Running cables to control boxes

Discussion in 'Computers, Cabling & Other Miscellaneous Hardware' started by mangoat, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. mangoat

    mangoat Full Time Elf

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    hey guys

    just wondering about running cables (network and 240v power) together over a distance of say 10m.

    this would be power feed to my control box and the network cable as well.

    is this a good idea or to much risk of problems. power cable i am running will be just 3 core flex (like an extension lead).

    cheers
    goat
     
  2. AAH

    AAH I love blinky lights :) Community Project Designer

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    No issue at all running these 2 cables together over this distance. If it's LOR or DMX network you can probably run 100s of metres close together. 240V wiring is low current and the signal is typically pretty clean. It's when you get to DC cables and pixel networks where things get a lot more critical. Some of the DC cabling may have as many as 30A flowing through it and there is square wave currents which are awesome if you want crosstalk.
     
  3. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    Personally i always design against this scenario especially with the way we use our lights with fluctauting loads

    Try to keep the network cable and the 240V ac seperated because running for a length of 10 metres parralled to eachother can cause some induced voltages in your network cable and may cause you some issues.

    Always keep data and low voltage DC wires away form any 110v or 240v especially runs that are parrallel and close to eachother has always been the safest way
     
  4. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

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    So when you say separated, how far apart do they need to be to prevent induced voltages.
     
  5. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    This would vary depending on the load and distance of the cable, but for me i use a general rule of a minimal 30cm apart
     
  6. multicast

    multicast Senior Elf Generous Elf

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    Code is 600mm between data and power if its running parallel. If you have to cross do it at 90 degrees.
     
  7. battle79

    battle79 Full Time Elf

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    As per our bible (AS3000) it states 50mm separation between LV (240V) & ELV (<50V) cabling for cable runs, and 100mm separation for terminations.

    Reality is a run of 10mtr shouldn't be a problem. I've seem conduit runs of 80mtrs with a 240V and a Ethernet that happily work. Mind you I cringed when I saw it and would never sign off on a cable run that way.

    600mm is separation for HV cables from memory.

    Unfortunately none of our controllers allow for the 100mm between connections of different voltages, and therefore would not get approved for commercial sale. Some get around it with physical barriers (albeit very small ones) that reduces separation required to almost zero.

    I still find myself uncomfortable with only the tiny bit of plastic between the 240V terminal and the 5V/12V/24V terminals on the PSU we use. One loose cable could spoil a lot of hard work if not fused properly.

    Anyway, just my 2cents worth.

    Ramble over,
    Rowan
     
  8. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

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    Thanks Rowan. I did wonder why it was okay to have the connectors so close together on the controller if separation was required on the cabling. Answer is, it's not really up to specifications as you mentioned but it works.
     
  9. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    I find its more about just following a general rule that will give a good outcome every time, there are always many ways we can do things in this hobby that may work most times but are considered bad practice and running a 240v cable next to a low voltage cable or a data cable like ethernet or data for our pixels is just running a higher risk of having issues and considered bad practice because it may work in many situations but not all situations.
     
  10. BundyRoy

    BundyRoy Senior Elf

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    I'm assuming there are no issues with running low voltage (12V) power injection wires along side data cables as they have a common ground wire anyway. Probably a dumb question but if I don't ask I will will always be wondering.
     
  11. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    Not an issue in fact most of us will use 4 core cable which has the DC power and the pixel data in the same cable.

    DC volts are not a big an issue as what AC is
     
  12. multicast

    multicast Senior Elf Generous Elf

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    Code says 600mm between Cat5UTP and Mains, if they are running parallel. If you need to cross them, do it at 90 degrees.


    Reality is that you can get away with a lot especially with 100M ethernet, its remarkably robust.
     
  13. battle79

    battle79 Full Time Elf

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    Ah, 600mm for LV mains. Grey matters getting a little rusty.

    Regards,
    Rowan
     
  14. scamper

    scamper Senior Elf

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    In reality, you shouldn't see any ill effects running mains next to data so long as the data is strong.
    The problem of the mains is that it is AC and can induce an EMF into conductors close to it, however unless you have coils of wire that amplify the EMF you will get next to nothing.
    You will tend to get more interference from switches or motors causing spikes in cheaper less filtered power supplies than adjacent AC lines.
     
  15. fasteddy

    fasteddy I have C.L.A.P Global Moderator Generous Elf

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    The issue lies with the fact with how we use our power, we do not have a constant loads on our 240v but instead fluctuating loads depending on our sequencing, so for me i always promote seperation.
     

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