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What cables to use within a HA cabinet?


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On 15/11/2021 at 00:15, Dan F said:

@Hilldes Did you decide on a colour code?

 

Off the top of my head (but welcome advice)...

 

230v - brown and blue.

24v power supply - Orange (+ve) and white (-ve) as per Loxone.

Loxone Tree - assume using pairs extracted from Cat6 so green and green/white.

Loxone link - assume using pairs extracted from Cat6 so blue and blue/white.

RGBW 24v - using this cable from cabinet to LED strips. Hmmm colours of cores in this cable are: Brown, Black, Grey, Blue and Green/Yellow. Not sure I could used these colours inside the cabinet.

 

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I've been taking a look at this too:

 

4 hours ago, Hilldes said:

230v - brown and blue.

Some people use black rather than browm, but (light) blue is a must, as is yellow/green for earth.

 

4 hours ago, Hilldes said:

24v power supply - Orange (+ve) and white (-ve) as per Loxone.

This one is interesting:

- Loxone use orange/white.

- The US (and the old version of the IEC standard) use red/black

- New IEC standard is brown/grey

- EN 60204-1 recommends dark blue + white (with blue).

 

Most people seem to use a mix of red/black (tri-rated) and orange/white (twisted pair) in practice from what I've seen.

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@Rob99 I just ordered a set of Wago 2002 2201 terminal blocks for 230V connections. What looks neat on the Weidmuller ones at the Loxone shop is they appear to have an earth terminal which is connected to the DIN rail. Given the Wagos don't have this and there appears no bus bar at the top of the Future Automation cabinet, how do you handle the earths for your incoming T&E?

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1 hour ago, Hilldes said:

there appears no bus bar at the top of the Future Automation cabinet, how do you handle the earths for your incoming T&E?

All FA cabinets have busbars for earth (and neutral), so that's where I terminate the CPC (earth) of the T&E.

 

You may not see them in pictures as sometime they are fitted at the bottom but there are tapped holes for them to be fitted at the top too.

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59 minutes ago, Rob99 said:

All FA cabinets have busbars for earth (and neutral), so that's where I terminate the CPC (earth) of the T&E.

 

You may not see them in pictures as sometime they are fitted at the bottom but there are tapped holes for them to be fitted at the top too.

 

Mine has got one at the bottom, nothing at the top though and there are no tapped holes either.  This is the LXN5, so not the the deeper version which has a few more bells and whistles.  I'm using the Weidmuller T&E connectors. 

 

I've almost completed the loft panel now, which controls first floor blinds, curtains, bathroom UFH and towel rails and 5A lighting circuits.  I'm just missing some terminal blocks, as I had forgotton about termination of all the DALI lighting.  I've avoided daisy-chaining between relays/dimmers, but this does result in a lot of cable and the need for some "power distribution" terminal blocks which I've putting on the bottom rail.  (I think I'm going to need to cut the bottom rail in half, so the RHS portion can sit further back)

 

image.thumb.png.c670e79f2b6bf674fe8b1b131be569e9.png

 

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4 hours ago, Rob99 said:

All FA cabinets have busbars for earth (and neutral), so that's where I terminate the CPC (earth) of the T&E.

 

You may not see them in pictures as sometime they are fitted at the bottom but there are tapped holes for them to be fitted at the top too.

Thanks @Rob99 - I will have a look for tapped holes at the top of my LXN4 cabinet.

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2 hours ago, Dan F said:

Mine has got one at the bottom, nothing at the top though and there are no tapped holes either.  This is the LXN5, so not the the deeper version which has a few more bells and whistles.  I'm using the Weidmuller T&E connectors. 

