Friday, February 20, 2015

Broken Antique Brass Floor Lamp with Cluster and Mogul Socket Repaired

The mogul cluster floor lamp is kind of complicated, but highly versatile. The 3 way mogul socket is capable of  burning a 3 way mogul bulb with 100, 200, or 300 watts. The cluster with a two circuit switch can burn 3 - 60 watt bulbs (together or as a single, double). The single bulb might be nice for relaxing, double bulbs for tying shoes, triple bulbs for reading. Add the mogul socket and you can land personal aircraft or signal a vessel lost at sea. You have a lot of options.

A customer brought this patient in the other day and complained it wasn't working. Most lamps have a simple cord, switch, and socket. This floor lamp was much more complicated with a cluster, three keyless sockets, a two circuit rotary switch and mogul socket. With so many different bulbs and switches, we add some bulbs to see what is and what is not working. At this point we are not sure what lamp parts are needed for this repair.

There is no power to any of the bulbs. We need to inspect the wire and trace down where the power is failing to connect. We start by removing the bulbs and the candle covers from the keyless sockets.

Next we open the cluster of the lamp and look at the wiring in the cluster.

With the mogul socket removed we test it using a spare cord and some alligator clamps.

So we now know that with power the mogul socket works properly. We turn our attention to the two circuit switch. Using an OHM meter we test the switch.

This switch has two circuits: four possible options
1) Off
2) Circuit A (keyless sockets 1 + 2)
3) Circuit B (keyless socket 3)
4) Circuit A+B (keyless sockets 1, 2, and 3)

With the OHM meter touching the wires we rotate the switch and make sure all 4 options are working as they should. In this case they are working. We feel like there might have been a bad connection in the wire nut to the rotary switch. We will start putting the lamp back together using the same parts. Since we feel like the two circuit switch was a potential problem, we write the date we tested the switch for reference.

We group the wires from the keyless sockets together and mark them with a pen. The two circuit switch is connected to the keyless socket wires. Two sockets to the blue line and one socket to the red line. The black line on the switch connects to the lamp cord with the plug.

Next the mogul socket is wired back to the lamp. It connects directly to the lamp cord with the plug. Note: The mogul socket has a switch so we do not want it on the two circuit switch. It is never a good idea to have two single pole switches on a single circuit.

Before closing the cluster and after the wire nuts are safely in place, bulbs are added and the lamp is plugged in for testing.

Knowing all the wiring is correct and working, the cluster is closed.

This lamp is ready. Total cost $0.00 Total Time: 30 minutes.