattage bulb in the future.



    I'll have two other leads with a single fixture each, which should be OK and is within Cast specs for leads and single fixtures. I have a single run from the transformer at 35 feet of 12 gauge to the hub and I'm using a Vista 300W MT transformer. Intend to add to it considerably in the future.Add considerably to a 300w trans ? A 300 w trans will run 12 lights at 20w.. I dont see room for considerable expansion here. How many lights are you putting in now ? How many planned for future ? consider 600w ????

    Thanks, all

    John
     
  3. johnquest

    johnquest LawnSite Member
    Posts: 36

    I thought this might be what I should do. Just run a separate longer lead in 12 ga to the more distant fixture. I'm putting in 5 path/area lights (SPJ10-03's) at 18W apiece but will be upgrading the bulbs to 20W. I'm going with a 300W transformer because my house/ yard is small and to light it well will work fine with the 300W. I can still create another run and hub for 5-6 more fixtures. Adding more isn't necessary.

    The way I understand it is that I can have muliple runs even with the single circuit 300W transformer, as long as I don't exceed 25 amps on the common tap. Each of the taps (11-15V) will take up to 4 12ga connections. How does a guy get 4 runs of any significance out of a 300W transformer? At any rate I have the flexibility I need.

    John
     
  4. klkanders

    klkanders LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 848

    John,
    To keep it simple I would put another hub out there where its needed. It is certainly ok to have just 1,2 or 3 fixtures off a hub. If you need to add another home run wire so be it.
     
  5. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    Personally, I think the HUB method of wiring is totally wrong and boarders on un-safe and illegal. I would never use this method for wiring a professionally installed LV lighting system. Do it right, learn your voltage drop formulae, over build it for the future.

    Have a great day.
     
  6. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    I do like the hub in alot of situations. I dont see how it would be illegal in anyways.. maybe north of the border ? As I become more and more profeciant I do find myself lending to other methods of wiring and also creating my own. Properties vary so much its often hard to use any one technique without banging your head on the wall.

    Sometimes I feel the hub is more like the fool proof way to wire things. Its hard for any monkey with a volt meter and calculator to mess it up. I do appreciate the evenvoltage it provides us tho.
     
  7. klkanders

    klkanders LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 848

    Welcome James!
    I agree wiring can be done un-safe but does all hub wiring have to fall under that heading? I started out using the daisy chain, T, and loop methods always keeping in mind voltage drop, amps, etc.. Lately, where design allows it, I have also been using the hub method for some of the same reasons Billy mentioned but still checking the volts, amps as needed.

    I am constantly on the lookout for a better, cost effective and safer way to wire my systems as I believe there may be no right or wrong method for any given job.

    I look forward to reading more of your posts and learning as much as I can from your years of experience! Take Care!
     
  8. Eden Lights

    Eden Lights LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 805

    I like the T method when lighting things that don't grow, move, or change in anyway. I like the hub method or lolli-pops on things that grow, change, and move.
     
  9. steveparrott

    steveparrott Sponsor
    Posts: 1,171

    James, would you care to explain what your thinking is behind your statements?
     
  10. NightScenes

    NightScenes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,206

    Hello John, the best way to handle this situation is to use and additional home run for the 2 fixtures at the end. I know that it might seem like a waste of wire but after many years of doing this I can say that you won't regret it. This will give you better voltage distribution and flexibility.

    I also agree with Billy, you will regret using a 300 watt transformer within a couple of years. I have yet to have a client that didn't add to their minimal system within a couple of years. Then your adding another transformer, timer, photo control and maybe even an outlet.

    Anyway, good luck with your project.
     

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