 

I've almost completed the loft panel now, which controls first floor blinds, curtains, bathroom UFH and towel rails and 5A lighting circuits.  I'm just missing some terminal blocks, as I had forgotton about termination of all the DALI lighting.  I've avoided daisy-chaining between relays/dimmers, but this does result in a lot of cable and the need for some "power distribution" terminal blocks which I've putting on the bottom rail.  (I think I'm going to need to cut the bottom rail in half, so the RHS portion can sit further back)

Looking good @Dan F. So for an incoming T&E at the top of the cabinet, you will connect L and N to the weidmuller terminal blocks, then run the earth down to the busbar at the bottom of the cabinet?

 

What Loxone extensions have you got there (can't see the writing) is that three relay extensions and three dimmer extensions?

 

What is that terminal block in the bottom right with the brown wires - is it a Live common block?

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2 hours ago, Dan F said:

Mine has got one at the bottom, nothing at the top though and there are no tapped holes either.

Ah that's interesting. Just checked my LXN4 and it has an earth busbar at the top. It's 3 years old so maybe they have slightly changed the design with fewer options on location now.

I also have an LXN6-D which I'm building which seems to have tapped holes everywhere!!

To be fair I've never yet built a panel which doesn't require some element of adaptation.

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20 minutes ago, Hilldes said:

Looking good @Dan F. So for an incoming T&E at the top of the cabinet, you will connect L and N to the weidmuller terminal blocks, then run the earth down to the busbar at the bottom of the cabinet?

Don't need to run it anywhere as the cabinet including rails are all earthed, as long as earth on incoming supply is clamped to the busbar at the bottom of the cabinet, which it will be.

 

Quote

What Loxone extensions have you got there (can't see the writing) is that three relay extensions and three dimmer extensions?

Top 3 extensions are relays.  The lower three extensions are dimmers.

The terminals are the top (from left to right are)

 - Termination for DALI lighting  (here I'll use 2 terminal blocks per feed, one for LNE and one for DA+/DA- and then cut the cross-connectors so that they bridge terminal blocks, hit & miss.

 - 5A lighting circuits

 - 2+E for UFH/towel rails

 - 3+E for Blinds/Curtains

 

Quote

What is that terminal block in the bottom right with the brown wires - is it a Live common block?

Yes, this still need to tidy this up and I might need to modify things so they fit further back, but yes.. these will be common live blocks.  One for each RCBO i.e. UFH, lighting, blinds.  In hinsight it may have been simpler to daisy chain the live, but this was me trying to do things probably!

Edited by Dan F
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9 minutes ago, Rob99 said:

Ah that's interesting. Just checked my LXN4 and it has an earth busbar at the top. It's 3 years old so maybe they have slightly changed the design with fewer options on location now.

I also have an LXN6-D which I'm building which seems to have tapped holes everywhere!!

To be fair I've never yet built a panel which doesn't require some element of adaptation.

 

I lied, it's a LNX4 I have, not LXN5 (the LXN5 is still in the box).  But looking online it seems they are putting the extras in the deep version only.   I avoided the deep version as I thought it wasnt really necessary,  but I see the rails have 60/40 split which would have been jolly useful for the terminal blocks I'm trying to put on the bottom rail!

Edited by Dan F
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Sorry, next question on terminal blocks. The Loxone blog suggests using these Push in Fused Terminals for 24V circuits. Can't find it now but I think there was mention of using the fuse to protect LED strips - one for each RGBW? Anyone used these @Dan F, @Rob99 @joth?

 

PS thanks for the response to the question on your cabinet @Dan F - that makes sense.

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18 minutes ago, Hilldes said:

Sorry, next question on terminal blocks. The Loxone blog suggests using these Push in Fused Terminals for 24V circuits. Can't find it now but I think there was mention of using the fuse to protect LED strips - one for each RGBW? Anyone used these @Dan F, @Rob99 @joth?

 

PS thanks for the response to the question on your cabinet @Dan F - that makes sense.

