Author Topic: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits  (Read 6694 times)

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Alex

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Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« on: September 18, 2011, 04:11:57 pm »
Hi guys, I am working on a gallery exhibit in the UK that will most likely use neon and incandescent lamps. It will ideally be powered from mains.

I was wondering if you are aware of any special requirements for temporary gallery exhibits that are connected to mains.

Any pointers are much appreciated.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2011, 04:22:52 pm by Alex »
 

Offline vk6zgo

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2011, 04:37:59 pm »
I would expect the gallery owners to give you a list of requirements that you have to adhere to.
After all,they pay the insurance for the place,& must have come across similar situations before.

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Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2011, 07:42:30 pm »
Well I think its best to have your own mini power panel, with automatic fuses.
And lots rolls of mains extension cables.  :)
 

Offline Mechatrommer

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2011, 08:16:17 pm »
simply, you didnt mention critical criteria such as floorplan area or number of visitors at one time (occupant capacity?). it could be just a 10'x10' room, kidding or maybe i'm looking it from different perspective :P
Nature: Evolution and the Illusion of Randomness (Stephen L. Talbott): Its now indisputable that... organisms “expertise” contextualizes its genome, and its nonsense to say that these powers are under the control of the genome being contextualized - Barbara McClintock
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2011, 09:17:36 pm »
I have had involvement in many installations from small spaces to a national  monument.
Gallery installations are by their very nature unusual, and often involve aspects that are outside the scope or experience of routine procedures and those who implement them.
Every place will have their own rules, which can be based on any or all of experience, common sense or extreme Health & Safety paranoia and a 'No' mentality.
 
Here's what I've learnt :
 
1) Theory vs. practice : You may be given lists of requirements ranging from zero to ridiculous, requests for method statements, risk assessments, PAT labels, yadayadayada, but when it comes to actually setting up, everybody is so busy getting everything done on time that they are either too busy to look at anything in any detail, or don't care.
I have NEVER EVER had anyone check on any safety aspect of an installation, regardless of the level of preceding paperwork, most of which is simply ass-covering for them. In some cases I've had to tell them that their equipment/facilities are unsafe or unsuitable.

2) Don't ask/Don't tell -  If you are doing anything 'unusual', don't volunteer any info that they don't ask for - it will only confuse them and give them a reason to say 'no'. Do however make sure you clearly state in writing (and get acknowledgement) anything they need to do, for both safety and functionality - provision of power, barriers, supervision, staff  training, lighting, signage etc.

3) The people on the ground doing construction etc. are typically way more helpful than management.

4) Take spares of EVERYTHING, and tools to swap or repair any part of your stuff. And lots of cable ties and gaffer tape. Know in advance the locations of the nearest RS/Screwfix/B&Q or whatever. And make sure the budget has some contingency provision for last-minute unexpected requirements.

Bottom line - as long you are competent, and happy that what you are doing is safe for the environment* there is unlikely to be any problem, but make sure you look like you know what you're doing, and have good answers ready for any questions that may arise. 
A pack of PAT test labels from ebay is a good investment.

* Note that you may not become fully aware of all details of the environment until you get there to install. A site visit beforehand is invaluable for spotting potential problems. At the very least insist on photos of the space.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2011, 09:28:51 pm by mikeselectricstuff »
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Offline Mechatrommer

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2011, 09:38:43 pm »
during my young, i saw the our "bylaw book", its barely touching any heavy technical stuffs. the book only tells general stuffs, like safety issues, how much watts per square feet, rule of thumb stuffs. more likely you will work with other disciplines (aircond, firefighter, deco, architect nerds etc) as mike said, it can easily get messy, if you dont have enough experience, and its not 1+1 you learnt in school. the "bylaw book" in your country maybe different. and be prepared... mentally, the 1+1 you learnt in school may not get you answer the other people asking you, esp old folks. but keep in mind, a simple rule such as V=IR may is all you need in your backpack or as your "common sense". the other deeper technical stuffs can only add more juice in your system/design if time permits. 2cents.
Nature: Evolution and the Illusion of Randomness (Stephen L. Talbott): Its now indisputable that... organisms “expertise” contextualizes its genome, and its nonsense to say that these powers are under the control of the genome being contextualized - Barbara McClintock
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2011, 09:54:23 pm »
LED lighting is probably the best option as it's cooler and more efficient than halogen, although it does have the disadvantage of a poorer colouring rendering index.

Aside from that, it shouldn't matter what the voltage is, as long as there's enough power available. If it's 12VAC and you need 230VAC, just use a mains transformer in reverse, if it's 24VDC just buy an inverter, you get the idea.
 

Offline IanB

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2011, 10:57:56 pm »
incandescent lamps
Naughty, naughty. You do know these are illegal now, don't you? Before long, possession of a prohibited light source will have you thrown in jail  ;D
 

Offline mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2011, 11:13:50 pm »
incandescent lamps
Naughty, naughty. You do know these are illegal now, don't you? Before long, possession of a prohibited light source will have you thrown in jail  ;D
It's not a lamp, it's a heater
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Alex

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2011, 12:17:45 am »
Thanks for all the replies!

I would expect the gallery owners to give you a list of requirements that you have to adhere to.
After all,they pay the insurance for the place,& must have come across similar situations before.
VK6ZGO
Sure, just defining the scope of the project atm. I would not be surprised if they just took my advice blindly, being a (from the few candidates) gallery with art sculptures...

Well I think its best to have your own mini power panel, with automatic fuses.
And lots rolls of mains extension cables.  :)

And a Fluke DMM is a must.

Gallery installations are by their very nature unusual [...]

Thanks for the insight Mike; the sort of thing I was looking for.

LED lighting is probably the best option[...]

It's a retro 'Las Vegas' type of exchibit, so the technology of the time must be used!

incandescent lamps
Naughty, naughty. You do know these are illegal now, don't you? Before long, possession of a prohibited light source will have you thrown in jail  ;D

'Legalise indandescent lamps' campaign? Another one lined up for MOSI, 'tungsten by the meter'!

« Last Edit: September 19, 2011, 12:19:45 am by Alex »
 

Offline Mechatrommer

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Re: Electrical requirements for gallery exhibits
« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2011, 03:03:43 am »
I would not be surprised if they just took my advice blindly, being a (from the few candidates) gallery with art sculptures...
I would not be surprised if you have to take their advice blindly, being a gallery with art sculptures...
Nature: Evolution and the Illusion of Randomness (Stephen L. Talbott): Its now indisputable that... organisms “expertise” contextualizes its genome, and its nonsense to say that these powers are under the control of the genome being contextualized - Barbara McClintock
 


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