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#67399 - 07/03/06 04:26 PM Puzzle
master66 Offline
Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 260
Loc: Masontown, PA, USA
This is an electric puzzle that was shown to one of our electricians at a supply house. I have been told that hundreds of people have tried to solve it to no avail. I have not seen this thing but our guy has explained it to me. If there are any questions I will try to get answers. I have not tried to solve it myself as of yet but I will later.

Here it is,

There are two single conductors connected to a 120V male 2-wire cord cap.

Each wire, the hot and grounded conductor, goes to a different box made of porcelain or something similar and non conductive.

There is a single conductor between the two boxes.

In each box there is a toggle switch and a porcelain light socket with an incandescant lamp.

The toggle switch controls the lamp in the opposite box regardless of the position of the switch in the box with the controlled lamp.

The switch is a mini toggle switch. Don't know if it is SPST, SPDT or DPDT.

Our guy swears it works as described.

Good luck? Let me know what you come up with.


Edited female cord cap to male cord cap.

[This message has been edited by master66 (edited 07-04-2006).]
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#67400 - 07/03/06 05:21 PM Re: Puzzle
NJwirenut Offline
Registered: 09/15/01
Posts: 816
Loc: Bergen County, NJ
Do the bulbs light to normal brilliance?

I suspect they are running on half-wave rectified power, and there are some diodes involved somehow.
#67401 - 07/03/06 05:49 PM Re: Puzzle
master66 Offline
Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 260
Loc: Masontown, PA, USA
Not sure but I will find out.
#67402 - 07/03/06 06:33 PM Re: Puzzle
SteveFehr Offline
Registered: 03/19/05
Posts: 1192
Loc: Chesapeake, VA
Edit: no, thought I had it, but I didn't.

[This message has been edited by SteveFehr (edited 07-03-2006).]
#67403 - 07/03/06 06:44 PM Re: Puzzle
John Crighton Offline
Registered: 05/16/05
Posts: 172
Loc: Southern California
NJwirenut's got it right.

The switches are SPST. There are two diodes in each box. The lamps glow at half-brightness due to half-wave rectification.

Here's the real question:

How do you get power to a setup like this that has a female cord cap?
#67404 - 07/03/06 07:54 PM Re: Puzzle
Theelectrikid Offline
Registered: 04/30/04
Posts: 854
Loc: Levittown, PA
Here's the real question:

How do you get power to a setup like this that has a female cord cap?

Easy. I just need two el-cheapo extension cords, some of 'em wire stripper things, and some duct tape.

Ian A.

[This message has been edited by Theelectrikid (edited 07-03-2006).]
Is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
#67405 - 07/03/06 10:53 PM Re: Puzzle
JoeTestingEngr Offline
Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 786
Loc: Chicago, Il.
I added a couple caps and sent dxfs to Scott & Master66. Did you want dimmers with those? I was stuck at work on Emergency Standby until the fireworks were finished. I knew the answer immediately, just not my ECN password for the work computer.
#67406 - 07/05/06 10:37 PM Re: Puzzle
Scott35 Offline

Broom Pusher and
Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 2724
Loc: Anaheim, CA. USA
Hello everyone!

The Schematic has been uploaded and posted to the Technical Reference section.

It can be found under the topic:

Lamp Puzzle!!!

Clicking the Hyperlink above will open that page.

Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!
#67407 - 07/06/06 04:50 AM Re: Puzzle
pauluk Offline
Registered: 08/11/01
Posts: 7693
Loc: Norfolk, England
Similar circuits for signaling have appeared in electronics journals for years.

Another variant is to have a multi-way switch in one box signal four different states to lights in the remote box by feeding rectified positive, rectified negative, or straight A.C. down the line. The receiving end then shows lamp A, lamp B, both lamps, or none.
#67408 - 07/06/06 06:51 PM Re: Puzzle
master66 Offline
Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 260
Loc: Masontown, PA, USA
According to the information that I am getting, JoeTestingEngr was correct.

This "puzzle" was presented to one of our guys by Sam Scott of Scott Electric Supply near greensburg PA. Found out today that one of our other guys suggested to Mr. Scott a while ago and was correct also.

Thanks for the input.

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