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What are terminal strip/bus best practices?

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  • Member since
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What are terminal strip/bus best practices?
Posted by BigCityFreight on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 9:20 PM

I have purchased a terminal strip (or maybe it's a terminal bus, but certainly not a bus terminal!) with jumpers. I think there are 10 slots on each side. There is a jumper strip that can connect all 10 spaces on each side. There is a screw with two small metal plates on each slot. 

I was wondering if there is a best practice for where the fork connector jumper should go in relation to the wire that's being connected to that slot. For instance, should the jumper fork go between the plates or between the plate and the screw head? Does it matter?

I'm thinking the main power bus would go to the first space. It looks like it might be easier to use the prongs on the jumpers under the screw and atop the first plate with the small wires from my lights running between the plates, but maybe it would be better to wind them around the screw on top?

Any advice here?

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Posted by richg1998 on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 9:46 PM

 

A photo of what you have a brand and part number. There are many varieties of this item.

 

Rich

 

N

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Posted by 7j43k on Wednesday, January 03, 2018 11:46 PM

BigCityFreight

I have purchased a terminal strip (or maybe it's a terminal bus, but certainly not a bus terminal!) with jumpers. I think there are 10 slots on each side. There is a jumper strip that can connect all 10 spaces on each side. There is a screw with two small metal plates on each slot. 

I was wondering if there is a best practice for where the fork connector jumper should go in relation to the wire that's being connected to that slot. For instance, should the jumper fork go between the plates or between the plate and the screw head? Does it matter?

I'm thinking the main power bus would go to the first space. It looks like it might be easier to use the prongs on the jumpers under the screw and atop the first plate with the small wires from my lights running between the plates, but maybe it would be better to wind them around the screw on top?

Any advice here?

 

 

I suspect you are talking about a "barrier strip".  That's the "official" name.

It's black.  There are barrier's.  There's  repeating-two-screws-connected-by-a-metal-strip.

Usually, the jumpers are loose-you add them as necessary.  They aren't always necessary.

You have a choice of wrapping wires around the screw head, or crimping little thingy's onto the wire and placing them under the screw head.

It's REAL EASY.  All you're doing is setting up connections.  Doesn't really matter where you place the wires.

I am a big fan of "crimp on connections", in this useage.  You don't HAVE to.

Your use of the term "fork connector" is interesting.  It's either easy or not.  BUT.  A bit of conversating, here, will clear it up.

 

Ed

 

 

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Posted by gmpullman on Thursday, January 04, 2018 3:19 AM

7j43k
Your use of the term "fork connector" is interesting.  It's either easy or not.

That's what I've always called them...

 stakon_1 by Edmund, on Flickr

I could be wrong...

Ed

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Posted by gregc on Thursday, January 04, 2018 4:54 AM

BigCityFreight
I was wondering if there is a best practice for where the fork connector jumper should go in relation to the wire that's being connected to that slot. For instance, should the jumper fork go between the plates or between the plate and the screw head? Does it matter?

you can use them anyway you want.  One common purpose is to provide multiple connections to the same electrical source.   For this case it's common to connect all the terminals on one side of the strip together and use the terminals on the opposite side to distribute

Terminal block jumpers make it easy

separate barrier strips can be used for each polarity, for example when distributing power

but i've used a single barrier strip for both polarities by bridging each half with jumpers.   This keeps each wire of a pair closer to one another.

Ive also adding wired connections on top of the terminal jumpers to maximize use of the strip.

greg - Philadelphia & Reading / Reading

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Posted by rrinker on Thursday, January 04, 2018 7:07 AM

 Personally, I prefer rings to forks - yes, you have to take the screw completely out to put one on the terminal, but if the screw loosens, the wire can't fall off and flap around in the breeze and maybe short to some other wire.

 When there are the extra plates, I usually place one wire between the two - the OP is referring to square washers that are sometimes on terminal strips. If there is an additional wire, I'll put one between the base and first washer, the next between the two washers, and the third if there is one between the top washer and screw head. If it all fits - with multiple wires and using spade or ring terminals, the screw may not be long enough to handle multiple wires plus the washers.

                                     --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by BigCityFreight on Thursday, January 04, 2018 7:49 AM

This is what I have:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/5Pcs-Dual-Row-12-Positions-600V-15A-Barrier-Screw-Connector-Terminal-Strip-Block/372024706689?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

Is each side independent of the other -- can I run a power connection to say the top left and then connect one wire from the lights to each screw and connect them all with the jumper -- then do the same thing with the other wire on the other side?

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Posted by 7j43k on Thursday, January 04, 2018 12:01 PM

A "barrier strip" has a barrier between each pair of screws.  Those paired screws are connected electrically, usually by a metal base plate under the screws.  

You MIGHT have something that does NOT connect the paired screws electrically--like no baseplate, as described above.  I've seen barrier strips like in the pictures, and the ones I've handled all DO have that baseplate.

So, the sides are either "cross connected" or not.  They probably are.

If you have little square washers that are sort of loose under the screwhead, you normally wouldn't use a lug (like a crimp-on forked connector).  You would just stick the wire(s) under the square washer and tighten the screw.  You don't need lugs on each wire end, then.  

I don't have the critter you bought in hand, and can't really then examine it.  But.  If you want to use the jumper-looking thingy that looks like it came with your barrier strip, I'd try to place the fork NOT in the same "slot" as a loose wire.  If possible.

If you have a barrier strip without the square washers (the kind pictured above in Greg's post), you really should use crimp-on lugs.  Installed with the proper crimper.

I'm not convinced that that strip of lugs is all electrically connected.  Probably is, though.  If it is, I expect you can cut the strip at a convenient location, and jump adjoining paired screws together.  You should only have to do that on one side.

 

If you have a volt-ohm meter, you can double check things.  You can see if the paired screws really are connected to each other, and you can see whether that strip of lugs really does have an internal connection.  It can't hurt.

 

Ed

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Posted by 7j43k on Thursday, January 04, 2018 12:03 PM

BigCityFreight

This is what I have:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/5Pcs-Dual-Row-12-Positions-600V-15A-Barrier-Screw-Connector-Terminal-Strip-Block/372024706689?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

Is each side independent of the other -- can I run a power connection to say the top left and then connect one wire from the lights to each screw and connect them all with the jumper -- then do the same thing with the other wire on the other side?

 

 

As far as I know, each side is NOT independent.  See my comments above.

Ed

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Posted by rrinker on Thursday, January 04, 2018 12:26 PM

 Hard to tell in those pictures, but it would be unusual if they weren't like any other barrier strip - the two screws across from one another are connected together, and each pair is isolated from the neighboring pairs. 

                         --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by jjdamnit on Thursday, January 04, 2018 12:41 PM

Hello all,

I also know them as spade connectors.

These are available in different sizes, according to wire gage.

The larger spade connectors for 10-12 AWG wire might be too wide to fit in the spaces of the terminal strip.

While the smaller spade connectors for 20-22 AWG might be too narrow to fit around the screws in the terminal strip.

There are also "narrow block" spade connectors with thinner blades to fit into the spaces of the terminal strip.

Take a look at these options: https://www.delcity.net/store/Vinyl!Insulated-Spade-Terminals/p_805379

Hope this helps.

"Uhh...I didn’t know it was 'impossible' I just made it work...sorry"

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