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Old 26th Apr 2019, 9:23 pm   #41
Richard_FM
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

I remember my parents buying a lot of early spherical power saving bulbs around 20 years ago, these took a while to warm up, but seemed to produce decent light when they got there.
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Old 26th Apr 2019, 11:45 pm   #42
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Quote:
Originally Posted by G6Tanuki View Post

First/Second-generation CFLs were truly horrid: They were also invariably "Dim White" colour-spectrum - which lit everything with a horrid sub-candlelight-yellow meaning everyone illuminated by such monstrosities appeared to have Jaundice.
The trouble is that the spectrum of light produced by a CFL lamp is very unflattering to human skin tones and has the lighting ambiance of a public toilet.

But there is more. As we age the photoreceptors in the macula area of the retina atrophy and overall we require more light to see as well. In the accelerated or extreme form of the process it is called dry macula degeneration. This is why its easier for people with varying degrees of this condition to read in sunlight than indoors. Also why if some are in bright light and go indoors it seems darker for a while and takes longer to adapt as we age. The CFL lamps put out a narrower distribution of wavelengths than a filament lamp which has more of a Gaussian distribution. So older people find they are suddenly struggling to read under their new high efficiency CFL lamps. The better move is to fit Halogen lamps if that happens. I have seen this dozens of times. LED's seem a little less problematic in this respect, but still not as good as a halogen lamp.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 11:23 am   #43
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

A few more from my collection.

1. A CRYSELCO 150W opal lamp date unknown [1940's?]

2. A Robertson 250W carbon heater bulb for very early electric fires. Marked
'Property of the GEC Lampworks.'

3. Ancient carbon filament top pip. Found in a very old garage lead light with
wood handle /Aluminium shade.

4. 60W drawn wire cage filament. Top pip.

5. Very early carbon filament top pip discovered in the 1960's in an outside
toilet during demolition of street.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 11:38 am   #44
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Part 2 of 4.

6. Early drawn wire. Make unknown.[O/C]

7. 25W red Traction lamp' Probably used on trams. GEC

8 ORION [Austrian] 15W dated 1931.

9. Low wattage dark blue wartime black out lamp. [Given by customer]

10. [To follow]

11. A clear 'mushroom lamp marked INSULAR. Probably foreign.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 11:43 am   #45
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Quote:
Originally Posted by G6Tanuki View Post
They (compact fluorescent lamps) were truly unpopular - both with their target-victims and with us utility-company investors. Holding-back a decade, by which time LEDs had become the only sensible energy-efficiency option, would have made far greater economic- and environmental-sense.
Agree. But LED technology was not as well developed, nor was it obvious 'back then' that LED's would get to be as good as they have become. CFL's was a blind alley - a bit like steam cars - but we nevertheless learned a lot from them. And they still got us well on the road to lower energy lighting.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 11:50 am   #46
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Part 3.

12. 210V 15W 'sample' probably from the rep's case.Dated November 1929.

13 A blue lamp, probably foreign, dated 1929.

14 A classic Osram/GEC drawn wire cage.

15 A 1911 decorative lamp to celebrate the Coronation of George V and
Queen Mary. Carbon filament 200V.

15b Queen Mary close up.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 11:51 am   #47
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

I remember my gran had a few mushroom bulbs around her house, with a pearl finish.

There used to be a shop called Whitickers in Stockport with an interesting selection of bulbs in & around the window. Even after it closed down the bulbs were left around the window.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 12:07 pm   #48
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Part 4.

16. George V. 1911 Coronation decorative lamp.

17. