Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 30

Thread: SPT cable fire

  1. #1
    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    3,531
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    174
    Mentioned
    36
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    73

    Default SPT cable fire

    I had an SPT cable to catch fire last night. It was in the yard and zero damage was done other than the cable and extension cord. It burned a six inch radius around the cable until the GFCI tripped. The breaker did not trip nor did the fuses open on the controller. Furthermore, the triac on the output shorted and provided the connection with all the current it could use. The fire most likely started at the end of the SPT cable inside of the SPT connector. I guess the cause was water (condensation or rain) inside the connector or a spurious wire from improperly cutting the cable during assembly. My first thought was to blame the SPT connector as I had many of them fail this year. Yes they were NoveltyLights.com connectors. The connectors I bought this year from NoveltyLights.com were different than the connectors in the past. The insulation displacement pins (vampire pins) tended to bend over during assembly and the body of the connectors would sometimes split. But in this case, I don't feel the connector itself was the problem.

    Please note that the overcurrent protection devices did not trip as this was not a dead short but a higher impedance connection. Meaning that it would burn as long as it wanted had the GFCI not intervened. The GFCI tripped as the connection was intermittent (plasma style arcing as I saw it happen) and GFCIs don't like intermittent current flow.

    Had this connection been on my roof it might have caught my roof on fire. BUT, many of you guys have heard me say that electrical connections should be elevated off the ground by hanging or by using a brick. That is one reason why. During the years of my former profession, I examined many electrical products that failed some causing death and destruction. So, I feel I am educated and experienced enough to draw conclusions.


    Edit: I unfairly said the connectors were CDI. The connectors were from NoveltyLights.com. Sorry Paul.
    Last edited by Al in Raleigh; 12-25-2010 at 03:40 PM.
    Al

  2. #2
    Trying to behave here-NOT John's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Posts
    1,940
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    24
    Mentioned
    1
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    0

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Quote Originally Posted by Al in Raleigh View Post
    .<snip>
    My first thought was to blame the SPT connector as I had many of them fail this year. Yes they were CDI connectors. The connectors I bought this year from CDI were different than the connectors in the past. The insulation displacement pins (vampire pins) tended to bend over during assembly and the body of the connectors would sometimes split. <snip>
    .
    Was this on SPT1 or SPT2 wire?
    John (The Mascot)
    www.tennholidays.com

    480 LOR Channels + 2 CCR + 8 Mighty Minis + 10 Rainbow Floods+ 1 vdrive and vflood, Lynx Express and over 40,000 LEDs

  3. #3
    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    3,531
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    174
    Mentioned
    36
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    73

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    SPT2
    Al

  4. #4
    Trying to behave here-NOT John's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Posts
    1,940
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    24
    Mentioned
    1
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    0

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Quote Originally Posted by Al in Raleigh View Post
    SPT2
    Well no wonder. CDI connectors are rated for SPT1 or the special "SPT3" wire. Not SPT2.

    Perhaps you might have meant the connectors from the Novelty Lights bulk buy?


    EDIT: Ok, I see you edited your post to Novelty instead of CDI. Then ignore my comments.
    John (The Mascot)
    www.tennholidays.com

    480 LOR Channels + 2 CCR + 8 Mighty Minis + 10 Rainbow Floods+ 1 vdrive and vflood, Lynx Express and over 40,000 LEDs

  5. #5
    Registered User rescue_653's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Winston-Salem
    Posts
    325
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    13
    Mentioned
    0
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    1

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    I had several of the plugs bend over this year as we were making our connections did not know it till I would go and test them and then realize that I didnt have any power to the plug. I am glad there were no damages!

  6. #6
    Official Lurker Wirekat's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    East Hill Kent, WA
    Posts
    3
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    0
    Mentioned
    0
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    0

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    I have plugs from both CDI and Novelity. I have bent pins on both types before.
    I remember I used to just lay the wire in and slide the cover but learned later I learned
    that I had to actually put the end of the wire into the hole of the plug and then bend the wire across the plug and slide the cover. I guess it provides a bit of strain relief and keeps the wire from moving while sliding the cover on. Of course when I modified the (female) plugs to do a passthrough type of plug I had to be bit more careful and actually test the plugs before deploying. CDI and Novelty plugs do use different plastic and I've found that with the CDI plugs I have to use pliers to slide the covers because my fingers are wasted by this time of year.

  7. #7
    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    3,531
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    174
    Mentioned
    36
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    73

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    I had zero of CDI connectors to fail. I installed several hundred of CDI and Novelty connectors in the yard this year. The only problem I had was the connectors we bought from Novelty. The CDI plugs have a through wire cutout that makes it much easier and better in my opinion.
    Al

  8. #8
    Havin fun ! kidcole's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Clayton, NC
    Posts
    3,966
    Thanks (Received)
    44
    Likes (Received)
    233
    Blog Entries
    2
    Mentioned
    76
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    399

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    I agree Al. I had several of the Novelty group buy connector pins bend on me. Per Wirecat's comments, I have always placed the wire in the strain relief hole in the end and then bent the wire over the pins. You are also supposed to "split" the wire just before you push it in. There is a tiny divider in the bottom of the hole that keeps the bare wires safe from each other.

    But in playing with the CDI and the Novelty, I have noticed I can bend the Novelty pins with my finger much easier than the CDI. I "borrowed" a bag of the Novelty SPT-2s from Scott Mc a few weeks ago. It's a sad fact that many suppliers are cost reducing to the point of being unsafe .. I guess when we see a deal that's too good to be true .. we need to walk away ...
    Last edited by kidcole; 12-25-2010 at 08:18 PM. Reason: typos
    Thanks,

    Denny Cole
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/Cole...ristmasLights/

    Back to Work <unretired> so I went Static in 2017. Planning xLights when I retire <again>. Maybe 2019 ?

    Falcon - 3 F16V3 & 1 PiCap, Sandevices - 2 E681 & 4 E6804, 288 Channels Lynx Express, 108 Channels DC DMX,
    10' Pixel MegaTree, CoroFlakes w/Pixel Modules, Pixel RBLs, 2 Pixel Matrix 16x25, 10" RGB Ornaments, 7x230 Pixel Icicle Matrix,
    Classic 20' AC Megatree, TIR Destiny RGB Spots, RGB Blowmolds, Wireframes, and Inflatables with External Light Control

  9. #9
    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    3,531
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    174
    Mentioned
    36
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    73

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    I made my connectors per the instruction sheets. The connectors still failed. I was super careful on a cable that I made a week ago and had 2 bad connectors. It wasn't me that was at fault, it was the connectors.

    But, as I said before, the fire I had was caused by water or a small wire that didn't get fully cut from the SPT wire.
    Al

  10. #10
    Newbie Extraordinaire... scottmcl's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Cary, NC
    Posts
    1,140
    Thanks (Received)
    5
    Likes (Received)
    61
    Blog Entries
    6
    Mentioned
    46
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    118

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Al,

    Was the group buy earlier this year from Novelty or CDI?
    - Scott M.
    ______________________________
    Newbie extraordinaire...
    LOR user with 108 channels.
    Carpenter Lights: Website; Twitter feed; Facebook page

  11. #11
    wbottomley
    Visitor wbottomley's Avatar

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Quote Originally Posted by Al in Raleigh View Post
    I made my connectors per the instruction sheets.
    Sounds like you read the Spanish version. Make sure you flip to the back of the book for English. lol.

  12. #12
    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    3,531
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    174
    Mentioned
    36
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    73

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Novelty Scott.
    Al

  13. #13
    This space for rent. Al in Raleigh's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    3,531
    Thanks (Received)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    174
    Mentioned
    36
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    73

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Wiiliam,
    Yo podría haber leído el español instrucciones
    Al
    Al

  14. #14
    wbottomley
    Visitor wbottomley's Avatar

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    Quote Originally Posted by Al in Raleigh View Post
    Wiiliam,
    Yo podría haber leído el español instrucciones
    Al

    "I could have read the instructions Spanish"

    LOL.

  15. #15
    Registered User Don Williams's Avatar
    Status
    Offline
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Wendell , NC
    Posts
    157
    Thanks (Received)
    1
    Likes (Received)
    19
    Mentioned
    17
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quoted
    13

    Default Re: SPT cable fire

    This darn snow storm zipped me !! Been with out power since Sunday at 7:00 am . Been running on generator till about a hour ago. When generator was on I found out that the cable was out. Now at 2:00 in the morning I am back to normal.

    My opinion on vampire plugs: DON'T use them !! I had this problem several years ago to do this. Just buy a $.97 drop cord, cut,solder, shrink wrap, and then tape and you will never have a problem. Sure it is more time consuming , but you will not have a problem.

    By the way we pick up 11" of snow here !

    Don

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •