Lamp Build

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New User
This is a question from a grossly uninformed person just trying to build a hobby piece, so forgive my lack of knowledge and be ready to answer a really simple question (I hope). I'm trying to build a lamp. I'm using a weird-shaped bottle as a light manipulator and as a decorative base for the lamp. I have a halogen bulb and socket assembly, a dimmer switch, and a plug. When I first got the lamp socket, I connected to the plug wire and plugged it in to make sure it works. Everything was good there. I then received the dimmer switch, which (according to the documentation of both the lamp socket and the switch) should be compatible with the type of light I'm working on, but unfortunately, the wires coming off of it were both black. I did some research, and I found some websites suggesting that if there's writing on one of the two wires, that should be the neutral wire. I hooked that up to the neutral on the lamp and the plug, and when I plugged it in, I got a spark and a pop. It didn't ruin the lamp or the bulb, but now I'm paranoid about re-attaching the switch. Should I just switch the wires I'm attaching at the switch, or is there another problem? I attached the switch at the same junction I attached the lamp and plug wire. Should I separate the three items somehow, like put a length of wire in between one of them and the others in some way? I had some images to simplify, but this forum won't let me insert a google drive image, so sorry.

Little Bill

Staff member
Tennessee NEC:2017
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