hard wire to plug in?

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  #1  
Old 02-10-06, 06:18 AM
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hard wire to plug in?

I want to convert two three-light bath bars from hard wire to plug in, preferably both on one plug.

I've done hard wiring before (light fixtures, ceiling fans, outlets, etc.) but I've never converted anything like this. I guess my question would be if I can just use the same type of wiring a lamp would use or are there going to be voltage concerns?

Lorraine
 
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  #2  
Old 02-10-06, 09:23 AM
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Last edited by bolide; 02-10-06 at 04:31 PM.
  #3  
Old 02-10-06, 11:12 AM
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Question I'm not sure...

if I made it clear what I'm trying to do. I don't want this hard wired at all. I don't even want to use it as a "bath bar". I just want it to be a light fixture on the order of a lamp, not attached to a wall or the integral wiring of the house. I want to be able to set it on a table and plug it in.

Lorraine
 
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Old 02-10-06, 04:28 PM
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Originally Posted by lorraineg57
I don't want this hard wired at all.
Of course, it has no UL listing for this. I'm not clear on how you are securing the conductors. You'll need a box of some sort on the back and grommet for the cord.


Now, two factors:
Length of cord, and total wattage of bulbs.

You didn't say.
18 AWG lamp cord can handle one or two bulbs.
It sounds like you will have six bulbs.
Use 16AWG three-wire lamp cord and a three-prong plug.

(If you use two-wire and put everyone around you at risk of shock, the plug must be polarized, and the lamp shell must be connected to the white wire.)

Don't let anyone get hurt. Preferably plug into a GFCI protected outlet.
 
  #5  
Old 02-10-06, 05:15 PM
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bulbs..

six 25 watt bulbs will be used. I'm attaching these vertically to a large mirror to replicate a makeup mirror (tabletop). I realize I'll have to close off the back area of the lights that would abutt the wall if they were placed on a wall if that's what you mean by needing a box. The three black wires are piggybacked into one, likewise for the white wires (per unit). The cord will be around 6'.

Thanks for the respnse BTW.


Lorraine
 
  #6  
Old 02-11-06, 12:32 AM
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Originally Posted by lorraineg57
six 25 watt bulbs will be used.
But can you trust that no one will ever put in something bigger?
I would not.


> The cord will be around 6'.

Plus I suppose you need a length running between the two sides also.

Get 16/3 (or even better, 14/3) SO cord.
It is much, much more durable than lamp cord and it won't melt and burn if someone changes to 100W bulbs. For the extra 5 or $6, you won't be worried about whether what you got is heavy-duty enough to handle the job.
 
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Old 02-11-06, 05:03 AM
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Actually 18 gauge 2-wire (even with ground) flexible lamp cord is rated at 10 amps. 16ga is rated at 13 amps.
For 18ga this is 1200 watts.

The one glaring problem is 400.8(1). We CANNOT use flexible cord as a substitute for permanent wiring. I guess if this project is done right, and these lights are simply hung on a nail, it is probably a loop hole exception. Sort of like an old swag lamp.
 
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Old 02-11-06, 06:37 AM
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Question I'm not familiar...

enough with the technical jargon to understand what this means?

"The one glaring problem is 400.8(1). We CANNOT use flexible cord as a substitute for permanent wiring. I guess if this project is done right, and these lights are simply hung on a nail, it is probably a loop hole exception. Sort of like an old swag lamp."

I don't see where I would be using flexible cord as a sub for permanet wiring? I'd just be attaching the proper cord (14/3?) to the existing hard wiring in the fixture to allow me to plug it into the wall outlet.

Lorraine
 
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Old 02-11-06, 06:48 AM
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Lorraine,

The fixtures are designed to be wall mounted and permanently installed. As such they require traditional permament wiring. Your use of these lights in this manner is niot what the manufacturer intended, and as such violates code. That is what Speedey is pointing out.
 
  #10  
Old 02-11-06, 07:03 AM
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Oh...well I knew that...

I just want to be sure that it's done safely. I should be okay if I do the 14/3 cord and three prong plug? I really can't see anyone using this aside from me it will be in our bedroom on a vanity. Anything brighter than 25 watt bulbs would be blinding on a makeup mirror anyhow. I might actually have to drop it down to 15w, I don't know yet. I keep trying to talk hubby into my very own bathroom for this purpose but to no avail.

Thanks to all who replied and patiently explained.

Lorraine
 
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Old 02-11-06, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by lorraineg57
I should be okay if I do the 14/3 cord and three prong plug?
No. The heavier SO cord is more durable than lamp cord (which does get hot as its capacity is reached).

We could not come to your house and install such a thing.

But if you are a USA resident, you are legally allowed to build your own lamp out of anything that you wish, wire it anyway you like, and give it your own stamp of approval.

Just keep in mind that such a thing does not have a UL listing to be used - meaning no independent safety tests were conducted. If it shocks you or catches fire, you have no recourse against anyone.
 
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Old 02-11-06, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by bolide
No. The heavier SO cord is more durable than lamp cord (which does get hot as its capacity is reached).
Are you saying for this project she needs 14/3 SO cord or more????
Sounds WAY overkill.
Do you disagree with 400.5(A) Column B ?
 
  #13  
Old 02-12-06, 11:12 AM
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Okay...

so is there a common consensus here as to what kind of wiring I need to buy? I'm just getting more confused...

Lorraine
 
  #14  
Old 02-12-06, 01:39 PM
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18ga 3-wire cord is fine.

Ever see an eight or ten light UL listed chandelier wired with #18 zip cord? All the time right?
 
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Old 02-12-06, 04:04 PM
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Thanks so much.

18 ga 3 wire it is then. Thanks again!

Lorraine
 
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Old 02-13-06, 12:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Speedy Petey
Are you saying for this project she needs 14/3 SO cord or more????
Already asked and answered above.

> Do you disagree with 400.5(A) Column B?
No. This does not address durability nor actual operating temperature.

I believe that Lorraine wants a cord that inherent durability and strength which I don't believe that #18 lamp cord offers, and she does not want it to feel warm at all during operation. What I call lamp cord is flat with two conductors. What I recommended is 16/3 SO which round, service-duty cord, with three conductors, and much easier to clamp. Salvaging an old computer cord would be fine.
 
  #17  
Old 02-13-06, 03:55 AM
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Originally Posted by bolide
This does not address durability nor actual operating temperature.
Operating temperature??? So you are saying in her bed room or bath there will regularly be ambient temps over 86 deg. F.??




Originally Posted by bolide
I believe that Lorraine wants a cord that inherent durability and strength which I don't believe that #18 lamp cord offers, and she does not want it to feel warm at all during operation.
Where'd you read this? I looked back over all the posts and fine nothing that says she is using this light in the shop, garage or farm. SO cord???



I'm not saying it has to be lamp cord. Any 3-wire cord will do. As you just said, an old computer cord will even do. This is a FAR cry from SO cord.
 
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