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What are the poles on a 9 pin switch; does this mean a row of pins, if so which direction? And also what do the poles represent, and is there so much different between a 6 pin and 9 pin switch other than the extra 3?

Here is the switch:

enter image description here

Thanks, all advice appreciated :D

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Here's a good chart for several switches of this type: -

enter image description here

You will likely find that it matches the 3PDT column but this is not guaranteed so double check with a multimeter.

And, here is what a 4 pole switch does (just a random phot from the internet): -

enter image description here

Hopefully this should make sense - the pole is the pin that connects to either of the other two pins in a single switch element. In the example above there are 4 switch elements all toggled together but, equally it could be a push button.

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On a switch or relay, a pole is one switching circuit, consisting of the Common (moving contact) NC (normally closed) and NO (normally open) terminals.

On a toggle switch, the rows of terminals for a pole are in the same direction as the lever movement, with Common in the center. The closed contact will usually be on the side opposite the lever (lever up, contact is made between center and bottom contacts.)

With a pushbutton, you will have to use an ohmmeter to determine the terminal arrangement.

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