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Thread: Shop Lighting

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh
    Posts
    427

    Shop Lighting

    Hello all,

    I need to replace most of the 4 foot fluorescent bulbs in my shop. It has been a long time since I saw this topic come up. Presently I have a combination of bulbs, Cool Whites and Daylights. The Daylights in my opinion are much brighter than the cool whites. The Cool Whites seem to give off a pink cast. I remember this being brought up somewhere before about which bulb is better for a shop. It has to do with how much a light bulb simulates daylight. Calvin or Kalven (sp) sorry for the spelling. In my case I would like to get it as bright as possible. I have to replace about 30 of the 48 that are in there.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Roseville, Ca.
    Posts
    68
    I have the daylight deluxe bulbs (t8). Combined with white walls, nice and bright.
    Ken

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Southern MD
    Posts
    1,931
    There are two factors in how a flourescent tube will show colors. The first is the Color Rendering Index (CRI). Look for above 90 to get full spectrum color. The other is the color temperature in Kelvin. Look for above 5000K.

    Halogen and Incandescent are always 100CRI (perfect). But, incandescent bulbs are very low in temperature at <3000K. The coatings on the "daylight" incandescent bulbs raise the temp at the expense of CRI, so incandescent is not a good color rendering bulb.

    The reason to be concerned about this is if you want to be able to match finishes or see the true color of your finish in your shop under the lights. If you aren't concerned about that, then just get what you like.

    I have found I like the daylight style bulbs better anyway. Mine are not specifically called daylight, but are 92CRI and 6500K ... I think.
    Jay St. Peter

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh
    Posts
    427

    Light bulbs

    Thanks guys,

    I believe I will try to purchase a few bulbs and then see how I like it. My fixtures I purchased used when I put my shop together. Now; a few years later the bulbs are getting dim and some are burned out. I can really see the difference in the quality of light I now have.

    Funny thing; I called a few electircal warehouses yesterday and asked for prices on a quanity of bulbs. I thought I was asking for directions to Mars, everyone of the guys I spoke to had not a clue of what Daylight bulbs were. They could not give me a price because they said they have never ordered them so the bulbs are not in there system. Of course Lowe's has them in two packs. I counted my bulbs last yesterday 54, it gets expensive buying them by the two pack. I may buy a couple of two packs to test out how I like a new Daylight. About half of my bulbs are Daylights and the half are Cool Whites. But since all of them are 10 years old or at least 6-7 years old new ones should look quite different.

    I will keep in mind about the CRI and the Kelvin rating. One fellow at the warehouse did tell me that Daylights go as hight as 6500 in the rating. I belive the ones that Lowe's carried were 4000

    I may have to try a specialty lighting store. I am amazed that I have a hard time finding these.

    Thanks fellows
    Ben

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Manotick, ON
    Posts
    21
    I purchased a box full-spectrum Excella tubes from 1000Bulbs.com for my shop. They were double-boxed, and all arrived intact. The color and brightness of these bulbs is great for shop use.

    -Rob-

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Carlyle IL
    Posts
    2,167
    Here is another vote for 1000Bulbs.com. Good prices.

    Joe

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Douglasville, GA
    Posts
    776
    Ben, the Jan-Feb 2002 issue of FWW covered this in some detail and the article is available on their web site to download. I can email you by Adobe copy, I think, if you wish.

    Also, there's is another article on Woodcentral's archive on shop lighting.

    Best regards, Tom who thinks with shop lighting too much isn't enough.
    Chapel Hills Turning Studio
    Douglasville, GA

    Hoosier by birth, Georgian by choice!

    Have blanks, will trade.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Gambrills, MD - Near Annapolis
    Posts
    556

    Full-Spectrum Lamps

    Ben, I use full spectrum lighting. It makes working in my shop a pleasure. I also use a high quality electronic ballast, so no hum.

    Model Railroading is one of my hobbies. I put together a page that compares the light from all sorts of different types of lamps. What it doesn't show is that due to the full-spectrum coverage on some of those lamps, they actually appear brighter than the equivalent standard lamps. They are easier on the eyes, and better for your mood (it's true!)

    Daylight lamps may be fine, but they're not full-spectrum. Once you use full-spectrum, it is hard to use anything else

    I have a room in the house with my model railroad in it. When I have the lamps on in there and I open the hall door, it looks like sunlight streaming into the hall. My wife first noticed that, and it's proof of the quality of the light.

