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Old 03-16-2010, 10:17 PM   #1
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load switch?


I need some help. I want to switch between two different lights without cutting any power to my ballast. I know I could do this with two different timers, but I would like to have one box between the ballast and the two bulbs to do this function. Just wondering if there is such a product made or if I can create something to work.
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Old 03-16-2010, 10:23 PM   #2
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You want a light switch that will switch between the two bulbs, is that right? Do you want this on some sort of timer? Do you want the switch on the wall?
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Old 03-16-2010, 11:03 PM   #3
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I gotta ask.

what is the purpose?
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Old 03-17-2010, 05:54 AM   #4
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Sounds to me like you want to switch two lamps separately off the same ballast. Don't think that's possible from a single input ballast.
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:25 AM   #5
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Why couldn't he put a 3-way switch between the ballast and the lamps? Feed the ballast into the common, each traveler into a separate lamp.

I'm also curious why.
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secutanudu View Post
Why couldn't he put a 3-way switch between the ballast and the lamps? Feed the ballast into the common, each traveler into a separate lamp.

I'm also curious why.
A switch does not control the output of a ballast it controls the input to the ballast. A 3- way could not do that anyway. One or the other would be one all the time if you did connect a 3-way that way.
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:31 AM   #7
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Could you explain in more detail why my idea wouldn't work? I believe you, just not understanding fully.
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Old 03-17-2010, 06:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secutanudu View Post
Why couldn't he put a 3-way switch between the ballast and the lamps? Feed the ballast into the common, each traveler into a separate lamp.

I'm also curious why.
Voltage rating of the switch comes to mind.

The output voltage on a ballast is far more than the input voltage.
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Old 03-17-2010, 09:34 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by secutanudu View Post
Why couldn't he put a 3-way switch between the ballast and the lamps? Feed the ballast into the common, each traveler into a separate lamp.

I'm also curious why.

so, IF you could find a switch that was rated for the voltage (you need to research what the output voltage of a ballast can be), you have to realize that first, we don't even know what kind of ballast we are dealing with. Is this a fluorescent lamp? HID?

If a fluorescent; instant start? rapid start?

if fluorescent, you have to realize there are at least 2 wires that run to the lamp and up to 4 wires. How are you controlling that many wires with your system?





why I asked what the purpose is is basically because the simplest way to do what he wants might simply be to use 2 ballasts with each connected to their own lamp.
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Old 03-17-2010, 04:55 PM   #10
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This is actually for something that I am trying with my saltwater tank filtration between two different refugiums. It is a MH ballast. I would like to take one commom wire from the ballast into a timed switch box with two lines out, one to each bulb. I imagine it to work similar to a mechanical timer. Except instead of on and off, the timed switch would transfer the power from one bulb to the other without actually shutting the ballast down. This device would do the job of two timers on the output side of the ballast.
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Old 03-17-2010, 04:56 PM   #11
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Would there be any way to safely modify a mechanical timer to do this?
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Old 03-17-2010, 05:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Would there be any way to safely modify a mechanical timer to do this?

I doubt you will find a switch rated to take the voltage. Depending on what kind of lamp and ballast you have, you could experience thousands of volts on start up.


why don't you just install a second ballast?
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:21 PM   #13
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just looking for alternative options, other than shelling out money for another ballast
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Old 03-18-2010, 11:28 PM   #14
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Quote:
just looking for alternative options,
I do not think there is a practical alternative.
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