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OT: How to connect CBus switches?
#1
Hi there, (Sorry for being non-cqc related here, but there are some cbus experts floating around here.)
How did you all connect the CBus switches together? I have 30 Saturn wired switches all coming back to node-zero. I have lots of rack space and was thinking of getting a 36-port patch panel and wiring the 30 incoming cbus switches internally in the patch panel in a star config. I'm sure there must be other ways of doing this. Much appreciated.
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#2
While the C-bus network is topology independent, typically the switches are daisy chained as this reduces the amount of cable required. Sometimes you will have a few stubs off the daisy chain.

This does not help you though as you are already wired up in a star topology.

I would get a patch panel, terminate all the cables with RJ45 plugs and plug them into the patch panel. On the back of the patch panel you will need to loop a wire from pin 1 of all sockets together and so forth for all 8 pins.

There is no actual C-Bus hub out there for this kind of thing as most daisy chain.

You also need to allow for all the relays and dimmers and any other C-Bus device to connect to the network as well, but that is the beauty of C-Bus.

If say, you want to add a 360 deg PIR, you just pull a cable from the closest switch and connect it to the PIR and thats it, no long cable run back to node zero. Run up toolkit and scan the network for the new device.

Hope this helps

Mick
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#3
Hi Mick, That's helpful and I appreciate the advice on daisy chaining for future additions. I'm starting to understand the strengths of CBus and learning more as I go.
Using the patch panel should make for a clean installation. If, for example, I use a 36 port patch panel, I'd have 35 ports incoming (switches) wired together at the back to one port (outgoing) going that goes to the dimmer packs, which are daisy chained by default with the pink cable.
It's going to be a bit of a hairball at the back of the patchpanel but the front will be nice and neat.

Thanks again.
Enda
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#4
Just be careful with your wiring.

Doing it the way you are, introduces lots of extra connection points and dodgy wiring is the biggest killer of a C-Bus system.

I would reconsider using a patch panel as you are never going to disconnect them (unless you are looking for a fault in the wiring) so I would use screw terminal blocks of some sort.

Cheers

Rohan
HAMFIELD
Software & Hardware Solutions
Makers of the Translink C-Bus Gateway
for the Apple iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.
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#5
The problem is finding a neat screw block that will do the job and allow all to be connected. Do you know of one? 36 pairs into one screw terminal is very messy and difficult to achieve.

As for the patch panel, the best way I have found is to remove (disable) the cutoff bit of the punch down tool and use one length of cable looping from plug to plug. It means only one connection in each terminal as opposed to two. It can be done neatly before you install the panel.

Mick
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#6
Hi there!

Long time no hear, that is exactly what I done, effectively making a hub for cbus from a blank patch board. The one trick is to just connect a few switches at a time initially in case of a short etc to make the troubleshooting simpler. I went all in on initial connection and the bus did not start correct as there was 1 dodgy switch.

-d
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#7
Hi Damian, Yes, long time no hear. These projects have a way of dragging on.

Did you run one continuous wire from port to port at the back like Mick suggested? It seems like a delicate operation, i.e. one accidental tug at the back of the patch panel and all switches die. Do you feel as if your setup is sturdy?

Cheers
Enda
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#8
rhamer Wrote:I would reconsider using a patch panel as you are never going to disconnect them (unless you are looking for a fault in the wiring) so I would use screw terminal blocks of some sort.
Hi Rohan, I see what you're saying and it makes sense. I just don't know much about terminal blocks and wouldn't know how to make the installation as clean and tidy as I would with the patch panel method.
Cheers
Enda
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