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[...] whenever dealing with powering portable dimmers, follow these guidelines: * Always read the specifications of any equipment before applying power * Never power a device using voltage other than the rated voltage of a device * Only qualified personnel should attempt to configure power distribution equipment A circuit breaker is designed to protect against an overload or a short circuit. When you are powering a portable dimmer from a branch circuit (meaning the circuit fed from a common circuit breaker in the final leg of the power distribution), then the rated voltage of the device should match the voltage of the circuit.
Correction Powering Portable Dimmers in the Theatre [We at Stage Directions made an error that we would like to a 15-amp, 20-amp, 30-amp, or more, device. If it has correct immediately. In the process we hope to open new por- an Edison plug (NEMA 5-15) then it should be a 15-A tals of discovery for the practicing theatre electrician or techni- device. If it has a 20-amp plug (NEMA 5-20) then it cian. Richard Cadena, editor of PLSN magazine and an ETCP will still work with an Edison T-slot receptacle (NEMA Certified Entertainment Electrician and an ETCP Recognized 5-20R) because it is a 20-amp circuit that works with Trainer, explains more below. —Jacob Coakley, editor, Stage 15A and 20A plugs. If the device needs more than 20 Directions] amps then it should have a connector that will not plug into an Edison receptacle. I n the article “Mind Over Fiscal Matters” by Dave McGinnis In a 120/208V four wire plus ground system (green, in the March issue of Stage Directions, there were some white, black, red, and blue wires), the voltage across inaccuracies. The subject of concern centers on the any hot leg (black, red, or blue wire) to the white proper application of portable dimmers, supply capacity to neutral conductor is 120V and the voltage across any feed those dimmers, and overcurrent protection devices, two hot lets on different phases is 208V. A 208V circuit commonly known as circuit breakers. uses a double-ganged circuit breaker with two poles that feed from two hot legs on different phases. These In short, whenever dealing with powering portable branch circuits are typically connected to a locking dimmers, follow these guidelines: receptacle such as a NEMA L6-15 or an L6-20. There are • Always read the specifications of any a few different connectors that could be used for 208V equipment before applying power devices, so if the portable dimmer pack doesn’t have • Never power a device using voltage other an Edison connector, then be sure to check the specs than the rated voltage of a device and match the voltage to the circuit correctly. • Only qualified personnel should attempt Portable dimmers that have two power cables are to configure power distribution equipment using two distinct circuits to double their dimmer capacity. For example, the Leprecon ULD-360 dimmer A circuit breaker is designed to protect against an has two NEMA 5-15 plugs. Each plug is capable of sup- overload or a short circuit. In North American theatres plying 15A at 120V, which is 1800 watts. By using two we most often use a molded case single-pole circuit power cables, a single dimmer pack can supply 3600 breaker, meaning it switches only one wire, which is watts. This is typically done so that you can us
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