 

I used a car style 8 way fused power distribution box but you can get DIN mounted versions which are probably neater. E.g. 

https://czh-labs.com/products/din-rail-mount-12-position-dc-power-fuse-distribution-strip-module

 

I think similar things are on eBay etc

 

I also put a 20A d.c. breaker on the input to the LED strips distro board so it's easy to isolate it without shutting down all 24V distro.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/RKURCK-12V-24V-Circuit-Inverter-Protection/dp/B074RK2DZB/ref=asc_df_B074RK2DZB/

 

Edited by joth
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2 hours ago, Hilldes said:

Sorry, next question on terminal blocks. The Loxone blog suggests using these Push in Fused Terminals for 24V circuits. Can't find it now but I think there was mention of using the fuse to protect LED strips - one for each RGBW? Anyone used these @Dan F, @Rob99 @joth?

 

PS thanks for the response to the question on your cabinet @Dan F - that makes sense.

I'm not using any fuses anywhere, I don't have  any 24v lighting in the cabinet either though,  it's all external with seperate supplies and drivers.

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Many thanks for the replies @joth, @Dan F, @Rob99. Next step for me is to think about how I'm going to fit everything in the (LXN4) cabinet. Here are the totals for incoming cables:

 

48 x 1mm2 T&E

6 x RGBW 1.5mm2  4 core Flex

28 x CAT6

 

Assuming the T&E terminal blocks occupy 10mm of DIN rail each, that is 480mm of DIN rail for these alone.

 

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2 hours ago, Hilldes said:

48 x 1mm2 T&E

Yes, use double/triple deck terminal blocks. I use the Wago 2002 range which are the push in type (screw terminals are a pita) and are 5.2mm wide. You can mount the DIN rail to the back of the cabinet if you need to create more depth for the terminal blocks. You can get around 100 of the Wago terminal blocks on a single LXN DIN rail.

 

2 hours ago, Hilldes said:

6 x RGBW 1.5mm2  4 core Flex

Why 4-core? For RGBW you need 5 surely. Again, use the same double or triple height terminals, in blocks of 5 to connect all cores on a single level. For example you only need 10 triple height terminals to connect all 6 RGBW.

 

2 hours ago, Hilldes said:

28 x CAT6

Wow, thats a lot of cat6! Do you need all 224 cores to connect into your cabinet, or just some of them? I would terminate cat6 outside the cabinet on a patch panel or a 110 block and then only bring into the cabinet the cores you actually need.

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13 minutes ago, Rob99 said:

Wow, thats a lot of cat6! Do you need all 224 cores to connect into your cabinet, or just some of them? I would terminate cat6 outside the cabinet on a patch panel or a 110 block and then only bring into the cabinet the cores you actually need.

 

Ha, wish I'd thought of this before building mine! Ideally get a small metal cabinet specifically for the 110 block termination, and have a row of strain relief (shielded) cable clamps to hold the CAT6 outer jackets and screen in place rather than having them float loose as I currently do.

The benefit of this is any 'bus' protocols can be distributed entirely within the  100 wiring centre e.g. Tree, 1-wire, +24V/Gnd etc. So the number of cores coming into the LXN cabinet would be vastly reduced.

 

I'm guessing 28 x CAT6 is you're running an entirely radial system? i.e. one cat6 per lightswitch / motion sensor / other device?

This is maximum flexibility but a lot of cable. What I settled on very late in our 1st fix was that having one (or possibly 2) CAT6 drop per "room" seemed the sweet spot. My preference was to wire it to the main light switch in that room, and then daisy chain from there to all the other devices.

This way the drops coming into the cabinet are very easy to label up (just the room name) and if there's any issues with any device it's very straight forward to isolate just that room and then diagnose.

 

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5 hours ago, Hilldes said:

Assuming the T&E terminal blocks occupy 10mm of DIN rail each, that is 480mm of DIN rail for these alone.

 

Most terminal blocks (apart from the 8-level ones) are just over 5mm wide each.  Wago also do the T&E terminal blocks with the earth "foot" which would address your previous question to.

 

What I did before I built anything, and before buying most terminal blocks, was to:

- Choose a terminal block manufacturer.

