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Old 01-08-03, 04:55 AM   #1
Lisa
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Rheostat - A How to. Warning Lots of Pics

We decided we needed a few more rheostats and the local petstores sell them for $22 or more. So off to Canadian Tire for the parts. We spent about $9 + tax on the parts, though we used a couple spare power cables that were laying about. If we didn't have them we would have spent an extra $2 to buy a cheap extension cable and hacked one of the ends off, cheaper then buying the wire and plug. katey did the building, I took pictures and made a general nuicence of my self.


Step 1 Assemble the parts needed.



Here you see the parts needed; electrical box, jack, dimmer switch, power cord and front cover plate.


Step 2 Prepare the cord



Here you see we've hacked the end off the cable and thread it through a hole we punched in the electrical box (the box has knock outs for running the cord). You don't have to tie a knot in the cord, but it stops any shorts from happening should the cord be yanked hard enough to dislodge the leads. After threading the cable through you can strip off the leads. we cut off a little extra to be used for internal wiring.


Step 3 Attach the dimmer and ground to the jack.



Here we've attached the ground from the dimmer's ground wire (green) and the power cord ground wire (green) to the ground screw on the jack (green).


Step 4 Attach the hot and neutral wires.



Here we've attached the hot and neutral wires to the dimmer and jack respectively. It doesn't matter which one gets the hot and which one gets the neutral as the amount of current is controled by the dimmer, AC doesn't care about direction. In this image we've also compleated the connection by connecting the dimmer to the jack.


Step 5 Insulate all exposed wire.



Here we've added some tape to the exposed wire as we don't want a short and an electrical fire. Aparrently you can get some fancy plastic thingys but black electrical tape will do too.


Step 6 Put the dimmer and jack in the box.



Here we've put the dimmer and jack in the box and tightened the screws down.


Step 7 Attach the face plate and plastic knob.



I think the title says it all. Careful not to over tighten or you can crack the face plate.


Step 8 Mount in a convienent place.



You don't have to mount it to the shelf unit like we did, you can leave it unmounted pretty much anywhere. This is just conveinent for us.
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Old 01-08-03, 05:12 AM   #2
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Wow!!! What a terrific thread Lisa, thanks for sharing! For Legal reasons I have to say however that any type of electrical work should be done by an expert. We at ssnakess.com don't for obvious reason's want to see anyone get hurt! If you don't know how to wire electrical products, arm yourself with someone who does. Never do any electrical work live (obviously), and make sure you know and recognise what wires do what. As lisa stated, the green is typically your ground wire, or it may be a single or stranded copper wire without any protected coating on it, the white is neutral, and the black is your hot. This is standard for 110-120v a/c type circuits with C.S.A. ratings....it may not however be standard for products produced off shore, so please be 100% in your identification But again, thanks for your time and effort with this post Lisa, well done
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Old 01-08-03, 07:02 AM   #3
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Well Done and Thank You, I will print it out for future referance

Regards
Brian
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Old 01-08-03, 02:06 PM   #4
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Oh on a further note to Shanes post, test the rheostat with a regular incandesant lamp to see where the power picks up and drops off (some dimmers start high and go low and others vice versa). You don't wanna cook your herps thinking you've got them on low power.
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Old 01-08-03, 05:23 PM   #5
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Thats a great post lisa!
Thanks very much.
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Old 01-08-03, 05:26 PM   #6
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thank you, Lisa!
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Old 01-08-03, 08:07 PM   #7
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Very cool post! I use those same dimmers directly on zoomed and other brand UTHs.
Cheers,
Trevor
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Old 01-08-03, 08:23 PM   #8
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Great post Lisa, I am going to be doing this myself soon so this will really help, thank you!!!
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Old 01-08-03, 09:29 PM   #9
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awesome post .. I did the sme but never though of puttin two pluds with the dimmer .. lol its simple and convinient ..

BTW AWESOME POST!

Thanx so much

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Old 01-08-03, 10:29 PM   #10
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Thanks folks, but as I said, katey did all the work, I just took the photos. We put the plug thing so we can control 2 similarly sized tanks, and so the wiring is neater. also it allows us to change what tanks are being controlled.
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Old 01-08-03, 11:00 PM   #11
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i was gonna do something like that.. but got too lazy.. lol..
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Old 01-09-03, 10:53 PM   #12
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reheostats and reptile expo

A couple of people have expressed interest in my building rheostats for them. Because of possible legal ramifications I would be hesitant to do this, however if enough people are interested I would be glad to run a quick class and demo of assembling one at the reptile expo. If enough people email Jeff and ask nice he may let us use a small corner of the SSNAKESS table for the class/demo.

You would supply your own parts based on our listing and I would build a sample unit along with you.

If people are interested drop me a message so i have an idea how much intrest there is.
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Old 01-10-03, 10:59 AM   #13
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EH! this is all confusing to me!! well wiring is different over here...so......yeah! time to call dad!
at least i know what the finished product will look like! looking very smart
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Old 01-10-03, 11:59 AM   #14
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Great post, Thanks
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Old 01-11-03, 12:07 PM   #15
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Katey, unfortunatly if you have been to the shows (which you have) you should remember that our 2 tables are CRAMMED with stuff!! It is a great idea, but.. liablilities also come into play, maybe you should email Grant C and tell him your idea, he could probably get you a table. pcpcmail@rogers.com
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