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How to match up cables...


ezimnow

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I purchased some 18/3 cable but it came in all Black not like  the RWB wires on the Pixels. Since the middle cable is always Data can I just pick one other  for the Hot and mark it and just make sure I use the same end hot to hot and ground to ground?

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When making your cables. I would use a multi-meter to do a continuity check just to make sure.

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Its not the node Direction I'm concerned with as I can see the Data flow direction on the node it self with the Arrow but with this 18/3 its all black so usually I would get Red White and Blue or some other color distinction but this is all black and I wanted to be sure that i had hot to hot and ground to ground. Data isn't an issue as its always the center cable..So JT how do I do a Continuity test ..I have a Multimeter but never used it ?


I have a feeling you knew that question was coming....lol

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If it is flat cable there is usually a ridge or a small spine that you can feel on the side like on SPT wire. This is used to mark the hot wire.

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You may find that one of more wires are marked - even if they're all black.  For example it is common on flat "ribbon" cable to have one of the outer wires have a ribbed surface and the other outer edge wire to have a smooth surface.  The standard I use is ribbed = + voltage.

 

To answer your question about how to do a continuity test, it's easy.  On your multimeter, there should be one or more ranges on the function knob for Ohms or resistance.  Set the knob to a higher number setting.  With the test probes not connected to anything you should get a reading that indicates an open circuit (it varies depending on the meter).  If you touch the two probes together you should get a reading of zero (or a very low number).  Now you know what the meter will display.  Instead of touching the meter probes together, connect one probe to each end of the piece of wire (you may have to strip a little insulation off the wire ends to be able to do this).

 

BTW, some meters have a position that will beep when there is continuity.  This is even easier because you don't even have to look at the meter.

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Perfect...thanks Jim  and everyon else...Yes, this is the  Flat ribbon cable so I'll check for a Rib as well as use my Multimeter for testing now that I know how. 

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As a  side note Jim, I went to your  YOUTUBE videos and searched  as I thought for sure you would have something out there on this subject but never found this one. Thanks again for posting it here 

Edited by ezimnow
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Also if you meter doesn't have a "beep"er {continuity setting}, you can build one very easily and won't cost much if you can find the parts in a surplus store like skycraft.com for example.

 

All you need is a 1.5vdc Piezo buzzer, an AAA or AA single battery holder, some wire, i.e. black and red wire, {can be long if you want] and a couple of probes{optional}, you can just tin the ends of the wires for probes.

 

Just connect the black wire to the - {negative} side of the battery holder you selected{the other end of this wire is your - negative probe}, connect the red wire to the + {positive} side of the Piezo buzzer, connect another piece of red wire to the - {negative} side of the piezo buzzer {this will be your + positive test probe}.  Now if you touch the end of the black and red wires together, you should hear the buzzer sound off.    Simple, inexpensive continuity tester!  This can all be mounted in a small box with the battery and buzzer, and have the wires run out for the probes, it's however you want to build it to make it easier for you to use.  However DO NOT use this to check or test for continuity on LIVE wires!

 

BTW: you aren't limited to 1.5VDC, you can use any voltage buzzer {usually not more than 9VDC} and the proper battery{ies} to supply the voltage.  Wiring would still be the same.

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