- Study the product range (sticking to 2.5mm push-in reducing reading time) so you understand what's available including multi-tier blocks, and those with earth incorporated.

- Design the layout using the manufacturers design-tool to make sure everything fits and then export a shopping list from the tool.

 

 

5 hours ago, Hilldes said:

how I'm going to fit everything in the (LXN4) cabinet. Here are the totals for incoming cables:

 

Assumung you can get all terinal blocks on the top row, how many Loxone extensions do you have?  Will these all fit on the two middle rails, leaving the bottom rails for PSU's and RCBO's?

 

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2 hours ago, joth said:

 

Ha, wish I'd thought of this before building mine! Ideally get a small metal cabinet specifically for the 110 block termination, and have a row of strain relief (shielded) cable clamps to hold the CAT6 outer jackets and screen in place rather than having them float loose as I currently do.

 

I like this idea, and it would save on cost of some of those 8-level blocks, I'm just keen to do as much as possible in the cabinet itself given I need the space above for lighting PSU's and drivers.  Aside from your CAT6's floating loose, have you run into any other issues with terminating into the signal marshelling blocks on the top rail?

 

As far as shielding goes, I only plan to connect the the 1-wire sheilding to DC GND, but other than this was not planning to connect any of the CAT7 shielding to anything, I don't think it's really necesary is it?

 

2 hours ago, joth said:

My preference was to wire it to the main light switch in that room, and then daisy chain from there to all the other devices.

This way the drops coming into the cabinet are very easy to label up (just the room name) and if there's any issues with any device it's very straight forward to isolate just that room and then diagnose.

 

I've done this, thanks in part to reading @joth's posts.  I have a total of around 15-18 coming into the cabinet I think and was planning to use the 8-level blocks here, one per incoming CAT7.  Rather than use seperate blocks for distributing 24V/GND/TREE+/TREE- etc. but current plan is to try to get hold of these (see below) to bridge the blocks.  Should help me to keep the termination slightly tidier and give me a bit more flexibility when it comes to switching around which CAT7 runs are connected to which tree extension (I think i need 2).

image.png.020718690e576f6d2d25e5aa6862a83a.png

 

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8 hours ago, Rob99 said:
11 hours ago, Hilldes said:

48 x 1mm2 T&E

Yes, use double/triple deck terminal blocks. I use the Wago 2002 range which are the push in type (screw terminals are a pita) and are 5.2mm wide. You can mount the DIN rail to the back of the cabinet if you need to create more depth for the terminal blocks. You can get around 100 of the Wago terminal blocks on a single LXN DIN rail.

Ah yes, just opened my package of Wago 2002-2201 and they are only about 5 to 6mm wide.

 

8 hours ago, Rob99 said:
11 hours ago, Hilldes said:

6 x RGBW 1.5mm2  4 core Flex

Why 4-core? For RGBW you need 5 surely. Again, use the same double or triple height terminals, in blocks of 5 to connect all cores on a single level. For example you only need 10 triple height terminals to connect all 6 RGBW.

Yep just after I wrote that I realised I should have said 5 core but the edit window had closed. So "double height" is like the Wago 2002-2201 and "tripple height" is a 3 pair of terminals?

 

8 hours ago, Rob99 said:
11 hours ago, Hilldes said:

28 x CAT6

Wow, thats a lot of cat6! Do you need all 224 cores to connect into your cabinet, or just some of them? I would terminate cat6 outside the cabinet on a patch panel or a 110 block and then only bring into the cabinet the cores you actually need.

Many of the pairs are not used. There are 14 Digital Inputs (just the orange/orange&white pair of CAT6) and 14 Loxone Tree (so two pairs from the CAT6 cable). Now I'm Googling "110 blocks" ?. I remember @jack describing lessons on this one, must look that up.

 

 

 

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10 hours ago, TonyT said:

Ahhhh now I see what you mean. I've got the Wago double height. Thanks @TonyT 

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