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  1. #21
    Soaring like an Eagle gary67's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Bloody French no wonder we hate them so much

  2. #22
    X Tech pheonix's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    I have been told we changed colours to the European standard due to a form common colour blindness. I can't recall which colours of red , black and green that were mixed up , but 2 of them were indistinguishable.
    Hence also why the green has the yellow stripe through it to further distinguish the safety earth wire.
    Ever stop to think, and forgot to start again?

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by pheonix View Post
    I have been told we changed colours to the European standard due to a form common colour blindness. I can't recall which colours of red , black and green that were mixed up , but 2 of them were indistinguishable.
    Hence also why the green has the yellow stripe through it to further distinguish the safety earth wire.
    I heard that as well. Many people have trouble distinguishing between red and green.

  4. #24
    Superanuitant Poppa John's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by Safari View Post
    I heard that as well. Many people have trouble distinguishing between red and green.

    Nah, you're thinking off traffic lights not wire coulours.And yes the colour change was to match the continental colour system. They would not buy British machinery otherwise. Didn't stop them accepting Free Wrong Coloured Wire Machinery tho. PJ
    Deafness.
    When I was younger I heard but didn't listen.
    Now I am older, I listen but cannot hear.

    If it is not broke, don't make it broker by trying to make it better. (This applies specifically to PJ)

  5. #25
    In a 1920s time warp Terry Porritt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by Poppa John View Post
    Nah, you're thinking off traffic lights not wire coulours.And yes the colour change was to match the continental colour system. They would not buy British machinery otherwise. Didn't stop them accepting Free Wrong Coloured Wire Machinery tho. PJ
    It was somewhat even worse than that Poppa, not just different colours. At the time I worked in the machine tool industry, UK was on 240v, most of Europe including Germany, France, Italy were on 220 volts, with corresponding 3 phase voltages. I think Switzerland was 230 v.

    So machine tool equipment sold to europe had to conform to their standards, and we had to supply 220v/380v gear.

    It didn't stop there, though generally in the UK we designed and built to British Standards, some of the larger firms had their own in house standards.
    So for example to sell to British Leyland, we had to alter designs a tad to conform to British Leyland......no wonder they went down the tubes.

    The Longbridge place was also "full" of saboteurs, especially on night shift. Equipment would be working ok at the end of day shift, and wrecked/seized up at end of night shift.

    SKF at Luton was interesting, they had 240v/100Hz supply around the factory which was used to to power high speed-high power internal grinding spindles. This meant that motors ran at 6000rpm which was much easier on the belt drives when running a spindle at around 30,000/50,000rpm at 10 Hp

  6. #26
    6146-B Billy T's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by Safari View Post
    I heard that as well. Many people have trouble distinguishing between red and green.
    Red-green colour blindness is quite common. When I was training we were checked for this disability right at the start and you couldn't enter the electrical or electronics trades if you failed. Testing continued at least until the mid 1980's because I knew a young man who was rejected for an electrical apprenticeship because he was R-G colour blind. He went off and joined the Krishnas instead.

    Apparently he had no dress sense or musical ability either.

    Cheers

    Billy 8-{)
    Some days it's not even worth chewing through my restraints!

  7. #27
    Smiling Down On Youse SurferJoe46's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by wmoore View Post
    The USA colours are

    Black-Live
    White-neutral
    Green-Earth
    Close!

    Black is hot, like you said, and the white is Neutral.

    The BARE copper wire is ground AND is tied with the WHITE.

    Our wiring is (in the same conduit) one-each of the following:

    WHITE
    BLACK
    BARE COPPER.

    IF there's a GREEN in the sheath, then it's tied to the case ground of the appliance and conduit or j-box.

    This is ONLY true in a home-run from the panel to the outlet/receptacle. IF the Romex is a switch-leg, then both the BLACK & the WHITE are considered HOT.

    GREEN wires don't usually get called out in wiring, as they are considered CASE or EQUIPMENT GROUNDS only and are not usually allowed to carry any current unless something fails. The true ground is "floating" and is considered "potential" and returns along with the WHITE/BARE wire in the same sheath or Romex.

    Pix #1 is called "12-2" Romex, and has the required WHITE - BLACK & BARE wire of equal sizes in it. It carries 110-118V on the Black leg and returns to the distribution panel via the WHITE wire for a complete circuit. The BARE wire acts as a ground and is also tied to the WHITE-COMMON bus in that same panel or "d-box" as we call it.

    Pix #2 is called "12-3" Romex and can carry two separate 110-118V circuits with the RED and the BLACK as HOT legs, the WHITE as the common return and the bare again acting as an auxiliary ground and protection for the circuit should the WHITE fail or become resistive.

    12-3 can ALSO be used to combine both the RED and the BLACK legs for 220-240V power, using the WHITE and the BARE as both grounds. 220V does NOT require a ground to make it work as the hot legs are sufficient to carry the current at 220V.

    In the US we actually have dual-voltages in our homes for whatever needs and power we have to have for a loaded or motor-circuit or just lower power for things like lighting.

    Pix #3 is a typical d-box or power panel.
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  8. #28
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by SurferJoe46 View Post
    Pix #3 is a typical d-box or power panel.
    Are those punch-down (IDC) terminations in Pix #3 ??

  9. #29
    Smiling Down On Youse SurferJoe46's Avatar
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by decibel View Post
    Are those punch-down (IDC) terminations in Pix #3 ??
    By that I think you've seen some of those press-in connections in 1990s mobile homes in the US.

    The ones depicted here are screw and flange type connections with a screw pressing down - if not on the bared wire itself - on a "shoe" that shields the wire from the actual screw.

    Across the top of the box are three heavy cables (the "pole-drop from the electrical provider) that are locked into three "buses" that are (in order) "A-leg", "B" Leg, "Common Leg".

    You can see these buses as the aluminum bars with all the set screws and wires terminating in them. Notice there are three bus bars. The COMMON Bus has a cable coming into it with a white marker (just visible at the top of the pix) to signify it's classification and it is the right farthest bus in the d-box.

    Alternately, the breakers take power from both the "A" and "B" legs, and it is designed to have the two voltages occur in the same slot so that the doubled voltage of 220-288 can be sent through the same pair of wires in the same conduit or Romex.

    Many times I have installed "minis" in these positions to get two separate legs sent down the same conduit, only to break off in the same receptacle box to provide power for two heavy draw 120V devices like a dishwasher and a disposal receptacle under the same kitchen sink. It just makes it a lot easier to make one "home-run" with the wires, carrying two distinct and different phases of 120V power.

    Each leg (A & B) are 120-130 volts AC and the common is used as a return to the utility company.

    Together, both A + B equals 240 volts. For this voltage, the common is not called into use as a return.

    There are several interchangeable voltages in the US that range from 110V to 128 V on each leg and together they can equal 208 Volts to 288 volts - don't ask me how, it's "just so".

    Some older systems had 108-117V on each leg, but they are almost all gone by now. Our appliances and devices can operate on a fairly broad array of voltages, as long as the values are within some logical limits.

    We have TRIAD and DELTA, which is a type of transformer design, that can be used interchangeably, but the trend is to go TRIAD and 117V/288V.

    It might sound confusing, but if you born here, you'd understand a lot better.

    NZ 220 volt-single leg stuff is kinda nuts-o to me.

    I'm including a mobile home "snap-in" box that takes a wire and presses it between two sharp posts that both strips the wire at that point and makes an electrical connection, These are cheap, but somehow they work and don't have any real troubles. I had them in my last home in Hemet, and they never gave me any troubles. They were just nasty to work with if you needed to make changes and modifications, that's all.
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  10. #30
    Old dick-head
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    Default Re: Electrical wiring colours

    Quote Originally Posted by SurferJoe46 View Post
    NZ 220 volt-single leg stuff is kinda nuts-o to me.
    Noo - it's easy, what we would call "a piece of piss"

    We are just like all the rest of the world - oh! except for you guys.

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