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Print Page - THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!

Gallery of Lights

Unrelated Stuff => Forum Games => Topic started by: Lil'Cinnamon on November 21, 2009, 12:05:42 AM



Title: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on November 21, 2009, 12:05:42 AM
Just chat about ANYTHING! whatever you want. you dont have to stay on topic.

So anyways:

How are you all?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on November 21, 2009, 01:18:10 AM
I just absolutely love what you just made...all 3 of them in other chats! This can help relationship better. I have been in other forums like this!

I have been having some fun with a computer game called "The Sims 3" and I am also playing the expansion pack..


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on November 23, 2009, 06:17:55 PM
That sounds fun Jace, I am uploading a pic or two here. This is a great idea,  8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: lightman64 on November 23, 2009, 09:20:04 PM
Not to be rude, but who is Lil'Cinnamon? Did he/she go by another name on LG?
Thanks!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Vince on November 23, 2009, 09:59:51 PM
He's !KEDER on LG  ;D

Well, I am currently reading Wikis about lamp technologies, it's really cool!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on November 24, 2009, 02:33:02 AM
He wanted to change his name in LG, but I wouldn't allow it since it would cause CONFUSION! Like just now Lightman64 did not know who he was! I donno if Brian in LG will allow him to change it.


Please CHOOSE carefully when making a screen name

I only change sign in names ONLY if there was VERY good REASON!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on December 29, 2009, 10:08:57 AM
What are you guys thinking now? What did you guys get for Christmas?!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: RCM on December 29, 2009, 08:49:16 PM
ehh, stuff...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on December 29, 2009, 09:59:18 PM
oh be more speicific than that...be less vague! ;-)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on December 30, 2009, 04:16:05 AM
What I got for chrismass
probe start Mh ballast 150/175W
150W coated 3,400K phillips probe start lamp(should come in tommorow) on backorder)
Phillips 400W MV coated
skis W/poles
DB bike
2 ushio ccfl's
cross country varsity jacket
1 yellow hoodie
1 striped sweatshirt
Money$
I think that was it..


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Vince on December 30, 2009, 12:07:39 PM
I got an iPod Touch, very happy to have one, it's so cool! Now I can go on Gallery of Lights outside my house! (Where Wi-Fi is available). I also got some bucks, most likely for lamps  ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on December 30, 2009, 09:13:46 PM
Hi people.

*want's to role play*


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on December 30, 2009, 10:13:00 PM
you should be able to upload pics from iPod Touch too!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on December 30, 2009, 10:29:17 PM
Not really. they don't have an SD card reader.

I will browse this site with my Ipod touch, not upload pics though.

plus they don't even have a camera!!!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on December 31, 2009, 01:26:20 PM
Oh...oh well....I have the Android....it has a 5 MP camera on it!...I met up with FGS today.....FUN FUN FUN...he saw my new Android phone today! He also gave me 3 cool things, and I have him a cool thing...and surprised him with one thing.....hehehe


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Form109 on January 03, 2010, 04:18:40 PM
Well...ive been Hitting the Flea Makets mainly For Audio Parts lately....they have Two Shoplights i might Pick up though... ;D

on the Other Hand i Just Ordered over 150 Dollars Worth of Audio Parts over the internet.

Putting together a Groovin Sound System. :)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on January 13, 2010, 01:26:29 AM
Currently cannot sleep, and I want to upload pics but the other computer is messed up. I have a lot of new interesting stuff!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on January 13, 2010, 11:32:27 PM
hmmmm what's wrong with it???


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on January 16, 2010, 10:20:38 AM
Gimp , that photo editer is not working, since i downloaded the 2010 version of linux, i could just use an online photo editer.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on January 17, 2010, 02:14:12 PM
Ah...Linux! They are awesome.....Windows...nuh huh! but Macs THEY ROCK!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on January 18, 2010, 03:35:47 PM
I'm still using windows but I agree Macs and Linux are nice operating systems.

Anyways I'm looking around for road signs and highway markers for my road sign collection.  I have exams coming for me in school now though so I'll be quite busy for the next 2 weeks.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on January 24, 2010, 05:03:04 PM
Hey, Anyone even here?!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: RCM on January 24, 2010, 08:14:24 PM
I am! :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on January 24, 2010, 09:24:17 PM
I also check in from time to time.  ;)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on January 24, 2010, 10:14:36 PM
Even though you are guest over half the time...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on January 24, 2010, 10:28:28 PM
Yeah, I usually don't login unless I have something to post or to upload. I do this this on most of the forum I've been to.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: lightman64 on January 25, 2010, 08:35:45 PM
Its kinda fun to log into Lighting- Gallery and see who is online and what they are looking at. Kinda stalker though...
I wonder why my cats like those Temptations treats so much. They probably have like MSG or something....


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: RCM on January 25, 2010, 11:57:25 PM
my cat LOVES those too! He's always begging me for them!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on January 29, 2010, 12:41:52 AM
Why does EVERY lighting person have a cat?! Am I the only one that has a DOG? (except FGS.)

It is like a commodity for everyone here LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on January 29, 2010, 12:56:32 AM
Nah, I don't have a cat or a dog lol, so I'm also part of the group without a cat  :D

Cats and lighting must be connected somehow...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on January 30, 2010, 04:41:26 AM
I have TWO cats and a dog....so I have a dog too......


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Vince on February 05, 2010, 12:41:59 PM
I have a cat, it broke an ALTO F34CW once (well, not a big deal LOL). There was a Sylvania F34 from the late 90s with it, but fortunately I placed it on the protected side, so the ALTO broke, but not the Sylvania.  ;D

I have a CGE F20T12/D now in service in my basement for a year (with pretty frequent use) and it still has no blackening yet! CGE made so good stuff back then...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on August 08, 2010, 11:04:03 PM
im about to drink some iced tea and im just sitting here realizing ive sat ALL day and my summer is fading...........


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on August 10, 2010, 09:24:14 PM
Most of what I did was work during the summer...I haven't swam in a swimming pool since 2 year ago!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: SeanB~1 on August 11, 2010, 04:49:14 PM
Bad gull, even the birds like to have a dip every now and then. Even the rescue dove I am hand feeding until it is old enough to fly away.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Form109 on August 12, 2010, 03:01:13 PM
well if you havent Swam how do you Bathe Gull?

you must Reek Terribly. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 11, 2010, 08:05:39 AM
 :D I'm just chillin' at 8:05AM with my 250w MH/MV wallpack running a metalarc.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on December 11, 2010, 03:59:46 PM
I got a new computer!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on July 26, 2011, 11:30:15 AM
@jace: what computer?

I got my extreme  gas scooter tire fixed, its great for riding around the subdivision on trash day looking for lights and lawn equipment!

What about everyone else? This off topic thing should be poplular lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on July 26, 2011, 01:09:54 PM
Aaron, you are way 7 months too late but I did get a Cyberpower PC


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 26, 2011, 05:30:21 PM
I just got a new Acer laptop. ;D ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on July 29, 2011, 04:56:41 PM
I got a quantaray tablet that runs google Android And I'm currenly using it right now!
And I got a bunch of used GTE/sylvania Circlines and GEs too! As well as a DX MV lamp , and 2 gas powered trimmers


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 10, 2011, 10:11:01 PM
He wanted to change his name in LG, but I wouldn't allow it since it would cause CONFUSION! Like just now Lightman64 did not know who he was! I donno if Brian in LG will allow him to change it.


Please CHOOSE carefully when making a screen name

I only change sign in names ONLY if there was VERY good REASON!

How come your forum name and gallery name are different?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Jace the Gull on August 12, 2011, 10:17:42 PM
Powerful Admins  :P ::)  Me and Vince have our real names posted.....and I haven't yet to make a code for gallery to show the real name....only the sign in name....



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 03, 2011, 08:38:12 PM
Can you do that to us too? :P ;D Please???? :MV: :MV: :MV:


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 03, 2011, 08:57:03 PM
Of course I can, :P Maybe I'll name you "joe_347v" ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 03, 2011, 09:17:11 PM
I name myself Mike. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 03, 2011, 09:29:35 PM
Mike_277V then. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 03, 2011, 09:47:05 PM
Mike_120v  :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 04, 2011, 09:50:48 PM
"Mike_120/208/240/277/347/480/600V" You're multitap ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 04, 2011, 10:02:32 PM
Ahg. Mike_mulitvolt :P :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 10:39:05 PM
As you know, my utility room and laundry/light room have T8 fluorescents. I hate the Lithonia one. It's cause so much trouble. :8) The American Fluorescent one is good stuff thoguh.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:27:02 PM
The brand really doesn't mean anything IMO, I've had a cheapo American Fluorescent wrap that ate lamps and was cheaply made and I also had a well built Lithonia HO striplight.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 11:29:32 PM
I know. It's just in how it was made. I don't like how the lamps are in series because when one goes out, so does the other. And on the AF one, I can run T12 on the ballast. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:31:04 PM
That's usually the sign of a cheapo ballast, high quality ones usually only run a small handful of lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 11:32:57 PM
It will only run F174T8 and F20T12. That's it.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:34:48 PM
Yeah but since T8 and T12 have different voltage and current requirements most good ballasts don't run both types.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 11:36:59 PM
Maybe it's not such a good ballast then. The fixture itself is better built though. Not as flimsy.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:38:41 PM
Personally I'd either buy a more expensive fixture or get a older one from Restore and then clean it up nowadays.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 11:40:48 PM
Me too. Or just buy an HID lowbay. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:42:07 PM
Not really practical in a laundry room. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 11:46:10 PM
It's my light storage room too. :P ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:50:02 PM
My lights are scattered around. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2011, 11:55:05 PM
If my lights were scattered around I wouldn't have any. My mother is a "neat freak".


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 29, 2011, 11:57:21 PM
You should see my room. O_o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 30, 2011, 12:05:07 AM
You would never know I collected lights by looking at my bedroom unless you knew what those colorful paper tas on my wall were lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 30, 2011, 12:07:20 AM
I have a couple of vintage BT lamps as decorations. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 30, 2011, 12:09:13 AM
I have more traffic sign related items in my bedroom than lighting.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 30, 2011, 12:20:27 AM
I have four Ontario shields and one Interstate shield in my room. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 30, 2011, 09:57:54 AM
I have random signs in my room. All my authentic signs are in my back yard. i have some faux copies of signs in my room thoguh.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 30, 2011, 01:00:32 PM
I keep all my road signs indoors, the ones that don't get hung go in a corner in the garage.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 30, 2011, 01:12:32 PM
I actually restored two of my No Parking signs. The letters were faded and unreadable.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 12, 2011, 12:55:47 PM
I just found out that my camera can take videos!! :o :D This server won't let me upload them though. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on November 12, 2011, 01:25:22 PM
I've just found some old B2217s with PCs and a nice row of MERCURY VAPOUR B2227s, pics to come when I get home.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 12, 2011, 02:18:10 PM
I just ate lunch. :D Nothing special about waffles and blueberry yogurt through.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on November 12, 2011, 03:46:57 PM
Pictures are now and I also rearranged my streetlight albums a bit.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 13, 2011, 08:57:03 PM
I created some new albums and rearranged some pics too. I also have a new you tube account. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on November 19, 2011, 11:32:27 AM
At a robotics completion.  40% of the sylvania T8 lamps are burned out in this gym! :-\, possibly some ballasts too


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on November 19, 2011, 06:18:21 PM
I've noticed that one of the houses on my street has a cycling HPS wallpack.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 20, 2011, 08:08:10 PM
The lights on my street that were cycling have been fixed! They seem to be very yellowish....


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on November 23, 2011, 07:44:48 PM
Its possible they are non cycling lamps,  or HG free as those do look  orange compared to a normal HPS


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 23, 2011, 07:52:20 PM
They're not non-cycling. My utilty is too cheap to use those. I think the lamps are GE. So most likely they're Ecolux.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 03, 2011, 12:49:14 PM
I just found a 175w merc Advance F can ballast. O_o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2011, 03:09:32 PM
Where on earth did you find one of those?!?!?! :D :o :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 04, 2011, 04:22:05 PM
Where on earth did you find one of those?!?!?! :D :o :D

I guess you didn't open my pic (http://www.galleryoflights.org/mb/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-9802)..... ??? :-\


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2011, 06:30:12 PM
You didn't link it before. I've been away this weekend until this morning, so I'm still tryign to catch up on the site's uploads.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 04, 2011, 07:27:01 PM
Didn't have the pic uploaded when I posted that comment, I was on my phone. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2011, 08:33:32 PM
how would you've expected me to know then. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 04, 2011, 09:37:15 PM
I've noticed you got rid of the green diamond. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2011, 09:51:50 PM
I got rid of Michael Industries period. :P Just Michael Lighting now. Michael Electrical will be a sub-company under Michael Lighting now.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 04, 2011, 09:53:44 PM
It's still referenced in your website title. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 05, 2011, 07:32:17 PM
Thanks for telling me that lol.  Just fixed it. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 05, 2011, 11:01:14 PM
Thanks for telling me that lol.  Just fixed it. ;D

Now you have to remove the reference from your data sheets. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 06, 2011, 05:21:15 PM
Right, but I'm not going to change the pics of them on here, just in my files. Right around the new year, I'll change "©2011 Michael Industries-Michael Lighting" to "©2012 Michael Lighting"


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 23, 2012, 04:13:37 PM
New find! I found this bad boy today, more
pics to come when I get on a computer.
(http://i560.photobucket.com/albums/ss50/joseph_125ON/Gallery%20of%20Lights/290faaaa.jpg)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 23, 2012, 05:02:54 PM
Sweet! :D You found a gumball- in a carriage! :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 23, 2012, 05:45:25 PM
Lol thanks Mike! and it's made by Powerlite too O_o
Oh and I think that was a old shopping cart. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 23, 2012, 06:10:08 PM
Yep I know, but in RI most people call it a carriage. I know- weird eh?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 23, 2012, 06:45:45 PM
Ahh, I never heard them being called carriages here before. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 23, 2012, 07:38:08 PM
Yep here's a pic of a Stop & Shop sign asking for carriages here  (http://i304.photobucket.com/albums/nn194/atfulcrum/stop%20and%20or%20shop/IMG00667.jpg)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 23, 2012, 08:58:40 PM
Interesting, and btw, I posted some pics of the gumball in my gallery. :incandescent:


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 24, 2012, 10:50:23 AM
Saw the pics. That's one cool gumball you have there. :D I just got some pics of the a street light dumpster in Massachusetts from Joe Maurath. i'll post 'em in a bit. Thankfully any mercs in good condition came out of the dumpster and home with Joe.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 28, 2012, 02:10:54 AM
I guess thanks lol, funny thing is I didn't even know Powerlite even made a gumball until that point.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 03, 2012, 09:59:50 AM
It wouldn't surprise me if they made clamshells too. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 03, 2012, 12:16:21 PM
Yeah me too, in fact I only recently found out that they made fluorescent streetlights. (http://www.galleryoflights.org/mb/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-10437) :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 21, 2012, 10:11:27 PM
@streetlight98: I think T8 has some kinks to be worked out, as of yet
I need to expand my collection, would like to get more small (below 175w) HID lamps :MV: :hps:, and some vintage old household incandescent bulbs someday. Maybe a  :CCW: adapter or two.
By the way, does anybody else here like heavy equipment, mainly excavators? I do!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 22, 2012, 07:18:46 PM
Just finished a social studies project on Sarah Palin...

It feels like summer here with it topping above 75*F every day this week so far. :o Tomorrow will be the same but Saturday-Monday will be in the upper 50's and Tuesday in the upper 40's. Then after that it's back to 50's and 60's. Very pleasing weather and low humidity too which is great. I have a feeling it's going to be a cool(ish) and rainy summer though. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 22, 2012, 07:20:51 PM
I think we hit 26 C/78 F today :o It's been a pretty warm week here too. I've wearing a T shirt and shorts for the past few days. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 22, 2012, 07:30:45 PM
I never wore a long sleeve shirt at all this winter. I switched to shorts about a week ago since that when it started getting warm. Now that it's been warm for a few days now, the school is really holding in the heat.

The heat is oppressive at my school when it starts getting really warm. When it's been 85-95*F for a few days, the school can easily get up to 100*F on the second floor! :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 07, 2012, 12:06:41 PM
I just converted my trigger start closet light to preheat. :D Good news is that it's done and works. Bad news is that it's loose on the wall because the screws were only screwed into drywall and now I sort of made the hole too big. I used wider screws and that seemed to solve it though. The starter socket isn't lined up perfectly with the knockout, but I can still remove and install starters though. i used a Universal preheat choke that Aaron sent me as well as the Cooper starter he sent me. Pics to come soon. ;)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 15, 2012, 12:32:37 AM
That's really cool Mike!
Judging by our posts in "Guess the Song" I think Mike and I like the same kind of music...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 15, 2012, 01:41:43 PM
Hmm did you use drywall anchors when mounting the light back on Mike? I find that toggle bolts (http://www.ameribestfasteners.com/SPRING.gif) hold the most weight and are most commonly used to mount fluorescent fixtures but you can't reuse them since the toggle falls in the wall when you take them off. these (http://image.made-in-china.com/2f0j00gBKQabsqbVch/Plastic-Toggle-Bolt.jpg) and these (http://www.lemurzone.com/rfg/wp-content/uploads/walldriller.jpg) are also good since you can reuse them.

These (http://www.naturalhandyman.com/iip/inffastener/i/plastic1.jpg) work in a pinch but aren't that good for drywall since they tend to loosen up over time but they work fine in brick and concrete though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 15, 2012, 04:00:02 PM
The light was actually mounted useing drywall screws. The only flaw was that it was drilled into the drywall and not a beam. Using a slightly wider screw seemed to do the job but i noticed it's sagging down a bit. I'll have to try those toggle screws. I think before i move out i'll reinstall the trigger start ballast though becuase i don't want to confuse any future homeowners lol.

BTW, Andy my favorite bands are Metallica, Avenged Sevenfold, Disturbed, Fear Factory , Mudvayne, Pink Floyd, Chevelle, Tool, and the Rolling stones (yeah i know odd for me to like the stones and pink floyd when all the other bands are heavy rock/metal LOL).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 15, 2012, 04:10:07 PM
Hmm if you're talking about these

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c8/Drywall-screws-v1_%281%29.png/320px-Drywall-screws-v1_%281%29.png)

Then they're not very good since they're supposed to be used to mount drywall onto the framing, I wonder why they didn't use drywall anchors or toggle bolts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 15, 2012, 04:14:27 PM
Yep just like what you pictured. No juction box either. The wire enters a knockout on the back and has this black plastic crimp-type thing that keeps the wire from pulling out. It was a real "PITA" to take that light down lol. Also, how do you tighten those toggle screws? Won't the toggle just spin with the screw as you try to tighten it?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 15, 2012, 04:23:47 PM
Hmm, I like using the cable clamps with screws more rather than those plastic ring things, anyways you tighten the toggle screws by pulling them with one had while turning your screwdriver with your other hand.

A warning though, once you pop the toggle in you can't unscrew it without the toggle part falling into the wall so you'll have to get a new toggle every time you unscrew it.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 17, 2012, 03:32:00 PM
Yeah, I like a lot of 70s and 80s rock music, and some new stuff too.
Has anybody else had a song stuck in their head for days at a time?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2012, 09:01:32 PM
My collection is adding up! I have nine spare warm white GE MainLighters laying around and today I learned of a potential opportunity to get some fixtures or at least lamps/sockets/ballasts...I really need some F40T12 ballasts...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2012, 10:40:31 PM
i got an electric clock! :o ;D Made by GE with the oldish GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC logo. :)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2012, 12:05:53 AM
Cool!
I fired up a 400w metal halide lamp today.  I also re-wired the Lithiona Hi-Tek highbay I fired it up in and need to replace the cords on the other two. 
IT'S BRIGHT! I will upload some pics of this beast!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 27, 2012, 01:38:13 AM
I got a new camera today. :P Hopefully my pictures will better from now on.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2012, 09:00:16 PM
Cool, I also got a new camera but my older one seemed better...
It's first video was a 400w MH firing up...but it came out poorly so before it gets uploaded to this site or YouTube or anything I might redo it...I might also do a video of a clear lamp firing up instead of the coated one...
I also might be getting some used magnetic HPF RS F40T12 ballasts soon...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 20, 2013, 08:03:22 PM
I have some lighting videos i posted in the "General Videos" section if you guys are interested. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 22, 2013, 09:42:30 PM
In the last week I have acquired two florescent fixtures from my school...
It hasn't snowed lately and thankfully it's melted off for the most part but if it does snow more I plan to build a snow fort then try to knock it down...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on January 27, 2013, 02:42:08 PM
Relamped one of the kitchen lights today, one of the Philips F32T8/850 lamps I installed in mid 2009 did a EOL show before the ballast shut it off. Put an identical lamp in.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 27, 2013, 08:43:48 PM
Did it lose vacuum?
Today it snowed and I built some snow sculptures, they will probably meet a four-wheeler sometime soon...or melt...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on February 03, 2013, 12:16:23 PM
today is a boring day, went to work and put up a bunch of sale stickers on the shelves that went ok, but now there is nothing to do! not even any lighting projects i have in mind and organized the room a bit, i did find a emergency back up ballast on ebay and it should be here tomorrow, and its brand is " PILA, 500" i just hope its not a pile of crap!  :P :P but it was $17 shipped to the door!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 04, 2013, 09:08:22 PM
I had to relamp my bathroom light, the Sylvania Octron 3500K F32T8 died, and I replaced it and the still-working (but blackened) GE EcoLux with post-EPACT, pre-2003 GE 34w Watt-misers...they seem to work fine on the F32T8 ballast but are noticeably dimmer than what they replaced...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 15, 2013, 08:27:28 PM
i installed my val-mount electric VAL-MISER ballast in my 1973 shoplite in place of the Univeral ballast to eliminate any PCB risk.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 15, 2013, 09:14:33 PM
Please tell me you're keeping that Universal as a backup!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 21, 2013, 07:10:34 PM
Of course i'm keeping it! :P i'll put it on display when i get my own house. 8) My grandpa has a bunch of display cases for his cars and he said i can have as many of them as i want (that is if i can drag them out of the basement lol) The display cases have very old preheat T12 and T8s in them that i'll remove from all the cases i don't take (he already gave me permission, though he said not to do it until he gets the cars out of the cases, which will be never lol) I'll only be taking one big case and maybe one small one.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 21, 2013, 08:52:33 PM
Yeah, that would be cool for displaying old stuff for sure!
You could even wire up that Universal (exposed wires so it's viewable) to a pair of era-appropriate lamps and have it hooked to power so you could fire it up occasionally!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 23, 2013, 05:40:59 PM
Yeah the display cases will be nice when/if i ever get them. Most have two F20T12s with preheat chokes while others have i THINK F64T8s? and one looks to have a 3 or four foot preheat T8. The T8s are blackenders while the T12s are just 90s lamps it seems.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 23, 2013, 06:39:31 PM
Regardless, they will be vintage someday!
I tried my previously-assumed-dead Advance ballast and I think it's officially toast...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 24, 2013, 04:10:00 PM
how is it's behavior? What do the lamps do? Try running the ballast for a couple hours straight and monitor the temperature of it. Has any tar leaked from it? If no tar has ever leaked and it doesn't run hot i hvae no clue why it's nead. Perhaps the starting cap died? ???


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 24, 2013, 07:05:34 PM
I just won a F40T12 two lamp preheat ballast!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 24, 2013, 09:42:51 PM
@Mike, nah it does nothing...time for the recycle pile I think...
@Jospeh, cool! What brand is it? How old?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 24, 2013, 09:57:38 PM
@ Joe Nice! Is it the GE ones that you pointed out to me?

@Andy; ahh yep sounds like it's no good except for display or as a paperweight lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 24, 2013, 09:59:15 PM
You forgot doorstop or area rug edge flattener...I've flattened a rug with that same ballast and another dead one before...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on February 24, 2013, 10:50:57 PM
It's a Universal #203 two lamp preheat ballast like these (http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-58712)

It's NOS in original box too. It dosen't have thermal protection so I'm going to fuse it at 1A and use reset starters if I can find them. Also full power lamps only for this baby.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 25, 2013, 08:56:18 PM
Agreed. Don't let 34w lamps anywhere NEAR that thing LOL...
Universal sure made some pretty cool ballasts!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 02, 2013, 11:49:24 AM
yeah universal was pretty cool back then!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 02, 2013, 12:23:01 PM
Here's an off-topic one...yesterday I did that "Incandescent Florescent Ballast" test. I used an EOL Sylvania Design 50 F15T8 (look in my gallery) that I had/have laying around that wasn't dong much of anything since it was/is EOL and strobes/rectifies on the proper preheat ballast.  So I wired up a test thingy with a duplex receptacle where the ballast would be in a normal "choke" type preheat setup, and a very well-used/worn-out On Guard FS-2 starter that was very slow/weak with the proper ballast/lamp. I first tried it with a 1960s-70s era 15w Sylvania incandescent bulb (see my gallery) as the ballast, then a 40w 130v bulb, a 40w 120v GE bulb, a 60w 130v bulb, a 60w 120v Western Family bulb, a 75w SLI/EXTRALIFE inside frost bulb, a 100w 130v bulb, and a 100w 120v bulb.  I only got a clicking starter, flickering incandescent, etc. with anything below a 130v 75w bulb, which after much blinkage/rectification finally lit (albeit dimly and rectifying). A 75w 120v GE bulb seemed about right.  A 100w incandescent works perfectly, although likely a bit overdriven since it quickly triggers the (normally slow/weak) starter and lights the tube brightly.  It doesn't even seem to be rectifying.
I also tried it with 100 mini christmas lights with flasher bulbs and that was interesting!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 05, 2013, 04:06:01 PM
Well, my preheat ballast just came in today, pics to come when I get home. xP


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 05, 2013, 04:34:58 PM
Hmm. I came home from school yesterday and was told that my aunt's dad was cleaning out his father's house and has some goodies i may like. :D I don't know what they are. They could be a few modern incandescents or a Westie LifeGuard for a yard blaster in the back or heck, maybe even an NOS cobrahead that was going to be used as a yardlight but was never installed. Anyways, it's probably incandescent lamps but nonetheless, I can't wait to find out what it is! I have no clue when I'll get it though since i don't often see them, but you'll know when i get it since I'll be posting pics. ;) 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 05, 2013, 11:29:25 PM
Cool, hope it's some goodies!
I fired up the 2005 Philips 400w MH lamp I was given a couple days ago for the first time earlier today.  It's nice and bright! Needless to say my Lithiona Hi-Tek highbay has a new lamp now; I'm going to use it most of the time instead of the used/who knows how old lamp I was using (well actually at least a dozen used lamps but I was using one in particular.
The last few days have been good for lighting acquisitions...two LOA 22w circline adapters, (one NOS with original box, one lampless but I tested it with an ACE cool white lamp and it works), two fake-Westinghouse GU24 CFL porch lights (one of which I'm in the process of converting to E26 screw), a 15w Sylvania incandescent identical to the one I have posted in my gallery, a 15w vintage GE bulb, a post-October-2003 GE cool white 34w Watt-Miser, and of course the 400w MH lamp and lots of other vintage bulbs like old CFLs (Osram, MaxLite, LOA, etc), and other goodies!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 06, 2013, 12:12:44 AM
Well, normally I would assume it's just a bunch of light bulbs but with the stuff in your family it could be anything. Maybe even a unused T17 fixture O_o. Anyway I hope you get some good stuff.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 06, 2013, 08:51:48 PM
Hope it's a T-17 fixture too!
I have a near-EOL GE F40CW that has very black ends/worn phosphor and you can even see one electrode and the mercury discharge!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 07, 2013, 09:32:56 PM
I think I'd pass out if an NOS T17 was revealed to me. :o :D Heck there's two in my family and that's a real rarity. :o It's kinda cool how there's all these vintage fluorescents in my family. I guess it makes for a really easy way to get vintage fluoros lol. To think back in their heyday most of the fixtures were just residential grade stuff (excpet the T17s and F40 industrials in my grandpa's garage which are definetly high-grade) but now they're all industrial grade compared to the tin foil on the market now. I have no clue what kind of lighting surprise awaits but I'll be happy even if it's just a few store brand incandescents. I don't want to get my hopes up too much since I don't want to be let down when it's not a T17 lol.

Oh BTW, i forgot to mention that I converted the chandelier in my grandparent's dining room from 40W incandescent to 43W halogen with my four pack of Sylvania supersavers. I removed four working GE 40W soft whites. They look rather recent but the bulbs haven't been changed in a while. My grandma was complaining about the dining room being too dim and my grandpa didn't want to use more electricity with 60W lamps since that's 80W more, so i installed my 43W halogens which are actually too bright for the room, so the dimmer is set between 2/3 and 3/4 which means they save more energy than originally and the lamp life is longer.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 08, 2013, 12:19:25 AM
I had to replace a florescent tube today...a GE F40CW with heavy end banding started acting up in my Sears shoplight. I replaced it with a warm white GE Mainlighter and the F40CW is now running in the fixture with the .77 amp Advance ballast and seems okay, but I suspect it's days are numbered!
I also installed a few CFLs at my house recently.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 09, 2013, 07:44:00 AM
How old was the F40CW?

Okay, i got the stuff last night and you will not BELIEVE what i got!!!! :o Yes, it's three inandescent lamps, but the KIND of lamps is beyond my wildest expectation! :D Pics to come. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 09, 2013, 01:22:22 PM
It has the GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC etch and isn't a Mainlighter (oh how I wish I had a cool white Mainlighter; all mine are warm white) so I'm guessing somewhere in between 1985-1992.
It's still working okay in the fixture from my school with the .77 amp Advance ballast (which will also allow rectification (and maybe mercury migration??).
The Mainlighter I replaced it with is (according to Dave Silverliner) from May of 1979 and made at the Jackson, Mississippi factory if I remember correctly...I have another date code I need to post and have dated...if you want a "big-3" (GE, Sylvania, Westinghouse/Philips) post a pic of it's etch (and preferably endcap) on LG and somebody will probably respond with a date...
My three vintage florescents (the two lights from my school and the Sears shoplight) will go with me when I move out for sure!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 09, 2013, 10:04:23 PM
Yeah, I'm surprised where they found the stuff from, especially that neon lamp and that 250v bulb.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 11, 2013, 08:26:38 PM
Me too! I need to post my 15w GE that looks vintage sometime...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on March 11, 2013, 11:35:15 PM
i saw a 277V Damar incandescent on LG , talk about an odd ball


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 12, 2013, 05:35:14 PM
277V, that must be pretty dim on 120V :o :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 12, 2013, 11:14:10 PM
Yeah, I bet!
I saw an interesting "mod" in an overhead projector today at school- someome had stuck a movie light in there with one 15w Sylvania bulb like the two I have. Of course it didn't work all that well! Found it funny, though!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 12, 2013, 11:33:06 PM
Apparently Sylvania (http://www.elightbulbs.com/Sylvania-13397-100A21-277V-A21-Light-Bulb) makes them too.

I guess 347v incandescents aren't made though. I think code dosen't allow them since the voltage is too high. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 13, 2013, 11:12:29 AM
Why, is there a danger of it exploding or something?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 13, 2013, 04:44:26 PM
i bet a 347V lamp on 120V will last a LOOOOONG time! And be very dim and inefficeient too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 13, 2013, 08:28:56 PM
How about an "extended life" one of those?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 14, 2013, 05:25:18 PM
that'd last so long i don't think you could measure its life!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 15, 2013, 12:10:55 AM
Dave Silverliner has an Eternity 56,000 hour bulb and it's 120v...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 15, 2013, 03:59:53 PM
Must be a 277V lamp or somethign rated at 120V. 56000 hours! :o try comparing that to any other lamp type! That's the good thing about incandescent; you can virually make it last and long as you want by operating it on a lower voltage. Granted it's not as efficient, but when you have a chandelier over a staircase i think you'd choose a 105W 56000 hour lamp over a 23W 10000 hour lamp if you're the one who has to change the light bulbs. Or you could be like my family and just not ever use the light over the stairs so we don't ever have to change the bulbs lol. It's probably been used only a few hours in the 9 years the house has been around lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 16, 2013, 01:06:33 PM
Any idea what bulbs are in that light?
I put in a warm white GE  Mainlighter today...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 16, 2013, 04:11:26 PM
either 40 or 60W soft white lamps. i think 60W... I don't know the brand though but I assume all the lamps are the same brand.

The preheater in the bathroom at my grandpa's shop has two GE pre ecolux cool white lamps. They say F40T12 but i didn't realize that the 34W lamps say F40T12 instead of F34t12. >:( seems too confusing. anyways, i'll have to check to make sure they're not 34W. :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 16, 2013, 06:39:30 PM
Do they have the "Big Meatball" etch still with the F40CW ordering code/ no encircled "E"? That means they're pre-EPCAT.
Or do they have the GENERAL(GE) ELECTRIC etch? Or better yet, Mainlighter?
One way to figure out if the lamps are 34w is if they flicker/swirl/striate when cold. Is it somewhat chilly in there? (60F or below)? If so, the characteristic flickering of 34 watt tubes should be noticeable. 
Yes, ordering codes on florescent tubes can be VERY confusing! My post-EPACT, pre-2003 GE 34w Watt-Misers have this ordering code (I THINK): F40CW/RS/WM. And just today I found out from your "Operating T8s on T12 ballasts" thread in the forum that 34w tubes are halophosphate; the encircled E means it's post-EPACT, when the rule was either high CRI or reduced wattage.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 16, 2013, 10:32:39 PM
they had the meatball logo. it was either really big or smaller... the etch was black but that's all i remember. they are newish lamps IIRC as one lamp used to be out. Does GE still make any black etched lamps or are they all green etched?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 16, 2013, 11:06:22 PM
Non-Ecolux lamps are still black etched and the Reveal fluorescents have blue etches.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 17, 2013, 01:55:30 PM
they still make non-eco fluorescent lamps? i thought all of their lamps were eco now. So they make non-eco HPS lamps too? does phillips make non-alto HPS lamps?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 17, 2013, 02:18:15 PM
Well, I think GE's HO/VHO, preheat T5, T17, and SL (other than 8') lamps are still non-eco

I'm not sure if anyone still makes the non-eco HPS lamps though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 17, 2013, 03:05:42 PM
ahh what about the 4ft lamps?

Also, do you know how long the f32t8 philips lamps have been Alto?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 17, 2013, 09:19:53 PM
I'm not quite sure about 4' lamps but I think high CRI, blacklight, and other specialty 4' lamps might still be full mercury.

Not sure when the F32T8s became Alto but my guess is sometime between '96 and '99.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 17, 2013, 09:50:19 PM
I think specialty lamps are still full-mercury except for plant tubes...
Imagine specialty tubes in 34w versions...or F40T12s and F34T12s with 2700K triphosphors like spiral CFLs?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on March 20, 2013, 02:08:44 AM
hey mike, i think the F32T8's became alto around 1998, the early ones had the ALTO vertical etched


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 20, 2013, 02:46:02 PM
ahh. i'm trying to figure out how old the altos in my cousin's grandma's garage are since they're 32W altos in a 10-pack next to four shoplite boxes with three shoplites, the fourth shoplite had already been installed.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 22, 2013, 10:26:35 PM
A pic of them might help...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: A_lights on March 23, 2013, 01:38:03 AM
Lol so much for an off topic category  :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 23, 2013, 05:41:11 PM
LOL it said chat about anything, so...
I ran my (nearly NOS) 400w Philips metal halide lamp for about half an hour last night and it got pretty bright! It also cleaned up the arctube from the last time it ran; the middle seems clearer.  Maybe all the halide salts/gases are getting vaporized, etc?
It starts out a dim blue-green with the electrodes glowing like an incandescent lamp, then goes to this stage where it's the blue-green-white of a clear mercury vapor lamp and about (my estimate) about as bright as a 175w mercury vapor lamp, stays there for awhile, then goes to this yellowish-orange (warmer than incandescent but cooler/whiter than HPS) then eventually shifts to the final warmish-white color. 
It's ran less than an hour for it's whole life I'm sure.  I plan to fire it up on it's "birthday" (sleeve says it was manufactured April 25, 2005). So for it's 8th birthday I plan to fire it up, even if for only a few minutes.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 23, 2013, 07:58:18 PM
Went to Restore (again) and picked up an odd G36T6 and a GE Canada F15T12 with the old style etch. Also picked up a Philips full power RS ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 23, 2013, 09:48:58 PM
Congrats on your ReStore finds, can you post pics of the F15 GE and Philips ballast please?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 24, 2013, 01:01:45 PM
nice restore finds! i plan to go back to them over april vacation. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 24, 2013, 08:02:56 PM
You should. BTW, I got a GE preheat Compax CFL today!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 24, 2013, 09:27:27 PM
cool! post a pic! ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 25, 2013, 11:50:35 PM
I posted one for you, and another one of it compared to the GE FLB/17 I already had for awhile.  Check my gallery (on here of course and it's posted on LG too).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 26, 2013, 11:37:21 PM
I got another table lamp today which had a 5000K Satco 13w spiral CFL.  It came from the same house as another table lamp and my Sears shoplight. 
That house used to belong to one of my current teachers, and another dear friend (whom I haven't seen in a couple years now) also lived there at one time.  It's being demolished around April 8th and I went back there today (I know the owner and the people who are taking everything re-usable out of there first).  I knew the house was going to be demolished sometime within the next couple years but today I learned that it was coming down on the 8th of next month and so I went by there today on the way home from school since time is running out (March 26 right now as I type this) so I have a couple weeks still to save anything I want.  I plan to go back there soon with some basic tools to save a couple other lighting-related items and a few other items since I have many memories in said house and spent lots of time there.  I'd love to save a few old doors/windows (house was built in 1979 I'm told but was built with lots of reclaimed materials). and other things like the (beautiful) kitchen sink and some other light fixtures but I doubt I'll be able to save stuff like that. I'm glad I have the things I have already saved, though, if nothing else.
This is kinda like going to the (since demolished) house I used to live in (the one I talk about on here that was built in 1955 and had a ton of old wiring).
Oh, and ever hear the phrase, "Craigslist on the Curb" (obviously people who are moving or remodeling putting stuff out on the curb for free for the taking before taking it to the dump, etc.). Well I will call this, "ReStore on the Rebound"!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 29, 2013, 11:18:35 AM
Ooo sounds like you got some nice stuff! So far no news on any new finds for me though today or tomorrow i'll be trying my M-250A on the pole with the shorter arm. I'll see if it'll hold with the ballast and glass lens. if it doesn't cope with the glass lens I'll try the yellowed FP lens or the AEL lens. If not the light will come back in with me and I'll consider remote ballasting my friend's M-250R2 if his family lets me have it... surprisingly my mom is fine with me getting both the light and arm. :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 29, 2013, 11:27:48 AM
Cool! Remote-ballasting any light might help reduce weight...is it doing to be in dusk-to-dawn service or on a switch?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 29, 2013, 04:45:00 PM
well, it has a PC on it but it will plug into an outdoor outlet so it'll only be on when we have parties (and when i feel like going out to turn it on lol). it seems too hold well with the ballast and a plastic lens. Hopfully i can get the M-250R2 from my friend. i'll mount that on here instead with a plastic lens. The ballast on this light is the real weight to it. The pole was okay. then i installed the powr/door and the thing started leaning lol. I kept swapping around the lenses and  decided on the M-250R2 lens i had laying around.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 29, 2013, 11:19:25 PM
Eventually I would hardwire it to a switch inside the house if I were you...maybe the same switch as your 70w MH/100w MV deck light? But who am I to say that when my MV yard light is wired to a cord, then plugged into an extension cord, and has a shattered diffuser held together with Tvvek tape? :8)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 30, 2013, 01:59:51 PM
trust me, i'd love to but i've been told not to "screw around with the house's connections" many times lol. there's no easy way to hook it up to the same switch as the 70W MH light. it's jsut easier to plug it in.

I'll ask my parents if i can leave it plugged in 24/7 and just install an open cap (which does the opposite of a shorting cap) and install a PC when the light is in use. i can change the PC from the deck so i don't need a ladder. so it's actually easier than going to plug or unplug it. not sure if they'll let me though. they might say it's "unsafe" or they might stick with the impression that if it's plugged in, it's using electricity. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 30, 2013, 08:13:42 PM
Don't regular PCs use a little bit of power even when they've turned the light off during the daytime?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 30, 2013, 08:52:32 PM
when they turn off the light is the only time they're using power IIRC. for electronic PCs it's like 0.0001W.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 30, 2013, 08:59:21 PM
How much does a regular thermal relay time-delay PC draw?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 30, 2013, 09:33:41 PM
The Intermatic ones (http://www.intermatic.com/~/media/Intermatic/Documentation/Specifier%20Guide/053LC4500%20Series2pg.ashx) draw less than 1w apparently.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 30, 2013, 10:13:01 PM
those PCs would be much more sensitive if they had clear windows. >:(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 31, 2013, 12:15:49 PM
I agree...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 31, 2013, 09:30:15 PM
Okay, so you'll NEVER guess what i came accross! So my aunt and uncle just bought a new house. it's really gross as the previous owners really didn't keep up with it. But as for lights: FIVE two lamp reflector preheater lights! and one two lamper F20 preheater!!! WOW and i think they're giving me all of them when they remodel the basement! only one works right and only has one lamp. all the others are either totally unlit or disconnected. one has a pair of lamps that strobe badly and don;t stay lit. most lamps are sylvania lifelines.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 31, 2013, 10:14:18 PM
:o :o Cool! It seems your family tend to have a thing for finding vintage lights. :P If you get to keep them are you going to restore each light?

Anyway I would also like to see some pics of the lights too. If I come across a suitable reflector light, I might stick my preheat ballast in there and convert it to preheat. I'll probably also drill holes for the starter sockets too.

As for me, I went to Restore recently and picked up a extra mogul socket. I also got some parts at HD and added a backlight (like on the trains) for my subway map. It uses T5 lamps though as T12/T8 magnetic fixtures would have been too bulky. :P


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 31, 2013, 10:33:21 PM
yeah i was like "Holy $&!%!" There seem to be different versions too. Two of the F40 fixtures have both lamps and don't flicker or even hum to by knowledge. i think those two are disconnected. One has one good lamp and one missing lamp. One has both lamps and both lamps flicker and the starters go "ping ping ping" and the fixture acts as if the lamps are dead even though there's barely any blackening in the ends. The last F40 fixture has both lamps gone, one socket broken, and i have a bad feeling the ballast leaked as there's a dark atain on the reflector in the center about the size of a ballast. But the tar can't stain though sheet metal, can it? :-\ lastly, there's a two lamp F20T12 half piper/strip light. it doesn't appear to even be wired in. There's a cable coming from it but it goes into the wall and (i think) comes back out and the cable is cut clean.

I asked my uncle and aunt to please not throw out any of the lights. I told them that if they don't want them i'll gladly take them all and if they do want them i'll do wahtever it takes to get them working again. Since the lights are a tad rusty and worn, yeah all the ones that have good ballasts and wiring will be restored. Any bad ones will be restored afterwords if i can find decently priced replacement parts. i took pics with my mom's phone but some of the pics are really dark since the basement is pretty dim. There are four incandescent pull-chains in addition to the fluoros and they all work except one, which has a 13W CFL ironically. i'll get the pics up here ASAP. either tomorrow or later in the week depending on home work and such. It kinda bothers me to see the lights left neglected like that and it broke my heart to leave without the lights in the trunk lol.

that backlight sounds cool! can you post a pic? 8)


BTW, i went to my cousin's house and peeked in their grandma's garage. the T8 altos in the box are from April 2003 (D3) and do have the shield logo on them. the box is green and says "contractor's pack".


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on March 31, 2013, 10:59:54 PM
Ahh cool, looking forward to any updates you have regarding the lights. As for the one with the spot, tar shouldn't stain through metal so I guess it's one of those black spots you seen on old well used fluorescent fixtures. Usually they're over the sockets though. Oh and don't worry about any dead ballasts, a lot of preheat F20 and F40 parts are still plentiful on eBay.

PS I posted a pic of said backlight. :P


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 01, 2013, 04:07:43 PM
Ahh okay. it just alarmed me becuase it's right about where the ballast should be mounted. i did post some pics but by the time you read this you would've probably already seen them...

If the F20 fixture is bad, no prob. i have plenty of chokes but i really don't want to spend 25 bucks on a preheat ballast. maybe someone on the LG would have a spare ballast but I'd want full leads, no chopped up leads. anyways, i'll cross the ballast bridge when i come to it. what are the odds of them failing anyways? higher or lower than RS? they look rather neglected. :( >:(

i find it interesting how (i think) every fixture is different. I don't think there are two that are of the same design. i could be wrong though...

I may consider selling some of them. the ones with bad ballasts (if any have them) will be the first to go if i lack the heart to hang on to them. shipping a 50" or so box would be pricey though and I'm not sure how well our wondeful friends at the USPS will handle a box that large. :8) :P i know you want a F40 housing for your preheater ballast so tune into your PM since i have an offer for you. ;) ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 02, 2013, 11:10:31 AM
That's really cool! If I lived in the area I'd ask for one/buy it from you...unfortunately I'm simply too far away.
Good luck though! What sort of lamps are you putting in there when you're done?


Title: Reply: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 02, 2013, 05:15:38 PM
i don't know. i won't be the one removing them so it's up to whomever does the job. I suggested stripping out all the existing lighting circuts and running a new circut with two lamp f32t8 strip lights. that'd make the basement nice a bright and a new circut would make it much cleaner looking too since right now there's one JB light on a switch, three pull chain JB lights, a separate room with three fluorescent lights on two different circuts (one works with only one lamp) and then there's two more over a work bench on the other side. then there's a lonely F20T12 fixture over in the corner. the corner diagonally across from the F20 fixture over where the finished room is, is pitch dark with no light over there.

I figure 10 F32T8 fixtures would light up the basement fine but it's not up to me. my uncle did say the pull chains will be rewired to be controlled by one switch but said nothing about totally redoing the lighting though. i'm pretty sure they're getting rid of the fluorescents though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 02, 2013, 09:57:37 PM
Well, even if they keep them maybe you can relamp them?
Of course, I hope they eventually make their way into the hands of us collectors..


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 02, 2013, 10:49:36 PM
i don't think they're gonna keep them. if they were to i'd service them like they were my own, all of them getting fresh lamps and manual reset starters and fixing the broken socket on the fixture that has one.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 02, 2013, 11:07:25 PM
Yeah, I'd do the same. Hope you get them though!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 04, 2013, 11:11:21 PM
I'm in the process of converting one of my "Old-School" fixtures from 2-lamp to 3-lamp.  I'll post pics....
I also got another vintage GE Chroma 50 lamp, so now I have a pair to run in that fixture (which it's running).  Awesome color, albeit sorta dim though...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 05, 2013, 10:28:00 PM
nice! i'm going to the ReStore tomorrow so who knows what i'll find! I haven't had luck finding anything HID yet, but I've scored pretty well with fluorescents and incandescents. I'll bring my phone for pics too.

Also, I think I'm going to get that flush mount drywall troffer type light with the drop lens just for the good ballast and the drop lens. It's only $5 so there's no reason not to get it. I won't be keeping the fixture though since it's supposed to be installed recessed into a drywall ceiling and it'd look bad otherwise. it has a bonusline ballast so the ballast itself is well worth the $5.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 06, 2013, 01:49:43 PM
Cool! Get that Bonusline ballast for sure! Now you just need a nice pair of GE Mainlighters to run on that ballast!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 06, 2013, 08:53:34 PM
well, turns out the ballast is a dud. :( the donater obviously jsut wanted to get rid of the fixture as the restore says that people shouldn't donate non-functioning equippement. well, for five bucks i guess it's worth the eight sockets, the lens, and the ballast for display purposes...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 06, 2013, 09:18:12 PM
Ahh too bad, at least the parts are still worth five bucks though. Most places here sell sockets for $4 per two pack and at least you scored a coolish drop dish lens with it too.

I also went to Restore today, I got a new F32T8 wrap to replace the one in my room which had a broken diffuser, a MR-16 halogen adapter and a 4100K F21T5 to swap out the 3000K one behind my subway map.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 06, 2013, 10:08:19 PM
i was going to snoop through some other stuff but some lady was eyeing the three fixtures so i made my priorety to get the fixtures and leave lol. There were two LOA shoplites less the lamps too which i left alone lol. they were opened up so i got to look inside. nothing special lol. At the restore i opened up the two reflector strips i bought today and when i saw the green universal label i was like like yep! mine! ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 07, 2013, 12:03:50 PM
Yeah, I probably would have went back in after buying the fixtures and putting them in the trunk just to check the ballast and lamp bins for any goodies.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 07, 2013, 01:40:24 PM
Yeah, when I helped remove the two fixtures from my school and saw the Universal Therm-O-Matic and Advance Kool-Koil ballasts I went totally Gull on those lights...
You could always go back for the LOA shoplights...they would be good fixtures to trade for vintage preheat and rapid start lights...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 07, 2013, 03:36:22 PM
they don'e sell spare ballast at my restore. i did look quickly at the lamp bin and there was nothing special besides the 3500K philips lamp i bought.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 07, 2013, 08:30:09 PM
Ahh, some Restores here have a bin of ballasts with loose ballasts they got or from damaged fixtures they scrapped. Some don't have the bin and keep the ballasts in the bin with the wiring devices.

The Restore I went to yesterday didn't have a ballast bin though. They have some interesting Duro Test stuff, and some odd length HO lamps.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 07, 2013, 09:38:58 PM
Yeah my ReStore doesn't have too much when it comes to spare lighting parts. normally when i want a part like a ballast or even just sockets, I'll buy a whole fixture and junk what i don't want. usually the fixtures are so affordable it's still cheaper than buying the small parts at the bigger stores. i thought they had wire-on plugs but they don't... their fluorescent stuff is pretty cheap always but the incandescent fixtures are pretty pricey IMO. usually 20-50 bucks. i was going to get pics too buy my phone conveniently died on me. >:( :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 07, 2013, 10:05:08 PM
Ahh, I noticed fluorescent fixtures selling at the 5 to 20 range over here, ballasts are usually 5 to 10, sockets are usually 1-2.
Incandescent and halogen fixtures can vary from 5 to 50. Fluorescent lamps are usually 1-2 and incandescent can range from 50 cents to 2 per pack.

As for HID, the lamps are usually 5 bucks, ballasts 10-15, and fixtures 10-30.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 08, 2013, 12:02:34 AM
Cool, did you get the Duro-Test stuff?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 08, 2013, 03:22:59 PM
ahh here the shorter fluorescent tubes (I've never seen anything over 2ft for sale) and loose incandescents are always 25 cents a piece while lamps in boxes are usually from 50 cents to 5 bucks depending on the lamp count.

 Here's my ReStore.  (http://www.bing.com/maps/?v=2&cp=qx69cr90xn5z&lvl=19.8&dir=358.76&sty=b&form=LMLTCC) it's the two story white building.

 here's the streetview of it.  (https://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ll=41.442008,-71.63161&spn=0.000546,0.001321&t=h&z=20&layer=c&cbll=41.441922,-71.631801&panoid=P0yGEmttdE7aKvx6Bfbvmw&cbp=12,79.79,,0,-3.29)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 08, 2013, 08:14:30 PM
Cool, is the store on both floors of the building?
How often do you schedule trips to the ReStore?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 08, 2013, 09:23:00 PM
Interesting, never seen a Restore like that before. There's quite a few of Restores in my area. and I usually go there about once every two or three weeks.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 08, 2013, 09:38:48 PM
yep, the restore is both floors plus the basement. so three floors in all. they sell kitchen appliances, toilets and sinks, furniture, antiques, lighting and electrical, tools, paint (not spray paint though) lumber, and hardware too like door knobs, bolts, handles, hinges, etc.

I go about every-other month. I'd liek to go more often but i'm usually pretty busy plus i don't want to bug my parents too much. usually on vacations I go so maybe towards the end of next week I'll go again since I'll be off for the week. gotta get crackin on the world history project though if i don't want to take the course again next year though... :( I'll probably get more 13W PL adapters. other than that, unless they get new stuff, I've bought pretty much everything of interest lol.

btw, i reported a dim M-250A2 100W MV FCO and it got fixed! it seems the lineman broke the flat glass though as there is a cooper OVZ lens in it. The OVZ lens looks REALLY COOL in the M-250A2. I'll have to get a pic!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 10, 2013, 09:19:06 PM
They're tearing down the house I saved my Sears shoplight and a few other lighting goodies from by hand and I scored some free used building materials...ReStore/craigslist right on the curb! Old windows (which will become cold frames) good 2X4s, tongue&groove paneling, etc.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 12, 2013, 02:57:09 PM
UGHHH! this is one of those days i wish i never got out of bed. :( Man i feel like an idiot, an a-hole, a feak, whatever! ugh well i have a week to sleep it off and think it though...


Anyways, in response to what you posted Andy, sounds like there's a lot of cool stuff in that house (well, used to be part of the house...) Lots of stuff can be salvaged and reused from other people's remodels and demolitions. Some stuff just needs to be saved before the construction beins though like lamps and light fixtures since usually the fixtures are left mounted when buildings are torn down and even mercury containing lamps! definetly not safe! most of the time fixtures are simply delamped though and maybe ballast torn out if it contains PCBs.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 12, 2013, 08:27:13 PM
Haha today I was there again and found a broken CFL :lol:
Yeah, I helped today and we got (in maybe an hour tops?) almost the whole first floor knocked down (interior walls and upper floor already removed;) kicking walls over was easy! There was a bay window that was a PITA to tear out, though...and amazingly no windows broke in the process and when we tried to break one it resisted us for awhile, even with a MONSTER crowbar thing.
LOTS of ugly wallpaper, linouleum, rigid foam insulation, and particleboard (NOT OSB) came out of there! In three days, a two-story, 4 bedroom house is down to floor level.
I spent quite a bit of time in this house, and it was ironic that I was swinging a sledgehammer on the walls of the room I probably spent the most time in.
LOTS of lumber is being salvaged though...although probably 90% went on a bonfire (it's so wet here that backyard burning isn't a problem).
Do you want to see pics? I can post some...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 13, 2013, 11:23:51 PM
nice! sure pics are always cool! yout can either post them here or link to them if you posted them elsewhere. 8)

I'm going to try and go back to the ReStore sometime this week. We'll see... I don't know if i'll have time. i am on vacation this week though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 14, 2013, 12:38:30 AM
Well, I went to Restore on Saturday again, all my finds are posted in the gallery except for a couple of 1/2" conduit stubs I also got.

Found some old F40 and 110W HO ballasts too, didn't buy them though since I have a lot in storage.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 14, 2013, 11:09:42 AM
Ooo some nice finds! Can you post a pic of a vintage (40s-60s) two lamp F96 HO ballast? I'm curious as to how large the ballasts in my grandpa's HO lights are. about the size of a T17 ballast? I was blown away by the size of that thing when i opened it up in 6th-7th grade. :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 14, 2013, 11:55:52 AM
LOL I bet they're huge!
I'm restoring my Sears shoplight after helping tear down the house it came out of.  So far I've sanded down the reflector.  How do you date GE Bonusline ballasts? I took it out and peeked at the underside but can't seem to find a stamped date code like Universal and Advance ballasts have...is it somewhere else, possibly buried under tar? I'll post a pic sometime...
It's going to be spraypainted (any advice Mike?) with gloss white enamel and it's getting new sockets.  I'm seriously considering also retiring the old GE Bonusline ballast and putting in something that hasn't leaked tar (and probably PCBs).  It's currently back in the fixture and while handling it I wore rubber gloves.
Any ideas on how to magically dissolve the tar/PCB drip on the inside of the reflector? The garden hose nozzle didn't go it; even up close.  Pressure washer time?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 14, 2013, 12:39:33 PM
My bonusline ballasts had the date code stamped with ink on the left-hand side of the label.

My advice is ONLY sand the rusted spots and right along the areas where the paint is chipping. The rest of the area just scrub it really well with steel wool or do a wet sand with VERY fine sand paper (just sand it with sand paper soaked on water). That way you don't need to use primer since you saved the paint underneath. I sanded my RS reflector light down and you can see the sanded texture though the paint whereas with the preheat industrial i used steel wool and the result is factory. With flourescents or indoor fixtures i don't use primer since i don't see the need for it but with outdoor fixtures such as signals, street lights, etc, i always would use primer since the paint will be exposed to the elements.

If the tar inside the fixture is hard as a rock then there's no harmful amount of PCBs present. If that's the case, just sand the tar right off lol. Thats what i'd do. If it's gooey it may have PCBs according to Dave but my bonusline ballast has gooey tar and it was marked NO PCBs so i don't know...

If there is PCBs, you really shouldn't hand onto the fixture, but i suppose if you do just prime it and give it several coats of paint. Another way to get the tar off is to heat it up with some sort of cigarette or candle lighter and then scrape off most of it with a butter knife you don't mind loosing and then sand the rest down wearing rubber gloves. This will work if the tar is hard too and will be easier than simply sanding it all down.

The last tip is HAVE FUN! Yes, cheesey lol, but what's the point of restoring it if you don't enjoy it? ;D


BTW, today i addicentally dropped the two ALTO II lamps for the fixture i made IS. I thought for sure the lamps were toast (the paper end covers were on the lamps) and there's some loose stuff inside the lamps moving around so i tested the lamps and they work! Wow these things are a little toucher than i thought lol. I think the Alto T8s are actually pretty good from my little expericene with them. The GE EcoLuxes blacken too fast on IS ballasts IMO.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 14, 2013, 12:51:41 PM
You might want to try using a heat gun and some acetone on the tar. Keep the acetone away from plastic though...

Some Bonusline ballasts have a two letter code stamped on the flange.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 15, 2013, 06:43:16 PM
well, the 70wHPS M-250R2 with the deep glass lens i was talking about was fixed! not replaced! It has a new dark colored PC instead of the original light gray FP PC. i haven't seen it at night yet... the original lamp in it had began to cycle a couple weeks ago.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 16, 2013, 11:20:44 AM
I ended up hitting it with the garden hose to get all the sawdust off (spent years in a woodshop) then let it dry overnight outside, then lightly sanded it with steel wool, then hosed it off again.  The blob of tar seems sticky; bits of paint and dirt stuck to it but it could just have been because it was wet. I did try holding the nozzle up close for a few seconds though.
Would a propane torch (held like a foot away) soften the tar? If I had one I'd try a heat gun or a hair dryer.
Acetone might work, what about paint/lacquer thinner?
Even my Dad suggested that steel wool would be sufficient.  There ARE a few bare spots though, but not enough to call for primer IMO.
I've also heard that wet, sticky tar is likely to be leeched with PCBs.
Yeah, the GE Ecolux lamps backen quickly but still work, wheras the Sylvania Octron ones don't last well in frequently-switched areas. Do the Altos blacken a lot or just before they die?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 16, 2013, 12:55:17 PM
The Altos blacken less than the GE EcoLuxes. The Eco luxes blackened after the first switching lol. The altos in the fixture i'm hanging in my grandpa's shop's bathroom haven't blackened yet, but i've only used them a couple times to test them and just run them a little bit since i've never had a 4ft T8 fixture before.

i haven't ever had to deal with tar leaking onto a fixture. I have no clue what acetone is but if it's corrosive in nature then it'll probably work. I'd get a sharp knife or a small saw or other type of blade and try to cut the tar off but since it could be PCB infested i'd stat away from that suggestion. I suppose a torch would work as logn as you don't have one hot enough to deform the metal lol. Also, if the tar gets too hot it'll just run down the fixture like honey or pancake syrup so be sure you don't let the tar go everywhere.


Well, I decided against keeping the four lamp troffer type fixture. I just didn't want it anymore. Of course i took anything salvagable out of it. I need to make room for the fixtures from my aunt and uncle's house and also any cases of lamps that i may buy this sunday when i go to  this place  (http://providence.craigslist.org/gms/3739295014.html) right near my house. when i read that there was "tons of Florescent light bulbs in just about every size (no 8 footers)" i had to plan on going lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 17, 2013, 09:29:41 PM
I would've converted it to T8 and put it at your Grandpa's shop or something...
Yeah, you're right about the torch thing...I'm considering just spraypainting over the tar.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 17, 2013, 10:58:19 PM
as long as it's not visable that's an option too... Id attempt removing the tar though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 18, 2013, 01:35:59 AM
Well, acetone is pretty corrosive since it dissolves polycarbonate and other plastics so I guess it should dissolve the tar (and some of the paint) off the fixture. Wear some rubber gloves before using it though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 18, 2013, 10:57:54 AM
Yeah, acetone is nasty! IMO not as bad as muriatic acid...THAT stuff is NASTY!
But I might try removing the tar, but if it doesn't want to come off, since it isn't visible I think I'll just sprypaint over it.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 19, 2013, 10:15:41 AM
BTw, it has been confirmed: I'm getting all six lights and the tubes from my aunt and uncle. :D And that nice stained glass lamp too. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 19, 2013, 08:59:12 PM
Congrats!!! ;D
Get some pics please! Are you the one who will remove them or someone else? Of have you or somebody else removed them already?
My Sears shoplight restoration project is still going on, but today I put the light back together, stuck a pair of Sylvania /CWP lamps in there and hung it in my garage over a chest freezer.  It's still going to be painted and get new tombstones, and I'm seriously considering changing the ballast.  With all the dirt and crud on the reflector gone (the top of the fixture is still pretty dirty) it's much brighter and nicer-looking.  Even with scratch marks in the reflector from sanding it with steel wool and other prep work, it's actually slightly shiny; the tubes reflect off it a bit when lit! Still going to be painted and completely rewired eventually though.
Do you guys think it's really necessary to paint the inside of the ballast channel?
The /CWP lamps do flicker at startup but that goes away after a couple minutes with that full power Bonusline ballast behind them. I do daresay the /CWP lamps do have a nice color though, but still not as nice as GE Chroma 50...the light is slightly warm/pinkish though sorta like /CWX (which I don't think I've ever really seen in person, just in pics on LG/GOL) but without the dimness of "Deluxe" lamps.  Once warmed up, on this ballast, they're  BRIGHT! The light is in a location where it only gets a few starts a day and runs for hours at a time, so the warmup issue with the /CWP lamps isn't an issue...so I think I'll keep them there for now.
Eventually, unless I can find a magnetic T12 ballast or maybe an electronic one, it'll probably be T8 instant start when I retire the old ballast.  Although, programmed-start or (my second choice) electronic rapid start would be the way to go with a T8 conversion IMO...
Nice thing about most (well electronic IS anyway) T8 ballasts is that T12s will work on them well so if I so choose I can still run T12s in there for the authentic look in a 1970s-era fixture.  In that case, (until they're spent) the GE 34w Watt-Misers the light came with when I got it will probably go right back in! (cleaned up of course; they're FILTHY as was the rest of the light when I got it in November of 2012.
Any advice from you guys?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 19, 2013, 11:18:21 PM
Not much over this week as it's finals, but did manage to squeeze in one Restore trip. Restore didn't have anything interesting though.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 21, 2013, 04:56:48 PM
Thanks! i don't know, but i hope to be the one to remove them! It'll more than likely be my uncle who removes them. they're still up as of now. they will probably stay up until they actually move in. They're hoping by June they'll be in the house. I didn't ask when the lights were coming down since i didn't want to come off sounding selfish. I'll get them by the end of the summer hopefully... and i already posted pics of them and you saw them. :P ;D

I guess you don't have to repaint the inside, though i usually repaint everything on my lights, mainly to get rid of the smell of the place it was in before. For a light to look like new, it has to smell like new too IMO. 8) Plus I tend to be a germ freak so repainting lights is like my way disinfecting them from anything the previous place may have had lol.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 21, 2013, 06:42:27 PM
I usually don't repaint my lights but I do clean them with rubbing alcohol to get rid of any stains and some of the smells.

For dirtier stuff a nice scrubbing down in the tub will help too but make sure to take out any wires, ballasts and sockets and to dry the fixture immediately with paper towels to avoid rusting. I usually only scrub stuff that's been outdoors like streetlights and traffic signals though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 21, 2013, 08:49:18 PM
My parents would kill me if i used the bath tub, or as Niall did for some refractors, the dish washer. lol

BTW, my iPod nano from 2009 went through the washer and dryer today. >:( :o :'( >:( :( :'( I'm surprised the thing is in one piece but nope, it won't even turn on. :( time for a new ipod then i guess... I want to get a nano though. don't like touch screens lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 21, 2013, 09:23:48 PM
Ever heard of the rice trick with wet electronics?
Yeah, touch screens can sometimes be annoying. 
My 64 gig iPod touch died from being submerged for too long, it came on afterward but died later that day.  It had beed submerged multiple times before though!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 21, 2013, 10:07:07 PM
yep. i think maybe the battery overheated from being in the dryer for an hour. that's if the washer machine didn't take it out. Man i didn't realize how expensive they are! Mine is a 5th generation black nano with a black rotary clicker. my friend seems to have luck getting used stuff (where he gets it i'm not sure, nor am i sure i want to know...) so i may be able to get one off him pretty cheaply...


also, i had reported a whole street for having dimmed out lamps in 100W M-250A2 FCOs and much to my dismay, THEY ARE ALL HPS NOW!!! NOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! I don't get it! It's really hit or miss with the mercs! That same street had one of the M-250A2s replaced a year ago out of the blue. it worked and everything. I guess i should be very careful with which mercs i report then... I just reported a bunch before i found out too so i hope they're alright... :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 21, 2013, 11:46:49 PM
LOL oops...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 21, 2013, 11:51:48 PM
The rice trick works sorta fine, you might want to try it again after 24 hours though. You basically stick the iPod in a box of rice for 12 or more. The rice absorbs the water like the silica do not eat packets in electronics. And yeah new iPods are pretty expensive. I think the new iPod nanos have a touch screen though.

I'm guessing Ngrid might have started replacing mercs straight out if they replaced all of them, I would keep an eye on the ones you reported as well as the ones left.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 22, 2013, 05:58:53 PM
I'm in luck! My friend is associated with some sort of electronics repair shop (don't know if it's family owned or he know a guy) and is fixing it for only 30 bucks! He said there's no garentee he can though and will refund me if he can't...


UPDATE: in the mean time, i transferred about 20 songs onto my phone for now. i have 274 songs though and each one has to be transferred individually so I won't be transferring all the songs lol. I just need enough for the bus ride with no repeats for a few days lol. You figure 6-8 songs a day (3 or 4 to school and another 3 or 4 back home). i decided to tinker around with my phone and much to my satisfaction (and surprise!) i can copy the songs off my computer onto my phone!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on April 28, 2013, 12:27:17 PM
Found some pretty neat stuff yesterday, see my recent uploads for pics (which have gotten pushed off the front page)  :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 28, 2013, 02:08:25 PM
went to battleship cove again and got some pics of some of the really cool lights there plus scored a GE COMPAX.

also, the mercs i had reported after the three that were replaced got relamped so i don't knwo what's going on here... maybe only some lineman have lamps and they're just leftover stock? I sure hope not!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 28, 2013, 08:29:23 PM
Cool, a COMPAX lamp?
I counted (was it you Mike who asked me somewhere?) and I have about 3-dozen Mainlighters.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 28, 2013, 09:54:35 PM
yep i asked. wow so 36 lamps eh? About the same as my thirty WW F20s and not too big an age difference either. I think mine are from the mid 80s and yours are late 70s?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 28, 2013, 10:01:26 PM
Some of them are from May of 1979 and made at the Jackson, MS plant according to Dave Silverliner.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 30, 2013, 03:49:07 PM
Oh cool! if there's any plus side to these /WW lamps we both have it's that they're full mercury, full wattage, and they weren't full price lol. I think someone dated my lamps to 1985 or 86. I love the fact that they were made with the older lifeline style endcaps too from the 70s.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 30, 2013, 08:25:25 PM
LOL GE's endcaps haven't changed much over the years...
Mine were FREE! (only cost was they were a PITA to transport over several months) Even better! LOL but yours were pretty cheap too!
Oh and (gasp, barf, gag) I picked up 3 34w black-etch GE 34w Watt-Misers yesterday.  Haven't tested them yet...I know, I know, but they were free, probably work, and they're fine in warm environments on energy-saver ballasts...If I had to buy lamps and pay for them I would get full-wattage ones of course, though...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 30, 2013, 09:53:57 PM
yes, free makes everything better! lol

yeah the 34W lamps will be good to use to relamp a friend's light or a relatives light lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 02, 2013, 11:20:45 AM
Yeah that's what I was thinking...as long as it has a ballast rated for them...
I know of quite a few more of those 1970s Sears shoplights, someday I plan to try to get them! Maybe they all have perfect GE Bonusline ballasts!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 02, 2013, 03:17:49 PM
Maybe! It's always good to find identical copies of lights since you can take the best parts from every fixture and put them together lol. That's what i plan to do with the preheaters in my cousin's grandma's garage if i can get them. I'll probably replace all the sockets though since they're all mismatched (yet it seems like it was done at the factory since with every fixture, the end with the pull-chain has Y-slots and the other end has doughnuts or the otherway around) and brittle too. One of the fixture when i was relamping it the new lamp wouldn't stay in since the contacts in the socket are corroding but i got it to stay and the lamp hasn't fallen out yet and still makes contact. Crazy me welded parts of a paper clip onto the pins of one lamp to make it longer so it's keep contact lol. If it does fall it's not like there isn't probably all sorts of dangerous stuff stowed away in there anyways lol. A little mercury never hurt anyone right? :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 02, 2013, 08:49:14 PM
Worst case scenario you'll have to call McCann Lighting and their friendly, knowledgeable sales representative/serviceman will come out and install a new pair of sockets, and a new 4100K GE Ecolux lamp free of charge...LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 02, 2013, 10:54:29 PM
 ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on May 03, 2013, 01:07:45 AM
Recent Restore finds: :P

2 x F54T5/HO fixtures with Sylvania programmed start ballasts and 4100K lamps
Lithonia F40T12 strip with Advance Mark III ballast
3 x Sylvania Lifeline XL F40T12/WWX
Cooper FC8T9 circline fixture with Cooper branded rapid start ballast
2 x Westinghouse Canada F20T12/CW
2 x 116w Traffic signal bulbs, one GE and one Sylvania got them to complete a set of three lamps.

Pics of the first three are in my gallery and I'll be posting a pic of the Westy F20 soon, not sure if I'm going to post a pic of the Cooper circline fixture or the incandescents though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 03, 2013, 11:18:45 AM
Cool, I need to get to a ReStore someday...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 03, 2013, 05:22:08 PM
remember that dead end street with the four M-250A2 FCO 100W mercs i mention that got all the lights replaced with HPS? Well, the first one was replaced with 50W HPS last year about a year ago. then i reported the other three for being dim, and they got replaced. But they used 100W HPS as replacements! So the first light is 50W and the other three are 100W lol. I'm glad they used 100w as a replacement though since it's brighter. but 100W every pole on a dead end street is a bit of an overkill lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 10, 2013, 11:27:50 AM
I was talking to someone yesterday who remembers Norelco florescents! So we talked for quite awhile about T12 florescents and MV! I did my best to explain the Champion Lamp Works >ITT>Norelco>Philips evolution,  and also explained the Westinghouse>Philips thing.  They told me where they used to live, their local electrical Co-op would install MV yardlights for free, and they still have theirs!
I also talked to someone recently who used to live in my house (I sleep in their childhood bedroom) and is also an electrician!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 10, 2013, 04:22:41 PM
Well, today i found out the M-250R1 isn't for sale yet, the seller wants to research it first. I told them that since the lens is missing, it's the least efficient HID lamp source, and the instructions are missing the light will be worth less. I offered 40 bucks or 50 if shipping is less than 20 bucks.

btw, why is Ian's username all screwy?  :-\


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on May 10, 2013, 08:35:27 PM
Hmm, I would put in an offer of around 50 too. My gumball was around the same but since it's used and the M-250R1 is new I'd say it's worth around 50. If the refractor was still intact and the instructions were intact I'd say 100 is reasonable. You could also mention that a new refractor will cost around $30-40 too.

As for Ian's name, I'm not sure but I guess he substituted some other alphabet (like Cyrillic) for some letters. :P 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 10, 2013, 09:36:30 PM
one thing i didn't consider was that she may have the refractor and might not have included it in the pics since when GE boxes their lights, the refractors aren't installed. That's how my M-400 was. that means she may charge me more than 50. :( :(

what she had said:

Hello ..not yet for sale as i need to research it a bit. I know it will not be near $17.50 though. But, If you would like to make an offer please do and i will do my best for you.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 11, 2013, 12:43:25 AM
Good luck anyway...
I had a dream recently that I saw some GE EcoLux lamps with PINK etches! LOL!
I'm looking forward to summer and the lighting treasures it might bring...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 11, 2013, 09:08:35 AM
pink etches eh? They make then with blue for the reveals...

okay, she said she'll list it today so i'll be watching it ready to jump when it goes up lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 11, 2013, 02:36:42 PM
Yeah, it was certainly strange...
Idea: different color etches for different color temps (Like yellow for 2700K triphosphor, pink for halophosphate 3000K warm white, some other color for 3500K, green for cool white, blue for daylight, etc.)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 11, 2013, 04:27:24 PM
LOL i just like the classic black etches and blackenders. :P i'm not a fan of the green etches or green endcaps. i like the color green but green means eco and eco means crap lol. the M-250R1 still isn't listed... the seller said they'd list it today. It's only 4:30 though so the day's not over yet... they're in the same time zone as me (in Pennsylvania). hopefully she thinks my 50 dollar offer is reasonable and hopefully shipping isn't an arm and a leg... without the refractor the light will definetly be lighter... My M-400 was 50 bucks to ship from SC to me and it was twice the size, weight, and distance to travel so shipping should be about 20 bucks if the seller is a decent packer and doesn't need a fridge box to ship it lol. 70 bucks is really steep for me but i have some birthday money...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 11, 2013, 07:58:08 PM
LOL @ fridge box! That'd be a lot of bubble wrap and newspaper in there...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 11, 2013, 08:34:47 PM
you never know! lol

on the contrary though, reading the feedback about the seller she's not the world's best packer and can be a PITA sometimes. She still has 97% positive feedback which is good enough for me... even if the light goes up on the bay i can't get it until tomorrow since my mom is out tonight with friends and she needs to buy it with her credit card. my dad's not technology savy enough to do the ebay transaction lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on May 13, 2013, 01:55:50 AM
Ahh, let us know if the seller gets back to you on the light. I guess I'm lucky since I have a credit card so I can go on eBay by myself.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 13, 2013, 06:22:12 AM
As of 6:22AM, still not yet. lol i'll check when i come home this afternoon...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 14, 2013, 12:09:09 AM
I fired up a 400w Sylvania Metalarc today. and cleaned up another one of my three 400w MH highbays. 
I'm torn between the 400w Philips and 400w Sylvania lamps...both appear to be of very good quality and should last a long time, especially in only occasional service...
Of course I really need to get a 400w Westy Lifeguard /W cleartop!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 14, 2013, 05:42:01 PM
Eh I like Sylvania lamps ince they still use BT lamps for the MH. i wish they'd use BT glasses for the -28 and -37 sized MV lamps. I wish they still used the BT25 shape too but the ET23.5 shape they do use is still more interesting than ED23.5...

I don't know... a westie would look so misplaced in a highbay lol. you need an OV-25 or an OV-20 for it to go in! ;D sorry though, i can't help you on that. If i had a bucket truck and permission from the electric company I'd get you all the silverliners left here. There's an OV-400 for sale on ebay but it's a pretty penny (like $85) and that's not even counting shipping. plus it's missing the lens and looks pretty well-used though the paint looks good and it's 120V.


BTW, i found out the reason some of the lights in my aunt and uncle's house didn't work WAS due to a wiring issue. after my uncle ripped out the makeshift drop ceiling in that third of the basement so the elecrician could inspect all the wiring, they found (i think) a bad nuetral line and the wall switch was shot. That still doesn't mean all the lights work, but i have no reason to doubt their functionality. The lamps are probably all EOL for the most part though and if they are, i'll try them on RS. If they work at least on RS, i'll keep them. if not, to the recycling center...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on May 15, 2013, 11:02:44 PM
IIRC, Sylvania kept the BT-28 and BT-37 merc shape until they started outsourcing them in the early 2000s. I think the 100 watters went to ED recently too when they started outsourcing them.  :8)

I have some 400w Westy lamps but they look a bit odd in my highbay, maybe I'll swap the ballast with my B2255 so the B2255 is 400w and the highbay is 250w. It's still odd since it's a Westy but at least my NOS Sylvania /DX cleartop won't look weird in it. And plus I think 400w lamps are too much for the cheapo bucket I stuck on the highbay.  ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 17, 2013, 12:20:37 AM
IDK how old mine are but yeah a Westy Lifeguard or GE Bonusline or Sylvania Banner would me a little out of place...but many of the fixtures in my house have lamps older than they are...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 21, 2013, 11:27:18 AM
I found a cool white GE Mainlighter yesterday! Also some more warm white ones and some other lamps...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 31, 2013, 06:40:38 PM
I went with someone to check a friend's seasonal home before they came back today.  The woodshop is  full of old rapid start F40 fixtures, at least three of which are those old Sears shoplights like the two I have! There wasn't any electrical power at the time (no generator running; house is off-grid) so I couldn't see them light up though.  I saw some GE Watt-Misers that probably shouldn't be there though.
None of the lamps looked super vintage; some older (likely 90s) Sylvania Design 50s, GE post-EPACT Watt-Misers, a 40w Westpointe, etc.  Some of the etches were hidden though they way the lamps were installed.
Three are Sears shoplights, there's one other shoplight-type light, and a couple old vaportight-looking fixtures (with no lamps, ballast cover or lens) sporting .80 amp Advance Kool-Koil ballasts.  They weren't there last time I was in there though so they must be good, working fixtures and not dead ones, just needing lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 14, 2013, 03:26:43 PM
I'm getting the first light from my aunt and uncles basement this sunday. it's the one with the broken socket and no lamps. It will be repainted and shipped up to Joe this summer. the rest of them are still up.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 15, 2013, 04:35:00 PM
Cool!
I went to some yard sales today and got some interesting lighting-related bits including Christmas lights, a couple nightlights (one with a vintage top-etch ceramic white GE 7w 115-125v bulb) and a 2-pack of NOS (OLD) GE FS-2 starters.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on June 15, 2013, 11:19:47 PM
Went to Restore today and picked up a RAB 70w CMH tallpack with glass refractor and some Durotest 40w AT-19 frosted long life bulbs.
The wallpack came with a 70w Philips clear 4000K CMH and is used from 2008 while the bulbs are NOS.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 15, 2013, 11:50:44 PM
Cool scores!
I also collect glass insulators! Anyone here interested in those too?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on June 16, 2013, 01:14:05 AM
Pics are up on LG (http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/index.php?cat=10364) if anyone wants to see them.

Don't really collect insulators but I do have around 6 of them lying around.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 16, 2013, 09:52:25 PM
Cool, what brands/models? (I.e Hemingray 42)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 17, 2013, 05:36:10 PM
okay. repainted the light today. Will post pics on the Lg tomorrow and link them to the forum. i'm going to make a run to lowe's tonight to get some replacement hardware for the light since the screws have surface rust and i almost sripped one completly tring to remove it lol. the paint is smooth and glossy but the paint underneath was peeling and you can see the peel line underneath the new paint. i guess it's an alright job though. it's the outerside of the reflector. the top of the ballast channel is a little rough from rust spots that i thought would disappear (but didn't) but when it's mounted it's not like you can tell... I'll have to pay more attention to detail next time. I blew through all my paint repainting it too O_O I didn't know how much paint i was gonna go though. anyways, the paint is SUPER glossy and i don't know why. i like it though! it's really glossy like glass almost... it's still outside drying. It's dry to the touch but once the sun goes down i'll take it inside and leave it in the basement. then tomorrow when i come home after my algebra exam (ends at 9:30AM) i'll come home, take a pic, assemble it, get another pic, light it up, get another pic, and maybe replace the single lamp industrial with this one (and of course, get another pic lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 17, 2013, 06:46:26 PM
Sounds like McCann Lighting does quick restorations to derelict fixtures!
What will you use for lamps? Will they be included when you send it on to Joseph?


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on June 18, 2013, 02:34:07 PM
this one's not going to Joe. There was a misunderstanding with my and my aunt. it's the one that was mounted next thi this one that is going to joe since it's a little more compact (check the front page in the gallery, i commented on the light i restored). this one has the deepest/tallest reflector out of all of them and apparently has a rare long john style ballast. i'll post pics on LG. The paint job i did wasn't the best becuase i didn't really sand it down and get all the peeling paint off and file down the rusty spots all the way. gives the fixture character though...

i decided to replace the single lamp industrial with this one to get more light. I used the same lamp and the other twin that came in the package with it that was previously unused (the GE F40T12 Ecolux spec 3500 lamps)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 18, 2013, 11:16:13 PM
Well, cool nonetheless! Can you post some pics on LG? I'm wondering what this light looks like in a non-grainy, dimly-lit pic...
Today I went to my godparents' house...they have an oldish-looking (80s?) Regent yardlight on their shed (the ones with the lamp in at an angle).  It's pretty dirty and has two wasp nests in there.  (it's hardly ever used; I fired it up for a few seconds which could be the first time since I turned it on several years ago!) The cool part? It has a Westy /DX Lifeguard lamp! I hope to get this light someday.  I don't think the Lifeguard lamp is original; most likely it came NOS or used from somewhere else, but it's still a gem IMO...The ballast is somewhat noisy upon startup (I lit it for only a few seconds so IDK how loud at full brightness but as of 2 years ago the lamp was still quite bright (I lit it at night that time and let it warm up fully)
There is also a (250w HPS) GE cobrahead there that was given to them.  We opened it up...I'm streetlight-ignorant but there's two transformer-looking things (coils of copper wire), a capacitor, and a circuit board I presume is the ignitor? It has no lamp and the tag inside the fixture is unreadable...I GUESS it could be 250w MV but I doubt it. Man the Powr/Door on that thing is HEAVY!!! They asked me if I wanted it but I declined for the moment (no space for it) though I'm sure it isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
Also the outbuilding/shop we opened it up in (it sat outside upside-down for years) is lit by nine F96T12 2-lamp slimline fixtures! They have post-EPACT, pre-Ecolux 60w cool white GE Watt-Misers (which are likely original!) Problem is...two (on the same switch) buzz but don't light.  The lamps flash when you flick the switch on and off but that's it.  Weird...we tried swapping lamps and still no luck. Any ideas? Also another light only lights one lamp, at about 2/3 brightness. It's a replacement for the original Mororola Lumi-Kon ballasts these lights have...could it be bad right out of the box?


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on June 19, 2013, 03:32:39 PM
What model was it? does it look like any of the GE lights in my gallery? What size was it? You said it was 250W HPs but then you said you didn't know... ??? If there's a colored sticker on the outside of the door that will tell you the wattage. just add a zero unless it's a "3" or "17" (in that case add a 5 to the end to make 35 and 175) and "X1", which is 1000W.

If the ballast has two coils with a capacitor then it's CWA i think... one coil is typically larger than the other. can you get a pic and email it to me or link it here? I'm intrigued by it now and want to know which model it is. You should get into street lighting if you liek insulators and fluorescent lights and MV lamps. I'm guessing there are no street lights in your area off grid though. Street lights can be a pain to store since they take up a lot of room, which is why I prefer to collect smaller lights, so i can have more of them lol. Same with fluorescents but it seems it's easier to come across vintage F40T12 fixtures. I'll be getting my first vintage preheat F20 fixture (hopefully) over the summer.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 19, 2013, 09:31:56 PM
I wanna say M400 but whatever it was it was like 2 or 3 feet long and HEAVY! I'll have to look in your gallery.
The 25 sticker is faded to silver so IDK if it's MV or HPS but judging by the circuit board I'm guessing is an HPS ignitor, it's HPS. I do know the NEMA tag system/how to read those.
It did have vents in the door and a solid glass refractor if that helps...I'm guessing M-400-something since it seems like a medium-sized lume.
Good luck on the F20 fixture!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 19, 2013, 10:18:45 PM
Yeap it's a 250W HPS M-400 from the 70s. if the ballast was on the door with the vents it's and M-400A. Definetly try to get it!

