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I'm tryng to select a Bulgin Buccanneer power connector, and the panel-mounted ones come in "Front Panel" and "Rear Panel" varieties. Why is there a distinction?

I'm struggling, because I need a connector to fit on a panel that's on the side...!

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    \$\begingroup\$ If you rotated your panel through 90 degrees, would that make your choice easier? \$\endgroup\$
    – Andy aka
    Jan 25, 2017 at 8:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Andyaka :-) definitely! But which way? If I rotate the wrong axis, I might end up with needing a "top-panel" connector, and they don't do those either! Of course, if I rotate by 180 (in any axis) then front becomes back, and the problem goes away - but I still feel there's ... more ... to it ....? \$\endgroup\$
    – SusanW
    Jan 25, 2017 at 9:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ Are front panel ones prettier? Rear panel ones stick out less? Why not just use your unit sideways? \$\endgroup\$
    – Neil_UK
    Jan 25, 2017 at 9:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SusanW FWIW, front seem to fit in a 27mm hole, and can stick 10 to 20mm depending on number of ways, rear fit in a 35mm hole, and stick out 11mm. \$\endgroup\$
    – Neil_UK
    Jan 25, 2017 at 11:21
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    \$\begingroup\$ @dim Ok, good idea - ok, I've just contacted them, and invited them to post an answer here. The guy at RS didn't know. Maybe the rear one has a crappier "who cares nobody will ever see it" appearance. Or the front one is inscribed with promotional messages from Bulgin commercial partners, and occasionally redirects you to their website. Or am I confusing with Belkin? :-) \$\endgroup\$
    – SusanW
    Jan 25, 2017 at 12:06

2 Answers 2

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This is a case of "does it mount to the panel from the inside (Rear) or outside (Front)?", not "is the panel on the front or rear of the box"!

The rear panel-mount part installs from inside the box and has the jam nut on the outside of the case; the front panel one installs from the outside of the box and has the jam nut on the inside... It is that simple.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Ahh, now this sounds like a remarkably good answer. That ... would explain ... everything ...! Front. Rear. Of course. Nothing to do with using crappy or unsightly materials then. Thank you. \$\endgroup\$
    – SusanW
    Jan 25, 2017 at 16:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ Oh god.... Usually, they use "front-mounting" and "rear-mounting" terms. This would have been much less confusing. Anyway, +1. \$\endgroup\$
    – dim
    Jan 25, 2017 at 20:21
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    \$\begingroup\$ And I've just had a nice reply from Bulgin, confirming your answer as correct. Regarding the front-mounting one, they add "As the majority of the connector would be protruding through the front of the hole, this could be used in applications where space behind the panel/inside the box is very restricted." So, cool. Time to get the credit card out :-) \$\endgroup\$
    – SusanW
    Jan 25, 2017 at 22:31
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Bulgin has uploaded a video demonstrating the difference between the two types - Rear vs Front Panel Mount Connectors

Hope that helps!

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Awesome! Ok, well, I like Bulgin - they were responsive at the time and now they've answered the question forever. And the connectors I bought were just lovely - at the time, I'd spent several days fitting miserable little dupont connectors to stepper-motor extension leads, and when the Bulgin parts arrived, I realized I'd forgotten how good grown-up "industrial automation" components can be compared to "hobby-grade"... :-) \$\endgroup\$
    – SusanW
    Jan 18, 2018 at 8:33

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