I would like three way dimming control of some bedroom lights, ie. a 2G2W
dimmer by the door and another on each side of the bed. I know I could do
this with normal switches ie, two 2G2W switches and an intermediate, but is
it possible with dimmers?
No, at least not using normal wall dimmers. You can only have one dimmer
on a circuit. However what you could do is have one "2 way" dimmer and
two switches. The 2 way dimmer has a "push-on push-off" knob which
operates a changeover switch, you then wire it up as if it was a normal
The other way to do it would be to use a dimmer module with a low
voltage control, and fit 3 controls to it, or use X10 modules.
Not really, but first you need to define what you want the three
dimmers to be able to do. E.g. if the dimmer by the door is at
maximum and the dimmer by the bed is at minimum and the third dimmer
is at some other setting how bright should the light be? If you can
come up with a sensible set of requirements for what the three dimmers
should be able to do then it *may* be possible to come up with a
I suspect that the most practical solution may be a single dimmer with
remote controls but I think that's quite an expensive answer.
| I would like three way dimming control of some bedroom lights, ie.
| a 2G2W dimmer by the door and another on each side of the bed.
| I know I could do this with normal switches ie, two 2G2W switches
| and an intermediate, but is it possible with dimmers?
Not normally. I have seen some electronic dimmers of the touch-pad variety
which could have about 12 units daisy-chained to do this. Keep looking.
How about something like these:-
These work great. You'd need a master unit by the door, and dasiy chain two
slaves for the bedside switches. Following my earlier posting about
dimmers, these are the only brand I could get to work properly. Oh, and the
TLC prices are the best I managed to find.
"Obviously" it's not possible to have three 'normal' dimmers each giving
control of the same load: if they're in parallel the one producing the
highest output voltage 'wins', in series any one would be capable of
turning the whole circuit right off. If you're happy enough with one
point at which there's variable control and two additional points at
which the selected level can be let through or cut off, then replacing
one of the 2W switches with a 2W dimmer will do the trick. 2W dimmers
aren't all that exotic, though the cheapies tend to be 1W only.
If you do want full up/down control from multiple locations, there are
dimmer units which will do this: they have a single "do the dimming"
unit which you mount somewhere convenient, and then accept 'brighter/dimmer'
control signals from multiple remote locations. (I seem to recall there are
infra-red and radio-frequency remotes available for some brands, too, to
save you doing Real Wiring (tm) for the control points). Needless to say,
though, such 'commercial premises' dimmers are pricier and need a visit
to a Gen-You-Ine electrical trade counter/specialist.
You might strike lucky and find a remote-controllable 2W dimmer too: then
you could have the other two switching locations to give off-or-as-dimmed
control, while both the fitting and the remote (which you won't of course
lose ;-) control the actual light level.
Oh, and there's the X10 'home automation' range of stuff you could look
HTH - Stefek
I thank the honourable gentleman for his intervention, and note the
very reasonable prices at which these items are priced - under ten pounds
of our sovereign currency for the master and less than seven for the
slave units. Truly, this Government's pursuit of prudence in economic
policy and social justice for all has resulted in a paradise on this
 Unless the Home Secretary judges them to be terrorist suspects; in which
case we'll try them in secret, with court-appointed defence lawyers who
are sworn not to tell them what they're charged with, and on a 'balance of
probabilities' burden of proof rather than 'beyond reasonable doubt'. But
it's OK, we'll only ever use such procedures against people we *know*
are undesirable. Oh, and smartarse Usenet posters.
Stefek Zaba wrote
| Truly, this Government's pursuit of prudence in economic policy
| and social justice for all has resulted in a paradise on this
|  Unless the Home Secretary judges them to be terrorist suspects;
| in which case we'll try them in secret, with court-appointed defence
| lawyers who are sworn not to tell them what they're charged with,
| and on a 'balance of probabilities' burden of proof rather than
| 'beyond reasonable doubt'. But it's OK, we'll only ever use such
| procedures against people we *know* are undesirable. Oh, and
| smartarse Usenet posters.
And soon to be added to the list, DIYers who install their own wiring
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