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Round wiring with Terminal Strips vs plug-in Power Strip


mygrommi
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I am finishing a roombox this weekend and I wired it using a Cirkit terminal strip. This was my first time using a terminal strip.

I use round wire instead of tape wire on all my projects, but have up til now always used Houseworks plug-in power strip.

My next project after this roombox is to return to the renovation of my adult daughter's very large childhood dollhouse. I originally used Houseworks power strips in the dollhouse, but have always had trouble keeping some of the plugs securely in the power strip. Some of the plugs don't stay plugged in very well and work loose so that Yiu are constantly needing to re-plug them. I know you can gently use needle nose pliers to carefully separate the brass prongs on a light fixture plug to try to keep them plugged in, but my experience is that eventually, they become loose again and tend to jar loose.

During renovation, I removed all the original wiring from the dollhouse since I added rooms onto the house and re-configured it, so I am totally re-wiring it. I had planned to use power strips again, but after using a terminal strip in the roombox, I am considering using terminal strips in the dollhouse.

The dollhouse will have a lot of light fixtures and since it is so large, it requires 4 transformers. The thing I am questioning is that using terminal strips is a little messy since you separate each two-stranded light fixture wire and attach one strand of the wire to a screw on one section of the terminal strip and the other strand of the wire to a screw on the opposite end of the terminal strip. With so many lights and with separating the two-stranded wire, you end up with quite a tangle of wires at the terminal strip as opposed to using the power strip with the plugs on the end of each wire. The power strip is much neater.

I am hiding two of the power strips or terminals (whichever I decide to use) behind stairs on two floors of the house (making the stair wall removable for access to the power strip or terminal), another behind a false wall in the attic and another in the space underneath the house.

Has anyone used terminal strips in a dollhouse with lots of lights? You can put as many light fixture wires under a terminal screw as will fit under the screw. The wires are secure in the terminal strip as opposed to the plugs in a power strip and that is why using the terminal strips is appealing to me.

I would like opinions on this if anyone has used the terminal strip method. It was so easy in the roombox which has 6 lights. The roombox is a gift and I did not want the recipient to have to constantly be plugging in the plugs into a power strip when they come loose.

Hope all this makes sense as I try to paint a picture with words. If anyone has used the terminal strip in a dollhouse I would like to know how you manage all the wires at the terminal strip.

Thanks.

Renea

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Cirkit Concepts sells the terminal strips, but I haven't seen many doll house miniaturists mention using them. Once the wires are connected under the screws, there is no reason to have to be fiddling with them.

I'm really leaning that way , but I always spend a lot of planning time in my head before committing to a project like this.

Thanks.

Renea

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Hi Renea,

For our dollhouse project, I ended up using some terminal strips I had laying around the garage. I was looking at saving some money so that's the route I went.

I spliced each wire to some colored communication wire (telephone wire) so I would be able to color-code everything. I numbered each terminal assigned the colored wires to them and then wrote up a legend or guide which is tucked into a slot on the bottom of the house. I probably over-engineered this process, but it's what made sense to me at the time.

http://i1146.photobucket.com/albums/o528/mobrien66/IMAG1561_zps983461a5.jpg

The entire circuit holds about 15 lights with one transformer and a few wires are doubled up on the terminals. One way to ensure the terminal screws stay put is to put a blob of hot glue on each terminal. You can just knock off the blob should you need to access the terminal to make a repair.

http://i1146.photobucket.com/albums/o528/mobrien66/IMAG1562_zps9c7e939b.jpg

I'll admit, though, the power strips might have been the way to go for ease of install, but the terminal strips seemed a more permanent solution.

I certainly don't want to muddy the waters any further for you.

Good luck ...... Matt

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MOBrien - I'm building the painted lady as well and now that it is mostly together I have been wishing that I routed some channels in the walls before I assumbled it to run round wire through. How did you hide your wiring? Did you wire before assembly? My plan was to go with tape wire, but I'm a little nervouse about succesfully getting the eyelets firmly into the MDF. I've enjoyed working with the MDF as a whole, but wood seems a lot easier when it comes to wiring.

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Liam, can you run the wires along the baseboards (some have a channel cut into the back for just this purpose) or the cove moldings or vertically in the corners? You may need to lengthen some wires, but that's not hard to do.

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Tracy, although I wish I could take a day to meet at Miniature Designs, right now it's just not realistic - just wishful thinking, I guess.

I did what you suggested and called Ken at Miniature Designs and he gave me some good information to think about for my particular wiring design. He was so nice to answer my questions and he was a great help.

I'm feeling so good - I have actually finished a project - a roombox - another gift. So many of my projects go unfinished for lack of time, but somehow when I'm making a gift and have a deadline I manage to get it done.

Can't post photos of this roombox just yet but will in a few weeks.

Renea

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