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Old 18th Apr 2019, 12:45 am   #1
MrBungle
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Default Decent socket blocks?

I've just had a cheap one pack in on me. I've lost the right three sockets.

I currently have 12 sockets under the bench. They are two 6-way blocks each on the end of a 5m lead. I calculated I can get away with 10 sockets without too much difficulty. Max power being pulled across both is about 300W at any time so not a lot.

Does anyone know of a brand that doesn't sell rubbish? I can only find slightly dodgy ones or ones with very short leads on the Internet.

I did consider buying some timber offcut and sticking 5 back boxes on it and putting some MK switched sockets on that then running a 13A feed to it from the socket. At least if one of the sockets packs in then I can nip off to screwfix and sort it. Any wisdom appreciated.
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 1:12 am   #2
evingar
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

I hit the same problem a while back. You can still get "professional" ones at an arm and leg and an array of cheapo type you mentioned but decent mid range ones seem to have become rare. I eventually bought some RS Pro ones. I know that RS Pro stuff is a lottery, but we got some in at work and they seemed solid enough. - You have to stick your own lead and plug on .

https://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/trail...ution/6963629/

So far so good - only time will tell , I guess !
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 1:21 am   #3
MrBungle
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

That looks identical to the one packed in!

Currently looking at brennenstuhl ones, particularly this one which CPC seem to sell: https://www.brennenstuhl.com/en-AE/p...y-with-plug-gb
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 2:08 am   #4
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

Hello. I wouldn't get any of the brennenstuhl sockets. They have a very weak grip on the pins meaning the plugs fall out easily.
Far better to make your own as you said. I've got boards I made back in the 70's using real sockets and they are still going strong.
The other alternative is to search for used extension leads such as this one :https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Extension...kAAOSwFIRbo9FD
Should last ages. The olson ones are great value when second hand too. Here's one of those :https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/OLSON-DIS...frcectupt=true
Just found another good one here : https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Long-PDU-...EAAOSwGDNcZTCO
The great thing about these is they use a proper socket.
David.

Last edited by teetoon; 18th Apr 2019 at 2:34 am.
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 6:40 am   #5
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

I'd recommend the Olson ones. I've been using them for decades - used ones which were being chucked out during production line reconfigurations.

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Old 18th Apr 2019, 8:31 am   #6
Craig Sawyers
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

I haven't bought one in ages. All of mine are pretty ancient, and built like battleships.

But if I was buying a new one, my go-to company is Canford https://www.canford.co.uk/RPP-POWER-...-UNITS-Desktop , who sell products by these guys http://www.rpp.uk.com/ . As Canford are suppliers to pro audio users, you can be certain they don't stock and sell anything questionable.

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Old 18th Apr 2019, 9:07 am   #7
MrBungle
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

Thanks all for the suggestions - much appreciated.

I've decided to get a 6-way Brennenstuhl one for all the stuff that is "permanent" and never moved or unplugged, mainly because it's relatively cheap. I do have another one of theirs and didn't find any problems with it other than it's a bit bendy. I'll also buy a 4-way Olson bench top one [1] for the rest of the stuff as that's a bit more changeable (phone/radio chargers + 2 ancillary ones). That solves a lot of current problems crawling around under the bench and banging heads etc. Thanks to Radio Wrangler for pointing them out. We actually use Olson stuff in our DC - never even thought to look there!

[1] https://olsondirect.co.uk/4-way-13a-...bench-pdu.html
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 12:18 pm   #8
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

Another vote for Olson. They are rather expensive new, but good used examples turn up regularly on ebay.
They should be as good as new if from a data center or similar.
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 1:13 pm   #9
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Arrow Re: Decent socket blocks?

Olson distribution board, 5-way; all metal enclosure. I've owned this one for many years. IIRC, I recovered it from the skip at one place I used to work.

Al.
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 1:19 pm   #10
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

This sort's a bit clunky, but you can replace individual sockets (or, depth allowing, replace them for ones with USB built in)

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/EXTENSION...A/163648432760

Or you could join a run of metalclad boxes together with bushes and couplers, and a 20mm gland cable inlet. Very steampunky.
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 1:25 pm   #11
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

Thanks for that link. I'm about 15 minutes from staines where that one is, plus it'll give me an excuse to go in ML&S . Added to watch list
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 3:03 pm   #12
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OscarFoxtrot View Post
This sort's a bit clunky, but you can replace individual sockets (or, depth allowing, replace them for ones with USB built in)

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/EXTENSION...A/163648432760

Or you could join a run of metalclad boxes together with bushes and couplers, and a 20mm gland cable inlet. Very steampunky.
these are the best if you can get them I have 3 off 6 way ones all boot sale finds
and 1 with 2 double 13a sockets
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Old 18th Apr 2019, 5:05 pm   #13
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

The best one I purchased was from RS. It's a 6-way trailing socket with neon but that was back in 1984. It is still in good serviceable condition after 35 years!

The quality of the fittings back then seemed better and more robust.

Regards,
Symon.
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Old 21st Apr 2019, 6:43 pm   #14
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

I've used Olson in the past; these days I generally use "Data-centre" grade stuff - old 19-inch-rack power-strips - Dell P/N G744N (32A input, 20 outlets) are available at pretty-much scrap-prices since these days a data-centre needs each outlet in every rack to be individually IP-addressable and able to report on power-consumption so the old non-individually-addressable stuff is being thrown out.
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Old 21st Apr 2019, 9:23 pm   #15
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

I stripped some of these thing down looking for general Shonkyness and compliance the other week at work, and the LMS data ones are surprisingly good for the money with a stupid range off socket numbers to choose from. I salvaged one for my bench.
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Old 22nd Apr 2019, 12:26 am   #16
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Default Re: Decent socket blocks?

Can you get Jackson ones with UK plugs in your part of the world? If so, their AS/NZS3112 ones are pretty decent. An AV hire company I work with use them as standard for stage work and the like - good enough to not break all the time, cheap enough to replace when they do.

For my workshop I just fixed a ton of PDL500 dual vertical outlets scrounged from our old office when they removed them. Many of the shots I have posted here have them in my background - the attached shows some of them hiding behind a BBC Master
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