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[APD] Re: Problem with MH light

Ok the transformer and capacitor look good.  I removed the ceramic socket
from the pendant.  Man, this thing is heavy duty!  When I removed the socket
by pulling it down and pushing the cable into the top of the pendant, a
whole bunch of charred pieces of plastic fell out of the pendant. The wire
nut connectors to the socket were charred.  The wires obviously shorted out
after the twist connectors disintegrated.

The mogul sockets are usually rated to 1500 watts and 600 volts. Very beefy :-)

This pendant is five years old.  It must be extremely hot at the top of the
socket.  The two short pigtail wires from the socket are fabric covered,
probably some high temperature ceramic fiber.  However, the wires from the
cable don't look anything special.  Their insulation is gone, just turned to
powder.  I wonder if I need some special hi-temp wire nuts or the normal
kind will be OK.   In either event I should probably rewire these every
couple of years since the insulation on the cable is bound to deteriorate

The wire on the socket should be silicone insulated with fiberglass braid over that. It will be rated to 125°C or 150°C depending on the exact type. The connecting cable should be 105°C rated cable or more if you can find it. I have had good luck with Coleman Cable's Seoprene cable which holds up well and is very flexible. For wirenuts there are some high-temp kinds available but they're difficult to find. Your best bet is probably to use the Nylon crimp-on connectors that look like wirenuts that can be found rated to 105°C and can be purchased at Home Depot in a small package.

You can make the wire last a *lot* longer by wiring the fixture so that
(1) the wire is not directly above the socket/bulb
(2) the are around the socket is open/ventilated to allow for convection cooling


Waveform Technology
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