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Author Topic: HELP needed wiring a SPST lighted toggle switch as an "arming switch"  (Read 852 times)
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artbykenb
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« on: August 12, 2014, 09:12:22 PM »

I'm TRYING to build an "arming switch" using what is supposed to be a SPST Illuminated toggle switch, female and male deans connectors. (Guess who doesn't have enough to do?) Besides,  some of those Deans connectors seem to want to be permanently connected.

The switch has 3 "lugs"; GROUND, ACC and POWER. The resistance is 38 (+-) ohms between ground & acc and ground & power when the switch is in one side. Flipping the switch to the opposite side the resistance is 1 (+-) ohm between ground & acc and "open" between ground & power.

Obviously, I'm not very electrical minded so please bear with me. I have the common wire (BLACK) straight across to the deans negative connection.  When I solder the battery positive (RED) to the Ground switch lug  and the output (RED) soldered to the ESC deans plug. Result: the switch LED is ON and the ESC/RCVR is OFF.

When I solder the battery positive (RED) to the ACC switch lug  and the output (RED) soldered to the ESC deans plug. Result: the switch LED is OFF and the ESC/RCVR is ON.

Doing a continuity check, Ground and ACC appear "connected" (shorted?). The Power lug is null or shorted depending upon the switch being "off" or "on".  The switch has no label for on/off.  Huh

I'm attaching images of the switch(es) and simple (minded) schematics of what I've tried to explain in the blah blah blah above.  I sure would appreciate some wiring help so that the LED lights up when my Rcvr is on.

I sure do appreciate your interest if you got this far. LOL  Grin
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HELP needed wiring a SPST lighted toggle switch as an "arming switch"
HELP needed wiring a SPST lighted toggle switch as an "arming switch"
HELP needed wiring a SPST lighted toggle switch as an "arming switch"
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Ken Barclay
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slipstick
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« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2014, 04:05:50 AM »

You can't just leave one of the terminals open. Correct wiring for a normal illuminated SPST toggle switch is Battery + connects to Power,  Rx input connects to ACC (which is switched power out) and Battery - connects to ground (and to both Deans -ve pins).

Steve
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artbykenb
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« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2014, 04:37:08 AM »

Steve, thank you for your reply. I'll see if I can implement your suggestion and will let you know.

KenB
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Ken Barclay
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« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2014, 07:43:15 AM »

Using a toggle switch as an "arming" switch is not always as neat as it sounds.  What are you planning to arm?  Most (if not nearly ALL) toggle switches that are small enough for model use simply don't have the capacity (Amps) that can be generated by current motor systems.  They also act as a very efficient choke to the whole system.

It MIGHT be OK with one of the 2 or 5 gram outrunners on one or two small LiPo's (<6 Amps), but you's still lose efficiency.  Better to use a jumper between the battery and ESC that is accessible from the outside of the model.

The "difficulty" getting DEANS plugs apart (I surmise the "T" plugs?) is the reason that they work so well.  They are a real PITA to get apart, but I have seen a variation (prolly a Chicopy) that has molded ridges on the sides of the "housing" so that they are not so slippery.
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artbykenb
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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2014, 09:10:09 AM »

The toggles I'm (trying) using are "rated" (you never really [know) at 12vdc @ 20-30 amps. The switches aren't small, but neither are my planes which have wingspans of 40 - 50 inches. My kind of flying is easy-going with not much flat-out boring holes in the sky. Although one day I did have to giddyap to get away from an attack sparrow, but that's another story.  I think that these switches will handle the amps that my planes pull.  I TRY to buy bona fide Deans but that's not what I always get. I live about 200 miles from my LHS so almost everything is internet.  Examples of my LHS are Heads UP, Grayson, Diamond and etc.   I try to not get "chicopies" but isn't just about everything RC made in the People's Republic lately? Cheesy
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Ken Barclay
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« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2014, 02:38:36 PM »

If the resistance is really an ohm, at 20 amps your switch will be dissipating 400 watts and costing 20 volts! I suspect the resistance is in your voltmeter leads, or a calibration problem. If not, toss out the switch!

Suggest you weigh the switch and compare it to the weight of the model.
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slipstick
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« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2014, 05:14:23 PM »

If you don't mind the weight of the switch it will be fine. Switch ratings are the current that it's safe to actually switch....the amount of current that you can pass through a closed switch is always higher. So unless you're going to be switching off a motor at full throttle it's not a problem.

I don't use them simply because I don't like adding any extra component that COULD fail on me at a critical moment Wink.

Steve
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artbykenb
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« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2014, 05:21:42 PM »

I took one of the switches apart and found that the LED is connected from ACC to GROUND - effectively connecting the two. When the switch is turned OFF (Power circuit is open), ACC and Ground are connected. When the switch is turned ON (Power circuit is closed) ACC and Ground are still connected. The switches that I bought are apparently designed for use a chassis ground (e.g. in a car) while I'm looking for an on/off switch that glows in the dark and has no chassis ground.   Smiley

Many of you guys seem to be interested in how much things weigh. I didn't know that weight had much to do with wiring a switch. But anyway gents, here she goes: the airplane weighs 1,740 grams. One single toggle switch weighs 9+ grams.  A store-bought arming plug (Maxx #6970) weighs 20 grams and costs $12 - $13 each. My home-grown arming switch weighs 20 grams. The switch itself cost around $4, a pair of (male + female) Deans Ultra Connector costs $3 at Tower Hobbies. So, I'm not adding significant (if any) weight and the cost of my home-grown thing is roughly $7. Almost half the cost and it started out being fun. Gotta be more careful what I ask for!

