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September 5, 2017

Prepared by: Tim Miller, TMAudio


Analysis of [Name Removed] Fixture Mounting

HISTORY
Due to extensive problems plaguing [Name Removed] Lighting system since installation in
summer of 2015, all of the building control wiring to the fixtures was replaced in November
2016. These splices take place at the top of the fixture. At this point, each splice should connect
to the wiring harness, which runs through the pendant pipe directly down to the fixture circuit
board.

All of the fixtures (attached at the bottom of the pendant pipe) were replaced by [Name
Removed] technicians and authorized service professionals in February 2017. This work
replaced only the actual fixture at the bottom of the pipe. It was not necessary to remove the
entire mounting structure to perform this. It was also much less time-consuming to do the work
without re-mounting everything.

So at this point, all wiring at the top of the pendant pipe was replaced and all fixtures at the
bottom of the pipe were replaced. The only equipment remaining from the original installation
was the middle section:
The electrical junction box, to which the pipe is mounted;
[Name Removed] supplied pipe mounting hardware:
- Yoke bracket attaches to junction box
- threaded ball joint hangs from the yoke bracket and secures with set screw, threads to
top of pipe with lock nut
- pipe threaded at top and bottom
- bracket on fixture threads to bottom of the pipe with lock nut
electrical AC connections within the junction box, work performed by the original electricians;
the [Name Removed] supplied wiring harness that runs through the pipe, which attaches to
the building wiring (top of pipe) and fixture (bottom of pipe).

ISSUE
Not long after the fixture overhaul in February, a [Name Removed] Electrician was replacing
fixture #375, which was performing erratically. He noted a few issues of concern: the lock-nut
was loose, the pendant pipe was only hanging on by a few threads, and there was a DMX wiring
splice hidden within the junction box (picture of splices below).

These findings prompted a need to analyze the middle portion of these fixtures (mounting
application & wiring harness) which had not been inspected since the original installation.
OBJECTIVE
Quality check middle section of all [Name Removed] fixtures.

Work to be performed:
Check tightness of locknuts at upper and lower end of pendant pipes. Tighten if necessary.
Check tightness and orientation of set-screw (at top of fixture inside junction box). Turn to
correct orientation and tighten set-screw if necessary.
Look for wiring pigtails within the junction box (like one found in #375 which prompted this
analysis).
Set every fixture to Hold last look setting.

Additionally, there were cobwebs cleaned from many of the fixtures.

Locknuts
Correctly applied at top of
pipe (pictured left) and
bottom (pictured right).

ANALYSIS
Mounting
Roughly half of the fixtures had lock-nuts that could be tightened without much effort.
A few of the locknuts were completely loose.
Most all of the set screws were loose and many of the ball joints were not oriented within the
yoke correctly (turned).
Various fixtures are missing locknuts altogether. This could potentially allow the pipe to
come unthreaded and pose a falling hazard.
There are several fixtures that use a very short pipe (not [Name Removed] supplied pipe).
These are above the stage. These have no locknuts.
Several fixtures that either run along the main truss, or next to the projection walls cause
concern with how the junction box is mounted to the joist. These have 2 toggle bolts on the
joist, holding a short section of struct, which booms out to support the fixtures.

Wiring
All of the fixtures were powering on correctly, so I did not have reason to believe the
electrical wiring had any issue. At every fixture I looked for anything abnormal.
Fixture #306 has an electrical ground wire that is not connected.
Fixture #368 has MC wiring exposed outside of the junction box.
Fixture #335 has a coil of DMX wiring at the top, which could mean that the wiring harness
was not long enough and had to be spliced.
Various fixtures have the wiring harness coming out of the junction box with no bushing.
#314

Missing lower lock nut

#320

Missing lower lock nut


Missing upper lock nut

#304, 305, 310, 316, 317, 323

No locknuts on upper or lower threads


(Over the stage/steps)
#307, 313, 320, 326
#309, 311, 322, 324, 334, 336, 345, 347, 356, 358, 367, 369, 375, 377
Mounting application is concerning
#306

No bushing for Cat5 knockout


Ground wire not connected

#335

Coil of excess cable above fixture


(Possible splice in pendant?)

#368

Exposed wiring
WORK PERFORMED
When present, locknuts were tightened.
Threaded ball joints were oriented correctly in the yoke bracket channel, and set screws
tightened.
All fixtures set to Hold Last Look.
Cobwebs cleaned.

WORK REMAINING
No additional locknuts have been added.
Fixtures mounted with strut and toggle bolts have not been addressed.
No wiring work has been done.

CONCLUSION
Having tightened the lock-nuts that were present, I feel much better about the structural status
of most of the fixtures. Those loose connections were leaving room for potential future hazards.

I would highly recommend [Name Removed] address the remaining work:


Reinforcing the toggle bolt mounts.
Adding lock-nuts where they are absent, especially to the fixtures over the stage (which are
using non-[Name Removed] pipe). One fixture over the center-stage seemed like it was not
hanging on by very many threads at, and I attempted to re-tighten. Without lock-nuts it has
the potential to loosen. Adding these will require rewiring AC and DMX connections by a
qualified electrician. (Stoner)
Have an electrician connect the ground wire on #306
Have an electrician assess the exposed wiring on #368
I do not see any issue with the extra coil of wiring on #335. I would only inspect further if
this fixture starts acting up.