I'd love a HPS M-400 or any older HPS light. i think the first HPS lights are really cool for whatever reason lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 19, 2013, 11:29:19 PM
The ballast is mounted on the door.  The door alone must weigh fifty pounds! :o
Well I might be going back soon...possibly this time next week I'll have my first cobra! Were the M-400As ever made in MV?
I'm considering bypassing the ballast for now and wiring the socket to the mains, then getting a mogul>medium adpater and sticking in a household incandescent or a CFL so I can say, "Look! I have a working streetlight!" until I find a lamp, and plus IMO 250w HPS is too bright for my needs...unless I install it. I might convert it to 175w MV or something...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 20, 2013, 10:32:25 AM
Yep, it's a M-400A then. 8) Yep, they were made in mercury vapor and offered in MH too but i doubt there were ever any Mh ones sold since at the time MH wasn't really practicle. (really expensive and you'd be lucky to have a lamp make it over 10,000 hours). There should be a lable on the inside of the upper housing and there'e where all the info is like ballast type, voltage, watts, and the date code. The M-400, being HPS and having a NEMA tag, is from the mid 70s to whenever the M-400R2 and M-400A2 came out...

just to let you know, you can't convert a power door witout ruining it so i woudn't do it. My M-250A is the little brother to the M-400A and maybe they made the powr/doors a little more versitile later on, but with mine the plug is permanetly attached to the wires so the only way to change the ballast is to cut the plug off, strip the wires, and find another plug which ruins the originality of the light. Or course it is yours so you can do what ever you want. I'm jsut saying once you modify it in anyway that's it, no going back. the idea was that you'd buy a whole new door instead of trying to change the ballast yourself, yet another GE money making innovation. :8)

250W HPS is bright, but so is your 400W MH highbay. 250W HPS is dimmer than 400W MH. 250W HPS is about equal to 400W MV, which isn't that bright. My M-400 (same as the M-400A but with a top mounted ballast versus it on the door) is 400W MV and while it is bright, it's soothing (well, it's also a coated lamp and i don't light it often. When you try to get a lamp, try to get a coated lamp so it's less harsh on your eyes. My eyes are very sensitive to the light. I have to sometimes wear sunglasses on cloudy days and when it's sunny i squint even with sunglasses on so glare is something that bothers me, which is why i like coated mercs over clear.)

anyways, I'd personally leave it all original but obviously it's up to you. I hope you can get it! i'm guessing it didn't have a lamp when you opened it then? To open the refractor part, the bare metal bar in the front of the lightpulls out away from the fixture and the door will come down. It's a spring loaded latch. To close it, just puch the refractor door and top housing together and the latch will make a lound "snap" as it engages. Also, don't forget to put in a photocell when you try lighting it up. i forgot to do that when i tested my M-400 and I was all worried when it didn't light up lol. Then after 10 minutes i realized i never put in a PC lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 20, 2013, 08:58:08 PM
I know the "Plug" thingy you're describing...I'd remove all the internal wiring and redo it myself with a HX 175w MV area light ballast (if anything) and it's associated socket (which I may or may not have to remote-mount).  Most likely it would become MV if I found a ballast...since it isn't exactly easy to ship to Alaska LOL...if anything I'd gut my yardlight that's in rough shape (I know of another identical Electripak light I could get to replace my tired one). In that case I could bring the ballast, (lamp?) and (PC?) down to CA with me and install them in this light. If  not, the next solution (especially if the existing ballast doesn't work) is to stick in a mogul>medium adapter and a CFL... :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 22, 2013, 04:21:21 PM
I went yardsaling today and found a vintage GE flip-digit clock-radio.  Very 70s looking! It works quite well, too, with excellent radio reception (picks up otherwise weak stations clearly) and has a neon backlight for the clock part that doesn't flicker or anything!
I also scored a 2-pack of GE 15w bulbs at Goodwill...always wanted some of those and finally got some!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on June 23, 2013, 08:35:24 PM
Oh nice! I have a 70s plug-in GE analog clock. i like the older plug in ones since they have the smoothly sweeping hand instead of the tick-tock-tick-tock battery powered ones that drive me mad lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 23, 2013, 09:16:25 PM
Do you mean the ones where the second hand moves continuously instead of the ones that spring ahead each second? My old elementary school here in CA had those in all the classrooms.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on June 23, 2013, 10:33:37 PM
yeah the second hand constantly moves instead of stop go stop go. the clocks at your school are most likely synconized clocks. most schools have those since you can set all the clocks from one central location (generally in the main office). they still make them too but synconized clocks are WAYYY overprices like traffic signals and the associated gear.  the clocks run from 150-200 bucks each on average and some as much as 300 dollars- for ONE CLOCK! imagine a whole school full of them plus the main controller and all that wiring and labor? that's an asinine amount of money! my elementary and high schools both uses the square clock in the link.  (http://www.simplexgrinnellstore.com/products/time_solutions/wall_clocks/sync_wall_clocks)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 24, 2013, 12:29:41 AM
IDK why but to me electric clocks like those seem boring...I prefer digital or flip ones...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on June 24, 2013, 12:49:31 AM
This style (http://www.flickr.com/photos/joeclark/3219901129/lightbox/) looks pretty cool but they're getting pretty hard to find.

Another cool style of clock is the Nixie style (http://uncrate.com/stuff/nixie-tube-clock/).

My high school used to have those synchronized clocks but they were replaced with battery powered clocks in the 80s or so. I guess the system was too expensive for them to maintain. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 25, 2013, 10:40:14 PM
Ooooo nixie tubes! Those things are cool...
Mine is somewhat similar to that...but...I'll post a photo sometime.
Did you know such a thing as a nixie-tube calculator apparently exists?
This flip-clock is my oldest radio now...PS I might be getting a 1978 JVC tuner from my godparents! (It's transistors I'm sure) I really want a tube-powered FM tuner though...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on June 26, 2013, 01:07:10 AM
Yep they are, they probably did have calculators with nixie tubes back then.

Vacuum tube powered stuff is pretty cool but they're a bit expensive to buy new now.

Also what do you think of my new avatar :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 26, 2013, 09:53:12 AM
i think the fact that you wsitched your username too is just too confusing. at first i thought there was a glitch :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 26, 2013, 09:26:43 PM
LOL at first I thought Joseph was picking on me by changing my profile info, etc! Then I realized there was "Two" of us since my profile pic didn't change (the one with the Norelco lamps)
Joseph, I know what you're probably thinking as you read that...LOL. I was about to PM Joseph saying there was a glitch or he inadvertently got into my account or I had been hacked by some other party...and ask what to do about it and/or stay off GOL for awhile.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 26, 2013, 10:28:44 PM
imagine if joe copied your avitar and signature and pic title? that would be super confusing. :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 30, 2013, 09:47:07 AM
I was thinking of changing my profile pic to that 100w GE packaging while he had his like that...
Imagine if Joseph and I copied your profile pic, signature, etc. identically? Now THAT would be REALLY confusing!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 30, 2013, 10:22:09 AM
are you trying to foreshadow something? :P lol BTW, off to camp at 4PM today until about 4PM next sunday! you wont be hearing from me but "I'llzz be back!!!"


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on June 30, 2013, 01:03:46 PM
Imagine if Joseph and I copied your profile pic, signature, etc. identically? Now THAT would be REALLY confusing!

That can be arranged... :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 30, 2013, 11:49:48 PM
Sounds like Joseph and I have full run of the site then, don't we?
Is it just me or am I, Joseph, and Mike the three who are on here the most?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on July 01, 2013, 01:31:53 AM
For now yep, but Niall, Vince and Jace were fairly active a while back too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 01, 2013, 12:51:55 PM
Yeah Vince was pretty active awhile back...so was Aaron before he started his new job...he still posts pics on LG though....
I do love how friendly this site is...if it weren't for you guys sharing all your knowledge I would still be pretty ignorant about lighting...Joseph, Mike, and Aaron have taught me the most! Thanks guys!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on July 07, 2013, 05:50:24 PM
we all have to teach other so that we don't loose information over the years. and yeah we seem to be the most active followed by vince and aaron.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on July 07, 2013, 06:26:59 PM
That's actually why I've been supportive of starting a lighting theory and streetlight info wiki on the site as we can compile all we know into one place.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on July 08, 2013, 12:08:57 PM
yeah a wiki someday would be helpful. Joe Maurath has told be a LOT of stuff through emails. I kinda forget a lot of it but I've saved amost every email we've interchanged so someday i'll have to put all the information together.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on July 08, 2013, 03:57:10 PM
Yeah, unfortunately if we want any chance of getting a wiki, we'll probably have to switch to a host with less file restrictions. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 24, 2013, 05:18:21 PM
-  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -  -

Okay, my mom said i can put a light in my room on a display like Aaron has and Jeremiah had. Now the question is where to put it, what light to use, and msot importantly, how to go about building it. I want to use conduit as the pole and arm to make a davit pole style like Jeremiah had used. A little way to remember him I suppose, though i don't have a M-100 to put on the pole lol. I'm thinking of using the OVC, OV-10, or RMA. Or maybe the OV-25 with a PL13 in it or something.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 04, 2013, 01:37:37 AM
Went to the recycle centre today to drop off some dead CFLs and it turns out that they also accept HID lamps as I saw some dead MH and HPS lamps in the CFL bin. I did find a MH with the outer missing though, the arctube was blackened but still intact.

Nothing of interest though, only some pretty new MH, HPS, and newer T12 and T8 lamps so I didn't try to rescue anything.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Model25FanForever on August 04, 2013, 06:16:49 PM
Ikea takes old florescent light tubes as well now


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 05, 2013, 06:06:51 PM
I was thinking, my uncle's friend (who really is a friend to me too) who gave me the OV-10 and OVC has a friend that works for NGrid's Massachusetts division (he was the one who removed my OV-10). NGrid doesn't repalce igniters, so I'm sure he removes lights all the time for bad igniters and nothing else is wrong with them.

Do you think it would be a good idea to ask him to ask his friend to set aside maybe 4 or 5 lights and I'll take a look at them and replace the igniters (if that's not wrong with them, order a new ballast) maybe repaint them, and sell them on eBay? I figure it's a good way to make a little extra $$$ and have fun restoring lights at the same time.

Do you think i would come across rude if i were to ask him to ask his friend for a couple of non-working lights and then restore them and sell them?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 05, 2013, 06:13:11 PM
I guess it depends on the person but I would offer to buy them at scrap value or slightly more than scrap value since he went to the trouble of setting them aside for you. Maybe you can strike up a similar deal with someone else that fixes lights too.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 05, 2013, 07:27:06 PM
Yeah true... Joe Maurath told me he has a friend up in NH that restores lights from  NGrid's dumpster and sells them to his local utility company. Even NGrid comes to him when they run low on lights. He actually fixes the igniters himself. Typically a resistor goes bad or something like that so solder in a new one and the light can go another 15 years easily. He gets unlimited acess to NGrid's dumpster and 90% of the lights are in perfect shape and those that are busted he can usually build a few lights out of the good parts from various fixtures. Anyway i think it'd be really come to do that. But yeah the scrap value (cast aluminum is what maybe 10 bucks a fixture?)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 06, 2013, 02:11:41 AM
Cool! I guess the open board ignitors are easier repairable but I'm not sure about the potted ones that replacement ballasts use. Still you can probably even put in a new ballast and end up making money too.

Not sure about scrap value for a light but I think $10-20 should be reasonable. You can probably also make some extra cash scrapping any dead ballasts and busted up housings you come across too.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 06, 2013, 11:20:37 AM
Yeah the HPS igniters are apparently really simple. the PSMH igniters are overly complicated so his friend doesn't deal with those. His friend is very perfectionist with his lights too. He has a contect with someone on the GE assembly line and gets an exact factory paint color and apply it with a foam brush and his contact helps him out when he comes across any troubles. But Joe M said the fixtures look so factory fresh all they're missing is the factory box. I wouldn't really be very nitpicky with the paint though if this idea works out. In fact, if the paint is decent on some lights i might leave it original. A fresh coat of paint might let the light sell for more though. I'm not sure how much i'd want to sell the lights at though. Maybe 50-75 bucks each? I mean, if they work great and have fresh paint that's reasonable IMO. Maybe 40-60 bucks for one with original paint?

BTW, Marco works for RISE (which is a RI union company that NGrid contracts work out to) and he is working on the new lighting for the "Providece Viaduct", which is a maze of ramps in front of the Providence Place Mall on I-95. The existing lights are 400W HPS Holophane drop lens highmasts wired at 480V. The highmasts are coming down in favor of LEDs on "short poles", so probably the davit poles that the M-400 FCOs are used on. The 1000W MH highmasts in Coventry, RI on I-95 are also slated for removal in a couple years but he didn't look at the blueprints yet to see if the new lights are HPS or LED.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 06, 2013, 03:23:43 PM
Hmm, I thought the PSMH ignitors are the same since both basically do the same thing...send a HV pulse to the lamp when power is applied. Anyway interesting that he has a contact to get the original colour paint from GE. O_o

A new coat of paint should help the light sell easier and for more and I think you can also sell them to new collectors who have trouble finding a light. I guess for them you can also include a cord, lamp, and PC as part of a package.

I'd say $50-75 is pretty reasonable for a refurbed light, maybe a bit more if the ballast is new and the fixture gets a new coat of paint.

I find it interesting that RIDOT is converting the last of the highmasts to davit poles as here the exact opposite is happened as MTO is converting from the truss poles to highmast.

I guess LED highmasts still aren't that good yet so if they want LED shorter poles are needed. That and probably the highmast poles are starting to rust out since you mentioned they're the older style with the drop lens. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 06, 2013, 08:26:14 PM
LOL most of my 4' lamps came from trash finds...including all those warm white Mainlighters! Another time I found the F40CW Mainlighter and was like  :o :o :o...and it works!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 06, 2013, 11:09:22 PM
yeah i thought so too but i guess it requires different parts to make that HV pulse. yeah i was like wow exact paint color huh? :-)

Yeah i was thinking washing and repainting them. I assume all the lights will need is a simple igniter change. I wouldn't be including any lamps or PCs though. I'll get one lamp of each wattage too keep on hand (i have a 50, 70, and 250W HPS lamp so all i need is 100W and 150W HPS) so i can test the fixtures. I would ask only for small lights since hunting down boxes for small lites is hard enough, nevermind medium sized lights. I'll probably ask for two to start with (that's like 60 bucks i'm putting into the two lights if you figure 10 bucks for paint for each light, 10 bucks to pay for the scrap value to my friends, and 20 bucks for a pair of GE igniters. So 30 bucks a light out of my pocket and sell them for about 70 a piece and there's 40 bucks in profit per light. not bad... not bad at all... If i restore two and only sell one, i still make 10 bucks in profit. if both sell rather quickly i'll see if i can get four more, since i'd have exta money to get more lights. the only thing though is i don't want to be stuck with them after i put monet into them or i'm not getting anything out of dealing with them.

Yeah i don't know why they want to get rid of the highmasts. doesn't make sense to me. Yeah the poles are sorta rusted out but the lowering devices still all work as they put all new lamps in last year (and half are either out or cycling now :8) ) Even if they were to use HPS they'd still be using davit poles isntead of highmasts. Highmasts are great for interchanges since the poles are generally away from the road and you don't need a bucket truck so less liability (though the ones up your way are right in the middle of the road and you do need a bucket truck lol) Yeah there used to be three highmast installations. Two were 1000W MH/MV with the older round ballast cases and the 400W HPS set up which has the newer short square ballast case. all three setups used the drop lens highmasts that look almost like NEMA heads. i don't really like the highbay style highmasts. they're BORING. the drop lens ones are pretty cool to look at IMO. One of the MH highmast set ups was removed in the mid 2000s with over a few hundred (i'm not kidding!) HPS GE M-400 FCOs on davit poles. Probably 1/5th of the poles have been roadkill too. I don't see how switching to cobraheads saved any money.


Yeah it seems a lot of people replace lamps in pairs so the good lamp gets tossed too. And if someone gets a T8 fixture they'll just throw out their stock of T12s.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 07, 2013, 12:01:28 AM
I bet this was from a T8 conversion many years before; the lamps came from the local town hall/community center, and were stored in the attic in old GE and Norelco boxes! (Got a few Norelco lamps that way too). Then I "rescued" them, gave them to my all-T12 school since at the time I had NO space for them, then got them back about a year later, so technically they're a trash find. The F40CW Mainlighter was found in the trash shed at the community hall along with a few WW ones long after I permanently scored all the other WW ones and a couple Norelco F40CWs.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 07, 2013, 10:32:46 AM
I've never seen anything Norelco here before. If it wasn't for the GoL and Lg i wouldn't have ever heard of Norelco. I first hear of them with their 175W MV yardblaster sold with the 150W HPs conversion lamp. Didn't they make the grooved head yardblasters too?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 15, 2013, 01:48:41 PM
Not sure if the grooved-head ones were Philips or Norelco, or both...but Norelco is technically Philips so it's basically the same light.
I remember the first time I ever saw Norelco on a light bulb, it was a Norelco F40CW which is now sadly EOL at someone's house but I may grab it anyway...squeeze a few more hours out of it on my shunted series RS ballast in that MetaLux/Gibson troffer light.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 17, 2013, 12:43:16 AM
It looks like they were originally Norelco (http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-66868) but changed to Philips later on. So you really have to know the date or see the tag to see which is which.

Went to Restore on Friday and picked up a NOS 40w CGE Lumiline for my fixture so now I have a spare working bulb.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 30, 2013, 07:22:41 PM
I'm back home in Alaska after a very busy summer (well, actually, 2013 in general). I've been pretty negligent of LG and GOL for the last couple months, as I've been on the move and had my first job.
I haven't scored anything lighting-related for almost two months now, unless you count having to buy light bulbs at the grocery store to actually use...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 31, 2013, 12:19:50 PM
welcome back! not much in has happened to me lately in terms of lighting either. I was able to score two M-400A2s this past monday (not really leagally but someone stole the RLG and two M-1000s i wanted so i decided to got for the A2s) I contacted someone a week ago and no reply yet anyways so it's a good thing i stole the M-400A2s lol. I have a few more photocells now too.

 I  scored a working F40/D Sylvania Lifeline from my aunt and uncle's basement yesterday. it was the lifeline that was in the fixture that i got from them a while back. they never gave me the lamps with them. He swapped around a few of the lamps but all the lamps are still there from the first time i saw the fixtures. The other lamp that was in my fixture is in the wide-spaced tubes fixture and it replaced a lifelien which is laying up in the beams with another lifeline.

So i think there are three more lifelines, an 80s-90s Sylvania F40CW, an Philips F40CW, and a GE (all i know is that it's GE from the endcaps, i couldn't see the etch) The F20T12 fixture has two inside etch F20CW GEs i think.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2013, 01:30:01 PM
Are you using the Daylight Lifeline somewhere? That's a really cool find, especially considering it's daylight, my favorite fluorescent color!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 31, 2013, 03:20:14 PM
itested it but i'm not putting it in use since i want to keep it working. Daylight is sorta blue for me but it is a nice color. the place where i got my wisdom teeth out had a mix of daylight and 5000K lamps and the 5000K lamps looks very drab compared to the daylight tubes. The daylight tubes stood out much more. There were also cool white and 3500K in the hallways and a mix of warm white and either 3500K or cool white in the patient rooms. everything was T8.

there are three more daylight lifelines too. i hope they work.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2013, 05:07:50 PM
Which light did you test it in? I'm guessing the WWII single-lamp industrial that's currently just laying around?
Yeah try to get those daylight Lifelines! Although daylight is sorta blue it sure looks fantastic at night! It does look kinda drab compared to real daylight coming through a window, erc.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 31, 2013, 06:49:22 PM
you got it! i tested it in the single lamp WWII industrial. I love the sound of the GE ballast. When you plug it in it buzzes loudly then the starter PING P-P-PING PINGs nice and loud then the fixture buzzes softly. i kept the original hubbell starter in it.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on August 31, 2013, 10:47:00 PM
Well for me, I'd say I did get some more goodies over the summer.

Here's a condensed list:
Black Leviton and GE fluorescent sockets.
Mogul sockets
Cooper UCD shoebox
Mogul socket extender and other adapters
22w preheat? Circline ballast
1kW HPS
1kW MV
1kW MH
40w Lumiline fixture w/ NOS replacement bulb
175w reflector mercs x3
 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 01, 2013, 12:08:45 AM
Nice finds! I want to find a Westy Lifeguard lamp in 175w or 400w, some .80a full power F40 ballasts, and an F40 preheat fixture sometime soon.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 01, 2013, 02:23:28 AM
Thanks! Fortunately most of the stuff in your want list is still fairly common on eBay. Especially the 175w Westy Lifeguard and full power ballasts. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 01, 2013, 11:23:11 AM
yeah some of it is still common but it won't be forever. :(

BTW, the light in front of my house is officially a cycler. 5 years. Not that bad unless you compare it to the previous lamp that lasted from the early 90s up to when the bird nest overheated the lamp in either 2007 or 2008 (i forgot when lol) so over 15 years the original lamp lasted. okay, maybe 5 years isn't so impressive. It was a full mercury lamp though, not one of those yellowish eco lamps that NGrid uses now.

Here's the weird thing though, it'll stay on for anywhere between 30 seconds to 5 minutes but it's ALWAYS off for EXACTLY 30 seconds! And the lamp never fully extinguishes either, it basically just hot restrikes. I was watching family guy on cartoon network last night at about 10PM (my parents were out so i got to watch it on the 42" LCD in the living room lol. :P and i was looking out at the light in the corner of my eye and it went out at least 15 times during one half our show!

I want to report the light so that it gets fixed but at the same time i want to catch the lineman relamping it so i ca get the FPolc photocell, ask him to check the date of the fixture, and see if he removed any MV fixtures lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 01, 2013, 04:48:30 PM
Very cool!
I've been meaning that I read in a book about my town that was recently published that the building my "Old School" fixtures came from was built in 1979 which makes the ballasts that were in them likely original! And often they've run era-appropriate lamps since I've acquired them, although one of them has modern lamps right now and the other is a "Tester/lamp-finisher-offer" one with the third lamp...I'm still very pleased with how the conversion to 3-lamp turned out! (Although if I could find a 3-lamp F32T8 ballast I'd use it in there so there's more space between lamps and since the original Advance ballast running the outer lamps overheats and the thermal protector shuts it down after about an hour, then it takes about 30 minutes to reset itself.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 01, 2013, 06:04:51 PM
if the thermal protection keeps tripping you shouldn't use the ballast. The thermal protection will only work for a handful of times before it either permanetly shuts down the ballast or the ballast shorts out, which would kill both the lamps and possibly start a fire. :o if you want to use it just run a fuse inline with it so if the thermal protection fails you have a backup.

i personally think thermal proection is sorta dumb i think it should have a reseting circuit breaker of sort sort that would trip if the current drawn goes above normal because often by the time the thermal protection trips there's a pool of tar in the ballast channell and sometimes the ballast never gets hot enough to trip the thermal protection so it's useless!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 01, 2013, 07:48:52 PM
There's probably several reasons why the Advance ballast is overheating. It was probably already running hot with two lamps in the fixture but the added lamp and ballast pushed it over the limit. I personally would replace the ballast since RS is still common or add a 1A inline fuse to it.

If the TP keeps tripping it could get stuck on which will disable it. Apparently that's a common cause of ballast fires so I would change the ballast ASAP if I want to keep using the fixture. Some of my ballasts have non-resettable protectors so if it overheats the ballast needs to be changed. Personally it's much safer than the resettable ones. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 02, 2013, 10:29:38 AM
Yeah most people on the LG and here haven't found TP all too helpful lol. If a ballast is in good shape when you get it then all you have to do is always use the correct full wattage lamps, replace EOL lamps or starters ASAP, provide the balalst with proper heat sinking (if possible, don't mount a fixture flush to a drywalled celing, try suspending it, as the drywall suffocates the ballast by not letting air flow above the fixture, which would take heat away from the fixture. That's why a lot of fluorescent fixtures mounted right up against a celing tend to run hot and pair that with 34W lamps...

What's why if you see wrap lights installed on a suspended grid ceiling, the lights will by mounted on one of the metal T-bars. Since it's metal it conducts heat away from the fixture, to to be honest, troffers are really the best fixtures for suspnded ceilings in terms of ballast life. I like the look of wrap lights installed flush with the celing though since that's how my elementary school was.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 02, 2013, 08:49:28 PM
This ballast was overheating (with 40w lamps; no 34w energy savers) with the ballast cover off, long before the third lamp was added. In fact, I remember this light doing it when it was still in use at my school! I do want to replace both ballasts, as they're both pretty old and neither work quite right (The other is wired for one lamp since it's half-dead, it's a Universal Therm-o-Matic.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 03, 2013, 06:46:48 PM
Hmm yeah some ballasts just run hotter. It could be that there was an air bubble when they were filling the ballast with tar so the ballast has air pockets in it so less tar. Does the ballast feel a little lit lighter than another ballast? (the difference might be ever so slightly so you'd probably need to weigh them).

My three Therm-O-Matic ballasts seem pretty touch so maybe your was either from a bad batch or had 34W ballast killers in it? I have five 34W lamps now so i need a fixture or two that i can use them in lol. My too vintage GE red-etched tubes, and the three NOS Philips Econ-o-watt lamps that i just couldn't pass up since they have my favorite Philips etch with the thin PHILIPS and the shield logo plus they're full mercury.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 03, 2013, 11:45:14 PM
Your Metalux turret lume should run 34w lamps okay with that Advance Mark III energy saver ballast. (And it's partially the same company who made my "Old-School" fixture that Advance ballast that overheats is in (And it's lit as I type).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 04, 2013, 05:56:06 PM
Oh yeah i forgot about that light to be honest lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 04, 2013, 11:20:44 PM
The EPAK 34 type ballasts will run 34w lamps fine too since they are basically designed for them. 40w lamps are pretty dim on them.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 05, 2013, 12:25:47 PM
are those those ballasts with the green cases? i heard those stink lol.

I hope to be able to get some of the fluorescent fixtures in my family within the next couple years. First, that preheater in my grandpa's shop. I think he wants to sell the shop in the future. I don't know how long it'll be so I want to get that fixture in his bathroom down. Then those three preheaters in my cousin's grandma's garage because the T8 fixtures are right there waiting to be installed along with the lamps. The fixtures have really shallow ballast housings so they probably have oval-case GE tulamp ballasts. :D Those Sylvania CWP lamps are doing well in the fixtures too!

So as of today, I could repalce those four fixtures without needing to buy any lamps or fixtures! So they're free basically! I bought the ballast and lamps for the fixture going to my grandpa's shop with a gift card.

After those fixtures, my next priorety is the fixtures at my great-aunt's house. That includes the two other Western Electric F20 fixtures and KEN-RAD lamps, the 8ft tandem preheat fixture, and the T17 fixture. and I'd be retrofitting the two strip lights in the garage to T8. I know I want to wait to get the fixtures until i get my own place but I'll cram as many fixtures as i can into the shed at this point. If they're in my shed I can rest assured knowing that the fixtures are in my hands.

I don't think I'd need to get replacements for the 8ft tandem light or the T17 fixture, as she doesn't use them to begin with. I will need to get replacements for the basement F20 WE fixtures. Probably either F17T8 strips or wraps or F32 strips, wraps, or shoplites.

As for the fixtures at my aunt and uncle's, they're being taken down anyways so i'm not responsible for getting the new fixtures. :P ;D My uncle is just going to have the basement rewired for "regular lights" though. By that i assume he means keyless sockets wired to a wall switch...

Lastly, my priorety is my grandparents' house, which has the second T17 fixture, the four F40T12 Western Electric fixtures, the NOS LOA shoplite, an NOS F14T12 TS strip light, and the three lamp F20T12 halfpiper. Plus there are some vintage incandscent lamps that I'd like to have and I'd leave them with an equal number of newer lamps. This one is my least priorety since it'd be the most expensive plus i see them the most so i don't have to worry about the fixtures "disappearing" or becoming unavailable to me for some reason. I would be using five F32T8 strip lights to replace the 3 F40T12 lights, the T17, and the F20 half piper. Maybe i can get away with a cheapo F32 shoplite to replace the T17... But bottom line, it won't be cheap...

The good thing for these replacements is that the fixtures tend to be in different rooms so i don't have to worry about getting all the same fixtures, which means if i see some newer T8 fixtures at the Restore I can get those and use them.

So here's my list of upplies i need in total:
- (7) T8 fluorescent fixtures (either all F32T8 or two F17T8 and five F32T8)
- (2) F32T8 fluorescent ballasts
- (6) bi-pin sockets
- (17) F32T8 fluorescent lamps.

so this will be costly and i'll only be using the cheap crap...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 05, 2013, 03:50:13 PM
Yeah, they are lol. I tried some full wattage F40s in them and they're so dim.

Yeah, looks like you should try to save the preheater in the shop ASAP. I don't about you, but I personally like the Sylvania /CWP lamps.

Hope you can get the other fixtures too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 05, 2013, 05:16:25 PM
yeah the Sylvania CWP lamps are the best. they're halophosphate, not eco, full wattage, and BRIGHT! I just have a pair of crappy lamps lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 05, 2013, 09:22:39 PM
Uhhh I think they're truphosphor as the older ones are 70CRI but newer ones might be deluxe halophosphate since they are 87CRI which sounds very CWX-ish to me...could they be a relabeled CWX? And yes, they are bright, especially on full-power PCB RS ballasts like we all have in our lights *(Unless they're preheat).
I would go for T8 shoplights and 6500K lamps personally but it's just me.  Are you eventually going to save the striplights you're converting and convert them back to T12, or? Cheapo shoplites might be cheaper unless you find ballasts at the ReStore or something.
While we're talking about vintage preheat and rapid start fixtures, I have some good news for you guys! Guess what: I will quite possibly soon own to vintage vaportight F40 lights, sans vaportight deffusers and maybe ballast covers, with .80 amp Advance Kool-Koil ballasts! Remember me talking about rescuing my Sears shoplight from a house that a former teacher of mine used to own that was going to be demolished? Well, they moved to a new house nearby (And I mean a couple blocks away) that has a woodshop (Both he and the previous owner are into woodworking which is another hobby of mine I might add!) lit with vintage Sears shoplights JUST like mine and a pair of 70s vaportight lights, sans lenses, that came from the other since-torn-down house originally! (So they were in the same room as my Sears light). Anyway he said they weren't working and I saw them lampless and visibly disconnected, and he said when they come down he'll let me know.  If nothing else I'd scrap what's left of the fixtures and use one of the Advance ballasts to replace mine that overheats.  And I hope to get the other three Sears lights! One has a WestPointe (True Value) 40w SP41 lamp and a pre-Ecolux GE 34w cool white Watt-Miser (Which probably shouldn't be there and I passed along the word about the dangers of 34w lamps in older lights like that). Another has a 90s Sylvania Design 50 and I think a warm white lamp, maybe even a Mainlighter! The other one has another warm white lamp and another GE Watt-Miser.  Another fixture has a warm white lamp and what judging from the blackening and being barely able to see GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC I suspect to be a cool white Mainlighter! There were a few other lamps laying around, there was an EOL post-'92, pre-Ecolux GE Chroma 50, a few Watt-Misers, a pair of ACE Universal-Deluxe SP41s, and another Design 50.  Eventually I hope to score all these! In another room there's what I think is a Power Lighting Products Shoplight like the ones at my place in CA with a Chroma 50 and Design 50. Hope to get these!!!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 06, 2013, 08:30:20 PM
Oh i hope you get them! BTW, what does your sears shoplight look like? does it look identical to my 1973 reflector strip light or is it different?

Well, i went to the restore up in Putnam, CT. they didn't have much but what they did have was pretty sweet! Before i get into what i got, I'll mention what i didn't get:
-a bunch of F25T12 30" lamps,
-some shorter looking slimline lamps,
-8ft T8 slimlines
-three cases or non-alto F17T8 Philips Holland lamps from 2007
-a 70W HPS floodlight for $9 bucks (i wish i would have gotten it)
-a few really cool looking recessed square incandescent fixtures with prismatic glass lenses and internal reflectors I wish i would have gotten one...
-F6T5 lamps


Now, what i DID get:
-Four NOS inside etch GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC F20T12/CW lamps
-An NOS Lithonia (2) F8T5 magnetic preheat undercabinet light like Joe's (sans lamps, i'll need to get those)
-An NOS Sylvania 400W MV /C lamp! O_O O_O
-An NOS GE post-bonus line GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC 175W MV /DX lamp!
-A used Advance F32T8 0.75A two-lamp IS ballast.
-An NOS 1990s F14T12/CW Philips lamp

The place was lit with F40T12/RS troffers and there was a F40T12 two lamp reflector strip light with the same design as my reflector strip light but the reflector was narrower (but still just as deep). I really liked the design of it.

But yeah i really which i would have grabbed one of those recessed incandescent squares with the prismatic lenses and internal reflectors. If they weren't recessed style lights i may have but even then i don't have the room in the house so it'd have to go outside. Unless i find a preheater or really ancient RS or cool looking RS fixture, I'll only be buying the fixtures for their ballasts if they're over 2ft. T8 fixtures are an exception, as I can use those to replace family members' T12 fixtures.

I don't think i'll be going back to that restore though. the RI restore has a lot more stuff and it's cheaper too (mostly because i bargain and switch price tags on stuff i think is too expensive. Shh! don't tell anyone! :P lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 06, 2013, 10:40:17 PM
Nice finds Mike! Mine gets recessed square lights from time to time but I never bought any since I never had a use for one. I supposed I could always slap a 70w MH ballast inside and convert it to 100w MV.

Recently found out that someone replaced a LED with a B2217 lol, have a pic of that in my gallery.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 06, 2013, 11:07:04 PM
thanks! yeah i didn't find much but what i found was pretty good stuff! the recessed squares looked a little on the older side and said MAX WATTAGE 200W They were either 12X12" or 18"X18", most likely the former.

going backwards in time eh?
"


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 07, 2013, 03:51:46 PM
Ahh, 200w incandescent would be fine for 100w MV. In fact some older fixtures were dual rated for 200w incandescent or 100w MV. It seems the 12x12 recessed squares are more common than the 18" ones too.

Yeah, looks like the LED was up for only a year at most, back in July 2012 the pole still held a 400w MV B2255.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 07, 2013, 04:57:56 PM
I'll post a pic of mine in a minute... the reflector is nothing like yours.
Cool find on that 400w /C!
The Restore I went to was one of those steel warehouse-type buildings and was lit with suspended troffer-looking F40 fixtures that had a random mix of (Probably donated) lamps along with a couple MH highbays.  And they had all kinds of cool non-lighting things too!
Luckily ReStores seem very common so you can go to more than one in the same day! (And you went as far as to drive out of state! (Although RI is a very small state!)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 07, 2013, 06:09:55 PM
anything over an hour's drive is out of the question with my parents and the putnam restore and the one i usually go to are both 45 minutes from my house. the next closest one is in Worcester, MA, which is pretty much a solid hour from me. The next time i go to the restore I'll be going to my regular restore but after that, i'll try and check out the Massachusetts restore.


BTW, i realized I have over 50 F20T12 lamps. O_O and i only need three lamps to light the two F20T12 fixtures i have lol. 30 out of the >50 lamps are warm white though. I guess it's really not too bad of a color... I prefer cool white or 3500K/white lamps though... i have a mix of cool white and 3500K/white F20s but no daylight F20T12s.

As for F40T12s, I don't have nearly that many lamps as i do for F20T12 and I'll have a slew of F40 fixtures. Those fixtures will all come with lamps plus whatever lamps are in storage too. But i sure have a ton of F20s i just realized today! Time to start concentrating on the F40 tubes lol. If you think about it though, the F20 lamps are twice as easy to store though, as they're half the size.

Today, my mom and I went around looking at yard sales. I never really see anything lighting related but today i saw a partial case of full mercury Philips lamps I was like "oh boy we have to get these!" Then i pull out a lamp and see "econo-watt" and "34W" and was like "eh, nevermind". There were like 15+ lamps and the case was only 7 bucks but i didn't buy it if they were thin etched lamps i may have took the bait but they were bold etched. i want to save room for the full-wattage lamps instead of the 34W lamps.


EDIT/ UPDATE: I have 55 F20T12s in total and 22 F40T12s in total. I have one F15T12 and four F14T12s. Then I have four F13T5s. That's all for linear fluorescent.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on September 07, 2013, 07:45:20 PM
I think I went to 4 Restores once on the same day :o Granted there's like 7 of them located less than a hour away from me. (The GTA has a lot of Restores)

I have a lot of F20T12 and F32T8 lamps but don't have a lot of F40 lamps. Granted, most of my fixtures in regular use are T8 instead of T12. I might pick up a spare pack of Sylvania /DCWP lamps at Lowe's though, particularly when the preheater from Mike arrives as I'll be using those on my preheat ballast. 

I also have around 6-7 F14T12 lamps but I have three fixtures so that makes sure I have one spare for each fixture. Also have some oddball lengths and wattages not listed here but the lion's share of my fluorescent collection is on here and LG.

I think the only lamp type I don't have a spare of is F96T12/HO, 8' lamps are too much of a pain to store so I never bothered with getting a spare.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 07, 2013, 09:30:17 PM
I bet I have at least 50 F40 lamps in storage and not in use in fixtures! Most of them are GE F40WW Mainlighters.  I only have two F20s, one in use and one sitting in a cardboard mailer tube. They are a Philips F20T12/WW (In use) and a Westy F20T12/CW with the rare aluminum ends!
I love yard sales, I find all kinds of cools stuff all the time! I would've bought those if they were only $7. One time I arrived at a yard sale and someone was just buying a pair of NIB Lithiona F40 striplights.  I like those 2-lamp F40 and F96 slimline lights better than the "Shoplight" type with reflectors.  Seems to me like the F40 versions are kinda hard to find, the 8' slimline versions seem more common in my experience.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 22, 2013, 01:21:18 PM
I haven't been finding that much lighting-related stuff lately compared to earlier this year when I was bringing home at least an F40/F34 lamp a day!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 22, 2013, 06:18:33 PM
I'm getting my M-250R1C that I'm sure you've seen in the gallery sometime this coming week. I'm going to make home made apple sauce from some apples we picked today.

I haven't gotten a bill for those door decals yet nor have I gotten a response to my ranting email... If i don't get any letters or emails within the next week or so I'll consider the decals mine.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 22, 2013, 07:43:01 PM
I got an insulator today! With the wooden screw-pin to boot!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 23, 2013, 06:12:56 PM
nice! My M-250R1 arrived today but one of the hinges broke off. >:( I reglued it with Krazy Glue (super glue) but i don't expect it to hold. I'll see if it does though. I'm going to leave it overnight so it fully sets before installing the door back on the fixture. it wasn't broken in the fixture listing so i'm thing the friggin seller broke the hing opening the fixture. dumbass. :8) >:( oh and thanks for telling me about it? ??? i don't think it broke in shipping because the hing wold have still been where it should have been, whereas it was completly loose in the fixture when i got it.

The paint is really scratched up on top but otherwise a really nice fixture! the PC socket looks like the ones GE uses now but it's still a screw held one not a tool free one.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 23, 2013, 10:23:47 PM
I hate how cheap clip-on lights have sockets that go bad with the first bulb change! They just arc and make the bulb flicker if it lights at all... :8) :P...had the above happen for not the first time today on my boat...agh! Cheap junk! :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 26, 2013, 11:06:12 PM
Today I got my indoor vegetable garden going again and rediscovered how my plant light (A 90s Lithiona wraparound-cum-shoplight suspended from the ceiling with gangion (thick, poly string) has amazingly slow and spectacular startup flicker with the 40w lamps (a 90s GE Plant&Aquarium and a '79 warm white Mainlighter) on that MagneTek energy saver ballast...I should try to get a video
Also discovered today that the 2' T8 lamps in a couple 2' wraparounds on my boat striate just like F34T12s in cooler temps! (And they're on electronic instant-start ballasts).
I'm also working on getting some more fluorescent fixtures, a couple Power Products F40 shoplights and some plastic LOA F15T8 preheat undercabinet lights to cannibalize for parts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 27, 2013, 09:24:41 PM
my 1973 shoplite takes a while to start the two GE 4100K EcoLux lamps in it. They glow blue at the ends and striate for about 3-4 seconds then fade on.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 27, 2013, 10:38:54 PM
Huh...and that's with a full-power ballast? Sounds like one of them isn't installed all the way and isn't making contact with both pins of the socket on one end or something.  Normally this would result in rectifying (I've known this to ruin a lamp ( A nice Noreclo F40CW too!) in no time!) but if there's enough emitter the lamp will run normally if it starts.  I had a pair of GE Mainlighters do that in my Sears shoplight once...every time I turned it on they took longer and longer to start.  Finally they would just sit there dim-glowing.  It then occurred to me to twist the lamps and sure enough that was the problem.

I swapped the Chroma 50 lamps I have into the other light from my school so I can use their high CRI for better color rendering for macrophotography (Lamp etches, etc.) And with the Sylvanias in the 3-lamper the Advance ballast doesn't seem to overheat either!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 28, 2013, 09:14:22 AM
Yeah the lamps are installed correctly. They're Y-slot so if they weren't you'd hear "click" when the lamps fell out than a combination of "POP" and shattering glass as they hit the concrete floor lol.

I'll have to try other lamps and try those lamps in another fixture. then get a vieo of course! I've totally forgotten my youtube password so I'll have to reset it lol...

Honestly I like the slow, sorta dramatic start up but if it's going to chew through the lamps I don't want that. So far no end blackening.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 28, 2013, 05:37:14 PM
How much does the light get used? Yeah I know what you mean...remember me telling the story about replacing the Philips F40CWs with Ace Eco lamps that lasted only fifteen minutes? That time I thought there would be the "pop/shatter" thing as they hit the concrete floor since at first I thought they were coming loose! (And that light had Y-slot sockets)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 28, 2013, 10:28:28 PM
it's used at least once a day but not ususally for more than a minute or two. It turns out it's the lamps. I tried them in another RS fixture to find them acting the same way. I tried a westie blackender and a daylight lifeline in the 1973 RS fixture and they start like a normal RS (a little on the slow side).

When i was up on the ladder and the fixture was on i realized how much the ballat actually hums. I thought it was silent. We have an intermatic electromechanical timer in that room that goes ch-ch-ch-ch-ch 24/7 so it drowns out the ballast but up on the ladder i heard the nice "hmmmmmmm".


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 29, 2013, 07:46:24 PM
My Sears light has a hum when first fired up when the lamps are still mercury starved, I guess it must be working harder then...but the compressor on the chest freezer below it is also rather noisy so it drowns it out...and it's on whenever my generator is on (I don't run my freezer on my battery/inverter system; it's on a totally different circuit along with the Sears light.
Is the Westy and Lifeline still in the fixture? Or did you stick in the Philips F40DXs or something?


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 30, 2013, 05:04:29 PM
i only stuck the westie CW and lifeline D in the fixture to see if the ballast was starting lamps normally. Those two lamps are my oldest lamps so i used them in the fixture. full wattage and full mercury.

Honestly, those two lamps are much dimmer than the 40W Ecolux cool white lamps. about as bright as 34W tubes without the flickering or striating. the ecoluxes are back in the light now.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 30, 2013, 10:36:13 PM
Nice, as long as they start I guess it's okay...I guess you could use those 40w Do-It lamps in there since they're pretty much a 40w GE in disguise...Personally I'd give those other Ecolux lamps to your aunt and uncle if they work on preheat to use in another one of those vintage lights and use the Philips F40DX Altos in the 1973 light...but that's just me.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 01, 2013, 07:37:28 PM
Well I payed $5 each for the GE Ecoluxes so I want to be the one to use them lol. the altos were free so it's not as big of a loss to me if they die or get broken or something.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 01, 2013, 09:18:51 PM
Oh I see! If they don't start reliably or have a broken cathode they'll work just fine on a F32T8 electronic IS ballast, I've had some GE 34w Watt-Misers in my T8 bathroom light without any troubles...I was out of F32T8 lamps at the time and since found some in the trash along with the second batch of Mainlighters but since they work just fine I'm leaving them as is, I'll wait till they EOL then replace them with that pair of SPX35 Ecolux T8s I found in the trash.
I've got that 3-lamp qasai-troffer light from school lit in this room now, with 3 Sylvania lamps...one of them being a CWP with the notorious mercury starvation at switch-on...even without the door/diffuser it's less noticeable with three lamps, two being full-mercury, than two of them in the Sears light which makes an annoying rectifying-like flicker till they warm up.
Oh and the Advance ballast still trips the thermal protection, but less often it seems!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 02, 2013, 10:04:11 PM
I just got six Holophane highbays from my grandpa! He got 120 of them from scrapping and he saved six for me. :D Plus he saved a couple dozen lamps. They have heavy glass lenses. they were originally 400W MH/MV but where reballested a year after they were made to 350W PSMH. they're 277V though so the ballasts are useless unfortunatly. So I need to get some 120V 350W PSMH ballasts...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 03, 2013, 10:35:06 PM
Sweet, I bet those would be bright in the basement where your F40 lights are now! (Just kidding!)
I'm thinking of converting that Lithiona F20 strip to preheat!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 05, 2013, 11:34:34 AM
Actually it'd be a lot dimmer since they all had 277V ballasts lol. So the ballasts will go back to my grandpa to be scrapped and I'll try to sell the igniters and caps. and I'll be selling some of the lamps too since he gave me a crapload of them since he can't throw them away (the mercury in them). The lamps all looks lightly used and are all Venture lamps as were the ballast kits.

The fixtures are Holophane Prismalumes made in the USA in June 1998.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 06, 2013, 02:26:19 AM
Hey Mike, if you have access to a 240v supply, most 277v ballasts should run on that too. I suppose the caps and the ignitors are still useful too, especially if you have another fixture that uses them. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on October 06, 2013, 02:37:46 PM
ehh still not really worth it since i'd need to plug them into my dryer outlet. Though i suppose when i get my own house i could run a 240V cable in let's say a pool house or garage (i better find a million dollar job if i want an indoor poolhouse lol) and run these lights in them... Maybe I'll save the ballasts just in case...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 07, 2013, 11:08:43 AM
Ahh, I guess its up to you then. Personally I might put them in like say the shed in case they're useful in the future but I understand why you would want to scrap the 277v ballasts instead.

And dude, indoor pools are expensive. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 07, 2013, 08:13:37 PM
Yeah maybe I can just get a nice big pole barn and light one section with the highbays and the rest with fluorescents lol. See, any place where i could put the highbays, the lights are frequently switched so HID isn't practical. :(

The energy bill this past month was over 200 bucks and my parents were a little upset about that. I feel bad because it's prbably my lights since we haven't run the A/C. How many ballast losses do reactor/reactance ballasts have? I heard it was really high at first then lowers down? how many watts does a 100W reactor/reactance Mv fixture draw? ???


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 08, 2013, 03:10:30 AM
Yeah, I don't really have a lot of places to use my HID lights too. Most of the lights in my house are frequently switched aside from the stairway light which stays on for at least a few hours per day. The current CFLs in it puts out around 4000 lumens total so I guess a conversion to low wattage HID would be feasible lol.

Anyway, reactor ballasts are the most efficient magnetic ballast type, next is probably CWA and HX, follwed by CWI. I think reg-lag is the least efficient out of all the types. Also single tap ballasts are more efficient than multi tap ballasts.

100w MV fixtures probably draw around 110w-120w depending on the ballast.   


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 08, 2013, 04:41:01 PM
Hmm. Why are CWA ballasts called "constant wattage"? I thought reactors were inefficient so that why CWA came about? What benifits does CWA have over reactors or reactance ballasts?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 09, 2013, 08:42:23 PM
Not sure but I heard somewhere the standard 175wMV yardlight (With HX ballast most likely) draws about 210w.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 09, 2013, 08:43:19 PM
Oh and if it makes you feel better once a relative got a $755 (Yes, really) electric bill for a 30 AMP SERVICE!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 09, 2013, 10:11:17 PM
i think yardblasters typically use about 200-210 watts but i heard those ballasts have higher ballast losses becuase they're cheaply made. A Good 175W MV reactor or reactance/HX ballast draws about 200W or less. CWA is probably in the 200-215 range.

I thought i heard that reactors and HX ballasts draw a LOT more power when starting up than when at normal operating power though?

ouch! $775! :o :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 10, 2013, 12:07:03 AM
$755...but still ridiculous! (And it wasn't even in the dead of winter, either! It was in April-May of this year.)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 10, 2013, 04:17:35 PM
Oops sorry. I meant 755 but i pressed the seven twice instead of the five lol.

BTW, remember the infamous I-295/ Route 37 interchange near my house and how the M-250R2s don't work right? Well, I contacted NGrid about having them fix them and they're saying that each light needs to be reported individually, meaning that I would need to write down the pole number of every light that needs to be fixed. Keep in mind this is a FREEWAY! Even if i had my own car this would be difficult. Nevermind that i don't have my own car.

Anyway, I'm going to tackle the dayburners and the lights with missing parts first and locate the missing poles first then I'll get the out lights after since those will be hardest (since the pole numbers are hard to read by day, let alone complete darkness). So I'll do my best. It doesn't seem to matter if i report missing poles though since they don't seem to take any action towards missing poles. Even when they do group-servicing they will fix all the fixtures but missing poles are just skipped over.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 10, 2013, 09:17:58 PM
Hmm...that's weird!
I've already got plans for the two old lensless vaportight F40 fixtures I'm getting mainly for the old Advance ballasts, I plan to put one in my second Sears shoplight and one to replace the one in my 3-lamper fixture that overheats. And the sockets will replace a few broken ones here and there on lights I have. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 11, 2013, 06:22:23 PM
yep i reported over 80 lights between yesterday and today. :o i got 74 confirmations out of the group. I still need about 20 more confirmations.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 11, 2013, 09:31:11 PM
I've always had this recurring fantasy of scoring a 3- or 4-lamp preheat F40 shoplight! Or a /C Westy Lifeguard...
On one of my generators the hertz is off I think as the lights flicker slightly...more discussion about it here: http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-66653
Wow that's a ton of lights to report! And any new updates on those preheat fixtures in your aunt and uncle's basement? Does that other light work now?



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 11, 2013, 10:22:37 PM
yeah a 3 or 4 lamp preheat shoplight would be an awesome score!

And nope no updates on the preheaters. I haven't seen my aunt and uncle since then. I haven't given them a second pair of lamps and starters yet either. Tomorrow is my brother's birthday so we'll be having a party. I'll be using my lights too. This yeah the M-250a up on its pole will light the yard along with my 175W Mv Ov-10 and 175W MV M-250R1. I'll post a collage of pics after the party.

and yeah a LOT of lights I reported! lol. I'm keeping track of them on a hand-drawn sketch of the interchange with dots for the light poles with the pole numbers next to them (pole numbers i looked at google streetview for). Lights i reported i highlighted blue. Lights they confirmed I circled in orange. missing poles are marked as a pink highlighted X instead of a dot. And lights that get fixed will get either a dash or will get colored in red. Lights that i don't get a email confirmation I'll resubmit an outage report and lights that were confirmed but don't get fixed I'll do the same. I'll keep on their case until all but maybe 2 or 3 work.

Some of the lights have baby blue PCs which were only used in the early 90s here which means thse fixtures have their original lamps and were never serviced. Some even have cream/light gray photocells which were used from the 60s up to the early 90s. This means the original HPS lights installed at that interchange were installed probably around 1989-1991.

There are at least 15 missing poles too and there are some big gaps too becuase of that. Knockdowns typically slip under the radar with them. I've been trying to get one pole in particular replaced and the base is as visible as can be yet they haven't replaced it YET. I've reported 15-20 missing poles in this batch of reports (same interchange) but i don't have high hopes of seeing them replaced. :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 12, 2013, 09:40:09 PM
And what if it came with daylight GE Mainlighters or vintage Chroma 50s?
It's funny, I haven't scored many 4' lamps lately compared to when I was finding stuff like Mainlighters every day!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 13, 2013, 09:18:20 AM
Oh i'd love that! the WWII light has a Norelco/Philips CW lamp and a GE of unknown vintage and color temp. I only know it's a GE because of the end caps. the next time i go over there I'll bring the two altos and starters for them.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 14, 2013, 03:54:20 PM
Anyone else get the day off today? Here in Canada it's Thanksgiving today.  :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 14, 2013, 04:30:28 PM
ahh Today is Columbus Day so I get the day off but a lot of states don't give students the day off because of the way he invaded the Native Americans' lands. It's not like he really discovered America. You can't discover a something that people already know about... That's like me walking into your house and "discovering" your bedroom. :8) lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 14, 2013, 09:31:45 PM
Yeah well as far as that goes look at our gov't shutdown... :8)
Nice, I hope you score that Philips lamp! It was probably made at the Lynn, Massachusetts factory so it would have all the design features of a Norelco.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 14, 2013, 10:43:30 PM
Heh, I see what you mean lol. Might as well say that I "discovered" one of your streetlights too. :P

We don't celebrate Columbus Day here in Canada but it seems I always get that day off anyway since our Thanksgiving always falls on your Columbus Day.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 14, 2013, 11:33:47 PM
Our thanksgiving is in November FYI...do you guys celebrate Halloween there?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 15, 2013, 05:00:05 PM
yeah thanksgiving here is always the last Thursday in November (so the schools always get Thursday and Friday off  ;D ) Do you guys have Black Friday? It's not really a "holiday" here but it's supposed to be when all the stores roll out the huge deals. Macy's is going to be open on Thanksgiving though. :8) Don't these poor employees ever get a BREAK?



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 16, 2013, 01:52:03 AM
Traditionally, our Black Friday (or Boxing Day) was the day after Christmas which is when all the stores roll out their deals. It seems in the past few years, they have a second sale during your Black Friday though. :P Over here Thanksgiving is the 2nd Monday in October so everyone usually gets a long weekend.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Model25FanForever on October 16, 2013, 07:16:56 PM
Black Friday= crowded malls

Black Friday is getting bigger here every year. The deals I see are better on Black Friday than on Boxing Day now compared to even 5 years ago.   

I find it ironic how the U.S has thanksgiving which is for being thankful for what you have. Then the next day or so there is Black Friday people pushing through stores trying to buy everything on sale lol.  :P


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on October 17, 2013, 05:48:41 PM
Yeah i don't get the back-to-back thanksgiving/black friday thing either lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 19, 2013, 07:24:48 PM
Well, I rewired my grandparents' vanity light today in their bathroom. The ancient thing had three bakelite sockets that were all broken and and lamps were flickering. The insulation on the wires was all cracked and stuff so we went to lowe's and bought three ceramic sockets and bought 4ft of #14 black and #14 white wire and I rewired the fixture and we replaced the 60W incandescents with 53W coated halogen GEs just like i did in my basement. Nice and BRIGHT in there now!

It's an old vanity fixture with three gooseneck lights and open bottom decorative glass shades. I needed a big wirenuts for all four #14 white wires and another big wirenut for the four black #14 wires too.

When i opened it up there was a second pair of hot and neutral wires in there that i assume have 24/7 power in case someone were to mount a vanity with an outlet on it. It was nice that the electrician took some time in laying out his work. The romex was 2 14AWG black cloth romex with (i think) rubber insulater conductors.

Regardless, my grandparents are very pleased that it works and how much brighter it is (and they save 21 watts too) and payed me with a new voltmeter, plug-in outlet tester, one of those power detectors that lights up and beeps when you stick it near live wiring, and a 175W MV lamp from Lowe's.

Interestingly, the Sylvania lamp from lowes is from June 2000! It's one of those circluar sleeves, not a box. It's a ED28 /DX Sylvania 175W MV lamp. I swear it looks Philips-made. It's says the manufacturing date right on the base. I'll grab a pic sometime. VERY dusty lamp but i cleaned it off and lit it in the R1 and it works, needless to say. Once in  awhile you'll find an NOS lamp out of no where. I bought an NOS Philips F20T12 BLB from the 90s at a Home Depot earlier this year. I saw the cool 90s Philips end caps way on the back of the shelve and grabbed it!.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 19, 2013, 09:15:28 PM
Nice, good idea on rewiring the light too instead of putting up a box store special on. Especially since it's a fairly old one from the way you described it.

Looks like you got some cool stuff too. I'm pretty sure the MV lamp you got was made by Philips too, especially if there was a date on the sleeve. It seems the Sylvania mercs from the late 90s to the early 2000s were Philips made.

Yeah, the NOS lamps sometimes pop up from nowhere lol. I scored a NOS from the 70s GE mogul three-way and a early 80s 175w Sylvania cleartop merc that way lol.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on October 19, 2013, 10:51:42 PM
yeah they didn't want a new one anyways. it's in good shape anyways so it made more sense to just fix it up.

the date is stamped on the bade, not the sleeve. it said "Mfd.0600" on the base. the etch includes some triangle icon which i understand is affilated with Philips. and the etch is all stright like the philips stch not rounded like sylvania's atch. "SYLVANIA" it italicized though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 21, 2013, 02:50:59 AM
Hmm mine had the date printed on the sleeve instead. Does yours have that signature Philips black paint on the base?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 21, 2013, 05:58:02 PM
nope and the base is aluminum too not brass. It's not the same as the alumnum sylvania bases on the chinese lamps though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on October 23, 2013, 01:17:40 AM
Hmm, you should get a pic of it then. :P I thought HID lamps always had either nickel plated or brass bases.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 23, 2013, 04:15:47 PM
it might be nickel plated... it's one of the shiney silvery bases with a round bottom and a large center contact. On the bottom of the base that curves, the standard 0123456789 JFMAMJJASOND is engraved. the newer chinese Sylvania lamps don't have this and the bottom of the base on the chinese sylvania mercs is glazed porcelain like the open rated lamps unlike the USA-made Sylvania MH and HPS lamps that have brownish/purplish/blackish glass around the center contact.

I'l get a pic soon. I've been a little busy and I go camping this weekend (going up to Mount Monadnock in southern New Hampshire. The town was still lit with incandescents last time and they were all serviced too since they all had black PCs with a very low ftc setting since it was pretty dark out and the lights weren't on yet. There were HPS M-250R2s at the signals which had the same PCs and weren't on either. There were PSMH FCO M-250R2s with the same PCs too. I guess they were testing PSMH out. I'm glad they're not going LED and are trying out low wattage PSMH lamps but I hope they don't do a mass-conversion to PSMH replacing all the incandescents because I know soon enough all those new PSMH fixtures will likely get trashed in favor of LEDs...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 03, 2013, 09:59:05 PM
Interesting rewire job! I made a few fluorescent scores lately...an INSIDE-ETCH! GE F40CW Mainlighter, a 90s Sylvania Design 50 F40, and the remains of a pair of vaportight fixtures that apparently came from the old cold storage in my town (Which burnt down like 20 years ago) that had Advance post-PCB ballasts...which didn't work.  Seems to me Advance ballasts have an Advanced failure rate! For Vince it's Universal, for me it's Advance...
And I scored a couple LOA F15T8 lamps and the remains of an LOA F15T8 undercabinet light...but it's preheat which is a score to me regardless. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 04, 2013, 05:27:09 PM
Nice score on the inside etch mainlighter! Inside etch lamps are the BEST! 5000K lamps are cool too! When you look at a 6500K and a 5000K in the same fixture in a room the 5000K lamp appears dull compared to the daylight lamp though.

Hmm I haven't worked with enough fixtures to come across a pattern of failures. The only dud I've ever dealt with was the GE ballast in the wall mount strip light on the wall at my grandpa's shop. The thing was just too old and the wires were very brittle and I just deemed it unsafe to use since it didn't appear to be potted and and it didn't work anyways.

I've been trying to get my mom to take me to the ReStore lately but we haven't had a free Saturday recently. I'm hopeing this Saturday works out and if not they're open on Veterans day (oddly enough) so next monday could work... I'll be going to the "usual" restore in southern RI this time. I haven't been there since the beginning of summer so there might be a line up of goodies for me since I haven't cleaned their shelves in a while lol. I hope I didn't miss out on anything awesome that someone else bought though like an old tulamp F40 preheater or something... That would really suck. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 04, 2013, 08:41:38 PM
Hopefully you'll find a 4-lamp one with vintage GE Chroma 50s or something...
Well you had those dud GE Bonusline ballasts too...
Any idea what Philips "C50 Supreme" is like?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 04, 2013, 11:24:24 PM
I've been meaning to ask for awhile what types of ballast buzzes you guys like and which are irritating to you.  For me I'm OK with the classic rapid start HUMMMMMMMMMM or the BUUUUUUUZZZZZ of slimlines but the high-pitched Izzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz type buzz annoys me...and personally those little preheat chokes are awful! I have a modified blacklight fixture above my computer I hacked up so a F20T12 lamp would fit and it's little "Wall-Wart" ballast is right in there in the annoying category...but that faint buzz of preheat chokes in circline adapters and undercabinet lights is annoying to me...especially if it's really faint.  Now some RS ballasts that have a loud BIIIIIZZZZZZZZ are kinda annoying IMO...you should hear some of the lights at my school!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 05, 2013, 05:46:59 PM
That would be awesome! I'll have to see what's there though.

I couldn't really tell you in words. If i heard a balalst in person I could instantly tell you if i didn't mind it or if it annoyed me. I hate the ballasts that buzz really faintly but you can still slightly hear it. Those drive you nuts cause then you're listening for it lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 05, 2013, 09:27:44 PM
Remember the rusty undercabinet fixture with the Thorn lamp? That thing is in the annoying faint izzzz category...
Also high-wattage incandescents with vertical filaments (75w and higher usually but I've seen it with 60w bulbs with vertical filaments) is that on dimmer switches dimmed way down or on modified-sine-wave inverter electricity they make this annoying high-pitched, whining bizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzziiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnggggggggggggggggggggggggeeeeeeen sound...do you know what I mean? At a friends house (Where my Electripak 175w MV yardblaster came from) they have multiple 200w incandescents on dimmers and the buzz is something else!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 06, 2013, 05:01:17 PM
Yeah my closet light was retrofitted to preheat by yours truley and it falls into the "izzzzzzzzz" category. i think most preheat chokes are like that. My closet light ballast is on the loud side though so I don't mind it. I don't like the MMMMMMMM sound of trigger start or RS or slimline ballasts though. I nice faint hum is alright but the louder MMMMMMMMM ballasts are ANNOYING! There's just a certain pitch of the MMMM ballasts that makes your ears pop and feel clogged. i don't mind the sound itself but my ears will pop and feel clogged if the ballast is the right pitch.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 06, 2013, 08:31:24 PM
Some RS ballasts can be annoying but as long as they HUMMMMMMMM they're okay with me. 
Really? I love shopping in mom-and-pop stores under buzzing F96T12 fixtures!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 07, 2013, 05:06:50 PM
Normal buzzing slimines and RS T12s don't bother me but when the ballast is obnoxiously loud it's really irritating.

Pretty soon it'll be time to take out the Christmas lights. I traditionally put them up on the long weekend after Thanksgiving. Only three weeks til Thanksgiving...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 08, 2013, 09:27:28 PM
I do it after my birthday in December...
Oh and I stuck a new lamp I was given into my yardblaster and the ballast has an interesting intermittent buzz now....like IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ------------------------------IZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ---------------------IIIIIZZZZZZZZZZ. So loud but intermittent...weird...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 08, 2013, 11:12:13 PM
sounds to be like the fixture isn't getting a clean 60Hz wave (which is understandable since you're on generator power) but if it wasn't doing it before i don't know lol. If something loose?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 09, 2013, 12:08:21 AM
For whatever it's worth on this particular generator I'm currently using (a 3-cylinder Isuzu diesel engine with a 10Kw 120/240v Stamford alternator) I'm pretty sure the hertz are off since the lights flicker slightly at a constant rate, kinda like a rectifying fluorescent but much slower if that makes any sense to you...it does make other ballasts sound interesting though...the buzz sounds "choppy" if you will but here it would buzz for like 10 seconds, then stop, them buzz again, etc. It may have been doing it before and I just never noticed, too.  I know on good pure-60-hertz-sine-wave power it just hums softly though...and on modified-sine-wave electricity it sounds like a hockey game buzzer!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 09, 2013, 03:18:05 PM
Ahh yeah I've never heard a fixture running on a generator so i wouldn't be able to relate to the flicker or ballast sounds but as long as the fixture doesn't malfunction i guess it's fine...


I went to the Restore and found quite the score! You can tell I haven't been there recently because they had an overflow of fluorescent stuff lol. I walked out with four NOS F40T12/CW lamps (three Sylvania CWP lamps from pre-2002 and one ITT lamp), four NOS F30T12/CW Sylvania LifeLines, an NOS F20T12/CW Sylvania Lifeline, and two lightly used 1996 Philips F32T8s (pre-Alto and they have the thin PHILIPS lettering so i got them). I also got a SIM-KAR F20T12 strip light with an April 1973 GE NPF trigger start ballast. It works fine and the paint is in good shape after washing it so I'll be leaving it as-is. The ballast is nearly dead silent. It lights a F20 lamp rather dimly (like any other typical NPF single lamp ballast) but it's a nice quality vintage ballast in a nice hefty guage fixture.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Model25FanForever on November 09, 2013, 05:00:11 PM
I just replaced a globe 100w light bulb on my ceiling fan and I noticed it was flickering and the filament had actually detached from the rest of the bulb. I have now put in a 60w because the 100w my dad put in was way to high.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 09, 2013, 07:19:24 PM
Ahh I have three LEDs in my bedroom light. I bought them a few years ago to test them out. They haven't died yet...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 09, 2013, 09:08:53 PM
Yeah on my other generator it acts pretty normally...but that one has an inverter output that is supposedly just as clean as utility power...
Very cool! When do you plan to visit Restore next? Personally I'd go every month or so...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 10, 2013, 01:58:27 PM
I'd like to go every month but i don't know when the next time I'll go is.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 10, 2013, 02:08:31 PM
I'd go every week or so if it was nearby...you never know what you'll miss!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 10, 2013, 07:29:18 PM
yeah I know. When I get my own car maybe I'll be able to go more often (that is if i can trust my car to take me on a 45 minute ride and back without breaking down lol). I don't know what my first car will be. I have a preference toward Chevy/GM for new vehicles since they seem very well built. Definetly don't want Ford and I'd liek to stay away from Toyota because of all those issues with the breaks going and stuff...

There were a good amount of fixtures there but only a couple of them were left from the last time I was there. If the same fixtures are still left, one has a F32T8 Sylvania ballast that i plan to buy for the ballast, one has a F40T12 HPF RS ballast (i think Advance Mark III) and there are those NOS fixtures i pulled the ITT and lifeline lamps from.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 10, 2013, 09:04:54 PM
Yeah it seems everyone's first car is a crappy one...I've never heard anything bad about toyota but FORD- Found On Road Dead...Driver Returns on Foot...you'd look silly walking down the side of the freeway with a 4-lamp F40 preheater!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 10, 2013, 10:15:54 PM
LOL i could totally picture myself carrying a fixture home. It would probably take like 6 hours to get home by foot since it's like 45 minutes going about 55MPH average...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 11, 2013, 08:30:51 PM
LOL...
I think the starter in my GE COMPAX lamp is getting slow and "Afraid of the Dark" so I'm considering sticking an incandescent or a spiral in there instead...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 12, 2013, 07:11:43 PM
ahh yeah maybe the starter is on its way out. in that case I'd retire it to display just so you can still enjoy it starting up 30 years from now.

Today i got a nice score! 16 Westinghouse F14T12/CW lamps. 16 ITT F14T12/CW lamps, and an inside etch GE F14T12/CW lamp. They all work though a good number are visably used (blackening) so I assume they are all lightly used. I don't have any F14T12 fixtures so I plan on passing some of them onto other collectors.

I also have nine electronic PL ballasts. Seven are Advance programmed start 32/42W PL ballasts and the other two are dimmable 32/42W Universal ballasts. All are 120/277V and used but look almost new.

Does anyone know if the 32W PL ballasts will run F32T8s?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 12, 2013, 08:18:54 PM
Yeah I might...nice score on those F14s!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 12, 2013, 08:26:24 PM
Thanks! check the LG for pics.

BTW, if you want one ITT and one Westy lamp I'll send you them for shipping. I don't know where you live but Anchorage came to mind and shipping to there is about $15 which is reasonable for Priorety 3-Day Delivery.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 13, 2013, 08:57:19 PM
I'm gonna have to decline for now since I don't have a F14 fixture and am unable to recieve lamps from other members for reasons I won't mention here...but if you hold on to those for a few years then I'd be interested for sure! Thanks for the offer though! ;D
BTW I live nowhere NEAR Anchorage LOL...I live in the southeast "Panhandle" close to Sitka...although of COURSE Anchorage would come to mind!  :)

Today I was at someone's house and they have a couple of those Philips L-Prize LEDs in use in can lights...very cool! They were telling me they get HOT though!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 13, 2013, 10:13:02 PM
Hmm it's still be $15 to Sitka lol. yeah i'll be keeping a good amount of the lamps so if you ever want one down the road let me know.

yeah LED lamps do give off heat. it's true that the LED diodes themselves don't emmit heat but the electrical components sure do! nowhere near as hot as incandescent or even CFL though


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 14, 2013, 09:31:11 PM
Umm...these are apparently burn-me hot!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 14, 2013, 09:53:19 PM
if you touch the heat sinks then yeah. once i touched the heatsink of one of the LEDs in my room after taking it out and it was really hot so i instantly dropped it and it survived! if you don't touch the heatsinks it shouldn't be too hot.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 15, 2013, 02:28:15 PM
Yeah...they have tons of recessed "Can" lights in their house and there's always a few fried CFLs sitting on their kitchen bar counter...
I just realized recently I have about 60 F40/F34 lamps! All the F34s are GE 34w Watt-Misers (cool white) and most of the F40s are warm white GE Mainlighters, though I have a couple cool white ones too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 15, 2013, 02:44:32 PM
Writing the above post made me decide to try that spent GE inside-etch F40CW Mainlighter I have again.  It sorta fires up on a series rapid start but isn't stable...at least on the Advance .77 amp Kool-Koil ballast that oddly enough ALLOWS rectification instead of the normal dim-glowing of spent lamps on rapid start.  So needless to say it's currently the center lamp in my 3-lamper on the Universal Therm-O-matic shunted lamp-finisher-offer-squeeze-a-few-more-hours-out-of-a-bad-bulb ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 16, 2013, 11:29:05 PM
...and I caught it's final moments on camera! It worked fine for maybe 10-15 minutes today, but made a "creaking" sound that sounded very much like fluorescent glass. (If that makes any sense). I got the idea to get out my camera to take a pic of the etch, and then it started flickering violently with a "Zapping" sound...not sure if it was from the ballast, lamp, or both), then went into swirl mode at the etch end (It was a REEEEEAAAAAALLLLLLLLLYYYY cool effect! and a little bit of swirling at the end opposite the etch.  Then it got into some violent flickering/zapping, then resigned to a dim flicker, occasionally lighting for a few seconds.  It's still doing that occasionally as I type...but the coolest part is over.  I think once I'm done posting this I'll take it out and stick in another lamp to squeeze a few more hours out of.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 17, 2013, 12:45:41 PM
Hmm odd that it allows rectification but it allows for a cool show! Hopefully it doesn't damage the balalst though and hopefully the ballast itself isn't on the way out since it shouldn't allow rectification.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 17, 2013, 03:59:13 PM
The ballast that does the rectifying is a late 70s Advance .77 amp Kool-Koil...which I tried it on first.  It's wired for two lamps just like normal.  The one that did the cool swirling was an old Universal Therm-o-Matic I have wired for one lamp since it's half-dead and won't light both. As for the Advance being on it's way out, it already is since it trips it's thermal protection after an hour or so.  But the center lamp (Usually one having the last few hours squeezed out of it) provides standby light.  (If you haven't already figured it out this is that 3-lamper I made).


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 18, 2013, 08:43:30 PM
ahh so this ballast does have issues lol. I'll take a wild guess and say it's the capacitor but i don't know  lol. if the cap is bad it won't limit the current correctly so the ballast will run hotter, thus tripping the thermal protection but i don't know if the cap prevents rectification or if it's a different component...

I found two auctions, one for four 175W MV OV-15s and the other for a 250W MV M-250A with a supposedly bad ballast. the westies are $100 each which is a little steep for a used light that's not tested aka "as is". the M-250A is an insane $140 for a light that "The internal wiring and components are in need of repair or replacement". The seller didn't post a pic of the ballast though. It's also missing the Pc receptacle though it had a /DX 250W lamp that appears to be a GE.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 19, 2013, 09:42:17 AM
If you can afford it an OV-15 would be cool!
Yeah maybe...I never thought about the capacitor.  It otherwise lights normally though and I have no way to measure the current...but it acts kinda like a LPF ballast in terms of startup and lamp EOL, but HPF in terms of brightness and if the secondary lamp is missing the primary one (Blue/red wires) will glow/striate dimly


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 19, 2013, 05:19:31 PM
nah can't afford it lol. Sounds like there's something affecting the power factor, though i don't if it's a cap. Sounds like it could be... If the PF-correcthing item is bad it's giving the wrong power factor to the secondary which might explain why it's overheating. I'll be honest and say I don't know what I'm talking about though lol. I'm just trying to find an explanation that makes sense...

If you were to bring this up on the LG you'd probably get a nice solid answer in a day or so lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 19, 2013, 09:18:55 PM
I just might try that...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 22, 2013, 09:49:16 PM
Well my computer area is now lit by the other (still 2-lamp with the Universal Therm-O-Matic ballast) fixture from my school.  The setup is pretty much a 1X4 troffer-cum-shoplight since I have suspended it with Gangion (A type of thick, heavy-duty string used for fishing gear) from the sloped ceiling.  In acutality, credit could go to someone else I know who had the (literally!) brilliant idea to suspend them.  I thought, "That's a really good idea actually!" and I plan to do the same to the other (3-lamp) one eventually.  Where that one will be going is at a right angle to this one so it'd be "flat" on the sloped ceiling but suspending is so much easier, especially when installing a light by yourself (This one already took enough ingenuity to hang and took about an hour and a half of creativity (My installations always take forever; especially fluorescent fixtures; the only time I didn't suspend fixtures was between ceiling joists in an unfinished ceiling so I stuck some 8 penny nails in the joists to balance the fixtures on while fighting with the screw gun and probably muttering profane words under my breath). But anyway back to this light...like I said it required some creativity to hang (I actually took some pictures of the light half-hung, sitting on a cardboard box, then an old Philips bass subwoofer, while I was in the process...it did look pretty ridiculous! Once I got both ends up I discovered that of course having a nice heavy magnetic rapid start ballast off to one side of the fixture affected it's balance...so then I had to take one end BACK down and move things around, then it was OK but it was out of square if you will; this light is actually a little on the flimsy side being a troffer, so I had to add some other wire (Old ballast leads actually) to the  corners in a very silly-looking way (A typical Andy install I must admit, mine always are a little bit too creative and dangerous-looking.) The worst part, I will say, was trying to install the lamps afterward...we all know troffers are a royal pain to relamp anyway, as are suspended fixtures...how about both! The current lamps are a pair of May 1979 warm white GE Mainlighters manufactured at the Jackson, Mississippi plant.  Is a lamp NOS if it has mercury condensation or is it used? (I know I've fired this particlular pair up before but do you guys think they were never used before that?) Regardless I bet they'll last for years and years in normal residential use.  The ballast is quite buzzy upon startup, getting even LOUDER at first, then quiets down.  This one doesn't do the annooying flicker thing as much on one of my generators whereas that Advance Kool-Koil flickers too much to be working under...this one flickers slightly but nothing I can't ignore.  Ideally I'll find a F72T12 slimline someday for this spot...it will fit PERFECTLY! Where the other light is going would be nice to have a F96T12 there someday.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 23, 2013, 10:36:53 PM
And I hung the other (3-lamp) one tonight as well.  With both of them it's like a car showroom or something in this room. I may add the doors to the fixtures later but I honestly like this setup better without them so far.  I also think I like the 3-lamper better as well.  Of course, I used three more warm white Mainlighters to complete the other fixture.  One of them has about had it though and didn't want to start up this time...so I suspect I may very well be swapping it for the one on the shunted ballast in the middle very soon.  I must say installing the lamps took a good five minutes! (And that light was previously an awkward PITA to relamp!) I'll post a pic of how this looks. 
I may have to get rid of the warm whites though eventually...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 24, 2013, 08:33:28 PM
i was camping this weekend so that's why i wasn't on. I saw your light mounted. Looks good! yeah troffers are a PITA to relamp lol. The newer ones you can just stretch open (i don't recommend it though but sometimes you just blow a fuse (no pun intended hehe) trying to get the old lamps out. then when you finally get the satisfying accomplishment of delamping the fixture, you remember it's time to repeat the process in reverse and you weren't paying attention to how you removed the old lamps. Then on the last lamp one of the pins breaks off and you just go " 'F' it, I'll do it some other time" lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 24, 2013, 09:10:40 PM
You had me laughing out loud at that description..."Blow a fuse"!
For me it's usually getting PO'd and managing to break sockets twisting lamps forcefully or smashing the end of the lamp on something causing a PIIIIISSSSSSSSS sound (No pun intended) as it loses vacuum blowing the phosphor off the end.
Yeah I also have that thing of now remembering how I got them out...but on these I've sorta got it down by now since I've relamped these countless times.  If you want to change the one closest to the ballast cover on one side you have to remove the other two first on the 3-lamp one.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 24, 2013, 09:29:59 PM
yeah i'm a pro at relamping my grandpa's troffers now lol. there are holes on the ends that the lamp pins fit into that let you drop the other end of the lamp out.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 25, 2013, 09:50:17 PM
Lots of things here...
Well I've discovered the dim crappy LPF rapid start ballasts also do the dim-glow thing if the primary (red/blue wire) lamp is good but the secondary one is bad or EOL...there's a story there I'll get to later in the "Relamping Stories" thread.
As for troffers, mine have holes left over from knockouts that had little screw-thread things holding the lights together in tandem...which I use for re-lamping. They also have these little slots for removing/installing lamps.
And I moved my indoor garden up under that 3-lamper tonight to get it out of the living room.



Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 26, 2013, 07:15:02 PM
well, reported the next streetlight down from me since it's cycling. I'm seeing how long it takes for them to fix it so when i report the light in front of my house I can try to plan to be around when they come to fix it. 8) Hopefully the igniter in the M-250R2 in front of my house doesn't decide to quit... The GE igniters didn't start getting crappy until the mid-to-late 90s though from what I've seen. I've seen older M-250R2s have cycling or dead lamps for years and still work with a new lamp but a lot of mid-to-late 90s to present GEs will die after a lamp cycles for too long. Here the Thomas & Betts 113s commonly get removes because they hold water badly. Most of the arms here are 1 1/4" and i guess they either had a poor bird/weather guard around the slipfitter of the linemen that installed the lights didn't use the guards because the refractors commonly have water in them. The flat door M-250R2s seem to hold water too. I guess it just collects from the rain, yet the water level never seems to rise or lower in the lights.

But yet the M-250R2s that aren't the 1992/1993 flatbottom design rarely collect water. And no OVCs seem to get water or older lights like M-250R1s, M-250As, OV-15s, OV-25s, M-400 split doors, etc. Some Cooper OVZs here installed in the mid 2000s have small amounts of water in the refractors though.

I sometimes report lights with a lot of water and say that they're cycling so that when they service the light (even though it really isn't cycling) they'll drain the water so it doesn't damage the fixture. Usually they'll just empty the water and keep the light up but I guess if the reflector gets damaged (by mold or the shine wears off or something) they replace it. I've noticed lights that are mounted under trees or in between tree branches are more likely to hold water.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 26, 2013, 09:34:10 PM
They changed some HPS lamps in the gym at school and the new ones start up orange and seem oranger while the older ones seem pinkish...less mercury nowadays? I got a couple dead lamps from there though.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 26, 2013, 09:45:36 PM
newer lamps do have less mercury. The older lamps (depending on the manufacturer) started off blue to green and look basically like a clear merc starting up. then the orange would kick in and the lamp would be a dim intense orange like LPS then once all the gases warmed up the lamo would shift to a more whiteish orange. Today's lamps start off a halogen color I've noticed and then go right to the stinky LPS orange phase then to the bright whitish orange color. I don't know if it's true or if it's just me but newer HPS lamps seem to warm up faster than older ones (and die faster too lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 27, 2013, 08:41:00 PM
The ones I saw started up with purple flashes at first then went right to orange, while the 80s GE Lulacox lamps started off greyish then went to a blue-green mercury color then went orangeish-pinkish-whitish (xenon) then to the orange, all taking about 5 minutes I'd guess.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 27, 2013, 09:55:04 PM
my Westie 70W BT25 1980 HPS lamp starts off like the first lamp you described, purple flashes and then orange. The older lamps around here are blue-green before they shift to orange like the second lamp you described and yeah I'm thinking they're GE lamps. I think NGrid is using Sylvania lamps now though since they're a lot more yellow and less orange. I personally don't like the color but they seem brighter than the "other" HPS lamps and closer to white.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 28, 2013, 04:45:05 PM
These are EXTREMELY orange...but bright.
Someone was just talking about cell phones on airplanes...ever notice as soon as they arrive at the terminal everyone instantly takes off their seat belts and there's the musak of cell phones powering up...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 29, 2013, 09:27:49 AM
the last time i rode in a plane was the summer before 5th grade (so over 5 years ago) but i believe it lol.

Also, update on my aunt and uncle's preheaters:

They didn't want the daylight Altos. My uncle said one of the switches is faulty (spring inside let go) and he hasn't really had a good look at all the wiring so he doesn't trust them anyways. He said he has one working (i don't know if he meant lamp or fixture...) and he plans to completely rewire the basement. so i didn't give them any more lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 29, 2013, 09:13:50 PM
So does this mean they're yours really soon? GOOD LUCK! I can't wait to see them restored and in use...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 29, 2013, 11:40:14 PM
eh the way things are going it could still be another year or so. I don't know. :( At least they are in a safe place where they are for the time being. i can't wait to see them when they're not tucked up between two joists so i can actually get a decent look at them. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 29, 2013, 11:53:31 PM
Yeah I know what you mean...they're probably not going anywhere anytime soon...
Yeah who knows what the top of those lights looks like! I'm guessing with that homebrew suspended ceiling they had some diffuser panels underneath the lights? I've seen that before...a suspended ceiling is installed and existing fixtures above it are turned into makeshift troffers...seems like it'd be dim and a lot of light wasted up there though. Also it was common in the 70s-80s for houses to have a setup like that in the kitchen...F40 striplights above plastic diffuser panels.  My mother's house has such a setup...I'll post a pic in a bit.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 30, 2013, 01:04:11 PM
yeah there were cut up prismatic troffer diffusers under the lights. There were even two "windows" that were on the wall between the room and the rest of the basement that used prismatic troffer lenses. It was a very crude redneck back room lol. The door has a corner carved off because there's a pipe above it that would prevent it from opening all the way. Overall, a very poorly engineered Mr. Fix-It job lol.

