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Old 09-17-2010, 12:19 PM   #1
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lamp socket


i'm reworking a pair of lamps that have a socket that controls the lamp itself (med base 3 way) and some small lamps (small base) down in the base of the lamp. as you cycle through the (rotating knob) switch, the base lights come on, then both base and main lamp low, then med, then high, then lamp only, and off. you get the idea. anyway the socket/swiches are about shot. anyone know what these sockets are called? they have 3 terminal screws, power in, power out (to base lights) and neutral. thanks

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Old 09-17-2010, 12:29 PM   #2
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I think it's just called a 3-terminal socket. See here, at the bottom: http://www.bplampsupply.com/help/15HowToSockets.php

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Old 09-17-2010, 12:39 PM   #3
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hey that's close. just doesn't 3 way (lamp that is). thanks!
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:46 PM   #4
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Oh, I missed that part. You need 3-terminal and 3-way in the same socket? That probably will be a little tough. I did some searching for you, but I haven't come up with anything.
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Old 09-17-2010, 04:04 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimPa View Post
i'm reworking a pair of lamps that have a socket that controls the lamp itself (med base 3 way) and some small lamps (small base) down in the base of the lamp. as you cycle through the (rotating knob) switch, the base lights come on, then both base and main lamp low, then med, then high, then lamp only, and off. you get the idea. anyway the socket/swiches are about shot. anyone know what these sockets are called? they have 3 terminal screws, power in, power out (to base lights) and neutral. thanks
I think you need to take a closer look at how the lamp is currently wired. With three terminals on the switch, and BTW there is no neutral at the switch, you only have three possible ON conditions. Your example above requires five ON conditions. How is the wire currently set up in these lamps?
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Old 09-17-2010, 06:02 PM   #6
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the socket has 3 screws - hot (power supply coming in), neutral (for the lamp bulb in the socket), and power out (this wire carries the switched hot to the bulbs in the base of the lamp). you're right, neutral doesn't get switched in the lamp, or anywhere else for that matter. neutral is tapped off lower in the lamp for the bulbs in the base.

btw, i thought i found it with sockets called "2 circuit 3 way" but they only had 2 screws. 2 circuit?

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Old 02-23-2011, 01:09 PM   #7
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First off, TimPa, it sounds like your lamp switch has about 6 different positions including off, which is definitely not a standard lamp switch. Also sounds like it's controlling 3 different circuits (1-the lights in the lamp base, 2-the low-wattage filament in the main lamp, and 3-the medium-wattage filament in the main lamp). So the type of switch you probably need is a 3-pole 6-throw (3P6T) rotary switch. I checked at DigiKey and nothing came up, so good luck in that search. If that switch was molded together with the socket, then your only hope is probably an exact replacement... start scouring the flea markets!

Now, as to why a 3-way socket only has 2 terminals on it, it's probably quite simple... It's because the switch is built into the socket. All the switch needs is hot and neutral coming into it, and internally it switches power to the 2 hot contacts inside the socket. If you want a 3-way socket with all 3 terminals exposed, search for a "3-way keyless socket." That's what it's called when it's a bare socket with no built-in switch. The 3-way versions are not very common, but they are available.

TimPa, if you really can't find your 3P6T rotary switch anywhere, then consider this: Simply get a 3-way socket with a 3-way switch to rewire the main lamp. Buy a regular on-off pushbutton switch, drill a hole in the lamp body somewhere, and install the pushbutton switch to control the lights in the base of the lamp.
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Old 02-23-2011, 04:30 PM   #8
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Another option would be to reduce the number of possible lighting combinations from 5 down to 3. 3P4T switches are commonly available, like this one: http://search.digikey.com/scripts/Dk...ame=CKN6043-ND

You could wire this for Off --> Base lamps only --> Low wattage main lamp only --> All lamps together.

The problem with using these switches as lamp switches in my mind is that they don't go all the way around 180-degrees in a clockwise-only progression. You can click up from Off > 1 > 2 > 3, but then rotation stops and you have to go back the other way 3 > 2 > 1 > Off to turn the light off. And of course, with the tiny little pins on that switch, you've got to know how to solder in order to wire it up.

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