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The Site => General discussion => Topic started by: Keyless on June 19, 2016, 04:02:16 am

Title: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 19, 2016, 04:02:16 am
I plan on getting a new Cobra Head fixture but can not decide which one. 150 watt HPS, reactor ballast, drop prismatic lens and photo control. Which one is more durable/reliable?
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 19, 2016, 09:37:42 am
I love GE cobraheads. The M-250R2 is a good solid fixture and will last a long time. The AEL 115 is also a decent fixture, but looking at the fixtures in use around here, the GEs seem to hold up better over time. I think the 115 has a semi-vintage look to it though. It's mostly a matter of personal preference. :)
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 19, 2016, 11:47:26 am
Thanks  :) GE is what the power company uses in my area and the DOT is big on Cooper OVX. The GE does cost more, so I suspected its better quality though I am wonder if its over priced:


https://www.grainger.com/product/4WY43?cm_re=AZHPRV&cm_sp=Home-_-Products_You_Have_Recently_Viewed-_-AZHPRV_61664&cm_vc=AZHPRV_61664


I can get an AEL from my local supply house for around $140 but they don't carry GE. How much do 150 watt reactor ballast M2RRs normally go for? If the Quality is that much better I might go for it. 
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 19, 2016, 12:27:23 pm
You should be able to get a decent cobrahead for $150 or less. NEVER EVER EVER buy street lights from Grainger. Their prices are outrageous. I would buy a cobrahead on eBay. They have some decent lights at lower prices. The Cooper fixtures are decent too. I personally think GE is the best but GE, Cooper, and AEL all make a decent fixture.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: HPSM250R2 on June 19, 2016, 07:22:47 pm
My 150 watt HPS M250R2 cost me around $150 I believe, from Graybar. That was a couple years ago though. I too have noticed the prices on Grainger's website are ridiculous. However, contractors who have an account with Grainger probably get a better price, as they usually buy in larger quantities for jobs.
I will warn you about the AEL fixtures. It seems their quality is going downhill. Nearly all of the newest 115's here have broken refractor door latches. When I'm driving around, I see 115's all over the place with missing latches, and their doors taped closed. I just saw several tonight, along with one with its door open. The open one still had its latch though.
I still like AEL cobraheads though. They just need to watch their quality control.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 19, 2016, 07:37:57 pm
How old are these AELs exactly? That certainly does not sound like good quality control. Is it true that GE now encapsulates their ignitors? And who makes their ballasts? I know AEL uses mostly Advance ballasts so the quality is top notch at least in their gear. AEL's ignitors are open boards standard, but personally I like like that.   ;D
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: HPSM250R2 on June 19, 2016, 08:03:51 pm
I don't know exactly how old they are, but they can't be more than a few years old. Most of them look pretty new.
It has been a few years since I last ordered a new G.E. cobrahead from Graybar, so I couldn't tell you if the igniters are encapsulated. I am pretty sure G.E. makes their HPS ballasts, but they use Advance for PSMH. I could be wrong.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 19, 2016, 08:34:08 pm
 

How do GE ballasts compare to Advance (AEL)?
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 20, 2016, 08:28:00 am
Yeah AEL makes their latches more hollowed out now instead of solid, so it doesn't surprise me that they break very easily. Yeah Grainger contractors get better prices that what's seen on the website. Their website prices are insane.

GE does make their own HPS ballasts, but the PSMH ballasts are sourced from a number of others (Mostly Universal, but some Advance probably too). GE doesn't make PSMH cobraheads anymore. Not since January 1, 2016. They haven't updated their catalogs yet though... GE still uses the same style plug-in ignitor they've used since the 80s.

AEL uses Advance ballasts, but with their own AEL label. GE ballasts are better quality IMO, but they both seem decent. It seems the AEL fixtures use crappy capacitors. Same is true for Advance ballasts in general.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 20, 2016, 10:07:44 am
Thats nice to know GE makes their own ballasts. The ones I've seen look really well made, precision wound. I came across this pic on Google pics where the ignitor seems encapsulated, unless it was a special request?


https://www.flickr.com/photos/116137274@N04/15446154300/in/pool-gallery-of-lights-flickr-extension/lightbox/



Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 20, 2016, 12:04:29 pm
I think he might've custom-ordered that since I've seen M-250R2s since then with the regular ignitors.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 23, 2016, 10:17:07 am
Could be, but to be honest I did not know GE offered that option. Personally I like open board ignitors. About 10 years ago a DOT was throwing out a bunch of HPS cobra heads ( AEL and Cooper OVX) and I remember going for AEL because of the open board ignitor. Personally IMHO I think encapsulated ignitors are over rated, I've seen open boards and open plug ins go for 2 decades without issue.  


One last question. Mounting. Anyone know of a short cross arm (2-5 feet) that can mount to the side of a building?  
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 23, 2016, 04:11:40 pm
I have no preference to open or encapsulated, but encapsulated offer the benefit of nothing being exposed where stuff can touch it and become electrocuted from the ignitor. The open style always seems "hazardous" to me lol.

You mean a mounting arm? (a cross arm is one of those wooden things that goes across a utility pole for the HV wires).  Lithonia Lighting makes a cantilever style steel arm for wall mounting on a building.  (http://www.acuitybrandslighting.com/library/ll/documents/specsheets/pole-smawl.pdf) They also make a longer  upsweep style arm.  (http://www.acuitybrandslighting.com/library/ll/documents/specsheets/pole-smawlu.pdf) Beware though, mounting arms typically go for $100-$200. It's highway robbery because it's a "utility-grade" product.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 23, 2016, 04:48:38 pm
Yes, mounting arm. How well do these mount to vinyl siding (with correct screws of course)? And what pipe size for a cobra head? Would one of those NEMA yard blaster arms work?
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 23, 2016, 06:11:00 pm
I would make sure you hit a stud when you install it, but yeah, it should hold. My lights are installed on my shed and the deck. I didn't want to drill holes in the side of my house...

Those yardblaster arms don't have a thru-bolt flange on them, so they won't be able to hold up a heavy cobrahead (heck they can barely hold up just a 10lb yardblaster lol)
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 24, 2016, 04:22:31 am
Ive seen Yard blaster arms with through bolts meant to mount to poles, so I guess I can take advantage of the through bolt and mount it to my home?
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 24, 2016, 09:44:40 am
Yardblaster arms don't have thru-bolt flanges. If it has a thru-bolt flange, it's a regular street light mounting arm or a NEMA head arm (NEMAs and yardblasters are different lights, the former being a utility-grade light used on wood poles and the latter being a residential knockoff).

Yeah, you can install a regular arm onto your house. Replace the thru-bolt with a 5/8" lag bolt instead and use 1/2" lag bolts for the lag bolt flange.
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Keyless on June 24, 2016, 10:40:05 am
NEMA arm. What size are NEMA arms normally in terms of diameter?
Title: Re: GE M2RR vs AEL 115
Post by: Mike on June 24, 2016, 07:19:22 pm
NEMA head arms are usually 1-1/4" aluminum. Cobraheads can take 1-1/4" or 2" but most NEMA heads have to use 1-1/4". 1-1/4" is plenty strong for a cobrahead too, so I'd go with the 1-1/4". If strength concerns you, go with the 1-1/4" galvanized steel instead of aluminum.