Dimmer switch wiring - reality check

I've just installed a fancy new 4-gang all-singing all dancing dimmer switch.
The wiring diagram for this is at http://tinyurl.com/qdeo7e4 (or http://www.varilight.co.uk/leaflets/V-Pro%20Eclique%20Dimmer% 20Instructions%20819.pdf) and it shows the switch wired 'L' to the terminal marked 'live' and 'N' to the one marked 'load'; and shows the light bulb on the 'N' side.
Now - I'm a bit confused here... the neutrals in my switch cables are sheathed at both end with brown sleeving, specifically to denote that both wires are actually live, surely? Does it actually matter which goes where? I'm putting the bedroom floor back down this afternoon (which is where the wiring box is for the lights!) so would appreciate knowing whether I need to rejig things...
--
David

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Lobster wrote:

It shows the permanent live coming into the dimmer switch (could be from the rose or from a junction box), the load (switched live) going out to one side of the bulb and the neutral going to the other side of the bulb.
The topology of the actual wires may vary.

not neutrals, just because they're blue

the brown sleeving is to indicate they're lives.

yes

I suppose it's normal for the actual brown to be the permanent live to the switch and the blue sleeved in brown to be the switched live (load), but it's probably allowed to be the other way round at the risk of confusing someone in future.
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On 06/12/2014 11:39, Lobster wrote:

Correct. Normally there are no neutral wires at a switch, only live and switched live (or "load" if you prefer)
See:
http://wiki.diyfaq.org.uk/index.php?title=House_Wiring_for_Beginners#Loop-in_Wiring

Yes. You want the permanent live connected to the L on the switch, and the switched live connected to the load connection.

Lets hope you were a bit slow off the mark ;-)
--
Cheers,

John.
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Looks normal here. With a neutral only shown at the bulb, ie load. There is no neutral on a switch pair - only a wire with the same colour, hence the sleeve to show it's not actually a neutral.
--
*Pentium wise, pen and paper foolish *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Ah, got it - makes sense.

Indeed I was... I very quickly sorted the wiring - ie, swapped over a couple of wires - which would have been a total bitch to have had to do once floorboards/carpet/double bed were back in place!! Many thanks.
--
David

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On Sat, 06 Dec 2014 11:39:34 GMT, Lobster

Your confusion seems to be on account you've not realised that the circle with a cross is the symbol for the lamp itself. The brown sleeved blue wire connects the live side of the lamp to the switch whilst the other lamp connection goes to the 3 way neutral terminal in the ceiling rose.
If the terminal marked "S-Link" remains unconnected to anything, you might be able to get away with reversing the Live and Load terminals but I'd recommend against trying this 'experiment'.
The normal practice with lighting wiring is to daisy chain the lighting circuit cabling from the CU to each ceiling lamp rose fitting in turn with a switch drop cable for each fitting being wired from the ceiling rose to that room's light switch.
If more than one ceiling rose is installed per room and intended to be switched from the one switch, the additional ceiling roses only need to have the lamp connections wired in parallel back to the one connected to the switch drop cable. Controlling a lamp or lamps from more than one switch is an extra complication that I'll refrain from going into right now.
A purpose made switch drop cable would, ideally have its own colour coded wires (perhaps a blue with brown tracer colour, banded or stripe(s) to indicate the switched live and brown for the permanent live from the ceiling rose terminals along with a safety earth conductor to facilitate earth bonding of any metal finish switch plates). However, it is normal practice to simply use the normal FT&E cable for such switch drops and fit a brown sleeve over both ends of the blue insulated conductor to indicate that it is a switched live as opposed to being a permanently connected neutral.
Alternative wiring arrangements may be used involving additional junction boxes. This is typically done with more complex lamp wiring arrangements usually involving multiple ceiling roses or even additional wall lights but the circuit remains topologically the same even if it seems physically more convoluted.
In short, connect the brown(red) to the LIVE terminal and the brown sleeved blue(red sleeved black) to the LOAD terminal. The green/yellow sleeved bare copper earth wire is usually connected to an earth terminal (even if it's just a brass terminal post in a plastic back box).
Most likely there will be a total of four switch drop cables going into the switch plate backbox so you will need to wire each dimmer switch to its appropriate switch drop cable.
This doesn't preclude the possibility of there being a smaller number of cables in use eg flat triple & earth and flat twin & earth cables, a total of five wires, using only one of the wires as common live this leaves the remaining 4 wires to act as switched lives routed to the appropriate light fittings via additional joint boxes in the ceiling space.
As long as you connect the brown wire to the LIVE switch terminal and the brown sleeved blue wire to the LOAD switch terminal, everything should be fine.
--
J B Good

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