Yeah I've seen restaurants with the luminous ceilings. There was one place that used either daylight or 5000K lamps and it really looked nice. The rest of the lights were semi-recessed 2X2 troffers with wood trim around them. The place was originally T12 since i remember the dim flickery F20T12 and F40T12 lamps lol. When they upgraded to T8s they used F17T8s which were much brighter and instead of cool white lamps in the luminous ceiling they used daylight or 5000K T8s. The ceiling had smooth opal diffusers.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 30, 2013, 06:28:00 PM
LOL...I'm guessing there was some of that awful 70s plywood paneling in there too?
Best thing from the 70s IMO is the vintage stereo equipment and rapid start fluorescents!
There's this 1978 Sunset "Remodeling Your Home" book that features some SUPER 70s designs...it's amazing.  One of my neighbor's houses looks like that...tongue-and-groove paneling everywhere you look, red Formica countertop in the kitchen, etc.  It hasn't really been lived in for the last 20 years or so, so there's some perfectly preserved vintage bulbs in there too.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on November 30, 2013, 08:03:37 PM
yep the walls are fake dark wood lol. the ceiling "tiles" were those grayish paper-ish tackboard (not the ones made out of coark, the older paperboard type)

the house got electricity long after it was built so all the fixtures could be original and perhaps they were bought at different times or they could have been bought at a flea market or yard sale, as no two are the same.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 30, 2013, 10:00:55 PM
Just how old is this house and in how rural-ish of an area?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 30, 2013, 10:14:00 PM
 this is the street  (https://www.google.com/search?q=deanville+road+attleboro+ma&rlz=1C1TGIB_enUS516US516&oq=deanville+road&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l3.4080j0j7&sourceid=chrome&espv=210&es_sm=122&ie=UTF-8)

when they built I-295 in the 60s they actually took the house off its foundation and MOVED it to where it is now! i don't know when it was constructed though... it has horsehair drywall though if that helps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 01, 2013, 08:58:47 PM
Oh so they live in MA? I'm guessing it still isn't that fat from you though?
Horsehair drywall? Never heard of that...do you mean lath and plaster?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 01, 2013, 09:47:01 PM
yep mass but right near the RI line. a 30 minute drive from me. yea i think lathe and plaster is the same thing as horse hair plaster.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 02, 2013, 09:53:54 AM
Is the plaster applied over little strips of wood? If so it's lath and plaster.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 02, 2013, 12:04:27 PM
Back in the lath and plaster days, hair was often added to the plaster mix to increase it's tensile strength.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 02, 2013, 04:30:41 PM
yeah it's on little wood strips and yep horse hair was added in with the plaster. When was this method used? That might help you figure out when the house was built. I can always ask my aunt and uncle the next time i see them. they could probably give me a brief history of the house.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 02, 2013, 09:06:28 PM
I'm not sure when Sheetrock was invented (Much less came into wide use) but I'd say pre-1960 for sure.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 02, 2013, 10:50:19 PM
ahh well in the ballpack range i think the house is about 100 years old.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 03, 2013, 07:51:26 PM
IIRC lath and plaster was largely gone after WWII as drywall was both easier to install and took less time to install. Some 50s era plaster jobs used metal lath instead of wood lath.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 03, 2013, 08:36:51 PM
Now that you mention it I've heard of metal lath too...seems much more fireproof!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 04, 2013, 12:49:54 AM
I've seen it used quite a bit in 1950s and 1960s commercial/institutional buildings, especially on curved surfaces. Not so much in houses though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 04, 2013, 09:52:39 AM
Sounds really useful for curved surfaces...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 04, 2013, 02:47:57 PM
It seems in more modern construction they curve the drywall instead of resorting to lath and plaster though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2013, 06:33:31 PM
how do they curve it without breaking it? soaking it in water? my school is mostly cinderblock with steel ceiling joists on the inside with huge yellowish concrete panels on the outside walls, though the corners of the school (it's a square doughnut shape) are red brick). the inside walls facing the outside (so walls with windows) seem to be some sort of older style sheetrock that seems to have warped over the years, making the individual boards of sheetrock visable due to cracking along the seams. the new C2 wing is all drywall on the interior and red brick on the outside. the drywall has patches in it in the hallway from kids punching holes in it. :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 05, 2013, 10:06:08 AM
I'm not sure.
I like flat (non-textured) drywall but I must admit texturing it hides flaws.  A texture of sorts can even be achieved by painting on drywall mud with a paint roller. (Although the result isn't super-professional looking). The only texture I don't like is the "Popcorn" ceilings!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 07, 2013, 10:49:15 PM
All kinds of electrical stories to share from the past couple days...
-I scored another Norelco F40CW that appeared to be NOS.  However, I don't think it has vacuum.  (It won't even light on a F32T8 ballast with 560v OCV which will in my experience get at least some action out of anything with vacuum and at least some electrode remnants (Although a bad lamp left like that WILL lose vacuum eventually.) If I had a NST I'd try that but I don't.  Oh, well.  I have one just like it already.
-I also relamped a light at school that went out right above my head during my lunch break the other day.  I was sitting there eating my lunch when it started pulsing and then went to dim-flickering.  The offending lamp was a GE Watt-Miser. A couple days later the janitor and I stuck in a Sylvania 5000K lamp. 
-I replaced my house battery bank today. (I'm off the grid as you know.)  It was getting to the point that the batteries wouldn't last the night without them getting so low the inverter would shut itself off.  The old ones had a manufacture date of 2/11...so over 2 years of daily service...those can only take so many charge/discharge cycles.  Hope the new identical batteries will do just as well.  I'd had two more batteries to add on to the existing two but that never happened and once these started dying we just stuck those in service.  You're not supposed to mix new and older deep-cycle lead-acid batteries more than a year in age I think so after buying them this summer we decided not to. If you do it will drag the "floating" voltage (What the battery will sit at without much load when fully charged) down to the level of the other ones.  If the older ones are still healthy that will be fine but these were past their prime so it would end up ruining a brand new pair.  I've been running my generator all day since replacing them so tonight when I shut it off will be the test...we'll see.
-Here's one I'm excited about.  So my neighbor and I went over to their storage (another whole 2-bedroom house full to the rafters of tools, etc.) looking for an impact driver. While looking around upstairs I discovered...get this...a 2-lamp F96T12 slimline fixture- I've always wanted one of those.  It has a pair of 60w Sylvania SuperSavers.  I couldn't tell if they were Eco ones or not since I didn't study it very long and it was pretty dark in there.  There were also a couple LOA shoplights.  I commented, "You collect fluorescent lights too!".  I may try to get this one sometime in the future.  Assuming the ballast is rated for those 60w energy-savers I'll keep using them till they die, then go with 75w daylight or 5000K lamps.  Come to think of it, the two nearest home improvement centers I frequent (Not even all that often; a few times a year) don't sell F96T12s IIRC...at least not on display.  They could probably special-order a case for me but that might be pricy so I'll probably jus wait until those lamps die, and then the light will probably sit dormant for awhile till I come across some (preferably 75w) lamps.  I'm still kinda excited; I've always wanted one of those! If I end up with it it will go either in my room or in my garage. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 08, 2013, 10:53:50 AM
wow sounds like you had a busy last few days. to bad on the Norelco lamp. I've still never laid eyes on a norelco lamp. And to think they were made not extrememly far away in Lynn, MA. I mean, it's a good two hour drive at least but it's not like they were only made in California or some place far away. I guess Norelco wasn't a major brand here in North America until they (Philips) aquired Westinghouse in the 80s?

the campsite i was at this weekend had three vaportight F96T12 two lamp fixtures in each cabin (two cabins). all had cool white alto lamps.

you might want to get those F96T12s ASAP because i believe they're planning to fully cut them out of the equation within the next few years. i don't even know if they make the 75W lamps in any color temperature besides ~4100K. some places have stopped selling them period. Benny's (a locally owned hardware store chain) near me sells the 8ft T12s still but i don't know if they're full mercury or if they're supersavers or 75W. they also still sell the Sylvania CWP lamps IIRC and they sell F32T8s as well but they're like 4 bucks a lamp compared to 2.99 for a two pack of F40T12s


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 08, 2013, 05:15:57 PM
I went to a Home Depot this summer and they had only 75w slimlines, albeit Altos.  There were "Cool White Supreme" and "Daylight Deluxe".  I'd opt for the latter color personally. 
Yeah Norelco didn't have a very big market share it seems compared to GE and Sylvania and Westinghouse.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 08, 2013, 05:57:08 PM
 Ahh so they do still make the daylight F96T12s then? it's a shame that they're thinning our selection of 4ft and 8ft T12 lamps. Honestly I'd get the cool whites since they just seem to "match" every application better than other color temperatures. Daylight lamps get higher lumens though IIRC, at least visable lumens. They have better CRI too i think. My grandpa has a box of 60W CWX Sylvania SuperSavers at his shop but to be honest i think the Altos at Home Deopt would be better since they'd be much brighter. If he converted the slimlines to T8 with 1.15 ballast factor ballasts, the increase in the amount of light would be amazing. But I don't see him wanting to do a conversion. To be honest I think he wants to let go of the shop but he just can't let himself let go because his shop and fixing cars is everything to him.

It's nice to see all those T12s still in use but the shop is underlit with them and rather than add additional fixtures, converting the existing ones to T8 is a more economical and practical choice. Plus i'd rather convert them and keep the ballasts than see a future owner just scrap the lights and replace them all.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 08, 2013, 08:29:38 PM
I agree.  Although it can be interesting when more modern fixtures are added to the mix! 60w CWX lampa will be exteremely dim though.  I'd use them up but then I'd buy 75w CWS lamps in your case. 
Maybe if he sells the shop you could convert the lights and save the old lamps and ballasts.  I'd replace at least one fixture entirely so you have a nice 8' slimline fixture and a lifetime supply of lamps and ballasts for it!
I think the Supersavers in my neighbors are cool white and pre-Ecologic but briefly looking at them with fading daylight (It was in the evening) through the windows in a house that is unlived in and power is unavailable didn't show the details.  I'd love to get it though- I've always wanted an 8' slimline since I started  collecting fluorescents and have always kept my eye out for one.  That would make my day, along with a F40 preheat fixture.
I think DX is dimmer than D just like CWX is dimmer than CW.  I think DX at least used to be deluxe halophosphate like CWX.  IIRC the DX F40s I saw at HD had a CRI of like 83 or 87 or something.  I have no idea what the older DX was, along with the original D.
I'm also curious what the new Soft White Deluxe is like compared to WW. 
Yeah my godfather wants to put T5s up in his woodshop and I've already said if the old slimlines come down and are headed for the landfill I'd be interested. You know how they make that THUMP! sound when turned on? Six of those on the same switch scares the cr@p out of me every time I go in there and turn on the lights!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 08, 2013, 08:40:45 PM
Also I forgot to mention that I've always been a fan of the 8 footers even before I totally knew what they were.  Another favorite childhood memory that AFAIK is probably still in existence is my old neighbor's machine shop.  That place had a bunch of slimlines with the cr@ppy 60w energy saver lamps (GE-made True Value brand cool whites) and when you go in there and turn on the lights it looks like cool white firelight on the walls with all those lamps flickering and striating, even in the summer along with the THUMPhummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm when turned on.  As a kid I was so fascinated by that.  This neighbor was also into electrical and small engines and off-grid power systems and had lots of preheat CFLs back in the day.  I still see them occasionally when I occasionally drive up there to see what became of the house I lived in there (Since torn down).  I may have to mention my interest in fluorescent lights still exists (Had it as a kid in the early 2000s.) and comment on the slimlines and how 75w lamps will work so much better.  Several of the fixtures are my (oddly enough favorite since they're kinda boring) striplight style and a couple are "Troffer" looking ones IIRC...haven't been in there in a couple years.  I remember thinking the latter were preheat at one time.  Now I know those huge exposed ballasts (ballast covers were missing) to be magnetic instant-start slimlines.  I've never seen those two lit.  They also had a (MH)? lowbay in there at one point.  I saw my first EOL preheat lamp (a PL13) in that room!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 08, 2013, 09:00:19 PM
yeah he's got some of the CWA supersavers in use and they're dim and purple. they look like EOL at first, then you realize "oh it's just a CWX lamp". there were prealto 75W Philips lamps in the box too and i used those when i relamped his slimlines last year. they're at least nice and bright and full mercury. Once they're gone they're gone though. If I were to save an 8ft fixture it'd be one of the two HOs. Then maybe a slimline after that. If I were to replace the fixture i'd pay for it though since it's more than just replacing the ballast. If he wants to sell the shop he's not going to want to pay to have the lights converted and I don't want to pay for it either lol. The preheater in the bathroom is a real gem though so i'm replacing it out of my pocket (the replacement fixture was 5 bucks from the restore, a pair of 3500K lamp was 10 bucks, and the ballast was around 10-15 bucks so no more than 30 bucks total and it's got a GE ballast not an accupro or some other inferior piece of crap.

Hmm. i never noticed the THUMP when slimline turn on. I'm sure i hear it but don't think anything of it. I know slimlines like to be noisey though. Probably the noisiest fluoresent ballasts out there. I have a Philips Alto Soft White Kitchen and Bath lamp (2 actually) and they're a little more of a yellow-brown compared to /W lamps. And not pink at all compared to /WW. And the CRI is better too though because of the nature of the light your skin looks a little tanner compared to a high CRI cool white or daylight lamp.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 08, 2013, 10:10:32 PM
Were the old Philips ones pre-Epact with the F96T12/CW ordering code?
I'd save an HO light and a slimline personally...
Yeah for fixtures like the bathroom a cheap shoplight from Restore would do the trick IMO...
What slimline lamps do you plan to buy next?
Did you ever compare that Alto soft white to a 2700K CFL?


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 09, 2013, 05:32:29 PM
I don't remember. they had the sheild logo and were pre-alto. I think they were mid-to-late 90s lamps for post-epact probably. they had the bolded PHILIPS logo on them.

He buys the lamps for his shop, not me. I think the 60W supersavers are enough to keep him covered until he retires but if for some reason we need new lamps he'd get whatever is at Home Depot. Since the existing lamps are of the cool white variety he'd probably want cool white (though he'll go for whatever is cheaper).

If we do somehow end up doing a T8 conversion, we'd use 3500K slimline lamps and cool white 4ft lamps (again, only  because those are the cheapest) and they'd be altos. However, for his bathroom, i picked out 3500K F32T8 altos since that cold unpainted cinderblock bathroom with crap stuffed in every little noom and cranny for storage needs some warmth to it lol. even if the seat is cold in the winter at least the light is warm lol. he doesn't have hot water at the shop to my knowledge. the only thing that would need it would be the bathroom sink and it doesn't have hot water so guess he doesn't need it. After having the same owner since the 70s I'm sure the building has some code violations.

No haven't gotten to it yet. I completely forgot that you asked me to be honest. I'll grab a pic after supper.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 09, 2013, 10:00:19 PM
Hmm interesting...or I guess you could replace two fixtures, one HO and one slimline, with modern ones, so you'd have a couple 8 footers for yourself...
I guess even that preheater could have 3500K lamps put in...and yeah I'm sure there are code violations.
But good luck, especially that preheater!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 09, 2013, 10:40:12 PM
well the replacement 4X F32T8 8ft tandem lights are 50 bucks each at Home Depot so that'd be 100 bucks without the lamps. Meh i suppose i could stick 3500K lamps in the preheater but the cool whites in it are doing fine and don't appear to have much blackening. I think the lamps in it are GE. I know at least one is. the other might be a service long life garenteed or sylvania. i couldn't see any of the etches. one lamp lights instantly and the other comes on about 30 seconds later. it doesn't make any blinking (well none that's noticable), it just comes right on. the one that instant starts doesn't blink at all either. if it's original to the building it's from ~1940 so it could have one of those massive tulamp ballasts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 09, 2013, 11:27:33 PM
Oh wow, that's ANCIENT! I'M sure 100 bucks is cheaper than a bunch of ballasts...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 10, 2013, 07:08:00 AM
yeah! very old. :o  100 bucks would be fore two fixtures. All the ballasts for all the slimlines would be about 150-200 bucks (so still cheaper than 50 bucks per fixture). it wouldn't make sense to convert some fixtures and not all of them.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 10, 2013, 08:40:38 PM
Yeah you're right.  I'm just thinking if you really wanted a slimline or HO fixture that's what you could do...but it'd be better to replace one, convert the others, and have a fixture of each type and spare ballasts and lamps too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 11, 2013, 11:37:22 PM
I did my first vacuum-loss fluorescent EOL tonight.  I'd read on here that you can take a multitap HID ballast and use the 240v or 277v taps to get that higher voltage with the ballast wired to 120v like norma acting like a step-up transformer.  For some time now I've had a 277v Advance T8 ballast with a whopping 600v OCV.  So I wired one of the 400w MH highbay heads I have to 120v and took the "hot" for the ballast off the 277v tap, then hooked it up to the regular neutral (It's now occurring to me...is that sending 277v into the 120v neutral?) I wasn't sure how to connect it to neutral so I took my chances but ran it in series with a 100w incandescent first to make sure I wasn't wiring a direct short. Since I could hear the MH ballast buzz and the incandescent ran dimmer I knew that first test checked out OK.  I then tried the first lamp, a GE 34w cool white Watt-Miser (My preferred tester lamps).  It worked like normal and even striated a bit like it should.  I then threw an EOL F15T8 at the setup (Well, not litterally) and got about 20 mintutes of swirling and arcing.  I also turned it on and off a bunch of times (Well unplugging the extension cord wired to the MH ballast). I got some video of it but not the vacuum loss part with violent orange flashing.
Now I have an EOL Sylvania Design 50 F15T8 in there...we'll see how long that takes. (It's not running as I type). It seems to run nonviolently though...no arcing or swirling or characteristic purple glow at the "bad" end. 
I will then try some 4' lamps and see what they do.  I have a couple spent F40s I ran on that shunted Universal Therm-o-Matic ballast that I got some good action out of but they still dim-glow and still have vacuum so I want to try them. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 12, 2013, 06:22:00 PM
I thought the neutral should be zero volts... I don't know too much about the physics behind electricity (we've learned in school that it's the movement of electrons but I mean I don't know the technical information all too well). I'm good with basic wiring and stuff but I don't have the mathematical mind to figure out what's going to happen when I do an experiment lol. I just figure if I screw up the circuit breaker will trip and then I know it's time to fix something lol.

I bet it was a fun show to watch! I got to witness a GE F32T8/CW EcoLux lamp go EOL in the hallway at school a few weeks ago. One end was purple and it was flickering dimly and making a SZZZZZZZZZ sound. Kids were looking up at it like "WTF?" lol. When I came back later it was out though and its working partner was still going. My guess is eventually the lamp either lost vacuum or the ballast's thermal protection tripped and then when it reset the EOL lamp just stayed out. The EcoLux lamps never fail to impress with EOL shows lol. Philips lamps tend to just glow orangey at one end.


My dad actually asked ME if I could mount a fluorescent light or two in the garage for additional light! O_O He said we need more light out there since it's too dim out there. My brother is in Cub Scouts (I'm in Boy Scouts; Cub Scouts is bacially pre-Boy Scouts) and my parents are the leaders so sometimes they do projects in the garage during meetings and it's not really bright enough and often your shadow will block the light so you can't really see what you're doing. I'll see if I can mount a few lights in there. You'll be able to so open-heart surgery in the garage when I do the relighting project lol. The main reason there are no fluorescents in there yet is because it's a finished ceiling so I'll need to borrow a stud finder (or I can take the time and figure out which side of the junction box is mounted to a stud and mount the fixture on that one stud but even then there's no way to be positive that I followed the studd properly.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 13, 2013, 01:07:42 AM
I'm not sure.  I wish I had a Kill-A-Watt meter to see what the setup is using for power...not very much though...you can hear it in my generator when I fire that 400w MH up! Same here...but in my case if it tripped the whole house would go dark, much to the annoyance of other people, so...
Yeah I bet people had their phones out filming that thing..."Fluorescent Light Epic Fail"!
That ballast would make that BIZZZZZZ when it was arcing really bad in this case too...
I had a 3500K Sylvania Octron in my bathroom light die earlier this year with the purple glow.  I leave the light on in there a lot and I was going in and out so I didn't get to witness the very end...but like an hour later I went back in there and noticed it was out, so I stuck a pair of 34w T12 GE Watt-Misers in there since I didn't have any extra F32T8 lamps at that point.  They work fine so even though I later found a pair of T8 lamps in the trash along with that F40CW Mainlighter I have (the working one) I've left them there.  When they die I'll stick T8s back in though.
If it were me I might leave the existing bare-bulb ceramic sockets there, and tap into their junction boxes from up in the attic to run Romex to the new lights.  I would suggest mounting them perpendicular to the joists, with long enough screws to reach into the joists pretty far so they can't pull out of the drywall.  Drywall screws work just fine for this.  So you'll have the existing incandescents plus the new lights. 
A stud finder is the best way for sure although I've never used one.  Knocking on the drywall can give you a ballpark idea too, between joists it will sound hollow.  Climbing up in the attic to see what side the boxes are on is another surefire way IMO since the joists should be on a standardized spacing of 16 inches or 24 inches on center (from the center of one joist to the center of the next).  So you could measure it out from there.  If it's not enough you could screw a wood 1x... plank to the ceiling into the joists and mount the light too that.  This would be a good idea for a heavy preheater or something...
Which fixtures do you plan to use?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 13, 2013, 04:00:21 PM
I installed that 277v Advance ballast in an old ballastless shoplight I had to clean up the setup a bit.  It still requires an external 277v power supply (namely a 400w MH multitap ballast).  The shoplight sits on top of a shelf with the MH ballast sitting below it in the corner of the room, out of the way.  I might redo it so there's no open wirenut splices of 277v out in open air and shorten the cord the ballast plugs into the wall with. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 13, 2013, 06:58:05 PM
the living room is above the garage so there's no space up there to snoop around. What I'd do is install a duples outlet in the round junction box and run the fluorescent fixtures' cords into the outlet. I'd suspend the fixtures, using screw-in hooks to hold them up. I'll probably initially install the NOS Cooper Metalux F40/RS fixture, using the 34W tubes. They'll suck in the winter but since its the only fixture i feel safe using them in I'll use those lamps. Once I get the preheaters from my aunt and uncles I'll stick them in there and retire the Metalux. I don't know how many fixtures my dad would allow but I'm going to aim for three or four.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 13, 2013, 08:18:11 PM
Suspending is an even BETTER idea! With one duplex outlet you could have two fixtures, so you'll have 4 fixtures total.  
For now you could use that Metalux turret, with the 34w lamps, that other fixture from Restore with the Universal Therm-O-Matic ballast, along with it's twin until it goes to your grandpa's shop.  Then use the single-lamp WWII one for the 4th light.  When you get the preheater out of your grandpa's shop bathroom it can replace the T8-converted one.  When you get the other three preheaters they can go in there...there's 4 of those right? I'm assuming you'll take them with you when you move out though and just stick up some T8 "shoplite" fixtures that also plug in?
Oh and today one of the SP41 GE Residential Light lamps in the troffer above my computer wouldn't start up all the way.  I went to replace it and the already-broken lampholder also broke even more...so I replaced it, and stuck a better cord on the fixture cut to just the right length.  The other (new) lamp is a  90s Sylvania Workshop F40.
And that 277v Advace ballast is running a spent GE Chroma 50 right now.  This room is VERY loud with buzzing but that's because there's a 400w MH ballast acting as a step-up transformer...plus three other magnetic RS F40 ballasts running!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 13, 2013, 10:12:42 PM
yeah flush mounting is a PITA plus the fixtures are all designed for suspended mount or have suspension kits added. Yep four outlets plus there's a duples outlet up there already (for the garage door opener) which has a spare outlet. Four lights is way more than enough though. Yeah i suppose i could use those lights. the Restore Therm-o-matic shoplite is all taped up (so no bugs live in it) and is in the shed, tucked away til spring. The one that's converted to T8 isn't wired to to a cord. I could use the WWII one but the cord is litterally 3" long outside of the fixture, since i cut it just long enough to reach the junction box if the light were to be mounted right under the box, centered.

Yep, there are four F40T12 lights at my aunt and uncles house but only two of them will be mine (one's Joe's and one's Aaron's). There's also a F20T12 fixture that will be nice since I have like 50+ F20T12 lamps to burn through lol. Perhaps I'll stick a couple F20 fixtures out there for the time being.

I plan to have the two fixtures from my aunts and uncles, the bathroom light from my grandpa's shop, and I guess if I can, I'll keep the Metalux turret as the fourth unless I get another fixture.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 14, 2013, 04:01:25 PM
Yeah the Metalux turret is a certainty for now IMO...the T8 converted light could be wired to a cord, as could be the one with the Universal ballast.  The WWII one could have a longer cord installed.  The bathroom preheater would eventually replace the T8 one, and the other two basement preheaters would replace the Therm-O-Matic one and the Metalux turret.  I guess you could leave the single-lamp one or replace it with the turret so they're all dual lamp fixtures.  Or take the tulamp preheater from the laundry room and either put the single-lamper back in there or the Metalux turret...just my ideas but it's up to you of course, it's your garage. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 15, 2013, 11:42:35 AM
The WWII one is a real PITA to open up so I don't want to do any work to it unless I really have to. I could install it right under the junction box though. The therm-o-matic shoplite is in the shed and there's a few inches of snow on the ground here so i can't get to the shed anyways (well i could but it's that slushy wet crap that will paralyse my feet if i go trudging though it lol)

For now just the Metalux fixture and maybe the WWII single lamp unit will go up. I bought these really industrial hooks so really I could mount a highbay in there if they let me (which they wouldn't though) lol.


After I have all the fixtures, I plan on it being the two fixtures from my aunt and uncle's basement, the bathroom preheater from my grandpa's, and I'm leaving the fourth fixture open for whatever if I decide on having a fourth fixture installed (and they let me). Plus, the good thing about installing the fixtures with hooks and having them plug in, is that I can change the fixtures whenever I want to! (well, as long as the car is out of the garage lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 17, 2013, 09:02:15 PM
Yeah three should be enough...but I'm of the type that would have like 10 in there LOL...I have four 4' lights in my garage/workshop and there's still dark spots...a Lithiona F32T8 wraparound with 3500K Ecolux lamps, a Lithiona shoplight with one of those weird capacitive kinda-preheat-kinda-rapid-start ballasts with a pair of 1999 Philips "Home Light" 4100K triphosphor lamps that were originally in the next fixture...a 90s Lithiona wraparound that had a MagneTek LPF ballast that died...when that happened I moved the Philips lamps to that shoplight, stuck in a crappy Radionic LPF ballast from another light, and it currently has one Sylvania Cool White Plus lamp and an ACE (GE) F40CW from the early 90s.  Then there's that cool old 1970s Sears shoplight with a HPF GE Bonusline ballast and Sylvania Cool White Plus lamps. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 17, 2013, 10:22:14 PM
well the most lights i can have in there without having to add hardwiring is four since there are two fixture boxes in there and i can fit two outlets (one duples outlet) per fixture juction box so four fluorescents total which, for a single car garage, is plenty of light.

We're gonna do the project over my xmas break. I think what I'll do is install two fixtures for now (the metalux and the two lamp preheater that's now in the laundry room) and put the single lamp WWII fixture back in the laundry room until i get more two lamp fixtures.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 18, 2013, 08:46:45 PM
Sounds like a plan...or you could take that 1973 rapid start shoplight from the utility room and put it in there and stick the single-lamper in there so you have both rapid start lights there and both preheat lights in the basement...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 18, 2013, 08:50:11 PM
I'm going to leave the 1973 light where it is only because there are soem boxes right next to it so if i mounted any thother light, the fixture would be in the way. the '73 shoplite is JUST shallow enough so that the boxes just brush the bottom of the reflector sides when we take the boxes down. The way I have it mounted makes it a PITA to remove too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 19, 2013, 08:31:53 PM
Okay I see...what about that Restore light with the Universal ballast though? I'm just thinking having preheat and rapid start lights in the same room might be a little weird...but it's up to you.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 19, 2013, 10:36:50 PM
nah preheat and RS together would be cool because then you can easily compare the two.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 20, 2013, 12:21:16 AM
OK you have a point...or you and your friends could make bets with each other, "Which will light first"? Be sure to take pics, though! Preferably even a YT vid of the startup!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 20, 2013, 01:56:56 AM
Nah, get like a six lamp troffer and have ever starting method under the sun in the same fixture. Bit odd to see a fixture with preheat, magnetic RS, ,magnetic IS, electronic RS, electronic IS, electronic programmed start firing up though.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 20, 2013, 04:32:28 PM
what friends? lol Yeah, I may get a video and definetly pics. I'm going to set up the hooks so that four fixtures can be mounted well. I'm only going to install two fixtures at the moment though. The other one will stay an incandescent keyless fixture until I get another round JB duplex outlet wallplate.

lol a hexapolar fixture would be interesting lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 21, 2013, 10:24:35 AM
So two lights on just that side? I see...
Also I guess the incandescent will light as soon as the switch is flipped providing some instant light and also would help until the fluorescents warm up on a cold winter night or something. I'm sure (knowing you) it'll eventually be replaced with a fluorescent too...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 21, 2013, 03:57:42 PM
yeah they'll be mounted sort of in the middle of the garage but slightly more towards the big door (I'll have to make sure there's enough clearance between the garage door and the bottoms of the fixtures when the door is raised). The fixtures will be mounted inline with each other (not touching end-to-end but they'll be inline across the garage). I can't explain well so i'll draw up a diagram and upload it lol.

Yeah i'd eventually like four fixtures out there but i don't know if my dad will allow me. they might use "too much electricity". Eh, I'll take what i can get lol...

I was also pondering on whether to replace the M-250A in my backyard with the OVC. I don't know... I kinda miss my M-250A (LOL) but I don't know if I want to have the orangey light in the backyard. None of my fixtures have ballasts that are interchangeable (the 250W MH Advance ballast kinda fits in my M-250R1 but that's the only one that really fits) so i can't do a ballast transplant lol. I'm pretty sure the OV-10 is too heavy for the pole.

Seeing how my pole is pretty wimpy out back, I was wondering if maybe I should upgrade my pole with a more suitable one this summer... Maybe an EMT conduit pole like the one in my bedroom? I don't know....


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 21, 2013, 08:38:36 PM
I would, and/or install that Westy RMA out there. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 21, 2013, 10:11:41 PM
I was thinking the RMA but I want to light my yard not the sides of my neighboors' houses lol. I do have some custom made glare sheilds though that i can pop in there.

Then there's the fact that my RMA is in my closet because I have no other place for it. If i put it on the pole outback and take the M-250A inside, I'll need to put one of my other lights out in the shed since a cobrahead wouldn't fit in my closet. I'd probably resolve to putting the OV-25 in the shed since it's not HID right now (someday I'll try to locate a 400W MV or MH remote ballast for it).

I dunno. I don't want to stick any of my NOS lights out there so the R1s are out of the equation. The M-400A2s and OV-10 are too heavy. So that leaves the RMA, OVC, M-250A, and maybe the OV-25, though it's not HID. I suppose I could remote ballast it though for 175W MV if I can find a suitable ballast box. That would be interesting. Unfortunatly I never kept that other remote ballast box i had. i don't have the ballast either. I'm likely getting a HPS OV-15 Tudor FCO sometime next year so maybe that can go outside. I'll need to troubleshoot the fixture though as it won't light a lamp.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 22, 2013, 09:44:27 PM
Or install the RMA in the garage on a seperate switch with a newer lamp...like right over the workbench if there is one. That would be a conversation piece when people see that instead of a cheap chain-suspended shoplight.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 22, 2013, 11:28:12 PM
lol yeah my parents wouldn't allow a street light installed anywhere in the house but my room (and that was after lots of convincing lol) i don't have a workbench anywhere. we keep the car in the garage too so there's not much wiggle room. when my dad needs to do something out there he moves the car but that's not often.

i'm likely going to the restore this thursday. 8) :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 23, 2013, 08:50:45 PM
Nice! Maybe you'll find four nice 4-lamp F40 preheat fixtures for the garage for only a few dollars each!  Or maybe some older RS shoplights with GE Bonusline, Advance Kool-Koil, or our favorite Universal Therm-O-Matic ballasts!!! Or at least some cool old lamps of some sort.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 23, 2013, 10:23:07 PM
LOL that'd be nice! thanks for the enthusiasm. 8) I'm happy with walking out with a few lamps if that's all they have... i'm guessing there'll be a few fixtures. there always is... I seem to be the only one who buys them lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 24, 2013, 08:23:53 PM
Good luck! Also look for other cool non-lighting things like old radios, stereo tuners/amplifiers, etc.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 24, 2013, 08:26:56 PM
Oh and also I think my spent GE Chroma 50 on that 277v Advance electronic ballast is in it's final hours...it is now in what I will dub, "Swirly Mode". No blue glow or orange flashing yet, though.  It's pretty black on both ends and I know it sat EOL dim-glowing on HPF rapid start for a long time.   (I wonder if both ends will get that violent orange flashing LOL?)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 24, 2013, 08:45:45 PM
...and on my modified-sine-wave inverter with low line voltage (102-108v on average) it starts up kinda like a rapid start! The MH ballasts sounds like the proverbial angry hornet's nest though...I wonder if that would wake me up in the morning if it was with a 400w MH lamp on a timer?
It starts with a blue glow at both ends which then disappears.  I got a video of it doing this but I don't know how well it came out.  Sine looking right at the lamp with the camera would be deceptive on brightness I did some shots of the ceiling, etc. to give an idea of how the brightness is.  If you see the blue flash at one or both at partial brightness upon startup that's often one of the early signs of an approaching EOL...one of the 34w GE Watt-Misers in my bathroom light (on a T8 ballast) does that sometimes now.  A lamp on magnetic rapid start that has a broken cathode or doesn't have both pins inserted all the way can do that too...I had a GE Mainlighter do that once and I couldn't figure out WHY for the life of me at first!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 24, 2013, 09:40:34 PM
ahh EOL shows are always cool. I've only seen one decent EOL show and it was at school a couple months ago.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2013, 02:14:46 PM
I've seen a few fairly spectacular ones but the best was that Lights of America F15T8/CW I finished off recently...I have lots of EOL 4' lamps to fry though. (They won't light, or rectify on rapid start anymore but will on an electronic instant-start ballast)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 25, 2013, 09:15:22 PM
I went to my aunt and uncle's house today (the ones that have my aunt's mom's house attached with the three preheaters in the garage).

It turns out there are THREE MORE preheaters that looks exactly the same in the basement! One had TWO cool white Duro-Test lamps! The other has two Westinghouse F40/CW lamps. The last one was lampless but had two lamps leaning up against the wall, a Westie F40/CW, and a GE 34W red-etched MISER lamp. Not a watt-miser, just miser...

When were the lamps marked "MISER"? The wattage isn't big either, just a small 34, though the lamp is red etched. I'm guessing 1980s?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2013, 10:28:25 PM
Nice! Are they Powertwists?
The "Miser" is a warm white lamp I think...try lighting it (albeit briefly in the preheat fixture). Did that Westy look blackened? I'm wondering if that Miser cooked that preheat ballast?
Try to get those lights someday!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2013, 10:31:26 PM
Forgot to mention...yeah that'd be an 80s GE lamp.  It was marketed toward residential use. 
I added a second lamp to that lamp-fryer shoplight...I wired it in paralell and startup is unpredicaable! Sometimes one lamp, sometimes, the other, sometimes both (albeit at reduced power) A lamp about to lose vacuum will not get the full zap with both lit.  With just one going a very spent GE Mainlighter lasted like 10 seconds! Another didn't last much longer (albeit an inside-etched 1976 cool white one but it was EOL so what the heck I guess) I have another GE Chroma 50 swirling away with both going as I type.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 25, 2013, 10:55:45 PM
Nope normal F40/CW tubes with GE endcaps. They aren't blackend when they're off but when they're on they are blue-gray on the ends. I don't know if the Miser lamp was a warm white... I didn't check the etch very well i guess afterall lol. I guess i automatically assumed it was cool white... the westy had some visable blackening but didn't look EOL. She said the lamps fell over (but they didn't appear to have any physical damage on the outside) so i don't know if they work. The Miser lamp looked to have pretty low hours.

The fixtures down there are the same as the ones in the garage but the ones down there looked to be in much better shape. I doubt the miser lamp cooked the ballast since those things are pretty tough and since the Miser lamp has little blackening, it likely wasn't used long enough to really damage the ballast (though i know dead fixtures often have the tubes intentionally removed so who knows...) since you know how fast GE lamps tend to blacken...

ahh Andy the lamp killer doing his work eh? (lol just kidding). i'm debatign wether or not to spend $40 on a box of 10 Sylvania Design 50 lamps. i head they're the best F40T12 lamps on the market nowadays but 40 bucks for 10 lamps is a little steep for me. I have plenty of giftcard money for lowe's but i don't know if i want to blow most of it on 10 lamps...

Yeah i'd like to get all six of those fixtures. The three in the garage are in rougher shape and they have replacement fixtures still awaiting installation so i can get those with no penny no harm (if i can get permission, which should be easy). The three in the basement I'll need to buy replacement fixtures for and T8 lamps to go in them. I'm sure something at the restore will pop up though that i can pop in as a replacement.

For the time being, the three lights out in the garage are all still going string with the new lamps and starters. the ones in the basement all work with the lamps that they have (well i dunno about the lampless one but i have no reason to doubt it)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2013, 02:42:53 PM
okay at the restore today there was really nothing much there. it looks like someone grabbed everything but a couple things. i ended up getting a 4X F20T12 fixture with one of those white puff diffuser things. the ballasts are 1994 Magneteks and are dim as all hell. i also bought a 4X F40T12 fixture for the nice two rapid start ballast. then i get home and find one four lamp F32T8 ballast inside it. >:( it came with four F40T12 lamps, 3 of which are dead. the F20 puff fixture came with two sylvania cool whites.

So for ballasts i have a 4X F32T8 Advance and a 2X F32T8 Sylvania today. For lamps I brought home the two Sylvanias (one won't start in the 4X f20 fixture but will start ad flash in a single lamp strip). I also got a GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC F40CW lamp that was dead through and through (has a ball shaped group of cracks near the electrode). I also got two GE F40/CW RESIDENTIAL LIGHT lamps. Can those be used on full power ballasts? One of them is totally dead. And lastly i got a F40/CW HOME LIGHT Altolamp from 2005 that's pretty dead. It's not entirely dead but it won't light up for the most part. the etch end with the electrode guard is blue when lit and the lamp is black on that end.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 26, 2013, 05:14:12 PM
Yeah, those LPF two lamps F20 ballasts are notorious for underdriving lamps. If you can find it, the HPF versions are much better but I don't think two would fit in a 2X2 fixture. 4 preheat ballasts should fit though and then you get the bonus of watching four tubes startup.

Another option would be to retrofit to T8 using the four lamp ballast you also got.  Was the four lamp fixture a newer or a older fixture.

IIRC F40 Residential Light tubes are just rebranded SP 41 tubes so they should work on full power ballasts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2013, 06:05:49 PM
yeah the HPF ballasts are much better but they wouldn't fit. preheat would be cool but there aren't enough KOs for starters. how dare you suggest instant start HF T8. :P lol. the 2ft fixture has ballasts that date to September 1994 and the 4ft fixture is a lithonia that looks to be factory T8 though it could easily be converted to T12 since it has two ballast mounts and a full sized ballast channel (which is why i thought it was T12, especially since it had T12 lamps. i didn't think to check the ballast :8) ) the fixture was warped though so i'm not keeping it. the sockets are shunted sockets. I'll keep them though.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 26, 2013, 08:59:57 PM
Oh well.  What about using it to replace a preheater somewhere? Just a thought...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2013, 10:02:47 PM
using the 2ft fixture? Nah It's a cool light so i'd like to keep it. i'll use it someday... it'd make a good kitchen light down the road maybe at my own house...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 26, 2013, 10:19:36 PM
I meant the 4-lamper.  I know it lacks a diffuser but that'd be fine for a garage or something.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2013, 11:54:52 PM
ahh. i guess i could've. i had to fold it up so it'd fit in the recycling bin. I try to fold up the lights i get rid of so they'll fit in the recylcing since i'd hate to see the metal end up at the dump instead. i kept the ballast and sockets though.
'v


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2013, 01:22:58 PM
Ahh okay...I've also gutted lights for parts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2013, 02:40:42 PM
today i replaced one of the keyless ceramic sockets in the garage with the duplex outlet. I also located the studs and figured out how I want to arrange the two lights. I'll post a drawing of it on the LG later today.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2013, 04:04:42 PM
Which is going up first? The turret light I assume? Most importantly...have fun! Remember you telling me that when I was restoring that Sears light? (Well it still needs a paint job but I got rid of 15 years worth of sawdust and rust).  But it's okay to mutter profanities when trying to mount a heavy, awkward light by yourself, then having it swing around on it's suspension setup trying to install lamps praying it doesn't fall on you...I know the feeling all too well.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2013, 04:09:22 PM
Yep the Metalux turret will be going up and the F20T12 reflector style industrial will be going up too (the chain on it is long enough so that i can stick the hook in 4ft apart and still use the 2ft fixture until i get another 4ft fixture although it will look weird lol)

Man that alto is hanging on for dear life. it won't quit! just keeps flashing. the etch end is purple at the moment and that end is getting really black too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2013, 05:25:12 PM
well, Mr. ALTO died. I had to use the bathroom so i unplugged it and when i came back i plugged it back in and it flickered for a few seconds than got orange and then the center of the tube went magenta then the whole tube went magenta then the whole tube went dim, then it went out. if i stick the etch end on the red ballast lead the other end glows dimly though so still not totally dead yet!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2013, 08:28:23 PM
Sounds like it got contamintated right at the end. Maybe air is getting in but not enough to make it lose vacuum? Sometimes turning it on and off will make it do that.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2013, 09:11:52 PM
Well, the warm white GE Mainlighter is in swirly mode now and the other lamp is lighting too.  I got some nice purple glowing, a bit of orange, then the other lamp lit.  I could even sorta see the electrode melting down.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2013, 09:26:08 PM
yeah i dont know what happened. it was a decent show though...

How do you know if the electrode melted down? I wonder if the Alto did that... The other end's electrode most still be intact since it dimly lights if the etch end is on the red wire. I put it out with the trash though... I posted pics on the LG.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2013, 10:11:03 PM
Well I've heard that and sometimes the phosphor will blow off making the carnage inside obvious. 
I burned by thumb on the pins of that Mainlighter (It finally died) shoving it down into the spent lamps box.  Now there's a Residential Light in there that swirled at first but has since calmed down.
That Mainlighter made the most AWFUL smell when it died! Hot, acrid melting glass I guess.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2013, 11:01:04 PM
i think the phosphor blows off the end when the lamp loose vacuum, as the inward rush of air blows the phosphors off the inside of the tube. This lamp didn't loose vacuum though i remember a lamp in my grandpa's basement did and about three inches of one end had no phosphors. it was a full mercury unbranded Philips Econ-o-watt.

ouch! be careful!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 28, 2013, 02:44:46 PM
There's a pic in my gallery somewhere of a 34w cool white GE Watt-Miser I hit on a pipe wrench by accident that cracked and lost vacuum! It was kinda cool looking so I took a pic of it and posted it.
Maybe yours did lose vacuum but it's arcing for some other reason in there? Only way to tell would be a NST or something...which neither of us have.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 28, 2013, 03:34:49 PM
yeah i remember seeing that pic. Yeah I think we've all broken a fluorescent lamp or two over the years lol. And we're stil alive and well! yeah the only way i'd have access to an NST would be to take apart my microwave and my parents would murder me, bring me back to life, and murder me again lol. Plus i don't even know what i'd be looking for inside the microwave... all i know is that an NST is a high voltage transformer to generate the microwaves....

BTW, i went to Benny's today and the Sylvania CWP lamps are all gone. :( I bought a pair of 87CRI CWX lamps. they have that stupid dim flickery start up issue that the CWP lamps had. I'm starting to think that these lamps are eco lamps but they're just not marked as eco. they raised the price to 3.99 for a two pack.

They also had F40T12/ WHITE DELUXE lamps for $4.99 per lamp. I was going to but one but i like to buy lamps in pairs since all but one of my fixtures are 2 lampers and i hate mixing lamp brands and color temperatures. I'm guessing the white deluze would be similar to a 3500K lamp?

The CWX lamps i bought aren't dim and purple though. They actually look like a cross between cool white and 5000K. they're not that dim either.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 28, 2013, 04:46:02 PM
Actually, scratch that about the CWX lamps. After lighting them again, they're indeed excellent lamps! They were jsut dim and flickery on the first start but on the second they started right up! And they're not really bluish. I had a 3500K lamp running at the same time so they appeared bluer. I took the Sylvania CWX lamps into the utiltiy room and put on of them in the RS fixture with one GE cool white EcoLux and they're identical in color appearance and brightness.

These new 87CRI CWX lamps are really great lamps! I was expecting to be disappointed with dim purplish lamps but they're really great lamps! They're rated at 2150 lumens versus the 3000 lumens of the 70 CRI CWP lamps. Sort of a dip in light output but the GE lamps are rated at 2100 lumens... the package for the 4100K GEs doesn't have the CRI though. ???  My 3500K GE ecolux lamps are 78CRI and are rated for like 3175 lumens. They're BRIGHT!

So yeah I'd say the Sylvania CWX 87CRI lamps are a good buy. The only downsides to them is that one of them has mis-aligned endcaps and they both have a bunch of loose "stuff" inside the tube.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 28, 2013, 06:56:39 PM
Interesting! White deluxe is 3500K, yes.  Are you planning to get some of those?
Shame you can't buy the "Daylight Full Spectrum" lamps in a 2-pack there...I think they're just a Design 50 with a more intuitive name.  Or did I clear something up?
Can we see a pic of the etch of those 87CRI lamps?
The one CWX lamp I've ever bought and installed is rather dim and pinkish-purplish.  I honestly wasn't too impressed at all.  But then again it's next to 6500K Sylvania Octrons. I should've bought a "Daylight Full Spectrum" lamp (5000K 90CRI) in hindsight but I only needed one, not a pair, and it's in the engine room on my boat where CRI and overall pleasant-ness of the light isn't critical, so...It's a Sylvania-made "Buyer's Choice"
Do you have the package for both the 4100K and 3500K GEs? Did you buy the 4100K ones after July of 2012? If so they might be the new ones...since triphosphors are so expensive I wonder if GE did the Sylvania thing and just went back to deluxe halophosphate 89CRI CWX?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 28, 2013, 08:36:55 PM
i'd like to get some of the /WX lamps but they're 4.99 each so i'll pass on that. I can get two 3500K GEs for 9.98 with a giftcard at lowes instead. they were also selling single F40T12/CWX for 4.99 each which is really odd seeing how they were selling identical lamps in 2-packs for 3.99 a PAIR versus 4.99 EACH. odd or what? ??? :8)


Wyeah my grandpa (with the reflector industrials in the long narrow garage) has a couple Sylvania CWX lamps and they are dim and purple. They look like F40s on a NPF ballast even though they're being run on a full power ballast.

i saved the lamp info from the packages. the 3500K lamps came in the old style packaging and the 4100K lamps came in the new style packaging. I think the lamps were bought within a couple months of each other so they're about the age of when GE switched to the new style packaging (which i hate BTW. the new style packaging is too vague with lamp life in years vs hours, no CRI listing, etc.) they're F40T12C41 EcoLux w/ StarCoat, IIRC... I'm pretty sure they're triphosphor.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 28, 2013, 11:32:16 PM
Yeah C41 is the new cool white.  If you like 6500K lamps then look for some CX65 "Active Spaces" GEs.
I dislike the new GE packaging in general personally.
If you find yourself buying 8' slimlines for the lights in your grandpa's shop that aren't Philips I guess GE has some new "HL" (High lumen) 60w energy savers in the normal 3000K, 3500K, 4100K, 5000K, 6500K, etc.
Even if you have "enough" lamps it doesn't hurt to expand your collection of new, modern lamps too!
From what the stores here sell I'd buy Sylvania "Daylight Full Spectrum" or GE "Active Spaces" or "Sunshine" lamps since I really like Daylight lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 28, 2013, 11:47:01 PM
i don't know.. daylight is rather blue for me. ill have to try out 5000K though. high lumen 60W F96T12s? is that an oxymoron? lol do they get more lumens than a 75W lamp?

yeah they change the F40T12 lamps so much every time i go to the store to buy them they have something new lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 29, 2013, 09:14:42 PM
I doubt they're brighter; I'd never BUY 60w energy savers anyway, but I'd take them if they were free.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 29, 2013, 09:57:09 PM
yeah they're probably brighter than those older purplish Sylvania CWX 60W SuperSavers though lol.

same here, i wouldn't buy them at full price. Actually, since i don't have an 8ft fixture i wouldn't buy any F96 lamps...

The only time a buy any energy saving lamp is when it's either vintage or cool looking (those Philips 1997 Econ-o-watt lamps i grabbed have my favorite etch and the red etched 34W GEs are vintage so i got them).

I saw a F34T12 black-etched Watt Miser GE with the meatball logo at the restore but i didn't grab it since it wasn't anything interesting and i have enough of those 34W lamps as it is (only 5 but that's too many lol) And I'll have six 34W lamps when/if i get those preheaters from my cousins' grandma's basement and garage. I'll go for the ones in the garage first since they're simply suspended and the new fixtures and lamps are out there plus there are windows out there so i can take them down without setting up any work lights. So basically an infant could replace them (well not really; you know what I mean though). The ones in the basement are drilled right into the subfloor (since the ceiling is low down there i guess he didn't want to mount them to the joists or suspend them).

So since they're flush-mounted I'll need another person to help me remove them. Also one of the lights relies on its pull chain as the only switch so i'd need to shut off the breaker for the lights (which could kill power to the whole basement since older houses tend to have the breakers wired by room, not separete breakers for outlets and lights, which is required new electrical work since if you overload your outlets, having the lights in that room isn't going to help you in anyway. In my house my room and my brother's room share a breaker for the outlets and lights and my parents have their own. the downstairs lights have their own, the downstairs outlets have their own, the basement itself has its own subpanel in the utility room (main breaker is in the garage)

so getting the downstairs lights will come after the garage. When I get the ones in the garage I'll get my investment back too (the Sylvania CWP 70CRI lamps and the new starters). So in a way those lamps are just in "storage" in the fixtures since my uncle only uses the lights for a couple hours a month in the summer when he cuts the grass (the ride-on mower is in there). He doesn't cut the grass too often. Maybe once or twice a month... we cut ours once a week in the summer then we do it every other week to every two weeks when it gets cooler out since it doesn't grow as fast.

their ride-on doesn't like to always work so when he actually has the time to cut the grass between jobs it doesn't always cooperate. But anyway, so yeah the CWP lamps i installed probably still look like new. I wrote the installation date on them (my brother's birthday, 10/14/12) but that will rub off with hot water and a sponge since sharpie isn't permanent on glass.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 04, 2014, 08:23:05 PM
My dad discovered today that apparently gasoline will dissolve Sharpie or similar permanent marker writing...a borrowed generator from a relative had their name written on it and he spilled some gas filling it, went to wipe it up, and it wiped right clean off like it was never even there!
I'd still get 34w lamps at the Restore if they were anything interesting...like a Daylight, Warm White, or Lite White 34w red-etch GE Watt-Miser or one of those funky Westy Econ-O-Watts...
On a full power ballast your CWX lamps are probably nice and bright but mine is on an Advance electronic rapid start ballast (2-lamp wired for one, the wiring is identical to a magnetic RS for 2 lamps) and I forget what the line current is and therefore what sort of ballast factor it's getting...and then again it's next to 2-lamp fixtures with 6500K F32T8 Sylvania Octrons as well as one light with 4100K Octrons.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 04, 2014, 08:56:16 PM
yeah i think sharpie can be partly washed away with hand sanitizer/rubbing alcohol.

I think the 34W lamps were only ever made in cool white and warm white (though GE had their funky "lite white" version too). I'm not sure why they were only made in those color temps though, a daylight one would be really cool!

Yeah I don't care what kind of lamp it is, if it's under 4ft and it's a vintage looking lamp (like 70s or earlier) then I'm buying it lol. I bought two 30" F25T12 Sylvania lamps at a TrueValue and they both turned out to be from 1962! :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 04, 2014, 10:20:54 PM
GE made Daylight Watt-Misers, I've seen them on here and LG.  IDK about Philips/Westy though.  I once saw a pair of Philips pre-Alto 34w Lite Whites in use. 
True Value and Ace often have vintage lamps, especially in those odd, non-standard, unusual sizes, obviously they aren't bought very often!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 04, 2014, 10:58:07 PM
hmm interesting. i didn't know that they were made in daylight. i thought lite-white was a GE exclusive but i guess not.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on January 05, 2014, 05:23:52 PM
Well, I got four 5000K GE tubes. I like the color but not enough to spend 40 bucks on a case of ten (yet I spent 20 bucks for four of them. go figure...) The GE ones are rated for more lumens which is why I bought them over the Sylvania ones. I didn't really notice a huge difference between the 90 CRI of these and the lower CRI of other lamps though. I don't think CRI is really important in a basement or garage anyways...

Do they make any fluorescent lamps with CRI higher than 90?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 23, 2014, 10:30:50 PM
I think I've seen like 95CRI before...
I recently went down to CA and went Restoring but didn't buy anything, though I went with the relative who has the M-400A and we found some F96T12 ballasts for lights in his shop, one of which was a NOS Jefferson with full-length RUBBER-coated wires! The case was white, too, although the back (The part that would have a date code stamped on it and the flanges for mounting) was black.  It was full-power at 1.45 amps! Let's just say even those 60w GE Watt-Misers are brighter in that light and warm up faster! I don't think they're ideal for a ballast like that though.  We also bought an Advance electronic one and he installed it after I left but he said he likes it a lot and the lamps don't stritate.
I also fired up their old Regent yard light with the Westy Lifeguard lamp.  It's not SUPER bright but that might also be due in part to the extremely dirty refractor.  There's a couple defunct wasp's nests in there too.  It buzzes REALLY loud at startup (But not as loud as a GE M-1000 that's been lit every night for 50 years).  Then it quiets down once the lamp is completely warmed up but then the buzz fluctuates and the lamp flickers occasionally...any idea why? Is this vintage Westy on it's way out? It's still quite bright for being at least 30 years old, although it's rarely used...I may be the only one who ever turns it on!
AND, while driving around that area at night, multiple HPS streetlights went out (cycling) as we drove under them! We were wondering if I was "electropathic".


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 24, 2014, 06:32:57 PM
wow 95CRI is quite impressive! I'm perfectly fine with 60 CRI though lol. I'm very light-skinned so the lower CRI fluorescent lamps make my skin look a little tanner (well more like yellower but it's better than looking like a snowman with a pinkish tone lol). I like the 5000K 87CRI GE sunshine lamps i bought but MAN i look like i had my blood drained from me when i'm under them lol. Right now they're not in use though. I still have the 3500K and 4100K GEs in my F40s (and the 34W Philips lamps in the garage)

wow that ballast sounds awesome! Did he let you keep it? Jefferson and Robertson made some really cool and unique ballasts and they were built VERY "tuff" lol. yeah the electronic slimline ballasts don't let the lamps striate which is good. I'd imagine they work the lamps harder too.

Yeah residential grade MV yardblasters tend to buzz like beehives themselves after year of service lol. A lot of the time though when a fixture is loud it's the fixture itself, not the ballast. Cobraheads are especially known for because the fixture is held shut by a latch, which is looser than a screw meaning the fixture vibrates. The door vibrates, the reflector vibrates, the refractor vibrates, and even the arm can contribute a little bit when it comes to noise too all from the ballast vibrating.

Yep all balalsts (well reactors and reactance ballasts, which are simple ones with no capacitors) will start off loud and high pitch and then tone it down a little. Once the ballast stays the same pitch and loudness the lamp is fully warmed up. Yeah my lights will do that when they're mounted on the stand inside my room but now otherwise. My guess is inconsistance line voltage. Ideally, HID lights should be on their own circuit (multiple HIDs can be on the same circuit but that circuit should ideally be designated for lights since other electronics or applicances can "pollute" the line voltage). The lamp is fine though. HID lamps will sometimes flicker randomly, i guess some are just less resistant to line voltage fluctuations.

Yeah the lifeguard lamps don't blacken as much as lamps without the special coating. try to peek at the arc tube and see if it's blackened at all. I have to say, even though the Sylvania Eco HPS lamps look like they're overdriven and i don't really like the yellowertint to it, they seem to be brighter and it's easier to see under them compared to other HPS lamps. I guess it's the same with their mercs. The /DX mercs are all pinkish but the light they emmit is superior to any other MV lamp.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 27, 2014, 09:06:31 PM
Same here, except for a few situations...but it works fine for most.  Where did you try them? Just wondering...
No, we installed it in a (90s vintage?) Thomas Lighting (never heard of that company before) F96T12 striplight.  They're nice fixtures IMO, with sectional ballast covers (2-4' sections) and endplates that half-cover the sockets.  I will post pics later.  I did suggest putting 75w lamps in that fixture though since 60w energy savers might make it overheat and quit.  I don't think it was even Class P! (I don't think there was any class-P warning to disobey on that light though).
I bet the EOL show would be good with those electronic slimline ballasts, no rectifying to cook a ballast, just vacuum loss!
I saw a vid someone posted on LG of their neighbor's angled-lamp yardblaster light with a mysterious "rattle" like a screw was loose somewhere or something...or maybe the arc tube frame in the lamp? It also buzzed loudly...I told you about mine with the weird oscillating buzz-quiet-buzz on one of my generators whose hertz seems a little off (lights flicker continuously).  This one was on a shed subpanel which was hooked to the shop subpanel (the building with the slimline lights) which was hooked to the meter box for the house.  (Shed and shop were both free-standing outbuildings with underground wiring).  This /DX wasn't pinkish except for the first 30 seconds or so of warmup from switch-on, it was a soft greenish-white but not as harsh as a clear lamp or as green.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on January 30, 2014, 06:02:17 PM
yeah most 8ft fixtures have tandem sections made up of two 4ft channels. Whenever I get new lamps I generally test them in my 2X F40 1950s long john preheater from my aunt and uncle's basement. I always test with preheat if i can (to ensure the filaments at the end are fully intact, as the lamp will still light on RS as long as one is good but with oreheat you need a complete circuit.

Before i got my 2X preheater i used the single lamp one from my cousins' grandma's garage (and that light coincidentally was also mounted in the utility room at one point but right not it's leaning against the wall vertically in the utility room with the other uninstalled lights and my second stash of lamps (since i don't have room for all of my fluorescent lamps in one place)

I have that case of 30 80s Sylvania /WW F20T12s (with one 90s 3500K Sylvania in the box) behind the couch in the basement since the couch is kiddie cornered, leaving storage space behind it. My F40T12 lamps are in a box that holds 24 lamps in the laundry room. In a second box i have my four 70s F30T12 Sylvania lamps, the 30" 60s F25T12 lamps, and my two 90s F32T8s. My three AGRO-LITE lamps are in their own box that hold four lamps. My case of Sylvania DSN50 lamps are in their case in that spot too. In the utility room i have my other F20T12 lamps in a box that hold like 24 lamps. And i have four F40T12 lamps (3 Sylvania CWP Buyers Choice and an ITT CW)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 08, 2014, 04:29:54 PM
Most of mine are in my attic but a few lamps are in my room...like less-than-4' ones.
So you do have some Sylvania /D50 lamps now? I put the pair of Chroma 50s and the Design 50 I have in that 3-lamp fixture I have and it's a really "cool" effect!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 08, 2014, 08:37:31 PM
Yep I have a total of 14 5000K F40T12s. Ten Sylvania DESIGN50 and four GE 87CRI Sunshine lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 08, 2014, 09:52:16 PM
Very "cool!"
I just joined the Flickr page...I'm May1977GEF40CWMainlighter there FYI...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 08, 2014, 10:44:23 PM
lol

ahh well welcome aboard!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 09, 2014, 12:50:40 PM
Yeah, I think I'll post some pics on here still but when they get old and not viewed very much I'll move them over to Flickr...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on February 09, 2014, 02:56:15 PM
Sounds good.

when I went to the restore last week I got a Lumatech PL13 preheat adapter with the lamp. They still have a bunch of the 5W PL adapters but the light those give of is really useless lol. Plus there were no 5W PL lamps there. The PL adapter with the lamp only cost my 25 cents too! I love those PL13 adapters. The bottom is stamped 3988 so i assume that means "39th week of 1988". It came with an OSRAM Double DULUX USA 13DTT/27K ux2 lamp (2700K 13W PL13). The lamp appears to be new or with low hours.

The 5W PL adapters are all new and apparently they came in a case since they're all stuck to a sheet of cardboard with holes in it that they "screw into".

I'm going over my grandpa's tonight for his birthday so i'll see if any of the troffers need new lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 14, 2014, 11:37:58 PM
Nice! When I went down to CA last I went Restoring that one time where I found the slimline ballasts and passed up some PL13 stuff...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on February 15, 2014, 02:18:45 PM
I'm hopefully going back to the restore this week and if so, I'm going to get a square fake wood paneling box fixture with a opal drop dish lens that has two circlines in it with (i think) a blue-labeled therm-o-matic ballast. I passed it up last time since I have a lot of fluorescents already but I firgured I could use it somewhere down the road lol. If it's still there I'll get it. there were also three F30T12 strips. I might get a couple of them. I'll replace the undercabinet light with one and get rid of the undercabinet light since it's missing the diffuser.

Maybe the other one I'll chop down into a F25T12 30" fixture and make a fixture for my Sylvania F25T12 lamps. That's is they're still there...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 16, 2014, 01:15:46 PM
Yeah you could moddify that undercabinet light...or a strip, they can be chopped down easily although I've personally never chopped down a fixture...I've considered taking one of my defunct shoplights and making a 36" fixture though.
Good luck! Maybe you'll find a case of NOS /C Lifeguards or something!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 16, 2014, 03:43:33 PM
Nah I'll just chuck the undercabinet light (but keep the sockets and ballast). That's if the F30 strip lights are still there.

I'd still need to buy a F25T12 ballast and starter though since they use unique starters and ballasts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 19, 2014, 10:32:59 PM
Yeah...or take a strip, chop it down to 33" and use an incandescent lamp as the ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 20, 2014, 04:05:56 PM
well the 3ft strips were gone. :-\ so was the circline fixture, which is a little mad at myself for... I did manage to find a 1X2 F20T12 TS fixture that is the same exact style as the circline was and it was all sticky too. Would have been nice to have both fixtures but oh well.

BTW, that fixture came with... guess what... TWO NORELCO COOL WHITES!!!!!! They're two different types and one has a broken filament so only works on TS but the second tube works great on preheat or TS and shows little use.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 22, 2014, 12:35:07 AM
Yay! I love Norelco fluorescents! Post pics of them!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 22, 2014, 04:15:07 PM
I did. Check the LG...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 23, 2014, 06:24:23 PM
I added a starter to my quasi-preheat F40 shoplight today and got to witness a 4ft lamp firing up with blinking and clicking for the first time ever in person. Since it's a FS-2 though it's picky about which lamps it will start properly...some just keep blinking.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on February 23, 2014, 07:07:54 PM
Ahh Yeah preheat startup is always nice when you see it for the first time. Sometimes though the lamps will instant start if you have a quick starter. I've never tried an FS-2 starter in a F40 fixture though, but I've tried an FS-4 in a F20 fixture and nothing happens. On a F13T5 fixture, an FS-2 starter will work but you need to remove the starter after it lights or else it will endlessly cycle.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on February 28, 2014, 11:26:15 PM
Seems to be the case here...or since I hardwired it loosen the lamp slightly so both pins don't make contact.  Sometimes it'll instant start anyway with 277v OCV.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 01, 2014, 12:43:03 PM
I had to relamp that three lamp halfpiper F20 in my grandparents' basement. I replaced the Value Bright F20CW and Hubbell FS-2 NEO-START with an OnGuard starter and a GTE/Sylvania /WW lamp. My grandma loves the warmer (tanish-pink" light fron the /WW lamp. I can get the Value-Bright lamp to light in my F20 PH udnercabinet light but it flickers, almost like rectifying but not quite. the Neo-start starter is rather picky. I removed the capacitor from the starter and it will start a GTE /WW starter with no problem but it refuses to start either one of my ValueBright tubes. I
ll have to try other lamps when i get a change... The ends of the lamp glow and flash a little and that's it... The GTE /WW glowed steadily at the ends and then came on. Deos that every time. I think the starter is just weak now...

Hubbell NeoStart starters must have been EVERYWHERE here because it seems all my relatives with older preheaters here all have at least one NeoStart starter. My cousins' grandparents has FS4 neostarts, my aunt and uncle have a mix of Vicron and NeoStart, and my dad's parents had a FS2 Neostart in their halfpiper. BTW, the other two lamps are mid-2000's Sylvania F20/CW Canadian lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 01, 2014, 06:44:55 PM
I thought you put a GE EcoLux in that light too at one point? But cool! (or, rather, warm!)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 01, 2014, 10:14:04 PM
Nah I had wanted to use an EcoLux but it was too long to fit in so I had opted for a lightly used Sylvania cool white instead. Both Sylvanias are coincidentally from 2005 (the first number/second digit of the date code is the "5" on both lamps, indicating 2005, but that's all i know about Sylvania lamps) and they were both made in Canada. When I had installed the Sylvania, I replaced the plastic OnGuard starter with an HN starter since I didn't know if it worked or not. Turns out it works fine so i used that OnGuard starter to replace the hubbell NeoStart, which barely works. I had to remove the cap from it to get any action. With the cap the lamps I used just glowed steadily. Without the cap the lamps all start fien but for some reason the ValueBright lamps are really hard to start with that starter. They'll flicker at the ends and you hear the starter pinging like a son-of-a-bitch and then after a minute to a minute and a half the lamp just flashes to life. With any other lamp though, the ends glow for two seconds and the lamp flashed on with no flicker. That's exactly how T17s start. The T17 in my grandpa's basement stays dark when you flick the switch for about 5 seconds then the ends glow for another four-six seconds and you hear a loud "PING" and the lamp comes on. No flicker. Those T17 starters are pretty loud! the ballast itself is very quiet though! Probably because it only runs one lamp...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 01, 2014, 11:02:16 PM
Ahh okay I see...so those ScamDim lamps are now all EOL and gone...well you have them now I guess...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 02, 2014, 12:06:43 AM
ScamDim? what do you mean? The one i just repalced it nearing EOL but the other is just dim (i think it's mercury starved; it has minimal end darkening. also they start normal with any other starter, they just don't like the neostart lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 02, 2014, 09:20:48 PM
A dead ValueBright is a ScamDim...see?
I've also noticed (and again noticed it today) that the Sears shoplight I have has a constant AC-ish flicker a little bit with those Sylvania Cool White Plus lamps on the GE Bonusline ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 02, 2014, 10:20:54 PM
I see. Well it served a good 20-30+ years so i say that's no scam. :P ;D

i put Joe' fixture back together ( i figured i might as well reassemble it before i loose the parts lol) and bought new hardware and wire for it. so the hardware is all shiney and the fixture is all ratty lol. i used good lamps on the ballast this time and they don't flicker. i don't know if its full power but it gived off decent light. i might install it in the garage inn place of the F20T12 until i restore it this summer...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 02, 2014, 10:56:21 PM
What did you use for lamps this time? Just curious...
If I found an unknown fixture/ballast right now I'd use (albeit briefly) 34w lamps for testing...but ONLY to make sure it worked without blowing up something like a GE Mainlighter.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 02, 2014, 11:03:10 PM
I used the GE K&B F40 tubes. after a half hour to an hour, the ballast is pretty hot (almost to the point where i can't keep my hand on it) on the left side where the neutral and 120V line-in wires are but it's still ice cold on the red and blue line-out side.

Eh if i had to use 34W lamps for testing i would. If i had reason so suspect the ballast is faulty (leaked tar etc) i'd probably use a 34W lamp and if it lit switched to a 40W tube for the heat test, when i run the fixture anywhere from thirty minutes to several hours depending how long i feel like running it lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 05, 2014, 10:22:44 PM
My worst ballast was the Universal one I have shunted for one lamp right now...that thing looked awful and I tested it OUTSIDE with 34 watt lamps on a long extension cord at first! I have pics in my gallery and you can see it laying on the grass and gravel. Long story short, it was half-dead, lighting one lamp dimly, so now it's wired for one lamp and works fine that way.  The GE Bonusline got tested with Sylvania Cool White Plus lamps.
I have some news I'm ecstatic about! I'm getting a F96T12 slimline fixture!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 06, 2014, 12:12:13 AM
OK, now I have time to elaborate more on that slimline...A few months ago I was in a neighbor's storage (a whole 2-bedroom house full of stuff, every room full of tools, etc.) and discovered this 2-lamp F96T12 striplight laying on a bed upstairs.  SO, while talking to them a couple days ago I mentioned it and they said it was there when they got that place, and I can have it! So next time they're in there they'll grab it for me! I may very well come home in the next few days to a slimline on my porch or in my entryway or garage. (Yes, I leave my garage unlocked and they borrow tools, etc. all the time) Lamps are Sylvania 60w cool white SuperSavers IIRC, but I don't know what it has for a ballast (Hopefully a nice GE Bonusline or Universal or something that's full power!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 06, 2014, 07:07:45 AM
Oh nice! Glad you're getting a slimline. 8) If I were to have an 8ft light I'd want an 8ft, not a slimline since i find slimlines boring with the instant start lamps... Unfortunately anything over 4ft is just too large for my collection right now and the 8ft fixtures are just going to get harder and harder to find...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 06, 2014, 09:27:53 PM
Yeah, despite their instant-on boringness I've always wanted one of those...although they have a THUMP! when turned on and usually hum quite loudly.  I might have to put it in the unheated garage just for the classic, nostalgic experience of the 60w energy savers flickering in the cold...LOL


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 07, 2014, 10:57:17 PM
yeah i know what you mean. and yeah strangely enough the slimlines tend to be louder than the HOs... Ugh those sucky 60W lamps flicker even when they're warm lol. and they're DIM! Fortunately the few T12s out there get relamped with full wattage lamps now since the selection of 34 and 60W T12s has narrowed a good amount due to the lamp regulations, though a case of 30 Sylvania F40/CW SuperSaver lamps costs the same as a 10 pack of daylight 40W Sylvanias at Lowe's. So tempting but i will not but ES lamps!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 07, 2014, 11:34:25 PM
Me either! I have some GE and GE-made ACE 34w energy savers but they were all given to me for free.
When those Supersavers fail they're getting relamped with 75w lamps UNLESS all I can find is energy savers (Which seems to be a reversing trend now; I see more and more places switching back to full-wattage lamps. Just like before EPACT only with higher CRI!) OR if I get some 60w slimlines given to me for free or REALLY reduced price.
I will get some pics of those striating in the cold.  We'll see how loud the ballast is...I bet it'll be REALLY loud on modified-sine-wave inverter electrcity! :shock:


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 08, 2014, 12:43:19 PM
Yeah i suppose that's the only good thing about the stupid CRI regulations lol. All Philips makes is full wattage lamps for the T12s. GE makes the 34W tubes but i don't ever see them for sale here. I only see the Sylvania Super Savers. And the only eco Sylvanias i see here are the SuperSavers. they have green etches.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 08, 2014, 12:48:06 PM
I've never seen the new GE energy savers in person...or any really for that matter.  Just GE, Sylvania, and Philips full-wattage lamps, sans Sylvania CWX energy savers.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 08, 2014, 03:13:35 PM
I've seen EcoLux F34T12/Residential Light lamps at the restore but one lost vaccuum and the other looked pretty close to EOL. I see F34/CW Altos all the time at the restore but never buy them.

Have you noticed that Philips Altos weigh less than Sylvania or GE lamps? I don't know if it's thinner glass or what but Altos seem to be lighter than other newer lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 08, 2014, 05:39:13 PM
I haven't because I've never handled an Alto! Seriously!
I got the slimline fixture this morning.  And, yes, it works! It's made by Lithiona, with a 90s Advance (post-kool-koil logo) full-power ballast (1.45a, best kind: full power and no PCBs!) and 1996 Sylvania 60w cool white Supersavers.  When it first made it into my house it was in the unheated garage and after running for almost an hour the lamps had brightened some but flickered horribly.  Upon bringing it inside, though, it warms right up, although the lamps flicker at first, but then they stop and are decently bright, although I'm sure 75 watters would be brighter yet.  Ballast is very quiet, and runs cool.  One of the sockets is broken though, so I have the fixture laying upside down right now (Lamps facing the ceiling)  with a piece of kindling from the woodstove jammed under it to support it (lamp is just making contact with the spring, it's the plunger side). I need to do something about that...we don't want 775v just sitting there, do we? But otherwise, a cool fixture! It does need a good cleaning (I did what Windex could do but the rest will have to wait till spring).  I'll post pics of the fixture, lamps, and ballast shortly! Stay tuned!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 08, 2014, 07:32:36 PM
yeah a 8ft fixture is a little much for me but I guess it would be cool to have one just for the sake of having one in the collection. The F90T17s are probably the larest fixtures I'd want around. IDK, 8ft just seems to cumbersome to me lol.

Yeah My M-250R1C will be getting a nice wash this spring. and the M-400A2s will be getting a coat of paint along with the light going to Joe.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 08, 2014, 08:05:34 PM
They're hard to move around for sure! It was in a small bedroom with a low, sloped ceiling, and it had to go out the door of that room, and down some very steep, narrow stairs (old house=probably not up to modern codes). There WAS an openable window at the bottom of the stairs which I thought it just might have to go out to get it out of the house, but it made it around the corner and out the actual front door.  THEN, I had to carry it the equivalent of several city blocks back to my house; at first I thought, "This is doable" but by the time I hiked up my steep driveway my arms and shoulders were saying otherwise.  I'm sure I looked hilarious walking sideways through the neighborhood (trees, etc. would have been in the way otherwise) with an eight foot fluorescent light fixture to most people.  Then I had gremlins with getting it going, namely having to add a cord and a bad socket.  Then I had to carry it out of the house, around back and in another door to my living room where I let it run for awhile and cleaned it up.  THEN, it just BARELY made it up MY stairs, which are even wider and less steep but have a 90 degree turn halfway up (I was scraping the wall at one point).
At first when I saw this thing I saw it from a weird angle and thought I'd scored a F72T12! (6ft).  I was sorta disappointed for a second but also pleased I'd maybe found something even cooler...but luckily it  was the 8ft I'd hoped for. 
F90T17s would be awesome! Although if you get a chance (like if your grandpa retrofits all his auto shop lights) I'd save an 8ft fixture if I was you, along with all the other ballasts and lamps (ballasts don't take up much space relatively speaking). I know you like HO's so I'd get one of each type of fixture as well as the associated ballasts and maybe some lamps too. 
I have multiple lights to restore: this one, the Sears shoplight, and a few others as well.  The channel covers (2-4ft sections) are currently sitting outside being rained on at the moment, mother nature cleaning!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 08, 2014, 10:04:28 PM
Yeah i know the lamps are awkward to carry. If you make any sudden turns will your holding them you have a good chance of smashing the lamp into something lol. I had relamped a few of my grandpa's slimlines. Eh, i don't think a retrofit is realistically in the agenda. If he's planning to retire there's no economical point in retrofitting the lights since it's not like he'll get his investment back. I'm not parting with that preheater in the bathroom though. That's coming with me lol.

A six foot fixture would be cool. The 3 and 6 foot fixtures of any type aren't common because the only time they were really used was when a 4 or 8ft fixture wouldn't fit, like at the end of a continuous fixture row in a store or soemthing. Here there's a store that retrofitted from T12HO to F32T8s and at one end of each row there were F72T12/HOs but they used four F32T8s and overlapped them to make 6ft instead of 8 and it looks terrible. The rest of the fixtures have 4 F32T8s per 8ft section. So the 8ft fixtures look like this:

_ _
_ _

And the six foot fixtures look like this but with the spaces eliminated:

_
 _
_
 _


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 09, 2014, 12:35:01 PM
I was in a supermarket once and they had the most ugly retrofit job I've ever seen.  They took what was probably 2XF40 or 2XF96 slimlines and staggered F32T8 lamps like that.  The light distribution on the ceiling was horrible!
Ever notice slimlines start one lamp a fraction of a second before the other? Mine will, every time.  And it has since had the experience of running on modified-sine-wave inverter electricity! On that, with about 102-108v line voltage, it almost acts like rapid start! (And buzzes more and runs dimmer, like any fluorescent light will on that power). I might try a startup vid, but I don't know how well it will turn out.
Yeah...save that preheater! I'd still try to get an eight foot fixture.  Someday you'll be glad you did.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 09, 2014, 01:32:11 PM
yep rapid start ballasts do that too. Joe did soemthing where his camera took continuous pics and started up one of his lights and the lamp connected to the blue wire always starts first. I think the lead-lag preehat ballasts are the same but since there's starters it's not like you could tell anyways lol. The HOs in my grandpa's shop are the same (all two fixtures lol) The blue-wire lamp starters ever so slightly before the red-line lamp.

I'd consider getting one of the HOs, but i don't have the money to purchase a new 8ft T8 fixture and I have no place to put a 8ft fixture. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 09, 2014, 02:57:59 PM
I'm talking if the building is being sold...you might not have to replace it.
This is impressive- the lamps don't striate as much and the lead lamp starts several seconds before the lag lamp on inverter electricity.  I tried getting it on video but I don't think it came out very well.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 09, 2014, 05:34:56 PM
Ahh yeah I think I'd still need to stick something up. Maybe I could slide with a F32T8 strip light.


several seconds apart? wow!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 09, 2014, 10:04:07 PM
Sometimes long enough to make me think something is wrong! :lol:
Well, I took your advice: I suspended that thing today! I ended up hammering nails into the ceiling joists in front of the 3-lamp F40 rapid start troffer then used old ballast leads as hanging hardware then clinched the nails over for homebrew "hooks". (It's not that heavy actually). Then I suspended it like you would a normal shoplight...
I also fixed the broken socket, albeit with electrical tape.  It still sagged after holding the lamp for a few hours so then I wrapped more electrical tape around the lamps and fixture twice at that end just to be safe. I'm liking single-pin slimlines much more than bipin lamps after discovering how much simpler they are and that the sockets can be repaired.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 09, 2014, 11:10:55 PM
lol well nothing wrong with some good old innovation! I suggest using a ziptie on the plunger end instead of tape though. It'll be more secure and look a little less... tapey lol.

yeah slimines are simple to relamp. whenthe fixture is suspended several feet from the ceiling, which is the case at my grandpas, you end up having to hold the fixture with one hand and try to remove the old and and install the new one with the other hand. I little trickey. The HO fixture was heavy enough so that the fixture didn't move that mugh lol. Plunger bi-pin is trickey and especially trickey if no impossible with mis-aligned endcaps and RDC can be a pain too if you don't line up the lamp and socket just right. It helps to have a person standing under the stationary sockets to let you know when you get them in. Slimlines are the easiest though since it's a round knob. Plus with SL lamps you can orient the lamp to either show the etch or hide it depending what your preerence is. If the fixture is open i like the show the etches if i can but for enclosed lights i try to hide the etch since somtimes you'll see a dark blob on the diffuser (either green or black) from the etch.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 10, 2014, 08:40:26 PM
I like looking at my etches so I have mine rotated so as to be visible!
I'll try the ziptie thing if I ever relamp this light...I don't want to mess with it until then.  That'll be awhile as the lamps look fairly healthy still...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 11, 2014, 06:52:05 PM
yeah i like the etches too but not when the light has a diffuser since it creates a dark spot on the diffuser if the lamp and diffuser are clsoe together.

I converted the F14T12 RS strip that Darren gave me to preheat. I'm going to mount it over my bed. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 11, 2014, 09:28:43 PM
Nice! Can we see a pic of the insides and it's lamp's etch?
I'm deciding I really like that 8ft slimline fixture, even more than the F40 rapid start fixtures in the same room.  Slimlines are quite simple IMO.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 11, 2014, 11:00:14 PM
i took pics today and will post tomorrowor wednesday. he also sent two NOS Sylvania F14/D lamps from the mid 2000s some time. for the F40s, daylight is a little too blue for me but for the F14s, i LOVE the daylight color!

the light is preheat and hardmounted to a shelf over my bed (yes, i'd be screwed if there was ever an earthquake and the shelf fell on top of me lol but the worst we've ever gotton was just enough to make the china cabinet rumble and shake your glass of water a little)

I was debating whether to use a Westinghouse /CW, and ITT /CW, a 2005 Sylvania-made GE /CW, or one of the daylight F14s that Darren sent me but i settled on a Westie F14/CW. Even though the ITT and Westie lamps are both /CW, the Westie has quite the yellow tinge to it. I don't really mind though.

the lamp is brighter with the choke though. funny thing is, on one of those 14/15/20W ballasts, the lamps all give off the same amount of lumens so the F14 is very bright and gives off as much light as a F20 and the F20s look underdriven lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 13, 2014, 09:51:52 PM
For me daylight looks weird for smaller lamps and better for larger ones...I'd love to find some /950 F96T12s...I know they exist...
My biggest earthquake, a magnitude 7.5 :shock: didn't break a single lamp.  I had nine GE Mainlighters in a corner between a desk and the walls and they all pushed together.  Same for lots of other lamps.  Pretty amazing!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 13, 2014, 10:32:48 PM
7.5? Geeze! :o Here it's no worse than the shake from the workers around the block blasting rock to build houses in the summer time. just a little shaking to make the stuff in on my shelves make a little noise and clank the china a bit.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 13, 2014, 11:09:26 PM
It was pretty big...make a mess out of the house but didn't break any lamps.  Stuff like the 14 sheets of Sheetrock leaning against the wall in the garage fell over...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 14, 2014, 07:13:26 PM
Oh wow. pretty freaky! Yeah a little rumble can cause a lot of tumble! (sorry for the weak rhymer here lol)

I'm going to build another one of my plug-in switched outlets for my F14T12 fixture so I don't need to unplug it and plug it in all the time. (i built one for my exit sign if you recall what it is. basically it's a PVC single gang juction box with a duplex switch/outlet combo wired to a computer cord. The idea is that the switch/outlet combo plugs into an outlet and whatever is plugged into the portable combo device is controlled by a switch! I could also make a two-gang box with one switch controlling two outlets or two switches, each controlling one outlet. I only need one switch and one outlet though)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 16, 2014, 12:16:01 AM
I have one of those...it's a vintage SNAP! switch whose metal part that screws to the box is very rusty but whose brass terminals and Bakelite housing are fine...it SNAPS! loudly and currently turns on my 8ft slimline.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 16, 2014, 11:33:53 AM
Ahh i get all the parts for my portable switched-outlets from Lowe's (except for the cord) so the switch/outlet device is a Pass & Seymour. Not really a SNAP switch but it doesn't allow the switch to arc like those cheaper residential grade switches.

I'm looking around to see how to improve my outdoor light pole. I want to use 1-1/4" EMT conduit but I don't know how to let the cord exit the pole without having it go to the bottom. I need to find a way to pop a hole in the EMT about 4ft from the ground to allow the cord to exit.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 18, 2014, 09:23:50 PM
All my electrical items are usually secondhand...and often vintage.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 18, 2014, 10:40:07 PM
oh i always buy new stuff when i make home made gagets. Unless i happen to have what i need laying around.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 19, 2014, 12:51:59 AM
I guess I'm the opposite then...LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 19, 2014, 07:10:45 AM
for replacement parts I'll install used parts but when i make something new from scratch i use all new parts. with my street light stand I already had an NOS Levition outlet though so i used that.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 19, 2014, 10:14:12 PM
I should do that but I have a vintage SNAP! switch installed in a modern Carlon box!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 19, 2014, 11:12:54 PM
I also meant to mention I had the 2nd-ever CFL failure happen.  Like the first, it was over a bathroom sink (last one happened in a different house) and was peaceful: no smoking, arcing, melting, etc.  I guess I'm lucky.  I just went to turn it on, nothing happened, so I stuck in an identical lamp (both the dead one and it's replacement were 13w 2700K GE Helicals) and it works fine now! It lasted about 2 years, not bad for being frequently switched.  Judging by that, a few others might go "poof" soon too...I'm thinking of two in particular that have about had it judging by the fact they're lumen depreciated and blackened at the ends of the spiral.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 20, 2014, 07:08:55 AM
Yeah CFLs usually fail peacefully. As long as they're not on for hours on end and not in a poorly ventilated fixture they don't ususally fail violently.

So as long as your not one of those who wastes electricity by running lights 24/7 day an night all the time whether they're home or not, then you likely won't see a violent failure. I've had a few CFLs die (all GE helicals, they ususally seem to get something loose since if you gently tap the lamp sometimes they come back to life lol).

BTW, Sylvania is closing the Central Falls, Rhode Island plant. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 20, 2014, 11:29:03 PM
Drr! What lamps did that plant make?


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on March 21, 2014, 09:18:20 AM
They make the outer glass envelopes for the HID lamps and send them to the manufacturing facility where the lamps are actually made in another state. I wonder if this means they're not going to make their lamps in the USA anymore... they don't make the MV lamps here anymore, that's why they're not BT-shaped. If Sylvania still made their MV lamps, they'd be BT28 and BT37 and BT56 just like the MH lamps are.

ugh i have a stomach bug. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 21, 2014, 09:16:25 PM
Or maybe just simplifying their manufacturing process by making the whole lamp at one factory?
I know Sylvania is proud of their Versailles, KY fluorescents to this day...I think they all come from there now (F40s at least).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 22, 2014, 10:18:13 AM
Thir Kentucky plant is their only US fluorescent plant so if they make them all in the US, they're made there. They used to me made in Canada and those were really great lamps too. Sylvania is just a really great company. I've always been pleased by them. My biggest issue with them are the misaligned endcaps on a lot of the F40s. sorta drives me nuts but it doesn't affect the lamp's performance. And it just shows they must have people assembling them isntead of machines, meaning Sylvania is providing jobs!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 28, 2014, 01:08:08 AM
Not necessarily...machines mess up a lot too.
Mine have that same issue...the loose pins.  Their 90s lamps were great- I have a pair of 1994 Workshop F40s, a 1993 (I think) F40/DSGN50, and a pair of 1996 F96T12/CW/SS lamps. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 28, 2014, 10:23:11 PM
Most lamps in my collection (4ft that is) are GEs.  Most are used warm white Mainlighters I found in the trash shed of the local community center, gave to the school, then got back later! Same for one Norelco F40CW.  I also have a F40CW Mainlighter later found in the same shed (It works too!).  I have some F40RES ones, as well as some 34w Watt-Misers.  And some GE-made Ace branded F40s. I have about 70 F40s total I think...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 29, 2014, 07:49:05 PM
Oh I've been meaning to mention I took apart that dead CFL and the ballast still works! (It lights an F15T8 quite well, albeit instant-starting.  From what I can tell, most CFLs are somehow instant-start but with cathode heating (So electronic rapid start with enough OCV to make it light instantly?) I believe that's their EOL sensing mechanism-when the electrode breaks, it quits working to prevent an ugly vacuum-loss-type show.
Also in a FarmTek catalog I got recently it appears PL13 adapters are still made!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 29, 2014, 08:39:22 PM
Oh cool. Glad that you reused the "ballast" since it still worked, though it's amazing it still works since those things are crude...