    Pete

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Gambrills, MD - Near Annapolis
    Posts
    556
    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Beckers
    I purchased a box full-spectrum Excella tubes from 1000Bulbs.com for my shop. They were double-boxed, and all arrived intact. The color and brightness of these bulbs is great for shop use.
    That's the tube I and a photographer friend settled on for our work.

    Pete

  10. #10

    One thing to keep in mind

    Don't forget shipping. I just off the phone with 1000bulbs and found out that one case of 8 foot 110W High Output (15 in a case) was going to cost $51.21. Then I was told the shipping on each case was $45! Yikes! She verified it for me twice and said it was because they were 8 foot bulbs.

    Just something to think about. It comes out to $6.41 including shipping per bulb, versus Home Depots $5.93 plus tax coming to $6.29 per bulb (when buying a case of 18). It is only a 12 cent savings per bulb, but with Home Depot you can go back and immediately get a new bulb if there is a problem. I don't own stock in either company and am merely pointing out the big picture.

    There was a coupon code box on the 1000bulbs site, so maybe that would bring things down a bit (if you have one).

    Hope this helps a bit.

    Dave

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Southern MD
    Posts
    1,931
    My shop has a mere 48 bulbs required. I bought mine locally at a lighting place. They are Sylvania bulbs and I believe they were under $2 ea by the case. I was amazed after searching the web for prices that they beat the best price I had found on comparable bulbs and no shipping. I had to order them and wait a few days, but for half the price of anything I had found ... OK.
    Jay St. Peter

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Pittsburgh
    Posts
    427

    Light bulbs

    Fellows,
    Thanks again for the info, Pete that is quite a demo you put together. I also see what you mean about yellow casts. I did like the more white back ground. It takes a bit of time to see what you were talking about but there is a difference. I will check out the web site you recommended. I will also try a local lighting dealer.

    I was having this conversation with a co worker yesterday and he was pretty amazed at some of the comments about lighting for a shop. He assumed that a bulb is a bulb and there weren't any differences. I also let him look around the site for a few minutes, he changed his mind about people that work with wood. He didn't realize that we talk about much more than making saw dust.

    I just checked out that website and found some interesting bulbs. The verilux sounds interesting, it has a Kelvin rating of 6250 and a CRI of 94, I would like to buy a few to give them a try. First I will look at the local places for lighting.

    Thanks fellows
    Ben
    Last edited by Ben Abate; 01-25-2007 at 6:48 AM.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Mpls, Minn
    Posts
    2,882
    Just wondering, does anybody besides me think the Daylight bulbs have a blue tint to them?
    Found that a bit hard to take after years of basic shop/utility grade lights, so I mixed them and seems better.

    Have to try the full spectrum though, thanks.

    Al

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Manotick, ON
    Posts
    21
    Quote Originally Posted by David Cramer
    ...
    Just something to think about. It comes out to $6.41 including shipping per bulb, versus Home Depots $5.93 plus tax coming to $6.29 per bulb (when buying a case of 18). It is only a 12 cent savings per bulb, but with Home Depot you can go back and immediately get a new bulb if there is a problem. I don't own stock in either company and am merely pointing out the big picture.
    ...
    Dave
    Your Home Depot sells full-spectrum, high CRI, bulbs?
    I simply couldn't find anything decent locally. All HD here sells are standard (ie. 'cool' and other) bulbs, and one type of 'daylight' bulb which was more expensive than those Excellas I bought. Since I wanted the full-spectrum bulbs it was the Internet or nothing. I should mentione that all my fixtures are 4', so shipping was not as big of an issue (forgot what I paid, but it was not the type of price that would leave an impression).

    -Rob-

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Mid Michigan
    Posts
    3,559
    Quote Originally Posted by Al Willits
    Just wondering, does anybody besides me think the Daylight bulbs have a blue tint to them?
    Found that a bit hard to take after years of basic shop/utility grade lights, so I mixed them and seems better.

    Have to try the full spectrum though, thanks.

    Al
    Al,
    When I was much younger I printed wedding photographs and found that many people have color lighting preferences. Some wanted the peachy flesh tones while others wanted the cooler bluish or some other tint. Not really sure why but guess it is how they think it should be. I have noticed that several people seem to object to the bluish tint in their lighting, all in a matter of what makes you comfortable.
    Daylight bulbs try to duplicate daylight which has a high color temerature, (I think it is around 12,000 kelvin at noon on a normal sunlit day) making the light color more blue.
    I haven't tried the full spectrum bulbs yet but plan on giving them a try when I start fixing up my shop area. I am looking for a good source for the T8 ballasts and fixtures. I am not sure about the Home Depot quality.
    David B

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