How to Wire 3 Switches to a Table Lamp?


Postby Mira9 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 5:05 pm

Hello,
I'm completing an art project and I need some help. I have some basic electrical knowledge and some experience, mostly wiring lamps etc.
I want a regular table lamp connected to 3 toggle switches. The idea is that the lamp turns on once you move all three switches to ON position and the lamp only turns off once you move all three switches to OFF position.
Is it at all possible to wire it that way or am I getting ahead of myself?
I'd greatly appreciate any help.
Thank you
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Postby kbrownie » Mon Apr 17, 2017 7:45 pm

No you would not be able to do this using a standard rocker switches, as once you turn one switch off the circuit is then open/broken.

Therefore two switches would be closed and one open and circuit incomplete.
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Postby ericmark » Tue Apr 18, 2017 8:34 am

You can have:-
With on/off is series all must be on for light to be on.

With on/off in parallel all must be off for light to be off.

With two change over or single pole two way and with one double pole two way the latter often called a reversing or intermediate switch you can have any switch put light on or off. You can add as many intermediate switches as you like but only 2 two way switches.

Next is using master / slave system not seen as toggle, but common with dimming switches here the slave switches tell master what to do.

We also have "If this then that" switches (ITTT) these normally connect to a hub and you can get apps to do all sorts. In the main these are push switches rather than toggle, The fact it goes to central hub means sky is limit, be it a simple PIC, or full blown PLC the difference is how complex the programming is. To be frank I never got my head around programming PIC's but I was well into PLC programming, today there are some half way devices which are quite cheap raspberry pi and Arduino I have played with latter seem to remember it uses java script.

In this room I have an Energenie MiHome light switch, this can be controlled with up to 5 devices, one being the hub, the hub connect to router, and router connects to my computer, I can select ready written programs or apps or use simple timers or remote controls or my phone. I can if I wish have the light turn on if there is a poor weather forecast. Or dusk to dawn for example. Connect it to door contact or PIR is another option.

I forgot to set up two way switching and the MiHome light switch can be controlled with a remote control which is what I am doing so I can switch it on/off without getting out of bed. Simple two way switching would do the same.

With logic control we write a truth table, we can use simple gates NAND NOR AND or OR gates. You can get what we call a bread board which allows you to play connecting IC's together. Name comes from a very old idea of getting a bit of wood and hammering in nails then stringing the components between the nails soldering them on, back in the 50's this was how you made a prototype.

Maplin still do kits to play with, but today don't need soldering iron, hammer or nails, it uses either series of connected holes or springs to connect the wires.
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