Connections Made Easy with DIN Rail Terminal Blocks

It's often the small details that cost you the greatest amount of (usually unplanned) time. When building a control system a lot of time will be spent in wiring. When you are done with your effort you want to look at your work with pride. Unfortunately it's far too easy to end up with a rat's nest when building an advanced control system with many components.

The use of DIN Rails in your control system can help immensely with organization. Orienting your various components in two or more rows allows you to create channels for wiring between the rows. Space along the outer edges of the panel can be left to connect wires between rows. Careful planning will allow you to organize your components in a way that separates low-voltage signal wires from high voltage supplies. DIN Rail Terminal Blocks can not only help with organization but they can also reduce the time needed for wiring.

One of the most time consuming and organizationally challenging parts of building a control system is power distribution. For example, you may plan to have a single 15A 120V circuit feed your DC power supply, an AC transformer and a couple pumps. A few DIN rail terminal blocks jumpered together will accomplish this goal.

Do you need to connect just two wires together but don't want to route your one of the leads to the top of the block? You can use a pair of terminal blocks jumpered together to keep both wires on the same side of the rail. Better yet use a two-level terminal block to do the same thing in half the space.

What about DC power distribution? A 20A terminal block is not limited to using 12AWG wire. The 20A terminal block supports 24AWG-12AWG wires. When using smaller gauge wire you can connect multiple wires in a single screw terminal. Each screw terminal on a 20A terminal block will support four 24-22AWG, three 20AWG, two 18-16AWG or one 14-12AWG stranded wires. With a set of three red and a set of three black blocks you can support five 18AWG and twelve 24AWG (positive and negative) connections all in about 1.2" of DIN rail space.

When ordering terminal blocks remember that one side is exposed. You can stack terminal blocks next to each other to cover the exposed side but you'll need an end cover for the last terminal block in the stack. Also, the profile of 20A and 30A single-level blocks are the same so you can mix these two styles in the same stack. Double-level blocks have a different profile so you'll want to include an end cover when transitioning a stack from single-level blocks into double-level. Terminal Block Products:
Posted 8 February, 2013 by mattreba at 8:46
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