Should this have tripped the breaker?

Wiring up new wallights in the early hours the other night and managed to wire the earth on the wall light into the live feed and the " live " cable on the wallight into earth !.. I do sort of have an excuse as it was about 1.00 am, i was knackered and do feel a complete arse!
the first light worked fine and the live feed to the 2nd light (where i made the mixup) is taken from the chokblock at the connection behind the 1st light.
I thought this would have tripped the circuit breaker at the unit when i flicked on the switch ?
Any pointers...Honest..I do normally know what I'm doing!
Cheers
Ged
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On 18 Feb 2004 05:25:15 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hudson.com (Ged) wrote:

didn't, you just got them the wrong way round. An MCB can't tell what colour wires you've connected it to, it's not that clever. ..
SJW A.C.S. Ltd.
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it won't worry an MCB protected circuit at all if all the current lighting your lamp is flowing down the earth lead.
--
Chris Green

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earth wire is going nowhere - you've made the outer casing of the second light live, but there's nowhere much for the electricity to flow. Brickwork has a pretty high resistance, and the nearest metallic route back to the installation earth would be through the red-insulated wire, which is just connected to one terminal of the lamp. Now, if you *touch* that outer casing, you'll find out how much lower your body+shoes+floorboards etc. resistance is than the brickwork/plasterboard (not sure if your wall lights are inside a room or outdoor 'security' lights): but even then the current, whilst painful and just-possibly fatal (much more so if outside, barefooted, etc. than indoors, carpeted etc), will be much too small to trip a 6A lighting breaker.
If you'd had a earth-leakage breaker in the circuit, it might have tripped as a result of the earth-to-neutral connection through the lamp in the miswired fitting (provides alternative path for neutral current so triggering the current-imbalance detector), or when touching the metalwork you'd made live. But (as often pointed out in this group) the 'can't see where I'm going in the dark' risk of putting indoor lighting circuits on an earth-leakage breaker exceeds the electrocution risk.

your connections before restoring power, and maybe not to do safety-critical work in the wee small hours ;-) Never run with scissors, always cut so the blade goes *away* from you, measure-twice-cut-once, make sure you have clean underwear in case you're run over by a bus, don't carry hot drinks up the stairs (only one of these pieces of advice comes from an employer's helf-n-safetee brigade: can you guess which one?)
HTH - Stefek
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Why?
Clearly not.
Christian.
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to the circuit ??????
--
Steve


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