Mad Scientists Light


Step 4:

Here is the insides of the box/base where you can see the back side of the light bulb sockets as well as the back end of the dimmer switch and all the interconnecting wires. the Sockets were wired in parallel (one linking to another like a daisy chain) with one end of the power cord connected to the daisy chain of sockets, and the other end of the power cord connected to the dimmer switch.
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anim8er5 years ago
Before getting to this page, I was going to suggest wiring the bulbs in series and do away with the dimmer altogether. As you found out, wiring the bulbs in series causes them to be dimmed. If that is how you want it, the dimmer is then unnecessary. (You would still want a regular switch.)
series wiring decreasse the voltage to each bulb (divided by 4 in this case) but also decreasse total consumption in AMPs (divided by 4 in this case)
so wiring in paralel have advantages: 4times more power to each bulb
and wiring in series also have advantages: 4times less power consumption thant series wiring
"garry" its possible you have it right in your head, but what you wrote was a little confusing and sounded wrong so i just wana clarify for people referring to this instructable for learning purposes...

Volts x Amps = Watts
Wattage=Power Consumption

The power consumed by the lights will not change dramatically by wiring the lights in series or parallel. The lights "require" a specific wattage, eg. 60w, and besides adding a dimmer, will just "automatically" get it.

By wiring the lights in series, you increase the amount of resistance in the circuit, and this reduces the voltage like was pointed out already. But it does NOT reduce the amount of power you are using. If you refer the the formula I wrote above and keep in mind the Wattage is going to be constant, you can understand how when the voltage decreases the light will respond by increasing the amount of amperage. In fact this is how many house fires are caused because amperage causes heat. The old christmas lights without the fuses could get so hot they'd melts when you plugged to many strings into eachother like this.

The ONLY way to reuce the power consumption in a light circut like this is with a dimmer, and not all dimmers qualify. The modern Levitron dimmersw you pay about $20 a piece for DO reduce the power consumption, but the old style only reduce light output and not consumption.

Hope that was helpful :)

 if its writen 60w on a buld it will be 60watt on its nominal voltage ex:120v

let calc internal resistance of the bulb


R=120/0.5=240 omhs

now let see if at 60volts it stay at 60w (60volts 1 amp)

as you can see, according to ohm law, if voltage to buld decreasse, amp decreasse too
Gary has it correct. In parallel, each bulb gets 120volts. Wired in series, for 4 bulbs, then each bulb only gets 30volts. The 120volts is divided across all 4 bulbs in series, but individually, they get a fraction of the total voltage drop.

The reverse is true. Standard batteries are 1.5 volts each. Wire them in series and the voltages add up. Lots of items use 3 batteries wired in series to produce 4.5volts. Close enough to power electronics meant for 5volts.
(I know very little about electrical) Ive connected it in the same fashion as you've described here and i can only get a dim light out of the bulbs, it worked bright with only one (tested it when i started) is there a way to boost it, or is it the way ive set it up
Xilinx6 years ago
It's a fuzzy pic but the next photo clearly shows them wired in parallel. All the Hot(Black wires) tied together and all the Neutral(White wires) tied together.

I'm not saying, I'm just saying
coderj7 years ago
Sockets were wired in parallel (one linking to another like a daisy chain)
Actually, that's wiring them in series. Parallel is when all 4 share the same ungrounded coming off the dimmer, and the same grounded going to the dimmer.