I need to study more about SPST lighted toggle switches, for sure. I do appreciate that you guys offered up some advice but with these switches my project will be put aside for a while.
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Ken Barclay
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« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2014, 07:56:39 PM »

Not sure that you really do have to study more, as long as that resistance turns out to be in the voltmeter leads and not in the switch, and if the current when the motor is going isn't all that much more than 20 amps. You might have to spend a few minutes fiddling with things. It might be easier and safer, until you know what's going on, to use a 12V low power light bulb for a load instead of the ESC, BEC, motor etc. I don't think you should put this off, because you can probably get it right in just a few minutes.

It's all a bit confusing but I'm sure if I had the switch and a VOM in my hands I could figure it out in about 30 seconds.

As far as getting the LED to work, I think you need to have a connection to the negative wire, or there's no place for the LED's current to go. What happens if you put the negative wire from the battery to the "gnd" terminal and the positive wire to the "+" terminal, with the ESC, motor etc. to the "ACC" terminal? I've attached a very lousy diagram which I think shows what I mean.

If all else fails, you could always connect the LED (or your own LED and resistor) from the ESC power lead to ground, so that any time things are turned on, the LED is lit.

People who don't use switches seem to think that they're eliminating a point of failure. I've had the wires to at least one connector break from all the handling when plugging and unplugging. Doesn't happen with a switch, except if you're changing the battery. I think the point of a cutoff switch is to use it a lot so that you're safer, not just when putting a freshly charged battery in. I currently have a model I bought all wired up. It turns on and off by plugging and unplugging a connector. (A high current Dean's, which is total overkill for a circuit that only powers a receiver and 6 servos.) I've already managed to loosen the strain relief on one side.


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Re: HELP needed wiring a SPST lighted toggle switch as an "arming switch"
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slipstick
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« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2014, 04:13:34 AM »

As far as getting the LED to work, I think you need to have a connection to the negative wire, or there's no place for the LED's current to go. What happens if you put the negative wire from the battery to the "gnd" terminal and the positive wire to the "+" terminal, with the ESC, motor etc. to the "ACC" terminal? I've attached a very lousy diagram which I think shows what I mean.
That's what I said way back in post #2. It will work perfectly.

Basically all we have is an SPST switch which switches the Power and ACC terminals. Ground is there purely to give the LED current a path so it needs to be connected to battery negative (which gives you the equivalent of a "chassis ground").

Steve
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artbykenb
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« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2014, 03:40:11 PM »

Howdy Messers slipstick & lincoln! 

Mr Lincoln (how's your head lately?) I had wired a switch ala your schematic before I publicly whined in this forum. Blew a battery. The problem is (I believe) that the LED is a direct short between the "hot" wire and ground.

I'll send each of you one of these @#$% switches and you can show me how. PM me with your mailing address & i'll send you a switch that you can frame and put on the wall when you've had success.

In the meantime, I'll be looking for a proper switch, toggle or otherwise.  I don't like having to open a hatch in order to disconnect the battery connection.

KenB His majesty, the Whiner (or wiener?).

PS I took the blown battery apart & fixed it.
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Ken Barclay
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lincoln
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« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2014, 05:29:17 PM »

Will do. Probably a good idea to use a fuse next time! If you don't have one handy, one fine strand of wire would work, but I'm not sure just how fine. I'm guessing the LED won't carry enough current to blow anything but, possibly, the LED.

As far as my head goes, I don't remember the event. It WAS a while back.

Unless it's defective, I'm sure you can make this switch work.
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artbykenb
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« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2014, 08:44:07 PM »

Hi Mr Lincoln.

I made the @#$%^ work. The answer was in front of me all the while! After reading, rereading your post, then thinking it came to me. Just short of an epiphany.  I forgot that the LED is a diode. DUH. SO, the dummy connects the positive battery to the POWER lug, the load connected to the ACC lug then the GROUND connected to the DEANS negative "pins". Badda bing, badda boom.

I'm not stupid, just ignorant.

THANK YOU!
KenB

PS I had an epiphany back in SEA in the 60s and I'm still recovering!   Grin
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Ken Barclay
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slipstick
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« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2014, 04:20:19 AM »

So a bit like :
Correct wiring for a normal illuminated SPST toggle switch is Battery + connects to Power,  Rx input connects to ACC (which is switched power out) and Battery - connects to ground (and to both Deans -ve pins).
Congratulations Smiley.

It's never easy to do stuff from just diagrams and the written word. I'm pretty sure either of us could have SHOWED you how to do it in 30 seconds or less Wink.

Steve
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artbykenb
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« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2014, 06:55:36 AM »

POLARITY in electronics means something. DUHHH?.

As I said, it means very much to me that you and Mr Lincoln stayed with me. Thank you both.

KenB

PS, I'm not as stupid as you might think. I do work very hard to remove any doubt, though.
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Ken Barclay
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slipstick
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« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2014, 07:17:45 AM »

We're here to help Smiley.

I've mellowed a lot as I get older so rather than thinking that people who can't do stuff that I find really easy are stupid I just assume they're going to be able to help me later on with something that I'm no good at...and let's face it that's a long list Wink.

Steve
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lincoln
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« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2014, 06:24:30 PM »

I'm glad to help, and I don't look down on anyone. It wouldn't be fair. A large fraction of my building time, short as it is, I spend wondering where I just put down that tool. Sometimes it's still in my hand. I'm fairly certain there are many chimpanzees who don't have that problem, so maybe that means they're smarter?
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