Yep the preheat PL adapters are still made in the 5, 7, 9, and 13W sizes. I have a few 5 and 13W ones. The 5w PLs are basically useless though, only about as bright as a 25W incandescent lol. If you had a fixture with a bunhc of sockets and didn't want a lot of light it would be good though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 31, 2014, 12:04:37 AM
A 5w 6500K PL would be interesting if such a thing exists...
I did a few more F40 lamp EOL shows on that 277v Advance electronic ballast yesterday.  I think it may be currently hooked up to the 240v tap of the 400w MH ballast it's using as a transformer, though as it sometimes rapid-starts! It stayed dim-glowing for a couple minutes with an Ace F40/UNIVERSAL/DLX then suddenly lost vacuum! First time I've ever had phosphor blow of (even then only a little bit) other than inadvertently hitting lamps on the end before cracking them...
I want to try that CFL ballast on a spent F15 lamp (although I have none right now) with intact cathodes to see what it does...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on March 31, 2014, 03:26:57 PM
All of my PL lamps are 2700K... daylight PLs probably exsit but I've never seen one. I've only seen daylight electronic PLs.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 31, 2014, 09:17:32 PM
I've seen 3500K and 4100K but no 6500K.  I have a PL13 adapter but no lamp so have never run it and I have no idea if it works.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on March 31, 2014, 10:14:48 PM
Someone on LG made homemade Powergrooves with a propane torch...I think I'm going to try it! (with a 34w lamp of course!)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 01, 2014, 04:43:36 PM
Hmm I've never really looked for preheat PL lamps before. All my adapters have come with lamps. The next time you go into a city and there's a Lowes or HD they will have PL lamps. If you want, you could stick solid AWG 18 leads in the holes for the pins on the adapter and hook up a F14T12 lamp or F15T12 lamp. don't forget to use an external starter in between the lamp ends. Just connect one wire from the adapter to one socket and the other to the other and connect the start in between just like you would wiring up a choke. It's basically a screw-in choke ballast lol.

LOL be careful denting your lamps lol. You might want to try it on an EOL lamp first to get the feel for it before destroying any working lamps, even if they're just 34W lamps.

I "saved" a F15T12/WW GE home fluorescent lamp from school today. Yesterday I scored four starters from school from undercabinet fixtures (plug in ones with the cords cut where they enter the fixture and the bodies are all plastic). There was only one lamp in the fixtures so I came back for that today since I was in the votech building the last perio today. I didn't take it yesterday since i didn't want to carry the lamp around in my backpack all day. The 18" lamp fit perfectly in my backpack and survived the trip home and needless to say it works with little blackening. I don't have an F15 fixture but if I meet up with Joe in Ontario this summer I'll have one from 1998. 8) ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 01, 2014, 10:39:18 PM
You and Joseph are meeting up? SUW-WHEEET! Hope that works out!!!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 02, 2014, 02:34:09 PM
well not sure. We're gonna try to meet up but IDK if it's going to work...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 03, 2014, 11:23:01 PM
Hope it does! I know lots of people who are sorta lighting inclined, though they're not collectors...like the former US history teacher I was visiting today who gave me that Sylvania F40/DSGN50 and the 1976 inside-etch Mainlighter that was EOL as well as the nonworking Advance ballasts...
He was showing me this brand new 8Kw Lister diesel generator he installed (Like mine his place is off-grid).  I asked if the hertz were accurate and he mentioned the lights in the woodshop flickered.  That lead into the woodshop lit with vintage rapid start shoplights.  This is where the interesting stuff starts.  In the 40 degree unheated room, the lights flickered when cold, even with (in theory) full power ballasts after starting up the aforementioned generator and one wasn't lit at all.  I went to service that one (I'll happily service other people's classic fluorescents as if they were my own).  Pulled out a slightly blackened GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC F40CW.  Stuck in a 1993 Sylvania D50 like the one he gave me...still didn't work.  Twisted the GE F40/KB in the other side of the fixture and it lit right up the way a good old full-power ballast should.  (It looks cool with a 3000K and 5000K lamp BTW). Then moved on to a nice old Sears shoplight like mine whose lamps were flickering dimly (GE-made Westpointe (True-value).  Switched them around with others, re-tried the GE F40CW, etc. (Which didn't work, no vaccum?) I'm thinking either a wire is loose in a socket somewhere or as Don already suggested, the cap is going bad in the ballast (the crappy dim LPF wraparound next to it was considerably brighter!) Two other lights (Sears ones too) flickered but I think they were cold.  All the sockets are obviously replaced as they look way too new for the fixtures, so I wonder if the ballasts are "energy saver" .73a ones.  (There was a lone 34 watter there, and we all know how those things treat those full power ballasts).
Also did you know electric motors don't like cold? The large commerical table saw in there did NOT want to start, even wired for 240v on an 8Kw generator (The lights dimmed down to just primary lamps going and I'm surprised no vintage cartridge fuses blew!)  Finally it started itself...those things draw a lot of power and I'm sure the cold didn't help either!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 05, 2014, 10:35:49 AM
oh wow sounds like a lot of lights down there. you know, if thay fixture has all new sockets and it's very dim, i wonder if it was wired wrong? Like maybe instead of putting two blues to one socket and two reds to the other they put one red and one blue to each or some other type of miswire?

The first thing I do with a RS fixture that doesn't work is check to make sure the lamp is in right and see if the lamp looks really worn. If no problem pops up there, I clean the lamps and if it still doesn't light up I'll try new lamps. I've never had a fixture not work with new lamps but if it didn't ork with new lamps and I woud take the new lamps out, open the fixture and check the sockets. If the sockets looked good and the wires weren't coming out, i would disconnect the ballast from power and close the fixture back up and leave it lampless. Then I'd return to replace the ballast (and sockets if they look ratty). then I'd test the ballast at home and find out if it works and if the sockets were just bad. If the sockets were all that was bad, I just scored myself a ballast!



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 06, 2014, 08:26:14 PM
Come to think of it, I wanna say I remember the offending fixture having a spent lamp when they first got that house...I think the spent GE Chroma 50 I got from him may have come from there.  I'm going to try and score that GE F40CW and see if it will light on either that shunted Universal Therm-O-Matic in my 3-lamp troffer or on my 277v Advance T8 ballast...the cathodes did not glow and the replacement lamps did, even only one when I improperly inserted it at first!
That light looks even older, has a REALLY wide reflector, and a yellow Underwriter's Laboratories sticker...I wonder if that ballast is ONLY rated for 40 watters? It was the brightest fixture for sure and warmed up fastest.
All the lights (except maybe the aforementioned one) have new sockets and he told me he remembered the previous owner (they were friends before HE got the house) over there changing bulbs and cursing up a storm one day...LOL.  But I might be getting that Sears light with the dim lamps...we will see...and I've warned him about 34 watt lamps and full-power ballasts...there were a couple laying around there, and one in use...
Someday, though, I'd love to score all four vintage fixtures!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 07, 2014, 03:39:54 PM
It might have a full power ballast.

Reminds me of my cousin's grandparents' garage that I relamped. I left the old lamps there in a corner. I think the westies have missing endcaps (since they were loose and fell off when i removed them). The lamps are apparently still there untouched so I'm going to try and get them and bring them home. Hopefully one or two still work on RS and if not I'll likely get a good EOL show out of them...

I'd like tho score those three fixtures someday too. Plus there's three more in the basement and they all work too with their vintage lamps. One functions off it's pull chain as the only switch and it has a pair of Westinghouse F40/CW lamps. Another one has a wall switch mounted on the ceiling next to it and has a pair of DuroTest F40/CW lamps. The thrid was lampless but had a 34W red etched GE and a Westie F40/CW on the ground below it. That one had no pull chain or switch near it so I don't know if it had power or how to supply it...

I'd like to get those three two but they're hardmounted, not chained, and there are no free replacement fixtures for them lol. Also, she doesn't seem to really want me to change any of the lights out saying that she's fine with the existing lights. I've explained to her that I'm doing it for me since I want the old lights and I don't expect any payment or anything but she still doesn't seem to want me to do it. She's never flatout given me an answer either way though.

the ones in the garage will be easy to replace. I don't even need to open them. Just unhook the romex from the outside and unchain the fixture. Of course I'd take the lamps out before anything to avoid breaking them. If you remember, all the lamps are 70 CRI Sylvania CWP lamps. I replaced five lamps but only had four starters. One fixture got two new lamps and two new starters, one fixture got two new lamps and one new starter, and the other fixture only needed one new lamp and I gave it one new starter (the starter for the lamp I replaced obviously). I left the working lamp in there since it's got plenty of life left. Of course, it's my hope that I'll end up getting the fixtures so that means I get my lamps back too lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 07, 2014, 10:57:38 PM
Yeah those preheaters are cool! Since he wants to group relamp (What lamps should I suggest?) I'll likely score: a GE F40/KB, some Sylvania D50s, a GE C50, and a few others as well.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 08, 2014, 03:33:19 PM
Is he/are you buying new lamps or are you using lamps from your stash? If you're buying lamps I'd grab a case of Sylvania CWP 70 CRI lamps if you can find one tucked away in the back of a shelf or soemthing at the store. If not, a case of Sylvania the new style CWX 87 CRI lamps would be your best bet, at least in my opinion. The 5000K lamps are nice but they're flickery on the grid never mind on a generator lol. Plus they are expensive so personally I'd save them for special applications like a kitchen where high CRI is more more important and a higher color temp is more desired. You could also use daylight if you don't mind the bluish light or spending more. I'm not a fan of either one; spending more or the bluer light lol.

I really like the 3500K lamps but I can never find full cases of them for F40T12s. The twin packs are nice but they're 10 bucks a pair whereas a case of them would range in the 20-30 dollar range.

I like cool white just because it's like the one-lamp-fits-all type deal so when buying lamps I like to buy cool white since I can use them anwywhere without the light looking too "weird". My second favorite color temperature is 3500K. It has a nice warm tone to it to give you that warm feeling but it's still a fairly white light and very bright. In fact, my two GE EcoLux (either 82 or 84 CRI) have a lot of lumens! I don't know off hand but I have the info from the sleeve taped to my tool box. Unfortunately they couldn't have passed the last regulation that set the bar at 87 CRI. :( So close too yet not close enough. Oh well...

Anyway, I guess GE or Sylvania would be good in either 3500K (if you can find them) or 4100K (or even 6500K if it's not too blue for him). If the ballasts make note of 34W lamps I guess you could use up some of those /WW 34W lamps of yours (or are they 40W?). Personally I'd avoid 34W lamps altogether and save yourself the hassle but if they list 34W lamps and they're in a basement (basements are typically cool year-round) then the ballasts wouldn't likely overheat.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 09, 2014, 09:11:18 PM
He wants to buy new lamps to be over the hassle of older ones...although he is by absolutely no means incapable of maintaining fluorescents...although I happily service these fixtures like they're my own.
I was thinking Sylvania F40/CWX...there's six fixtures there, two are cheap modern ones with dim flickery LPF ballasts but the other four probably have old full-power PCB containing ballasts so NO 34 watt lamps! (Although one of them has been running one for who knows how long...Universal Therm-O-Matic LOL?  Although Sylvania now makes 90CRI triphosphor 3000 lumen F40s! I am certain those are more expensive though...Although I'm very loyal to Sylvania Design 50/Daylight Full Spectrum despite their flickery characteristics. CWP would be okay although those were from that era where they flickery EVERY TIME they're turned on (Although these lights run for long periods; three of them are on whenever the generator is running). IDK if Sylvania still makes a F40/DX...(6500K); I don't see them at my nearest Spenard Builder's Supply (An Alaska home-improvement chain).  I guess 3000K soft white might be better in a woodshop as long as it's 90-ish CRI but the ones I saw in a supermarket vegetable cooler were /EcoLogic.  True-Value here sells GE lamps of their own brand in cool white (well now 87CRI C41) by the case but I think all others come in 2-packs...although they have some interesting, odd size lamps...like 18-ish inch HOs! (in 90s design sleeves of course). It could be GE 2600K "Reveal"/"Kitchen & Bath", 3500K "Office & Professional" like you have, 4100K "Residential Light"/"Basement & Garage", 5000K "Chroma 50"/"Sunshine"/"Closet & Laundry", or 6500k "Active Spaces".  BTW I dislike GE's new color names and packaging for fluorescents, though GE Ecolux lamps are of excellent quality from what I have seen. I'd be tempted to buy some 92CRI Philips "C50 Supreme" but I don't have a home depot near me. If I did, I'd want 6500K Daylight Deluxe Altos if they were my lights...
Some of the lamps there now are 5000K (GE Chroma 50 and Sylvania Design 50) and they don't seem to flicker except when cold but yeah...generators tend to have their hertz/cycles a little off...one of mine makes that Advance Kool-Koil ballast I have (with GE Chroma 50s) flicker horribly...
Most of the lamps are cool white though and that is the "universal" color...but it'd likely have to be pinkish CWX...which on it's own might be okay although I was personally not impressed with the one CWX lamp I bought and installed...
Since the ballasts might take note of 34 watt lamps it's going to be 40 watt lamps though for sure! Plus, 34 watt CWX lamps would be really dim.
Also that place has vintage glass screw in fuses and cartridge fuses! The whole building is "vintage" with the old wood-frame single-pane windows, etc...all sorts of other non-electric things there that are pretty cool too.   


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 09, 2014, 10:46:07 PM
what color are the 3000 lumen 92 CRI lamps? Not all CWP lamps had flickering issues. Yeah i still see daylight Sylvania lamps sold so they;re still made (in F40s that is). Lowe's sells GE F40T12s in 3000, 3500, 4100, 5000, and 6500 in GE 2-packs for about 10 bucks a pair here and they sell sylvania 10-packs in 4100K, 5000K, and 6500K. Yeah i agree that GE's packaging is very vague and make no mention of CRI which i find odd seeing how CRI is the big thing with these lamp regulations.

Well I'm sorta biased against /WW tubes lol but yeah in a wood shop /WW or /W (3000 or 3500K) would look best. Benny's (local hardware chain like Ace, etc) here sells single Sylvania F40T12/WX lamps. I'm really tempted to buy one but i don't know any info like lumens or CRI and the lamps are 5 bucks a piece. Their two packs of Sylvania CWX lamps are still less than that, though the CWP lamps were really cheap; $1.99 per lamp or $2.99 for a two-pack.

hmm i really liked the CWX lamps i bought but i never put a CW or CWP with one of the CWX lamps. The ones i bought didn't seem dim and purple though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 16, 2014, 12:05:15 AM
4100K.
Me too! I don't like warm white all that much or even 3500k...although I'd still buy a Sylvania F40/WX just for the collection if I was you...
Mine isn't exactly running on a full power ballast either: an Advance 2XF40 electronic RS ballast wired for one lamp...I remember the line current was low but I don't remember exactly what it was...
I had a GE Watt-Miser die in my T8 bathroom light...for running on the wrong ballast it did great, lasting over a year with frequent switching...it died like this: it got down to 48 degrees in my house (fire went out and was gone all day).  In that temp it would not light fully...just dim glowing like a failed lamp on rapid start.  Then after a couple minutes it came to life fully with the violent orange flashing at the end...then went out (comtaminated? or not enough electrode left?) except for a purple glow at that end and a sparky discharge to the tube wall...after a few minutes that faded out then it lost vacuum with a very loud HISSSSSSSSSSS! When I took it out, I rolled the lamp around since I could hear a chunk of glass rattling around in there...the carnage was impressive once I scraped the phosphor off that end! The GE F32T8/SPX35s I replaced it and the identical lamp with are MUCH brighter and the warmer color seems odd now...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 16, 2014, 03:09:05 PM
Oh wow 92CRI /CW lamps and it's actually bright! What kind are they? CWS or something?

Yeah my Sylvania Quicktronic T8 ballast put on a killer show with the Alto I got from the restore, probably since the electrode guard kept the glass from melting. All three of the other lamps lost vacuum though with a faint HISSS. :-\

Ah I love 3500K, especially in stores. 3500K looks a little more "normal" as T8 but I love my 3500K T12s. I think they're my brightest F40s. Myabe you'll get used to the warmer color. I've sorta gotten used to /WW but it's definetly not one of my prefered color temps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 16, 2014, 08:53:49 PM
I like /WW for it's brightness but that's it.  I think they're triphosphor...not 87CRI CWX. 
I like 5000K 90CRI and 6500K personally...those are my favorite colors. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 18, 2014, 08:58:36 PM
I just scored another lamp of my personal favorite color: 90CRI deluxe halophosphor 5000K.  It's a 2013 Sylvania "Daylight Full Spectrum" which AFAIK is the new Design 50.  It was abused by being misinserted in a fixture with one of those awful LPF magnetic rapid start ballasts that almost NEVER stop flickering/rectifying (Is it any wonder why homeowners don't like fluorescent lights?).  It would just BARELY light, along with it's identical twin.  Took it home, and tried it on the ballast that least likes to start lamps: one of those Lithiona shoplights with a LOA type "preheat with electronic "starter" type ballast.  It lit but didn't seem super happy.  Next was a LPF magnetic rapid start like the one it was on, in which it lit.  To make sure it was in really good working condition, I tried it on a full-power Univesal Therm-O-Matic: lit right up! Now it's running in an 80s-90s LPF shoplight next to a GE warm white Mainlighter...looks cool with 3000K and 5000K actually! My one acceptable color mismatch is daylight and warm white.  It's BLACK, though, on both ends, for a brand-new lamp! (Maybe a bit defective?) We'll see how long it lasts before it quits rectifying, then it's time for the shunted 2-lamp HPF ballast I have, then my lamp-cooker 277v Advance T8 balallast, then of course HazMat.
Also I was visiting with the former teacher with the woodshop full of old RS shoplights today along with another somewhat-fluorescent-inclined person (Who gave me the aforementioned lamp).  His place is still fed by cartridge fuses, and one of them had finally corroded off at one end (the endcap pulls right off).  (a 50 amp 120v leg of 240v cartridge fuse that looks ancient).  Since part of their place is without power as a result, we were admittedly contemplating sticking something like a piece of copper pipe in there temporarily! It's not nearly as bad as it sounds since their brand-new generator (house is off-grid) has breakers on it as well, so it's not like it's a totally unfused line.  I did joke, however, that if there was a ReStore in the area (we're all garage-sale type people anyway) I'd be driving right down there and looking for a suitable fuse.  It's always nice when people with similar hobbies/knowledge can help each other.  The friend who gave me the daylight Syvania lamp was pretty sure he can solder the old fuse back together, though...I did take that opportunity to educate them on the dangers of wax paper capacitors in vintage fluorescent starters and how they can be clipped out quite easily.
Would a large electric motor (namely a commercial-grade 240v table saw) run at all on only one 120v leg, albeit with harder starting? His table saw had been having issues starting (dimming the lights (old Sears shoplights with full power ballasts) way down till it starts, etc)? We think that's why...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 19, 2014, 03:59:47 PM
Ahh nice score! According to Aaron, Daylight Full Spectrum is their name for the 2-packs whereas the DESIGN50 name is for cases. That explains why my lamps from the same era are DSGN50 etched.

Hmm i don't know about the saw... I would assume a 240V appliance wouldn't work on 120V. But if it does, it's especially dangerous with the motor, as motors need to be driver in spec or you will destroy it. Same with all inductive loads but with motors this is especially important.

Well unfortunately, NGrid replaced a couple dozen 100W mercs on two nearly-all-MV-lit streets in Pawtucket. See the gallery for pics if you're interested. Now the only two streets left with a lot of mercs in Pawtucket are my mom's mom's & step-dad's street and the street parallel/next to to theirs.

Funny thing is, I reported a couple 100W mercs on my grandparents' street (which is across the main road from the two targeted streets) and they relamped them instead of replacing them. I've been very careful and strategic with reporting the mercs on Oakland Ave and Hughes Ave (my grandparents' street and the one next to it) to make sure they get repaired and not replaced. So far so good too. I have only a couple left on each street to get fixed since they're dimmed out but I'll need to be careful.

On the other streets I had never reported any lights since I had never seen them lit at night but I've been on top of Hughes and Oakland for a few years now and almost all of them are nice and bright. Around 10 years ago all the lights on their street were pretty dimmed out but thanks to me they're almost all bright. Maybe since they've all recently been relamped, they didn't do the recent mass-changeout there since it would have been a waste, since they're all basically bright as new except for the few I haven't yet reported.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 20, 2014, 12:29:19 AM
That explains what I was thinking...a more "residential" name...Do DSGN50 F96T12s exist? I'd love to find some for my eight foot fixture...I wonder if a 60w energy saver version is made? (Not that I'd buy those; those 60w lamps are awful IMO, flickering even in a heated indoor room at first!
As for running on 120v, it would've been one "leg" although I was talking with him again today and he hadn't lost power to the half that controlled so we think it was on it's way out then, and just not providing enough current to start that big 240v motor very well...I'd almost say it could be 208v or 277v but I doubt it...this is just normal single-phase 120/240v.
Another weird thing...we all know how generators tend to be a little off on their cycles/hertz, right? Would lights flicker if the hertz were too "fast"? (Namely 62 instead of 60?) Voltage on the leg we measured was 199.5v, so excellent voltage...weird...
Sorry to hear about the mercs...oh, well.  I'm actually liking the movement toward LED and induction streetlights for the simple fact that I think the orange of HPS is extremely nasty...but that's just me...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 20, 2014, 03:08:09 PM
Hmm I'm not sure if 5000K 8ft lamps exist. I know Sylvania only makes the SuperSaver lamps in F40T12/CWX and F96T12/CWX but GE makes ES lamps in every color temp according to their site.

Hmm I'm not sure how altering the Hz would affect the lights.

I like that white-glow lamp sources are coming out but the new "green" street lights are just plain ugly. They can find a way to utilize existing cobrahead molds but they choose to come out with these alien things instead. >:( :8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 20, 2014, 11:46:54 PM
I've seen LED and induction cobrahead conversion kits before...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on April 21, 2014, 04:55:35 PM
Yep conversion kits exist but most times utility companies will opt to replace rather than reuse/retrofit. :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on April 21, 2014, 10:57:04 PM
Yeah but that also means we can obtain fixtures if in the right place at the right time!
Did I ever mention I'm into vintage radios/stereo tuners/amps as well? I'd love to find a nice old fully functional Sansui, Kenwood, Pioneer, Marantz, Lafayette, etc. tuner with analog tuning, dial lamps, etc...those older radios have killer reception too! I now really regret not saving my late mother's 1988 Sanyo system...it was compact with only 18" tall speakers but had a turntable and tape deck, as well as a tuner.  It badly needed an external antenna though as it only picked up a few very local stations (on FM anyway).  I hope it didn't end up in a dumpster...and I also regret not saving those '88 Philips F40CWs made at the Lynn, Massachusetts Norelco plant.
I also am fortunate to have many friends in my area who are also junk collectors...we're the kind who, when in the city, go garage-saling every weekend. The friend who gave me that Sylvania Daylight Full Spectrum just today showed me a 5-gallon bucket full of mostly electrical parts from our friend who has the woodshop I will someday group-relamp...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on April 22, 2014, 03:49:27 PM
Yeah you've mentioned it before. I've noticed that the tone is really low/deep on newer speakers and I don't like it. >:(

Yeah you gotta know people to get places lol. (and same goes to get things too lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 04, 2014, 01:44:13 AM
Yeah that's my situation! I like bassy speakers but I also like the older ones which are really trebly instead...the newer ones are all about bass!
I really like the sound of FM stereo, though with a weak signal it gets staticky/hissy quickly...although the only FM station in my area broadcasts in mono.  The advantage to that, though, is increased distance the signal travels...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 04, 2014, 09:18:23 PM
Some light sightings from a recent trip I took that I found interesting...
-A school I went to had some 2X4 parabolic troffers whose diffusers were mirrored but in like a 1" by 1" pattern...which made them rather lackluster in light output.  They were running all 34w lamps (Yes, they were T12!) Both cool white and warm white GE Watt-Misers in every generation since EPACT, including Ecolux.  Also there were a few "Guaranteed Xtra Long Life" F40/CW/ES Philips-made lamps.  Color mixup was mostly random, though a few rooms had only one of the two. IMO 34 watt warm white lamps (Which I had previously never seen in person) are even dingier than the cool white ones...I wonder how the daylight ones are?
Also an old college campus had this nice old mercury NEMA on a building...possibly a Joslyn, Westinghouse, etc.? It had the latch-on optics and a curved (Lexalite?) refractor (maybe glass?) and a very buzzy  ballast (you could hear it a few blocks away!) running a nice somewhat-dimmed-out clear BT28 lamp...could be a GE but likely Sylvania or a Westinghouse/Philips Lifeguard. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 04, 2014, 09:37:23 PM
Wow sounds like a nice variety! Yeah I've only ever seen /CW 34W lamps. I'd imagine daylight ES lamps to be a little greenish and semi-yucky looking lol.

Does the NEMA head look like mine on top? Westinghouse had the raised up part for the PC socket. I know American Electric/ITT/Thomas & Betts NEMA heads came with those tapered curved bottom Lexalite buckets so maybe it's an AE NEMA head. I think the Sylvania Ballast-in-Arm lights used them too.

Yeah likely the lamp isn't a GE. If it is, it's almost definetly an original lamp since by the mid-to-late 60s GE was using ED lamps. Could be Sylvania or Westinghouse though. Westie seems to have been the most commonly used MV lamp...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 06, 2014, 10:34:03 PM
Also a gas station mini-mart had a bunch of GE CX65 "DELUXE DAYLIGHT" (Didn't know that was still around with GE!) mixed in with Westpointe (True Value) 34 watters which by comparison looked like warm white!
It didn't even have an integral PC socket and the top was rounded...I'm no expert on NEMAs but still thought it was WAY cool and enjoyed being around it at night!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 07, 2014, 03:10:51 PM
Hmm if it's got a round top, it could be GE or a very early Westinghouse. I'm guessing a GE though...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 08, 2014, 12:31:57 AM
Ahh interesting...
My science/Spanish teacher and I were talking about insulators today!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 09, 2014, 01:35:54 AM
I'm currently doing research on a couple vintage Tripp-Lite square-wave 12v DC to 115v AC inverters my honorary grandfather has.  One is a huge, heavy 250w unit, and the other is an (ironically smaller in physical size) 400w unit.  Both are "square wave" too, not the "sine wave" of 120v grid power.  This can cause problems with some sensitive electronics, but resistive loads are OK.  This particular 250w unit has run radios and spiral CFLs just fine, though.  I'll post a pic soon...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 10, 2014, 12:09:38 AM
I switched out the 12v deep-cycle car battery that the 250w one was running on today since the old one would give you about 2 minutes of power...much better now!
I also took a bunch of dead lamps and ballasts to recycle/HazMat today, including a May 1976 cool white Mainlighter that didn't work, that Chroma 50 that took forever to finish off, and three dead Advance Kool-Koil F40 rapid start ballast...vintage but they didn't work and were therefore just more junk laying around...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 11, 2014, 12:17:48 PM
Oh the joys of talking with neighbors! I scored none other than a pair of VitaLite PowerTwist F40s! Pics to come later...
I'm also gonna try to talk them out of a pair of Philips pre-Alto Econ-O-Watt Lite White 34w F34s. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 11, 2014, 10:03:57 PM
Well this weekend has been a marathon of lighting finds! First were the VitaLite PowerTwist F40s.  (Which by itself is enough to make me permanently stop collecting!) Then it turns out I may get a bunch of old shoplights from a friend/woodshop teacher!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 14, 2014, 09:02:08 PM
Well I figured out why one of the vintage shoplights in my friend's woodshop is so flickery the other day...I finally opened it up and discovered none other than an obviously-replacement "US Fluorescent" LPF ballast in there! My friend even knows what a full-power Universal Therm-O-Matic or Advance Kool-Koil is, so we were laughing at the pathetic .75 amp line current! (Would be less but it's LPF!) I suggested we stick in 34 watt lamps since those seem to do better on those ballasts than F40s and even if they cook the ballast it it's an excuse to put in something more robust.  After removing a GE Watt-Miser from another fixture to pair it up with, I tried sticking in an Ace F40SP41 in it's place, and was having trouble.  No sooner than I remarked I didn't want to break a socket, POP! Friend was like, "It's fine, it's fine" but I'm still planning on bringing a socket on my next visit and offering to fix it...doesn't matter to me since, like Mike, I might be getting these fixtures in the future so any lamps/ballasts/sockets will likely be coming back to me.
In the past I've noticed all these fixtures except for one look like the lampholders have been replaced so I wonder if the ballasts are all crappy LPF ones? (Except for one really vintage looking one that's REALLY bright and warms up quickly in cold...I sense a nice full-power ballast in there!
He is considering replacing the fixtures with something else and giving them to me...he would like to move away from linear fluorescents and we're talking spiral CFLs with lots of ceramic JB sockets mounted to a board or something...possibly brighter and less flickery.  (Power usage isn't an issue, could use incandescents too!) Any ideas? We're NOT going with cheapo T8 shoplights though!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 14, 2014, 10:36:03 PM
Hmm. To replace each F40 fixture, get a 2X2 piece of wood (plywood, OSB, particleboard, whatever) and stick five round junction boxes on it, one at each corner and one in the middle. on the outer four use ~13W CFLs and the center one have a pull chain with a ~100W incandescent. you can use the incandescent when it's cold to keep the CFLs bright. In the summer, the incandescent isn't needed so pull the chain to keep it off. And just screw the 2X2 boards to the joists and you're done! If you don't want pull chains you can wire the center incandescents to their own circuit (which i suggest so you don't overload the existing circuit, as each light now is let's say 100W and if you have four 13W CFLs and a 100W incandescent that's 152W. Just make sure you don't run over 80% of 15A.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 16, 2014, 01:38:54 AM
I pictured a 4' 2X4 with lots of junction boxes but apparently he ordered something on eBay similar to a bath vanity bar light...we'll see! I might score a couple lights before the beginning of summer then! (Like yours, they'll be coming down one by one).  If not, they'll just keep them for me till I can get to them...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 17, 2014, 12:28:48 AM
I took down my Sears shoplight and put the Lithonia slimline in it's place.  I'm planning to eventually restore the Sears and/or use it as a plant light...it's reflector is perfect for that!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 17, 2014, 04:13:28 PM
Ahh you're getting ready to restore it eh? 8)

I posted pics of my recent grabs. See  here.  (http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/thumbnails.php?album=2782) It's the 3X F32T8 Lithonia parablic troffer from school (I also got two Sylvania Octron 3X F32T8 IS ballasts with sockets and lamps (so six extra GE SPX35 EcoLux lamps) and I grabbed the preheat chokes out of the undercabinet lights i took the lamps and starters from before).

and at my late grandpa's house (my grandma and aunt still live there) and tidying up the desk a little bit where the T17 is in the basement, i dropped a paper under the desk and bent down to pic it up and caught sight of an NOS F15T12/T8 trigger start strip light still in the box! :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 17, 2014, 11:55:30 PM
Oh going through his personal stuff now I imagine? I just went through the same process a few months ago with my mom...cool! What era/ are you going to get it if you haven't already?
Nice! I like T8 stuff actually but nothing's better than a 70s-80s Universal 2XF40/RS! (As we all know). 
Maybe if I find some nice metal paint...I refuse to use wall paint but if I find some nice metal epoxy paint leftover from one of my boat projects in the future that's white I'll use that...gray or some other color would be OK for the topside though...for now it's not in use and a lamp tester I guess...I might put it back in the garage though since I'm not impressed with the Lithonia slimline being there...it's just too long, too low (It's a low ceiling anyway, plus it's suspended) and not any brighter than the Sears light with Sylvania Cool White Plus lamps on a GE Bonusline full-power ballast as opposed to some crappy 60w Sylvania Supersaver cool white slimlines...and my dad doesn't like it either. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 18, 2014, 09:55:13 PM
Not quite yet. This summer we'll go through his stuff. I was just rummaging around being nosey lol.

Yeah it's a pretty cool light. It's got its original GE lamps and both lamps and the ballast are from 2006 so the fixtures were probably installed in 2007 or something.

Yeah I don't like 8ft slimlines because they can be pretty dim and they always flicker. Even the 75W lamps don't really impress me, though they're certainly better than the 60W lamps. I don't really care for slimlines in general, though I love HOs.

Yeah I hate stuipd laytex paint that peels off stuff. I'd personally stock up on some spray paint the next time you go into town. one can of gray is plenty and half a can of white is plenty. I use Rust-Oleum "smoke gray" for the gray parts and "gloss white" for the inside of the reflector. Whatever you do, don't mix paint brands with spraypaint.

For silver lights like westinghouse lights i use Rustoleum Hammered Silver and for gray street lights i use Krylon "Pewter Gray". One thing I've learned is to also spray a clear emanel coating over the gray or silver to prevent chipping since those two colors aren't enamel like the ones used for fluorescent lights. The paint on my OV-25 and M-250A and RMA NEMA head scratches easily.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on May 18, 2014, 10:50:39 PM
Went to Restore this weekend again lol. Not much of interest but I did find a brand new LED track head for 5 bucks.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 19, 2014, 12:23:35 AM
I'm not that familiar with 75w slimlines since all the slimlines I'm around have 60w lamps from that EPACT era when 75w lamps were hard to get for awhile there in the late 90s and early 2000s...I'd like to find some 75w 5000K or 6500K lamps for it!
How about house paint on galvanized steel? That peels right off with a flat-bit screwdriver at least...I'm currently doing just that on my boat. 
I actually kinda like the smell of new latex paint though since it smells fresh and new to me...LOL
I'll have to try spraypaint...I always thought spraypaint was chincy though although it does have the advantage of no brush/roller marks or missing hard-to-reach areas. 
My honorary grandfather and I were cleaning out his shop at the old house he sold (he's getting some of that stuff back) and I scored an (albeit spent) Norelco F40CW and 90s Sylvania F40/CW.  That Norelco was the first lamp I ever saw "Norelco" on a light bulb (I remember it from my childhood). 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 19, 2014, 08:39:22 PM
Yeah my grandpa's shop has both 75W full mercury and 60W slimlines. The 75W ones are brighter but still flicker. 5000K or 6500K lamps would be cool. I've only see 4100K and warm white 8ft lamps.

Spraypaint is high quality stuff when you're not vandalizing property with it lol. No brush strokes and a nice even coat. As good as a factory paint job if you do it right. I tend to overspray and make the paint run a little though lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 19, 2014, 10:35:12 PM
Are the 60 watt lamps reduced mercury? Yeah the 60 watters SUCK in cold...mine in my garage are pretty useless honestly!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 20, 2014, 02:33:56 PM
I don't know... They're 60W CWX Sylvania SuperSavers but I don't remember if they're also Ecologic


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 23, 2014, 12:38:19 AM
Yeah they must be pretty dim!
Remember how I was taking about how I have a knack for running into people with similar interests? Well I ran into someone today who likes vintage stereo tuners! I got to talking to them after noticing their sweatshirt advertised Ridgid LED Lighting...LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 23, 2014, 07:10:30 AM
Nice! it's always good to meet new people woth similar interests. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 24, 2014, 12:40:17 AM
Yeah you can really educate each other, as well as being able to relate. For example,he guy I'm getting the vintage shoplights from even knows what one of those 70s Universal Therm-O-Matic ballasts is!
I also like talking to people about off-grid power systems...that can be interesting! I'd like to install some solar panels at my (off-grid) house since I have to run a gas generator to charge my batteries...it's still a savings as opposed to running a generator 24/7 (Although I'd NEVER do that; in the previous (also off-grid) place I lived in I shut it off and just didn't have power at night while sleeping, during the day when there's light coming through the windows, etc...(Well there was a 12v car battery running a small 400w inverter for an answering machine on the phone and one table lamp). My current house has a wind generator that worked for eight months before it crapped out...and it did make a difference but I was still kinda disappointed so solar is the way to go IMO since it's more constant and wind generators are rather noisy...WHIRRRRRRRRRRRRBBBBBBBBIIIIIIZZZZZZZZZEEEEEEE!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 24, 2014, 08:52:11 PM
Yeah the only thing is though, if you tell someone how much to value something that they have, they might take advantge of that and try to get some money out of you. But if you are friends with the person then there is no big deal.

Yeah there's been a few wind turbines put up here but i think solar is the way to go. The problem is, for big buisnesses, they literally need a solar field since they often can't fit enough panels on the roof if there's HVAC stuff or whatever.  Some solar fields are the size of ballparks or bigger!  (http://www.blogcdn.com/www.engadget.com/media/2011/06/solar-field.jpg)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 25, 2014, 12:57:58 AM
Ever seen one of those grid-tie solar systems? Someone's house had one...they had no batteries and would send excess power back into the grid, turning the meter backwards, but at night they were buying power from the utility.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 25, 2014, 10:09:44 PM
yeah I've heard of those. I heard some story about Africa being europe's solar power plant. They certainly get a LOT of solar energy in the desert areas! It seems up your way solar power is good in the summer but don't you have very limited sunlight in the winter months? In the winter i guess either wind turbine or generator would be your best bet...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 26, 2014, 09:53:53 PM
Yeah probably although still better than wind (less sporadic).  I was not impressed with my wind turbine...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 26, 2014, 10:16:00 PM
LOL yeah if you're not in a windy area than wind turbines probably aren't the best option. If you live right on the coastline or in the mountains then wind turbines are great since there's always a wind off the coast and up in the mountains.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 26, 2014, 10:20:07 PM
My house is more or less waterfront although there are lots of mountains here. (And tall trees!) We get lots of rain here. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 27, 2014, 07:11:42 PM
BTW, restored the M-400A2 going to darren. See the gallery. ;D I was able to get my hands on two PC sockets too from Ryan so the M-400A2s have PC sockets too.  8) Up next, I'll restore my M-400A2. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 29, 2014, 12:56:18 AM
Oh nice! I need to someday get off my lazy posterior and save and restore that M-400A!



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on May 29, 2014, 03:01:22 PM
Yes! Get pics! ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 29, 2014, 11:43:51 PM
We shall see...I'll also have to look for a lamp for it at the local ReStore...that alone will be fun!
I was talking to the same person who gave me those PowerTwist lamps and scored some PL13s! (3 of them).  They were sent by mistake...I was commenting on some Philips tubular exit sign lamps he had and needless to say that was that! This enabled be to test that Abco PL13 adapter.  There was what turned out to be the base of a broken-off lamp in there, puzzling me as to how to insert the new lamp at first...the base seemed wrong so I thought maybe I'd scored some lamps intended for electronic ballasts, not preheat...but I grabbed a pocketknife and it popped right out, exposing the actual socket...the lamps are very blinky and slow-starting! (More so than other preheat fluorescents I have)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 30, 2014, 05:10:25 PM
Yeah, PL lamps are very blink-happy. ;D Have you ever noticed that the electronic ones start off really dim and reddish-pink though and then warm up? the preheat ones start off dim too but fairly bright. There's a room in my school called the Meshanticut (pronounced "muh-shan-uh-cut"; the T is silent) Room and it has recessed cans with electronic PLs lamps and they start off really really dim and pink like they're mercury starved/EOL on a cold start and then they warm up just like HIDs. I don't know if it's the lamps or if it's just the type of lamp it is... :-\



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on May 31, 2014, 12:29:06 AM
Mine did but it's decently bright.  Not sure of the brand, they're just generic "PL-13w 2700K" lamps.  They seemed dimmer than I thought but are about the same as a 13w 2700K spiral CFL (a 13w GE Helical, my house has tons of those)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on May 31, 2014, 04:54:44 PM
I actually find the 13W preheat PL lamps to be dimmer than the 13W spirals but I would never say that out loud lol. I find that they flicker a little bit too. i wish I could find themin color temps besides warm white too. I'm sure I can buy other color temps but I haven't had to buy PL lamps yet because every adapter I've gotten has come with unused warm white lamps so I just keep those.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 02, 2014, 12:00:12 AM
I usually use the stock /WW lamps but when they quit I use CW...I would like to find 6500K PL13 lamps. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 03, 2014, 01:29:53 AM
I've seen 3 70s Westy F0CW blackenders this week! (I already knew about all 3).  Two are in a vintage-looking 2-lamp strip which is visibly disconnected in someone's shed and the other is next to a warm white Sylvania Lifeline in a cheapo 90s shoplight in the same friend's garage with the Lithonia F48?HO fixtures (lamped with May 2003 Altos which are BRIGHT!) I'm going to try to get that Lifeline and those blackenders. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 03, 2014, 07:07:47 AM
Nice! Try and see if you can get the disconnected fixture and its lamps. :D Also, if the lifeline and westie are in a newer junky shoplite, maybe it's safe to bet that those lamps are from the fixture that got replaced by the shoplite? i wonder wht fixture the lifeline and third westie were in originally...

I heard the HO Philips lamps tend to go mercury starved so pretty good if they've done around ten years of service.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 08, 2014, 06:03:56 PM
Possibly an older/vintage shoplight...I don't know. 
These almost never get used so I don't think they've had a chance to yet...
I'm thinking I'm "electropathic" (Joking of course).  I've joked about the coincidence of driving under cycling HPS streetlights and having them go off when I pass under...I think my power is culminating since I've had multiple motor-driven power tools (Cordless DeWalt drill, DeWalt router, leaf blower, etc) burn up while I was around...and all during the last couple weeks! And I had the "talking" smoke/carbon monoxide detector in my bedroom go off for no reason last night! (Scared the cr@p out of my Dad and I at 11PM).  Funny thing is, I was just describing that to someone that day...of course I'm sure nothing is wrong with me except that I'm plagued by irony...always have been my whole life...
On a different note, I might be getting the first of several of those woodshop lights soon (In the next couple days) or if not then next fall.  (I'll be gone all summer)...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 08, 2014, 10:08:31 PM
LOL yeah ironic things have happened to me. I tend to interfere with radio signals lol. I don't know if i should take it as a ft joke or if I have magic radio-signal-interuppting powers lol.

nice that you're getting some of the lights! I went to the ReStore yesterday. pics in the galelrt on the GoL and LG. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 09, 2014, 10:14:20 PM
All we can figure is I must have farted in my sleep...although another thing happened: One of the almost-brand-new GE F32T8/SPX35s in my bathroom light mysteriously lost vacuum! It's on instant-start and frequently switched, and didn't even have blackening yet!
Yeah I'm excited too! I'll keep ya guys posted...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on June 10, 2014, 05:29:34 PM
Ahh that's interesting. I guess it's not rare for a lamp to loose vacuum on an IS ballast but it's odd that it had little use. Maybe it was hit or something by accident? How long as it been in?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 11, 2014, 12:57:08 AM
I would say about two months.  I could check phone records for a personal event to be sure because I remember being on the phone for something important while watching the GE F40CW/RS/WM in there before fail...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 12, 2014, 07:18:22 PM
Hmm maybe there was a tiny little crack that worsened over time?

I finally cleaned the sixth Holophane Prismalume highbay today. I washed the other five before the winter but the sixth one I didn't get to until today lol. I did the other five at the same time but kept the sith one assembled so I'd know how to put the other five back together and then never got around to the last one lol. Well, did it today. Now i need to find either six 400W MH/MV ballasts or six 350W PSMH ballasts for cheap...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 13, 2014, 01:07:38 AM
Try a local scrapyard or the Restore and keep checking...even yardsales and thrift stores! Chances are one or more will eventually turn up!
I'm noticing things in common among us lighting enthusiasts: cats, excavators, plumbing, basic construction knowedge, vintage radios/tuners/amplifiers, etc!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 13, 2014, 07:06:22 PM
LOL I'm really only into lighting. I have a small minute interest in plumbing and general construction though. I like cats but I'm allergic lol. I haven't met anyone else that likes automatic door decals though lol. well there's two people on flickr but they live far far away lol.

BTW, my worst nightmare has finally come true. GE DISCONTINUED the T17 lamps!!!! :o :'(  :o :'(  :o :'( I will have two F90T17s in my possession and will have JUST enough lamps to give them each two working lamps (thanks to my late grandpa who bought a pair of spare T17s, the poor guy blew 100 bucks on a pair of bulbs.). So I'll have them working but I won't have any replacement lamps. I have plenty of starters for the two fixtures though. I'll probably never need to replace the starters since they're cut-out starters. Plus my grandpa kept a stash of regular non-manual reset Sylvania starters with the triangular logo with the electricity bolt.

I'll scoop up the starters the next time I'm down there alone and when the time comes, I'll grab the lamps and fixture. They're not going anywhere. I'll get the one at my great-aunts too. My great-aunt has the T17, an 8ft 2X F40T12 wall mount preheat light that doesn't work (haven't figured out why), and two more of the Western Electric Spec'ed F20T12/TS lights downstairs. She also has a 2X F40T12/RS strip and a single lamp F40/RS strip. I'm converting the strips to T8 when I convert her outlets from 2-prong to 3-prong. I'll bring a pair of F40s and FS4 starters to see if i can get the 8ft T12 preheater going too. We don't even know where the switch it or if it's connected lol. I swear i saw it lit one time but i don't remember. The lamps were a Westy and a mainlighter but the westie didn't work in the single lamp strip so we tossed it. The mainlighter does work though (its cool white). It's in the F40 LPF single lamp strip since the strip's lamp died. So it's currently lamp-less. The starters are manual reset too. looks like a 40s era fixture.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 14, 2014, 12:46:03 AM
Nice! Do you know what "Water hammer" is? How about OSB vs plywood?
Nice! Keep wading though Restore and you might find some F90T17 lamps...
As for the 8' preheater: First try new (but tested in a working fixture previously, then again to make sure a bad ballast didn't blow them) lamps.  (Like 34 watt Altos LOL).  Next, try new starters. If that doesn't work, try new sockets.  If STILL nothing, disconnect the ballast from the line wires and see if you get voltage there.  If yes, the ballast is likely bad, although I suppose you could try new wirenuts or something.  If not, the ballast is likely good, so either take the light down or, if you have no space, convert it to T8 in the meantime.
I would save both F40 strips...those vintage 2XF40 strips are cool! The single-lamp one is a great opportunity for a little preheat conversion project!
I just had another thought: If that Westy blackender didn't work, I wonder if maybe somebody stuck in a series rapid start ballast in there at some point over the years/decades? If so the other lamp might not have worked.  If so the original ballast is likely dead and/or long gone. 
What did the single-lamp strip have originally? And doesn't the dual-lamp one have a Sylvania Gro-lux from the 70s?
Another update on the woodshop lights: The first two replacement fixtures have arrived and the CFL reflector lamps will hopefully show up tomorrow.  I likely won't be there to remove the vintage shoplights they're replacing, but I imagine I'll get the one with the broken socket (Which I broke changing a lamp; I have a socket to fix it but he said just don't worry, they're coming down anyway) along with it's identical companion.  (Both are Sears fixtures like mine).  There's another vintage-looking shoplight I'd like someday but it's nice and bright and flicker-free with I assume a full-power, PCB-laden, 40-watt-only ballast.  I've warned him to not use 34 watt lamps in that light.  It currently has a GE kitchen/bath and Sylvania Design 50.  He likes that fixture as much as I do! He even knows our favorite: 70s Universal Therm-O-Matics, from personal experience! (Albeit changing out dead ones).  He also knows Advance Kool-Koils, as he had two but they died and he gave them to me...too bad...they were full power but post PCB.  Ironically there's photos in that room of the previous shop, with those fixtures lit! You can't see the Sears shoplight I already have though.  Granted, that was 20 years ago in a different house.  I'm getting really excited! I'm not sure if they'll come with their lamps but I'm fine either way since I have plently of (era appropriate) lamps for them.  (GE Mainlighters). 
We also talk about construction, plumbing, etc. under those very lights! He's also into all things vintage!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 14, 2014, 08:17:15 AM
Nope don't know whaterhammer but i learned about OSB versus plywood in my construction class. My construction teacher basically summed it up with that OSB is a cheap, sucky alternative to plywood lol.

Yeah I will bring a pair of lamps and a pair of starters and a voltmeter. It's definetly still preheat. Because when i remember it being lit, one lamp came on way before the other. i think the main issue here is that we can't find the switch lol. There's so many switches for everything it's crazy! lol

nah i don't really want the strip lights. the single lamp one has a robertson ballast and it used to have a 34W red etch GE but now has the /CW mainlighter from the preheater. The 2-lamp strip indeed has a lifeline etch Sylvania GroLux and a 35W red etched GE. All 3 lamps were red etched GEs but only one is left because I didn't know any better when i was younger.


Ahh glad you're getting some lights from the woodshop! yeah my only full power RS ballasts are Therm-O-Matics.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on June 17, 2014, 07:00:07 PM
whew, windy and rainy day today. It was nice in the morning and early afternoon though. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on June 17, 2014, 10:46:05 PM
ah i think that's headed my way next. wednesday is gonna be close to 90F. :o Warmest day so far this year.

the next time i go to the restore, it will be the putnam connecticut store where i got the two MV lamps and saw the square fresnel glass recessed lights. i wonder if they still have some left...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on June 20, 2014, 02:22:40 PM
Yeah I've even knowingly tossed vintage F40s that didn't work...IMO it's useless if it doesn't work...I can appreciate a working lamp so much more than a dead one...
Who makes the older 2X40 strip? I wonder if that ballast is a Universal Therm-O-Matic? LOL it would not surprise me! For me it's usually (albeit dead) Advance Kool-Koils.
Get that Mainlighter lamp for sure! A 34 watter will work decently on that single-lamp LPF ballast if you have one you want to use up (Like a 34w Alto or something)
Yeah I'll score the fixture(s) at the end of the summer...they're probably already removed but I'm gone for the summer.
I was in True Value yesterday and checked out their lamps/ballasts...I saw some /CW Ecolux 34w Watt-Misers, some "True Value" new phosphor F40s, (Went back to the TV name instead of "Westpointe" but the sticker said "Wespointe"-Universal Bulb".  I also saw some slimlines there but they were "True Value" 60w energy savers (new phosphor C41).  Interesting but I'd rather have 75 watt lamps...I'll look for some Sylvania 75s at SBS but if not maybe I'll buy a pair as spares for when my Sylvania Supersavers die...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on June 20, 2014, 04:20:44 PM
Yeah I agree, dead lamps are useless to me as well. Plus my space is very limited. If it works (albeit not that well) I'll keep it and just not use it because one it dies it's out lol.

I've never opened the two lamp fixture so I don't know what kind of ballast is in it. LOL yeat imagine if it was another Universal Therm-o-matic? lol. Yep, when i convert the light I have every intention of keeping the old lamps and ballasts. The two lamp fixture is getting a 2X F32T8/IS Accupro ballast (rebranded as McCann Lighting) and the single lamp fixture is getting a single lamp Philips Advance 32W PL ballast that runs F32T8s fine. The ballast is programmed start too. I already put the sockets on the balalst leads so all I have to do when I go is remove the old ballasts and sockets and install the new ballasts and sockets. I'll keep the removed sockets and reuse them elsewhere.

BTW, remember you had asked me to get some Sylvania F40/WX lamps? Well I got two today. they were $4.99 each so i took off the $4.99 stickers and swapped them with a couple $2.99 stickers on some nearby Sylvania CWX lamps lol. I don't see the reason for a two dollar difference in price just because the lamp color is different... Anyway, they're the same color as 3500K lamps, just with an oldschool F40/WX etch instead of F40T12/WX. They say White Deluxe on them too and were made in 2013. Nice lamps but they seem a little dim IMO. They're probably just 87 CRI 3500K lamps but they're really cool lamps just from the oldschool style lamp code.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 11, 2014, 07:07:17 PM
I know Philips does something like F40T12/DAYLIGHT DELUXE nowadays for an ordering code (I used my favorite color as am example)
I stopped over at the woodshop teacher's house for a visit a few days ago and they have removed two of the Sears fixtures as well as a modern residential Lithonia? wraparound.  They all have LPF ballasts though...the Sears lights must have had their ballasts cooked by the attack of the 34 watt lamps in the mid 90s LOL...I even said so then!
Ballasts are an Advance (Lithonia fixture) and a MagneTek and a US Fluorescent.  I'm also getting about a dozen lamps, inter alia a GE F40CW with the pre- 1992 etch, another Sylvania Design 50, and tons of Ace and True Value F40SP41 lamps (made by GE).  I didn't grab anything this time though since I was in a hurry and did not have the option to transport them home at the time.  I might also get that 90s-Ecolux era GE F40C50 too...it's in a Power-Products shoplight (That flickered horribly, espeically with /950 lamps!)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on July 12, 2014, 06:57:10 PM
Hmm I didn't know that. I just try to stay away from Philips lol. I know Sylvania uses the /850, /841, etc codes for their T8 lamps but just use the simple oldschool etches for T12s. GE uses their SP-whatever etches and last I checked Philips had used the same style as Sylvania for T8s. Yuck! Foolish NPF/LPF ballasts. >:(

Yeah the 87CRI 5000K lamps don't flicker like the 90CRI 5000K lamps. I actually like the 87CRI ones better. I have a case of 10 of the 90CRI Sylvania Design 50 lamps but have six of the GE CX50 lamps (87CRI) lamps which I actually like better even though I'm a Sylvania fanatic.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 12, 2014, 11:34:33 PM
I like all 3 major brands...
I'm thinking I might have to go back on a major promise and start buying 34 watt lamps since I now have many LPF-ballasted fixtures that underdrive 40 watt lamps...
General rule of thumb for HPF and LPF ballasts I thought of last night: .80/.85 amp- 40w only.  .75a and under: 34w ok.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 13, 2014, 05:57:39 PM
Eh I'll buy Philips Altos if they're at a discounted price (like a buck a piece) or free. I won'tpay full price for Altos. Same way I won't pay full price for 34W lamps.

Yeah I'll use 34W lamps on ballasts rated for them but first they must pass a heat test. I will run the ballast with 40W tubes for a few hours and see how hot it gets. then the next day i will run the ballast with 34W lamps and see how much hotter it gets with 34W lamps. My Cooper turret's Mark III ballast passed the test a-okay. I know i can run 34W lamps in single lamp NPF strip lights but I never think to do that. My few 34W lamps are buried by 40W lamps so I usually just grab a 40W lamp.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 15, 2014, 09:50:33 PM
Yeah I might start having to look for/buy them with all the LPF residential ballasts I have/am getting!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 21, 2014, 08:51:08 PM
 I updated my website today.  (http://myvisittojoemaurathjrs.weebly.com/)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 22, 2014, 12:03:04 AM
Looks good! I have a Weebly but haven't updated it in YEARS...
I might pick up the first wave of woodshop lights and about a dozen lamps (GE F40CW, True Value and Ace SP41, Sylvania Design 50 and maybe a GE Chroma 50) tomorrow when I'm in that town/area (My job requires traveling a lot). 
I plan to try the mercury-migration thing on all those LPF ballasts!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 22, 2014, 12:13:34 PM
Thanks. Good luck with those fixtures and lamps! I love getting new lights and I'm sure the feeling is the same for all collectors. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Lil'Cinnamon on July 22, 2014, 03:13:18 PM
Hmm, I made this topic, but I never come in here. xD

I need to do more stuff on this site, I mean, I own this place. xD But even so I'm glad this still has activity.

Not quite sure all what to do though, this place isn't all too active, but I'm happy that it is anyway.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on July 22, 2014, 08:28:30 PM
Yeah I've noticed that the activity on the site has dropped quite a bit the past two years or so. Jace used to do contests like "Design your own Cobrahead" and we had a contest for picking the gallery album thumbnails. Maybe we can pick new icons for the gallery? Probably more than half the members on the site have been inactive for more than two years.

Maybe send an email/annoucement to everyone asking why they're inactive. Like if it's because of the site or if it's because they just got busy, left the hobby, or whatever. There's a good number of us that are on at least once a week. Me and a few others are usually on every day or every other day. The GoL is a great site and thank you for keeping the site alive! :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 23, 2014, 12:52:10 PM
Yeah thank you! I used to be more active but I have all sorts of non-lighting things going on right now...LOL
Yeah I'll post pics when I get them!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 23, 2014, 05:18:23 PM
Well today I replaced all the CFLs in my kitchen and dining room with new A-shaped Maxlite 13W CFLs. Three of the four lamps in the litchen light were already MaxLite CFLs since they replaced failed GE Helicals but the other five CFLs still worked. I replaced them all since the A-shaped ones look nicer and now they all match. Plus, the old CFLs had yellowed plastic. Not that yellowed but I just replaced them. They're pretty close to 10 years old so they've already payed for themselves through energy savings.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 23, 2014, 10:31:54 PM
I remember in the early-mid 2000s the CFLs (Which were programmed electronic rapid-start!) would yellow slightly after some use.  I hadn't seen that in years until some "Western Family" (Feit) 23w 2700K ones I have started turning BROWN! (The plastic must not be UV-retarding).
I've also seen CFLs (And linear fluorescent lamps) whose appearance darkens after many years of (especially for long hours) use...CFLs "gray", linear fluorescent lamps can appear "Grainy" and F34CWs appear yellowish when off, and get a nasty greenish-yellow light output.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 23, 2014, 11:38:11 PM
Yep there's two programmed start CFLs in my house (GE helicals). They're really cool since they're programmed start. They look like regular Helicals though. I get nervous running CFLs base-up and I'm guessing the plastic has dried out after nearly 10 years so I don't want to take any chances. The only thing about the A-shaped CFLs is that you can't tell if the plastic around the ends of the spiral is discolored.

No one else in my family uses CFLs, and we only have a few besides the eight i installed. My aunt and uncle (the parents of my cousins whos grandma has preheaters in the garage; their houses are attached) have CFL reflector lamps in some of their recessed cans though and have LED floods outside.

All three sets of grandparents refuse to use CFLs. My aunt and uncle with the house that has the basement full of preheaters can't use them since nearly every switch in the house is a dimmer switch. My great-aunt says CFLs give off a gross light: "I just don't like them".

My parents had joined the bandwagon in the mid-2000s, trying out CFLs in the kitchen, dining room, all three bedrooms, outside, and in the basement. I replaced my room's CFLs with LEDs in either 2011 or 2012, and they still work (as they should!). My brother's room had two CFLs quit working so he's got one programmed start CFL and two 40W incandescents. My parents have the other programmed start CFL in their room and have either another IS CFL or an incandescent. Out of the four basement dome lights (I'll admit that I always refer to them as "boob lights" lol), one kept the same lamp all these 11 years (40 or 60W incandescent) and three had CFLs. Two had their CFLs replaced with 60W incandescents. Then all three had 75W equivalent halogens installed but one of them died and now has a 60W incandescent. I plan to get a new halogen for it.

My parent's bathroom has one 60W incandescent and a four-lamp candelebra base 40W globe lamp vanity fixture. My bathroom has a 53W (75W=) halogen lamp and a three-lamp 60W medium base globe vanity fixture with all three original 11-year-old lamps. The hallway light upstairs had both original 52W Sylvania incandescent SuperSaver lamps in it. The light over the sink in the kitchen has two lamps. Dunno what though... The five-lamp chandelier over the stairs has all five original incandescents. The one keyless lampholder that I haven't replaced out of the four (its in the garage) still has its original 90W incandescent supersaver. When the house was built and the fixtures were installed i think the electrician had used all Sylvania SuperSavers (90W in the basement keyless holders and 52W in everything else though the outside lights had clear 60W Sylvanias). The three closet lights all had Sylvania F20/CWs from 2003. Mine is the only one with the original lamp, though i converted mine from TS to PH.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 24, 2014, 12:40:18 AM
I have lots of those GE Helicals but mine are instant-start. 
I also find the fake incandescent look of 2700K triphosphor commonly found in CFLs an icky color sometimes, though it seems to vary lamp by lamp.  Newer ones seem whiter/pinker.  I like it for the most part, though some people might find it sickening and dingy.  I can always tell an incandescent from a CFL though by it's light.
Dimmer switches: I've never had or tried a dimmable CFL but none of my switches are dimmers. One used to be, but it got fried by modified-sine-wave inverter electricity and now only turns on and off, just like a regular light switch.  I'm using a CFL there, so I can't use a dimmer, and I don't really miss it that much anyway!
I remember some neighbors giving my late mother and I some Commercial Electric 2700K 14w spirals, which lasted a long time in partial use (Sometimes in service, other times sitting out of use in the light bulb bag).  None had dies by the time I cleaned out the house in January of this year (2014) after she passed.  I remember that neighbor's house had lots of those bulbs too.
My Dad was rather hard to convince.  In the past, he'd tried them and was unimpressed, as he told me over the phone once.  I think a big thing in the early days of CFLs was that people expected them to come on at full brightness immediately, just like the incandescents had as long as the baby-boomer generation could remember.  Us milennials know better!
Interestingly, though, from that time I have a "Conserv-Energy" (Feit) 13w spiral from that early era (Installation date written on it is 2003) and it's in use to this day.  It's been around: I assume my Dad bought it, then it ended up in my honorary grandfather's possession on his boat, the boat was sold, and 2 owners later it was given back to me! I now have it in daily use on my boat. 
Finally, in 2009, while living off-grid on a 3000-watt generator, we decided they might be worth another try to try to reduce the gas bill and wear and tear on the generator.  We bought a 4 pack of "Western Family" (Again, Feit) 23w spirals.  I remember him going for the 100w replacement instead of the 60w since "They'll only be as bright as a 60w".  (Again, people not used to the warm up time!) They stuck out of the decorative fixtures in that house, being larger than the 40 and 60 watt incandescents they replaced, and were "too bright and glary" and "the light is funny" and all that stuff.  So we ended up taking a few out of service.  Then there was a CFL grant in my area with TCP-made 23w 2700K spirals...same thing.  Finally, in my current house, he started to tolerate them, though 5000K ones get negative comments.  I use preheat circline adpaters wherever space allows and I don't think he particularly cares for those either...
I fired up my Lithonia 8ft slimline fixture for the first time in over a month just now for a couple minutes.  I really need to find 75 watt lamps for that thing, although I half know I'll still use the 60w ones till they die.  The local True Value has 60w C41 GE-made self-branded F96T12s, which I might end up buying a pair of as spares, but I'm always looking out for (even used and warm white) 75 watters.
I have a pair of 3w "Designer's Edge" 6400K PAR LEDs outside my front door and they're not the brightest thing in the world by any means but enough to see the door and porch and that section of driveway and can be left on all night on a 12v battery bank running on an inverter without running the batteries down like 150w PARs would. 
I actually just bought a 4 pack of GE 72w halogens but haven't tried them yet.  I'm a CFL user but just curious what they're like and what the lifespan really is.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 24, 2014, 02:34:04 AM
I almost thought the ballast in the Sears shoplight died tonight...the light has been seldomly used since I moved it to my storage loft and hadn't been turned on at all in over a month. Luckily it turned out that extension cord (Power is unavailable up there so I have a cord running to the garage) was plugged into a currently-dead outlet! In fact, I could see through the cracks in the subfloor (storage loft is above the garage/shop) that it instant-started! (That ballast has always tended to do that).  I remember very well when I first got that fixture, carried it about a mile in my arms (I walk my daily commute) with sawdust falling off it the whole way, brought it home, opened it up and saw "General Electric" "Bonus Line Ballast" and "Line current .80 amp" and was thrilled to find this was much more than just a run-of-the mill modern shoplight (I was much less educated about vintage fluorescents then).  I didn't EVEN try it with the 90s 34w cool white GE Watt-Miser lamps that came with it, but immediately stuck in 40w lamps.  I also broke a socket trying to put the reflector back on...but once that was fixed and it lit up for the first time outside of it's previous home that was the best thing I'd seen that day for sure!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 24, 2014, 10:57:43 AM
Ahh i don't have any dimmer switches in my house either.  I guess my parents really don't care what we use as long as it gives off light. My mom said she doesn't mind the warm up time for the Maxlite CFLs (these things start off REALLY dim, the Helicals are usually pretty close to full brightness when first turned on).

I've only ever seen "soft white" CFLs for sale. My aunt and uncle have a couple cooler looking ones and I'll admit, it seems weird having that color come from them. I always associate cooler kelvin light with linear fluorescents, not compact lamps.

Oh the GE halogen lamps are complete junk. They actually dim out like mercs! And then they get dimmer and dimmer until they don't work. This can happen within an hour or take up to a year but I do not recommend GE halogens. I bought Sylvania halogens and they performed much better. one was a dud out of the box but it was due to a broken filament, not loss of vacuum.

Ahh when I got my 1973 shoplite, I actually had plans to chop it down to a F15T12 fixture. :o When I had posted a pic of the ballast and someone said it was from 1973 I changed my mind, repainted the fixture, put it back together, and installed it in my utility room, replacing the stupid Lithonia F17T8 basket wrap. How did the outlet die? Was it just not connected to power or did something actually go wrong?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 24, 2014, 09:12:21 PM
I don't mind that warmup time in some cases...for example in a bathroom or bedside lamp it would not blind you at 2AM but instead would give your eyes time to adjust!
I see both...I only plan to buy 5000K or 6500K ones in the future, though.
It'll be interesting to see if that is the case with mine...I'll keep you guys posted.  I guess they could be moved to places where lower light levels are required as they age.
Interesting!
Also I forgot to add I have a couple of those feminine-part-looking light fixtures in my house! My Dad coined that one...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 24, 2014, 09:23:32 PM
I scored big on lighting goodies today! Eight fixtures! First is a Lithonia shoplight with an Osram-Sylvania LPF rapid start ballast which warns against the use of 34 watt lamps.  Oddly it only lights one lamp, but like it's wired in shunted mode! Ideas anyone?
Next is a pair of Sears shoplights like the one I already had.  One has a US Fluorescent LPF ballast I'm currently doing a mercury-migration test with (We'll see how it goes; I'm leaving it on overnight), and the other has a MagneTek LPF ballast. 
Then there is a Lithonia wraparound sans diffuser with a little Advance LPF (.47a line current with F40s!) ballast.  I put it up on the garage ceiling but have not wired it to power at the other end yet.
Then there was a Lithonia 2XF20T12 trigger-start striplight with a Universal Therm-O-Matic ballast, as well as the single-lamp version of said fixture and ballast.  Also a single-lamp Lampi undercabinet light and a Lampi 2-lamp fixture, both of the latter being preheat. 
Lamps: a pair of old-etch GE F20T12/CW (One is EOL though), a post-Mainlighter but still old-etch GE F40CW, a Sylvania F40/DSGN50, a True-Value F40SP41, as well as the Westpointe and Ace versions of same (All GE-made of course).
So yeah, my house is currently full of lighting goodies awaiting placement!


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on July 25, 2014, 12:38:25 PM
Yeah they don't blind you which is good I guess. :) Yeah future halogens that I buy will strictly be Sylvanias.

Ah yeah i saw all your goodies. Nice additions! 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 25, 2014, 02:34:39 PM
Thanks! The garage was a mess for awhile yesterday while I was trying new ballasts and lamps!
I have yet to post the single lamp F20 ballast, as well as the Lampi preheat stuff, which I might just gut for parts to convert the trigger start fixtures to preheat when their ballasts quit someday. 
I found out on LG the F20T12 GE dates to June 1985 and the F40CW GE dates to 1986...just barely post-Mainlighter!
The ballast that lights only one lamp trips it thermal cutout too since it's basically shunting itself for one lamp which is worse than 2 34w actually! I will remove the reflector so the ballast is operating in free air and see how it fares that way...it's being used as an indirect fixture lighting the ceiling.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 25, 2014, 04:36:48 PM
Ah I guess I was right to guess that the F20 GE was from the 80s. It was just a blind guess though lol. I'd personally junk any ballasts that trip the thermal protection or only light ome lamp but that's just me. :P lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 25, 2014, 09:32:13 PM
I save anything that's not totally dead...I'm going to try taking off the reflector so it's operating in free air and see how it does.  I also have a Universal therm-o-matic that lit one lamp very dimly wired normally, just as if the other one was burned out or missing, so I wired it for single lamp operation (both reds to one end, both blues to the other and cap off the yellows with wirenuts).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 26, 2014, 10:09:23 PM
I'm going to install the two new (to me) Sears shoplights in my storage loft and the Lithonia 1XF20T12 strip in the stairwell going up there.  I'm considering putting the 2XF20T12 one above my wood-burning stove replacing a clip light with a spiral compact fluorescent that's been there for the last few years. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 26, 2014, 11:45:07 PM
Sounds good! Once I get another F40 shoplight I'll install it in the garage, but not before fusing it! I will *eventually* get to fusing me current fixtures in service and all my fluorescents in general so I don't worry about fusing them later when I want to put them into service.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 27, 2014, 01:34:34 AM
Just stick that Power Products fixture up there! You could even use 34 watt lamps on that ballast if you wanted...Or that one from Restore with the Universal Therm-O-Matic ballast...
Actually I think I will put a LOA F15T8 undercabinet light I got less than an hour ago above the wood stove...not sure what will become of the 2X20 strip but maybe my bedroom ceiling?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 27, 2014, 02:36:03 PM
So far not much luck on the mercury migration...I think I'll pull the plug on it and try the MagneTek ballast today and see what happens...then I want to try both of the F20s and see if they will migrate.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 27, 2014, 03:21:27 PM
The  power products shoplight is F32T8/IS now and it doesn't have a chain assembly. IIRC, it must be hardmounted, which isn't gonna happen. :P Plus that fixture is for my late-grandpa' T17 replacement. The one from the ReStore with the 1977 Therm-O-Matic ballast is in the shed and all taped up (to keep out the bugs) so I don't want to install it at this time. We don't need a light there right now since the turret casts some light over there and the 90W incandescent throws light accross the whole garage (though it's not as bright as a fluorescent is lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 27, 2014, 07:24:29 PM
Well, Here's my post about what i have on my plate as far as lighting upgrades within the family:

My cousin's grandma's garage and basement:
3X F40T12/PH shoplites in the garage with modern lamps
3X F40T12/PH shoplites in the basement with vintage lamps, all 6 fixtures identical
3X F32T8 shoplites stacked in the garage to replace the garage preheaters and 8 NOS Philips F32/741 lamps from 2005
What I need: three shoplites with pull chains; four F32T8 4100K lamps

My great-aunt's house:
1X F90T17 preheater
1X F20T12/RS Western Electric reflector fixture, hardwired with KEN-RAD F20/W lamps
1X F20T12/RS Western Electric reflector fixture, with pullchain retrofitted on to one of the endcaps with KEN-RAD F20/W lamps
1X F40T12/RS single lamp NPF strip light with GE F40/CW mainlighter
1X F40T12/RS two-lamp strip light with a GE 35W T12 and a Sylvania Gro-Lux
1X F40T12 two lamp 8ft preheater with no lamps and FS-40/400 manual reset starters. Electrical condition unknown
What i need: 2X two-lamp F17T8 or two-lamp F32T8 fixtures to replace the F20 Western Electric fixtures with 3500K lamps; possibly a fixture to replace the 8ft F40T12 wall mount preheater. If so, probably two single lamp F32 strips from the restore mounted end-to-end...
What I have: single and double lamp T8 ballasts for the strip lights with 3500K lamps; incandescent pull-chain with outlet to replace the F90T17 and it's remotely mounted pull-chain switch

My dad's parents' house (my late grandpa's fixtures):
4X F40T12/RS Wetern Electric fixture (three in use, one leaning against the wall in the basment not hooked up)
1X F90T17 preheat louvered fixture, just like the one at my great-aunt's house
1X NOS 1980s LOA shoplite with Philips F40/CW lamps in the opened box (no replacement needed, as it's not in service)
1X F20T12 three-lamp preheater (this light isn't on my radar for replacement)
What i need: Three two-lamp F32T8 hard-mount fixtures (can be strip lights but preferably wrap lights since they look better IMO. I will also need six F32T8 lamps of any color temperature. Probably end up using 3500K to match the T17's replacement.
what i have: Power Products fixture with a 2X F32T8 ballast and 3500K lamps to replace the T17 fixture.

My grandpa's autobody shop:
1x F40T12 preheater in the bathroom
3X F40T12/RS four-lamp 2X4 lensed troffers
1X F40T12/RS NPF strip light
2X F96T12/HO industrial fixtures
several F96T12 slimline fixtures
What I have: (1) 2X F32T8 shoplite to replace the bathroom preheater. With 3500K F32T8s. Other fixtures will be upgraded by the request and expense of my grandpa. I'm not a magician that can pop new retrofit supplies out of thin air lol... So I have everything I need to replace my grandpa's preheater. Just gotta get down there somehow.

So Recap of What I Need to Get for Each House:
- Three shoplites with pullchains (just the cheap plug-in kind, i can cut the cords off lol) with four F32T8/CW lamps (to match the T8s that are in storage in the garage)
- Two fixtures, one with a pull-chain, to replace the F20/RS Western Electric fixtures, complete with 3500K lamps; something to replace the 8ft F40T12 fixture (again, probably two single lamp strips I can convert to T8) and I'll need 3500K lamps for that too.
- Three F32T8 hardmount fixtures (preferably wraps, either traditional or, yes, basket wraps. :P ) complete with lamps, again, probably 3500K

That's all I need. Not actually a whole lot, though unless I can get these items at the ReStore, it could turn out expensive. And hopefully the stuff at the ReStore is in decent condition and only lightly used so I don't have to repaint them. The white paint turns yucky rather easy if the application it's mounted in isn't ideal.

Now which fixtures will I be tackling first? Hard to say. Probably the two T17s and the preheater at my grandpa's shop since I have everything I need to complete those jobs. I will also be retrofitting my great-aunt's strips to T8. After that, maybe my cousin's grandma's garage and basement. I'd like to do them together since i don't go there too often and she's technically not my family so I don't want to pester her any more than necessary. And my great-aunt's F20/RS fixtures will be after that, unless I find fixtures to replace them sooner. I'll end up replacing my aunt, grandma, and late-grandpa's F40 Western Electric garage lights last since i see them every Friday and I don't have to worry about any potential roadblocks popping up before i can get to them.

However, that's seventeen lights, then add the four fixtures I'll be getting from my aunt and uncle and that's 21 fixtures, I'm thinking I won't be able to squeeze nearly TWO DOZEN fixtures in my shed. I'm gonna have to work something out. Maybe a family member would let me stash some of the fixtures somewhere? I'd hate to flat-out ask if i can use their space as a storage facility though. But if anyone offers I won't refuse!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 27, 2014, 11:50:32 PM
A big project! When I move out of this house I'm leaving all the LPF-ballasted fixtures but might take the one Sears shoplight with the GE Bonusline ballast, the two Metalux/Gibson troffers from my (by then) old middle/high school, the Lithonia 2XF96T12 striplight, and the Lithonia 2XF20T12 strip.  And of course all my random lamps and ballasts.  I'll also likely take the Electripak 175w MV yardblaster.  But I'm ending up with this house (It's left to me in the will) so I'll get all the stuff back someday anyway...but I'm taking the most vintage/valuable with me just in case...although it will likely end up BACK at this house someday...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 28, 2014, 12:30:08 PM
I wish i could get rid of the "Professionnal lighting engineer" thing out from below the five light bulbs. Makes me sound snobby and Jace spelled "Professional" wrong so it makes me look stupid too lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on July 29, 2014, 11:20:17 PM
I wish i could get rid of the "Professionnal lighting engineer" thing out from below the five light bulbs. Makes me sound snobby and Jace spelled "Professional" wrong so it makes me look stupid too lol.

I might be able to pull some strings tehehe, I fixed the spelling though lol



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 30, 2014, 01:01:27 PM
lol thanks.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on July 30, 2014, 09:34:45 PM
I visited a secondhand store today in Sitka, AK with some other people and didn't buy anything but passed up a NOS modern Sylvania F30T12/CW, some 400w coated MH lamps, some Sylvania "Bug-foiler" lamps in the green box with the rainbow edging, a NOS LOA Quad-Lite, and a Philips Daylight Deluxe FC8T9.  They also had a couple vintage radios but no vintage stereo tuners (That I saw anyway; the place is called the "Junk Trunk" and you have to shuffle between the mountains of stuff.  Also there's a party store in the middle of it...
BTW ever notice secondhand stores (ReStore, GoodWill, etc) always have the classic rock radio stations playing in them? This one did too!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on July 30, 2014, 10:23:50 PM
Hmm the Restores I've been to don't typically play music.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 05, 2014, 11:26:38 AM
Almost every secondhand store I've ever been in has had good music playing...
I might add the aforementioned one didn't have any scary wiring, being in a modern building..


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 05, 2014, 03:07:41 PM
whew! been busy with all my new toys. :D The M-250R and M-400 are all cleaned up and working. The TuDor's wiring is all good but It needs a number of new things. New terminal block, new slipfitter bolts, new screws (old ones are rusted in place and must be drilled out) and it could use a new PC socket too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 05, 2014, 08:32:54 PM
I know the feeling, when you get a bunch of goodies at once and have to mess with them all at once...
Today I was in a CarQuest auto parts store that's entirely lit by 8' slimlines, a rarity nowadays! Lamps were all True Value (GE) 60w cool white with lots of end banding but none out.  Also saw some older-looking turret F40s in a welding/diesel mechanic's shop (DIM with CWX lamps and being covered in smoke/grease).  Also saw a 4-lamp F40 Sunbeam Visionaire wraparound in someone's garage, though it was missing parts and only the outer lamps were installed/lit.  (They also run a marine navigation electronics shop out of that garage I might add; they're my preferred boat electrician).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 06, 2014, 01:05:23 AM
I installed those GE 72w halogens in place of 13w spiral 2700K CFLs and they're really bright! We'll see how long they last...they're reminiscent of those GE "Basic" and Ace branded fake-frost bulbs from the 90s and 2000s...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 06, 2014, 10:29:02 AM
Interesting how they used True Value lamps, a store brand lamp, in their own store. Seems like store brand lamps are more of a residential thing...

Aw No you bought GE halogens? :P The ones in my basement have dimmed badly. I replaced one with a 60W incandescent and the incandescent was brighter (and the halogens are 75W rated replacement, using 53W) I plan to replace them all with Sylvania halogens since apparently GE halogens suck...

BTW, I'm going to my grandpa's shop this weekend! ;D He's helping me fix up my OV-15 TuDor light that has corrosion issues and a few other things too. I plan to bring the F32T8 fixture to see if I can replace the bathroom preheater. And I'll take pics of all the lights!

Also, this Thursday I'm going to my great-aunt's house to change her outlets to three-prong grounded outlets. I'm also going to see if she'll let me convert the garage strips to T8 and try to troubleshoot the 8ft preheater. But changing the outlets will take all day on its own.

First I need to figure out how many circuits there are and what outlets are on which circuit (basically by shutting OFF one breaker at a time and seeing which outlets loose power).

Second, I need to remove all the outlets and stretch out the wires and then, one circuit at a time, test each outlet for voltage (with the breaker ON). Because the wires are all separated and "broken apart", the voltage should be zero at each one except for one wire, which is the wires that comes right from the breaker. That makes the outlet in that box the lead outlet and it needs to be replaced by a GFCI. The rest of the outlets will be replaced with regular 15A duplex receptacles. Once all the circuits and lead outlets are established, the rest is easy. Just install the outlets! ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 09, 2014, 08:24:22 PM
Well, i went to my grandpa's autobody shop today. ;D

I replaced the preheater!!! ;D :D Now there is an F32T8/IS two-lamp shoplite in there. As it turns out, there used to be an incandescent lamp in there way back when, as there was an ancient keyless ceramic socket on the ceiling with one of those socket-to-outlet adpaters. The fixture simply plugged in with one of those wire-in plugs. Since I didn't bring a plug with me I reused the old one, which meant the fixture isn't grounded. The preheater was suspended and when I installed the T8 I installed it higher up so the room appears brighter than before.

A also took pics of the lights at his shop! And I replaced all the dead tubes at his shop, three F40s and seven F96T12 slimlines.

Turns out the preheater is a Harmony House shoplight. If I'm not mistaken, Harmony House was a Sears name? If so, then I have the preheat predecessor to your RS Sears shoplite. :D It's gray on the outside and white on the inside of the reflector, like most vintage fluorescents. I had to put on a breathing mask when I got a rag to wipe off the 1/2" of dust/dirt (not even exagerating with half an inch either!). A ton of dirt that's built up since the light was installed. I don't know its age, but it has a Jefferson ballast with no label, instead the info is engraved into the ballast casing.

I took home two NOS Philips F40T12/Colortone 50 lamps too. One of the lamps in it was EOL and the other one was a GE residential light so I stuck a couple new Philips lamps in the fixture instead. So I finally got that preheater! And you know that single lamp wall fixture from 1940 that I removed? I took that too since I had left the fixture shell before.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 11, 2014, 11:10:50 PM
NICE!!!  Is the Harmony House preheater going in the garage replacing the one that burned up?
Yeah I have four of those Sears RS shoplights, (Which are the younger brother of your light).  One has a tar-leaked but working GE Bonusline ballast, one had a Universal Therm-O-Matic I installed in the 3-lamp troffer since it only lit one lamp, (So it's currently ballastless) and the other two have LPF residential ballasts that are NOT original and will someday be replaced with HPF ballasts or electronic T8 ballasts. 
One of those GE halogens quit after less than 24 hours, though it was a broken filament.  The other three still work though.
You have got to get yourself a slimline too! That will open you up to 8' lamps too. 
Take pics of the Philips C50 lamps and the restoration!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 11, 2014, 11:50:20 PM
Yeah I'll probably end up sticking it in the garage... Mine is very overbuilt, not sure about yours? I really like the design with the far-spaced lamps and all. Three sockets are the original black ones and one white replacement. Ironically the white one is cracked and needs to be replaced. I don't have one to match the black ones so it'll get one of the sockets I saved from the preheater that died, which are white, but I might paint all the sockets black to make them look nicer lol. Never painted sockets before though... I painted the reflector and socket brackets today. Will paint the endcaps and top housing tomorrow or the next day. Then I need to replace some wires and get some liquid electrical tape. I probably will get the tape after vacation. In the mean time, the fixture will get mounted in the garage sans-cord just to get it out of the way...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 14, 2014, 06:47:40 PM
Cool that it's going up! Will the Philips non-Alto F40C50 lamps be used in it there?
I cleaned up the reflectors for the two new (to me) Sears shoplights with paper towels and Windex and reassembled them and stuck them above the same unfinished walls supposed to be a closet next to the one with the GE Bonusline ballast.  6XF40 above the space where the vast majority of my lamps/fixtures/ballasts are stored! I'm going to hardmount them to the ceiling in that storage loft room though eventually. 
The MagneTek ballast isn't bad for a LPF one, but that US fluorescent is pretty dim compared to the MagneTek and HPF .80a GE Bonusline.  Lamps are an Ace (GE) SP41 and 90s Sylvania F40/CW in the Bonusline-ballasted one, an identical Ace lamp and GE 34W cool white Watt-Miser in the MagneTek-ballasted one, and another Watt-Miser and the 1986 just-post-mainlighter GE F40CW in the last one with the US fluorescent LPF ballast.  They were just the first random lamps I grabbed for the latter two fixtures :)
I used some roofing screws (the ones used on corrugated metal roofing) to hold the reflectors but need to bring the cordless screw gun home to screw them in all the way. 
I have a third Sears shoplight reflector for the last one at the friend's woodshop which also has one of those US Fluorescent ballasts which I will acquire someday.  (It's running reflectorless since when first trying 34w lamps on those LPF ballasts I thought it might run hotter so I wanted it to have better ventilation. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 14, 2014, 10:49:45 PM
No, I plan to run the lamps that were in the longjohn preheater before it died, the GE F40 4100K DoIt lamps. If the orignal starters work I'll keep them in...

You need some nice HPF ballasts for all yor fixtures. :P ;D Glad to hear you still have a good amount of light though! Any particular reason you want to hardmount them? I prefer to suspend them via chains and have them plug in since if I need to open the fixture for whatever reason, I can just unplug it, unchain it, and open it on the ground. Much easier than trying to open it while mounted. Plus with my longjohn preheater, it would have REALLY sucked if I had to open that up mounted after that mess. It was nice to be able to just remove the lamps and starters and cut the cord off from the outside and just take it to the curb lol. Though of course I opened it to get pics and to see what happened inside there. Man I can still smell the putrid odor... :(


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 15, 2014, 01:34:11 PM
Keeping the C50s NOS for now?
Yeah I do! Or at least electronic T12 or T8 high ballast factor ones.  I intend to hardmount because the latter two lack suspension hardware though the Bonusline-ballasted one will stay suspended I think though I might hardwire it to a junction box since the cord is spliced anyway...
Ideally I'd find some nice NOS HPF ballasts like GE Bonuslines, Universal therm-o-matics or Advance Kool-Koils and replace all three...though I don't want to touch that tar/PCB mess of the leaked but working Bonusline until it totally cooks, though it might be like your longjohn preheat fixture LOL...althogh that one used to run long hours (though not overnight; more like 2-4-6-even 8 at a stretch). 
I actually like that "basket wrap" fixture, sans it's tacky diffuser.  I might convert that to HPF or T8 or something when it's ballast cooks or I get sick of it...I do not have any spare rapid start ballasts to replace junky but working ones with though.
Although yeah it's nice to just pull the lamps, unplug it and take it to the dump if something PCB happens LOL...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 15, 2014, 03:44:47 PM
Yeah even though the Philips CT50 lamps are eco and dim I want to keep them NOS lol. Not all my lights have suspension hardware but Lowe's sells Cooper Metalux suspension kits with two V brackets and two 36" chains. That's how I "convert" my fixtures, though with the 2X4 troffer I just tied some 12-gauge wire to each end. Seems to work great. As long as my knots don't fail me, it will stay up. Even though I'm a Boy Scout I'm terrible with knots lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 15, 2014, 05:21:53 PM
I'm horrible with knots.  With those two 1X4 surface-mount troffer lights from my school I used old #18AWG ballast wires to mount them, just knotting it by twisting it around in a spiral over and over and over again...I can take a pic next time I'm at that house if you guys want...I might suspend the Sears lights but they were hardmounted in their previous location  anyway so they have holes, etc...


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on August 15, 2014, 06:39:05 PM
Ahh with the 12AWG wire it's stranded so it won't hold its shape if you twist it. You have to tie it.

I'm going to chain the Harmony House shoplight up tonight in the garage but there won't be a cord attached to it. I won't be wiring it up to a cord until after I get a fuse for it. I'll just mount it in the garage so I can get pics of it now that it's all repainted and everything. Ironically, I had to replace one of the sockets, which was already a replacement. The original sockets were all "Sylvania Electrical Products" sockets that were black and the replacement one was a white leviton, probably installed in the 60s before my grandpa bought the shop. Anyway, I happened to have a replacement that fits nicely.

I put liquid electrical tape (it's like black goopy paint that dries fast like white-out) on the frayed wires where they enter the ballast case but I didn't dare touch the fixture just in case the fixture still has a ground fault. I don't know if the current from a fluorescent ballast is any more dangerous than line voltage so don't really want to risk touching it. :(

Anyway, I tested it and both starters do work. One instant starts and the other takes like a minute, but it's not the starter's fault. I switched the starters and lamps and the same side started slow. I think since one starter is connected to the ballast (it's a stroboscoptic-corrected ballast, even though it doesn't say so) it's just slow to start...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 19, 2014, 11:06:35 AM
Yeah I wanna say the Advance Ad-Lite preheat ballasts do that too but I don't know for sure as I don't own any 4' preheat fixtures yet
Someday I want a 2, 3, or 4-lamp preheat shoplight...not really into halfpipers though if I found one I'd give it a good home and/or sell or trade to another collector. 

BTW I'm seeing lots of the True Value (GE) post-2012 F40T12 and F96T12 lamps popping up around here...the 60w F96s are much nicer than the old CW 60w energy saver slimlines we've been stuck with since EPACT...
Take pics of it! (And maybe a startup vid!)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 19, 2014, 07:43:05 PM
The preheater I have for Joe has a AdLite ballast and it wires up like two individual chokes with both starters independant of the ballast and the lamps both start quickly.

Yeah I'm not a huge halfpiper fan either...

I like the color and brightness from the new/current Philips Alto F96T12/CWS 75W lamps. They seem to be pretty good lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 20, 2014, 01:57:58 PM
I'm going to try an FS-4 starter for the attempted 4' preheat thing I did awhile back.  I had one 34w GE Watt-Miser in particular that works with the FS-2 I've used but other lamps just blink...the starter tries to start an already-lit lamp.  That setup (using a multitap 400w MH ballast as a step-up transformer, and ballasting the lamp with two 100w incandescents in series) is extremely inefficient so I'm going to try an F40 rapid start ballast but with starters inline with the cathode heating...which would be cool since I'd like to be able to use 34 watt lamps too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 20, 2014, 11:09:59 PM
Sounds cool. And yeah a good way to use up some 34W lamps lol.

I'm up in Canada this week (as you may have figured out lol) so Joe and I met up and exchanged lighting stuff. :D Much better than spending over 100 bucks shipping it and risking damaging the stuff. Plus we got to meet each other too which is cool. I always like to meet collectors in person. Joe is the third lighting enthusiast I've met up with (besides Marco) and I hope to meet up with more too. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 21, 2014, 10:43:27 PM
Yeah that's cool!
Well guess what Mike? THREE of those 72w GE halogen lamps have died! (all the same death too).  The other supermarket I thought might sell the Sylvania version doesn't have them but has 5000K TCP spiral CFLs I might buy instead.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 21, 2014, 11:29:14 PM
Ah see? Told you those GE halogens are crap. :P All the GEs i have in use run horizontally though and halogens don't do good running horizontal (since the filament sags into the quartz tube wall) whereas the Sylvanias run vertically. Do yours run vertically or horizontally and what fate did they suffer?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 22, 2014, 12:15:46 AM
One ran horizontal for sure and the others may have been at an angle...they were/the last one is in those clip work lights...the filament always broke midway up itself and half of it rolls around in the capsule. 
I also find the "dispose of lamp in a closed container" weird...do you? Mine all went in the trash can by themselves just like an incandescent would have.
(http://file:///Users/andylange/Desktop/2186896_orig.jpg)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 22, 2014, 08:27:29 PM
Ahh interesting. Never seen Dispose of lamp in a closed container. The Sylvania ones don't say that. Not sure what difference it makes since when they activate the compactor on the garbage truck the enclosed container will get smashed, exposing the lamp to the environment. Perhaps they meant a broken lamp? You can't touch a quartz arctube/halogen capsule with bare hands because our skin oils degrade quartz and will break it down.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 26, 2014, 12:53:38 AM
Well I've visited with a couple fellow (not on this site though) fluorescent light people in the past few days.  Both have given me many lamps and fixtures. 
One was over at my house today, the same person who gave me the Sears RS shoplights and the Sylvania Design 50s.  The one I visited gave me the Sylvania Daylight Full Spectrum and turned me onto the dozens of GE Mainlighters in the trash a few years ago.  Both did/do maintenance at my totally-T12 school too. 
Also I'm doing research on my boat...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 26, 2014, 02:44:05 PM
First day of Junior year for me today.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 27, 2014, 10:57:57 AM
Today will be my third...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 27, 2014, 06:51:16 PM
ah so you went back a day before me on Monday?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 27, 2014, 09:21:58 PM
Yep...but we have a 4 day weekend thanks to Labor Day! (We already have Fridays off in my school district but that means longer days)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 27, 2014, 09:33:23 PM
Ah I have a three-day weekend.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 28, 2014, 12:11:58 AM
I was reading yet another thing on LG about supposedly how HPF ballasts out of use for years/decades tend to go "BOOM".  I wonder if that's what happened to that long-john preheat fixture you had...sure it got used since you had it but for short periods right? Who knows how long it was not used in that basement...it had bad lamps and/or starters right?
As far as I know the longest out of use ballasts I have are that Advance slimline...lamps were dated 1996 and it was found in a vacant house, filthy, and knowing what went on at that place it could easily have had somewhere between 13-18 years of non-use! (There was a calendar in there dated January 2001 and it was covered in dirt and dust on a mouse-shredded mattress).  I was a little "Uhhh" about powering it up for the first time and it had/still has a broken plunger side socket but when I got that thing lit up finally it was the most awesome thing LOL...
In another case, I had a 400w CWA MH ballast and lamp that had not been plugged in AT LEAST 10 years.  It made a "cracking" or "Arcing" or "Sizzling" sound at first...I have a video of it somewhere.  I guess that cap had to "charge up"...that ballast takes awhile to start certain lamps, buzzing at first then "crackling" for a second when it lights...cap discharging? IDK...any ideas?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 28, 2014, 04:28:56 PM
 I've had lights (street lights) that are NOS and have never been used for like 40 years and they work fine. It is possible that very used capacitors that all of a sudden sit unused for years are a little stubborn. I think they just need to be broken in though. The capacitor with the ballast that I put in my M-250R I think is loosing its capacitance, as the lamp takes forever to warm up fully, a tell-tale sign of a weak capacitor. I will replace it when I get the cash but right now I need money for everything and have no money for anything. I need a capacitor, fuses, a cast box and lamp for my mini-high bay, and other things too. All I have is five bucks lol.

I have no idea. HID is rather unprecticable, kinda like a domesticated wild animal, like a pet chimp. It behaves most of the time but you never know what will set it off. MH more so than anything else. I won't light up MH lamps indoors for more than a few minutes. I'll piss myself worrying about the lamp exploding (not literally of course lol). I will only light MH outdoors. That way if a lamp explodes, there's no fire risk and I don't need to worry about glass shards or mercury contamination (well I sorta do but eventually that crap will seep into the ground and disapate. Fortunately we don't have well water or that could potentially be a hazard. I personally don't like well water. I think it tastes gross, though everyone that has well water says it tastes so crisp and clean. I think it taste like $h!t lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 28, 2014, 09:10:48 PM
I'm going to test that 1000w HPS grow light that came with my house someday but outside on a long extension cord so it can be plugged in from far away LOL. 
I usually am told to not drink the tap water at people's houses without municipal water but in one case where it's directed from the rain gutter into a tank it tastes fine IMO...
Speaking of that my municipality is on a boil-water notice as of this afternoon...apparently our water tested positive for E-coli bacteria...oh no! I already drank a glass of it! I hope it hasn't reached my house but I doubt it LOL.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 28, 2014, 10:41:22 PM
Eww E-Coli? :( Yuck!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 28, 2014, 11:28:31 PM
Yup! When I hear E-coli I think Taco Shmell LOL...
Been meaning I bought some 6500K 13w CFLs to replace those epic-failure GE halogen lamps...
I'm also considering mounting my Sears shoplights in my storage loft tomorrow...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 29, 2014, 01:24:26 PM
So last night I had the "brilliant" idea that a rapid start ballast could be made into a preheat one by wiring a starter inline with the cathode heating.  The test "victims" were a (90s?) "US FLuorescent" .75a LPF rapid start ballast in one of those Sears shoplights and a pair of GE F40CW/RS/WM. 
First I tried with one of the blue wires.  It didn't work; the cathodes were lit dimly...even with the starter REMOVED??? Maybe I did the wrong side.  Then I tried on the red-wire side...still no luck.
Now, anyone else familiar with the F34T12 "sparking" discharge at the ends trying to start? It's REALLY impressive on a lamp missing some phosphor (I scraped some of it off with a piece of glass laying inside the lamp).
I also admittedly used an FS-2 starter; but shouldn't that at least give endless blinkage? I'll play with it more today.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 29, 2014, 03:38:29 PM
I believe you should only connect the lamp between one red and blue and run the starter independantly like a preheater. I wouldn't recommend it. I would use proper gear but if you want to do it as a temporary thing I could probably work. You'll need FS-4 starters though.

Yeah with an FS-2 starter in an FS-4 application, the lamp should flash and strobe as if it were EOL. If you take the starter out at the right time, you can sucessfully start an FS-4 lamp with an FS-2 starter, I've done it. Of course the onyl way to do that is remove the starter after you power up the light and you'd have to put the starter back in after you turn it off. An FS-4 starter will do nothing in an FS-2 application since the FS-4 starter requires more voltage to work I think.

Thanks for indirectly reminding me that I need to test to OVC of my 1973 universal ballast...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 29, 2014, 04:26:55 PM
Yeah I've just been wanting to implement a 4' preheat setup for years now and preferably one that would work with 34 watt lamps which normal tulamp preheat fixtures will not.  (Well, they do but you get a by-product of tar and PCBs).
I thought about trying it with one of my vintage full power HPF ballasts but I don't dare since I don't want to damage vintage ballasts that aren't made anymore and are now collectors' items LOL.  (Which is why I have them). 

I have lots of electrical home wiring and other DIY home improvement reference books, and they're all dated.  That's really cool since the basic information is the same but the tools and products have changed.  I had a couple I bought at a rumage sale once, and when my mom passed away my godparents (the ones with the M-400A) grabbed a bunch of the reference books right along with the photo albums and important papers long before I got there knowing I'd want them; I was fascinated with them as a child.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 29, 2014, 05:52:37 PM
Ah I see. I'd send you a preheater for the cost of shipping but even just shipping would cost you a lot and boxing it up would be a PITA for me lol.

Ah nice of your godparents to grab all that stuff and that they had known you had wanted it. I'm dying to see pics of the M-400A. Do you remember anything about it? Was the ballast on the door or the top housing? Was there a NEMA tag on the outside? A lamp inside? a PC socket? I'm curious now. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 29, 2014, 06:21:54 PM
The ballast was inside (so not a Powr/Door I don't think).  It had a faded silver "25" tag.  No lamp or PC but sockets for both and a circuit-board-looking thing inside so presumably HPS.  We couldn't even figure out how to wire it to power LOL or what voltage it was...there were two "transformer" looking thingys and a capacitor. 
Yeah it would almost require a plywood crate LOL.
I tried between a yellow and a blue and no success...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 29, 2014, 09:28:55 PM
red and blue, not yellow. I think yellow only serves to heat the cathodes. If you run a lamp between one red and one blue with a starter connected and then run another lamp with one red and one blue it might work (with each one getting it's own starter). For prehet you should omit the yellow leads.

LOL Well of course the ballast is inside but is it mounted to the inside of the door or the top housing? If it's mounted to the top housing then it's an M-400 (split door version). Since it's got a NEMA tag it's a late 70s-early-to-mid 80s GE. The metallic tag was once gold. It's defiently HPS.

There were two "transformer" things? ??? You mean ballasts? Like two coils on the ballast? All the wireing connections you need to make would be on the black terminal block inside. First you need to figure out the voltage. There's a paper label inside titled GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC with LUMINAIRE as a subtitle but they corrode after a few years so it might not be readable. If it's 120V it should be fairly easy to wire up since the white wires will all be at one terminal block (where you connect the neutral) and then the terminal for the hot is the terminal with one and only one black wire (for the PC socket). A PC must be locked in for the light to get power though.

If you can get pics (maybe phone your godparents and ask them to take pics and email them to you?) I can help more. If it's 240V there are a couple options. Either the PC socket is wired for 240V too in which case there are two hot connections or it's 240V with a 120V PC so there are two hots and a neutral (neutral being only to control the PC socket).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 30, 2014, 12:38:56 AM
Whoops! I thought you mean like doing the single-lamp shunting trick in which case the OCV would probably be so high it would instant-start before the starter could kick in at all.  Now I see.  I'll have to try it again tomorrow. 
IIRC it was mounted inside...or was it on the door? In fact I don't remember.  I was almost 99 percent sure it was HPS too since the circuit board had to be an ignitor. 
Yeah I meant ballasts of course but I'm just so ignorant with them that's about all they looked like LOL (I know everything about fluorescents but almost nothing about HID and especially HID streetlights.  Perhaps it was a multi-wattage ballast like 150w/250w or 250w/400w? I've heard of ballasts like that before and having two coils makes sense in that case.  Or maybe then it's multitap 3-phase or something...I'd have to study it in person again or ask for pics. 
The label was totally unreadable, hence my godfather and I scratching our heads trying to figure out how to get it going one day. 
I knew that about the PC and we considered borrowing the windowless (so dayburner most likely) one off the 80s Regent SuperLite with the /DX Westy Lifeguard.  (I hope to get that light someday). 
I have a couple pics of the outside since I know you'd asked for them last time I went down there in January but I did not open it up then.  (It was a PITA to open too, laying upside down on the ground as opposed to having the door facing down which helps LOL.  IDK, any ideas what CalTrans used for their supply (i.e 3 phase 277v). 
I'm not that much of a streetlight guy (I'd want something smaller like a little 100w MV cobrahead) so maybe someday if I get it and we meet in person (At one point earlier this year it looked like I might move to CT but that's not happening now) I'd happily give it to you in trade for a F40 preheat fixture or something LOL. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 30, 2014, 11:18:25 AM
Ah yeah let me know how it works out with the preheater. Yeah I'm pretty sure you'd run each lamp between one red and one blue with the starters wires to each lamp independantly. If I understand Trent, that's whay he meant but I don't know much in the ways of electrical with ballasts and stuff.

I saw the pics. The ballast is definetly on the door. And yep, 250W HPS. So were there two separate ballasts? Or did you just mean multiple coils? There are multi-wattage ballasts out there (100/175W MV, 100/150W HPS, 250/400W HPS) but they don't require additional coils.

The number of coils depends on the ballast type and the line voltage coming into the ballast. A single tap 240V 250W HPS ballast would be a 240V choke since the voltage doesn't need to be corrected. Just like with a F20T12 choke. On the other hand, a 120V single tap 250W HPS ballast would be two coils since the voltage needs to be stepped up. This is a primary and secondary coil ballast just like an F40 ballast, because on 120V, the voltage needs to be raised. Just like how on 240V, F40s can use chokes. Making some sense now? The only difference is that the ballast is bigger and not potted inside a case.

Was there a capacitor? (Silver case with two wires coming out of it?) If there's no capacitor than that means it's not a CWA. If you can get pics of the inside I can probably help a little more...

Yeah totally! I can trade you a fluorescent for the M-400A. I'm more of a small cobrahead person too but I love the 70s and 80s HPS stuff. Well, if it's 120V that is...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 30, 2014, 11:49:01 AM
Yeah I'll try that when I get a chance and post the results.  I did make a little 10sec-ish video of what it did between blue/yellow. 
Multiple coils.  So it's entirely possible it's 120v period or multitap with a 120v option?
I'm almost certain there was a capacitor (Which might have PCBs and tend to go BANG when powered up for the first time in decades). 
Another way to make 208/240/277v stuff work on 120v is to take a multitap ballast, wire it to 120v like normal, and you'll get that higher voltage off it's tap.  I did this with a 277v Advance T8 ballast once using a 400w MH ballast that was multitap.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 30, 2014, 12:30:24 PM
Well it depends on how many coild it has, but yeah if it's got more than one coil it's most likely either a 120V ballast or at least a multi-tap ballast but there is a chance that it's just the type of ballast. The best person to ask if its a Caltrans light is Dave D. (SilverlinerOV-14B) since he lives in California.

As for the capacitor, I wouldn't worry about it. However, if the capacitor isn't rusty, you'll be able to read an engraving on the capacitor. GE always marked the capacitor ratings and the date too. the date is marked either YY-WW or WW-YY (week and year) so something like 42-78 or 78-42 would mean 42nd week of 1978. If you want to play it safe you can always pop in a new capacitor but in all honesty I don't see that being necessary. If you do replace it I'd keep the old one since it's the original cap.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 30, 2014, 02:27:00 PM
I posted this on Lighting Gallery too so there's a very good chance Dave Silverliner will see this and be able to help us too.  (He's dated many of my fluorescent lamps too!) BTW there was a chance at one point he may have gotten a chance to go to the same ReStore location I've been to. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 30, 2014, 06:25:08 PM
BTW, that's the M-400A not the M-400A1. NiMo likes to add numbers where they don't belong. :8) lol

And the light defiently has a PC socket? As far as I know, Caltrans lights were all relay-controlled so they wouldn't have PC sockets. So if it has a PC socket it's probably not a Caltrans light, as Caltrans is the DOT.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 30, 2014, 09:38:42 PM
So that narrows it down to being used at a local intersection and not on a freeway entrance ramp or something.
Okay so I did the blue/red wire thing and I got it so (sorta) work! Only one lamp can light at a time though.  They'll both blink but one will "win" finally after much pinging but not a whole lot of blink-happieness.  If that lamp is loosened/removed then the other lights.  It only seems to work with 34 watt lamps with the FS-2 starters (FYI it seems if you have a NPF preheat single lamp ballast and are short on FS-4 starters and are using a 34 watt lamp an FS-2 will work I guess).  40 watt lamps just make the starter "ping" continuously though.  I plan to get some FS-4 starters and stick another LPF ballast in for the other lamp and get something HPF or electronic for whatever other residential shoplight that comes out of (I have several).  If I find some nice HPF RS ballasts then this will be even better! I must admit, this is sorta exciting! I would try this on my HPF full power ballasts but refuse to risk it in case something bad DOES indeed happen.  I need to run this homebrew setup for a longer period to see how the ballast does with one lamp, hence half the arc voltage.  It's rated for 34 watt lamps and likes them better than 40w lamps (It's that US Fluorescent ballast in one of the Sears shoplights which I thought would be a perfect preheat conversion) so it SHOULD do fine but we'll see. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 30, 2014, 11:25:54 PM
ah glad to hear it worked out well. :D Ah sounds like how my exit sign retrofit kit works. That would be good if you only need one lamp lit. so when one lamp goes EOL the other will light up.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2014, 12:24:08 AM
Would that actually work? I would think they would just be blinking like crazy then the starter would stick on one lamp...but maybe I'm wrong.  I'm going to make it 2-lamp though with FS-4 starters.
Right now it's plugged in behind me leaning up against the wall; I'm doing a heat test with an essentially-shunted ballast AND  a 34 watt lamp.  I took a little startup vid, though it's not that impressive. 
The lamp seems nice and bright, and the ballast seems happy so far.  When I get FS-4 starters and can theoretically run 40w lamps in this thing the ballast(s) should be even happier. 
You'll also see pics of the 34w GE Watt-Miser that has a loose piece of glass inside...I was working on making a clear fluorescent at one point but it's kinda partial...ignition on both preheat and rapid start, as well as dim-glowing on the primary side of a rapid start ballast, can be somewhat interesting to watch. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 31, 2014, 12:14:41 PM
well aren't you using one starter for each lamp, so each lamp has its own starter. With my my exit sign kit, it's one ballast wired for two PL lamps. The PL lamps have internal starters as you know. So they will flicker and "argue" back and forth for a while and then one "wins" and starts after a few seconds and then the other one just sits idle. When one lamp goes EOL there will be a lot more flicker but eventually one wins out. The idea was that with the exit sign, you're doubling the life of the lamp by using two lamps, since one takes over after the first fails.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2014, 03:11:46 PM
Yeah the redundancy must be nice in a situation like that.  I've also heard there's apparently a way to wire a single lamp rapid start ballast so when one lamp fails, is removed, is broken, etc. the other takes over, although the cathodes on the standby lamp might remain heated...that makes me wonder if it would blacken quickly and last about the same amount of time though?
Well it gets pretty dang hot after about 90 minutes, so we'll see.  When I can get FS-4 starters so 40w lamps will work it should run cooler...and I plan to convert the other Sears shoplight (With the MagneTek ballast) to electronic or HPF and use the MagneTek for the other lamp in this so it's a 2-lamper again.  I'm thinking of putting my PowerTwist lamps in there once it's all finished!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2014, 03:51:46 PM
Well it's really funny I should mention those PowerTwist lamps at all since the one I had in service up until a few minutes ago randomly lost vacuum!  :8) I went in that room and not only was the center lamp in that suspended 3-lamp troffer not lit, but it had phosphor blown off! I'm thinking it was a freak thing though since the filament is totally intact; we've all see the aftermath of EOL tortures and the whole cathode assembly is usually a burned, melted-down mess!
It's now running a Sylvania "Daylight Full Spectrum" (Design 50) lamp and we'll see...it's that Universal Therm-O-Matic I have shunted for one lamp since it's half-dead.  Thinking the ballast went with a bang somehow (I didn't witness it) I tried it with an Ace F40/UNIVERSAL DELUXE (F40SP41) just to be sure...lt lit fine so we'll see what happens now.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 31, 2014, 07:16:43 PM
Hmm yeah I've seen one of my grandpa's F40s have a couple inches of phosphors blown clean off with the filament i think intact (it was the end with the guard on a 1996 Philips-made 34w no-name CW). I think the seal just failed. With EOLs, the vacuum is lost because the heat of the electrode melts/cracks the glass. With this, you probably were a little rough handling the lamps and made a small crack you didn't notice, or a crack just appeared over time.

About that closet light I relamps, I think it was actually because of the humidity that it wouldn't start but I got a nice full mercury full wattage lamp out of the whole thing so... lol The old lamps still works fine but it's pretty black on one end.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2014, 10:15:49 PM
Back then both ends would've had guards FYI...
I put the reflector back on the Sears preheat conversion project and we'll see how the ballast does under a reflector with a 34 watt lamp...I got a 40w to start like I mentioned before by twisting it at just the right moment to disengage the starter and the ballast ran substantially cooler, so we'll see.
There's already a YT vid of the startup but I need to do another one with the reflector on. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on August 31, 2014, 10:37:50 PM
ah interesting. still pretty black with the guard! interested to hear how the preheat thing works out! :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on August 31, 2014, 11:07:27 PM
It's installed now.  It's not extremely bright, that's for sure, but having both lamps going and using 40w lamps might help fix that.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 01, 2014, 11:15:46 AM
Hmm interesting. I wonder if there are any unforeseen negative things that come along with doing this?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 01, 2014, 12:17:16 PM
That's what I'm trying to find out.  Where this is currently hung (my living room) the color of the CW ES lamp(s) is ugly so I might have to buy some SPX35 lamps or something to match the kitchen.  Or 6500K... ;D something besides halophosphate CW
If I find some extra HPF ballasts and have any left over after redoing other fixtures I might make this thing brighter by using them...in the meantime if I find another LPF residential ballast it will go in there for the other lamp or at the same time I buy starters I'll buy something else for the other Sears light and take the MangeTek ballast out of it and use it for the other lamp, provided it won't overheat.
It's also VERY blink-happy when fired up for the first time in hours.  Not that I care that much about
blink-happiesness on preheat or startup flicker on rapid start; I just really wanted a 4ft preheat fixture and also one that could run 34 watt lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 01, 2014, 10:32:01 PM
Ah yeah I have CW ES lamps in the Cooper Turret in the garage but those lamps wouldn't be suitable in "living space" lol. My parents wouldn't let be install a fluorescent fixture in "living space" anyways. I have a F14T12 preheat strip over my bed and that's it (besides the closet lights)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 02, 2014, 10:54:33 AM
That's the one thing I really dislike about CW ES lamps...they have this nasty greenish-yellowish hue to them IMO.  It's okay by itself but looks ugly next to /735 lamps in the next room over. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 02, 2014, 04:25:08 PM
I like the greenish light in my garage though, sort of gives that industrial look, especially from a turret. Do /WW ES lamps have a different color than full wattage ones like how it is with CW? Like more pinkish or something?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 02, 2014, 10:21:58 PM
I've only seen one place that used WW ES lamps (along with CW ones), they were every generation of post-EPACT to Ecolux WW and CW GE Watt-Miser.  They seemed like...warm white! There was not a single 40 watt lamp in the whole school so I had nothing to compare them to.
It was a 50/50 mix practically (totally random) in those troffers with the 3/4" parabolic cell diffusers...they were horribly dim IMO! In one classroom I walked by you could tell the teacher had removed all the doors; they were sitting in the corner.
I moved my generator to a new location today.  I had to build a little structure (4 posts and a very fudged roof) for it.  It's nice and far away from the house and it's quieter but not as quiet as I'd hoped.  It's on the opposite side of the house so where I previously had noise now I don't but I do elsewhere.  My one next-door neighbor won't hear it anymore though!
I ran a piece of #12 NM direct burial over the ground for tonight but I need to bury it and straighten it out later.   


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 03, 2014, 04:27:03 PM
I thought you had a bunch of /WW 34W lamps too? Yeah 34W lamp-lit areas are pretty dim. The more lamps there are, the dimmer it is, if that makes any sense lol. (since you loose a certain number of lumens per lamp so more lamps makes the amount of "lost" lumens compared to 40W lamps greater). Hmm I don't see what right the teacher has to remove the covers off the lights. They're not his lights... That's like me taking the ceiling fan down from my bedroom without asking my parents lol.

12-guage? You think that's enough to feed your whole house? O_O I'd personally go with 10 at the smallest. How many amps can that generator produce?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 04, 2014, 12:07:06 AM
Nah I have a bunch of Warm white GE Mainlighter lamps and some cool white GE Watt-Misers.  Yeah I know exactly what you mean...although I've seen places where ES lamps were fine and I might have even relamped with them intentionally.
Yeah but it's sorta THEIR classroom they have to be in all day so I think they had a right to.  Personally I would've stuck 40w 5000K lamps in there AND removed the diffusers if I was that teacher but that's just me...I'd have the old lamps and diffusers sitting in the corner the whole time though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 04, 2014, 12:09:42 AM
Oops I meant #10AWG...I think that's the minimum, maybe even a little generous, because a 2000w generator will realistically only give 15 amps but I intend to put a 3000 watt model in there so #10 will be PERFECT...plus it's 250 feet of run before it gets to the house anyway.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 04, 2014, 01:15:43 AM
Hey Mike, guess what? Next Friday I will be using the very table saw that was having the starting issues at the Sears shoplight house.  That former teacher is going to teach me woodworking and I'm pretty excited! Sure, I can cut a 2X4 with a skillsaw but I'm pretty terrible.  I've tangled with most power tools at least once, sometimes by myself without anyone else to show me, but I'd like to get better at it. 
I also noticed that 4-lamp 6' slimline pic of Darren's now has 79 comments! LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 04, 2014, 02:54:26 PM
Ah I see. My house has 200A service with an overhead feed. Of course we don't come close to maxing it out though lol. I have 240V service (120/N/120) but I don't know if the main breaker is rated in 240V amps or 120V amps.

Ahh I'm Ok with power tools. I'm in construction shop at school so I learn more about them.

Wow it almost has more comments than Devonte's shoebox thread! Jace had said no more comments were allowed on that pic since they were all off-topic posts and it was "spamming up" the gallery.  here's the pic.  (http://www.galleryoflights.org/mb/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-3841) After the first few comments, they're not even related to the shoebox lol. The irony to it is that it's such a bland, plain picture and yet somehow it got all spammed up lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 05, 2014, 02:21:51 AM
Without even clicking the link, I know I've seen that one before! And yeah it had a lot...in our case about pot growing operations and Romex LOL. 
Yeah I max out my 15A all the time and have maxed out my 20A (one 20A breaker on each hot leg so very underbreakered) on my 10Kw before too.  I guess it's a good thing it's only 20A though since it feeds a bunch of outlets on #12 wire which can only safely handle 20A.  (The outlets are there because it makes it easier switching back and forth with portable generators).  And also the wire going into my main breaker panel is only #12 Romex.  That's all 20A breakers too, including the main one, except for one 30A branch breaker...how wrong LOL.  But I don't use that much power, despite my hobby!
I helped someone repair the roof on a house they own next to mine so they can leave for a year and have it survive the winter.  We admittedly went over rot but it's going to be replaced in it's entirety next June. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 05, 2014, 04:42:15 PM
I finally wired that Lithonia "basket wrap" to power today and it works.  (I mounted it on the garage ceiling in July and attached Romex but never got it wired in at the other end until now.  That little residential-grade Advance ballast is surprisingly bright with 34 watt lamps too.  I think it's brighter than the Ace F40/CE/EEs (GE Watt-Misers in disguise) on a little Radionic LPF ballast  in a nearby Lithonia wraparound of the previous generation.  I like the design of the latter a lot actually.  I had to change it's ballast before and it was nice and easy since the endplates come off (held on with screws) and the sockets slide right off.
Both are running without diffusers and we'll see what they're like come winter subfreezing temps...they sure beat those 8ft 60w slimlines in the same room!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 05, 2014, 05:38:01 PM
Oh wow. I guess off-grid you can get away with that but if your area were to ever be put on the grid that wouldn't fly lol.

Oh you didn't wire it up til now. I thought you had powered it when you attached the Romex. I haven't gotten to fusing my Harmony House preheater yet so it's just installed for "display" purposes (basically to get it out of the way lol) I will fuse it soon...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 05, 2014, 09:53:40 PM
I suppose so.  Although I would think it would be grandfathered in most likely but any additions/rewiring would have to be done up to spec.  I'd gladly hook on to the grid if it ever came through though! There's been feasability studies done here before and the quickest/easiest option would be a huge diesel generator for a town of less than 100 people and the initial cost of all the wiring and equipment would be pretty high, operating costs would be too, and also some people might not even hook on...I know I would unless I had something substantially less expensive or totally solar/wind or something. (Although the latter is what I'd like to do).
I'd probably get a 100 amp service if that ever did happen but just plug the house in for now LOL although one of the first things would be hooking up the element in my hot water tank instead of heating it with a little diesel stove.  That would use the most power...like I said, I DON'T USE THAT MUCH POWER! I'd also hook it up like that so if there was ever a power outage my inverter would simply kick in instead and if it lasted more than, say, 12 hours, I would have to start my generator after that to charge my batteries.  (I run my generator as it is for about 2 hours in the morning and 2 in the evening and run off a 12v battery bank and inverter the rest of the time). 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 06, 2014, 02:52:24 PM
Hmm I don't know how much power we use but our bill can be as high as 250 bucks in the summer with the central AC running. In the winter the bill is generally lower since we have natural gas heat. Natural gas hot water too. We have an electric stove though. We do laundry every day so the washer and dryer probably use a lot of power and we have a dish washer than runs probably every other day or every 3 days. I would assume the stove, dish washer, and dryer use the most power since they are 240V (well i think the dishwsher is, not sure, 50-50 chance it's 120V or 240V).

Here everyone is on the grid except places that are solar powered. I would think using a generator would be pretty pollutful (if that's even a word lol) and you must have to use electricity very sparingly. I have a nice big transformer to feed me from the pole in front of my house lol I think it feeds maybe 8-10 houses or so.

Well if you were to go on-grid the electric company whoever that may be, would be responsible up to the meter. An electrician certified by the utility would connect the main breaker to the metered service feed and once your house is wired up the utility will put in a meter and you'll have power. If you have some serious code issues they will probably make you fix it. Wiring that is way off code should not be grandfathered IMO but I don't know. If it was done to code at the time the house was built that's one thing but if there are later "Mr. Fix-It" hack jobs all over the place i'd make people have them fixed if i was the utility company. But I don't see you guys ever being on-grid. You guys are better off staying off-grid if you can and invest in wind and solar energy. Nice and green. Of course you'd need a ton of solar panels to power what an average house consumes but since you seem to already use energy sparingly you probably wouldn't have to change your ways much. I guess for a start, you could hook the lighting in your house up to a small solar or wind system and just have your appliances run off of the generator. Solar pwoer would probably definitely require LEDs or CFLs though lol. You can't use a lot of energy unless you cover your entire roof with panels and then have some elsewhere lol. They're developing solar panels that are more "concentrated" though. In other words, one panel will be able to create more energy than an older panel. My grandparents have a couple solar panels on their roof and they're really really old. They've never worked/been hooked up since they've lived there which has been since around 1970.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 06, 2014, 04:02:06 PM
This is turning into a REALLY interesting discussion! I use LESS than a gallon of gasoline a day (maybe 1/2 gallon tops usually) running my generator, maybe a gallon max on high usuage days like washing every textile item in the house or something).  Yeah my late mother NEVER ran the A/C for exactly that reason.  Got to the point she wouldn't run the (gas) furnace either.  This got bad once she was on oxygen...don't want to use the wood-fired fireplace with that going on heaven forbid there should be a leak and you get an oxygen-enriched atmosphere in the house: BOOM!
I have a wood-burning stove and I'd say it's fairly efficient.  Turned way up (airflow wise) it goes through a load of wood quickly but it will easily last the night...though if I get up in the middle of the night I jam more in anyway.  I'm not sure how much I use each winter but I can tell you it's probably 10-15 cords-ish.  I don't even run it from like April-October though since I have a diesel stove heating my hot water which contributes heat to the house as well.  And I'm of the "Just throw on a sweater" mentality! I see others running their woodstoves in June and think "WTF?" Here it's probably 59-60 degrees farenheit in here, maybe 50 outside, so not bad.  When I do have the woodstove going I keep it at 70-75 minimum LOL. 
For me the power hogs are the washer/dryer (not so much even the dryer since it's propane), microwave, toaster oven (those two REALLY rev up a 2Kw generator), and power tools.  (Chopsaw, skillsaw, shop-vac, etc.  But those aren't used as often.
I know people that have solar but I don't think anyone never has to run a generator, though people can easily go multiple days without running one.  It sure helps though! I had/have a nPower 400w 12v wind turbine but it's since died (siezed up).  Not huge but it made a difference...although there were never days I did not have to run my generator since another power hog is a chest freezer, my inverter will run it but it kills batteries quickly.  Doesn't draw that much but it's a prolonged load...I run things like a chopsaw, toaster, etc. on my batteries/inverter and although they draw in excess of 1500w each on a 2000w inverter they're only on for very short periods. 
I have a propane stove.
As far as at the time the place was built, my house has been built at (I counted) TEN, yes TEN different times! (I know, crazy, right?) I have black, white, and yellow romex ranging from 70s-now.  I'd probably wire the water heater straight to the grid but plug my inverter/charger into the house so it would kick in in the event of a power outage.  Some of it's going to be redone in the next year or so though so there SHOULD be a #4 wire going into my panel! So it will likely be closer to code than it is now. 
At the rate I run my generator it's probably about the same as some people's commutes sittng in traffic for 1.5-2hrs each way with the car idling the whole time LOL.  (If I start driving I'll turn the car off when stopped in a road construction zone, etc; my mother would always do that).  I use power pretty sparingly when not running my generator to make my batteries last longer though...one light on in the whole house, ONLY in the room I'm in, etc. 
Oh, I'm very much a CFL user for that very reason! (Gag all you want LOL).  If I redid ALL the wiring I'd make as many things 12vDC as possible: lights, radio, etc.  and only turn on an inverter when needed.  So close to your idea there.  I have a 2000 watt inverter and in theory with a nice big battery bank and lots of solar panels and maybe some wind turbines  so in theory I could use up to 2000w of 120v in ideal conditions...after that I'd have to start my 10Kw generator.  I intend to wire up my water heater element to that generator someday so if it's going it's giving hot water too.  I've even contemplated putting it's radiator in the house somewhere. 
I wonder if your grandparents' panels still work though?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 06, 2014, 06:22:54 PM
Oh man I need the A/C. Today it reached 91 degrees with 77% humidity. That's a real oddball though. The average high for this sime of year is 78 degrees. This summer has actually been rather comfortable. Usually it's in the low 90s for most of July but it was in the upper 70s to mid 80s. March to early June and mid-September to mid-November are usually when we have our "perfect" days when it's not too hot, not too cold (50s-60s range). Those months can be really bi-polar though since we have random hot days and random cold days but by mid-June the heat is on. The heat isn't really noticable until June usually. July is pretty hot and August is the hot and muggy month. the first half of September is hot and muggy too. It's actually hotter here in early September than it is in early-to-mid June. When we go back to school, it's warmer and muggier than it is when we get out.

Interesting. with our thermostat (one dial for heat and A/C, with a 3-position switch on the side: HEAT - OFF - A/C) in the summer when we run the A/C we keep it at 74 in the daytime and turn it down to 71 at night when we go to bed. In the winter when we run the heat I think we keep it at 70 during the day and 67 at night. We keep it cooler at night all year round since it's easier to sleep when it's cooler.

Our electric bill in August was $250. The rates here for July 1st 2014 to December 31st 2014 is $0.07879 (7.9 cents) per kWh so that means we used about 3173 kWh during the month of August this year. That seems to be an unusually high kWh number though so if you want to double-check that math for me feel free to... I think our bills are probably around 100 bucks to 120 bucks a month in the winter so the AC is a big energy pig. My mom vacuums a lot too and we use a microwave everyday (1000W unit) so there's a chunk of change there. And we have a fridge (obviously lol). We use our lights a lot. We have CFLs in the kitchen and dining room lights which are used the most. Our living room table lamp has a 50-200-250W incandescent 3-way lamp, typically left in the 200W mode from sunset until about 11PM.

I guess maybe we are energy pigs lol. As long as we pay our bill every month I don't see the issue with that though. NGrid created electricity using natural gas, which has little effect on the earth CO2-wise when compared to burning coal. RI was thinkng about an off-shore "wind farm" (wind turbines) to generate electricity but costs ended that discussion for now.

BTW, I fused and corded my Harmony House light. Damn that thing is bright!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 06, 2014, 06:45:40 PM
It would get pretty darn hot at my mother's house in the summer without the A/C but it wasn't too bad either.  We just ran the ceiling fans all the time and closed the windows/doors and their drapes/shades/curtains during the day and opened them at night when it was cooler.  It was always cooler at that house than downtown because we were under the shade of the oak trees.  I miss that place...
The opposite would have been true in winter although I wasn't there for the last 5 winters.  It was very concerning to us family members and friends that she was living in a house with no heat towards the end.  I'm sure that didn't help the COPD at all.  The house was insulated well though, it held temperature.  When I went there cleaning out the house after she passed away it would be like 60 outside and 40 inside...I would open all the doors and windows while there, also because many things were being moved in and out.  It was enough that all the fluorescent lights in the house flickered though.
Even now with things getting cooler here and lots of rain (I started cleaning 6-month-old ashes out of my woodstove for 2 hours and I'm still not done but had to take a break) I'm still sleeping with the window open and sometimes a fan going! The bugs have been HORRIBLE here this year though! I was helping reroof part of a neighbor's house and they were BAD! And 3 stories up they're like "Yeah the bugs aren't any better up here". 
Nice! Post pics! What does that one have for a ballast again? It's not a longjohn is it? Still using those DOIt (GE) lamps out of the one that set itself on fire?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 06, 2014, 08:04:30 PM
I can't stand the heat ick. The cold doesn't bother me but if it's too cool and I never have a chance to warm up them I just have this weird feeling. My body just seems different. Like my bones are chilled I guess... I like the cool but I just take a nice hot shower to make up for it.

Yeah I can imagine the cold not helping her any. Hopefully she at least bundled up. i don't want to have to bundle up in my own home though. I want it to be warm enough so that I can wear a t-shirt and jeans (i don't wear long-sleeve shirts at all during the year except for dressy button-down shirts). She's lucky that no pipes froze if she didn't use the heat at all. Did she leave the faucets dripping a little to prevent them from freezing?

The ballast is a Jefferson tu-lamp brick style ballast. It's the length of an RS ballast but the width of probably an HO ballast. Yep, using the DOit lamps from the other fixture (for the record it didn't catch fire :P but it probably came close :o ). The burnt up fixture seem to put more end blackening on the lamps, which the people of the LG said is a tell-tale sign the cap failed, overdriving the lamps and overheating the ballast coils (overheating is an understatement!). the lamps still work though! I'm using the original starters from the Harmony House fixture since they still work. I'll post pics soon. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 06, 2014, 11:22:32 PM
I hate both extremes but can't decide which is worse. 
I don't know but it got bad at the end.  It doesn't really ever get below freezing long enough to freeze plumbing but I imagine she did.  My Dad and I wondered about pipes freezing after she passed and it was unoccupied but the utilities still turned in but my godparents (M-400A) would have gone over and drained the pipes had that happened.
How blackended are they now? Were they blackened at all before?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 07, 2014, 10:16:47 AM
They're not super black on the ends but they look like they have a few hundred hours extra blackening on the ends. It's very noticable when the lamps are on and it's dark eneough to be visible when the lamps are off too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 07, 2014, 10:51:51 AM
The GE Watt-Misers in the basket wrap look like that...they were actually in the first Sears shoplight when I got it, so a full power GE Bonusline rapid start ballast.  I don't think they have a whole lot left...they're black all the way around and starting to get that "teardrop" thing which is usually close to the end on GE lamps.  I might even resort to actually buying 34 watt lamps since I have so many fixtures were they work BETTER than 40 watt lamps!
They look like a very early version of the post-EPACT Watt-Miser: (E) but lack FOR COMMERCIAL USE ONLY.  Also still has the F40CW/RS/WM ordering code but that didn't go away for awhile...so I think it might even have the older GE electrodes!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 08, 2014, 11:41:37 PM
I'm currently painting my bedroom with paint I found under my house from 2002 at the newest since the house was empty from 2002-2010 when we moved in.  It's a medium-dark blue which is perfect for a bedroom and I found enough other stuff to do other rooms too. 
It occurred to me what I thought was silver paint might also be SilverSeal roof sealer too...not sure I want to paint fixtures like that LOL...I saw some being done at someone's house today and it smelled nasty like mine and looked the same LOL...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 09, 2014, 10:23:25 AM
Oh cool! I've wanted to paint my room a medium-dark blue too but I don't think I ever will lol. Yeah if it's roof sealer I'd think you wouldn't want to use it as paint lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 09, 2014, 10:47:45 AM
Yeah it's going to take 2 coats minimum for sure.  If I had some white I'd lighten it up a bit though but that's perfect for a bedroom...I'm not going to use it in any room except that for just that reason.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 09, 2014, 02:55:21 PM
Do you have any fluorescent lights in you bed room? Is it finished or is it unfinished like a loft or something? I'd love to add a fluorescent light in my room that I could use BLB lamps in and get some BLB posters for my room. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 09, 2014, 09:19:36 PM
Only a 22w circline adapter.  It was T-11 on one wall and plywood on the opposite wall when I moved in (closed in the space between garage and shop I guess from what people have told me that remember it a long time ago) and insulation on the exterior wall and ceiling.  It got Sheetrock and tape/mud/primer in January of 2013 and I'm just now painting it and plan to do some basic trim.  Then my house will have one completely finished room! ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 09, 2014, 10:22:40 PM
Oh wow you room must be quite dim? i guess you're used to it though. i have a FC33 LOA circline adapter and it's very dim. Probbly equal to a 40 or 60W incandescent, though I'm sure the LOA electronic adapter isn't really pushing the lamp that hard lol. Did you and your dad install the drywall on the walls and ceiling? I know you're off-grid so you need to use electricity sparingly but let's say i was in your shoes and you were on grid, I would have installed a fair amount of duplex outlets and then installed a bunch of round JBs on the ceiling and used blank round covers on them. I'd wire them all to two switches. I'd have a ceiling can in the center of the room on a third switch. The "blank" boxes would be in case I ever wanted to add light fixtures in my room.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 13, 2014, 12:53:08 PM
Yeah us and someone else installed the Sheetrock.
I didn't add any wiring but I actually got rid of some, namely where someone had wired from an outlet box to a random plastic blue JB with a dimmer switch to control a couple attic fans...it was on the surface of the wall and I got rid of it and replaced that receptacle anyway.  I know there's at least one dead wire in the wall that goes nowhere on both ends though.
I'm getting quite a few F20T12 preheat and trigger start fixtures, so I might add something in there actually.  Not sure what though. 
Originally when I moved in there was one 60 watt incandescent lighting the room.  I stuck a CFL in there and then for awhile put a Lithonia 1XF20T12 with a Universal TS ballast and Philips F20T12/WW from August 1997 up there, on a cord plugged into the light fixture with a socket-to-outlet adapter.  But I took that down when it became time to install Sheetrock. (I had it screwed to one of the roof joists).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 13, 2014, 08:32:06 PM
Ah I see. If I could, I'd install a single lamp F40T12 fixture in my room on the ceiling, probably near where the double-window is  (Kinda looks like this).  (http://st.houzz.com/simgs/a98123e600aaabee_4-2418/windows.jpg) I'd install a BLB lamp in it and then put up some BLB posters. My parents wouldn't let me mount a light in my room though. The garage was allowed only because my dad wanted extra light but the bedroom wouldn't fly. My mom wouldn't want an ugly fluorescent light upstairs and my dad doesn't want any holes in his precious drywall so unless I can hold the thing up with scotch tape I'm out of luck lol. My exit sign is held up by velcro. Not sure how to removed the velcro adhesive from the wall without ripping the paint off though lol. i'll probably just leave the velcro there and maybe hang a picture over it when i move out lol. It's two ~6" strips of black velcro on the white wall lol.

My basement lights are getting dim to the point where they're dimmer than the 60W incandescents I replaced. (the 75W= halogens have dimmed). One I did replace with a 60W incandescent because it was so dim. it still worked so i stuck it in a table lamp that we never use. It's still about the brightness of a 40W lamp, maybe a little less. i wonder if it's still using 53W. If so, sounds a lot like an HID lamp source I know of lol. There were three halogens total. Two on one switch, which are used a lot, and then one on its own switch, which isn't used quite as much. The one on its own probably dimmed out somewhat but isn't that dim. With the ones on the same switch, one dimmed so much I had to replace it since it was so inefective. I stuck in a 60W lamp. The other one is probably about the same brightness as the 60W incandescent.

The fixtures are rated 60W MAX but I wonder if I could get away with using 75W lamps? Even with 60W lamps the fixtures must run hot since the paint is discolored around the lamps. Personally I'd like to get new fixtures, two lamp fixture but I'd have to buy them and that's not happening. Maybe if I let the lamps dim out enough it'll convince my parents to get two lamp fixtures. Kinda rediculous how they're only one lamp anyways since I'd personally use a 100W lamp (or two 60W lamps) in them but they're only rated for one 60W lamp and 60W seems to be pushing the envelope as it is. 23W CFLs are too big. Actually, even 13W CFLs are too big except for the cram ones. And LEDs are too directional since the lamps are horizontal. The incandescent/halogens are directional as it is (light obviously can't go in the direction of the base). I just dislike those "boob lights" as it is, though I don't mind the 2 lamp ones.

 These octagonal globe lamp lights are nice.  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/511x%2BJn4c1L._SX342_.jpg) Though not sure if they'd look good in our basement. I see them at the ReStore from time to time. I don't buy incandescent fixtures though. I do take vintage looking bulbs out of fixtures though and buy them for 25 cents each. They just assume i grabbed them from the lamp bin in the basement. I had bought a nice 40W 130V ITT incandescent inside frost but it was dead so I tossed it. i bet 130V 40W incandescent is really dim! The current "boob lights" downstairs are white so if I were to get some of those octagonal globe lights I'd have to get white ones or paint them white. My parent's wouldn't let me replace the fixtures unless it's their idea though. So if the halogens dim enough, they'll wonder why it's so dim and tell me to install a higher wattage lamp and I'll just say they're 60W and that's as high as I can go. Then maybe they'll consider brighter fixtures. The fixtures are especially dim in comparison to all the fluorescents down there too. The garage, utility room, and laundry room are all fluorescents. I was told there's now ay fluorescents are replacing the "boob lights" so if there's more light, it'll be more incandescent light.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 13, 2014, 08:53:49 PM
Mike! Your little description had me laughing so hard I was squirting Schweppes Ginger Ale out of my nose! Funny you call them "boob lights" though since you're not the first to describe them as such...my Dad coined that term with the ones in our house and even joked we should paint the little nuts that hold the glass "globe" on pink...
I don't particularly care for them either; I thought about converting ours to 22w circline but it would probably be really dim.  They had 75w incandescents when we moved into the house but I later put 13w 825 lumen compact fluorescents in...they fit and aren't the cram ones but I'm not sure a 23w would.  Some other fixtures in my house are of a similar design but have the mushroom-shaped glass globe, know the ones? In THOSE the "cram" CFLs only fit though, I have 5000K ones in those and it looks like the moon IMO...
I want one of those tiffany stained glass lights to go over the table to replace one of the "boob lights", (Insert imitating voice there and fingers sketching quotation marks) and I'd probably stick a PL13 lamp or magnetic 22w circline adapter in there if it was me.  Ideally it would be on a dimmer switch but I run my house on MSW inverter power about 20 hours out of the day and MSW fries dimmer switches, so that's not really an option LOL.
BTW ever notice that super high pitched buzz incandescents make on dimmers dimmed way down? They do that on MSW too. 
I like those octagonal lights you described, though!
If it was my house I'd have 2XF96T12 fixtures down there but I can see how with most people that won't fly LOL, we're weird...
Although I'm getting a bunch of preheat and trigger start F15T12 and F20T12 fixtures out of a house that was mostly fluorescent!  I'm going to try and see if a LPF 2XF20T12 trigger start ballast will light one F40T12 or F34T12 if I shunt it for one lamp (reds/blues/no yellows).  I'm thinking it might work for my preheat fixture for the other lamp since usually a 2XF40 ballast has so much OCV when shunted the lamp simply instant-starts. SO, I'm thinking it might work.  I might get a chance to buy some FS-4 starters soon so I can hopefully run 40 watt lamps.  It will be dim and crappy, especially on MSW, but it's 4ft, preheat, and runs BOTH 34 and 40 watt lamps! Eventually I'll find a bunch of HPF ballasts (I hope) and make it brighter, and/or a nice F40 preheat ballast! There's some Valmont (later cousins to the GE Bonusline) 2XF40 standard F-can Class P ones on Ebay but I doubt they're going anywhere anytime soon since someone on LG mentioned they bought the "1 sold" over a year ago and plus I simply cannot afford it. 
I'm thinking my Vita-Lite Power Twist lamp will go in there for sure along with maybe a "big meatball" GE Chroma 50 at the friend's woodshop.
Some of the F20 lamps I might get include GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC F20T12/CW, "big meatball" versions of same, Philips pre-Alto F20T12/WW and then the Alto version. That will be my first low-mercury T12 lamp! I I actually LIKE the green endcaps and reduced mercury concept (as long as the lamp won't go starved).  I think it's better if the lamp gets broken and/or improperly disposed of, i.e in the trash can. 
And there are lots of EOL/rectifying ones I will finish off on my 277v Advance lamp-killer ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 13, 2014, 10:35:20 PM
LOL my 7th grade english teacher & her family apparently also call them boob lights too and funny thing is that my 7th grade enlish teacher was a female lol. Yeah a circline conversion would be really cool but like you said, way too dim considering the 60W incandescents aren't even enough. Ours are really small. Less than a foot in diameter. I've seen bigger ones. I'm just not a fan of the design in general though I do sorta like mine since the glass is sorta prismatic instead of opal. Yep, we have two of those mushroom lights that look  this here, brass and everything.  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/511x%2BJn4c1L._SX342_.jpg) They're Ok looking but they have like foil paper reflectors inside that i swear is a fire hazard. Every time i change a lamp the reflector sheds some black pebble things so there's always crap in the glass since I'll wash the glass and then install it and then the crap falls off from me setting the glass into place and tightening the screws. :8) Those are even smaller than the boob lights and use two lamps. They have two 60W incandescents. Those are nice and bright. I don't know why they didn't use two-lamp lights in the basement...

I've noticed the high pitched buzz in certain instances but not all. Probably because some have enclosed lamps so i don't hear it... For fixtures, I like those globe lights (fixtures with one vertical lamp and a glass globe) and I also like  this style globe  (http://rymantolentino.typepad.com/.a/6a010536284ad2970b019b0209fba9970d-pi) Neither would look good in my house though. I love stained glass chandeliers and table lamps but my mom insists that they're too gothic lol.

For the basement, since it's finished, I'd like a lensed fixture. I have a 4X F20T12/TS cloud/puff wraparound fixture but I don't have two of them. The 1X2 2X F20T12 surface mount fixture doesn't come close to matching it. Ah your getting a bunch of F15s and F20s? How many? I have five F20 Fixtures. Two 2X, two 1X, and one 4X. All are trigger start exept one, the single lamp undercabinet light. I have three F15 fixtures, all single lamp. Two are NOS strips and the other is an undercabinet light for preheat F15T8s only. Oen of my strips will operate both F15T12s and F15T8s but the other won't start T8s unless you touch the lamp because I guess the lamp is too far away. It won't even start T12s ungrounded. The other strip, also with a universal ballast, will start fine ungrounded. Both are fairly new, though the one that struggles starting is older, its our age, from 1998. 8)

I have a lot of F20 lamps but not a whole lot of fixtures. I have mostly F40 fixtures but not a whole lot of F40T12 lamps considering. I have three F15T12s and five or six F15T8s. All are cool white except for one F15/WW GE HOME LIGHT.. I have a ton of F14s considering I only have the one fixture. I have about two dozen of them. All are vintage though so I don't want to blow through then all. right now the F14 over my bed (my only F14 fixture) is running a Westinghouse F14/CW. I'd run a daylight but I only have three daylight F14s, a 1956 GE that I will NOT use up, and two Sylvanias from Darren that are from the past 10 years or so. Post 2003, as they have the (Hg) logo.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 13, 2014, 11:23:10 PM
I think you mis-linked since it goes to a pic of one of those octagon lights...
I know the foil paper thing, but mine don't have that, it's metal.  I'll take a pic...
Those "Schoolhouse" globes are cool, my late mother's house had a couple globes similar to that but MUCH larger (like 18" I swear) and a different base.  The sockets even looked semi-vintage, the house was custom/owner-built originally so maybe they came from somewhere else? They got replaced with "bowl lights" (GU24 CFL) during an energy rebate and we took them to ReStore the same time I got that Westy F20T12/CW with aluminum ends. 
Not sure, but likely at least two single lampers, a Lampi preheat F20, 3 2-lampers, and some Lampi preheat 2XF20s I'll probably just gut for parts. I like the Lithonia strips better hands-down.
Okay so here's a good one that might make your day: so the lights started flickering and got worse and worse.  Sometimes it'd snap over to my inverter instead.  I figured "There's water in the gas, just let the generator die, I'll just go drain the carb when it does" Finally this kept happening (We're talking like 15 minutes later).  Went out there, and everything seems fine.  Pushed the 30A plug plugged into a 15A>30A plug adapter attached to #10AWG UF direct burial in to make sure it wasn't loose...and the plug was warm! Uh oh! Unplugged it from the adapter and it turns out it was arcing internally, hot enough to melt plastic and burn the lug screw off, and the one prong is still in the adapter.  I'll let it cool down and replace the plug tomorrow morning, I found another 30A twist-lock wire-on plug already.  Hope the adapter isn't ruined too.  Glad I caught it though before something worse (namely, a fire in a shed with a gas can and lots of trees around) happened! I'll post the pic I took of it...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 13, 2014, 11:41:40 PM
Oops  heres theright link  (http://www.kolmart.com/assets/images/60_401.jpg) The schoolhouse fixture in my dad's parent's house is vintage. Very old. It's in their kitchen. Probably from the 50s or 60s, maybe even older.

Oh wow! so you're saying the plug shorted/arced? That's weird. One of those wire-on ones? yeah good thing you caught it when you did!

at my brother's birthday party i always do a halloween scare theme when it gets dark and i put my street lights in the fence posts so i can clean up and see what I'm doing. I get very un-code with the street lights too, twisting stripped leads around male plugs and taping them up and stuff. I was using an 18AWG cord to power my M-250R1 and OV-10IB, about 400W total with ballast losses. That cord was warm! it was cool out though since we're talking mid-october so the cord didn't overheat but I'm sure it could have. The stupid things we do in life lol. I end up using a million of those adapters that let you plug 3-prong grounded cords into 2-prong ungrounded cords too. I all them "cheats" since you cheat the system of not being able to plug grounded cords into ungrounded receptacles lol. The wiring for that is one big red-neck mess but it's only for one night and I don't even leave it up over night. I clean everything up that night, which is why i put up some of my lights all over the place.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 14, 2014, 09:35:44 AM
I've been known to do all the things like plugging two extension cords together to make a longer one, using those "ground" adapters, how about taking six of those Y-adpaters for light sockets to make a 1-lamp fixture a f-lamp one?  :o
Externally it is not noticeable plugged in...but when I unplugged it from the adapter it was immediately obvious something was amiss!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 14, 2014, 10:12:42 AM
Oh I connect more than one cord together all the time. I don't even understand what the big deal is. two short extension cords are the same thing as one long one. I think that's pretty stupid. As long as you don't exceed the maximum amperage rating on the cord it doesn't matter how many you use in my opinion. If the cord is in an area where people will walk, I will ties them together at the plug ends so they don't pull apart by accident.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 14, 2014, 05:19:02 PM
I've seen/done that before so they don't pull apart when run vertically or running handheld power tools like a Sawzall that get moved around constantly.
I'm going to redo my generator feed, using that Westy cartridge fuse switch to terminate the #10 solid NM wire and the plug in part will be #10 stranded so hopefully what I think happened (solid wire in places with vibration) won't happen again. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 14, 2014, 08:54:28 PM
Well I spent about three hours on that project but I'm happy to say it's done (for now anyway) and it works.  I had to do more awful Andy carpentry to get a place to mount the switch and had to fudge the mounting since I did't have the ideal combo of roofing screws and a screw gun.  So I fudged it with some 8 penny nails and had to use a large bolt as a makeshift nail-set since a hammer will not fit in there.  The wiring-up part was by far the most difficult; stranded #10 Wire is just as bad as solid in terms of flexibility (or more accurately, the lack thereof).  I still need a strain relief/clamp for the box too, I ran both wires through one knockout but there's still room for them to move.  I tried folding the solid one in the box but that just wasn't happening LOL. One thing I don't like is that the "arm" of the switching mechanism can hit the wires if you're like me and use one knockout.  I need to fix that sometime.  Also I want the solid direct burial wire to have less than 10 feet of extra slack but it's not buried yet so I'm waiting till I finalize the setup.  All in all I think it's better than it was though.  I'll take pics of my wiring job and post them.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 14, 2014, 09:23:01 PM
Ah yeah that was quite a freak thing! Hope it doesn't happen again!

Today I helped my grandpa (one who owned the appartment, my mom's dad) take out a toilet. Quite an experience, as I've never taken out a toilet before. We have a pipe for a toilet in our basement in the laundry room since there were originally plans for a half-bathroom downstairs but that never happened. Not enough space. There's a pipe in the floor for waste sink water too for a sink that was never put in. The pipework for the waste water is all there under the concrete floor but everything else would still have to be done (floor tiled, walls finished, maybe ceiling finished. A lot of extra work and all it would do is eat away storage space. Where the toiley pipe is, that's where I have my cluster of five lights in the laundry room, four cbraheads and the NEMA head in the center. Where I store my F40 fluorescent lamps is around where the sink pipe is.

BTW, are you going to put the wire in conduit? It's probably not required. I'd always use conduit. PVC underground and then lay some gravel rocks over it. With some crushed stone over the pipe, you could drive a trailer truck over it and it wouldn't break. EMT and rigid conduit would rust if contacted with the ground so I'd use PVC under the ground and EMT above ground, though NGrid does the opposite, rigid conduit under ground and then PVC on the wood poles.

With my cutler-hammer disconnect, if i mount it how I plan to and get some nice poles in my future backyard, I'm not sure how I will wire it. I plan to mount it in the garage, which will be connected to the house and finished. I will run a 240V line from the breaker box to the C-H disconnect and from there I'll run the load feed through the wall to outside in PVC conduit and run it up the side of the house to near the top, have a weatherhead and from there have a 240V triplex feed like the electric companies use to the poles. Joe Maurath Jr will probably be able to supply most of the line hardware and screw-in insulators. I'll have to buy the poles of course and probably the triplex feed. I'll probably end up needing to buy the mast arms too. I'd prefer 6ft arms. I have a 2ft, 4ft, and two 30" brackets currently.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 14, 2014, 11:25:37 PM
I doubt it but for another feed to another outbuilding we took PEX water pipe and ran #12 extension cord wire through it.  It's only a few inches underground but will eventually be taken out since it turns out the woodshed isn't even on our property! :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 15, 2014, 07:01:27 AM
water pipe! :o lol


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 15, 2014, 11:06:16 AM
Not copper, but that flexible PEX stuff.  It's still better than burying an extension cord, which I've also seen done somewhere. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 15, 2014, 04:21:35 PM
yeah that's about all that PEX crap is good for. I hate using it for water pipes. Copper pipe is just better IMO, though it is more expensive. My house is frm 2003 but fortunately uses copper pipes, unlike almost all new houses, which use PEX crap.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 15, 2014, 09:01:50 PM
Heeeeeyyyyyy! (Insert little kid on-the-brink-of-a-tantrum-meltdown voice there) Don't you insult my "PEX crap"! :) I like that stuff much better than copper! It supposedly won't break as easily if it freezes and has fewer fittings and isn't loud like copper plumbing can often be.  But to each his own LOL...
Taking out a toilet...remodeling a bathroom? It must be easy to remove but the install part is tricky I imagine, getting it aligned properly with the wax ring and all.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 16, 2014, 03:55:54 PM
Eh when it comes to plastic vs. metal I typically side with metal. I can't imagine hot water and plastic going good together.I saw a PEX house and it just looked kind of cheesey. I suppose both have their advantages though. Don't have to worry about scrappers lol.

The toilet had to come out so the floor can be redone. When the floor is redone the toilet and radiator will go back in place. To remove it all we did was shut off the oval water valve, drain the tank (by flushing it), disconnect the hose, get a yogurt cup to scoop the rest of the water out of the bowl, remove the nuts and washers, and it popped right up. I didn't know it was that easy to be honest. The old tennant was on drugs (we suspect, him leaving was on his own terms, probably because my grandparents were catching on to him, or so he thought) and left used needles all over the place and apparently smoked in the apartment and drop cigarettes, leaving burn marks on the floor, especially in the bathroom, hence the floor being redone. He seems like a weirdo to be honest. I'd met him once or twice and he seemed like he was high by the way he was talking to me. The appartment is right next door to my grandparents' house. They plan to sell their house and move into one of the four appartment suites (still owning the appartemtof course). Not sure when/if/how that's going to work out.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 17, 2014, 12:12:23 AM
Depends...I guess one advantage is that it burns! Someone told me a story about a fire happening and being put out by a washing machine inlet hose that burned off (Fire was started by a faulty clothes dryer). 
Same person also told me a story about having a major plumbing bummer occur in their house while out of the house for a few hours, and came home to multiple inches of standing water!
Another thing I like about PEX is it bends so fewer fittings: Half the copper problems I see are freezing, the other half is simply failed solder joints!
I'm currently building a cutting board (the kind you chop vegetables on) in the Sears-shoplight woodshop.  I might post it somewhere on here.
And remember how I said I was scoring lots of F20T12 fixtures and lamps? I'm replacing a few tomorrow at that person's house and getting paid both monetarily and in fixtures/lamps removed.  They need to be replaced though- they have issues, namely erratic starting (ungrounded trigger start, many with EOL and rectifying lamps), slow starters on mass preheat installs, etc.  It's really "interesting" in someone else's house finding the right light switch to get to the basement bathroom with no windows in windowless hallways when there's umpteen light switches and you never know which actually works because the starters take forever! Lots of warm white Philips Alto lamps in there.   They're Alto and warm white (Eww gross!) but they're free and work, so they'll just get used up by me.  And apparently there's a bunch of not-installed ones I can have too!
I'm half done painting my bedroom as of last night, too! 3 coats going from white to fairly dark blue, wow!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 17, 2014, 04:56:51 PM
It would take a long time to burn with water in it though. On a camping trip, we put a water bottle into the camp fire (yeah stupid, but we did it anyway) and the plastic deformed and stuff but it did not burn until it was at the base of the fire, when the plastic gave out and there was a HISSSS sound of the (at that point boiling) water turning into steam once the bottle burned. By that point, the water inside couldn't regulate the temperature of the plastic bottle so the bottle reached it's melting point. We did the same thing with a paper coffee cup filled with water. The cup was not directly exposed to the flame but it was hot enough for the white cup (a Dunkin' Donuts cup) to turn jet black, yet the inside remained white. The water appeared to be near boiling, as there were tiny bubbles on the bottom of the cup (inside where the water was)  but the seal at the base of the cup went and the water spilled out the bottom, another HISSSS sound. Then the next thing we know the paper cup is a small pile of ash lol.

Yeah single lamp trigger start absolutely sucks ungrounded. I generally don't find issues with the HPF ballasts, though the 1979 Universal Therm-O-Matic I pulled from my great-aunt's garage did not like to start ungrounded. Ironically, both fixtures lit up fine when i flicked them on before replacing the ballasts. The first time in a long time that they've both worked with one try.  I still converted them to T8 though. The new T8s are much brighter (SPX35 GE EcoLux lamps from 2006, some lamps that I'd gotten from school from those parabolic troffers) and the electronic ballasts are silent and start very reliably. How long they'll work, I don't know, but they do work. I told her if there's anything wrong that I'd fix them.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 17, 2014, 11:44:00 PM
For the first time my late 70s Therm-O-Matic wouldn't start the lamps until I touched them, a pair of GE Chroma 50s.
It would still eventually burn though like you said.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 21, 2014, 08:04:22 PM
Is the thing grounded? If not that's why. :P HPF ballasts are less fussy than NPF ones but they will refuse to start sometimes.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 23, 2014, 11:39:42 PM
It is not.  I was totally thinking of your (aunt's?) garage lights though when it happened.
I wonder if a slimline has the same issue? I think mine might...it's fussy about starting lamps although it's one of the 80s-90s Advance ballasts that are notorious for having capacitor issues.  It wouldn't light this morning and I touched the lamps after it had been lit maybe 2 minutes or so and it fired right up!
I might add that 60w energy saver slimlines flickering in 50 degree temps on a generator with hertz issues (lights flicker slightly constantly) is absolutely horrible.  So is, to a lesser extent, /950 lamps on magnetic ballast.
Most of my fluorescent fixtures that should be grounded (rapid start) are not since they're all wired to 2-prong cords.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 24, 2014, 03:49:47 PM
LOL yep my great-aunt's garage lights that I converted to F32T8 were very fussy. they're nice and bright now and she seemed very happy to have all the extra light now. :) The HPF 2X ballast was a Universal Therm-O-Matic-x and the single lamp NPF ballast was a Robertson ballast with a missing label. The label was loose in the fixture and I left it in the channel and my great aunt  wiped down the channel, it must have fallen out. She said she didn't throw anything out. So I just taped a piece of paper to it saying "Robertson F30/F40 RS 120V NPF" on it until I get or make a label for it.

The HArmony House preheater is doing well in my garage too. Nice and bright in my garage as well, except for winter when the Cooper Turret will be flickering and striating with its Philips Econ-o-watt lamps. I'd rather use them instead of use up my fullwattage tubes right now. Plus since the garage is cool in the winter (and stays relatively cool in the summer) it shouldn't run too hot. The ballast ran cool to the touch with 34W tubes after a half hour so that's saying something. It must have gotten warm when it ran all night that time the longjohn preheater had a meltdown since when i took off the reflector to inspect the ballast, the label was all wavy and bumpy. Could be from humidity though I guess. I'm pretty sure it was perfect when i got it but I don't remember.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 24, 2014, 10:33:30 PM
Nice to hear it's doing well.  My slimline is horrible on any non-blazing-summer day with it's 60 watt energy saver lamps, which never quit flickering.  If I ever get near a HOME DEPOT OR LOWES there will be 75 watt lamps in the offing.  I want to buy some daylight F20T12s too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 25, 2014, 04:26:55 PM
Ah in the winter the Cooper turret doesn't stop flickering and it is quite annoying but that's why I want to use those lamps up lol. Maybe I'll stick in F40s and save the F34s for NPF ballasts... They're fine when it's not cold though. Like in the summer they start up fine with no flicker. I think the reduced wattage slimlines are worse in the cold than the F34s. I think longer lamps are worse in the cold in general.

I'll have to see how dim my grandpa's shop is this winter. In his shop you can see your own breath. It's probably 45-50 degrees in the shop. He's got the heat going but it's a 1940 cinderblock building with a bunch of ratty garage doors so it's pretty drafty in the winter. In the summer it's not noticable since he doesn't have AC there. He's got circulation fans that blow outwards in the walls in the spraybooth room but they're more for air ventilation because of the spray fumes, not for heat.

I'd like to get some daylight F20s too or 5000K F20s, though the latter would probably be the dim 90 CRI variety which i don't want.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 26, 2014, 11:21:03 AM
The energy saver slimlines are horrible! I hear many people say they're the worst of the energy saver T12s.
Speaking of those lamps...I had a dream like that I found a 4-lamp turret 8ft slimline.  I think I must have had 60w energy savers in there since I remember it flickering in the dream.  For some reason I had it in the old finishing room of the friend's woodshop two of the Sears F40 shoplights came from.  Then somehow it was a VHO? I was digging through a bunch of junk piled up in the room (It's a little 10X10-ish room) and found four blackender Norelco F96T12/CW/VHOs (No idea if such a thing ever existed in real life) in white unmarked cardboard sleeves and was thinking "ooh, I'm set for life on spare lamps!" Then the dream ended...I hate those where you find a rare lamp then the dream ends!
I'm torn between daylight and C50 F20s.  The latter, although dim/flickery, will match well with the GE Chroma 50 and Sylvania Design 50 F40s I have in the next room over.  Next month I'm likely getting some warm white Alto F20s I might just use up.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 26, 2014, 04:31:44 PM
Yeah they really suck. Interesting dream. I typically don't remember my dreams and if I do, they're unexplainable. I just don't know how to put it into words. It's like there's a trillion things going on at once.

F20s should still be marked "CHROMA 50". They'd match nicely. I'm using a /WW GTE Sylvania in my preheat undercabinet light even though the rest of the room is cool white. I have so many of the lamps I figured I may as well use them up lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 28, 2014, 09:34:19 AM
I had another one this morning in which my school got some grant to become totally solar-powered, etc.  This I guess meant reducing energy consumption by converting fluorescents to LEDs? I walked into a small entryway (door , small room with one 2X40 wraparound and another door in real life) and saw one of the lamps had been changed...the diffuser was off and there was a GE Ecolux lamp in there? Then someone I know (building maintenance people that is) was retrofitting some fixtures in the same area.  I saw a green/yellow Universal Therm-O-Matic ballast in a pile of removed stuff and asked about removed lamps/ballasts but they said probably not, it's one of those stupid grants.  I said "I don't want you go get in trouble for dispersing the stuff to the general public" then woke up.  Funny enough, that 4 Non Blondes song "What's up" (And I pray/oh my god then I pray/ I pray every single day/ for revolution) was stuck in my head...that's what I think of the way those grants mandate disposal/destruction of anything removed LOL.
In real life, though, a 4XF96T12/VHO turret would be cool. (And bright!)
I like the Chroma 50 name better than "Sunshine" or "Closet & Laundry" or whatever they're called now.  I like Sylvania Design 50 better though, I have both in the same room and the D50 is brighter I think and the color is less purplish than the GE C50s.
The 4' preheat project is now 2-lamp.  I stuck in a half-dead Lumi-Kon LPF rapid start ballast for the other lamp.  Still need FS-4 starters, as the one will light a 40w lamp successfully but only for a little bit then will cycle again and again.  I tested a bunch of my 40w lamps on preheat though as of now to say the least.
I eventually hope to find a REAL preheat fixture, then rip the homemade guts out of that Sears shoplight it's in now and convert that thing back to what it should be: HPF rapid start. Ideally a nice post-PCB full power ballast too. 
I might add I had that thing running as a worklight while painting my room last night and that VitaLite PowerTwist lamp blows a 34w cool white right out of the water in brightness!


Title: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on September 29, 2014, 05:50:07 PM
Yeah a 4X VHO fixture would be bright! Would be very heavy too! I finally got to light my F25T12/30" Sylvania lamps from 1962 using a single lamp F14/15/20 trigger start ballast and a FS-4 starter (FS-2 wouldn't work, even for F20s). Needless to say, the lamps worked great! Yeah i bet it was a lot brighter than a F34! I wonder how many lumens the PowerTwist lamps and others like it were rated for. A good F40 IMO is around 3000 lumens.

I'm beginning to prepare for the Halloween Scare at my brother's birthday party Columbus Day weekend. Picking out which fluorescent lights will be involved. I will be using a SimKar single lamp F20 and F40 strips with BLB lamps in the scare and probably a couple "regular" fluorescents at the end as a guide light. I might run a 100W HPS in my 35W HPS mini highbay for the LPS-effect. To ease clean-up, I will be using a few cobraheads mounted in the fence posts. During the scare I'll remove the PCs and stick in open caps. I'm thinking my M-250R, M-250R1, and OV-10 since they're all 175W. I can only use three since that's how many yardblaster arms or conduit elbows I have for my lights. And of course they'll be mounted way up too lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 29, 2014, 11:00:45 PM
I don't know but BRIGHT! I wish I had more of them!
I'm possibly running a mini excavator for the first time soon and someone is trying to persuade me to make an offer on an ATV.  I'm also doing woodworking in the very shop two of my Sears shoplights and the Lithonia basket wraparound came from, as well as the Sylvania Design 50s and a few other lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on September 30, 2014, 08:27:18 PM
Ah cool! I bet you are looking forward to running a mini excavator! :D

Today I decided to take down my 175W MV silver M-250R (the obnoxiuously loud beehive) and out up my 50W HPS Cooper OVC (nearly dead silent). The OVC has a 1982 Sylvania coated 50w HPS lamp. I took out the drop lens and put in an FCO glass lens. This will be my first FCO light (well, first retrofitted-to-FCO light lol) mounted in my room. The coated lamp helps diffuse the harsh glare from the HPS arctube, though it's still hard to look directly at the lamp.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on September 30, 2014, 10:26:24 PM
I am looking forward to that, and to eventually hopefully running a "real" one too! I might make a video of it and put it on my YT account...I'm andycflbulb there.
Yeah buzzy ballasts are obnoxious indoors for sure! Trust me, I know...for awhile I had a 400w MH ballast acting as a step-up transformer (it's multitap) and it was horrible on MSW inverter power!
I moved my potted plants inside today and am using the first Sears shoplight (the one with the GE Bonusline full power ballast) and a pair of GE pre-Ecolux Plant & Aquariums in there.  We'll see how it does for the winter.
Hopefully in one of the next packages from the M-400A relatives is the 1970s GE flip-number clock-radio (They're storing all the stuff out of my mom's house after she passed and slowly sending it to me).  Not much on FM dial here or anything on AM during the day but after dark you can hear all sorts of stuff on AM, especially with a good vintage radio like that! I can hear San Francisco, CA easily at night here.  I wonder how well the clock part will run on MSW inverter electricity, it will be it's first time running off-grid so we will see.  Hopefully the little motor won't hum obnoxiously all night when I'm running on inverter electricity!
Ideally I want to find a nice vintage tuner/amplifier! Some Lighting Gallery people have them too, I know nicksfans on LG and Joe_347v have them. 


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on October 01, 2014, 04:09:18 PM
Yeah i bet it was really loud on inverter electricity! Now I have the Cooper OVC installed and when I turn it on I get momentarily confused since I don't hear any obnoxiously loud buzzing lol. The OVC is very quiet, about as loud as a fluorescent choke, even quiter than some chokes (i know some chokes that are actually pretty loud)

Once the lamp is warmed up, the ballast quiets down to dead silent. Cooper bought out Westinghouse's fixture line around 1982 and kept all the same components and they've slowly been using fewer and fewer Westinghouse parts as designs improve. Currently, they use the same PC sockets as the Westinghouse lights and almost the same latch to open the fixture. The terminal blocks are the same too, except that Cooper switched to black plastic instead of white ceramic. The internal labels in my OVC are similar to that of the late Westinghouse fixtures. They're not the same style but have the same words. Like the terminal blocks had a sticker over them saying CAUTION THIS UNIT WIRED FOR 120V (or whatever the voltage was) and there's a sticker inside the reflector next to the socket saying RELAMP ONLY WITH 50W S-68 HIGH PRESSURE SODIUM LAMP. I don't think the newer Coopers have this but my 1990 OVC does. My OV-15 TuDor from 1980-1981 also has a tag but yellow paper instead of silver plastic.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 01, 2014, 10:30:57 PM
That ballast starts off with a faint hum but gets louder when wired normally as it's 400w MH lamp warms up.  I have a Universal Therm-O-Matic 2XF40 that starts off like a hornet's nest, then quiets down after a few minutes to a soft hum, then gets this intermittent little ittzy buzz after awhile.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 02, 2014, 07:03:34 AM

that's really weird. Every HID I've ever had gets quieter when the lamp is fully warmed up. ??? Yeah I know what you mean about it changing from a hum to a IZZZ buz sound. I don't think it gets louder though, just a change in the pitch of the sound.  One interesting thing, I heard MV lamps will make a MH ballast run quieter than a MH lamp! MV lamps are also easier on MH ballasts than a MH lamp because mercs are easier to start and run at a slightly reduced voltage.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 03, 2014, 12:22:13 AM
I don't know on that one, I've "illegally" obtained lamps before like that but wouldn't condone it...basically don't blame me if you get caught and get in trouble LOL.
I went and did some woodshop today at the former US History teacher's house (The one the Sears shoplights and many F40s came from).  While there I got to climb around up in the attic above the shop. (There's stuff up there which will eventually be gotten rid of) Of course I was sort of hoping to find a NOS case of PowerTwists or a F40 preheater or AT LEAST another Sears light but nope.  All sorts of other things up there though.
Also scored some 12vDC CFLs from him, two of which I am now using.  One of them is 5000K too and pretty bright! He said they were all pretty dim (I expected mercury starved taking forever to warm up; he has a few that do that but that one is not).  They all striate at first though like F34T12 lamps which I think indicates krypton gas?
If you can't tell by that his place is off-grid too just like mine.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 03, 2014, 04:14:21 PM
Hmm well they're just going to get taken to the recycling center otherwise, so I think I'll grab them...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 03, 2014, 07:56:55 PM
I've even cannibalized the electronic ballasts out of dead spiral CFLs into other things...usually only the tube dies and the ballast is fine in my experience, as long as it wasn't dimmed or used in a really hot place.  I've never had one of those legendary CFL meltdowns happen in my house or anywhere I've witnessed, though I've seen the aftermath of it happening before, especially at someone's house where I swear almost every ceiling light was a recessed can...lots of hear buildup!
Usually from what I've been able to analyze, they're pretty much instant-start (except for older ones) with cathode heating.  I've admittedly tried them on dimmers and I've seen how they behave on severe voltage drops plenty of times.  When the arc will no longer strike they cathodes still glow...I've seen EOL ones do that and I think in that case it IS the ballast.  Anyway I think the cathodes act as the EOL sensing mechanism, when one blows it won't power up.  I had one die a few days ago (a 13w 2700K GE helical) that glowed bright blue at the ends and flickered after being turned off and on.  Then it went totally...I didn't save that one though since I broke it trying to remove it and didn't want to be around the mercury trying to save/cannibalize the electronics.  But I've done it multiple times before...
In your case they'd be cool with 4100K or 6500K lamps!
For "too dim" those 12vDC CFLs are pretty bright! I like that little 9w 5000K one a lot!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 03, 2014, 09:57:28 PM
I've never had a CFL fire either. They just eventually stay dark when the switch is flipped. I had an older square base GE from the mid-2000s go mercury starved though. I kept it. The ends are very black and when first switched on, the ends flash a hot blue-white color like an electric spark almost lol. I also remove CFLs that work if the plastic discolors too much. We DO take CFLs to be recycled as Lowes and HomeDepot have those CFL drop offs where it's basically like a book drop at a library. They don't accept linear fluorescents and I'm not paying to have them taken to the EcoDepot at the dump so I just stick them in the regular trash and they take them...

Yeah if the lamps are dead, I can buy whatever color temp i want. I'm not a fan of the /WW but all my PL adapters so far have been NOS and came with /WW lamps so I might as well use them up. I'd probably get 3500K PLs as replacements if they make them. Areas that I'd want 4100K or cooler I'd use linear fluorescents. I'll have to compare lumens. Typically 3500K has the highest lumens and I like the light from them for living space. They're warm-tone but not drab and yucky like oldschool /WW lamps are. Even the newer /WW or soft white tubes I'm not a fan of. If I want something that warm I'd use CFL or incandescent. Linear fluorescents that are that warm tone just seem odd to me lol. Like seeing a 6500K CFL. I'm not used to seeing them so when I see one in service it looks odd even though i prefer cooler color temps in general.

I'll go back there next wednesday and I'll bring a jacket to wrap the lamps in, though unfortunately it looks like it's going to hike back into the lower 70s next week (it's been in the upper 50s to mid 60s all week here with rain/clouds every day) so it's not really jacket weather, but I wouldn't raise any flags by having a jacket. I'll manage. It's not like I'm taking brand new lamps in the box. I'll be taking them out of a cardboard box marked BAD BULBS about 2ft long, a foot wide, and maybe about 9" tall. They do have newer bulbs stocked in there but they're crappy GreenLite CFLs lol. They have a number of nice old 90s PL adapters in use but they get replaced as the lamps EOL instead of them replacing the PL lamps themselves. They probably don't realize they can replace the lamps. They have a bunch of non-full power F40T12/RS wraps too. The kitchen got new T8 wraps but they still maintain the other T12s.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 04, 2014, 12:41:40 AM
Yeah it's cooling down here quite a bit. I was talking to someone in Santa Barbara, CA yesterday on the phone though and they've had no rain at all this year...major drought!
Sometime within the next few weeks I might get the opportunity to buy some new (preferably daylight) F20T12 lamps to preserve my May 1984 Westy silverender and June 1985 GE F20T12/CW.  Probably Ecolux F20T12/Ds or F20T12/C50s.  (I like that dim flickery /950!)
I've seen drop bins for CFLs in supermarkets and always laugh when I see incandescents in there!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 04, 2014, 09:45:33 AM
ahh yesh i heard about the drought.
We've had a relatively dry summer compared to what we usually have. This past week it's been drizzly out all week but no downpours. I personally prefer a nice downpour instead of a week of drizzle.

Ah get those tubes if you can! Definitley preserve that silverender! Yeah I dropped a MV lamp in one of those bins before lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 06, 2014, 07:37:59 PM
I decided to mount my 100W HPS light in my room instead of the 50W HPS. The 100W HPS light is my early 80s GE M-250R1 Chicago fixture, with the 70/90W S54 HPS ballast (runs 100W HPS lamps at either 70 or 90W). I find that 70W HPS lamps run okay in the fixture too when the ballast is set to the 70W tap. I noticed that the 100W lamp takes a little while to strike in the fixture, more so on the 70W tap. Joe Maurath told me that GE made special 70/90W HPS lamps, and that maybe that's what this fixture needs, but they're medium base. in the mean time, 100W HPS lamps will work fine, as the fixture is rated for S54 lamps, which are standard 100W HPS.

My brother's birthday party is this Sunday (his birthday is on Tuesday the 14th of this month) so that means I'm doing my Halloween Scare with my lights. I'll be using a F20BLB and a F40BLB in conjunction with some posters I made with fluorescent markers (meaning they glow under BLB light- SWEET!). Do you remember my 2x F20T12/TS 1X2 suface mount fixture with the wood trim? Well, I masked off the opal diffuser with yellow paper and made it into a sign using electrical tape for letters. Last year I used my LED street light as a sign. And I'll have some strobe lights and then those halloween string lights too. I'll have either an F8T5 or F15T8 fixture at the end as a guide light at the end of the scare along with some solar lights to outline the path through the yard at the end.

I will have my three 175W MV lights stuck in fence posts to see when I clean up. My OV-10IB,  my NOS 175W MV M-250R1, and my obnoxiously loud silver M-250R. I'll be using all coated lamps and they'll have PCs in them so they'll turn on when it gets dark. In fact, the entire set-up will be controlled by photocells! The three 175W MV lights will have their own PCs and the rest of the lights will be split on two circuits, so two PCs controlling the other lights and five PCs total. Actually, one of the 175W MV lights will be controlled by two PCs, its own PC and the PC controlling the circuit it is on. Whichever PC is more sensitive will win. I plan on drawing a diagram up and posting it in the gallery so stay tuned for the next day or two! ;)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 12, 2014, 02:00:26 AM
Oh cool! GE sure made some interesting stuff back in the day...
Nice, take pics of all those MVs lit at once!
I was recently at the school with the 34 watt WW and CW GE Watt-Misers of every post-EPACT generation and the bad ones have been replaced by GE Ecolux F34/CW/C41s, which seem CWX-ish.  One classroom that was someone's office had half of it relamped with post-'03 Sylvania F40/DSGN50 lamps though...neat!
And how about a whole apartment lit by preheat PL13s? Cool but I don't like those blinky preheat PLs amazingly enough.  Some were in those commercial-looking recessed cans...I will post pics.
Also saw some old Wide-Lite F-series floods recently...very cool indeed!
Also saw a whole school gym lit with MH highbays, a rare sight nowadays! It also had real wood floors...I really think that adds class!
Also had some insulators from the house in C broken by the postal service...AGH! Some are repairable it looks like, others are smithereens, and others are okay.  The box of pieces is sitting out in the garage awaiting further dealing-with.  But my collection here is growing at least!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 12, 2014, 11:46:10 AM
Sure, I'll take pics of the stuff set up. I set up most of the lighting last night. It rained saturday until about 3PM and remained cloudy and wet out all night so everything was wet and nasty when I put it up. Everything works too, which is nice. I will have two BLB set-ups too (F20 and F40)

 BTW, I got three of those reflector PLs and they all have working lamps! O_O.  (http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-99360) Two are pretty loud so maybe they were a nuisance. The third is dead silent though so who knows... There are a couple more I think and if so I'll grab those too. They're from 1990, so pretty old for a PL adapter and they're very over-built too!

Yeah C41 is CWX. Same number of lumens and same CRI but the color isn't purplish. The WalMart near my relamped the entire store with GE 5000K T8s, replacing the cool white T8s. There were only a few cool whites burnt out so IMO they should have just spot relamped the dead ones with new CW lamps but all new WalMarts are 5000K now (which i prefer, but i just thought it was a waste of lamps).

My high school's gymnasium has a hardwood floor too. My middle school and elementary schools have rubber floors, which actually hurt more when you fall. Rubber burns your skin if you fall and slide on the floor. Lit by Mh lamps eh? Cool! Not too many left! In Cranston they replaced all the HID highbays in the gymnasiums district-wide with 6x F32T8 motion sensor fixtures. The gyms are much brighter now. If they used 6500K lamps it would be like being outside! Or maybe even 5000K.

You don't like PLs! I don't like them in "living space" since they start off dim but I'd like them in a hallway. My ideal house would have a basement with a hallway that goes from the bottom of the stairs and then ends at two doors. Straight takes you into the workshop/my collection. Left (or right) takes you into the laundry room. Then there would be a room off the laundry room for storage and stuff, with another door to my workshop just as a second means of egress. The hallway would have a drop ceiling with recessed cans and PL13 adapters. The laundry room would also have a drop ceiling and would have my 3X F32T8 parabolic troffer and a 2X F40/RS 1X4 drop dish opal troffer that I'll hopefully get some day. The storage room may or may not have a drop ceiling. Rooms with a drop ceiling will also be drywalled and have a (commerical style) tile floor. The workshop/my collection room will be unfinished and will have T12 preheat and rapid start shoplights suspended from hooks.

If I don't have the workshop area I would have a pole barn similar to John (dieselnut) on LG and have it in there. Then it would just be the laundry room and storage room and maybe a playroom for my future kids or whatever lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 12, 2014, 07:13:20 PM
That's pretty cool that they work!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 13, 2014, 10:45:45 AM
I'd like to find some nice bright energy saver lamps someday...I hear the new GE 60w HL ones are decently bright (I know HL35 is 5900 lumens :shock:).  Someone on LG was saying they really miss the now-banned GE F96T12/SP65...I've seen those, they're bright and a nice cool color!
I also know of a supermarket lit with a mix of 6500K and 3000K or 3500K F32T8s, it looks unique in there I think! I like the daylight effect in a store like that. I should have taken pics.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 13, 2014, 04:32:01 PM
5900 lumens is amazing for an ES lamp, even for a full wattage lamp! :o 75W Sylvania CWX lamps only produce 3872 lumens! Aren't all daylight lamps rather dim? I didn't know they ever made bright daylight lamps. In general it seems 3500K lamps are the brightest and 6500K lamps are the dimmest.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 13, 2014, 09:22:59 PM
I always thought it was more like 5000K was the dimmest but of course ironically that dim flickery /950 is my favorite color!
The old school /530 warm white lamps can be bright too, albeit with a rather IMO ugly color...for awhile I had a room lit with five F40WW GE Mainlighter lamps and it was REALLY bright in there! I ended up getting sick of the /WW and went with 4100K (both SP41 and CW) then finally to /950...by itself it looks great!
Ever notice grow-lux wide-spectrum lamps (namely GE F40PL/AQ Plant & Aquarium) flicker just like /950 does? Mine do but they're bright on the full power GE Bonusline ballast in the first Sears shoplight...that thing was my first vintage ballast/fixture and it has served me very faithfully, currently running 14 hours a day, every day, as a plant light.  Then I started finding all those GE Mainlighter lamps (Well I knew of them before that) and the Metalux/Gibson troffer fixtures with their Advance Kool-Koil and Universal Therm-O-Matic ballasts...at one point in time I was bringing home F40 lamps literally every day!
I'm thinking of documenting the stories of lamps/fixtures/ballasts I have in case some other interested person finds them someday in the future...I'm always amazed at how much this stuff has been through and wonder how much it's "seen" over the decades.  Many of my lamps/fixtures/ballasts are special to me because I remember seeing them long before they became mine. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 14, 2014, 06:01:28 PM
The 90CRI 5000K lamps are dim and flickery, not a fan of those. I love the 800 Series 5000K lamps though. Yeah the /WW lamps are pretty bright, I think that's why it was common for offices to have them (since 3500K wasn't really a big thing back then, nor was 5000K). Personally I would think offices would have daylight lamps since supposedly cooler tone light makes people more awake this more productive. I noticed a difference when I popped a /WW tube in my closet light. Even with the light on I rolled back to sleep lol. I only have /WW, /W (3500K), and /CW F20s though, so I couldn't test 5000K or daylight.

I had bought a GE plant & aquarium lamp before by mistake. I returned it. It was a nice pink color but that's not what I had wanted lol. I don't know a whole lot of history behind the lights in my collection. I know where most if not all were used just prior to me getting them but before that I don't know. I assume most of my lights were originally installed in the places i got them (with the exception of my late grandpa's fluorescents and my great-aunt's flourescents, which came from my great-grandpa's work). Those Western Electric industrial fixtures are pretty sweet too since they're quite unique. So far I have one out of the three F20s and none out of the four F40s.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 15, 2014, 10:29:58 AM
On many of mine I know where they were previously installed and saw them lit there even! Those Sears shoplights were even spot-relamped by me on various occasions before I got them too!
In a couple cases I know I'm the third owner of fixtures...that Lithonia "basket" wraparound is such a case.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 15, 2014, 10:59:41 PM
Someone just sent me some 30-odd year old B&W pics of my current house and I must say it's quite a shock! There's even a vintage TV and stereo system visible in one of them I might even post here! And there's a noticeable absence of fluorescent lights too!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 16, 2014, 06:59:37 AM
Oh wow that's pretty sweet! My high school has a picture of the campus back in the 60s(?) and it also looks quite different. If I saw old pictures of my house it would just be a bunch of trees lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 18, 2014, 07:14:04 PM
Yeah I really want pics of the outside, especially the front! My house has been built at literally ten different times so yeah, lots of evolution.
I'm super busy these days and find I'm having hardly any time to devote to this site...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 24, 2014, 04:21:32 PM
Got another one of the reflector PL adapters and a spare reflector. There were two loose reflectors in there so I grabbed one in case down the road I need a replacement, since I doubt I'll ever find one. The fourth adapter is pretty quiet. The original OSRAM lamp is EOL though and the lamp continuously flashed. So I'll need a new lamp for it. There are some NOS PL13 2700K lamps at the ReStore (ironically OSRAM lamps) so I can stock up on some the next time I make it there. The cash flow has been dry lately though. I'm still trying to get a job. >:( Once I get a job I'll see if I can get a car.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 24, 2014, 10:54:24 PM
Yeah a car would be a good idea...do you have your license or at least a permit yet? I'm old enough to be more or less fully driving (in the state of Alaska anyway) but have never even started.  Granted, I live in a place without roads/cars, but I spend lots of time in places that do so it's something I need.
I'm going on a trip this weekend so I'm going to try to get to a hardware store and buy some FS4 starters, a slimline plunger-side lampholder, some 75 watt slimlines, and some modern F20T12 lamps.  (All for various projects).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 25, 2014, 12:23:04 PM
I currently have a learner's permit. I have my road test November 18th and if I pass that, I can swing down to the DMV and get my license that day. If you don't have roads or cars where you live, do you guys just walk everywhere? Does your dad have a vehicle so you guys can travel into town or whatever? How far away from a town are you (even just a little village with a grocery store and a barber shop or something?) and is there any place nearby that's on-grid? Are there any stores that are off-grid? They must have like a tractor trailor truck engine running them lol.

Ahh good luck! Hopefully you can make out like a bandit. BTW, I found a place in the church where one of those PL reflectors is still in use. There's a pair of recessed cans outside on a canopy/over-hang over one of the exits. One has a new CFL reflector that starts off dim and pink and the other is a preheat PL13! So when it dies I guess I'll see it in the dead lamp bin lol. It's FULL of bugs/dirt and crap too but still works and doesn't start off dim. I'm thinking one of the reflector PLs came from the can with the new spiral reflector CFL. There's one more entrance that might have an overhang with recessed cans. I don't know...

That church has some LOA circline adapters in the boiler room too, installed in keyless sockets. Most of the place is spiral CFLs now though. There are also these big PL adapters with white bases and big PL lamps about the thickness of a T5 tube.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 28, 2014, 07:32:02 PM
I haven't even started, though people are telling me the rules of the road as they drive.
Here I walk everywhere though some people have ATVs. 
I'm about 70 miles straight as the crow flies from a "real" town (Sitka, AK, about 10,000 people which is totally on grid).  It's about a 45 minute floatplane ride from here or a 4-24 hour boat trip, depending on speed/type/weather/which way you take.  (The long way in bad weather).  I'm sorta in the marine "driving training" and do decently (better than many autopilots do at staying on course)...there's rules of the road there too I'm not totally memorized on yet but I've passed my "road test" LOL...a professional longtime captain friend even trusts my "driving" LOL. (with an 86' boat too).  I prefer boat trips since I'm currently accumulating documented seatime to get a captain's license.  (you have to have 1 year (365 days) since your 16th birthday). 
Also the two main boats I drive are 72' and 86'...
I bought some GE "HN" FS4 starters to get the homemade preheater closer to completion (It now runs 40w lamps). I priced out some GE Ecolux F20T2/C50s but decided not to buy any this trip.  ($11.99 is steep for a .50/F20-at-Restore person like me. 
Also have a GREAT (well not really) ballast replacement story: A 2ft T8 wrap on my boat went out.  Went to replace the Advance 'AmbiStar' electronic ballast with another commercial-quality Advance 120-277v one.  No worky! SO now I've exchanged it for a new one but haven't installed it yet...my dad probably will. It sorta lit but not really.  I miss the days of magnetic ballasts LOL...and it was running the original year-and-a-half-old lamps too!
It's an American Fluorescent fixture with crappy tombstone lampholders with the little green discs to tell you the lamp is installed correctly.  I can't figure out how to remove them to take the new leads all the way to the sockets so I have to splice them (I don't like wirenut connections on 600v OCV I might add)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 28, 2014, 08:31:09 PM
I also forgot to add the aforementioned fixture was actually installed by an electrician who grew up in the house I currently live in.  We might get to meet in person next month.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 29, 2014, 04:55:50 PM
Oh wow I guess you're really in a rual area! If you got that M-400A and mounted it off your house (probably just for display, as 250W plus 50W or whatever for ballast losses is a lot of unecessary stress on the inverter) some people might not even know what the heck it was lol. I admit, I take being on-grid for granted. I'm a boy scout so we often camp out in the woods and there's no electricity but I always enjoy coming hoem to my house with all of its amenities lol. On-grid, as long as you pay your bill on time every month, it doesn't really matter how much electricity you consume.

Ahh good ol' HN starters lol. I have some too, that came in GE packaging. Yeah you won't catch me spending 12 bucks on a F20T12 fluorescent lamp lol. Ugh, stupid electronic ballasts. if it's 2ft just get a pair of chokes and make it preheat or install a 2lamp TS ballast lol. Eh wirenuts don't bother me but on my fixtures I try to avoid that as much as possible. As for those rotating disc lampholders, if you remove the fixture, you sould see that the sockets snap onto the fixture housing and they can be popped out using a flathead screwdriver if you're careful. Interesting about the electrician installing it. Hope you guys have a good time.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 30, 2014, 11:40:24 AM
Yeah a 2000w inverter or a 2000w or 10000w generator would run it fine but yeah no need.  I have one 175w MV yardblaster and that's it...and it's like never used.
I know what you mean, I'm the same way. 
Yeah the yellow GE packaging? I like that better than the "new generation" packaging.  I wish they were metal-cased though although it won't matter inside a fixture that's supposed to be rapid start so you never see the starters anyway. 
I might break down and buy some anyway but not right now.  Interesting to know...I think I'll leave them spliced though so it eases future ballast changes. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 30, 2014, 05:17:56 PM
Yeah for me I'd want to be courteous to my neighbors too, since I have them on all sides but I'm thinking you don't need to worry about neighbors too much? If you have neighbors they're probably far enough away where light trespass wouldn't be a huge issue. My 70W PSMH deck fixture lights up my neighbors' houses better than it lights my own yard lol. It's pretty much useless, creating more glare than light. When I move out I plan to take the fixture with me and just put up a new incandescent fixture.

Yep, they had the old style yellow packaging (same for the Leviton Y-slot sockets being sold under GE) though at that time, GE was still using the old packaging for lamps and stuff too. It was a few years ago that I bought those HN starters. Yeah I prefer metal cased starters when the starters are exposed but it doesn't bother me in fixture like undercabinet lights with diffusers or when the starters are semi-hidden behind the lamps.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on October 30, 2014, 10:17:10 PM
Exactly.  My closest neighbor is a couple hundred feet away but there's lots of trees/bushes between us/them. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on October 31, 2014, 04:34:45 PM
Ah I see.  My house (with all the flags along the curbside) is surrounded by near-by houses with little-to-no trees/bushes. (https://www.google.com/maps/@41.7665708,-71.5110223,3a,50.3y,218.39h,87.72t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1s28V8IfRkv4_-9iS4PB0J0w!2e0?hl=en)

You can also see the backside of my house  from the next street over, as my neighbor who lived behind me (who built my house) owns a lot-and-a-half of land.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@41.7661366,-71.5117744,3a,15y,58.49h,88.34t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1si6--8L8-JJhshiNlOuhR7Q!2e0?hl=en) You can see some of my traffic signs on the fence (which are no longer mounted, as they're tucked away in the shed). The streetview was from before the deck was exended. The spot where my light pole was is where the pole with the long whitish sign is (though it's on the extended portion, which comes away from my house another 6-8 feet).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 01, 2014, 09:15:46 PM
I tried finding the google streetview of the house I grew up in but no luck, that street isn't covered.
On a side note I noticed the Sylvania F96T12/CW/SS lamps in my Lithonia slimline fixture are getting some mercury spots on the phosphor, typical of older energy saver T12 lamps.  They never quit flickering either! (In an unheated room at 45 degrees)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 01, 2014, 10:28:18 PM
Ahh streetview had just about covered every road around here. The did a couple of freeways this past summer between june september of 2014. Are those mercury spots the typical "freckles" that appear? I guess they have quite high hours on them? My Econ-o-watt F34/CWs in the Cooper turret have no signs of wear, but they have guards at both ends and probably have low hours anyways. My fixtures aren't used often enough to show signs of wear lol. Only IS lamps end up showing wear and die. My 1973 Thermomatic shoplight has two GE C41 lamps and they have no blackening on the ends at all and they've been up at least two years now, maybe three. I just don't use my lights often enough lol. (plus the ballast lags with starting them so maybe that's even easier on the lamps than a normal RS ballast).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 02, 2014, 12:53:13 PM
Yeah the house had streets on both sides, one used to be StreetView'ed but I guess it isn't anymore for some reason (I got there once before).  Even so, if it was current-ish it could be a shock seeing what that house looks like now compared to how I remember it.  Part of me never wants to drive by again but curiousity will probably get the better of me someday. The neighbor's house across the street has a streetview though from the opposite side, one from 2008 and one from 2012 where you can see remodeling progress happen. 
Yep, the "freckles" I think. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 02, 2014, 03:10:39 PM
 here's my old house. The one me, my mom, and my dad lived in before my brother was born and we moved to my current house.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@41.7702127,-71.4565769,3a,34.1y,200.75h,86.14t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1s7tlcV10VwEs_Tf9rtx4-1g!2e0?hl=en) We sold the house in 2001 or 2002 and lived in my grandpa's appartment building until our new house was finished. It was red when we lived in it, then they painted it blue, and now it's a tan color (but that's after the streetview was taken). The house was for sale a few years ago and we went to the open house so we could see the house again. Boy it was quite the throwback! I was like three years old the last time I had been in there! A few things had been done, such as the patio being turned into a finished porch (though they kept the motion sensor floodlight up on the side of the house where they built the closed-in porch lol). They also added four curved basket F40/RS wrap lights in the basement in addition to the keyless sockets down there. I had asked my dad if we had put them up when we lived there and he said no, there was only the incandescent lights. There were also F32T8 cheesy plug-in shoplights in the garage, which were also added. The only light we had out there was the garage opener's light bulbs. The hatch to get into the attic was in the garage too. The garage was unfinished, so there was a door in the wall (about 30"X30") where you climbed through to get into the attic. We always kept a padlock on it because my dad was paranoid about someone breaking into the garage and using the attic hatch to get into the house lol. There used to be a bunch of trees at our old house but they all got diseased so we had to cut all of them down except for one in the backyard, but it looks like that one had to go too. Ironically, the pole in front of my old house is also on the left property line (when looking from the street) and is a 100W HPS M-250R2 on a tapered elliptical arm with a transformer on the pole.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 02, 2014, 04:57:40 PM
That's a pretty nice house; was it just too small for you guys? What year was it built? What year did you see it again? (Did you tell the realty people you guys used to live there?)
I'd love to see the house I spent most of my childhood again (especially the inside) but it's not as likely considering I don't live in the same town.  Do you remember living there very well?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 02, 2014, 05:31:12 PM
Yeah it was a nice house but yeah, way too small. My dad bought it when he moved out of my grandparents' house in his 20s before he met my mom. It was a good starting-family house though. I checked online and it was built in 1959. It has baseboard heat. No central air conditioning.

According to Zillow.com, the house was sold on 5/51992 (to my dad) for $110,000.  Then on 12/30/02 we sold it for $210,000 (the extra $100,000 from selling it allowed us to afford the house we live in now). The most recent sale record they have is 8/1/11, selling for $175,000. I think it was sold again in 2013, which is when we saw it. Yep, we told them that we lived there before and were just reminiscing. The lady said that she was glad we were there because we verify if there were any major issues with the house that the people who were selling it didn't mention. There wasn't any, other than it just being too small.

The house we live in now was completed in spring of 2003, but the build date of the house is 2001 in public records since that was when they did the rough framing and septic and foundation. The contractor (who lives behind me actually!) got sick and construction got delayed about a year so we ended up staying in one of my grandpa's four appartments for about a year. In the records, the sale date of my house when we bought it was 5/19/03 for $257,000.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 02, 2014, 09:20:14 PM
Yeah it looks typical 50s-60s from the outside.  Did you guys do any major work?
The house I spent my childhood in was built in 1988 by a county engineer (hence I think some of the features I bet you'd have to get a code variance for like a 37% grade driveway, no bathroom on the primary floor, and some REALLY steep, narrow stairs going up to the loft (4th floor).  I googled something else in that town when we were trying to sell it and listings for that house came up...I think Zillow said it was sold April 1994 (to my mother) then we sold it for $272,000 (It was a fixer upper by then and needed work) on April 11, 2014.  Within a week of being listed it was in escow!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 02, 2014, 10:07:41 PM
Not that I know of...

Oh wow that house sounds like a bit of a mess. My dad's parents' house (late grandpa, grandma, and aunt's house) had no bathroom on the main floor, just upstairs, so in the 70s, my grandpa and great-grandpa turned the screened-in porch into a furnished room, complete with those crank windows and wood paneling walls lol. They included a small (and when I say small, I mean TINY!, like the size of a port-a-john) bathroom with a toilet and sink. The small bathroom and the family room, as it's called, have a drop ceiling but the family room has no ceiling lights. There's only a wall-mounted scone light, in place of where the old light was next to the old doorway when it was a screened-in porch. The only electrical wiring they did was outlets and a couple floodlights for the yard (and a recessed square fixture for the mini-bathroom) all of which was wired from the basement and up. (no basement under the old porch, so they had fed it through one of the basement windows, which was blocked by the porch and took out the window and boarded it up with plywood i think.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 04, 2014, 09:37:22 PM
It wasn't that bad actually.  I would attach photos but can't figure out how LOL.
It needed work by the time we sold it but will be a nice remodel for someone.
Jalousise windows and wood fake plank plywood paneling! Very 70s! Does that house have any fluorescents?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 04, 2014, 10:49:21 PM
To attach a pic inthe forum, it has to be posted either in the gallery or on another site like the LG, Flickr, etc and then linked here. To embed a picture in the gallery here, copy the url and stick it in (http://<url here>) brackets.

Just the family room is like that. There's a plaque saying "BUILT BY JOHN KERSHAW - 1973" (my great-grandpa, who was actually my dad's mom's step-dad, as her dad died of skin cancer when she was around my age and my great-grandma remarried. She outlived her second husband too, lost to Alzimheir's around 2000. She died in 2012 at 96 years old and my great-aunt lives in her house now, the one who I change out the outlets for to three-prong)

Rest of my grandparents' house is from a really long time ago, not 70s like the family room. Ungrounded outlets. It's a colonial style house. The only fluorescents are the Western Electric F40s in the long 3-car tunnel-like garage, the F14/TS strip over the kitechen sink above a cut section of troffer diffuser, and two fluorescents in the basement, the 3X F20 halfpiper and F90T17 louvered fixture.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 06, 2014, 08:29:30 PM
Yeah there's so many vintage fluorescents in your family!
I mounted a nice old (draftsman? photography? lamp above the desk in the home office, with a 6500K 13w spiral CFL. Quite a bit bluer than the GE Reveal incandescent I had in there at first!  I might post a pic or two....


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 09, 2014, 11:01:11 AM
Guess what? I got one of those vaportight housings from the camp i go to during the summer! They were still in the pile, so at night this weekend (we were camping there) my scoutmaster and I took a lens and two top housings and put them in the bed of my dad's truck (which has a bed cover over it). I took two housings since none had all six latches so I took two so I could transfer the latches over to one and pick the best one. It's just the plastic housing though, no fixture. They really did scrap the fixtures but left the plastic casings. So I'll be on the lookout for a 2-lamp 4ft strip light to stick in the vaporproof case. The casing has two threads connected in the top that the strip screws onto.

I need to scrub them clean now and then will eventually get a strip fixture for it.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 09, 2014, 09:42:45 PM
Oh nice find then! Just keep checking ReStore and you'll probably find a 2XF40 or 2XF32T8 strip sooner or later.
At first I thought you were describing incandescent vaportights and thought...wait...those have GLASS covers! Then you mentioned 4' strips and I caught on.
There's a pic in my gallery on LG of what is now much better than the vaportights you buy at Home Depot...a circa 1940 solid brass housing/cage.  It's been through a lot: a fire, several days underwater, reckless painters, and my Dad and/or an electrician that actually grew up in my current house restoring it. (I'm glad they did!) Socket assembly might be more modern though...it's something like "Kulka Electrical MFG. Co. Inc.  http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?album=2350&pos=0&pid=98659


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 10, 2014, 04:37:07 PM
Well, turns out the diffuser I grabbed was for another style vaportight that they had laying around. I guess karma got me for just taking them lol. I'll hang onto the diffuser as long as it doesn't get in the way (I don't expect it to). I had scrubbed everything down, brought it inside, snapped the latches into the top housing, put the diffuser on one of the housings and: it's 2" longer than the top housing!!! I never thought to see i it was the right fit, assuming they had bought all the fixtures at once and they were all the same size. Apparently not!

So, that being said, I have to order two new diffusers (i decided to keep both vaportight housings and get two diffusers and buy six new latches. I'll keep the housings in the shed and when I get a pair of strips I'll stick them in).

I asked  here  (http://www.plasticsforlighting.biz/product/curled-2/) for a quote on two diffusers. They repsonded and said they're $19 each plus shipping. Sounds pretty reasonable. I also asked  This place  (http://www.bergeninc.com/lighting-vapor.aspx) for a quote on two diffusers and six latches. The white plastic latches on the PDF on that page I linked are EXACTLY like the ones on the housings I have and the demensions appear almost identical, so I suspect mine are just an older generation of that housing (maybe not that manufacturer, but I'm sure more than one manufacturer uses the same mold). I also needed to get a pair of plugs for the ends of the fixtures, since the originals were all cracked and broken. fortunately one was intact enough to read the part number, which lead me to  this site,  (http://www.caplugs.com/docpages.aspx?pagename=requestsamples) where I explained my situation and asked for four free samples of the part number (since they only sell in 1000 or 5000 packs).

So We'll see. All vaportight fluorescent fixtures are is a fiberglass upper housing and an acrylic diffuser with a strip light mounted inside. The upper housings have two brass threads (one at each end) and the strip light just goes on with two nuts after the fiberglass housing is screwed into the ceiling. You can suspend them with special kits but mine were originally surface mounted and have holes board through the tops where the romex clamps screwed on (they drilled their own holes on top as opposed to using the KOs on the ends, so really they weren't vaportight in their application but they were used in a sheltered location anyways).

I should be able to get the KO covers for the ends and the latches should be cheap enough where I can buy those but I might have to wait on the diffusers. I'll see what the second company gives me for a price on the diffusers and see what's cheaper. $19 each isn't bad but they're 4ft long so I'd imagine shipping is probably just as much and unless they can combine shipping, I'm looking at 80 bucks (20 for one diffuser [times 2] and 20 to ship one diffuser [times 2]) and that's way out of budget for me. If it was free shipping I'd be all over those things. If they can't combine shipping I'll just get one diffuser and buy the second at another time down the road, since I don't need the diffusers in the near future. I've always wanted a vaportight fluorescent though, since I've grown up seeing them at pretty much any camp I've gone to in Boy Scouts (well, major camps where you either stay overnight for a week or day camps and some bigger camps that have mess halls [cafeterias]).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 10, 2014, 10:34:01 PM
I have a pair that are nice thick metal and would have originally had prismatic-12 diffusers like you usually see on troffers and wraparounds.  They were already missing those and the ballast channel covers by the time I got them and had perfect-looking October 1980 .80 amp Advance Kool-Koil post-PCB ballasts that didn't work sadly.   There's pics in my gallery on LG. http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?album=2349&pos=5&pid=86927

and


http://www.lighting-gallery.net/gallery/displayimage.php?album=2350&pos=12&pid=86932


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 11, 2014, 10:53:15 AM
Oh wow, never seen vaportights quite like that before. Mine are just the classic fiberglass & cryic enclosure that you mount a standard 2-lamp F40/RS (or F32T8) strip inside.

BTW, the people who gave me the $19/diffuser quote also gave me a shipping quote. Shipping is $30 and they can put up to four diffusers in the box, so it's $30 shipping for one or two diffusers. So If I get two, I save 30 bucks. So for two diffusers, I'd spend about $70 with shipping. Kind of a lot of money, but I'm waiting to see what the other comapny says. For the other company, I'm definitely getting the six latches from them since I can't find them elsewhere. I'll get the diffusers from whoever is cheaper. I'll probably buy the two diffusers with Chrismas money, since I have no other way of getting that kind of cash. Finding a job hasn't turned out well so far. :( I don't think the latches will be that much. Hopefully no more than a couple bucks a piece. They're just small plastic latches, so they should be like 50 cents each IMO but I find that replacement parts tend to be overpriced.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 12, 2014, 12:14:50 PM
They always are.  The one I hate losing is the little "keeper" thing that holds the channel cover on most any Lithonia striplight. 
I like those 2XF40 and 2XF96 strips, though I know a lot of people find them boring.  In general I like fixtures where the lamps are exposed (shoplights, striplights, and of course turrets! (don't have a turret yet though). 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 13, 2014, 08:33:05 PM
Little keeper things? Do you mean those quart-turn clips? I dislike those in general. Seems like a cheesy way of holding the channel on. I prefer wingnuts (though those are really easy to loose) or those spring-loaded clips that you pull and turn 90-degrees.

I don't really like strip lights. It's not because their boring though. It's because they're so utilitarian looking with all the KOs and slots and holes. I like older strips that have a cleaner appearance. IMO, modern strip lights only serve as good frankenfixtures lol (to use to make other fixtures, like vaportights, sign backlighting, etc). When strips are surface mounted to a finished ceiling I think they're best with a regular channel cover but whe strips are suspended I think they look much better with a reflector, though my grandpa has a bunch of slimline strips with no reflectors. The spraybooth room has the lights surface-mounted though (and has surface-mount conduit too since it's a concrete ceiling IIRC)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 13, 2014, 09:21:18 PM
Yeah those little 90 degree turn clips.  I ignore all the slots, knockouts, etc. though they sure do have a lot of them! I like ceiling mounted strips.  I like the 2X ones the best over the 1X ones but both are neat.  My school has some half-reflector, half-channel-cover Lithonia strips wall-mounted in the main hallway of the '84 wing.  One I saw even has a handwritten UL tag (volts and amps) like on my Lithonia 2XF96.  Someday if they come down I'd take at least one for sure, given the opportunity of course. 
I know of a disconnected 2XF40 strip in someone's falling-down shed that has a pair of F40CW Westy blackender lamps and the little "wings" on the endplates like your 1973 shoplight, though it has a standard strip channel cover.  I'm going to try to get it. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 14, 2014, 03:47:10 PM
I like both the single and double lamp strips too but prefer the doubles except for the shorter lamps. For under 4ft, I prefer single lamp. 4ft+ I can go either way. Ever seen a more-than-two-lamp strip? Those 4-lamp 8ft strips Darren has are really cool. Cooper Metalux still makes four lamp strips too as far as I know. Wings? Do you mean wingnuts?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 14, 2014, 06:24:18 PM
BTW, Andy, do your vaportights look  like this?  (http://www.lithonia.com/commercial/vdc-vds.html#.VGaO1PnF_Z1) If so, they're actually rough-service lights, not vaportights, which makes sense since they're metal.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 14, 2014, 10:29:29 PM
I think a single lamp 8ft slimline would be really cool. Yeah those lights Darren has are really cool!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 14, 2014, 10:49:18 PM
I've actually never seen a single lamp 8ft slimline or HO in person. The longest single lamp fixture I've seen was 6ft. I've never seen a two-lamp F30T12 either nor have I seen any F48T12 slimline fixture (though I've seen F48T12/HO).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 16, 2014, 02:15:15 PM
Neither have I, at least that I can think of. 
I think if you save that 8ft HO from your grandpa's shop you should make a point of taking a slimline too if he sells the place.  You'll be glad you did.  I'm glad I inquired about mine, and I have been enjoying it ever since.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 16, 2014, 04:17:50 PM
Hopefully he holds onto the place long enough for me to save an 8ft HO (I'll need to be in my own place, which might not be for another 10 years). Maybe I'd get a slimline. I'd rather have an HO though since they're more interesting IMO. I wouldn't mind a slimline though. Maybe even get a vaportight enclosure for it to make it more interesting. ;D My biggest thing with the 8ft fixtures though, is that I don't have any rooms in my house where an 8ft fixture would look normal lol. Sure, they'd fit in most rooms in my house (albeit barely) but they'd look very unnatural in the rooms since the rooms where I coudl put them (garage, laundry room, utility room) are small and a 4ft fixture is plenty. Garage is the best bet and my dad said no more fixtures out there after all the holes we had to drill to find studs above the drywall lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 16, 2014, 06:00:19 PM
I know what you mean about them being unnaturally long.  I was just looking today and I could fit two 8ft slimlines end-to-end in my entryway but it would look strange for sure.  But hey, it'd be bright compared to two 13w 5000K spiral CFLs.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 16, 2014, 07:47:47 PM
Ah I don't have an entryway since I live in a raised ranch. With a raised ranch, the set up is like the pic below. The front door is on a landing between two sets of stairs. One set going up to the "living space" and the other going down into the (typically finished) basement.

We have a five-lamp chandelier over out staircase that we pretty much never use (good thing because I don't know how the heck we're supposed to change the lamps when they burn out lol). It has all five original lamps to the house.

(http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/d6/d4/ed/d6d4ed7b966627c66dd277f81522a940.jpg)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 17, 2014, 12:01:49 AM
I've been in houses like that before. 
I was given another pre-1992 GE F20T12/CW in a LOA resistive ballasted fixture.  The fixture doesn't work but the (well used) lamp works fine in the Lithonia 2XF20T12 striplight I have, alongside an identical lamp.  This one needs cleaning and a posting on LG for dating though, but not tonight.  I also was given a 22w circline electronic Keystone ballast (haven't tested yet), and a 22w lamp with such.  I can't say what the color is for sure...slightly warmer than 4100K but cooler than 3500K I think.  I like it, it's much brighter than the 22w halophosphate cool white I had in my bedroom ceiling light's GE "Circlite 75" adapter before and the CRI is better.  I will leave it there for now.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on November 17, 2014, 09:41:52 AM
BTW, Andy, do your vaportights look  like this?  (http://www.lithonia.com/commercial/vdc-vds.html#.VGaO1PnF_Z1) If so, they're actually rough-service lights, not vaportights, which makes sense since they're metal.
Ahh so these are a Lithonia product, I've seen single lamp versions of these used occasionally on the TTC subway and I've been wondering who the heck made them lol.  


Ah I don't have an entryway since I live in a raised ranch. With a raised ranch, the set up is like the pic below. The front door is on a landing between two sets of stairs. One set going up to the "living space" and the other going down into the (typically finished) basement.

We have a five-lamp chandelier over out staircase that we pretty much never use (good thing because I don't know how the heck we're supposed to change the lamps when they burn out lol). It has all five original lamps to the house.

Interesting, that layout reminds me of those split level houses that were common back in the 1970s over here. My house is sorta like a split level since the den is halfway between the first and second floors. Technically it's over the garage lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 17, 2014, 09:58:44 PM
@ Andy; Hmm if you bust the LOA apart, I think the two chokes are regular 14-20W chokes that can be used to run shorter lamps on preheat unless that's what failed. That color temperature sounds interesting. Smaller manufacturers probably mix leftover phosphors together and their "friday afternoon" lamps have odd color temperatures and such and aren't as uniform as their lamps normally are.

@ Joe; Maybe there are other manufacturers who make/made this fixture at one point or another but yeah, I've seen these before too, though older F40/RS ones with yellowed lenses anda greenish color to the lamps (and with loads of dead bugs too!)

My middle school from 1970 is a split level building. It's two floors with a tiny 3rd floor above the library with a few rooms. The 3rd floor had a balcony that overlooked the library, so the library technically didn't have a ceiling over most of the center. That third floor was "off limits" to 99% of the students though. I think the special needs rooms were located up there. The gymnasium, main offices, and auditorium were on the second floor of the lower half of the split level (at ground level from the front of the building and on the second floor from the back entrance). Below the gym and offices is the cafeteria and the music rooms. There's also a bomb shelter that is repurposed as a stockroom. The cafeteria is at ground level at the back entrance and below the ground from the front of the building.

Then on the higher half of the split level, the science and "unified arts" classes were on the lower level, which was at ground level from the rear and underground from the front. The upstairs had all the "core classes" and the library. The lower level of the higher side of th split level also had all the utilities (furnace, circuitbreakers, janitor lounge, etc).  Here's a shot of the school from above.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@41.7750327,-71.476844,143m/data=!3m1!1e3?hl=en)   You can see how the land is sloped, burying the front half of the lower level.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@41.774907,-71.4759177,3a,65.2y,283.53h,83.06t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sedk1k3TDa6naWveq3Aw2Kg!2e0?hl=en)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 17, 2014, 10:10:37 PM
It's a resistive-ballasted thing like the GE "BrightStick".  Maybe.  I sure like the color though.  I'd initially hoped/suspected it was a Daylight or 5000K lamp but I like this color too. 
Joe, I've seen 70s houses like what you describe.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 19, 2014, 07:02:33 AM
Oh so it's a newer LOA? I heard those are even worse than the older ones, though the older ones are known for overheating and melkted at the ends where the chokes and capacitors are. :o


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 19, 2014, 05:05:30 PM
BTW, those plugs for the conduit holes on the ends of my vaportight enclosures came in this past weekend. Free of charge too! I have a quote for the diffusers, now just waiting for a reply on the latches.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 19, 2014, 09:32:44 PM
Now you're thinking LOA shoplights I think. Those have been known for that though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 19, 2014, 10:01:54 PM
I honestly have no clue what you're talking about lol. I've heard of a GE brightstick but don't know what it is.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 20, 2014, 11:52:22 AM
It's a disposable 2ft fixture, using a resistive WIRE as the (very inefficent) ballast.  Trent (themaritimeman) was saying the very underdriven F20T12 pulls like 37 watts from the wall!  :o
Also the lamp isn't supposed to be "replaceable" either, though with some ingenuity and probably warranty-voiding it can be done.
The BrightStick came in a warm white, blacklight, and Plant & Aquarium version.  I think my LOA version might have a choke, though.  Nonetheless I'll probably chuck it after saving the power cord, and I'm using the pre-1992 GE F20T12/CW it came with in a Lithonia 2XF20T12 strip.  I'll clean it up (it's dusty) and post it this weekend for dating ID.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 20, 2014, 05:30:07 PM
Ah they sound like very poor fixtures. I'm guessing they're very cheap and that's why they sell?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 20, 2014, 08:36:17 PM
Of course!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on November 21, 2014, 12:04:45 PM
I have a GE brightstick lying around somewhere. Even though it used a cheesy resistive ballast and draws 34+w, it lasted pretty long. Mine lasted for 7 1/2 years in daily use (2-3 hours per day). It still sorta works now but it's on it's way out as it'll take 5 or more minutes for it to preheat and start up.

I remember they sold for 15-20 bucks back when they still sold them. So not much cheaper than your typical F20 trigger start strip which sells for 25 bucks here.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 21, 2014, 02:21:21 PM
Yeah if  I was making lighting choices back in the 90s I would have undoubtedly chosen a F20/TS strip or a real magnetic ballasted 4' shoplight over one of those LOA things.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 21, 2014, 02:47:32 PM
Hmm the fact that they were almost just as expensive dazzles me. I'm assuming these things are plastic too?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 21, 2014, 03:26:12 PM
Oh yeah, they're plastic.  I'll take a metal striplight or suspended industrial shoplight any day!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 22, 2014, 09:16:47 PM
I tested that thing last night after scrapping the plastic body of the fixture, with a crappy generic F15T8/CW and the thing started smoking instantly.  So I think something in there is toast.  Mine had a choke, unlike GE's version, an electronic LOA-shoplight-style starter board and a capacitor too.  I will post pics. 
I hate 3 phase and all it's different combos.  I was helping someone wire in a used generator the previous owner had wired for 3 phase and it had already taken multiple electrician-type people before us to get us that far.  It's successfully wired for single phase 120v/240v now but the output is like 103v instead of 120v.  Any idea why? (besides engine speed, we tried adjusting RPM).  I should ask Darren this.  Not that it really matters, just seems strange. 
I'm also am AM-radio "DX'er" and also do some one FM.  My area is quire rural and has one NPR radio station serving the area, that's it on FM *or so I thought, will get to that later*.  They're uniqie though, not many public radio stations play stuff like Danzing's "Mother", Skillet's "Hero", Breaking Benjamin's "Breath", gangster rap, or 60s-70s rock music at all.  They also play plenty of jazz/classical/etc. though, as well as country. 
Anyway I discovered I can (just barely) hear an FM public radio station from a town (Petersburg, AK) probably easily a hundred miles and some mountains away.  Their main advertised frequency is 100.9 MHz but I swear it was elsewhere on the dial I heard it, somewhere around 92-ish.  My dad had claimed he knew of cases of hearing that radio station around here but I had suspected that to be confused with a now-gone-silent Christian AM radio station you indeed could hear just barely on their daytime power (but covered up in "splatter" from others at night). But I guess it's true, this one is on FM.  I can only hear it in one little corner of my bedroom (where my head rests actually) with a Sony headset radio with meh reception, I now want to try something a bit...ahem...better...now.  I think it may be a weather/atmosphere related thing though, I'm trying again tonight and definately on some night that isn't cloudy.  (Which was when I heard it). 
I can hear San Francisco, CA on AM on most nights after dark too, as well as Portland and Seattle. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 23, 2014, 04:58:45 PM
Hmm no idea. I don't know anything about motors/engines. As for three-phase wiring, you can run a 120V appliance on 208V 3ph by hooking the hot wire up to one of the three phases and then running a neutral wire or connecting the applicance's neutral to ground. They did that at Seekonk Speedway with some sportslighters they added. The 400W MV cobraheads are all 208V 3ph and the sportslighters were 120V (odd, since I'd picture them being 480V, given the huge amount typically used at a sports center). Anyway, they connected the sportslighters't hots to one of the three phases and connected the neutral to ground (I think literally connecting it to a wire running into the ground). Whatever they did was done by an electrican though so it's safe, but I don't know every detail of how they did it.

Interesting that you can pick up AM signals from that far away. I've never listened to AM radio (aside from my grandpa's talk radio in his car, but even he now uses FM since the station he listens to also has an FM branch instead of AM. Am radio is "dead" here. I guess it's only advantage would be in your situation, when FM radio signals don't or barely come in.

BTW, I decided to mount a light in the backyard finally! My grandpa has been taking forever trying to get me the new pole so I just screwed the 24" mounting bracket that had been used on the old pole right into the wood scraps I added to the deck post. It holds well but the light likes to "bounce" up and down (no motion where the bracket bolts to the wood, but the light at the end of the mast bounces). And it swings side-to-side too. If it swings to much side-to-side, it could snap but it would take hurricane-force winds to do that. Not something I have to be overly concerned about. I'm thinking of swapping the glass refractor out for a plastic one to see how that goes though. I wonder how my new set up would hold up with my 320W PSMH M-400A2 mounted on it. That giant is probably around 40 pounds! Easier to install than the M-250R was though since it's a Powr/Door so the ballast can be off when it's installed as well as the glass refractor. The M-400A2 would be extremely BRRRRIGHT! I think around the brightness of a 400W probe start MH. Definitely brighter than a 400W merc. Outdoors is the only place I feel safe running my M-400A2 anyways lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 23, 2014, 08:20:38 PM
Can you draw a diagram of this? 3 phase anything goes right over my head...
Yeah it's advantageous here...since there's one local FM station and the one other I just discovered that barely comes in.  Nothing shows up on AM at my house during the day with any radio I have, only after dark.  But we had a setup on a boat that had KILLER reception for a rural area, even during the day! (same thing for FM-stereo). 
The one NPR station here does not broadcast in stereo (only mono) but whatever audio processing they use gives a unique, clean, crisp sound on mono with music.  I doubt the other one I just found does stereo (a lot of NPR stations here don't) but even if it did it comes in so weakly a tuner would never switch into the stereo mode, much less do that annoying back-and-forth stereo-mono static-quiet transition.  (Some radios/tuners are more pronouned with this than others)
(As you can tell, radio is another interest of mine)
You need a 400w HPS in your yard! LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 23, 2014, 10:09:30 PM
With three phase, there are three wires, all hots. The device (light fixture or example) is connected between two of the wires. Doesn't matter which ones as far as I know. Any two of the three wires gives you your 208V. There's no neutral involved in 208 3ph. However, if you run a neutral and connect your light fixture to the neutral and one of the three hots, you'll get 120V. Not sure how that happens but it just does.

A special transformer is used for 208V 3ph, it's a bank of three transformers like  this.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@41.779164,-71.4772277,3a,15y,258.46h,96.95t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sy6jNveAhvUgf4ygEMx9vNw!2e0?hl=en)


Hmm interesting stuff on the radio. I get a lot of stations since I live in a pretty populated area (RI is the most densly-populated state with a population of 1.052 million and an area of 1,212 sq miles).

Providence County (the most populated county in RI, where I live) has 628,600 people and is 436 sq miles in area. The population of th entire state of Alaska is 735,132 with an area of 663,300 miles! So almost the entire population of AK could fit comfortably into 435 square miles! Imagine that? :o ;D

LOL I have a 400W HPS ballast but it's like 40 pounds and is currently used as a counterweight for my bedroom light pole display. If it was in a fixture I don't think I'd be able to lift the fixture lol. I'd have to install the fixture on a metal pole and then have the pole lifted into palce with a crane (that's how metal poles are installed anyways, but I'd make sure to install the fixture on the pole ahead of time lol. If the ballast goes bad, just do a rednect fix and bypass the ballast and install a 105W mogul based CFL in the fixture lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 24, 2014, 09:30:47 PM
Where I lived in CA was decently populated too, lots of stations.  Here's all the radio stations you could supposedly hear from where I lived.  http://radio-locator.com/cgi-bin/locate?select=city&city=Atascadero&state=CA&band=Both&is_lic=Y&is_cp=Y&is_unl=Y&is_fl=Y&is_fx=Y&is_fb=Y&format=&dx=2&radius=&freq=&sort=freq&sid=

KGO-AM (810 MHz) and KNBR-AM (680MHz) are both listenable here at night, multiple states away, provided you aren't too close to a CFL...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 24, 2014, 10:31:32 PM
Interesting site.  Here's the stations that are with my zip code. (http://radio-locator.com/cgi-bin/locate?select=city&city=02921&state=RI&x=0&y=0)

I usually listen to 94.1 FM.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 24, 2014, 11:20:14 PM
Yeah you have like 63 "distant" stations.  I moved that to "fringe" and it jumped to over 100.  That's more than where I lived in CA! (and still visit sometimes). 
Here's what my dial officially looks like here, but I can say there's a lot more on AM at night, none of the aforementioned during the day, and that one other FM one, whose parent station is KFSK-FM of Petersburg, AK. 
http://radio-locator.com/cgi-bin/locate?select=city&city=Port+Alexander&state=AK&band=Both&is_lic=Y&is_cp=Y&is_unl=Y&is_fl=Y&is_fx=Y&is_fb=Y&format=&dx=2&radius=&freq=&sort=freq&sid=


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 25, 2014, 02:52:36 PM
Wow not much out there! I guess that's where iTunes and CDs come in handy lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 30, 2014, 06:54:21 PM
As do SiriusXM, music channels on DirecTV, and Pandora!
I was talking to someone and might be scoring a vintage stereo tuner/amp as a result...we'll see. 
I went to a junk store last week and got a NOS Philips FC8T9/DX, complete with sleeve.  (Are daylight circlines rare?), a Sylvania/GTE F15T8/BLB, also NOS and complete with sleeve,  and two generations of Sylvania 60w bug lights, complete with packages.  Stuff I passed up: switches/receptacles/faceplates, a Sylvania F30T12/CW with sleeve, a pair of rainbow *yes, really!* F40s, some low-wattage Sylvania HPS lamps still in their boxes (don't remember what wattage), A GE Grow & Show lamp still in box, a couple clear A19s, that sort of thing.  Also the person I went with got some christmas lights, too.  Another classic case of great music playing in secondhand/reuseit stores too. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on November 30, 2014, 07:07:54 PM
Hmm not sure. Circlines are rare here. I've only ever seen those LOA adapters, which typically have CW or WW lamps. Never seen any other color temperature for circline. Personally, I'm not a big circline fan. They're cool but I'm just not into them. I don't love u-bends but I guess they're alright... Don't like those newer 2ft long PL lamps found in troffers though. I like linear lamps best and I like PLs for recessed cans.

rainbow F40s? :o Never seen such a thing! Were the HPS medium or mogul base? I strung my Christmas lights today. Nice and warm here today, in the 50s. Didn't need to wear a jacket.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on November 30, 2014, 07:16:42 PM
Yeah it's sure unique having the above lamp in service in a GE "Circlite 75" adapter which would have originally had a /730 "Kitchen & Bath" triphosphor lamp and had an Ace (GE) cool white lamp when I got it.  It's rather dim though compared to that weird Keystone lamp I had in there before and probably even the Ace CW.  (910 lumens? Doesn't seem like that to me!).  I like the color but it's almost TOO blue, though it's well suited to a bedroom with Scotch-blue-painters'-tape-blue walls. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 01, 2014, 06:31:06 PM
Yeah daylight is too blue for me in a lot of applications. I like the light given off by them but the lamps themselves are too blue lol. My only daylight lamps are F14T12 and F40T12, and I have a very limited number of them.

My local ReStore has some NOS GE warm white circline lamps. I think FC30T9 size. Didn't get any since I don't need any circline lamps and I'm not a fan of WW lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 01, 2014, 09:14:37 PM
Are your Lifelines a soft, bluish hue but not terribly bright? Are they "light blue" to look at directly? Modern 6500K CFLs seem whiter than this circline I have.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 01, 2014, 10:07:32 PM
I haven't lit any daylight lamps recently. I have one F40/D lifeline and I remember it being slighly greenish to look at, like an aqua color. It's a lower CRI one from the late 60s. My F40/DX Altos that are in my great-aunt's 8ft preheater are a light blue color from what I remember. Other than those three F40s I have three F14T12/CW lamps, two NOS Sylvania's from 2005 I thinka nd a well-used but working GE from 1956. I like the daylight more in the F14 size. WW and D look better in shorter low-brightness fixtures IMO. Bigger fixtures like F40s and F96s used for general room lighting are better with 3500K or 5000K. Of course any fixture is OK with cool white if someone wants to play it safe but CW is a little boring after a while.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 02, 2014, 11:14:09 AM
"Play it safe"...LOL
I passed on a 1950s F14/W at a Restore since it would have had to travel out of state and I was a little concerned thus about zinc beryelium phosphors in my suitcase.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 02, 2014, 06:40:04 PM
Yeah a lot of times electricians stock 4100K in their vans as a one-type-fits-all sort of thing lol.

Aw man I would have still tried to take it. Wrap it in a little bubble wrap and it'll be fine. How were you transporting the suitcase?  Were you personally carrying it, having someone load it onto a boat, or was it sorted mechanically to go on an airplane? I bet airlines would flip out and go crazy and not let you bring a fluorescent lamp on the plane though lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 02, 2014, 09:25:56 PM
I went for the Westy F20T12/CW silverender instead, which first went from ReStore to my house there at the time, in the backseat of a car, on everything from merging onto the freeway to a bumpy dirt road, then into three cardboard poster mailer tubes spliced together, into a suitcase with clothes on all sides, then a 4 hour drive to the San Jose airport, then banged and smashed around there, in Seattle, and in Sitka, AK, where I reclaimed it, then it spent a couple weeks on a boat driving around to various places (suitcase even falling on it's side a few times in rougher seas) until I finally got a chance to get it to my house here (It was one of the first things that went home). 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 03, 2014, 07:01:56 AM
Wow that lamp went on quite a journey to get where it is today! Very cool! Yeah those tubes are strong in some ways and weak in others. I guess it all depends on the direction of the impact.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 03, 2014, 12:00:45 PM
I know a case of a 4' lamp (a 1988 Philips F40CW BTW) falling out of one of those 70s-80s illuminated ceilings in a kitchen (in the house I spend most of my childhood in), evenly hitting the linoluem floor and not breaking.  I think it hit evenly enough though.
I've never broken a lamp in transit, though the postal office managed to destroy some glass insulators of mine. (Wow, how ironic!)


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 03, 2014, 04:57:05 PM
I've broken a newer non-Alto Philips F15T12 soft white lamp back when I was just getting into fluorescent lights. It was in it's sleeve so most of the broke glass stayed in the sleeve. One of the endcaps flew an incredible 10+ feet though! :o Could have gone further if it didn't hit the wall lol. I've intentionally broken dead incandescents before (for no reason really, just to break them. They were modern incandescents and were already dead anyway). Just kinda fun to drop them base-up from around 6ft to a cement floor lol. I did it once and the lamp actually bounced off the floor once and when it hit the floor the second time it burst into a million pieces. I guess the first time, the lamp was angled just right so at the initial impact, it wasn't quite enough to shatter the glass but the second time did the lamp in.

I've ruined two 400W Mv lamps though. Both were diffused/coated (not phospohor coated) ED28 cram lamps made by PlusRite (same size as 175 and 250W lamps, but with a longer neck for the 400W arc tube). The first one I screwed in too much and the center contact got pushed up into the screw shell of the base lol. The second time I had melted a refractor on it (by accident of course, remember that incident with the couch and the Formed Plastics lens?) The lamp still worked but I chipped off some of the glass (not punctured it, but chipped off some of it on the surface) and I didn't want to risk the envelope shattering, as HID lamps can shatter while running if the outer glass is chipped or scratched because the glass can't handle expanding and contracting when the lamp heats up or cools down. So after the third lamp (got the second PlusRite free, claiming the base glue was defective so they sent a new replacement free, the one I got melted refractor all over lol).

So I decided to buy a different brand, hoping maybe I'd have better luck, so I bought the 400W /DX Sylvania ED37 full-size MV lamp that I still have today (made in 2010). It's a Chinese Sylvania lamp (all Sylvania mercs after the early-to-mid 2000s have been made in china. In the late-90s through early/mid-2000s Sylvania had their MV lamps made by Philips and GE. I have a 175W Sylvania /DX lamp made by GE from 2000). And ironically I haven't had any more things happen to the new lamp lol. Of course the M-400 split door that I bought the lamp for (my only 400W Mv fixture) is in the shed and has been for probably a year or two now. The OV-25 remote ballast and the M-400A2 are in the shed too along with the 1963 M-400, which is in the shed until Marco picks it up (he doesn't seem too eager to come and get it since I've had it since early August lol).



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 03, 2014, 10:11:52 PM
I remember both the F15T12 explosion and refractor/couch meltdown...Do you still have the second PlusRite?
I scored a 50w HPS lamp today, any ideas to light it? I'm thinking a 40w LPF RS ballast or a single lamp F32T8 electronic one, with a piezoelectric lighter ignitor to start it. Or maybe a couple 14/15/20/22w chokes in paralell...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2014, 03:20:14 PM
Nope, didn't keep either PlusRite.

NO!!! Don't use a F40 ballast because you'll destroy the lamp. F40s have double the arc voltage of a 50W HPS. A HPS would probably run off three F20 chokes but you won't be able to light it without an igniter. (You could probably use a BBQ igniter if you have one).

To be honest, I'd just buy a 50W HPS ballast if I were you. HPS lamps are very sensitive to not being driven properly. The arc tube will overheat and leak sodium, making the inside of the outer glass mirrored and the lamp won't work.  Here's a very cheap HPS ballast you can buy that will allow you to run the HPS. The kit comes with the ballast, mounting bracket, and igniter. (https://www.1000bulbs.com/product/6012/BS-LU0050120.html)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 04, 2014, 08:41:07 PM
Okay I'll keep that in mind.  But what about running an F40T12 lamp in series (or at least an F20?). 
I tried one 14/15/20w choke just for grins and giggles tonight and no luck.  I tried using a lighter next to it (yes, really, and yes a jug of water was handy, as was a fire extinguisher) with the idea the piezoelectric ignitor might jump it to life.  No luck yet.  I'm going to try two or three chokes in paralell but how would I wire that?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 04, 2014, 08:46:44 PM
I don't know how you'd go about wiring them in parallel. :-\ You won't be able to light the lamp without an igniter though. You can actually install a HPS lamp in an incandescent fixture and it would be safe because the lamp can't strike without an igniter to kick-start the lamp.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 04, 2014, 10:21:08 PM
And most people would think it was defective.
I also tried that setup in front of a 27" CRT television thinking the static electricity would help (I've gotten fluorescents to glow in front of it) but no luck.  How would I wire an ignitor anyway? (I intend to try one of those SIDAC things from a LOA 2ft fixture, basically the same as those weird 4' shoplights).  I think those give a pretty decent HV pulse...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 05, 2014, 10:32:12 PM
If you buy a HPs ballast kit, it comes with the ballast, igniter, and mounting bracket. All you need is the lamp, socket, wire nuts, and a cord. :P ;D Plus it'll run the lamp as-intended. If you do get the lamp to light up, don't be alarmed if the arc tube gets really silvery on the ends. That's just sputtering from being driven improperly. The arc tube will clear up after running on the proper ballast for a solid hour or two (like mercuy deposits on a fluorescent in a way).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 06, 2014, 06:48:53 PM
I was thinking it might sputter too.  I haven't had a chance to play around with it anymore so far this weekend. 
Can blackening from abuse clear up on fluorescents too? I swear I've had it happen. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 06, 2014, 09:42:47 PM
I believe sputtering can be cleared off if the lamp is being underdriven a lot and blackens on the end. Sometimes slightly overdriving the lamp and running it for a few hours "burns off" that little bit of blackening. With trigger start and rapid start fixtures, underdriven lamps do not sputter because of the constant heating. As long ad the ends are sufficiently heated, there won't be sputtering. Generally, when the lamp is underdriven a lot, the ends aren't adequately heated. Sputtering can be bad for the lamp though over a longer period of time. The constant heating on a RS/TS ballast allows lamps to be underdriven without affecting their lifespan.


BTW, organized two more shelves on my late-grandpa's 6-shelf storage rack. Lots random parts for stuff they don't even have anymore. I tossed out tow heaping trash cans' worth (the small trash cans about 2ft tall that are about the size of a paper shredder's basket.) of crap. Lots and lots of hardware, screws, washers, nuts. He virtually had his own TrueValue franchise in his basement lol. Anyway, I found a good amount of electrical goodies too, which I plan to eventually take home. A 2-gang metal junction box, a few old work single gang metal boxes, one single gang cast-aluminum junction box (before PVC boxes came out i guess), a bag of romex staples, a bag of dozens of vintage wallplates (the really thick ones with decorative designs on them, both brown/black and almond), some romex clamps, three boxes of wirenuts (one orange, one black, and the other box had old-school wirenuts that were really terminal blocks with a black plastic cap that screws on over the terminal. Those are from the 60s or 70s). A couple of wire-on ungrounded male plugs too as well as fuses, pull-chain string, etc. All kinds of goodies down there that I'll eventually scoop up along with those vintage 100W lamps.

So almost three shelves down, three to go. (didn't quite finish the third shelf, have to dust it off and then organize the stuff and then put some of the stuff from the electrical & hardware shelf that doesn't belong on the third shelf.) In reality, if the bottom shelf is #1 and top is #6, I've organized Shelf # 5 (light bulbs), Shelf #4 (oils, chemicals, etc; caulking; putty; paint brushes, rollers, and stirring sticks; and miscellaneous stuff), and Shelf #3 (electrical supplies; hardware, such as screws, nails, washers, nuts, hooks, etc). Shelf #6 only has a few things on it, such as wall paper and other stuff. It's over by head so I'll need a step-stool to do that one. Shelf #1 is all paintcans I think, but I haven't dug into it yet. I forget what shelf #2 is. I think more paint.

Next week I'll finish Shelf #4 (oils, chemicals, etc; caulking; putty; paint brushes, rollers, and stirring sticks; and miscellaneous stuff) which I haven't finished organizing yet. And I'll also try to clean Shelf #2. I should buy a few cheap disposable particulate respirators since there's a TON of dust down there and my thoat gets dry, I start sneezing, my eyes water, and my skin itches after being down there since i'm allergic to dust. I'll make labels for the shelves when I'm done too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 07, 2014, 04:26:09 PM
I had a dream I managed to get it to light, at least to the blue-purple-white phase.  But still haven't messed with it.
That's pretty cool! What vintage 100w lamps? Is this at the auto shop? If so did you relamp any slimlines?
My shops (two of them) are full of stuff like that.  Take it all to ReStore! (And come back with with a 4ft preheat fixture perhaps or at least some F40 lamps).
I've had YET ANOTHER cheap LPF F40 ballast die.  Every one of those things I've ever had die at my own house or seen elsewhere fails the same way: Just heating cathodes, that's it.  I'd say bad capacitor but LPF ballasts don't really have that.  This one failed while it was on, too: I found it later, just lighting cathodes and buzzing very loudly on the MSW inverter electricity it was running on at the time.  I think it's an Advance "Benchlite" judging by the same identical shoplights I've opened up in the past (I've had several from other places, and this one came with my house.  I wonder if being out of use, or with bad lamps, accelerates this? This one was out of use for at least eight years while the house was unoccupied, and even the most recently used one I had had been about 3 or 4 years.  After maybe a couple hundred hours being used again they all seem to do this.  Another one I had do this was a LPF MagneTek.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 07, 2014, 07:06:27 PM
No my late-grandpa's basement (where the T17 preheater desk fixture is). They've got some older incandescent lamps. No, I'm not taking anything to the ReStore. Even if I did, they don't do "trades". You donate stuff (don't get paid) or you can buy stuff. In fact, the ReStore has a crapload of NOS 70s wallplates too. Pretty cool selection too of all different gang sizes. My grandpa's faceplates are all single-gang for one switch or one receptacle.

I wonder if the inverter electricity is killing the NPF ballasts. :-\ Those Advance Benchlite ballasts are garbage anyway. I heard that they tend to fail that way, only heating the ends. Those have the lowest ballast factor I've ever seen. I thought my benchlite ballast was failed when I lit it up because it was so dim. It was useless. The two F40s were about as effective as one full-power F20T12, which is pretty rediculous IMO. I just chopped off the leads and tossed it since I can always put the leads to good use in another fixture.

Only capacitor-containing ballasts have the potential of being affected by not being used for years. A reactor (preheat choke) or a reactance (trigger start or rapid start) ballast with no capacitor should not be affected since it's just a coil of wire. I think it's just a coincidence. Those ballasts are crap anyways. You need some nice HPF ballasts, even if they're energy-saving HPF. :D I'd be willing to send you a HPF F40/RS ballast for the cost of shipping (it probably wouldn't be much. If I put it in a flat-rate box it would only be like $10) if you have a mailing address. With a flat-rate box, I can cram other stuf in there too. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 07, 2014, 08:52:51 PM
Is that T17 light still there? If so did you fire it up while down in that basement? I assume you're still cleaning the place out after he passed?
I know ReStore doesn't do trades, I just mean since you're going there anyway.  Collections grow fast, so I like getting rid of stuff that's useless to me but coming away with more goodies.  For example, I might take that 50w HPS lamp in and donate it, and buy some F40 lamps or something...
That's a good thought actually! I've never known anything I've had to fry on MSW though I've heard bad stories about that from other people.  One in particular told me every vacuum tube guitar amp they ever had was killed by a MSW inverter!
I've had other magnetic ballasts do fine on MSW though, I have 70s PCB HPF ballasts used every day for long hours, often on MSW.  (One in particular being that first Sears shoplight with a tar-leaked Bonusline).  It's pretty quiet too, even for MSW! That thermal-cutout-tripping Advance won't get hot enough to trip on MSW (That's weird, stuff runs hotter if anything).  My 8' slimline doesn't like to start on it though (80s-90s Advance full power, non-PCB "brick"). 
Those LPF ballasts are pretty lousy though, I have to agree.  The older ones especially suck since you can't run 34 watt lamps on them, which in my experience eases the crappieness off a bit (They're brighter actually!).   
I did once see some Lithonia "basket" wraparounds in a welding/diesel mechanic's shop with CWX lamps that were literally about as bright as a dim-glowing HPF! (But clearly not EOL.).  That place also had some nice F40 turrets.
They aren't that bad when warmed up IMO but still pretty dang dim compared to something HPF.  Where'd you hear they fail like this? Seen it happen too?
Okay, here's one then: How about having a 400w M59 MH ballast (I think CWA, never opened the highbay head it's in) produce a crazy 'arcing' or 'crackling' sound for the first 30 seconds or so after being plugged in for the first time in AT LEAST a decade? After that it was fine. (And has been ever since in albeit-occasional use.)
I need to find some HPF stuff for sure.  I'm thinking every LPF ballast that dies will probably be converted to electronic T8 (I know, I know, but still.)  They don't flicker when cold (a HUGE plus, since many of my lights are in unheated places), don't make obnoxious noise on MSW inverter electricity, and don't flicker with generators that have hertz/cycles issues (One of mine does).  But nothing will match the reliability of magnetic.
What would it be? a MagneTek? Advance? Universal?



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 08, 2014, 05:30:40 PM
Yep T17 is still up, both at my great-aunt's house any my late-grandpa's basement. The latter only has one lamp and starter since two lamps was too much light for my grandpa's purposes. I haven't touched the T17s yet, mostly because I lack the room to store them. Right now my dad is the scoutmaster for my little brothers cub scout pack but when my brother crosses over the boy scouts in late winter or early spring, my dad will resign from being the scoutmaster (per tradition) and all those boxes of stuff will be gone, so I'll have more storage space in the shed and utility room. The whole top rack in the shed will open up so when that happens, I can go nuts and replace the T17 and Western Electric fixtures in my grandma/late-grandpa's house lol. I'll buy some used IST8 wrap lights at the ReStore to replace the three Western Electric F40s in the garage and might use F32T8 wraps to replace the F20 Western Electrics too, that way my great-aunt's fluorescents are only F32T8s instead of both sizes. I could actually probably get away with replacing one of the F20s with a pull-chain incandescent...

Nah I want to keep the wallplates since I like the vintage ones. I'd like to buy some of the *hundreds* of NOS vintage wallplates at the REStore too but I have bigger fish to catch (T8 fixtures to replace T12 fixtures and T12 fixtures, either to keep in the collection or strip for their ballasts and sockets). Maybe those Benchlite ballasts are just super unhappy on inverter power. Those things are just the worse ballasts ever made, and they overheat with anything other than full-wattage F40s. I'm sure the F40s would virtually last forever though, being driven that low with the cathode heating.

I have an older 1960s single lamp NPF F40 strip with a Universal ballast. It's a F30/40 ballast though so it underdrives F40s, but it's an older ballast so it's a keeper lol. Really old NPF fluorescent ballasts actually ran the lamps at full power, so not all NPF ballasts are low ballast factor. All HID ballasts drive the lamps at 1.0 BF. Underdriving typically isn't good and over driving is very bad for HIDs. With HID, ballast factor differences aren't really needed since with HIDs, you can just use a lower/higher wattage lamp whereas with fluorescents, a higher wattage lamp usually means longer lamp. I still don't like different ballast factors. I wish all fluorescent ballasts just ran the lamps at 1.0 BF. New style T5 ballasts normally do. Yeah T12 lamps are rather dim on T8 ballasts, especially those with low balalst factor. CWX lamps don't help the brightness level either lol.


Umm... For the MH high bay, I'd seriously open it, since there could have actually been an arc inside that welded itself during the first 30 seconds of power. No offense, but why would you power it up without first inspecting the inside of the fixture lol? For all you know, mice could be living inside the fixture lol.  If it's multi-tap then it's safe to say it's CWA. High-bay ballasts are almost always CWA unless they're single-tap 277 (for MH) or single-tap 240V (for MV or 20-400W HPS), in which case they're usually reactors with power factor correcting capacitors. My six Holophane highbays originally had 277v single tap 400W MH/MV reactor ballasts which were replaced with 277V 350W PSMH reactor ballasts. It's too bad the ballasts weren't multi-tap or I could have kept the original ballasts. I only kept one of the original ballasts. I'll eventually need to buy some 350W PSMH ballasts (and maybe one 400W MH/MV ballast since they were originally 400w MH).

Yeah to be honest, I like magnetic ballasts for their tank-like performance but electronic ballasts provide flicker-free light. The flicker thing is even present on normal 60Hz grid-power, but is much more noticable (at least IMO) on rapid start than on preheat. I don't mind the noise though. I do not like electronic T12s though. They just seem "weird" like something is wrong lol. Lik e with HID, I associate T12 lamps with the buzz of a magnetic ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 08, 2014, 08:48:35 PM
Oh yeah, that'll be cool to get those.  But at the same time it's cool seeing vintage lights in use elsewhere.  What do you intend to replace that T17 with anyway? Just 2XF32T8 or something? For comparable brigntness I'd think you'd need a 3-lamper or something.  But I'm not all that familiar with T17s either LOL.
Yeah then you can start replacing as you find other lights to replace.  Even the "Benchlite" type shoplights can be converted to T8 and I'd keep the cheap LPF ballasts anyway, anything magnetic and T12 is worth keeping IMO.  
And they'll probably like the brighter 4' fixtures where 2' ones were, or just use single lamp fixtures.  Either modern ones or older-but-nothing-special ones, just refitted to T8.  (Again, KEEP even the crappiest single lamp LPF ballasts!).  That's better than pullchains, I personally find it's one of my pet peeves when (especially 4') fluorescents get replaced with incandescent (Well, nowadays, spiral CFL) pullchains.
Those ballasts spend plenty of time on pure-sine-wave power too, one of my generators produces power almost the same as utility power except when very heavily loaded, (Which it is right now, the Philips FC8T9/DX on a preheat ballast is noticeably flickering as I type).
I remember that light...I bet a 25w "shoplite" lamp would be happy on that one too.  Probably even a 34 but heat-test that first please!
I feel like I always hear (well, read) people saying the LPF shoplight ballasts kill lamps fast but I never see that UNLESS it's misinserted with one pin sticking out, which Mr.  Handy Homeowner often manages to do.  (Another major pet peeve of mine!). Granted, I've done it too but when the lamp only dim-glowed, rectified, or was hard-starting I fixed it immediately.  Some 1988 Philips F40CWs (like the one in one of the basement preheat fixture's you're getting one by one) at the house I grew up  in were still going strong 25 years later in January 2014 last I was there.  I bet they're still there, at least in the garage (I bet the 80s illuminated ceiling in the kitchen is gone/will be gone; those are "out" of style).
Although I like those sort of setups in kitchens actually! It's kinda nostalgic, since I grew up around several of them.   Another factor for nostalgia is at least one spent, rectifying lamp in one of those on the LPF ballasts the shoplights above the translucent panels always had. Ever seen a setup like that?
I like the 1.0 BF idea too, but I like ballasts that run more than one lamp type (14/15/20/22, 25/34/40, F48, F72, F96, that sort of thing).  


You've got me thinking about opening it up now.  I didn't think of that at the time, and it's been fine for about three years since them every time I've fired it up. It will still do it sometimes though as the lamp ignites, which sometimes takes a few seconds.  If I had a decent way to record it, I'd make a recording of how it sounds.  As far as that goes, I'd like to make a compilation of the sounds of all my various ballasts. Not sure why it makes that sound, but hey, slimline ballasts "thump" when turned on! (It scares you when you turn on multiple fixtures on one switch and they all thump at once, then start "chattering" with cold 60w ES lamps. 
I know the flicker thing, I see it all the time, but things like /950 lamps make it much worse.  I really notice it with the LPF shoplight ballasts and 40w lamps.  HPF not so much, but still.  HIDs are really noticeable too.
I like the electronic T12s, particularly electronic T12 slimlines.  (no flicker and "chattering" sound if 60w lamps are used in a chilly place). 
On a side note, it looks like we scored a 40kW diesel genset (literally given to us).  It needs help though, namely a bad piston.  It's the very one that would have once powered the Metalux/Gibson 4' troffers I have. 





Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 09, 2014, 04:42:28 PM
It's cool to see vintage fluorescents in use but much better to save them and be certain they won't get scrapped. :D The fixture that the Benchlite ballast came in will replace the T17 over my late-grandpa's desk. I punched an extra hole in the fixture to allow a HPF-sized IST8 ballast to fit so it's got a residential GE F32T8 instant start ballast and will have two of the 2006 GE SPX35 F32T8s from my school. Since he only used one F90T17 lamp, the 2X F32T8 will be plenty of light. The only difference is that thre won't be any louvers, just small chintzy reflector.

Nah I have no use for ballasts with poor ballast factor and like you said, collections grow fast so I want to save room for the good stuff. I keep a few on hand to run F30s or F14s and F15s though.

I don't think my great-aunt would care if I replaced the 2ft fixtures with 4ft ones lol. She probably won't mind a pullchain incandescent replacing the pull-chain F20 Western Electric fixture either. I'll just stick a 100W incandescent in it. The only thing she's picky on is that NO CFLs can be use lol. She hates them with a passion.

Well shoplite ballasts (LOA, etc) do chew through lamps but NPF rapid start ballasts with lower ballast factor actually last a lot longer but once an electrode breaks, forget it, since the cathode heating is the only thing that keeps them going lol. The single lamp F40 NPF strip in my grandpa's shop runs 24/7 and and lamp doesn't have blackening and it's been in for a LONG time! Since the 90s probably, since it's cool white but not an Alto. My guess is either pre-alto Philips or Sylvania CWP from around 2000. Not a GE though since it has the Philips/Sylvania endcaps. The thing is useless though. I don't know what would be more effective, converting the fixture to F32T8 with a 1.0BF ballast (using a programmed start CFL ballast for 32W CFLs) or replacing the fixture with a new 2X F32T8 ballast. I'll probably install a new ballast and use a T8 lamp instead. I'll have to test my single lamp NPF F40 strip and see how much brighter 1.0BF F32T8 is compared to a F40T12 running at around 50-60% power lol. Although the fixture is (in my opinion) useless in terms of light output, the fixture hasn't been relamped in 10+ years and since about two years ago, has run 24/7 (before that it ran dawn-to-dusk, when my grandpa came in to work in the morning and left in early evening around 5PM or so).

It's not the original fixture to the building though. He said in the early 80s the furnace went up in flames. Thankfully he was there when it happened and was able to call the fire department. He was in the sprayroom (where is an attached single-car room where he spraypaints, which is connected to the shop room by that "hallway" where the furnace is. So in order to get into his office to call 911 (remember, no cell phones then), he had to open the garage door in the spray room and walk around the building (it's a small building though) and come back through the front. Thankfully he had his keys on him because the spray room's garage door opens toward the "backyard" of the shop, which is a fenced-in and locked area. If he didn't have his keys, he wouldn't have been able to go through the fence gate and go into the office to call the fire department, since the furnace room is the only way to leave the sprayroom besides exiting through the overhead door and going around the building. Anyway, the building is cinderblock so it wasn't badly damaged. He had to have a new furnace put in though (oil), have a new compresser (since it's right next to the furnace) get a new light fixture, and everything else in the hallway/room was lost. The bathroom shares a wall with the "hallway" and there's actually an opening at the top of the wall before it meets the ceiling about 6" to a foot large. When I removed the Harmony House fixture, the dust was exceptionally black and sooty and that's when he told me about the furnace fire back in the 80s.

Does it only make the weird noise before the arc tube stablizes and stops flickering like nuts? When Mh lamps first come on they sometimes make a GRUUUUUUU sound and the arc tube will flicker rather violently until the arc is struck.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: LampLover84 on December 10, 2014, 06:47:20 PM
I don't normally post in the off topic but I do read it
@ Mike
when you mentioned

"Does it only make the weird noise before the arc tube stablizes and stops flickering like nuts? When Mh lamps first come on they sometimes make a GRUUUUUUU sound and the arc tube will flicker rather violently until the arc is struck."

I have a 100W M90 fixture
Is it also normal for the arc tube to flash pink, blue and orange during the first few seconds of switch on? I always thought (Well to me atleast) it looks like the ignitor was still sending the 4KV pulse when the lamp flickered like that
Also how does the ignitor know when to stop  pulsing? 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 10, 2014, 11:07:15 PM
Hi LampLover,

yeah HIDs (especially MH) tend to have varying warm-ups. MHs will flash different colors at first depending on the gas mixture in the arc tube. As long as the lamp doesn't appear to "act up" once it's warmed up (though occasional flashing or split-second pink flashes are normal for MH and MV lamps).

With igniters, they look for continuity (closed circuit). When the lamp is removed or dead, the arc won't strike, therefore the circuit is not complete (no continuity) so the igniter will keep striking and striking. When the arc is struck (usually takes several attempts for low-wattage PSMH and sometimes higher-wattage PSMH too though HPS is pretty quick) the circuit is completed and the igniter senses the continuity and stops striking.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 11, 2014, 11:17:53 AM
This one's probe start, but yes, it stops after it's stabilized.
Oh cool! 35K is a nicer color to most people anyway, though I like 5000K or 6500K better :). 
But those LPF rapid start ballasts will also run a lamp (rectifying but useable I guess) for years like that. 
Exactly what year did the fire happen? The lamp/fixture should be about that old since I imagine it was repaired immediately.  Did they have to shut power off to the building during/immediately after? That's scary that he had to open that door, I feel like it would give it more air, especially and those paint fumes! At the same time it may have prevented a "flashover".  Luckily since it was cindeblock walls it would've been more or less contained unless the door to that actual room was opened (assuming it was a metal/fire-rated one). I hope the FD didn't pump the place full of dry chem, I know an incident of that and it was a real disaster to clean up after! Wanna hear that story?
At least that Harmony House preheater sure has seen a lot in it's day! It will hopefully see many more things!
Yeah even try a 34 watt lamp in the fixture...they seem brighter on LPF ballasts.  Or convert it to T8 with a SPX50 lamp!
And if you do that, be SURE to save some slimline ballasts if you convert those! If not a whole fixture, a few ballasts as spares, and a case's worth of (albeit used) lamps, especially 75w.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 12, 2014, 11:59:57 PM
One of the GE "Plant & Aquarium" pre-Eco lamps in the first Sears shoplight (the one with the Bonusline) is aging quite notiiceably, the blackening is starting to become visible even when off.  Those lamps came with my house and already had who knows how many hours on them before 2010 when we moved in. Probably 2011 before they were used/powered up even once.  They were used on and off in a cheap shoplight they were in as general lighting before I started getting dozens of F40 lamps in "real" color temps. But they've seen plenty of hours on full power ballasts in several different lights growing plants since then, which is exactly what they're doing as I type.
I ran a mini excavator for the first time today.( a Deere 35D).    Quite the experience actually, though I felt very uncoordinated as opposed to in real life where you move in a really fluid way.   I wish there was a video of it.  I probably wasn't that bad actually, just really jerky and trying to remember what did what.  Another thing crossed off my "bucket" (pardon the pun" list.  (Though I'm going back and doing more sometime). 
I managed to (sorta) dig a hole and pick up/drop some pieces of driftwood.  (Practiced on a big, open beach). 
Might be doing some wiring at a neighbors' place this weekend too. Also going for woodworking on Sunday at the very woodshop two of the Sears shoplights (the ones with LPF ballasts) and the vaportight lights that had the October 1980 Kool-Koil ballasts, the Sylvania F40/DSGN50s, and the inside etch Mainlighter (since gotten rid of, it was dead) came from.  I'm trying to do a little bit of everything.  I'm also starting a class soon to get a captain's license too!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 14, 2014, 01:01:54 PM
Ah yeah it's probably just normal MH warm-up behavior. It's also normal for MH to do nothing for up to a minute or two after being switching on. Sometimes the lamp takes a minutes to even begin starting. MH lamps are just subborn to start sometimes. Some MH lamp start easier than others and some ballasts allow lamps to start better than others.

I don't know when the fire happened but it was in the early 80s I think. 1982 or 1984 maybe? IDK... The fire wasn't in the room he was in. There is a steel outdoor-rated door (a person-door) from the "hallway" to the sprayroom so I assume he closed that door before opening the big garage door. He usually leaves the door open about a foot when he's in there. There is no door between the "hallway" and the garage/shop room though. The fire probably wasn't that big. I don't know if they needed to shut off the power or not. Yeah that Harmony House preheater was the only remaining original fixture to the shop, from 1940. There was the wall-mount strip, which I removed a couple years ago. It never worked so he said if I could take it down, I could have it. And it had an NOS Westy F40/CW blackender so I assume at soem point the fixture was relamped and when it didn't light, the person (probably my grandpa, or maybe a previous owner) just said "The heck with it" lol. When I fired up the Westy it made those cool flashes that unused lamps typically make when lit for the first time.

I'm curious what kind of ballast is in the F40 single lamp strip but whatever it is, it's got a very low ballast factor. I wonder what the original fixture would have been? Another Harmony House preheater? He said he's replaced most of the lighting in the shop because it was "too dim". My guess is that the whole shop was probably originally lit by F40 preheaters since it's from 1940. I don't think HOs and slimlines were out that that time. I'm thinking of raising the slimlines in the garage/shop room so they light a larger space (although the space below the fixtures won't be lit as brightly) He's got a concrete ceiling and the lights are all fed off surfact-mount conduit with cords coming down to the lights, which are suspended by chains. IMO, he should add some more fixtures. I think it would be cool to totally redo the lighting in the garage/shop so that the fixtures are in continuous rows and are either flush-mounted to the ceiling or suspened with EMT conduit instead of chained.

Congrats on operating a mini excavator! I bet you had lots of fun! Ah get to do some electrical wiring, eh? :D Wish I could! I've only replaced outlets and switches (aside from adding a keyless socket in the basement). I got some latches for my other vaportight fixture so now all I need are the diffusers and the strip channel fixtures to go inside! My scoutmaster said we'll go back and grab the correct diffusers next time we're there lol. I'll probably just buy them, but if I can get the diffusers for free rather than spend $70, I'd like that...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 14, 2014, 06:25:02 PM
He might have even left it open to prevent a "flashover"...that's why FDs bust out all the windows of a burning house.  At least it sounds like they didn't drychem the whole thing LOL...the boat I'm ending up with had a fire and the FD showed up by the time other people in the harbor/marina had it mostly out (garden hoses and private fire extinguishers), busted out all the windows, and filled the wheelhouse with dry chem (Which was JUST STARTING to cook; blistering varnish, etc.).  In just a few hours cleaning that up, a brand-new ShopVac was totally toast (motor and everything!). House fires (well a boat fire, but same thing) are a nightmare to clean up after, the fire department makes more mess than the fire and you have so much smoke/water damage/  Can still get a little whiff sometimes.  BTW it's also from 1940, just like the shop!
If the Westy lamp flickered and swirled, yeah, it was likely brand new.  Have you thought about disassembling that ballast (Be careful if it's HPF; it almost certainly has PCBs then) and soldering on new wires? Then you'll have a working F40 preheater for little or no cost! (Except maybe a paint job and brand new lamp/starter if you insist).
Slimlines were out by the late 50s but IDK about 1940.  No idea about HO.  You might be able to convert slimlines to HO but I'm not sure if the new ballast would be too tall for a typical striplight (An electronic one would be fine though).  One thing that will help is only buying 75 watt lamps in brighter color temps like 3500K.  I guess raising them up would help, as would adding more lights too.  But if the place sells it's not worth it.  *But saving an HO and a slimline sure is in that case*
Get some cheapo 1X or 2X F32T8 strips from a place like HD or Lowes, or ReStore.  Or F40...or F48T12 slimline or HO or better yet VHO!
It sure was fun running that thing!
I'm starting Christmas lights soon too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 14, 2014, 07:38:37 PM
I don't know if they had dry chem stuff back in the 80s lol. I think it was a minor fire. Everything in the hallway/room had to be replaced but nothing else was ruined to my knowledge. Are you talking about the single lamp wall-mount strip's ballast? It's actually NPF (but full power) so no capacitor. I probably could put new wires on the ballast. Don't have a soldering gun though. I actually bought two NOS GE NPF F30/40 preheat ballasts, one to replace the ballast in the fixture. I'll probably install the 80s replacement ballast I bought for now and maybe attempt to replace the leads in the original ballast at a later date. I still haven't restored the fixture. Gotta sand it down and repaint it. It originally had a silver/chrome finish but I don't know what color scheme I want to use when I restore it. It's very rusty so I'll be spending quite a bit of time sanding it.

If we were to replace all the slimline ballasts, I'd just have him buy T8 ballasts since the options for T12s (especially slimlines) are really getting slim (pardon the pun) wheras F96T8s have a much wider array of options. If he actually wanted a complete T8 retrofit, I'd use all high ballast factor ballasts (over 1.0BF). I'd be torn between 3500K and 5000K. I'd probably side with 3500K but the spray room I'd probably do 5000K. Bathroom is currently F32T8/735 with an instant-start ballast. I like the 3500K lamps in the bathroom. I think 3500K would look good in the troffers in his office too with the wood paneling and all. I will not use WW though lol. Maybe 8ft will be 5000K and 4ft 3500K? Right now everything is either some variation of 4100K or 5000K (aside from the 3500K T8s in the bathroom). Aside from the bathroom fixture, which I bought the lamps for, he's never used 3500K in his shop. Pretty sure he's never used warm white either. He's used 4100K, 5000K, and 6500K, the latter being F40/DX Altos in a 8ft tandem F40/RS wrap light in a utility closet that has a zillion dead flies in the diffuser.

Yeah even if he doesn't want to sell the shop, he's going to be 70 within the year so no matter what we may want to hear, I'm sure he won't be able to work more than another 10-15 years. He's been havind some medical issues the past few years (IMO is probably from all the chemicals and debris he's been exposed to in his shop over the years since he doesn't always wear a mask when doing work like he should. Down the line he'll probably sell the shop to one of his part-time employees that occasionally do some minor work for him. He doesn't want to sell the shop to his "guy" yet because he doesn't totally trust the guy. He just likes the security of owning the building.

Right now he's buying Philips CWS lamps since that's what Home Depot stocks. He just buys the cheapest ones he sees, which is pretty much always 4100K. If any ballasts die (which I highly doubt since I take too-good care of the fixtures lol) I'd have him buy a T8 ballast if it was an F40 but if it was a slimline I'd probably have him buy a T12 ballast since they only sell the 8ft T8s by the case online. Never seen them available in stores. The HBF F96T8 ballasts are cheaper than the F96T12 HBF ballasts though... Whatever, I'll probably have to replace the electronic ballast in the bathroom fixture before I need to replace any of the magnetic ballasts. If we were to add fixtures, they'd be either 4ft 2X F32T8 strips or 8ft 4X F328 strips since that's what they stock as Lowe's.

As for the single-lamp NPF F40 strip in the "hallway" room, I'll probably retrofit it with a 1.0 BF Advance 32W electronic PL ballast that can run one F32T8 and then stick a 3500K F32T8 in it. That will only cast as much as one lamp since I already have the ballast and will reuse te fixture. May sprypaint the fixture ballast channel to increase reflectivity too since it's probably got those soot marks.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 14, 2014, 10:57:38 PM
I think that would be a cool restoration when it's done! What's the line current?
I prefer SPX50 over SPX35 but that's just me.  If you replace the bathroom light ballast, try to find a program-start one if it's switched on and off every time.  (Although wasn't the preheat fixture it replaced which you now have running 24/7 towards the end?)
I'm surprised /DX isn't cheaper than /CWS...it was for F40s anyway.  (Altos at HD).  I like that color better anyway.  It's cool to see old technology in lighting in use, but if you guys sell I would retrofit everything since it would likely be replaced by the new owner, and you'd never get the old lamps, ballasts, etc.  This way you'll have plenty of slimline ballasts and lamps, and I'd try at least saving one fixture so you have something to put the ballasts/lamps in.  Same for HO.
I'm sure the paint fumes, etc. aren't helping! If he smokes that really won't help either.   My mother died at only 60 from stage 4 lung cancer and COPD caused by smoking her whole life. 
I would want to own the building/business too, even if I had other people actually doing the work there once I was too old and couldn't do it myself anymore since I had health issues. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 15, 2014, 06:01:33 PM
I believe the line current is .875A, and that's for a single 40W lamp. If that's not full-power, I don't know what is lol.

Well, I will install a ballast that I find at the ReStore (I have some on-hand) which is always instant-start. Never seen a programmed start T8 ballast at the ReStore before. Ideally, I'd installed a HBF ballast but the one in the bathroom fixture now is a NBF Advance ballast. Unless he buys the new ballast, it'll be one that I have laying around. As far as I know, he runs the bathroom light 24/7, which is a waste IMO since no one is there at night but his "guy" that works there likes to leave a couple lights on for the cats at night (which is kind of rediculous seeing that cats have excellent night vision) but his "guy" is "a pain in the ass" so my grandpa just leaves it on lol. That and the "hallway" fixture run 24/7. I believe everything else gets shut off when he closes up shop (pardon the pun) for the night. The lamps are Philips Alto II and the ballast is an Advance, so it's a contest to see what fails first lol. If I end up buying lamps for him for the T8, I'll use 3500K or 5000K GE lamps but if he buys the lamps, they'll be Philips Altos of whatever color temperature is the cheapest. Since I think all T8 color temps are the same price for the twin packs, he'll probably grab whatever but if he takes me with him (sometimes he does since he doesn't know what kind of lamps to get) I'll pick out 3500K or 5000K lamps.

/DX is cheaper than /CWS? Interesting... I think CWS are brighter, but he doesn't pay attention to that. Maybe I was with him when we got the lamps, as I would have picked out the brightest lamps. I don't remember. He got the F96T12s on his own though, and they're /CWS from March 2014. The F40T12/CWS lamps are from 2013 I think and so far have only been used at his house, not at the shop. With the slimlines, if they were retrofitted to F96T8, they'd probably still get replaced since most people only want 4ft lamps. If he holds onto the shop long enough for me to get my own place, I'll grab one of the HOs and maybe a slimline but that's it, since the expense would come out of my pocket and replacement 4X F32T8 fixtures are 50 bucks a pop. To be honest, I like the idea of using 4ft lamps but only with new fixtures. With those 8ft F32T8 retrofits, it usually looks really tacky and even some new factory-built 8ft F32T8 tandem fixtures are tacky looking. I don't mind 8ft F32T8 strips and wraps though and they look better mounted in continuous rows. If I got him to let me totally redo the lighting layout in the garage/shop room and add fixtures, I'd put all the T12s together one half of the garage/shop room and the new fixture on the other side (since if I put them all in continuous rows and mounted them them a little closer together, all the existing fixture could probably fit on one side). The old fixtures would remain F96T12. But that's probably not going to happen. I will ask him if I can raise the fixtures next time I'm there though.

No, he doesn't smoke at all, never did. My grandma (his ex-wife, my mom's mom) smokes like a chimney though and I get concerned for her. She's got periodontal disease from the smoking and has several false teeth. Her second husband (my grandpa, mom's step-dad, the grandpa who scraps) used to smoke but got ill (like death-row ill) and his doctor said "choose smoking or choose death". After that he just quit cold turkey (not that he had a huge choice) and he's better now but still sick.

My friend's mom, who was always a close person to me, also died of stage 4 lung cancer a couple years ago (she was in her mid-40s). She never smoked in her life, so it really came as a complete shock to everyone. But you don't necessarily need to be a smoker to get lung cancer. I don't know what caused her cancer. She was an accountant so maybe asbestos in the banks? I have no clue. :-\ She was one of the nicest people I'd ever met. Such a shame to loose her. I give you and my friends a lot of credit because I don't know how I'd deal with loosing my mother or father growing up. I guess if it happens, you don't have a choice other than to deal with it though.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 15, 2014, 09:28:59 PM
Wow that's a lot! I've heard the reason the crappy shoplights are so dim is since if they powered lamps at the true 40w they'd draw over 1.5a! (over 180w at 120v!)
LOL yeah...which will die first?
Yeah get something bright for sure.  Same for T8...whatever is brightest! Especially in a situation like that...a dark building without many windows. 
I started on the Christmas lights today.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 16, 2014, 03:18:12 PM
Yeah that's true. A NPF two-lamp ballast running at full power would drawa LOT of line current. You can convert a NPF ballast to HPF just by adding a capacitor across the black and white supply wires. Not sure of the rating but someone like Trent or Don would probably know. There is no way (that I know of) to improve the ballast factor though. If the ballast only powers 40W lamps at about 30W, then adding a cap to make it HPF won't effect the brightness of the lamp at all.

One thing I like about T8s is that all the color temps are the same CRI and lumen output for a given phosphor series. All the 700 Series lamps are 2800 lumens and (i think) 78CRI(?) whereas with T12s, a 6500K lamp has a totally different CRI and lumen output from a 3500K lamp. No real consistancy.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 16, 2014, 09:37:06 PM
I think it's 75CRI but yeah you're right.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 16, 2014, 10:46:39 PM
remember those twin F40/RS shoplights from the ReStore with the 1977 Therm-o-Matic ballasts and how i converted one to T8 and used it in my grandpa's shop's bathroom? Well, I've decided that I am going to convert the other to T8 as well and use it to replace a cooler looking T12 fixture within the family. I'll save the like-new ballast of course.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 20, 2014, 08:02:48 PM
I do.  I am considering buying a 3 lamp ballast for that Gibson troffer light from my school and Using the Shunted universal ballast that is currently running the center lamp in my homemade 40 watt preheat fixture and using the ballast that will displace to fix the cheap LPS shop light that died recently


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 20, 2014, 09:02:46 PM
Hmm all your NBF ballasts seem to be dying. The single lamp NPF ballasts are virtually unkillable lol. I'm making my English teacher a new podium since her old one is distressed. I have to file down a couple pieces in my shop at school and then stain it and finished assembling it.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 20, 2014, 09:23:44 PM
It is still the same one I was previously talking about.   Nice! I am currently doing woodworking in the shop the sears shop lights came from.  WELL the two with residential ballasts that is.  But the table saw I am using over there, a 1994 Delta UniSaw, used to be under the sears light with the GE ballast.

l


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 21, 2014, 10:59:44 AM
Ah I see. I thought it was another one lol. Ah cool! Really cool that you are still tied to the place you got some lights from.

I have my M-250A on as a space heater for my room lol. It's only 100W MV but heats up the room about one degree every every 20 minutes or so. I brought my room from 60 degrees when I woke up to 65.5 now. I keep my heat vent shut (we have forced air heat) since I like my room to stay cool but with the vent shut all night, it's usually cooler than I'd like it to be when I wake up in the morning lol. It's snowing out now but on Christmas it's going to be 60 degrees out and rain! New England weather is very bipolar lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 21, 2014, 04:24:56 PM
Yeah if it works! I bet my 400 watt halide would do really well but it's too bright.


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 21, 2014, 07:20:07 PM
LOL yeah 400W is too bright, but I could remote-ballast my OV-25 remote ballast or another light to my 400W HPS westinghouse ballast, since it's still in my street light pole as a counterweight.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 21, 2014, 10:24:49 PM
I just want a somewhat dimmed out 400 watt mercury lamp for that ballast, then I can do that without burning my eyes out!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 22, 2014, 07:02:53 AM
Yeah 400W MV isn't that intensely bright. Good news when using as a space heater, is that they give off the same amount of heat whether they're new or really dimmed lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 22, 2014, 07:39:44 PM
That's what I was thinking.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 23, 2014, 06:59:37 PM
I stained the tabletop podium yesterday with Minwax Red Oak 215 stain and applied the first of three coats of Cabot Gloss Polyurethane. It's going to have a great shine to it when it's done! :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 23, 2014, 08:48:04 PM
I will be gluing the knife block together later this week, in the same shop the Sears shop lights came from.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 23, 2014, 09:13:28 PM
A knife block? Cool! Are you going to treat it with a polyurethane or keep it natural wood?

BTW, I busted that 1940s-ish GE ballast from the single lamp strip. Not potted at all. Everything is wrapped in brittle waxed paper. The wires are easily replacable with a solder iron (which I don't have...) but now I need to find some new electrically insulated rated waxed paper or a substitute since the old paper is brittle and turning to dust, much like the supply leads and ballast label.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 24, 2014, 04:01:20 PM
OK, I got coat 2 of three of polyurethane on the podium. I also added "MADE IN 2014 BY MIKE McCANN" on the base and added "McCOMBE * B1-10" on the top (McCombe, is my English teacher's last name and B1-10 is her classroom). I wrote this with a brush and a can of red paint. I wrote it twice since once wasn't enough to make the writing a nice rich red, so I went over it again. Then after it dried, I applied the second coat of polyurethane to the podium, going over the red writing, as it's a clear gloss polyurethane. This will protect the painted letters from scraping off, since it will be "buried" under two coats of polyurethane.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 24, 2014, 05:42:56 PM
Oh very nice! Does the varnish stink? (lots of fumes)?
Probably rub it with something but that's it.  I might add all the cuts I've done for it were done using a Delta UniSaw (a really nice table saw) that used to be directly underneath the Sears shoplight with the Bonusline ballast.
Good luck getting it going again! Post pics if you do of what you did!
The outside of my house is lit with C7s and C9s.  A neighbor commented I should have at least a 4KW Christmas display! It's about 1KW all told I think.  That same neighbor gave me that Lithonia 8' slimline I got awhile back.
Inside is minis on the tree and I also have some LED sets (half-wave; nasty flicker) elesewhere inside I run 24/7 since they draw 2.4w each...for 3 of them that's less than 8w and perfect for nightlights!
I'm developing a new interest in those 60s-early 80s "deuce and a half" army trucks.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 24, 2014, 10:22:24 PM
Actually, I don't even think there is varnish! I think the wires had a prefab coating on them and were just wrapped around a bar of metal! I removed all the brittle paper and I don't really know how good of condition it's in. There are no visible signs of a short (no burn marks or deformed coils) but the coils unravel by hand. The external lead wires are soldered onto the ballast coils.

To fix it I'll need to buy a soldering iron, some 18 guage wire, probably some transformer varnish, and some sort of waxed paper or other insulator to wrap the cluster of coils. I'll get pics soon and post them on LG and seek assistance.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 24, 2014, 10:57:11 PM
I'm talking the podium varnish.  I'm all too familiar with paint/varnish fumes.  Worst one is oil-based paint (or even drywall/water-stain-blocking primer for that matter!) And don't even get me started on muriatic acid or acetone. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 24, 2014, 11:24:12 PM
Ah yeah the stain had a very strong odor to it (still fills the house) but the Cabot polyurethane is a relatively low-order. It's pretty much pancake syrup in a can lol.

So what do you think about the ballast? :P I found that it was only held closed by two spot-welds, right where the holes to mount it to the fixture are.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: joe_347V on December 25, 2014, 01:54:13 AM
Yeah when I stained my traffic light stand during the summer, I had to do it in the garage since the varnish and stain had a really strong smell. I used a one step stain/varnish since it was a small project and I didn't feel like buying two different products to finish it.

As for the ballast, I suppose you could use this (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Nomex-410-Insulation-Paper-5-mil-thick-5-each-8-x12-Sheets-Aramid-Electrical-/261662003549?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3cec45515d) to replace the crumbling paper. You can use those European screw terminal blocks inside to attach the new wire if you don't have a soldering iron. Sounds like it's a pretty early ballast since it's unpotted and had wax paper coil insulation.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 25, 2014, 12:50:03 PM
Ah wow I didn't know they still made that stuff! lol I think this would work! Thanks. 8) I don't think there's enough room inside for the terminals so maybe I can twist the wires together and then glob some liquid electrical tape on them. Yeah it's a cira-1940 ballast. The fixture didn't work when it was removed so I don't know if it was the ballast or if the fixture didn't have power, as no replacement went up in its place, since my grandpa never used this light.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2014, 02:57:07 PM
Give it a whirl! Do you know anybody with a soldering iron?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 25, 2014, 03:44:53 PM
Nope. Maybe my grandpa has one. I'll ask him Sunday when I see him...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2014, 09:03:33 PM
f he does electrical work in cars I would think he has one.  If you get really desperate and impatient you might try a propane blowtorch and some copper plumbing pipe flux but I dunno if a torch is a great idea...though you might have both of those items around already and if not they can probably bought at someplace like Home Depot, or even Walmart LOL. 
BTW have you started driving (a car) yet Mike? If so have you tried a manual yet?  I haven't even started yet.  Granted, I currently spend most of my time in a place without cars LOL.  My mom was going to start teaching me the basic stop and go type stuff in our church's parking lot on a weekday (non-Sunday) but we never made it that far.  But both my parents (and even one of my teachers during a field trip) have been telling me the rules of the road as they drive, for example I'm turning my turn signal blinker on blah blah feet before the intersection, etc.
I know hardly anything about cars, but I am slowly beginning to educate myself (Through YouTube, an expert on most any subject) on those 60s/70s/80s "Deuce-and-a-half" ex-army trucks.  Kinda interested in those things, even as an everday-driver vehicle, just to be unique.  "I drive a Saturn" "I drive a Chrysler" "I drive a Chevy van" "I drive a Deuce"....
Am I the only one who wishes the forum had the same "laughing" emoticon as the gallery?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 25, 2014, 10:19:31 PM
Yeah I'm not sure if he's got one or not. He does body work on cars but I'm sure how much he does with the electronics inside. He always makes a car look nice but a lot of his cars are clunkers dispite looking sharp lol. He's got one with a broken speedometer so when he's going 50 MPH it says he's going 75 MPH lol.

Yeah I got my permit back in May 2014 and have been driving ever since. I got my license on November 18th so now I can drive alone but I don't have my own car, so I can only drive my parents' vehicles (Chevy Impala or Chevy Silverado) when they let me lol. I'm trying to save up fo my own car, and to do that I need to get a job, which has proven more difficult than I thought! Once I find a part-time job I can save up all my money for a car. My parents agreed to pay for insurance, which lifts a burden off my shoulders, but I will be fully responsible for purchasing the car and paying for gas and repairs, etc. I don't know if they'll pay the registration for me, but I don't think it's that much (less than $100). I've only driven automatic. I've never actually been inside a stick-shift vehicle before. Kids in my school like stick-shifts since you can "drift" on corners but I really don't give a crap about drifting lol. Automatics are a lot easier to operate and although they tend to use a little more gas than stick-shifts, I think they're worth it. Ahh I couldn't tell you what distance you're supposed to turn your blinker on but most people around here don't use their blinkers anyway so it's not a big deal lol. I turn on my blinker based on my speed. If I'm going faster, I turn it on further from the turn. I usually turn the blinker on a second or two before I brake. I usually press the brakes lightly for a couple seconds before I actually brake if there's someone behind me so the brake lights come on before I actually start braking so they know I'm going to stop.

You're supposed to count to three at a stop sign before you continue but no one does that lol. I don't either, though I do stop. Some people fly right through stop signs and think tapping the brake lights is enough. :8) As for speed limits, I stay within 10 over the speed limit most of the time but I sometimes go as much as 15-20 over the speed limit (some roads have a really low speed limit IMO lol). I haven't driven with snow/ice on the road yet. My parents said once the snow and ice come I won't be driving as much, since they want to teach me safe snow/ice practices. I did get to drive in the rain last night and I was surprised at how fast people drive in the rain. I was on the freeway (where I noticed the new LEDs) in a 65MPH speed zone and people were doing like 80MPH. I was doing like 60-65 since the rain made it hard to see. (was after dark, about 6PM).

LOL one of those army trucks would be cool to have. Bet you'd get poor mileage out of it though unless they're diesel. Ah yeah I wish the (http://www.galleryoflights.org/mb/gallery/images/smiles/icon_lol.gif) icon was an option on the forum too. :P


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2014, 10:36:07 PM
I laughed out loud at the speedometer thing.  The company flatbed for the place we worked for last year had a broken speedomeeter that was stuck way down past 120MPH...we were joking they must've been really flooring it! Especially in an isolated town (no roads in or out, cars come in/out on the ferry) where the highest speed limit is 45MPH!
Which do you prefer? The Impala or the truck? Insurance can be really expensive from what I'm told for teen drivers like you.  It personally drives me crazy when I look at the speedometer from the passenger seat and the person I'm with is exceeding the speed limit, even by a few MPH.  (Like 50 in a 45 zone, 60 in a 50 zone, etc.)  How about people who drive 50MPH on unpaved roads with no published speed limit? I can't decide on that one LOL.  The one that ESPECIALLY annoys me (even on deserted, remote highways) is when people lazily drift over the yellow line. 
Do you drive with the radio, etc. on or are you still trying to concentrate a lot since you're new to driving? My mom had the "no talking zone" from when I was little even up to a year and a half ago when she was merging onto/exiting off of the freeway...trying to go from 0-60+ or 60+-something much less.
I didn't know that about the stop signs, though it makes sense.  I was once with someone who ran a red light on purpose, but it was like 10PM, nobody else at the intersection, and "We have a bathroom emergency in this car". 
Well the ones I'm semi-interested in are multifuel actually.  (Kinda amazes me more things aren't actually!).  They apparently have a really arbitrary/unconventional shifting pattern (manual of course) too. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 25, 2014, 11:54:06 PM
I forgot to mention another thing that kinda irritates me as a wannabe-driver is those intersections where you can't see what's coming (like on the inside of a curve).  One my dad and I frequent (It's where his other half lives) is a fairly steep unpaved road intersecting at something way less than a right angle with a 45MPH zone...you can never see what's coming in the same lane as you! (Offending intersection is on the left side and you're merging into the left lane...you can see the left but not the right!
Also the no-talking-zone thing was because my mom disliked driving on the freeway...tried to avoid it by taking other roads if at all possible!
Another good one is the time I managed to send a peeler log (fencepost) down a very steep hill into a 35MPH zone, and, as luck would have it, a car came from each direction at that exact moment!
I'm pretty sure I've mentioned by now that the house I grew up in had a driveway with a 37 percent grade.  It was also accessed off of a dirt road too, that was once a dead-ender too.  It eventually got pushed through when the neighbor's new big fancy house got built and they wanted to be on city sewer instead of a septic...or maybe it was code by then that all new construction had to be...anyway they bulldozed through a service road and people would still go off the side all the time.  Also the driveway of my house (the 37 percent grade one) was raked concrete, yet on people's newer, fancier cars the low-traction alarms would go off! Also it had a curb which drivers unfamilar with our driveway occasionally high-centered themselves on! A big source of these was the fact the house was two streets above the major high school in a town of 25,000-some people.  Another major byproduct of that was the band practice noise, or, as we called it, the "Drummer bummers". 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2014, 01:10:16 PM
Before I started driving it bothered me when people would speed but now that I'm driving, I've realized that some roads have rediculously low speed limits. IMO, I think the DOT purposely posts a speed limit lower than what the actual maximum safe speed is because they know people will speed. No matter what the speed limit is, people are still going to speed, so they probbaly just figure "If we make everything 25 MPH then people won't speed at dangerous speeds" lol. There are no unpaved public roads here so I can't say lol. I've driven on unpaved camp roads (they were actually paved 50-75 years ago lol) but they're lumpy and not really maintained so I keep it at about 15-20. My friends have gone like 40 on them just for fun but it's really bumpy and if you hit a big potholt in the road, something might get messed up with the car. Yeah I agree, it's very important to remain inside the lines. On residential roads with no yellow stripe, I will ride closer to the middle though but when someone else is coming from the other way I'll obviously move over so they have plenty of room to go by.

I always listen to the radio. I actually like the highway a lot. Rush-hour traffic is a pain though lol. Yeah on a road test, if you don't wait three seconds after stopping before you take off it's an instant-fail. Same goes for right turns on red, though if I'm making a right on red and no one is coming, I'll just make the turn without fully stopping, treating it as a "yield" (yield is just stopping if/when necessary, otherwise no stopping/slowing is required). I've never flat-out goen through a red light or a stop sign but I sometimes "roll" through a stop sign, where you slow down but don't come to a full stop. I only do that when I can easily see there is no one else coming.

Not sure how steep a 37% grade is (never understood the whole % grade thing. It's either a steep hill or it's not lol) Was this new "fancy" house off-grid or was this another palce that was on-grid? If it was off grid, I'd imagine they'd need a few generators!

BTW, I picked up a ceramic Cooper pull-chain socket today to replace the T17 preheater and picked up a pair of Sylvania F32T8/835 Octron fluorescents. The Octrons started dim in the middle upon initial start up but I'm going to let them run a while and then leave the off and then try agin and see what happens.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 26, 2014, 06:00:59 PM
In the town I grew up in the main road was a 45MPH speed limit...except for 2 blocks right in front of the police station where it was 25MPH...I wonder why! (Insert sarcastic voice). 
What sort of music do you listen to while driving? Yeah stop/go/stop/go is a pain...I imagine with a stick shift it would be really awful!
37% is steep, trust me.  Both those houses were on grid...city power, water, piped natural gas, all that.  This was in central California.  But here, where I currently live, is off-grid.  It's weird though since my house has city water and a landline phone (Did I mention there's no cell coverage here? There is everywhere else, even in practically the midddle of nowhere just a few miles away, but not here!).  I'd like to see city power though for sure...I'd hook right on immediately unless I managed to develop a nice alternative energy situation (solar/wind/hydro).  There's a creek nearby and another lot we could buy which has waterfall frontage...so hydropower.  We had (Well, have) a 400w 12v wind generator but it siezed up and quit working.  It made a noticeable difference thought when it DID work. Though I currently run a gas (or occasionally a diesel) generator to charge batteries, and when it's not running I have a 2000w inverter that runs stuff in the house.  I'd like a bigger battery bank though, some alternative energy, etc.  though. 
If I had to totally wire a house in a situation like this I'd make most of my lights and anything else that could be 12vDC.  Light bulbs can be bought in 12v, and for a stereo I could use an aftermarket car radio, etc.  Then I would only need an inverter for certain things and it could be turned off when not needed. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2014, 08:57:17 PM
Ah this was in California... I was thinking Alaska. That explains a lot lol. I'm assuming the roads where you live now are unpaved as well? Do you live on the mainland or an island? How close are the nearest power lines? I guess you don't like living off-grid? I'm sure it's nice not having to pay an electric bill every month but you probably end up spending the same amount if not more on gas and maintenance for the generator and inverter. With the grid, you don't need to do any maintenance lol. Just pay your bill on-time very month. (Speaking of which, NGrid is going to raise our electric rates an astronomical 24%! 11% starting January 1st and the rest of the increase will take affect this summer. This is due to the rising cost of natural gas and the fact that NGrid has to pay for the maintenance they've had to do over the past few years due to storms. This year was a very calm year though, the only thunder storm we had was on the 4th of July. Anything else was just wind and rain!)

You'd need a pretty decent volume of water to produce hydroelectricity so I'm unsure if a creek would provide enough power for a house.

I suppose you could add some 12V circuits in your house and use 12V LED lamps and just run them straight off a battery. Then you could just use the inverter and generator when you power larger appliances. You could have some fluorescents wired up to 120V for when you need a lot of light and just use the 12V lamps otherwise. I wonder if you can just use the existing romex cable for the 12V circuits? Might be a little lossy but may work fine. Might just need to replace the switches with 12V DC ones. You can do some really cool lighting effects with 12V LED tape light. 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 26, 2014, 09:20:13 PM
Well, there's no cars/paved roads where I live.  The nearest power lines are like 70 miles away LOL. 
I would like to think it's about the same, if not cheaper.  I can get away with  really conserving and running my generator 4hrs/day, at less than a gallon of gas a day! Yeah I wish I had city power though...
This one would make enough for a couple houses most likely if done right. 
Exactly! Or 12v CFLs.  12v incandescents are horribly inefficient.  Yeah normal #12 Romex would work fine, I've seen other houses here wired like such.  A really common practice before inverters were so popular was to have double systems...one 120v and one 12v.  So you'd have 12v lights, etc. all the time and when running a generator to charge your batteries you had 120v lights.  You can also use regular "Leviton" type switches, receptacles, pullchain light fixtures, etc...again, I see it done all the time.
LED tape light...already seen that done too! Someone I know (actually who gave me that 50w HPS lamp) did that for undercabinet lighting, replacing LOA plastic preheat F15T8 fixtures.  The color was too blue IMO (And I'm a 5000K/6500K kind of guy) but for the low electricity usage it was totally worth it.  Only thing is, the LEDs phosphor degrade and turn to what I call "Lighted apple juice" in color...


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 26, 2014, 10:24:43 PM
Oh there's not even any roads? So do you guys just have walking trails that join to make a "neighborhood"? Could you take a picture of you're neighborhood sometime? You could post it in the gallery, I don't think anyone would mind.

Ah cool, you wouldn't even need to do any rewiring! Why not try 12V then? I'm all for saving energy but there's really no good alternative to incandescents right now in incandescent applications (there's halogens but they don't save any serious energy and there's an upcoming 2020 Energy Act that will effect many of the current halogens so we will be saying good-bye to halogens too I guess... LEDs are great in recessed cans (they're already directional anyway lol) but we don't have any recessed cans. LEDs aren't really great in most of our fixtures because most of our fixtures require light shining in 360 degrees to look right. I have LEDs in my bedroom light but they look "odd" lol, though I've gotten used to them. I wish they'd make an LED that actualle used a real A19 incadescent glass envelope, but most of the room in an LED lamp is actually used up by the driver and the LEDs only make up a small portion of the size of the lamp so most of the lamp wouldn't light up. CFLs at least offer 360 degrees of light, though they can't be used in some compact fixtures or in enclosed fixtures. I don't mind the A-shaped CFLs, but I'm not a huge fan of CFLs myself. It's not that I don't like the fluorescent part, I just don't trust them.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2014, 01:53:30 PM
Yeah and some people have ATVs which they drive around. I'm actually getting one tomorrow.    I'm fine with my 120v system but if I had to wire a new house that's how I'd do it.  I like CFLs, but I prefer something other than the ubiquitous 2700K instant-start spiral...either electronic RS, 4100/5000/6500K, tri tube or A shape, or any combo thereof.  I think that's because I simply find the spirals to be too "normal" or "ordinary" LOL.  Same for the normal "soft white" A-line household incandescents...even a clear or /IF lamp is more interesting to me. 



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2014, 02:25:42 PM
I like inside frost lamps simply because it's a nicer light. It's the quality of clear lamps without the glare. Soft White lamps have a sort of cloudy light to them. Not as crisp as inside frost or clear. Personally, I'd like to use clear lamps inside enclosed fixtures and then used inside frost in fixtures where the lamp is visible. Currently we have all soft white lamps though except for the outdoor lights, which use clear halogens. I plan to pick out some clear lamps to see how the are inside. The basement halogens have dimmed to the point where 40W incandescents would be more effective (and they're 75W equivalent lamps). The "boob lights" have one lamp socket and they're rated for 60W max, so the basement is too dim IMO.

Have fun with the ATV! (and be careful! I've heard to many stories of people getting killed because they don't use their heads when operating those things!) I've personally never driven one or been in one before.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 27, 2014, 05:51:54 PM
Yeah I like the "halo" effect they give off.  Or maybe it's just nostalgia...I don't know. Never thought the light was "cloudy" but I kinda prefer the fake-frost-you-can-clearly-see-the-filament-through-even-when-off GE "Basic" bulbs (Or the Ace hardware GE-debranded versions of same).  I especially like seeing those above lamps with vertical filaments over the horizontal ones for whatever reason.  I miss the days of even 60w bulbs having vertical filaments...if I had to choose /SWs it would be the 90s-early 2000s GE "Lightstyles for Lifestyles" era GE soft whites with the associated unique package design.  Just something I remember from when I was little LOL. 
I like clear bulbs since "you can see what's happening inside".  I actually have quite a few clear 100w and 60w and at least one 40w, 130v 5000 hour rough-service bulbs from my honorary grandfather's house.  I like them, though I use CFLs instead LOL...and boring 2700K spirals for the most part at that! (Although I've only started buying 5000K or 6500K ones)
"Boob" lights...you're not the first to coin that term! We have two in this house too, brass "trim" and a "clear" ribbed "bowl".  Those actually would be cool with clear lamps.  But they're outfitted with spiral CFLs (2700K).  Guess what? They're even on a dimmer switch! But it doesn't "dim", just goes on and off...was killed by my MSW inverter within a few days.  Though I think the light over a kitchen table should be on a dimmer personally.  And the one incandescent in the house...
I've hears some horror stories too, a neighbor got thrown over the handlebars of one and slid like 20+ feet over gravel and was amazingly not hurt after it hit a stump.  Same guy also fell like 3 stories off scaffolding working on his house, though that one did result in 3 fractured ribs and calling the Coast guard to medivac him out.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 27, 2014, 08:18:19 PM
Never heard of the GE "Basic" bulbs. I've only seen the GE lamps in "crystal clear", "soft white", "ultra soft white", and "reveal". I've noticed that for the past several years the "standard life" 750 or 1000 hour life lamps have been hard to find. I've only really seen the extended life incandescents, which have less lumens. In most residential applications, I'd prefer the extra light over the longer life. And in applications that are hard to access, I probably wouldn't install an incandescent anyways.

I've never payed attention to the filament structure. I still don't really pay attention to it since most of the lamps I deal with aren't clear. I prefer the C-shaped filaments though since they're supported in multiple locations so they're less likely to break. The vertical and horizontal filaments that were straight seemed fragile to me, with only a support at each end. We had 60W Sylvania A19 clear lamps with vertical filaments on the four lights out front in the original brass fixtures we had. After around 7 years or so the original brass fixtures were pretty tarnished so we installed new fixtures, bronze ones with built-in photocells. But in early summer this year, a basketball hit one of the lights so we had to replace it (the ball destroyed the hell out of it lol). Of course we couldn't find an exact replacement so we bought two new ones and replaced both fixtures on the garage (there are two lights near the garage, one on either side of the overhead door; and there's two at the front door, one on either side of the door). The replacements are actually plastic, which I personally would have never bought, but my dad didn't want to spend $50 on a decent pair of outdoor fixtures (and I agree, the price of residential outdoor lighting is rediculous!) The plastic ones don't match the two near the door but they're close enough. When we got the two new fixtures I installed new 52W (75W equivalent) clear Sylvania A19 halogen lamps. One had a broken filament right out of the box, so I just stuck in a 40W clear appliance lamp since it was the only clear lamp I could find. It's by the front door. It's much dimmer than the halogens but but lights lol. When we had replaced the original brass outdoor lights, I had replaced the one on the deck with the 70W PSMH fixture. We used to use the 70W PSMH fixture all the time but since I mounted a light off the deck I don't use the deck light as much lol. It throws more light sideways than downward but whatever... It has a coated protected lamp inside it.

I'm not against dimmers but I personally don't have a use for them. I'd rather just have regular toggle switches. I don't like those "decora" switches (the ones that use the same faceplates as GFCIs). When a lamp burns out I can't tell if it's on or off lol. Toggle switches offer a more clear indication. We don't have any dimmer switches in my house. Any application where a dimmer switch may be considered practical (dining room, bedrooms, kitchen) we have CFLs, since those are the most-used fixtures so we couldn't use dimmers anyway (dimmable CFLs and LEDs are too expensive). I've been installing incandescents in the bedroom fixtures as they burn out though (my bedroom is LED, by brothers ceiling fan's got two CFLs and one 40W incandescent and my parents' room I think has a CFL and an incandescent, maybe two CFLs). The kitchen and dining room fixtures (my kitchen, dining room, and living room are all one big open room) each have four 14W A19 Maxlite CFLs. the light over the kitchen sink has one incandescent and one CFL, or maybe two incandescents... The hallway light has its original 52W Sylvania SuperSaver incandescents. The light over the stairs has all five original incandescents (whatever they are). One of the four boob lights has its original lamp (what ever that may be since I've never opened it up), and the last remaining keyless socket in the garage (out of the original four we had) has its original 90W Sylvania SuperSaver. Also, the vanity over my bathroom sink has all three original 60W soft white medium base globe lamps. Not sure of the make but I think the bases are marked 60W 120V. The motion sensor floods we never use also have their original lamps. My closet light also has its original lamp. The other two closet fixtures have had new lamps installed. The originals were Sylvania F20T12/CWs, made in Canada in 2003.

About the closet lights, my parent's closet lamp had burned out, so they bought a replacement, a GE Ecolux F20T12 daylight. It had a broken electrode so it rectifies. They found that irritating, so they swapped it with my brother's closet light, as he never uses his anyway. Then the lamp they took from his burned out (well, it wouldn't light properly; it would only light at the ends or something weird) so they installed another lamp, which is a Sylvania F20T12/CW, made in the USA. Mine is the only one with the original Canadian Sylvania lamp, though it doesn't have the original ballast, since I converted it to preheat lol. I will probably convert it back to trigger start when I move out. I should also note that the three closet lights have tube guards as well. My closet light's ballast is a January 2003 Universal, so I assume the other two have the same ballasts.

So seven fixtures in my house have the original lamps (15 lamps) in my house. Not bad for 11 and-a-half years! (BTW, like the new avitar? It's a parody of a "No Parking" sign. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 28, 2014, 05:16:05 PM
Their finish is kinda like the currently-made GE halogens.  I've noticed that too, in almost any situation I'm willing to sacrafice lamp life for more lumens. (And more efficiency!) There are only five incandescent lamps in use in my house, and two of those are seldom-used 250w infared heatlamps.  The other three are in a walk-in pantry, a home office, and a closet.  The latter two of those bulbs were there when we moved in...never changed them over to CFLs since they're almost never used and the pantry light I stuck an incandescent back in since it's unheated in there and in the winter a CFL just doesn't cut it according to my dad...granted it was pretty dim and that light is only on for like 60 seconds at a time anyway!
I'm kinda suprised the only fluorescent lights in your whole house were in closets of all possible places, but yes, bare-bulb incandescents could be considered a fire hazard in a closet I guess so maybe it was a code thing.  I bet the tube guards were required by code though.
I mainly like CFLs since they can be found in cooler color temps...I personally happen to prefer 5000K or 6500K. 
I think it's uniqie, I did get a laugh out of it.  I need to change mine sometime...not sure what to put there though.  Maybe the Advance slimline ballast pic?


Title: Re: The Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 29, 2014, 10:52:12 AM
Ah I think they're just soft white lamps but not as much powder is used with making them. My GE halogens are all fully-coated with the soft white powder though. I have a 24-pack contractor's case of "Standard" 100W 130V Sylvania incandescents from Lowe's that have a very light soft white coating inside. It's thin enough where you can see the filament inside the lamp through the coating and the coating is pretty uneven. One side of the lamp may have almost nothing while the other side may look like a real soft white lamp lol. The coating isn't uniform between different lamps either. Some lamps in the box look like typical soft whites while others look like clear lamps with some light fogging on the inside lol.

Wow only five? I guess on inverter electricity you have to be energy-wise though. I don't have a pantry in my house. Is it pretty much a walk-in closet for food? We have a good amount of cupboards in the kitchen, some of which we have food in and we have a coat closet right off the kitchen that we store ceral, oatmeal, maple syrup, unopened ketchups and mustards, etc. We also keep cereal, 24-packs of water bottles, coffee mix, etc in the laundry room in the basement, right under the F30T12 upside down undercabinet light actually! (BTW, the lamp stopped rectifying. Turns out an electrode was broken so the lamp wasn't heating at that end. I jiggled the electrode around and it made contact. So I shut it off and turned it back on and the initial start up "welded" the electrode back into place lol)

Where else would you suspect fluorescents to be located in my house? I suspect it's a code thing as well, since my cousins' house has single F40T12 NPF strip lights in the closets mounted on the ceiling. Theire closets are all walk-ins though whereas our closets (aside from my parents') are not walk-ins. Also, our fluorescents are wall-mounted over the door as opposed to ceiling-mounted. I didn't even think about the tube guards as being a code thing. I generally dislike tube gaurds but since they've always had the tube guards I'm used to them. My closet is 2ft deep, 5ft wide, and 8ft ceiling height (like the rest of the house) so that gives you an idea on the side of the closet.

I know for a fact that the basement lights were layed out on a minimum code allowance basis. I believe light fixture boxes can't be any more than 8 or 10 feet from each other, and thats exactly how far apart they are in my basement. There were no other fluorescents in the house other than the three F20T12 single lamp strips in the closets. The garage had two keyless ceramic sockets with 90W Sylvania SuperSaver lamps and the utility room and laundry room both each had one keyless socket with a 90W SuperSaver lamp. I still have all the keyless sockets, as I plan to re-install them when I move out. I'll probably buy 150W or 200W incandescents, if they're still around, for that extra light output. I like 3500K and 5000K for linear fluorescents but for incandescent-applications I like the color of incandescents. I wouldn't want daylight CFLs in my living room or bedroom or bathoom or kitchen, etc. Maybe in an unfinished basement but in that case I'd want linear fluorescents.

BTW, I think tomorrow I am going to my Aunt Kathy's house, where I will change the rest of those outlets and hopefully replace those two remaining Western Electric F20/TS fixtures. I will be disconnecting the F90T17 preheater but I'm not taking it (yet). I will eventually down the road take the T17 fixture (she flat-out said I can have it) and hopefully will get the 8ft F40T12 preheater too, since it's OLD! I will hopefully have room for the T17 in the spring or summer but as for the 8ft preheater, there are no places big enough in my house or in the shed where I can store a light of that size, and unfortunately it's not a multi-section light, pretty sure it's one 8ft section. I will be disconnecting the T17 and installing a pull-chain socket in its place with a 100W incandescent in its place. As for the F20T12 WE fixtures, the pull-chain one will be replaced with a pull-chain incandescent socket and the switch-controlled WE fixture will be replaced with a F32T8 industrial (the twin to the fixture I used to replace the Harmony House fixture in my grandpa's shop's bathroom).

Hmm Maybe the slimline or maybe a warm white mainlighter, since you have so many lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 29, 2014, 12:04:49 PM
Yeah that's kinda my theory too, though somebody like Dave Silverliner could confirm this. 
Yeah only five! (Well, maybe a few hundred right now since I still have my Christmas lights up and many of those are incandescent minis, C7s, C9s, or G20s. 
Yeah it's basically a 6X8-ish walk in closet for food.  I leave the window open in there most of the time to help it stay cooler in there but as a result a CFL is too dim at first and it never really gets a chance to warm up since that light is only on for like 30-90 seconds at a time LOL. 
Nice that you got that lamp going again!  Curious to see how long it lasts now!
Yeah my mom's walk-in closet had an incandescent but it was enclosed in a glass globe, as was the hall closet.  Same in my dad's closet here.  Still it's not a bare bulb that could touch clothes, boxes, etc.  Mom's house was buit in 1988 and the part of this one where said closet is located would probably be 70s-early, early 80s. Not sure when the closet was wired though...it's done in "white" Romex as is the vast majority of my house, even parts done in the 90s-ish. (Or 2000s if stuff was left over which is also possible).  Although 30+ years ago pics of this house show a couple light fixtures and a (vintage) TV and VCR so there must have been something going on (Which would be the 70s "black" Romex in the oldest parts of the house).  (Thankfully it's not aluminum).  And some additions, like that Lithonia "Basket" wraparound, have been yellow, though I got that only-a-year-old  yellow stuff from a house teardown and, you guessed it, re-used it here. 
Isn't your cousins' house (or that part of it anyway I should say) from like 2006? Then it might have been code.  I read someplace that new houses built in California were supposed to have fluorescent lighting in the kitchen, though I also see it being taken out, namely those 70s-80s illuminated drop ceilings being ripped out and 4 recessed cans being put in their place.  I'd say except for where code insists perhaps, fluorescent lighting is generally falling out of favor in residential situations like kitchens, bathrooms, etc.  If anything, I'm suprised places like garages and basements don't have it more, for example your house built in 2003!

Nah I'd replace with F32T8 shoplights or wraparounds when you move out unless the rest of your family doesn't want fluorescent lighting in those places anymore.  Leave the T17 hooked up till you take it! Or at least that's what I'd do.  But have fun either way and take pics and share replacement stories!



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 29, 2014, 05:17:59 PM
My dad's parents (my late-grandpa, grandma, and aunt's house where the F40 Western Electrics and the T17 are) have incandescents in the closet. My grandma has a pullchain fixture with a 15W incandescent in it and she's got a window in her close too. My aunt and late-grandpa don't have closet lights though. The three bedrooms don't have ceiling boxes either, the lights are wall-mount fixtures and have those black stick switches that you turn 180-degrees.  Their bathroom light and the hall light at the top of the stairs are the only lights controlled by wall switches. My mom's mom's and step-dad's house (the one who scraps) doesn't have closet lights in any of the closets (none are walk-ins). My mom's dad's and step-mom's house (the grandpa who has the T12 troffers in the basement and the autobody shop) has a keyless incandescent in the master closet and no light in the other closets. All of these homes are older homes though that likely predate the code issue if there is a code about it.

What's wrong with "white" romex? That's what is used as the standard romex now. white is 14-guage romex, yellow is 12-guage, and orange romex has 10-gauge conductors. The most recent codes I'm familiar with when it comes to gaueg sizes is that bathrooms must have 12-guage (yellow) romex wiring and one receptacle my be located at the sink counter (GFCI protected). Standard height outlets on the wall are not permited "X" feet from a tub due to what would happen if a moron tried using a hairdryer in a bathtub lol. I THINK kitchens need to be 12-guage too and any built-in appliance must have its own dedicated ciruit (fridge, dish washer, electric stove (well that's 240V anyway) and a microwave, if it's wall mounted like mine is. There must be a GFCI-protected receptacle wired directly to the main breaker next to the main breaker to test for power. My garage has one and unfortunately it's the only outlet in the garage too. We'd like to add another outlet or two but the garage is finished so the new outlet would have to be surface mounted. We cant run it off the existing receptacle either because code specifies that the breaker panel receptacle must be on its own circuit wired directly to the main breaker (well, not directly I guess since it obviously needs its own breaker otherwise it would take 200A to trip and the wire would melt lol)

BTW, did a little digging and turns out that incandescent fixtures CAN be used but they MUST be fully-enclosed (unless they're recessed) and must meet specific clearance requirements to be used. Fluorescent lighting may be used (recessed or surface mount) but these too must meet certain clearance requirements from storage racks and exposed tubes MUST have tube guards (the NPF F40 strips at my cousins' house DO NOT have them! And yep, their house is from 2005 or 2006 I think). This is the 2006 code I'm reading from though so if their house is from 2005 they might not need the guards, but my house has them. Maybe prior to 2006 only certain exposed tube fluorescents needed tube guards... Anyway, all pendant fixtures are strictly prohibited from closets or storage spaces. all fixtures must be surface mounted or recessed.  Here's the article.  (http://www.juneau.org/cddftp/documents/ClosetLights.pdf) A little confusing IMO, but as it turns out, a wall-mounted fluorescent is the only thing that is code-compliant for my closet. My closet is idential to my brother's. And if those closets need fluorescents, it only makes sense to just keep things the same for my parents' closet. My closet is almost the smallest size allowed for it to contain a light fixture. There is 18.5" between the back wall and the fluorecent tube, as the strip is wall-mounted over the door. There is 6.5" horizontally between the shelf and the fluorescent light, so if I were to install an F24T12/HO strip in my closet, it might not meet code, as HO strips are deeper than standard RS/TS ones so the tube would be pushed out closer to the shelf.

That's stupid that they require fluorescent lighting in the kitchen in California. Fluorescents would look terrible in my kitchen since our open-concept kitchen/dining room/living room has a cathedral ceiling sorta like  this picture here,  (http://homesbyhomes.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Modern-Living-Room-Design-with-White-Brick-Fireplace-Glass-Walls-and-Cathedral-Ceiling.jpg) so fluorescents wouldn't look good, although technically a CFL is a fluorescent light so if the contractor was to specify regular fixtures with GU24 sockets, GU24 CFLs could be used and edison screw incandescents wouldn't fit.

Fluorescent lighting is typically seen as "utilitarian" to most people. Generally, it's only used where a lot of light is needed without making the kWh dial spin like a helicopter blade lol. But now with CFLs and LEDs, low power consumption can be achieved by using traditional fixtures. Also, in the contractor's eyes, they want to keep costs down. Keyless ceramic incandescent sockets cost about $2-3 whereas a decent fluorecent fixture costs around $30 and up. Most people aren't paying attention to what kind of basment lighting is present in a house when considering to buy a house so that's the contractor's way of saving money. Nothing is stopping the future home owner from installing linear fluorescents, but like I said earlier, most people probably find it "utilitarian", even wrap lights or cloud/puff fixtures, and probably prefer more compact light sources. If it wasn't for me, my parents probably would have just bought higher-wattage CFLs for dealt with the dim light but now my parents are used to the bright light so they're not going to want to revert back to the "old" when I move out lol.

Eh, I guess I probably should leave linear fluorescents but I can buy a 65W CFL for about $15 at Lowes or Home Depot and get plenty of light at half the cost of a linear fluorescent fixture. I'm not looking to spend a lot of money replacing my own fixtures when I move out on my own lol. As for the T17, it's wired to a remote ceiling-mounted pull chain switch (just a switch, no fixture/socket, which is mounted to a junction box on the ceiling. I'm going to remove the pull-chain switch and replace with with a normal pull-chain incandescent. The T17 will remain up but disconnected (she doesn't use it anyway; I'm the only one who has ever turned it on since my great-grandpa got Alzheimer's in the 90s and eventually passed away a couple years after I was born). This way, when I am ready for it, I can just go in and remove the fixture without doing any rewiring or shutting off any breakers. With the 8ft tandem preheater, it's wired to a plug and it plugs into the wall so I wouldn't need to do any rewiring anyway.

I'm trying to get my great-aunt's basement lights first since they're only 2ft long and can be tucked away in the shed easily. Plus I don't often go over her house since my parents are allergic to her cat lol. I am too but my allergies don't bother me that much. Plus, now that I'll have removed all of her F20T12s on the property, I can take the other half of her stash of KEN-RAD F20/W lamps. :D

After my great-aunt's fixtures, I'll move onto my grandma's/late-grandpa's fluorescents. I'm eyeing a few F32T8 2-lamp wraps at the ReStore to replace the three Western Electric fixtures. Hopefully they're there the next time I go to the ReStore... I already have a F32T8 shoplight to replace the T17 over his desk in the basement. Then there's my cousins' grandma's garage and basement lights... I sorta feel weird asking her if I can replace them though since she's not related to me. Probably the only reason she let me relamp the preheaters was because I had brought the lamps with me when I came over my cousins' house (their houses are joined sorta like an in-law house, but their house was added on to the original house around 2005-2006 and have totally separate basements and what not, though they apparently share the same utilities (they have their own breaker panel but both houses share the same address, same electric meter, etc since it was the only way my aunt and uncle could afford their own home, since prior to that, they were living in a rental home. Their unfinished basement has seven keyless sockets all wired on the same switch. I would have wired them to at least two different switches since the basement could be split into two halfs but whatever... As for my aunt Kerri's and uncle Roger's house (where I got the 1950s long-john preheater and the light for Joe in Ontario) I haven't heard anything new about the remaining three fixtures.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 29, 2014, 08:07:06 PM
BTW, I opened up the "boob light" that has never been opened before and turns out the lamp inside is a Canadian Extended Life Philips 60W soft white marked 9H, that's August 1999! Wowee! Naturally, I took it out and swapped it out for a newer Satco inside frost 57W "energy efficient" incandescent lamp. When I saw the Philips logo I was expecting a 40W DuraMax or something but when I saw that it was a Canadian 60W Philips from the 90s I had to save it! I guess the electrician had some NOS lamps he was using up when he put bulbs in the fixtures. Makes me wonder how old the lamps in the five-lamp chandelier over the stairs are... The electrician seems to have used a mix of Philips and Sylvania lamps, no GEs. Any GEs were put in by us (besides the halogens in the basement, which need to be replaced, there's only one GE incandescent that I'm aware of, a 40W soft white from my late-grandpa's an grandma's dining toom chandeir, as I replaced the four 40W GEs with 43W halogens so they could get more light in there without raising the energy bill a ton. I would have snuck in CFLs to get the CFLs out of my house (LOL) but the fixture's on a dimmer and CFLs can't be used (well inexpensive ones can't and besides, dimmable CFLs don't dim reliably anyway).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 29, 2014, 08:13:11 PM
Interesting, and ironic that it happened to be the website for a city not that far from me!
Nothing is wrong with it at all.  Everything is #12 in my house, except for some #10 in a few places.  Originally stuff was done with black #12 in metal boxes, then white with blue plastic "Carlon" type boxes (Eagle devices I might add) then stuff we've done is either with leftover white or salvaged yellow and blue boxes.  When I saved the yellow stuff I also got some of those "Ideal" type connectors which I much prefer over wirenuts.  My house was originally built, I'd guess, between 1971 and 1979, though I don't know an exact year for sure.  
Some of the code issues my house has though are: (Get ready to laugh)
-No GFCIs in the bathroom/kitchen (No faceplates either actually).  None outside either.  
-Is Romex on an open-beam ceiling a problem, even stapled properly? (It's going to fluorescent wraparounds in my kitchen).
-Breaker panel in the bathroom
-Same panel with all the grounds braided together in a pasta dish of copper.
-Legend on said panel "lying" about some things by now (Though that's less of an issue).
-Holes in the faceplate of same panel where there used to be other breakers and there are now none
-No cable clamps/strain reliefs on said panel where the wires enter/exit
-Romex run about a foot below a ceiling going somewhere (That will eventually be fixed).
-20 amp main breaker, #12 Romex going into panel for a main feed, then some of the branch breakers are 30 amp!
-Romex running along bottom of wall/floor to outlets in plastic boxes without faceplates where they couldn't even be added since the boxes are side-nailed
-No outlets/lights in one room, so I went to a ceramic pullchain light (Without lightbulb, pullchain broken off, and socket shell missing), plugged into it's convenicence outlet (Those alone should be banned IMO), then that's feeding other outlets (I did this one; I know it's wrong but I did it anyway)
-And a few others.  (I know, it sounds really horrible, there's no enforced codes where I live so people can do some really bad hack jobs (I've seen some even better ones).
-And half the original house is fed by one breaker.  Including the main kitchen outlets.
HOWEVER...interestingly enough the self-proclaimed electrician who did the vast majority of my house actually used to live a few houses down the block and I've since met them.  They have some good practices though.  I might add he REALLY liked 4-plex outlets...they're everywhere in my house.  But they sure come in handy when "Wall warts" cover up the other half of the outlet!
So I don't think my electrical system would pass an inspection but it works fine.  I've admittedly done some screwed-up additions too, i.e. no strain relief since I didn't have one.  
Wow, the only person to turn it on since the 90s! How old are the lamps then?
Oh wow! NOS for sure! That's true a lot in my house though since stuff I've collected is installed in parts of the house newer than that fixture/lamp.  For example, the Lithonia slimline is in a room added in 2000.



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 29, 2014, 09:52:18 PM
I forgot to mention I discovered today that radio station I discovered within the last month or so comes in really clearly on the beach in front of my house...I totally discovered it by accident too! I just love those headset radios...I have several.
I also painted a wall in my living room today (Well, Kilz primer over new/unpainted drywall prior to a latex topcoat. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 29, 2014, 10:33:14 PM
Gee, you really have some crazy hack jobs in your house! lol Fortunately a lot of them sound like easy fixes. Just gotta get some face plates and GFCIs and that right there solves half your issues lol. If you have multiple gauge wires on the same circuit you can add that to the list of violations since code says you must use the same guage wire for any given circuit. Since you're off-grid, the code really doesn't apply to you but it's not a bad idea to try and ahere to it. I'll admit with my light fixtures I haven't always used romex clamps on the cords. Normally it's because I don't want to bust off a KO if I don't have to, so I'll feed the cord though a hole meant for mounting the fixture or something lol. If you were to join the grid though, you'd have to bring your house up to code before the utility would even consider adding you onto the grid though.

As for the romex on an open ceiling, no, it's not a code violation, as long as you follow the contour of the beams (don't wire perpeddicular to the beams). But i've seen electricians wire across the beams, so I guess it's not a huge deal... My house doesn't have any wires going across the beams though. The romex goes to the wall/head joist and them runs back out so that the romex is never "suspeneded" between two joists. When I added a keyless socket in my grandparent's basement, I did tack the romex perpendicular to the joists, but there's already a ton of wiring done by an electrician down there that runs across the beams.

Why do you think they should take the receptacles off the pull-chain fixtures? The F90T17 lamps in my great-aunt's T17 are GE F90T17/CWs, with the GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC etch, from the 80s or before. They're identical to the lamp in my grandpa's T17 so those were probably the lamps in it when they were initially removed.

I should add that the Philips lamp has a horizontal straight filament, supported in the middle and at the two ends.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 30, 2014, 12:18:45 PM
I didn't know the thing about multiple-guage wires...honestly that seems a little stupid IMO.  I can see using, say, #10 at the beginning, but if you added an outlet shouldn't #12 suffice, or #14 for a light fixture onto that at an even later date? Yeah it doesn't really apply but I agree it should be followed, particularly if I ever tried to get fire insurance, or I might have to upgrade things in order to sell my house.  It was a dump when we moved in but I imagine there was some sort of a clause about it being "unlivable" at the time (It had been empty for 8 years). 
In addition to no cable clamps/strain reliefs, the other somewhat-bad thing I will admit to doing is using 2-prong cords for some things that should really have 3.  Case in point, any rapid/trigger start fluorescent light I've found is wired like that by me LOL.  Is a ground required for a slimline to start reliably? In freezing temperatures (Granted, with 60w lamps) mine only lights the primary side lamp at partial brightness.  I've touched it before and had it come on though.  With only one lamp lit it doesn't flicker as wildly though! It gets usably bright but flickers like crazy at temps below about 60 degrees, and below about 50 it never warms up. 
Not sure about the code thing there, part of me wants to say (And I might even bring this up in such a case) that such things that were considered violations were done before the grid came through and should thus be grandfathered in, though I agree any new work should be up to or exceeding code and might need a permit taken out and later inspected. 
My mom's ex-husband (from before my dad) was trying to sell his house last year and they ran into a problem: building permits for various things had been taken out years ago by the previous owner when some remodeling/rennovating was done but had never been inspected/signed off and I'm pretty sure they made him take his house off the market until these issues were fixed...my comment was, what are they going to do? Tear up the drywall to inspect the insulation, vapor barrier, wiring and plumbing? LOL.  They were able to find some of the signed-off permits eventually I think though. 
My dad's girlfriend's house was a totally different story (and it was on grid too).  One of the previous owners/renters had done some excellent hack jobs.  It was a singlewide mobile home with a wanigan (addition for extra living/storage space added onto one side).  In addition to itself being far from code I'm sure, the wiring in there was pretty unique: first of all it was controlled off the light switch for what had been the porch light before that was added (So you could literally turn off a whole room).  Also it was done with black SJTW-looking wire which had no boxes (ceramic pullchain lights with wires going between bottom of shelf and ceramic fixture, no box), lamp "zip" cord going to a doorbell transformer I think, you get the idea.  And this was connected to the grid but obviously done under-the-radar and I'm sure it would instantly fail any sort of inspection. 
Sounds typical of Philips lamps of that era, they really liked to use horizontal filaments.  Can you post a pic of this particular specimen?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 30, 2014, 08:23:32 PM
So I just talked to my godparents (M-400A) and the streetlight (a 400w HPS  FCO something) on a major intersection near their house is still out! (It was cycling this time last year and was the source of an inside joke all it's own; we were joking I could turn off all the streetlights since whenever we'd drive/walk under/by them they'd go out! (That town simply had a lot of cyclers but we made fun of it).  Anyway it apparently totally died around Daylight Savings' end (Oh, great! When it's needed most!) and my godmother reported it and 2+ months later it's STILL out!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on December 30, 2014, 10:29:13 PM
The the guage thing is mostly for clarification that EVERYTHING must be the same guage on a circuit, which covers gowing from a thicker wire to a thinner wire and also from a thinner wire to a thicker one. I guess it gets rid of any confusion, both at the person doing the wiring (they know that no matter what, the guage size must be the same and don't have to remember which direction they can change the gauge) and also for the inspector. It eliminates confusion for the inspector since they can look quickly and see that everything is uniform.

Eh don't worry, I wire ungrounded cords onto things that should be grounded too. I'm also guilty of using a grounded cord but simply "capping off" the ground wire inside the fixture isntead of attaching it to a screw in the fixture because I'm too lazy to either add a screw or loosen the ballast bolt to wedge the ground wire between the fixture and ballast case, which I often do if there's no spare screw. I would say that ground probably isn't needed for slimlines because they're not a rapid start system. For HOs, a ground might be useful but I doubt the lights at my grandpa's shop (aside from the troffers in the office, which was done in the 70s) are grounded and his HOs and slimlines start fine. Ah we extended our deck and we didn't even go to the city for a permit lol. Hopefully it doesn't bite us in the ass later on but a permit seemed like a waste of money for such a small project in our opinions. If you were to join the grid, you would definitely have to bring your house up to code in relation to its age (if your house was built in the 80s you'd have to bring it up to at least the 80s code and if you have an addition put on in the early 2000s, you'd probably have to make that addition comply with the codes of that time). Beyond that, I don't know. The utility or fire marshal would probably require an inspection to make sure there are no crazy violations.

Sounds like I need to mail your godparents a 400W HPS lamp (I have a couple) lol.

OK, I was at my Great Aunt's house today and repalced those last outlets. I also disconnected the T17 and replaced the "Mega Pullchain" as I call it, with a pullchain incandescent. She's getting the ceiling re-done in the garage so I removed the reflector from the T17 fixture and stuck it in the tool shed for now. The lamps are still in the disconnected fixture. An inside-etch GE and an outside etch GE, both with the GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC etch. Once is EOL, not sure which one. Damn those things are huge!

I replaced both of the F20T12 Western Electric fixtures, the pull-chain one with a pull-chain incandescent, and the switch-controlled one with a 2X F32T8 fixture. She's very, very happy with the F32T8 fixture. It's very BRIIIGHT! It's got two GE SPX35 lamps (the 2006 ones from school, just like the garage strips have) and a Sylvania LBF ballast. Despite low ballast factor, the thing really is bright! Lights that whole section of the basement nicely. As for the WE fixtures, both needed a good cleaning, especially the pull-chain one. Three KEN-RAD lamps were distributed among the fixtures and one GENERAL (GE) ELECTRIC inside etch F20T12/WHITE lamp. In total, I came home with six F20T12s, three KEN-RAD F20/W lamps, one NOS Sylvania F20/CW from the 90s (with mis-aligned endcaps- GRR!), one GE F20/W, and one KEN-RAD F20/CW lamp. Not sure why there was one KEN-RAD cool white, since all the other half-dozen KEN-RAD lamps I originally got were whites but whatever...

The switch-controlled WE fixture looks as if it was NOS when it was installed. No tarnishing on the aluminum reflectors and no surface rust stains on the fixture. The reflectors are flawless and shiney. I cleaned both out and they were made by Day-Brite lighting, like my grandpa's F40 WE lights, as opposed to the third F20 WE light from the tool shed, which was made by Pittsburg Reflector Co. The Day-Brite ones have GE sockets too instead of Bryant, though the sockets are identical other than the brand. The fixtures are identical to the Pittsburg one too. The Day-Brite fixture ballasts are both GE HPF Bonusline ballasts, marked FA, meaning June 1965! The ballasts have yellow labels and non-reseting thermal protection. Fortunately, GE was quick to ditch cloth wiring, so the ballasts have nice and plyable rubber-insulated wires.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 31, 2014, 03:26:58 PM
Yeah I know they made it mandatory certain guages be certain colors so a house inspector could easily ID them. 
I've only correctly grounded a fluorescent once...that Lithonia "basket" wraparound.  In that case I wrapped the ground wire around a drywall screw securing the fixture into the wood subfloor above.  There's a pic of it somewhere in my gallery. 
My Bonusline-ballasted Sears shoplight is done like you describe: a ground wire underneath the ballast case.  But the cord is spliced with a 2-prong plug, so...BTW every one of those Sears shoplights I've ever seen (They're like the fixture equivalent of a Mainlighter, Lifeline, or Westy blackender, AKA vintage but common) is either hardwired or has a spliced cord of aftermarket plug of some sort, leading me to think maybe they came without plugs? IDK but it makes sense.  The ones from the shop were I'm building the knife block had no cords whatsoever, they were hardwired. 
LOL if it's an issue just tear the extension off if you guys  decide to sell the house or something...problem solved!
If you're gonna do that, you'll need quite a few, in various wattages, since there were a LOT of cyclers in that town...that's why it was the butt of an inside joke and so hilarious, we'd drive under them and they'd go out! And their garage door opener would never close if I was there, it would go down, stop, and go back up.  (But that was often the cat's fault, (In fact one of my mom's cats), he'd see it closing and try to run under it, sending it back up.
But I have a 400w Sylvania new in sleeve I could send LOL...and both times I went to the ReStore nearby I looked for a 250 watter for the M-400A.  I should've checked the Home Depot nearby but never thought of it LOL.

When are you actually taking the T17 light? Soon I hope? Even if not start hunting for lamps now, they're only getting harder to find aren't they? Didn't GE quit making them, and they were the last to make them anyway?
Was the Sylvania in a WE fixture? Careful-the GE might be beryllium...I think the consensus on LG was that the Ken-Rads weren't but I dunno about the GE...so be careful!
Are the HPF ballasts rated ONLY for 20w lamps? Did you bring the 2' stuff home yet?
Yeah you'll have a very well-lit house someday for sure. 



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 31, 2014, 05:45:22 PM
I'm thinking the Sear Shoplights didn't come with plugs. My harmony house shoplite from my grandpa's shop's bathroom had a wire-on plug (ungrounded). My Power Lighting Products (or whatever the company is called) shoplight says that a grounded cord must be added to the shoplight. So apparently it didn't even come wired with a cord, but has no KOs, so it HAS to be wired to a cord or at least have the romex shoved through the cord hole lol.

I don't know when I'm taking the T17 fixture TBH. It's not going anywhere so I have time. The thing is really cumbersome too; a real b!tch to take down. I don't know what to expect weight-wise for the upper housing. I would have taken the whole thing down but I can't take it now anyways so it would only sit in her garage or the tool shed anyway. The light is hard-mounted, so it's going to be REAL fun trying to take that thing down! I told Joe that if he comes down into the RI area sometime from Canada I will have this T17 set aside for him, since I've come to the conclusion that I don't need both. One is enough for me, since I'd only use it for display. That will leave me with four lamps for the one fixture. I told him I'd supply starters but no lamps. The reflector is porcelained on both sides. The louvered door is painted steel (which needs to be repainted) and the top housing is painted steel too (in pretty good condition from what I could tell). The ballast is a massive GE, with half the label pretty black, but the wires seemed flexible for the most part. The fixture is missing both endcaps unfortunatle, though the grandpa's has both and they're just plain-old flat steel like a modern fixture (but 10 times thicker lol) so they should be fairly easy to replicate.

Yeah I really should find some lamps but I can't afford an entire case of lamps and even the selling price for one of two lamps would backrupt me lol. Fortunately my late-grandpa has the foresight to buy two spare tubes for his fixture (although the original tube he put in it when he installed it ended up outliving him...) so I have two never-been-used lamps. His T17 has one working lamp installed in it and my great-aunt's has two lamps but one EOL, so that leaved four working tubes total. And if I give Joe my great-aunt's T17, I will have four tubes for my grandpa's T17, which I'll keep (not taking that down for a WHILE; that one will be even harder in their dark basement with new AC air ducts vitrually surrounding the fixture on all sides and god help me if the T17 is wired to the same breaker as the rest of the basement lol) Yep, GE quit making them, meaning no more T17s are made. Funny how the T17s evaded all the lamp bans. GE just quit making them due to low demand. I guess whatever place had a ton of them left in service (to keep the demand in place) upgraded to T8 or closed its doors...

The Sylvania is NOS, a spare in the basement. The GE is from the 60s or 70s, definetely not the toxic phosphors (it's really a F20T12/W lamp reading right off the etch but I shortened it to F20/W). Fortunately I don't have any toxic phosphorse fluorescent lamps. My earliest lamp, the Daylight GE lamp, is an early halophosphate. No, the ballasts are rated for F20T12s, F15T12s, and F15T8s. Not rated for F14T12s. The ballast is rated at 0.44A, so probably around full-power. With the reflectors the lamps are really bright but without the reflector the lamps aren't as bright lol (just not as much light reflected). And yes, I brought home both F20 fixtures and washed them out. See LG for pics. 8) The only fluorescent stuff left at my great-aunt's is the 8ft tandem F40 preheater with the loud ballast(s) and the T17 fixture. (well then there's the F32T8s; the fixture I put up in the basement and the two strips I converted to T8 in the garage, but I'm not interested in getting those back). I might have to leave the 8ft tandem fixture behind since I cannot take it until I get my own place. I know my mom wouldn't allow it in the house, and there's really no place I could put it. Oh how I wish I lived in a ranch house with a nice big unfinished basement. :( The T17 at her house is coming home with me no matter what, just not at least until the summer.

So now I guess the next "phase" of "Operation Obtain" would be my grandma's/late-grandpa's house, so the four F40/RS WE fixtures and ultimately the T17 fixture. Probably can't fit both T17s though so I'd get my great-aunt's first and then my late-grandpa's, since I can get to my grandparents' house easily if something were to happen. I'm eying a few mint condition F32T8 wrap lights at the ReStore. If they're there next time I go, I'll grab three of them, which will replace the F40T12 WE lights. My luck they won't be there... I want three identical lights to replace the WE garage lights so I hope at least three are left. I will have to take apart the WE lights to remove them though lol. The F20s weigh as much as a typical F40/RS shoplight so the F40 WE fixtures must weigh a ton! I'll literally just take them apart while they're installed (take off the hinged covers, socket brackets, and ballast) and them just remove the top housing with the endcaps on lol. The fixtures are hard-mounted to the drywall ceiling and wired through the ceiling via a KO on the top.

When I installed the F32T8 shoplight in my great-aunt's basement, I had her hold the other end up with a broom stick (she stood on the floor holding a broomstick against the fixture lol) while I screwed in my end (with the ballast) and then I screwed in her end of the fixture. The F32T8 fixture was pretty easy to install since it already had holes for a 16"OC ceiling joist mount and the electronic ballast is a feather compared to a big magnetic brick ballast.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on December 31, 2014, 08:38:17 PM
Oh I've seen plenty of el-cheapo F40/RS shoplights with "Romex just shoved through the hole".  Yeah those Metalux/Gibson troffers I have were also "fun" to remove, in part since we had the wonderful privelage of doing so with the power on!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on December 31, 2014, 09:51:59 PM
Ah with the Gibson troffers, to shut the power off, just short the hot and neutral and watch how fast the breaker trips lol. Wait, why didn't you just turn off the switch? How many people did it take to remove the light? I usually mount my lights alone, that's why I like the suspend them. Suspending them and having them plug in makes it really easy to swap fixtures too!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 01, 2015, 01:01:27 AM
Should've done that actually! But we didn't, especially since all the OTHER lights were on the same breaker.  In hindsight we should have at least shut off the wall switch but oh well, no harm, no foul.  It took two of us...first of all the lamps are a PITA to install/remove in those (By now I have it mastered though).  Then we spent an eternity trying to get the channel covers off...I think we used a flathead screwdriver and they were very stubborn! (Meanwhile the ballasts behind them were still warm, buzzing, and of course powered).  Finally, after getting the first channel cover off and being greeted with an Advance Kool-Koil I decided they were worth taking home with me.  The other one (A PITA too) had the perfect Universal Therm-O-Matic ballast, still used daily at my house.  I mainly grabbed the fixtures for their ballasts but ended up saving them and making one of them a 3-lamper.  The fixtures were held up with those annoying drywall toggle bolts, which let go at inopportune times (Actually happened with two of the very same fixtures a couple years before that, they fell while being worked on (they had started sagging before that) and from what I hear a lamp or two broke too...did I mention this room's main purpose has been a kindergarten/1st grade-ish classroom? My school has it all, mercury thermostats, PCB ballasts, T12s (And F40CWs still in use), you get the idea.  I think mercury thermostats and PCB ballasts are technically illegal in public school buidings but considering it was built in 1979 and 1985 and not much updating done since it's all still there and in daily use.  Only bad thing is the dozens of magnetic  ballasts buzzing loudly can actually be annoying at time...you don't hear that sound as often nowadays though!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 01, 2015, 11:39:14 AM
Why were they being removed? Were they upgraded to T8 or something? Or did you steal the fixtures? :P LOL

I probably would have shut off the switch (even if all the other lights went out too) and then plugged in a worklight or used a flash light (I always bring a flashlight or a home made "work light" with me when I know I'll be doing any electrical work just in case). Then after shutting off the switch, remove the tubes, balalst channel cover, and then disconnected the leads and wrapped them (individually) in tape. Then turn the power back on so I have a ton of light and remove the fixture. I'm too much of a wimp to even relamp with the power on lol. I always shut the power off before changing lamps or doing any work on the fixture. I don't like to relamp incandescent fixtures if I don't know if the power is on or off because I'm afraid of getting burned, since those lamps heat up fast. That's why I hate those 2-pole switches, since you can't tell if the light is on or off, since up doesn't necessarily mean the light is on. With my hallway light, if both switches are the same way (either both up or down) the light is on and if one is up and one's down, the light is off. But with my staircase light (three pole switches) there wouldn't really be a way to tell for sure, since with three switches, a number of random combinations are possible.

I don't see the big deal about mercury thermostats, afterall, the vial is pretty well "buried" inside the unit. It's not like some little kid is going to pull the entire thing off the wall and start chomping on it lol. My house is from 2003 and it has a mercury thermostat! It says CONTAINS MERCURY - MANAGE PROPERLY and is for controlling the heat and AC. I find the mercury thermostats much easier to use. My cousins' house from 2005/2006ish has a digital thermostat and I have no idea how to work that thing. Mine is easy, just turn the dial to adjust the temperature to what you want! The bottom needle reads the current indoor air temperature and the top needle tells you what you have the temperature set at.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 01, 2015, 04:37:10 PM
It was during a remodel, the lights were removed and nothing put in their place. 
I've gone to remove a few broken-off incandescents before thinking the power was off with damp rubber gloves...BANG and sparks and scaring the crap out of people around me, though!
Wow, in a house from 2003? That's cool actually!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 01, 2015, 05:32:09 PM
Ahh I see. How many fixtures were removed totally?

Yeah that's why I was surprised they're not made anymore. It's possible that maybe it doesn't have mercury and that they had just never upgraded the housing (since the message is embossed in the plastic housing) but I doubt that. The thermostat is a Honeywell.

BTW, I have now mounted all three of the Western Electric F20 fixtures! The like-NOS one is suspended in the laundry room and the pull-chain one is mounted vertically on the wall in the utility room, a few studs to the left of the original WE fixture I got, which is mounted the same way. The lamps in the pull-chain one are a pair of used Sylvania F20T12/CW Canadian lamps with different etches (one etch has smaller printing than the other)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 01, 2015, 09:10:58 PM
Two, which I got.  If there'd been more I'd have saved ballasts though!
Nice! What would be really appropriate is to put all 4 4' ones in your garage!
Took down the outside Christmas lights today and tomorrow plan to do the tree.  I might leave up the 2 strings of LED multis though since they draw less than 3w each, they make great nightlights! (one upstairs and one downstairs).
Still researching those old army trucks, kinda interested in eventually owning one of those if I ever move back to CA or something (A possibility I'm considering, I wouldn't mind double-siting again, after doing it for so long I miss the change of scenery/pace.    But I'd need a place to park it...I want a larger, more rural place anyway, kinda like you've described Mike.  Mine here is already that way, though it could be a little bigger actually...I still have a neighbor next door about 100' away. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 01, 2015, 11:04:14 PM
LOL not the garage i have right now. I will probably end up installing the F20s and F40s together some place. Maybe the F20s on one switch and the F40s on another and have a pattern, F40, F20, F40, F20, F40, F20, and F40?

We took down the tree and other indoor decorations today. The lights are still up but are unplugged. Might take them down tomorrow or at least some.

Would be cool if you moved to the East coast. :P ;D Talk about a change of scenery lol. I don't have any plans to move really far away. I'd like to stay in the New England/Northeast area but might end up leaving Rhode Island. There are some nice spacious lots right here in Cranston though, but property taxes are insane in RI.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 02, 2015, 07:40:27 PM
At one point I was looking at a school in East Haddam, CT, and then I woud've been really close by!
One of the redeeming qualities about my current place of residence is no property taxes! I think it's common to want to stay where you grew up...in my case it would be going back to CA. 
Getting a brand new 3000w Honda generator this week too...should be a nice upgrade from the 2000w version which is sorta wearing out and it'll be a nice band-aid until the exhaust on my 10Kw diesel one gets rewelded.  (I can hardly wait for that day). 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 02, 2015, 11:20:21 PM
Ah yeah that's just an hour and 20 minutes from me! No property taxes? Wow! Do you pay any taxes of any sort (other than maybe a public water supply fee)?

Ahh now you can run more lights. ;D With a 10KW one you can put up street lights on you whole road and run then off that lol. (they have those MH construction lights where there's 4 1000W MHs and they're powered off a generator, ever seen those on DOT worksites or at a temporary carnival?


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 04, 2015, 07:07:17 PM
Nah just a ridiculously expensive $100/year (sarcasm) for city water.  Pretty cheap once you're set up out here...if not it gets pricy though. 
More lights? Yeah, or at the same time as other things.  My clothes washer sure is a lot happier, that's for sure.  (The spin cycle starting to move those wet clothes often overloaded my 2000w one.).  But not as often will I have fun with other people over at the same time..."will it do it will it do it will it make it" as the lights dim to less than half brightness and it struggles...it's breaker trips after 5 seconds.  Then I'd just say some profanity and go out and reset it...
One of my relevations was the first time I used a skillsaw on regular grid power...it jumps when you depress the trigger as opposed to slowly ramping up!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 04, 2015, 08:59:51 PM
 We get billed monthly based on consumption.  (http://www.provwater.com/depts/cs/billrates.htm) Looking at those prices, water looks a lot cheaper than I thought! $2.88 per 100 cubic feet (748 gallons). Plus a monthly charge for "service" based on the meter size. I don't know the size of our meter or even where it is so I couldn't answer it lol.

Ah I never operated one off-grid so I didn't know that. Yeah it even makes me jump when I go to use one lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 07, 2015, 08:59:39 PM
Your house is probably 1", or at least that's what mine is.  I have a meter but I'm not billed monthly on consumption so I wouldn't know since I never check it, though I have had to go in there to shut it off at the meter before. 
My friend's Delta UniSaw (Which the Bonusline-ballasted Sears shoplight once hung right over) "struggles" to start when cold, even on an 8Kw generator! Granted, it's wired with #12 Romex the whole way, which probably doesn't help.  (Did I mention the shop and house are also fed by vintage cartridge and screw-in glass fuses?)  For my dad's "Ridgid" (Home Depot contractor type) table saw on one of those litttle 2000w Honda generators the breaker will trip if you push too hard on a stubborn knot LOL...you have to go easy and slow. 
The streetlight near my godparents' house finally got fixed...she emailed me once she noticed...they're pretty happy even though you can't see it from their house. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 08, 2015, 06:40:25 PM
1" sounds reasonable. I think the pipe feeding my hot water tank (well, the pipe that the hot water feed pipe branches off of) is 1". The rest of the house is 1/2" I think. It's cool that the how water pipes remain shiney while the cold water pipes loose their luster after a while. It makes it easier to tell which is hot and which is cold.

We have a SawStop table saw in the shop but it's wired for 208V, not 120V. We also have another table saw and a radial arm saw, both of which are older. No idea what voltage or wattage those are. I only know the SawStop is 208V because someone wrote "208v" on the condit elbow that comes out of the concrete floor.

Ah the light has been fixed! ;D Glad that it didn't need to be replaced. On my street, almost all the lights have recently been relamped. Pole 5 got a new lamp in 2012 IIRC. Pole 3 is an entirely new light, for whatever reason, from 2013 IIRC. Pole 6, 8, and 10 were relamped this year. Pole 2 I'm unsure of, since I can't see it from my house. I've seen it cycle before (a few years back) so I know it's been relamped since then because I don't see it cycle anymore. Pole 4 has a photocell from 2010 (since it was shut off in 2010 like the one in front of my house. When they turned the lights back on, they got new PCs but kept the old lamps) but I don't know how old the lamp is. It's not the original lamp though, as far as I know, since the refractor isn't a typical squarish GE one which would be on all the M-250R2s. Then there's the last light, on pole 12. It was relamped several years ago, but it's old enough where it still has an older pinkish-orange lamp instead of a yellowish-orange lamp (so it was relamped before 2008-09) and still has an older brown PC with a later turn-off light level (shuts off later in the morning), which were last used around 2009-ish as well.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 09, 2015, 12:06:56 AM
And with "PEX crap" you can color-code your plumbing from when it's brand-new!
Those SawStop saws seem kinda violent and unpredictable IMO from what I'm told (Blade suddenly dropping into a metal enclosure and stopping instantly) though I've never seen one in person.  
Not sure how it was fixed, for all I know it could have easily been replaced with an "illuminated waffle iron" LOL. (I'm personally in favor of HPS>LED or HPS>induction conversions since it brings back the whiter light of the MV days).  But not replacing MV! (Unless the ballast, etc. totally fails or the light is missing major parts).  


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 09, 2015, 05:52:04 PM
Yeah but with copper you can tell but it's more subtle. :P In general, I associate metal with quality and plastic with crap lol. I'm sure both have their advantages, I'm just a copper guy since it's what I'm used to lol.

I think they'd know if it was replaced with an LED because the light would be white and not orangey. I agree to a degree. I like the whiter light, but there's something about that sherbet-colored orange snow that I'll miss lol. It's not so much the HPS itself that I'll miss though (although it does have nostalgia with me, since the areas I've lived in have been almost all HPS). I will miss the cobrahead fixtures that I've grown up seeing and also the experience of watching a light warm up for the night. The new LED fixtures look hideous. If they made LED fixtures out of existing cobrahead shells then I wouldn't mind LEDs.

The big things I dislike about the LEDs is the ugly fixture designs replacing all the nice looking cobrheads and also the fact that there will be so much waste as a result of changing all the lights. All those perfectly-working lights being scrapped for no other reason than being "outdated". It's a terrible thought, at least for me.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 09, 2015, 09:28:49 PM
Yeah I know what you mean by that...metal generally seems like it's better quality.
I don't care for the snow effect even! But MV and snow is cool with me.  I don't really even care for the "look" of cobraheads (I find them ugly and utilitarian) but the LED fixtures are even uglier IMO.  I like "NEMA" or "Gumball" or "Teardop" style fixtures better, although the dark sky people ARE right in that they DO leak a lot of light upwards...my 175w MV yardblaster sure lights the trees pretty well!
Yeah LED retrofits of existing cobras would look a little better.  I also was fascinated as a kid by the MV or MH or HPS warmup cycle (And still am).  I still wait for streetlights or private area lights to turn on at dusk so I can watch the warmup process.  (Or restrike after a power interruption). 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 10, 2015, 11:38:46 AM
Yeah MV-lit snow is cool, especially with clear MV! But HPS does induce a warmer feeling. When I look outside at the HPS light in front of my house, the warm light makes me feeling better if I wake up from a bad dream or something. MV contributes to the eerie feeling (like the lights when I'm at my grandparents' house, whose street was all 100W MV M-250R1s, but the light got replaced with HPS).

I love cobraheads. I like NEMAs with the bucket refractors but only for rural area private property lights, not for street lighting. There are some places in the mid west with 175W MV NEMA heads for street lights in residential areas and it looks tacky IMO. Like they were too cheap to buy more expensive cobraheads. I'm actually not a huge fan of gumballs or teardrops. Sure I like them, but I prefer clamshells and cobraheads more. I don't actually find them utilitarian at all. Its the LEDs that I find utilitarian. At least cobraheads have character to them. They might not be "decorative" but they're certainly not all utilitatian. If anything, clamshells are more utilitarian with their exposed reflectors and bare-minimal metal construction (though the metal was very thick) but at the time, clamshells fit in with a lot of the chrome used in cars in the 50s and 60s (well more so the 60s and 70s) so at the time, the exposed metal reflectors probably weren't considered utilitarian at the time. I love my OV-10IB and I would love to get an OV-20 to go with it and also I'd like to get a GE Form 400 PowerPack (with an internal 400W MV ballast).

As for the older NEMA style fixtures, I prefer radial waves or admiral's hats (they must be incandescent though) and I like the bucket style refractor for HID and I like the "Hi-Fi needle" (gumball with a cone-shaped refractor) fixtures with MV.

Well, if you don't like cobraheads (which is fine, a lot of older collectors don't like them either since they replaced the older style clamshells and NEMA-style fixtures) I guess if you come eastward, you should bring your M-400A. :P :D I'll give you a few fluorescent goodies in return and it'll be a trade. ;D BTW, did you ever figure out if it works or not? Next time you visit your godparents, open up the light and take pics of the inside. If there's a lamp inside, that will tell you the wattage. Even if there's no etch on the lamp anymore, the length of the arctube will tell the wattage, as 200-400W HPS lamps have the same sized outer envelope but different sized arc tubes, the length being greater for higher-wattage lamps of course.

