Multiple fixtures between two 3-way switches

Old 01-20-04, 10:11 PM
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Question Multiple fixtures between two 3-way switches

I want to run 3 (or maybe more) ceiling light fixtures in a middle-of-the-run configuration between two 3-way switches and I can't find a wiring diagram anywhere that shows this. I thought this was a fairly simple and common install; power comes in through my 12-2 wire, through my first 3-way, down the hallway with 12-3 wire through three lights, and ends at my last 3-way switch. I know how to wire a single fixture, but where do I run the neutral for the other fixtures if I'm re-coding the neutral for hot after the first fixture? Do I actually have to run another wire (making it 12-4)? I know I shouldn't wire them in series, so what now?

Thanks for any help!
Old 01-21-04, 04:44 AM
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If you wish to place more than one fixture in the middle then you will need 12-4 wire between the fixtures.

I am not sure why you would want to do this. It would be much quicker (and easier to understand) if you make your connections with one fixture in the middle and then go from that fixture to the other two fixtures.
Old 01-21-04, 04:46 AM
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Yes you need another wire. Between the light you must run a 12/4 - 1 for neutral, 1 for switched hot, 2 for travellers. It best to run 12/2 from the switch to the lights. Then run a 12/3 from the first switch to the second switch direct.
Old 01-21-04, 07:15 AM
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Multiple fixtures between two 3-way switches is possible, using the techniques provided by Bob and Joe, but it's just a bad idea. Here are two better alternatives, where "-" means a 14/2 and "=" means a 14/3.

(1) S1=S2-L1-L2-L3
(2) S1=L1=S2, and L1-L2-L3

Whenever feasible, I suggest (1) since the connections are the most straightforward.

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