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Anyone use micro-dimmers with momentary pushbuttons?


jtara92101

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Not really a UDI question, just figured this would be a good place to ask advice on Insteon micro-dimmers. I currently have one that I use in a walk-in closet that had a glass globe lamp (banned in closets now by building code!) with pull-cord. I installed an LED flat-panel lamp and put an Insteon remote on the wall just outside of the closet. Looks and feels totally built-in, no more hazardous glass, lamp out of the way, and now has a switch instead of a pull cord.

 

I have another proposed use now... I live in a historic property built in 1927. (It was the tallest building in San Diego from the time it was built until 1964. It is 15 stories - San Diego wasn't much of a high-rise city until very recently!)

 

I put a brushed-copper faux finish on my kitchen backsplash (looks pretty convincing) and decided to give a bit of a nod to the building history with cast brass outlet plates. I choose brown outlets so that the colors all go together, and, as well, historically would have been bakelite anyway. (But of course not Decora style GFIs and USB outlets, so a bit of a Steampunk effect...

 

Here's what I picked FWIW. The design is maybe 40 years or so older than the building, but from pictures I have seen they were going for a baroque Italian Renaissance revival look anyway...

 

http://www.houseofantiquehardware.com/electrical-faceplates-victorian-gfi-abh

 

I have them, and they are really stunning in person!

 

This looks so good that I got another idea... I can't use these throughout, as I have Insteon everywhere, and I doubt that the brown Insteon keypad button backlights work very well in brown... Plus, not going to pop for $20/switch/outlet for plates! So, for the bulk it is white outlets/switches and white Lutron screwless covers.

 

But I'm thinking of one more nod to history in the bathrooms. Actually, just one, as the other has the switch on the outside of the bathroom, and it's the bathrooms that have the most "olde fashioned" features (old white octagonal floor tile, etc.)

 

I was thinking of using a pushbutton switch, as you can get reproductions of the old pushbutton wall switches in various forms. (My grandparents had these!) I was thinking I could use the sense wire(s) to at least turn lights on and off to a preset, but it turns out that it's possible to even dim if you use a momentary pushbutton or pushbuttons. And, lo and behold, I did a search, and you CAN get the pushbutton switches in dual momentary form!

 

There is a discrepancy, though, between the description in the Insteon manual and the diagrams there. The diagram for dual momentary shows a single switch momentarily connecting the two sense lines. But the text reads as if it would be two momentary switches, and one can be used for on/brighten while the other is used for off/dim.

 

I would need to install the micro-dimmer in the switch box for this to work.

 

I might also be able to kill two birds. The bathroom has two lamps - one over the lavatory mirror, and one overhead. The overhead "doesn't work". Unclear to me what that means, as I haven't tried to get it to work myself. But I'm thinking if there is good power at the canopy, then I could install a second micro-dimmer there, and control it remotely.

 

Has anybody used micro-dimmers in this fashion, but two momentary pushbuttons on the sense lines?

 

I would use this:

 

http://www.kyleswitchplates.com/antique-style-low-voltage-dual-momentary-push-button-switches/

 

with this:

 

http://www.houseofantiquehardware.com/electrical-faceplates-victorian-single-push-button-abh?sc=9&category=128

 

There is an ambiguity in the description of the switch, though. It says it "sends a 12V pulse". That doesn't make much sense! I will need to query the seller further or get ahold of product literature. I just need two momentary-contact switches. (They also come with two independent toggles for controlling two A/C circuits.)

 

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You are correct. The Micro Dimmer requires a dual-monetary switch to achieve manual dimming. But I'd inquire about the 12-volt pulse before buying the switch. BTW, you lengthy description was just that, lengthy B)

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