Yeah the warm-up process is the most interesting part of HIDs IMO. I also like the variations in equipment (different lamps have slightly different coloring, different lamps start differently than others, etc) which LEDs and other non-HID sources lack. You will never get better lamp distribution than you do from a drop lens cobrahead though. FCO doesn't distribute as well and NEMA lights with bucket refractors light up the trees better the ground, as you said. Vertical lamps work best for "TYpe 5" distribution, which is even 360-degrees of light, basically a round circle of light. Type IV, is slightly narrower, with less light across the behind the street and more light in the street. Type III allows more light up and down the street and not as much off the street.  Type II is like Type III but narrower, allowing even more light down the street but less across the street. Type I is rare. It exists as a designation, but I've never seen it used or available in a fixture.

Type II is the most common for street lighting. It allows minimal light trespass into properties along the street and lights further up and down the street, allowing the lights to be further apart. Type III is used more on main streets with multiple lanes of travel, where the road is wider and where it may be useful to illuminate some property along the street (i.e. sidewalks). With Type III, lights must be closer together though to minimize dark spots on the roadway between fixtures. Type IV, although sort of uncommon, is used on big roads with lots of lanes or where there are a lot of pedestrians, such as downtown, where they basically want the whole city to be lit up lol. Type IV has an avantage over Type V because it allows slightly more light to go up and down the street and makes an oval-shapped patter as opposed to a circle. Type V is typically used with NEMA head fixtures. You can ONLY get Type V (perfect-circle illumination) from a vertical lamp. A horizontal lamp won't allow Type V distribution. Type V is used for area lighting, like on private property where the whole area is supposed to be lit evenly. With NEMA heads with bucket refractors, Type II and III distributions can be achieved from the bucket refractor itself. The refractor has special prisms that redirect the light into an assymetric oval-shaped pattern. Horizontal lamps (cobraheads) are much more efficient at this though, with tighter beam control.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 10, 2015, 01:42:49 PM
It does "feel" warmer I guess.  Another nice thing about HPS (One of it's few redeeming qualities IMO besides less power usage than MV) is it's excellent contrast.  It "Cuts" through fog and percipitation much better than MV or MH or LED.  A really common application for 400w and 1000w HPS floods (For 1000w there's a certain Wide-Lite 11-degree model that's common) is on boats here...you can "see" through fog, snow, rain, etc. much better. And it's amazing what a 1000w HPS can light up half a mile away! I've tried taking pics of this but they don't usually turn out too well.
Yeah seeing NEMAs does seem "Cheap" as opposed to cobras and whenever I see a cobra on a house I think "Does an electrician live there?" In fact, I know of an electrically-oriented person with a 100w HPS cobra on their garage/shop, an old neighbor.  If you like preheat and rapid start and 8' slimlines (As I do), you would have liked their house.  It was there that I saw the blinky statup of many circline and PL adapters as a child, as well as the flickering of 60w cool white slimlines.  I also saw my first spent preheat lamp flashing endlessly there, a PL13 or PL9 most likely.  He's still around and into off-grid hydropower at his other place...we still occasionally drive up there and visit. 
As for clamshells, I don't really care for them either, though if I found one I would grab it nonetheless and probably pass it on to a fellow collector. 
I like the bucket-style refractor for HID too, but never was that "turned on" by radial waves, though here again if I found one I'd save it and give it to another collector. 
LOL I've thought about doing a cross-country trip, but I'd probably start at the east coast and move westward.  But if I did I'd try to meet up in person and bring it over.  It doesn't have a lamp (That's why I can't tell) but there's a faded-to-silver "25" NEMA tag, and there's a circuit-board-looking thing inside, which to me says HPS ignitor. As I recall (Last time I looked inside was a year and a half ago, and the last time I saw it a year ago) there were two "transformer" coils (So multi-wattage?) and a capacitor (So maybe multitap CWA)? I don't remember any loose wires for unused taps though, but here again I simply don't remember anymore.  So 250w HPS I bet.  We looked at how to wire it up but had trouble since all the labels with wiring diagrams and specs were too rotten.  (It sat outside upside down (refractor facing sky) for years under a tree so it was full of leaves, bugs, etc.).  So I haven't tried, though I looked for a 250w HPS lamp at the nearby ReStore.  Not sure when I'll be in that area next though.  I've thought about spending next year there for school, in which time I would probably be able to get it operational.  At the time when I was told I could have it I still lived down there part-time and I should've brought it home (Though it would've ended up back at my godparents' after my mom died, that's where I have everything in storage right now).  At that time though (That was in June 2013) I considered making it 175w MV instead with an area light ballast I could probably keep an eye out for at ReStore. It'd take some fitting though I think.   If you wanted it someday, would you want it cleaned up and working for sure I assume? Even for me that'd be a fun project.  Some people have project vehicles, I have project fixtures...just set aside for a later restoration project as time/money/energy/knowledge of the topic allows. 
Never knew there were different "types" of distribution patterns, though it makes sense. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 10, 2015, 05:51:59 PM
Clear mercury is also good at cutting through fog. MH, /DX MV, and fluorescent aren't good because the latter two are diffused and also they have peaks in different parts of the spectrum, whereas HPS and clear MV peak mostly in the red and blue, respectively.

On a rainey night though, forget it. HPS is totally useless lol.

Yeaah NEMAs actually are cheaper too. Sometimes by quite a bit too. But they're really not great fixtures. It was a great concept back in the day (where people believes that blinding garebombs detered criminals and kepts streets safer) but now it's fallen out of favor towards FCO cobraheads in a lot of places. Up in NH, I was talking with an oldtimer a few years back and he said the village where we stayed had all 175W MV GE NEMA heads installed in the mid-60s (well, I gathered the wattage and brand myself) but in the very late 80s to very early 90s, they replaced them with 100W HPS M-250A2s. Now the NHE Co-Op is starting to use LEDs. According to their site, they're supposed to install only LEDs and replace the HPS fixtures upon needing serviceing. So far the only LEDs up there are PAL lights (private area lights aka NEMA heads) but a little further north they've installed LED street lights.

I've never seen a cobrahead on anyone elses private property before. Even yardblasters are rare here. People don't seem to like HID much here, probably because the units cost more. The HIDs from the big box stores are junk anyway. If you go to that place again, could you take a pic of the guy's cobrahead? Is it a M-250A2 (like those HPS cobraheads at the dock you saw)? If you make the trek eastward, ask him if you can take it with you lol. ;D

Yep, it's 250W HPS. The circuit board thing is the igniter. It should have been on a reddish/maroon plastic or white plastic. Reddish plastic igniters were used by GE until around 1978-ish, so if it has a NEMA tag and a reddish plastic igniter, it's from the late 70s. If white plastic igniter, it's an early-to-mid 80s unit. Was the ballast mounted to the top of the fixture or to the door with black disconnect plugs? If to the door, it's a M-400A Powr/Door but if to the top, it's just a M-400 like my 400W MV version. I don't know why they used "A" for the Power/Doors. I would have used P or PD for "Powr/Door™"...

Just two coils? Sounds like a reactance ballast. CWA ballasts have four coils. If it was a really huge ballast, perhaps it was a CWI ballast. It would depend where the capacitor was wired in the circuit. With reactance (HX) the cap is across the supply leads to boost power factor. With CWI, the capacitor is wired between the coils. With CWA, the capacitor is between the ballast and the white wire going to the lamp. Wiring it up should have been a breeze. There's a terminal block inside and that's where all your connections are made. The terminal with all the white wires is the neutral and if there's a PC socket on the light, the lonely black wire terminal is the 120V hot. If it's not 120V, it would wire up differently though. If it's got a PC socket, odds are that it's 120V. If it was 240V, it probably would use a reactor ballast with a capacitor to correct power factor.

I have a couple of 250W HPS lamps, a GE and an NOS Philips. Actually, I'd prefer it original (maybe the loose stuff blown out with a compressor lol) but as of now, it's your light so you can do whatevr you want with it. :P I'd definitely advise against replacing the ballast though, since unlike fluorescents, HID ballast replacements never seem to fit right lol. You'll always end up with a cockeyed ballast and a mess of wirenuts lol. 175W MV wouldn't light good in a M-400/M-400A either, since the lamp is too small. The lamp shapes are actually designed for certain size fixtures to allow optimal lamp distribution. The ED23.5 and ED28 lamps are designed for cobraheads (BT25 and BT28 designed for NEMA heads or other vertical-lamp installations). If you eventually do come eastward or I go west for some reason (I don't have plans to move out there or even do a roadtrip out west but plans can change) and we did a trade involving the M-400/M-400A I'd still probably take it apart to the bare nuts and bolts and scrub it down and possibly repaint it anyway. It's just what I do lol. I'd prefer the wiring original though. Nah doesn't matter if it works. I can always put a new ballast in, but like I said, it rarely turns out how you want it to lol. Does it have a PC socket? I feel like I've already asked so sorry if it asked already lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 11, 2015, 11:56:28 PM
Yeah but on a rainy/snowy night I'd prefer looking at HPS looking for rocks, floating logs, etc.   
At least they replace lights that need servicing (though otherwise working) instead of replacing perfectly working ones.  If you're going to do an energy saver retrofit, that's the way to do it IMO.  As for more light equalling less crime, the reverse has been proven in other studies too...leaving the lights off deters criminal/drug activity too since they can't see their way around!
I'm one of the only people in my neighborhood with an HID outdoors, and a regular 175w MV yardblaster at that LOL.  It's not in dusk to dawn service though, it's only turned on if I need to read a newspaper in the backyard LOL. 
It might very well be a M-250A2, since this guy was a city engineer at one point.  He lives in the same town (Sitka, AK) as the fixtures at that marina I frequent.  So it's very possible.  I'm so unfamilair with cobras I couldn't say for sure what model it is though, though it was FCO whereas the marina ones had clear polycarbonate "drop"/"sag" lenses.   That whole town is HPS-filled...like 150w ones on every pole on dead-end unpaved residential streets, etc.  The skyglow above Sitka, AK is something else in fog...long before you actually see the actual lights of town out on a boat, etc. you see the orange glow in the clouds.  And they wonder why their electrical grid gets overloaded and blame it on electric heat in everyone's drafty mobile homes.  (That town has a LOT of mobile home parks, it used to be a pulp mill town and I theorize tons of them were brought up on barges from Seattle, etc. for employee housing back in the day). 
This guy also had what I now know to be a MH lowbay in his shop...I was amazed by that thing as a little kid. 

I think the circuit board for the ignitor was reddish.  I THINK the ballast was mounted to the door and I seem to remember member NiMo saying it was a Powr/Door on a pic I posted of it so yeah I think it's a Powr/Door.  I will check on that pic and see. 
It was "big" and had I think two coils, though it may have been two in one or something.  Here again, it's been almost a year since I even LOOKED at the darn thing, much less opened it up so I really don't remember LOL.  Don't even ask where the capacitor was for that very same reason LOL.  It had a terminal block and a photocell socket though and we were hazarding a guess it was 120v but were too chicken to try it LOL.  Closest thing we had to a lamp was a nice vintage /DX 175w Lifeguard in an 80s Regent yardlight which I didn't feel like risking for a test, on an already-incompatible ballast that hadn't been powered up in like 20 years most likely.  Someday if I do try it out it'll be outside on a long extension cord just in case LOL.  (If it's 120v!).  If not I'm just SOL for testing I guess.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 12, 2015, 05:37:31 PM
Hmm this guy sounds really cool! A MH low-bay too eh? I took a little Streetview "Roadtrip" in Sitka. Seems like 100W HPS wouldbe sufficient in mose of those places where the lights are lol. for small sized fixtures, there seem to be a lot of M-250A2s, but only some FCO A2s. There was one 100W HPS M-250R2, but it was a drop lens unit. I saw a few Thomas & Betts 113s and AEL 115s. Saw a good number of M-250R1s too. The M-250A2s were the only ones that some were not 150W HPS. Everything else was only 150W, so my money is on the light being an M-250A2 FCO if I had to hazard a guess... It will be very interesting to see how the sky glow gradually changes from radioactive waste orange to whitish. I've never seen white skyglow, unless you count the WalMart Supercenter near my house. I swear you can see that parking lot from space lol.

Ah! A red-plastic igniter and a NEMA tag dates the light to the late 70s! 8) Considered to be an early HPS fixture (the first HPS street light actually was the M-400A when it came out in 1996 IIRC, but it was only in 400W HPS. Then in 1970 the M-400A became available in 250W HPS as well and the M-250R1 came out (replacing the MV-only M-250R) which was available in 100W HPS. Later in the 70s, 150W HPS and 70W HPS came out. Not sure when 200W HPS came out. 50W HPS actually didn't even become available in street lights until 1980! I am unsure when 200, 310, 750, and 1000W HPS came out. 750W HPS is very rare in a street light. I've actually only heard of it being used regularly in those highmast lights on freeways up in Joe's area.

LOL yeah I know you probably don't remember much about it, especially since you're not really super-interested in HID/street lighting stuff. If it was a HPF F40T12 shoplight you'd probably remember it better, right? ;D I find that it's easier to remember certain things depending on how much I was really interested in it. Ask me what we learned in math class yesterday, I couldn't tell you lol. If the ballast was on the door, the capacitor and igniter would be too, since all the components are on the door. The terminal block would be on the top housing regardless. (GE used a three-terminal block for the Power/Doors and a five-terminal block for the regular single-door fixtures. Also, I re-looked at those pics, yes it's an M-400A because of the latch and screw on the Powr/Door; the M-400s had one or the other, not both.)

Ahh it has a PC socket? That's nice. That means it's likely either 120 or 240V, since PCs are generally used when the light is connected to the power pole. In a parking lot, the light GENERALLY wouldn't have a PC socket, but I've seen instances where they did have PC sockets (and generally they had shorting caps in them, which is essentially a dayburning photocell to bypass the dusk-to-dawn function). I like PC sockets on all my lights in my collection. Not sure why, but a light with no PC socket is much more boring to me. PCs make the lights more interesting IMO, although I typically use shorting caps in my lights since I don't want a dusk-to-dawn feature when the light is being used indoors, but it's always good to have the option available.

Yeah, do not use a 175W MV lamp. You can use a 250W MV lamp, but you need to disconnect the neutral wire to the igniter (or else you'll fry the starting probe in the MV lamp, which will make it dependant on a 250W HPS or 250W PSMH ballast with an external igniter) and you can't use your 100W HPS lamp since 100W lamps have a 55V arc tube and 250W HPS have 100V arc tubes like MV (that's assuming the HPS lamp you have is mogul base and not medium base). the next time you're down there and have access to the light, post some pice of the ballast itself and of the terminal block/wiring. I'll be able to walk you through wiring it up. The Powr/Doors are a little less confusing to wire since it's only the supply lines connected to the terminal block. with my M-400, there's five terminals and only two are actually used for the supply wires lol. The rest are ballast wire connections made at the terminal block instead of using wirenuts.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 12, 2015, 09:03:25 PM
What areas/streets did you "visit"? I'm just wondering what areas of town you got to see so we can compare with what I drive by all the time LOL. (If you don't mind linking to stuff).   Did you see any inductions on some residential streets? I can link to a few things there you might like:

http://www.instantstreetview.com/2ryu3kztqfvwz1uxzn6z2u   This view is very familar to me.  The gas station, I frequent all the time.  Across the street from that, see the big fuel tanks? That place has some abandoned-but dimly-workign HO 8 footers with vintage GE lamps with the big "800" on the etch.  If you look across the water that's a high school I looked at going to.    If you go "up" the street to the left that's part of the marina where I saw those GEs with polycarbonate drop lenses.   The big cement building with the nautical murals is another familar thing to me, we worked for that place, along with the big blue metal building next to it...which is where the tacky Appleton flood retrofit is.  In the streetview though you see some nice dimmed out MVs instead.  Go down that street a little more and see the "Murray Pacific Supply of Alaska" building? That store appeared in a great lighting dream of mine...in the dream they were going out of business and had a bunch of non-marine stuff for sale as part of that...like a case of NOS Norelco F40CWs for 2 bucks! Of course the dream ended when I walked up to the counter with it. 

http://www.instantstreetview.com/2ryresztqkd6z1jyzqxz2u   Here you see a case of (IMO) a really bad case of energy wasting.  400w HPS for a little tiny parking lot! (I've been here multiple times at night and it's OVERKILL!.  Too bad you can't see inside the gate that well, because there's a 175w NEMA with a 400w MH lamp, been like that for years now. 

http://www.instantstreetview.com/2ryn9yztrjeyz2nizqsz2u Now you see the 150w HPS on a residential street thing, case in point.  I used to live up this street.  You can't see the neighbor's cobra, it's blocked by a tree. 




Yeah pre-1978!   If it was a nice vintage HPF F40 shoplight I'd remember every detail for sure.  Last week I did synthetic division in my Algebra II class.  Yeah it was a royal PITA to open (I remember you made a video of opening a GE cobra after that originally happened).  Yeah if I go back down there ever again I'll get pics of it's insides and if I'm there for an extended period I'll see about getting it going again. 
And my only HPS lamps are 50w, 400w, and 1000w.  So nothing I already have (Multiple states away too) would work.  I'll just keep an eye out at the ReStore nearby if I'm working on get it going again and try to find a lamp, though if I get desperate I'll blow a crazy amount at Home Depot for one. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 12, 2015, 10:09:17 PM
Yes, I saw that first streetview link. I didn't see the second. Wow 400W at that height? It's a Hubbell RLC BTW. Looks like a Westinghouse flood light next to it too, probably 400W MV.  No on the third either. I did find the electric company's utility yard where they have the cables and poles. I probably couldn't find it again for the life of me though lol.

Actually, it should be post-1977, since that's when NEMA tags first started appearing on GE street lights. Actually, if you have a 400W HPS lamp, that would work perfectly, just the lamp won't run up to full brightness and will stay in the "LPS state". Fine for testing the fixture though. You'd also need to stick a PC or something in the PC socket, since the power to the light is disconnected when the PC socket has no PC.

I suspect that many (if not all) of those residential 150W HPS lights were originally 175W MV.  This M-250R1 here  (http://www.instantstreetview.com/2rys1oztqj9wzt3zumz4p) is on a GE mast arm for a NEMA head, and the NEMA head wouldn't have been 250W MV.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 12, 2015, 11:39:17 PM
Yeah I thought it was pretty overkill too.  Yeah I think the flood is a Westy but it has a little PSMH lamp in it IIRC.   
Is this where you were thinking of? There's another substation but I don't remember where it is.    http://www.instantstreetview.com/2ryph1ztr9gfz5l1znyz2u (It's actually since changed a lot, that whole hill has been dynamited since then). 





I might add it takes forever to move from one "shot" to another on my slow internet, it's much faster actually driving on these roads LOL.

So would these lights have been converted FROM 175w MV or replaced with HPS fixtures? I would've loved to see what Sitka looked like in the MV days myself. 
That M-250R1 you linked to...so it would have been 250w or not? I'm confused, I think a typo occurred there.  BTW see that house behind it? Fun fact: I still have the newspaper article for when it almost fell into the street...I think it's historic though so it can't be torn down, despite it's condition (And as far as I know it's still occupied). 


http://www.instantstreetview.com/2s0hx6ztppd6z46jzr5z2u   Here's a laugh for you.  See that tsunami warning siren? I've read jokes about them looking like giant spiral CFLs for streetlights.  Also they test them every day at noon...Also in the same frame I have a rules of the road question: see that driveway off to the left? Can you turn onto that from the right side of the road even though there's no break in the lane line? Hope it doesn't sound like a stupid question...
http://www.instantstreetview.com/2s0hx6ztppd6z46jzr5z2u  Check out this grocery store parking lot.  What are these streetlights? (Now they're some sort of LEDs).  BTW, what do you think roads like this might have had before HPS? Granted, it's a fairly modern road...my dad told me he remembers when it was paved all the way to the (at that time) new supermarket pictured, it used to be a dirt road and now it's a buzzing thoughfare.  Similarly, someone I know told me growing up in this house (http://www.instantstreetview.com/2s0582ztq1hpz3r9zopz2u) they used to play in the unpaved road as a kid.  (There's a LOT of cars in Sitka IMO, for a town of only 10,00 people). 


Yeah I could borrow the PC from the 175w yardlight there for the test I suppose...I think it's a dayburner since it's little window is missing so it's more or less a shorting cap LOL.  And of course this is relying on the light being 120v. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 13, 2015, 07:04:54 PM
BTW, I did find the materials yard.  Here it is. You can see transformers on the back left, wire spools back right, and poles in the foreground. The two lights in the yard are M-400A2s, the one at the gate a M-250A2, and the light on the little arm on the pole is a Thomas & Betts 113.  (https://www.google.ca/maps/@57.102645,-135.393065,3a,74.6y,162.34h,86.73t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sv75iymUulc0Jbf0bFX8_AA!2e0?hl=en-US)

I had also found the othe substation before too, a small one.  Here it is.  (https://www.google.ca/maps/@57.053256,-135.339381,3a,75y,349.78h,91.44t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1snCqFq9-wpR2tb_35DUSY5w!2e0?hl=en-US)

Those fixtures are all factory-HPS. The MV lights likely would have been all 175W MV NEMA heads looking at the short arms. Cobraheads usually have 4ft+ arms. 18", 24", and 30" are typically "NEMA head arms", although incandescent NEMAs (like radial waves, admiral's hats, etc) would have used longer arms like cobraheads. There are a lot of 8ft arms and they all seem to have M-250A2s on them. If I had to guess, I'd say the 8ft arms  Like this one  (https://www.google.ca/maps/@57.053447,-135.338696,3a,24.8y,4.17h,112.07t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sOg4-QAANXjW0QAWMaqrhWw!2e0?hl=en-US) were installed when they installed the M-250A2s (so when they replaced the mercs in those cases, both the arm and light were replaced). No typo, just poor wording I guess. What I was saying was that the MV lights were likely 175W, not 250W.

Wow they test them every day? That must be annoying. Are tsunamis a common threat for it to require sirens? I live near the ocean but the only sirens I know of are up near Plymouth, MA  in a town called Pilgrim (named after the pilgrims...) where there's a nuclear power plant, the Pilgrim Plant. The sirens look like the ones you linked. Yeah you can take a left. Just treat it as an intersection. Driveways don't have breaks in the lines, only public roads do. Business entrances don't have breaks in the lines either, though if it's a major place like a shopping mall, there will be a break in the line. But yeah, when taking the left, you'd have to use your blinker (like you always should lol) and make sure there is no oncomming traffic before crossing the double yellow.

Hmm I think you goofed on the supermarket link. It takes me to the driveway where you talked about turning left. I noticed that Sitka is very densely populated too. All that room and everyone's crammed into a strip of land about a mile wide! It looks so big from satellite but then you look at the scale and it's very small!

Yeah the PC from the yardblaster would be fine. My guess is that the fixture is wired in one of three ways: 120V, 240V, or 240V with the PC socket wired for 120V. With 120V, there will be the one black 120V wire and the one white neutral wire. For 240V, there will be two 120V wires and no neutral. For 240V with 120V PC socket, there will be two 120V supply leads and a neutral. The neutral would be connected ONLY to the white PC socket wire. Because the PC socket is 120V, it requires the neutral to function. The rest of the fixture is 240V, so the neutral wouldn't be connected to anything else. Not sure how to wire a ballast other than a choke for 240V/120V PC. With a choke, the neutral and one hot wire go to the PC socket. Then the PC-controlled 120V hot wire goes to the choke and then the lamp socket. The second 120V supply wire goes straight to the lamp socket, and has 24/7 power. That's how most of the mercs here in RI and Souteastern MA were wired (if not they were just straight 120V).

If the light is 240V, the breaker would probably trip if you wired it for 120V (if you wired the black supply wire to one of the 120V terminals and the neutral to the other 120V terminal). If it's 240V with a 120V PC, you can actually light it up on 120V but the lamp won't warm up, since it's getting half the power. I've done it with my M-400 split door by following the instructions on the little yellow card that came with it. Since the M-400 has a 120/240V dual-tap ballast, it shows how to wire it for 120V, 240V, and 240V/120V PC. There's a small chance that the fixture could be a 208 or 277V (or 480V) but that's very small, especially considering that there's a PC socket. If it doesn't light with HPS, trying a MV lamp just to see if it lights is fine. If the fixture lights with a MV but not a HPS, the igniter is dead. (But if it does light a HPS, don't try a MV or you'll kill the starting resistor lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 13, 2015, 10:03:21 PM
Oh interesting, I've never driven by the material yard! It even took me awhile to figure out where it even was but the golf course can be seen from a long way away so that was the giveaway.  I THINK I've been by the other substation, it seems familiar...is it accessed off the main highway pretty easily? I'm thinking there may have never been mercs in a lot of places though since most of these residential neighborhoods are relatively new...NOTICE ALL THE RAISED RANCHES? LOL.  Actually I'm told a popular thing was to take a modular (NOT a mobile home, though as you can see there's a lot of those too) and put it on a stick-built downstairs/basement, making a duplex! Yeah it's a "muzak" like sound though...maybe I'll try to get a recording of it sometime.  Yeah it's SUPER densely populated IMO.  Houses on top of houses on top of houses practically! Actually Sitka is I believe the largest city in North America by land area (Almost all of Baranof Island except for the little area where I live right at the southern tip is Sitka; so largest by land area but NOT by development as you can see! It's more densely populated than the area of CA I lived in, though I think that's changing rapidly since down there is MUCH more developed than it once was.  (The last 10 years it's exploded down there). 
http://www.instantstreetview.com/2s063kztq0qkz1srzr5z2u   Now THAT's the supermarket I'm talking about.  Fun fact: Back in the day it used to have a revolving door!
I'll try to find the link to the just-fixed 400w HPS I told you about...the one that started the "I can turn off streetlights!" joke.  (Since it would cycle as I would drive by). 



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 13, 2015, 10:23:05 PM
Okay, I found it! http://www.instantstreetview.com/2dn4bmz14hjmpz2iezr5z2u

Note how different the overall scenery is? LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 14, 2015, 04:05:02 PM
Yeah a lot of the 80s-present day developments were probably originally HPS.  It must take forever for a house foundation to cure after being poured up there depending on how humid  it gets and if it gets that hot up there (it would harden faster in hot, dry weather, like paint).

Ah so you live on the same island as Sitka? I thought you lived way further up north for some reason lol. Interesting that almost the whole thing is Sitka. That's a big area of land! I think Central Falls, RI is the smallest city, being about one square mile, though 100% urban (and ghetto).

Ah, those are Westinghouse OV-25TD lights! (OV-25 TuDors, Westinghouse's answer to GE's Powr/Door line) Not sure about the pole in the back left near the store though, they appear different from the rest. The TuDors were made as late as the mid 80s (I think Cooper made the OV-15 and OV-25 TuDors alongside the L-150 and L-250 but I'm not sure if Cooper kept making them after the OVM and OVS were introduced. My guess is no.

Are you sure that the link you posted for your godparents' light is correct? Because that's not a 400W light, that's a 70W light. You can see the NEMA tag right from the streetview. (70W should also be a little dimmer than a 400W HPS lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 14, 2015, 08:48:52 PM
I'm not sure how the curing process works actually! Though another common practice, at least where I live, is creosote-treated pilings just placed in the soil, timbers atop those, and the floor joists on top of that like normal.  The cheap hippie variation (My house has this as well as the more "conventional" method) is to take large timbers (in my case 3X12s salvaged from a herring plant) and lay them across the timbers on top of the pilings, hence making a thick-enoguh floor to not need joists.  I might add this method is horrible IMO.  Also in my case they stapled black plastic on the underside (in the crawlspace) so it just invited it to rot even faster! Of course there's a plywood subfloor on top too. 
Another fairly common thing around here is to use 1X10s or 1X12s or something (And full-dimension ones too!) for subfloor and sheeting instead of plywood or OSB.  I think this is done since locally-milled (often by chainsaw) lumber is cheaper than shipping in plywood, OSB, etc.  I might add T-111 SUCKS in this climate! (Though it's used often nonetheless!) Only redeeming quality about that stuff (At least IMO) is it can double as sheeting and decent-looking siding, so if you're in a hurry to build, and/or on a budget, it works for the interim, though I would want to cover it with real siding later on.  Nice thing about full-dimension lumber is you can space your studs (At least with 2X6s) on 24" centers instead of 16", thus saving lumber!
The link is correct! I was already thinking 400w was ridiculous for a setup like that, now I know why...I was wrong! There's some much larger ones a few blocks down the road though where it interchanges with Highway 101, a major freeway. 
I think the SP35 Ecolux lamp in my bathroom light is going to die soon, it's JET black on both ends and starts off pretty dim in the middle compared to the SPX35 next to it.  We'll see! (It's 2XF32T8 BTW). 



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 15, 2015, 08:54:29 PM
Ah so most of the housed have no basement? Interesting... I know down in souther Florida, most of the homes don't have basements because the water table is too high. They have crawlspaces instead. I've seen houses that have concrete pilings spaced apart where there is no basement. A basement is a must for me personally, since I just need that extra space to store "junk" and have a workshop and also I can put up plenty of fluorescents in an unfinished basement. ;D I also want to have a large shelter (similar to a pole barn but probably made of cinderblock or wood framing and it would be insulated/heated) in my backyard where I could have a nice shop/workshop. I'd install a bunch of fluorescent lights on staggard circuits (so a switch controls specific lights and not just a row) so I can adjust the light level of the shop to save enerfy. I'd also employ my six Holophane highbays for the winter or dark days where the fluorescents alone don't cut it. The six MH highbays probably wouldn't be enough light to use without the fluorescents, but they'd be used with the fluorescents. Part of the shop I'd like to finish off and have  drywalled hallway with a bathroom and have a room for lawn/garden supplies. The bathroom and hallway would have a drop grid ceiling with open-bottom recessed cans and PL13s (or maybe some nice recessed squares). The lawn/garden storage room would be uninished and have two F40T12 WE fixtures (since those have a wallwash effect which would light shelves nicely). Above the hallway, bathroom, and lawn/garden storage room I'd have a loft with more storage. The loft would have a full-sized staircase (not a ladder or ship-style steep ladder/staircase). I could store fixtures up there.

Ah I see lol. Yeah 400W HPS would be a little bright, though I think 100 or 150W HPS would have been better than 70W, but that's just my opinion. Those bigger lights down the road are CalTrans-owned Thomas & Betts/AEL 325 FCOs. The ones on the road are 250W HPS and the ones on the freeway itself are 310W HPS. 310W HPS is pretty common on Californian freeways and Chicago since it was designed as a lumen-equivalent replacement for 700W MV. 700W MV was fairly uncommon so 310W HPS isn't too common either. Some smaller installations of 700W MVs just opted to use 250 or 400W HPS instead of 310W. 700W MV lamps aren't made anymore (they were discontinued probbaly over 10 years ago now, due to low demand. Eye was the last to make them, and stopped a few years back. The bigger companies stopped making 700W MV lamps a while ago though.

Hmm yeah I wonder how long it'll hold out. So far, the three GE SPX35s in my Lithonia parabolic troffer from school have held up despite severe blackening on the ends. Their days are numbered, but so far they've held out and I'm impressed! My school still hasn't changed any lamps downstairs in the votech building where my construction shop is. I swear they're waiting for all the lamps to die before they do anything! Unfortunately, the lamps they use will be 4100K and not 3500K though. I like the 3500K lamps in the hallways, makes the halls have a warmer feeling. The rest of the campus has all cool whites though and that's what the janitors have in stock. I've considered putting the bug in the secretary's ear to have the janitors do a relamp in the hallway in the votech building, but I'm also curious to see how dark the halls get before they decide to relamp lol. The hallway is actually adequately lit with one or two lamps working, but there are a few fixtures with all three lamps unlit (usually in fixtures with an emergency ballast, where the center lamp is normally off anyway).


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 15, 2015, 11:19:07 PM
A few have "basements" but they're not true basements...more like a walk-out one, and still on pilings.  Mine is all crawlspace, though.  (As my lot is flat).  They weren't too common in my area of CA either unless the house was on a hill...mine had a garage as a walk-out basement (Garage door on the low side, the walls made of cinderblock and mostly buried on 2 other sides).  I like the idea of a basement though.  Or a nice detached shop...maybe not nearly as fancy as you describe but a space to store all my lighting "junk" and tools and such.  My current house has some space like that but it's not enough!
Interesting, I never knew they were 310w? So the ones on Vineyard are 250w right?
Did you go the other way (Away from the freeway) and see historic oak trees with the middle cut out for power lines? If not go a mile or two the other way and laugh!

See how dim it gets in there! I also have an electronic T8 ballast "cycling" now~



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 16, 2015, 01:07:50 AM
BTW it occurred to me...while you were StreetView'ing in the vicinity of CalTrans did you get far south enough on 101 to make it into Atascadero? If so you really made it into my main habitat!
I'm also doing a lot of research on radio in central CA right now, as you know radios/radio stations are another interest of mine.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 16, 2015, 10:12:52 PM
Yep freeway lights say 31 and th Vinyard lights say 25. I didn't before, but now I went back and looked at the Atascadero area. Interestinging, the freeway lights at that exit (220A) are all 200W HPS on the freeway itself and the road, making the original mercs 400W. I couldn't find the trees with the powerlines going through them though. I mean, I saw one, but that's it. Maybe I didn't go far enough. Much of the road has no power lines at all.

BTW, if you want to know the wattage of a street light, most 80s-present-day lights have NEMA tags on the door, which is a single or double digit number in black on a yellow background for HPS, red for MH, or blue for MV. Just add a zero to the end of the number (Eg. 7 --> 70, 25 --> 250, etc). The only exceptions are 35W HPS (the tag is a "3" and you add a 5, not a 0), 175W MV, MH, PSMH (tag reads 17 and you had a 5, not a 0), and 1000W for all HID wattages (which is represented as X1 on the NEMA tag. Just have to know that X1 is 1000W...)

Cycling T8 ballast? That's something new to me... Never heard of that before lol.

BTW, went to my grandparents today. My grandma's 73rd birthday was this past Tuesday (January 13th) so we had cake and icecream over her house. I plunged her bathroom sink, as it was draining slowly. The thing drains really fast now! The only problem is that some of the water backs up into the bathtub (which is kinda gross) but it only happens when you fill the sink up all the way and then let it drain all at once. Normal use doesn't make it do that. I'll probably plung their bath tub drain next Friday... I also cleaned out another shelf on my late-grandpa's storage rack in the basement. I threw out a lot more stuff, including over a dozen empty coffee cans that he had saved over the years to put nails in and never put nails in. I threw those in the recycling bin since they're metal (and there was no room in the trash bucket that goes to the curb lol). Anyway, there's two more shelfs I have to go through, both are loaded with paintcans, both spraypaint and paintcans. Everything from Krylon and Rustoleum to Cabot and Minwax. And brands I've never heard of. I think paint cans might need to be properly disposed of. Not sure if I can just throw them out with the regular trash...

Tons of nails and screws. I just want to throw a bunch of them out but what a waste it would be! Instead, I've just combined boxes of similar but not identical nails and screws to have fewer boxes and thus save shelf space. I also cleaned out the top shelf, which had a bunch of rolls of wallpaper. Lots of wallpaper, but my grandma just said to toss it so I did. There's also a bunch of motor oil containers up there but I just left them up there- not messing with that. So half of the top shelf is totally empty, making room for whatever stuff they don't have space for right now.

Also a lot of electrical stuff down there too. I found more NOS receptacles and wallplates and vintage wirenuts. I plan to bring all the electrical stuff and some of the vintage light bulbs home one day but I don't have room for it myself lol. The WE F40/RS garage lights were very dim when I turned them on, since it's only like 35-40 degrees in there, but after running for about 15 minutes, they were full brightness. They never flickered, even when they were dim, they were steady-dim and gradually brightened up as they warmed up. That's the power of 40W full-mercury lamps on full-power HPF ballasts!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 16, 2015, 11:47:07 PM
Is the 220A exit the one by a Home Depot? Or a different one? Can you link to it on Streetview for me so I can tell exactly what you're seeing?
I knew the NEMA tag thing already. 
It's probably an multivolt Advance, that's why of course! Those things only last so long...a classic case of failed(ing) electronic ballasts running their original-to-the-installation lamps! 
IDK about aerosol but regular paint should be disposed of properly, or at least take the tops off the cans and let it dry before throwing it in the curbside trash can.  Granted, I've done it the improper way, but I don't condone it at all. 
My full power ballasts give a "Rectifying" like flicker when cold (very rapid and hardly noticeable) but warm up pretty quickly.  My Sears shoplight with the Bonusline ballast used to do it every day even when it was like 80 degrees in my shut-up garage in the summer with a pair of those hilarious 2011 Sylvania F40/CWPs.  Then that light became a plant light though, with 90s GE Plant & Aquarium lamps. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 17, 2015, 07:36:36 PM
LOL you could always find it yourself since you have the highway number and exit number. :P ;D Anyway, I found it again lol.  here's the streetview of one of the lights.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@35.489224,-120.672364,3a,15y,295.38h,162.69t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sOxc8WQ91vVkZbKpjQ_Y1iw!2e0?hl=en-US) The lights are M-400A FCOs (and one AEL 325 FCO)

Ah I didn't think about that. Once it's dry it would be disposable? Some cans are liquidy stains that are designed to soak into the wood and be topcoated, so they wouldn't dry out. I can probably just stack the cans up and fit them all though. My grandma said if I find anything I want, I can have it, so I'm going to take home all the electrical stuff *eventually*. Hmm the Western Electric fixtures didn't have any flickering that I was aware of. They were just dim and maybe were a little more noisey. But they did eventually come up to full brightness (or close to it) in a matter of minutes. I turned two off and left the third on the whole time (I was taking multiple trips from the basement to the garage to throw stuff out) and the one I left on was over 2X brighter than thebothers when I turned them all on. Good quality old-school lighting I guess!

BTW, I upgraded the wiring of my F20/PH and 2X F8T5/PreHeat undercabinet lights today. I replaced the ungrounded lamp cords with grounded 18AWG round double-insulated cords. So now my undercabinet lights attached to the shelf/rack in the utility room are properly grounded. The two undercabinet lights are actually still wired against code though (since they're wired together like your Gibson Troffers. That is against code. In order for that to work in favor of the code, they need to be hardwired. Plus mine aren't installed in a linear fashion either, one is on one storage rack and the other is below it on the next rack down. But electrically it is safe. Just one of those stupid/random code things lol. The F20 preheat undercabinet light is the primary undercabinet light (it is the one with the cord that plugs into the wall) and the F8T5 fixture has its cord wired to the F20 (so no plug installed on the end of the F8T5's cord). The F8T5 has no onboard switch but the F20 one does, so I wired the F8T5 undecabinet light to the load side of the F20's switch, so the onboard switch on the F20 undercabinet fixture also controls the F8T5 undercabinet light. It was like this before I put the grounded cords on, but I don't think I ever explained how I wired it so there you go lol. Works well, but I need the F20 fixture more than the F8T5 fixture so the F8T5 fixture sees quite a few "useless" turn-ons, since they're on the same switch. I suppose I could install an onboard switch on the F8T5 undercabinet light but I just finished rewiring them and plan to leave them alone now lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 17, 2015, 08:59:43 PM
I wonder if the M-400A I'm involved with came off 101? It's entirely possible.  Or maybe not since it's only 250w. 
I'd think it would be better than throwing it out wet anyway! Stain might not do so well though. 
You know what's funny? At first I couldn't figure out what exit that was! But it turns out it's maybe .25 miles from the house I grew up in, I've taken this exit tons of times but in a speeding car, often at night, you don't notice things you do on Streetview!
Did you get to the Atascadero High school (Further up one of the roads accessed off this freeway exit) If so then you're REALLY close to where I was!
That overpass has been redone, it used to be totally different. Since it's within .25 miles of where I was living you could hear ALL the road construction noise at night...beep beep beep ALL NIGHT! Along with the "drummer bummers" (band practice) at the high school!   The church across the way was a common meeting point for ridesharing, etc. thanks to it's huge parking lot. 
http://www.instantstreetview.com/2dltwez14ir3ez2rdzqsz2u   Since it's near the same offramp I figured I'd share this.  This gas station-cum-muffler-shop used to have outdoor slimlines (Or maybe it was HOs) under the canopy.  They were totally out for years, then a few were working, then converted to T8. See the Carlton Hotel? That big neon sign on the roof was visible through the trees at night from my house.   
http://www.instantstreetview.com/2dlmx0z14in8gz2i1zr5z2u  Streetview took me here while trying to find my street.  See the roof of the house above the single-level blue one? Funny story: I ran into someone in Sitka who had a friend who lived there.   So ironically they had spent lots of time within a block of me for years!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 18, 2015, 10:14:55 AM
No, it wouldn't have come off a Caltrans freeway, since all Caltrans lights were either FCO, or drop lens with a glare sheild on them. Also, Caltrans lights never have PC sockets, yours does. Your light must have come from either a local utility company or maybe it was bought from somewhere else.

As for that Gas Station,  Here it is in 2009 before they remodeled it and installed T8s.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@35.48915,-120.670531,3a,48.2y,304.13h,94.89t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sMvnz5dYv58NUXuh0o6_vBQ!2e0?hl=en-US)   And right next to it, a 700W MV Westinghouse OV-50 with a glareshield.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@35.48915,-120.670531,3a,59y,2.95h,105.38t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sMvnz5dYv58NUXuh0o6_vBQ!2e0?hl=en-US)  Adjusting the streetview, it was replaced with a GE M-400A FCO.  (https://www.google.com/maps/@35.48915,-120.670531,3a,53.6y,10.09h,108.56t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sCuJelpqeaGUoYRZrFLFBSA!2e0?hl=en-US) Oddly enough, the M-400A is 250W HPS. 250W HPS generally replaces 400W MV, but perhaps that particular utility doesn't use 310W HPS? Because the OV-50 would have to be either 700 or 1000W MV, and I'm guessing the former rather than the latter.

Ah so cool that you met someone who used to live near you! On vacation in Ontario this past summer, we ran into a couple from Rhode Island that were on vacation the same time we were! Really cool how that works out. :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 18, 2015, 04:18:30 PM
Interesting, I thought FCO was more of a recent thing for whatever reason.  Sure enough it was slimlines then! That's how I remember it.  You can tell they used a CMOS camera because of the flicker lines.  And they were daylight Altos...I remember that for sure.  That and the center one at the front used to work.  I would've liked to see it in it's day with F96T12/CW 75 watters! I had no idea a 700 watt MV light was there! I wish I was more alert to lighting back then. 
I'm doing radio research, like I said, and I found a pretty cool forum that talks about formats, etc...radiodiscussions.com.  And you'll get a laugh out of this I think, seeing we're so alike: (Beware one or two of them aren't totally G-rated but it's pretty hilarious! http://www.radiodiscussions.com/showthread.php?632982-Wildly-bizarre-ideas-of-radio-formats-that-would-never-fly

I can add a few to this list off the top of my head...
AM/FM station doing nothing but IDs/bumpers from other stations
AM or FM station doing nothing but "annoying" sounds...like the ding ding dine car-door-left-ajar sound, the "gas station doorbell", etc.

AM or FM station doing NOTHING but vehicle sounds: car door ajar sound, car alarms (sirens and horns), car starting sound, deuce-and-a-half whistler turbo sound, etc.

A whole station devoted to nothing but the sound effects of bratty kids throwing tantrums

And more realistically, a station with a really unusual/arbitraty playlist (This would probably actually fly where I live since it'd be the second station on the dial!):
Something like:
AC/DC-Hells Bells
Kelly Clarkson-Heartbeat song
Beach Boys- Good Vibrations
Trapt-Headstrong
Gordon Lightfoot-Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
Fuel-Million Miles
Alice in Chains-Down in a Hole
Nelly Furtado-I'm like a bird


You get the idea...LOL


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 18, 2015, 05:25:37 PM
I think the first FCO fixtures came out around 1975-1977. By 1977, a limited selection of FCOs were available (from GE, the M-250R1 was available in FCO as of 1977 and the M-400A FCO was as well. The M-400 split door was never offered in FCO, just the M-400A. My guess as for why they did that was to push people towards their more expensive Powr/Door™ fixture line as part of a marketing gimmick or something. The M-250R1 is a single-door unit, but the refractor isn't as tilted, so they didn't need to make any special modifications to make it FCO other than swap out the refractor for a flat lens (and after a few years, GE made a new special FCO reflector for the M-250R1). The M-250A was also made in a rare FCO version. I think it was only around for a short period of time in the very late 70s to early 80s, since it's not in my 1977 catalog.

The 1977 Catalog I have includes the M-250R1, M-250A Powr/Door™, M-400 split door, M-400A Powr/Door, M-250R1 FCO, M-400A Powr/Door™ FCO, and M-1000 in that order.

As for Westinghouse, The Tudor line was made in FCO, since the refractors already didn't have a tilt to them. The traditional OV-15 and OV-25 weren't made in FCO. Westinghouse used the same tudors for FCO and drop lens, just the FCO glass was serrated instead of clear. No 1000W cobraheads from any brand were ever made in FCO. Once Cooper took over though, they made the L-150 and L-250 available in FCO and the OVM and OVS were available in FCO too, even though the refractor was tilted upwards, so those fixtures aren't true FCO fixtures (and they look terrible in FCO too!).

As for ITT/Thomas & Betts, their FCO fixtures were just the same as the drop lens ones, except they painted the inside of the reflector to diffuse the light better. AEL still does that today with their FCO fixtures. I personally think the Model 25s look bad in FCO since the optics are tilted and I'm not a huge fan of the 13 or 113/115 being FCO either, but the 313/315 and 125/325 look OK FCO.

I'm pretty sure GE was the first to pioneer the FCO optics. Westinghouse and American Electric/ITT/Thomas & Betts followed suit shortly after. But GE is the only one to make sure that their FCO lights are actully true cut-off fixtures (the refractors are always angled down on FCO lights, rather than tilted upward, so no light goes above 90 degrees. And Westinghouse did the same with their TuDors but never made a special FCO single-doored OV-15 of OV-25 (instead, they offered a TuDor with a ballast mounted in the top housing, so it was essentially a two-doored single door fixture lol. In other words, the ballast door was simply a cover, just like the M-400 split door.)

Ah you can tell they're SLs from the picture? I couldn't tell lol. I guess down there you could use slimlines outdoors. Here slimlines wouldn't do well outdoors in the cold (I'm sure even HOs aren't full-brightness). Every gas station or service station canopy I've seen has HIDs, since they can perform well in cold. LEDs do great in the cold (in fact their efficacy peaks at -22 degrees!) but the heat is what kills them...

LOL that's hillarious. What about a station dedicated to bathroom sounds? Toilets flushing, "ka-ploops" from people letting out logs, farts, etc lol. There's so many stations but they never have anything "good" on. I have a number of stations that I listen to, but I've never heard any of my favorite songs on the radio. I guess there's not a big enough audience out there with similar tastes to me.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 18, 2015, 08:52:50 PM
It makes sense since I saw some 70s GE add somewhere that had a FCO cobra.  Personally I think FCO looks ugly unless it's something like that M-400A FCO at that muffler shop we streetviewed.  I find "fatter" ones don't look "right" without a sag lens.  Though I think my fave would have to be those clear poly refractors like those ones in Sitka.  They look "clean" to me, without yellowing. 
I could swear I've seen M-1000s that were FCO...would that be a later refractor replacement or something?
I find those glareshields like that one in Atascadero pretty ugly though, I'd rather FCO. 
I looked at it again to be sure and I'm almost certain they're slimlines, though I can't tell for SURE.  With 75 watt lamps they'd work fine, even in winter unless it got REALLY chilly.  From what Aaron has told me (Never seen 75 watt lamps that much in person, much less cold starting outdoors in freezing weather) with a 2-lamp ballast you're fine down to about freezing and with single lampers down to zero-ish.  So in central CA they'd do just fine with 75 watt lamps.  But I remember driving by here years ago and seeing them flicker, so I'm almost certain 60w lamps were used (Not suprising back then, full wattage lamps were pretty hard to find after EPACT and before the latest regulations.).  I also remember seeing a lamp with a yellowed/browned end (that wasn't lit) there, which I now know to be a tube guard cooked by a violent show from a dying slimline on the lead side.  (Lag side just rectifies and is VERY bad for the ballast from what I'm told).  My 60w slimlines never warm up this time of year, they're usably bright but have this obnoxious flicker that makes then annoying to work under!
I actually think some 60w daylight slimlines would be cool, just for the cool factor since I don't really see them. 
Here in the winter 75 watt slimlines might be JUST okay as well, though they'd probably need some warmup time.  Best ones though are a friend's Lithonia F48T12 industrials in their shop, they struggle for a few minutes (Because they're Altos) then get bright quickly, even in miserable 20 degree temps.  I'd like to find some HOs someday myself. 
Does anyone know if F48T12/HO lamps were still full wattage and halophoshate after EPACT? And if so are they still that way now?
I like that idea! That might fit in a market of 8 year olds really well! I cracked up reading that thread!  My personal favorites (That I laughed the hardest about) were the FM station playing videogame music, the AM station playing classic static (That's easy, go to any vacant spot on the AM dial!), the FM station with the hospital intercom, the AOL dial up moderm sounds (Laughed REALLY hard with that one), the emergency broadcast tests from the 60s, 70s, and 80s one made my chest hurt as well.  Then I would have to say the McDonalds' drive thru audio surpasses that, as does the explosion station ID!

Some more of my own:
Live broadcasts of the 911 switchboard for the city of license,
A whole radio station dedicated to ballast/starter sounds
Something broadcasting nothing but vehicle sounds (I think I had one similar to that already) but this would include the "backup sound", brakes squealing, etc.
A station of a "real" format where the DJs, IDs, commercials, etc. are in the exact same quality they'd be on a smartphone on speaker mode. 
OK seriously though, how about my idea for a station with a really arbitrary playlist? I can almost see that one flying in some places. 


I hear lots of good stuff I like on the radio, only thing I hate is I can't play it again if it's a really good song!



Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 18, 2015, 10:35:15 PM
Ah yeah GE had an ad in the late-70s/early 80s featuring an M-400A FCO with a couple shoeboxes, advertising FCOs. I think The M-250R2, M-250A2, newer M-400/M-400A, 313/315, 125/325, OVH, and TuDors look OK as FCO since the refractor angle is little or none. The reason those clear refractors don't yellow is because they're acrylic. Acrylic plastic lenses don't yellow. The prismatic drop lenses there are polycarbonate, which yellows out. It's not that prismatic lenses yellow and clear ones don't, it's just the material they're made from.

Yeah David F has some pics of "FCO" M-1000s but they must be replacement panels since there never was an FCO large cobrahead. I guess there just wasn't a market for one. BTW, I'm getting a GE M-250A2 FCO sometime in the next couple of months! :D It's a 50W HPS though, not 100/175W MV. But that works out since the 50W HPS is 120V as opposed to the 100/175W MV, which would have been 240V. The light actually was originally 100/175W MV and came from Worcester, MA. In the 90s, the guy who's giving it to me had rebuilt 200+ cobraheads out of removed lights. The M-250A2 was removed simply because it was a MV. He had replaced the ballast with a 50W HPS from a GE M-250R2 of the same age that was removed as roadkill. So the ballast is age-correct and also a GE, so it's an OEM-rebuild. I'm going to keep it 50W HPS since I really like 80s HPS fixtures. Maybe I'll find another M-250A2 FCO someday that's 100/175W MV but for now this is the next best thing!

Hmm I'm trying to remember how my grandpa's slimlines behaive at his shop in the winter. I've been trying to get rid of all the 60W lamps. If I replace a lamp and the other working lamp is 60W I replace both lamps but if the other good lamp is 75W it stays. Just my way of getting rid of the 60W lamps lol. The 60W lamps are really no good in the cold. They're decently bright but like you said, the flicker is crazy. The 75W lamps aren't flickery but they are a little dimmer in the cold. I wouldn't want 60W daylights but maybe 75W ones. They'd have to be triphosphor though since the dayligh halos are too dim for me. The F48T12/HOs sold at Lowe's here are 60W, which is full power, I think. They're cool white Sylvanias.

BTW, the F32T8/IS bathroom fixture at my grandpa's shop is holding up! I asked him if it's still working and he said yes, so the ballast and at least one of the lamps is still working lol. I was honestly expecting the lamps to be mercury-starved by now, especially if he runs it 24/7. If I buy the new T8s for it though, I'll definitely be buying GEs or Sylvanias though lol. I'll probably stick with 3500K since it's a bathroom and it gives a bit of warmth to the unpainted cinderblock-walled bathroom with a bare concrete floor and bare metal ceiling with all sorts of ductwork and stuff. A very utilitarian bathroom lol. The office is the only non-utilitarian room, with a drop ceiling, troffers, wood paneling walls, and worn-out carpeting IIRC.

LOL  what about a station of WalMart fights/arguments between shoppers and employees?

Actually, there is a station like that one here that plays "the most variety" of music. I heard Born on the Bayou by CCR and the next song was by some new female pop artist lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 18, 2015, 11:25:51 PM
Yeah I bet we're thinking of the same ad then! The clear refractors are acrylic? I thought polycarbonate didn't yellow but maybe I'm wrong...I was thinking of a certain brand (SunTuf) of clear plastic roofing like you'd use for a porch, greenhouse, etc...I'm pretty sure that stuff is polycarbonate and it DOESN'T BREAK! (Well, NOT very easily!)
Is this guy Joe M. Jr.  Or someone else? Are they a streetlight enthusiast as well as a fluorescent person? Nice that it's 50w too, that's not too bright for indoor use! How many streetlights do you have now anyway? (Including NEMAs, I know you have (or at least had) at least one of those, a Westy 100w MV IIRC),
Daylight being dim? Yeah it can seem that way for sure.  But I like the effect...I think /DX is halophosphate still.  (It doesn't have that typical triphosphor afterglow). 
I like 6500K, even for a bathroom, but yeah 3500K will indeed "feel" warmer.  If you really want something bright for slimlines, try 3500K 75w lamps as 3500K usually is one of the brighter colors.  (Although I'm fine with sacraficing lumens for higher CCT; I'm a /DX or /950 fan as you already know).
Yeah are the troffers 70s-ish? I wonder what they have for ballasts?
That would be HILARIOUS! I would dial that one up for a few minutes when I needed a laugh (But not if I was driving so I couldn't swerve off the road because I was laughing too hard!)  Have you witnessed any good WalMart arguements in person? I honestly haven't but yeah there's that Wally World stereotype for sure.  Would it be "live" or prerecorded?  I can't even imagine what the ID for that station would be...Don't touch that dial! You're tuned to KWAL (Or WWAL) Walmart Arguement radio!
Okay, how about a station that played normal music but all the commercials were "funny" ones? That might get some listenership!
Or a live feed from a divorce counseler/family law attorney's office?
Yeah I like "Mix" type radio stations a lot...I get tired of one specific genre. 
 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 19, 2015, 11:05:23 AM
Nope, acrylic is the one that doesn't yellow. Polycarbonate is more impact-resistant than acrylic but polycarbonate must be UV-stabilized with a special UV-aging retardant. If you leave an empty one of those big water jugs (the ones that go upside-down in those water despensors) out in the sun for a few years, the light blue tint to the plastic will disappear and the jug will turn brownish. Once the polycarbonate has yellowed/browned, it's actually weaker than acrylic! So polycarbonate is good for use as a vandal-resistant refractor, but acrylic has a longer service life, provided that the lamp isn't too high of a wattage and isn't prone to vandalism. Acrylic is also cheaper than polycarbonate. The stuff you're thinking of probably has some sort of overcoating on it that blocks UV rays and prevents the polycarbonate from yellowing. Most products for applications like that have a UV-blocking technology to them so you won't get sunburn on your own porch lol.

Nope, not Joe. His name is Steve (member "slz" on here). I haven't met him yet. He's getting rid of some duplicates and among them are the rebuilt M-250A2 FCO and a crescent moon incandescent, which he generously has set aside for me. I think the crescent moon incandescent is from the late 50s or early 60s, since it has a twist-lock PC socket as opposed to a tube-powered PC socket (these older tube-powered PC sockets were huge compared to today's, the size of an electric meter on a house and were actually sealed in the same type glass jar as a house meter or a vaportight incandescent! They had made both of those types. I don't really know much about tube-powered PCs but they made adapters to convert the tube-powered PC sockets to twist-lock bases so modern solid-state PCs can be used (modern meaning late 50s-present day twist-lock photocells).

Hmm. I have 11 street lights (12 if you count the 1964 M-400 that I'm holding for my friend Marco, who must not want it that badly since he hasn't made an attempt to come and get it. Maybe I'll end up keeping it or something, who knows. It needs capacitors though since the original ones were removed from the fixture when it was taken down, since they contained PCBs.). I have my NOS M-400 split door, OV-25 remote ballast, M-400A2, M-250R, M-250A, OV-10IB, OVC, M-250R1, M-250R1 Chicago Edition, Westinghouse OV-15TD FCO, and the Westinghouse RMA NEMA head, which yep, still have and yep it's 100W merc. :) I think that's all of them lol. Plus I have six ballast-less Holophane highbays and over 50 photocells. I have a tote full of HID lamps, a big cardboard box full of all kinds of residential lamps (everything from vintage incandescents to PL adapters, to circline adapters, to LED PAR lamps, etc) that weighs a TON! Then I have my linear fluorescents, which are all stored at ground level (none on shelves). I have a case of thirty F20s behind the basement couch, an area where I stash my F40s and F30s (and my two 30" F25T12 Sylvania lamps from 1962) in the laundry room, and an area where I keep more F20s and my F15s in the utility room. I also have four F40s in the utility room. My F14T12 lamps are all stored in my bedroom in a box. The box is right underneath my box of photocells.

Yep, I'm pretty sure /DX is halophosphate. They're pretty dim IMO. For triphosphor lamps, all the color temps have the same CRI and lumen output, which is nice. I think 3500K F96T12s would be cool but hard to come by. And if I were to hve him special-order lamps (which he'd never do anyway) I'd have him get 5000K triphosphor lamps since they're bright and a nice cooler color. Yeah, I thought the troffers were 70s looking but the ballasts in one of them were both ValMont ValMiser ballasts, which are from the very-late-80s or early 90s. They're from before 1994 though since ValMont sold their ballast division off to Power Lighting Products or something at that time.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 19, 2015, 11:06:40 PM
OK the UV-stabilized thing makes sense. Oh wow 11? Most of my lamps are in my storage loft (F40s, etc.) along with most incandescents, HIDs, etc.  A few are in my room though, but not many.  I have around 70 F40/F34 lamps though, that's the bulk of what my collection is. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 20, 2015, 07:02:22 AM
Yeah I can't believe 11 either lol. Wow 70 F40s! I think I have around the same number of F20s as you have of F40s though. I have a box of thirty NOS F20/WW lamps, so that inflates my collection quite a bit. I'd rather have any other color temp than WW but the lamps were $1 each so I couldn't pass them up (though that's 2 or 4 times what I'd pay at the ReStore lol)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 20, 2015, 09:54:10 PM
Yeah it inflates my collection a lot.
I started a class today to get closer to obtaining a captain's license!  ;D  It's over video-conferencing and it turns out a friend is also in there!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 21, 2015, 08:58:24 PM
Ah great! I know how much you like boats so I hope you can get your captain's license! 8)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 21, 2015, 11:00:34 PM
Yeah I've spent a pretty good chunk of my life on/around them, so yeah I hope so.  A couple mutual family friends do exactly what I plan to be doing, so I get lots of advice from them.  Not many people have stood watch on the mailboat serving their small/rural community...but I have! I'm more of a wood boat person though. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 21, 2015, 11:54:10 PM
OK remember that near-EOL GE Ecolux F32T8/SP35 in my bathroom light? Now upon startup sometimes it dim-glows for a whole minute or so, much like a failed F20-40 rapid start lamp or F96T12 slimline or HO lamp, except instead of the other lamp being off it's full brightness! Then it "flickers" to life, but acts mercury starved; dim in the middle and striating a bit.  It still warms up to full brightness in a couple minutes and I'm curious how much longer it will last.  If it were a single-lamp fixture I'd replace it but since it's a 2-lamp wraparound there's still plenty of light in there until it warms up.  I would take a photo but I doubt it would turn out well enough to do justice to what it looks like in person.
Also the pair of old-etch (pre-'92) F40C50s I have in use are also nearing the end I think.  They have some substantial banding, typical of older GE fluorescents, and may last a while longer but I give them a year, tops, even in residential use.  At least one was in HEAVY commercial use (12+ hours a day most likely) at my school, and the other...not sure but I found it underneath the local post office building.  For secondhand lamps they've done well already, clocking I'd say at least 500 hours in the last 2 years or so. 
I also have a Sylvania F40/DAYLIGHTFULLSPECTRUM (Design 50) that seemed almost toast when I first got it (It had been given the misinserted-in-the-socket-on-a .47a-with-F40s LPF ballast treatment before).  But I swear the blackening cleaned up a bit! (It lives on a shunted-for-one lamp full power Universal Therm-O-Matic).  We'll see how much longer IT lasts, too!
I also have a couple spiral CFLs I think are nearing the end too.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 22, 2015, 04:36:18 PM
Ah interesting. The lamp is nearing the end lol. So far, the three GE SPX35 EcoLuxes from 2006 (original to the fixture) are still going in my F32T8 Lithonia IS troffer. I have one spare 2006 SPX35 GE left to use as a replacement for one lamp when it fails but after that I'll need to buy new lamps. I'll probably still just buy 3500K GE lamps (which would probably still be SPX unless Lowes only sells SP, though I think they stopped making the SP and 700 Series lamps? I still see them online though). I'll only replace the failed lamps though. If it was a commercial installation I may replace all the lamps to reduce maintenance calls but in my own fixtures I have plenty of time on my hands to replace bulbs right now (in fact, I almost look forward to bulbs in my house going since I then get to service the fixture lol, then again, these SPX GEs are the original lamps to the fixture, so I don't want them to die since they're original and I think that's pretty cool. The lamps are jet black on both ends though (except for the center lamps, which is only totally blackened on one end and has only black spots where the electrode stems are on the etch end). I'm not sure why the center lamp has a different wear pattern but they must be the original lamps since they were still installed in the fixture when they removed them. There were three of them removed in total. Only one had a parabolic door/louvers so I took that one and I took all the "guts" out of the other two (ballast out of each, sockets, and lamps). The two other fixture top housings ended up in the dumpster. There was a lensed troffer down there too that was really ratty but I never got to it (I would have taken the lamps, sockets, and ballast out of that one too).

Lamp life has a lot to do with the frequency that it's switched. If the lamp is in a residential place but in a frequently-switched application, then the lamps will not last on any ballast other than RS. The light in laundry room is frequently switched and I'm surprised the lamps aren't near already to be honest. They were jet black on the ends when I got them so I figured they were right at or near EOL. They probably wouldn't light on magnetic T8RS or they'd at least struggle.

The most recent lamp I've changed that has actually burned out was a 40W GE soft white incandescent I installed in my brother's room after one of his CFLs died. Back quite a few years ago (well, around 10 I guess) we had gotten some 13W GE CFLs and we had installed them in the kitchen/dining room (four in each of the two fixtures) and they were installed in my and my brother's rooms (three in each bedroom). Everything else remained incandescent. Then I bought LEDs for my room in April 2012 because I couldn't stand the CFLs in my room and didn't want the heat from incandescents (I like to keep my room as cool as possible, when it get's cold I just open my heat vent to warm it up). One of my three CFLs ended up in one of the "boob lights" downstairs. Another ended up in the "mushroom light" over the sink, which has two lamps. The third eventually ended up in my parents' bedroom fixture, which also has two lamps (their room is bigger than mine and my brothers yet we both have three lamps in our rooms and they have only two lol).

Then, one of the CFLs in my brother's room died, so it got replaced with a 40W Philips incandescent. The CFL miraculously came back to life after tinkering with it, so it went in one of the lights next to the front door. (It stayed there until we replaced the lights next to the garage, when I replaced all four lamps out front with halogens.) So then that CFL ended up somewhere. Maybe I just stuck it in the recylcing box at lowes to get rid of it... Then the Philips incandescent died and I stuck in a use 40W GE SW from my dad's parents' dining room fixture (from when I stuck in halogens for them so they'd get more light without raising their bill by a lot) Then last week the GE died so I stuck in an NOS no-name 60W incandescent. So now his bedroom fixture has a 60W SW incandescent, an IS GE CFL, and a PS GE CFL. My room still has its three LEDs. I forget what lamps are in my parents' fixture since the cover fully encloses the lamps, but one is a PS GE CFL since there's a second-delay before the lamp comes on.

Out in the kitchen/dining room (my kitchen, dining room, and living room is all one big open studio-style room with a high ceiling) the dining room ceiling fan had all four CFLs still working. The kitchen chandelier had one CFL fail, which I spot-replaced with an enclosed A19-shape MaxLite CFL. Then a second one was spot-replaced with another MaxLite CFL. Finally, I decided to just replace all the remaining exposed tube CFLs with MaxLite enclosed CFLs since the enclosed ones look better. The only downside is that the stupid things take like three minutes to reach full brightness, which I usually don't mind, but it's nice to have instant-full-brightness light sometimes, especially when I'm home alone lol. When I'm home after dark I leave a lot of lights on lol. I don't know why I'm so paranoid of someone breaking in, but I just get nervous when I'm home alone. Not sure why. I forget what the mushroom light over the sink has but the hallway mushroom light still has both original 57W Sylvania SuperSaver lamps. I've replaced the kitchen sink mushroom light's lamps quite a few times but I haven't recently, which leads me to believe there are CFLs inside there.

As for the ''boob'' lights in the basement, thre are four, two "main" ones that share a switch and get the most use, and the other two are on their own switches, one gets moderate use and the other rarely sees any use at all. The latter was the fixture I took the original 1999 Philips 60W SW incandescent from, replacing it with a 57W "energy efficient" SATCO inside-frost lamp. The ones that share a switch have had their 60W lamps replaced a few times over the years. The one near the computer (on its own switch which sees moderate use) originally had an incandescent, then it had one of the CFLs from my room, then it had a 60W GE reveal which lasted a month, then we finally bought four 53W GE soft white halogens and I group-relamped the three that see regular use. Then recently I had to replace the twin-switched boob lights since the lamps were super dimmed and one finally blew out. I left the GE halogen in the single fixture since it's not really dimmed out much, though it does seem dimmer than the new Sylvania clear halogens. We'll see how much longer the Sylvanias last... As for the 90W SuperSaver keyless sockets, they actually never made it long enough in service to burn out. The one in the laundy room had a big CFL with a worklight reflector for the longest time since the 90W incandescent wasn't enough (dunno what happened to the 90W lamp). Then I replaced the utility room keyless socket and the laundry room keyless socket with F17T8 fluorescents (which were superseded by 4ft fluorescents) and then one of the two garage keyless sockets was replaced with a duplex outlet for the fluorescent lights out there. There's only the one remaing 90W keyless socket left, and I think it's there to stay. I don't think my dad is up for drilling anymore holes in the drywalled ceiling since we missed the joists a few times lol. One of the removed 90W incandescents is now in use at my great-aunt's house in the pull-chain I used to replace the pull-chain WE F20 fixture in her basement. The other 90W SuperSaver was in use in the 60W-MAX mushroom light over the sink, but it died and was replaced, I think by a 13W CFL. I don't know if the CFL is still around, but both lamps, whatever they are, are still working.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 22, 2015, 08:58:11 PM
It finally died this morning.  It wouldn't light all the way (glowing dim purple) then lit but had the characteristic blue end.  Later I came back and it was out.  Stuck a F40WW Mainlighter lamp in there as a replacement as I have no extra T8 lamps here.  (They work fine on those electronic ballasts but life is somewhat reduced in a frequently switched bathroom light).
It was actually original to the fixture/installation from around 2011 but was taken out at one point.  So it did about 2 years I'd say. 


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 23, 2015, 07:08:26 AM
Wow two years is terrible! Those things are rated for like 24000 hours! If it ran 24/7 for year years, it would only have ~17000 hours. Even frequently-switched, that's terrible. Unless you meant 2years as in two years running (because 17000 hours isn't bad, but obviously you didn't run i for two years straight lol).

Going to my grandmas house tonight. Will grab some goodies. ;D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 23, 2015, 02:29:15 PM
Yeah it is kinda poor I guess...but I thought it did pretty well for what it was. 
Good luck, post pics!


Title: Re: The Off-Topic Topic!!!
Post by: Mike on January 23, 2015, 04:37:33 PM
Yeah TBH, I don't think an F32T8 would make it 24000 hours. But who's counting anyway? No one really cares lol. Most large installations are relamped every few years anyway. I like the idea of group-relamping but it's such a waste removing all good lamps. What I like, is what is practiced here on the freeways: they do scheduled relamping but only replace failed lamps. That way, they wait for a good amount of lamps to be out and only replace bad lamps. I hate places that replace every single lamp when they do a relamp. I guess they figure the remaining good lamps will be dead soon, but who knows. There's always those lamps that never make it more than a few months and then there are the lamps that will last for years without quitting! Personally, if I were to do relamping, I'd replace all the lamps in a particular fixture (if the lamps all have visible wear or are a different color temperature) but if a fixture has all the lamps working, I'm not even going to waste time climbing the ladder to replace the lamps!

Now, my high school's custodians REALLY need to do some relamping in the votech building, especially in the lower level hallway. Both (upstairs and downstairs) hallways in the votech building are shaped like an L (just in case you were wondering). All the hallway lights are 2X4 3X F32T8 Lithonia parabolic troffers except for two troffers upstairs that are 2X2 parabolics with those long 24" electronic PL lamps. Neither of the 2X2 fixtures have worked as long as I've been there. The custodians will replace lamps if someone complains/brings it to their attention, but obviously no one does, sothey stay. I did mention the downstairs boys bathroom had only one lamp working in the votech bathroom and they relamped both three lamp lensed 2X4 troffers (one's got a dead ballast though). The left the one 3500K GE lamp in that worked and literally three days later it was dead! lol. But there's one troffer near the double-doors to my construction shop (the hallway is closed off by double-doors leading to my construction shop, probably to try and block out noise from the shop) and it's got one lamp left working and it flickers when someone slams the doors (which happens almost every time since they close forcefully) and I swear it's on its way out, but so far it's still going and doesn't have a ton of wear. It's got moderate wear, but usually GEs get jet-black before failing. It's so weird how some of the lamps are jet black on the ends while others have only light-moderate wear. They were all installed the same time, are the same type of lamp, and all are on the same amount of time, so it's weird how some fixtures are "loosing" their lamps faster than others. Some fixtures have all three lamps working. This makes me think that the lights are on separate circuits and every third light or something is on the same switch and maybe they leave/used to leave one set of lights on overnight. I know in the main building they leave one set of lights in the hallways overnight. The main building's hallways have lights on muliple circuits too. Sometimes during the day there's two lights on, one off, two lights on, one off, but sometimes the pattern is disruppted for soem reason. Two lights next to each other are never on the same switch though. In the "E-Building" and in the "C-2 Wing" the hallway lights are all on a single switch.

Sure! I'll post some pics sometime this weekend! I will grab the faceplates and I guess basically everything electrical-related down there that I can fit in the box I'm bringing lol. No lamps (yet...)


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 23, 2015, 05:44:20 PM
I know Philips even rates their F40s at 24,000 too! (Unlike 20K for Sylvania and 15K for GE-made store-brand F40s). 
I like group-relamping but hate the waste of lamps too. But when I was doing lights at my school I'd replace both lamps in a fixture (All full power F40 ballasts too BTW) and take the still-working but worn one home with me.  I scored quite a few 34w GE Watt-Misers that way but used many of them up and they got cooked on an electronic ballast and recycled, and others are in use on all my residential LPF ballasts. 
The room the Metalux/Gibson troffers came from (with many more of those exact fixtures) could use a relamp but it's still bright enough in there and the ceiling is REALLY high so it's a pain to relamp.  Tall ladders, scared of heights, carrying lamps up and down, breaking thumbnails trying to open the little tabs that hold the doors on the fixtures, and the fact that those are pain to relamp no matter what means I wouldn't want to do it either until it was pitch black in there.  But all those old Universal and Advance ballasts have been stuck with dead lamps for months/years, as well as 34 watt lamps.  I don't like using 34 watters on PCB ballasts in general, even those made after '74 when the energy savers came out.  But this building was built in '79, when they'd been around for a few years, and I'm certain my two fixtures from there have had 34 watt lamps in their past, though when I removed them the lamps were "Westpointe" (True Value) GE-made 40w cool white.  One of them did have a nearly-NOS Norelco though, since we came across a case of them there NOS and admittedly installed them in commercial service. If that place went T8 though and I got to save all the old lamps/ballasts I'd be sure to take all 20+ of them first though, vintage trumps modern for me.
CAN  a rapid start ballast be hurt by having EOL lamps for years? I don't think so but still wonder.    I have, however, seen some REALLY black lamps that dim-glowed for extended periods, with cathodes still heated until they totally burned away.  One like that was a post-Mainlighter GE F40CW, and those things usually have short blackening!
Speaking of post-Mainlighter GE F40CWs with the "old" etch, today I was at the last surviving building of the cold storage complex those vaportight husks that had the post-PCB October 1980 Advance Kool-Koils came from.  Two of those fixtures are still there but don't work and are lampless and I bet those early 80s Advance ballasts are the culprit. They're also visibly disconnected.  I might try to get them though in hopes they do work.  There's also a few F40 lamps there I'm going to ask about, including a post-mainlighter GE F40CW that from the etch end anyway looks pretty new, if not NOS, a couple GTE Sylvania F40CW lamps (One is bad though I think), and some other shatter-guard (Satco?) lamps.  And another GE I'm not sure what it is.  (They were in boxes and I pulled them out far enough to see etches if they were on that end but since they're not my lamps I didn't want to snoop around too much.
There's also a (sign?) fixture there with a (Robertson?) F40/30 preheat ballast I think.  If I find something else that's truly preheat I'll convert that shoplight back to rapid start.  Ideally I want to find a single lamp strip and make THAT preheat.  A NPF ballast is ideal anyway, since I want something that will play nice with 34 watt lamps, since I have some of those I want to use up.
That place also has some abandoned incandescent vaportights that probably have pre-1989 lamps (Or even pre-1982).  Most of that place burnt to the ground in '89, and it had closed in '82.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 23, 2015, 09:54:14 PM
Yeah when I relamp a fixture I would probably replace all the lamps in a given fixture but in my grandpa's fixtures at his shop and in his basement, I only replace the bad lamps. Since pretty much all the lamps are Altos, I have no interest in keeping the working pair for myself and I figure why waste a still-working lamp, so I only replace the bad lamp(s). At the shop, when I replace a lamp or two in a fixture, I remove all the lamps and wipe them with a wet cloth or paper towel and I wipe down the relfector/strip channel cover for the slimlines or the inside and diffuser if it's a troffer. a LOT of dirt/dust on the fixtures at his shop! His basement isn't bad, so I don't wipe the lamps or inside of the troffers when I relamp but every once in a while I'll get Windex and paper towels and wipe down the inside of the diffuser.

I don't like using reduced-wattage lamps period, not only because they tend to hurt the ballast (well, not slimlines since most ballasts are also rated for F72s and thus won't overheat with 60W F96T12s) but also because of the fact that ES lamps are dimmer than full-wattage. I want bright lights! Of course, my Cooper Turret has 34W lamps, simply because I have 34W lamps to use and the lamps are NOS like the fixture and also similar in age to the fixture so the 34W lamps (full-mercury Philips) could pass as the "original" lamps to the fixture. I'll keep them in until they burn out. They'll still be working when I take the fixture to my own house in the future, since they really aren't used much and they're on RS. I don't really use any of my fluorescents a lot. When they are used it's generally for less than an hour (most times it's actually just a few minutes).

Umm, well, from what I've been told, no, RS ballasts aren't affected by dead or missing lamps but there was a troffer in my grandpa's shop that has EOL tubes for years (they just did the dim flicker thing) and now the ballasts do nothing for like two minutes and all of a sudden the lamps instant-start. I don't know if it has slowly recovered from that or not. NExt time I'm at his shop I'll try it. When I first relamped it, even a split-second shut-off after the lamps have been running for hours would cause it to stay out for a minute and then the lamps would randomly instant-start after a minute or two when you least expect it lol. He leaves the lights on all day while he's there so I don't think it bothers him any. Yeah there's a 2X F40T12/RS fixture in the votech building at my school that doesn't work. One of the lamps was dimly glowing but now it's totally out. I think the lamps are 34W Sylvanias, full mercury. In the Aquaculture shop (fish tanks votech class) their "safety light" is also still F40/RS too and had a pair of working /CW lamps that striated when I turned them on, so they're 34W. However, I noticed the fixture doesn't work at all for whatever reason. I tried the switch and nothing. :(   The "safety light" in my construction shop was converted to F32T8/PS though (with Sylvania F32/741s, one's dead already). I plan to bring in a pair of lamps for the F40/RS in the second shop we use (formerly the automechanics shop, but that program was nixed due to budget cuts several years ago). The fixture appears to have 24/7 power since oddly enough, there's no switch for it whereas all the other "safty lights" I've seen are on switches. It still has power because we use the oulet underneath it to plug in power tools (the outlet is fed by conduit that comes out of the fixture and I assume both are on the same circuit). And I'll probably bring in a lamp for the T8 "safety light" too. Right now I don't have my own car so I can't drive to school but I hope to get one in the next year or so. When I do, I'll bring in the lamps. I'll also bring in one of my street lights to show the kids in my shop class.

Sounds like a lot of school stuff could have been in that building. To bad most of it was burned down. :-(

Well, I got a boatload of stuff AND I got the bulbs too, ;D I got single-gang almond and brown toggle switch and duplex receptacle wallplates (and some metal duplex receptacle wallpates), copper/aluminum wire-rate wirenuts, really cool vintage bakelite wirenuts, some single-gang old work boxes, a double-gang workbox with a cover, a bunch of romex clamps and romex staples, a box of utility company square washers addressed Narragansett Electric from Westinghouse, a bunch of NOS duplex receptacles, some fuses, some wire-on male plugs (ungrounded unfortunately, so I can't use them on my fluorescent lights unless I run a separate ground wire, which I may end up doing in my future shop since the ungrounded male plugs are SO much cheaper than the grounded ones. The grounded ones are like 3X more for some reason. I also got other stuff too! Pics to come tomorrow or sunday! :D


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 23, 2015, 11:18:16 PM
Yeah I like group relamping individual fixtures but my bathroom light I just relamped is mixed colors (/WW and SPX35), mixed wattages (32w and 40w) AND mixed types! (F32T8 AND F40T12). But those electronic ballasts don't care if they have to run a T12 lamp.
That's sweet of you to fix fixtures there at the school! But I've done it too:) People can't believe teens know how to fix a fluorescent light!
What bulbs did you get? (That's what I'm most curious about I must admit). BTW, Have you gotten any closer to getting the basement F40 preheaters with more daylight Lifelines and that Norelco-made Philips F40CW? (I know that they're at a different relative's house but still).
Yeah slimlines are fine with 60w lamps but the darn 60w slimlines are the worst of the energy saver lamps so it's really just as bad! 34w ones warm up in 40 degree temps, even in stuff like LOA shoplights, but the 8ft 60w ones never warm up in temps below about 60 degrees!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 24, 2015, 06:10:43 PM
Gee all mixed up, eh? :P ;D Yeah, T8 ballasts will run a T12, but the T12 will be under-driven and will fail early. On the contrary, a T12 ballast will overdrive a T8 lamp. If it's a magnetic ballast, the ballast will probably be the one to take the bullet but elelectronic T12 ballasts might live through a T8 lamp. The lamp wouldn't last long though lol. It would be driven like 1.5X what it's supposed to be driven at!

LOL thanks. Lamps I bought for the fixtures at school? None yet. I'll probably use a pair of Sylvania F40/CWX lamps I already have for the T12/RS one and I'll just find a random F32T8 for the one in my shop. I may buy a pair of GE F32T8 5000K lamps for the fixture and keep the working Sylvania. I'd replace some of the lamps in the 2X4 troffers in the construction hallway but I know my shop teacher wouldn't allow that and if he did, we could both get in trouble. If I were to replace the lamps in those, I'd replace all the lamps and use 5000K GEs. And I'd keep the working SPX35s.

Nope, no update on my aunt's and uncle's basement. I don't ask because I don't want to pry at them lol. They're extremely busy and I hardly see them so I don't want the few times I see them "to be all about the lights". I've made it clear that I want the fixtures so I trust that my uncle will save them and the lamps when he removes them.

I got pics of all the stuff I got from my late-grandpa's shelf and will post later this evening or tomorrow.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 24, 2015, 06:31:15 PM
I never thought of that, but that actually might be a good way to get more light out of a F32T8, although lamp life would probably be noticeably reduced.  I'd be okay with that though, sacraficing lamp life for higher output.
I'm going to try to ask about those F40 lamps in that building I mentioned...they're on my "radar" for lighting goodies.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 24, 2015, 11:08:23 PM
I'd ask someone like Don or Trent if it would be safe for the electronic T12 ballast though. F32T8s and F40T12s are very different beasts despite having common fixtures sizes and socket types.

Go for it! Hopefully you can get them. :D I might ask my construction teacher if I can bring in a case of lamps to fix the hallway 2X4 troffers and the lights out in the shop. There are six three-lamp Lithonia troffers in "our section" of the hallway. Four are together and the other two are together, separated by a doorway, but no doors. I think three of the fixtures are emergency lights, so the center lamps on those is not designed to be on when power is applied. In the hallway there are five lamps out (not including the emergency lamps, which are supposed to be off). One of the two lamps in the wall-mounted "safety light" are out, and there's this 8ft tandem 4X F32T8 wrap light with all four lamps not working (two lamps light at one end but not the other and the other two lamps are dim; sounds more like a bad ballast than bad lamps but we'll see). And then one of the 6X F32T8 highbays has a lamp out.

I would buy a 12-pack of Sylvania 5000K F32T8s (since that's what Lowe's sells) for $29.98. I would replace all the lamps in the four troffers grouped together (except for the emergency lamps) and use one of the good GE SPX35s I remove to fix one of the lamps that out with the two other fixtures grouped together. So the four fixtures grouped together would have all 5000K lamps and the two other ones grouped together would remain 3500K. The "safety light" would get two 5000K lamps. The good 4100K lamp from the safety light would go into the highbay with a burnt out lamp. I'd put four removed but working SPX35 GEs into the 8ft wraparound light and see if good lamps work in it. If not, I'll try the original lamps in another fixture to see if they work. If the SPX35 lamps don't work in the wrap I'll ask if I can replace the ballast and if not, I'll just leave the fixture lampless. The 8ft wrap I speak of is suspended but hardwired.

I don't think he'd let me relamp the troffers since there's no way to shut off the power (they have those newer sockets with the rotating plastic collar though so it's perfectly safe to relamp with the power on, even in a troffer, since the lamps can't accidentially make contact with the socket contacts and shock the fixture (and me). He would probably let me fix the F40/RS and F32T8/PS safety lights though. Not sure about the 8ft wrap, since we never use it anyway (switch is in a hard-to-get-to place in between two cabinets) and not sure of the highbay since it's only one lamp and the other five still give plenty of light. Honestly, 30 bucks is a lot to spend on relamping fixtures that aren't even mine, but I'd rather see 5000K lamps in the troffers than a random mix of 3500K and 4100K. I'd buy 3500K lamps to match the existing ones but I like 5000K better lol.


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: GEsoftwhite100watts on January 25, 2015, 03:50:30 PM
You're REALLY nice, buying lamps for them! I would only do that in trade for something vintage, I'd be purchasing those lamps for myself! I have mentioned I'd like to trade something for the Sears shoplight and Norelco F40CWs in the tool shop that belongs to my municipality, though.  (Like I said, I know one of the main maintenance guys, who actually turned me on to all the Mainlighter lamps I now have). 
Had a dream last night I was in a store I know in real life, only it was lit by 2XF96 fixtures with mostly GE Ecolux Chroma 50 and Deluxe Daylight 75w lamps! Oddly, the fixtures were all "randomly" placed, i.e not in rows or paralell to each other.  But I remember thinking that daylight and C50 full wattage slimlines was a pretty cool sight to see!


Title: Re: THe Off Topic, Topic!!!!
Post by: Mike on January 25, 2015, 04:49:26 PM
LOL probably being too nice. I just hate seeing burned out tubes. The only thing I hate more than a bunch of burned out lamps is a bunch of mixed color temperatures. I don't really mind different color temperatures in different fixtures, but I don't like randomly placed lamps of different colors. Like if all the center lamps were daylight and the outers were cool white, I'd be cool with that but if they replace the lamps (they have replaced a few out lamps upstairs in the hallways but none downstairs) they will only replace the dead lamps and it'll be an ugly mix of cool white and 3500K. I don't mind cool white but I do get sick of it. The whole school is cool white. The 3500K lamps in the votech halls are a