Two 3-way switches: pilot light and regular

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Old 02-23-10, 12:33 PM
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Two 3-way switches: pilot light and regular

I have an electrical box currently fed by two wires: a 12-3 from a 3-way pilot light switch and a 12-2 from the source. I want to control a new (to be installed) ligth fixture from this pre-exising 3-way pilot light switch and a new regular 3-way switch (no pilot light). I can change anything but the existing 3-way switch and its 12-3 connection (feeding an additional cable is not an option at this point). Can anybody please explain me how to wire this, ideally even send me a diagram? I'm pretty sure the exising pilot light switch is a 3-way switch as right next to it is an identical swich working in a 3-way circuit, plus markings around the electrical box indicate there used to be a light fixture plus a second switch connect to it.

Thanks for your help in advance.
 
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Old 02-23-10, 01:54 PM
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I have an electrical box currently fed by two wires: a 12-3 from a 3-way pilot light switch and a 12-2 from the source.
Just to be clear on terminology you have a 2-conductor cable and a 3-conductor cable not wires. More then one conductor/wire in a sheath is a cable not wire.
I want to control a new (to be installed) light fixture from this pre-existing 3-way pilot light
Will the existing 3-way switch still control the existing light. If so it can come off the other 3-way switch or the existing lights at the point where switched power comes in.
and a new regular 3-way switch (no pilot light)
If this is just another switch on the existing circuit you would add a 4-way switch interrupting the neutrals between the 3-ways..

Key here is am I correct the new light is just to be added to the existing lights?
 
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Old 02-23-10, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by ray2047 View Post
If this is just another switch on the existing circuit you would add a 4-way switch interrupting the neutrals between the 3-ways..
Im not sure that you break the neutrals with a 4way. 4way has 4 screws, i believe you break the travelers of the 3 way circut.
 
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Old 02-23-10, 02:21 PM
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Sorry, cables not wires. Needless to say that this is not my first language ..

There is no existing light, and there is no real existing circuit. All I have at the moment is the 3-way pilot light switch (not controling anthing at the moment), a 12-3 from it to a box, and a 12-2 going from the source to the same box. That's it. I want to add a light fixture in the room where this box is, plus a second 3-way switch (but this one without pilot light). I'm pretty sure this is what used to be installed in the house in the past, but it got partially dismantled in the past and all I have are the leftovers. So finally I will have two switches, one with and one without pilot light, no 4-way business necessary I think.

My main concern is around the 12-3 connected to the exising pilot light switch. I have seen wiring diagrams that should do the job but they would require a 12-4, but changing this cable or adding another one is not an option at the moment. Everything else I can change. I'm sure though there has to be a solution, mainly because the second switch I want to install will NOT have a pilot light, and more so because I have another circuit in the house where the same pilot light switch type connected to a 12-3 is doing exactly the fuctionality I want.

Thanks for your help!
 
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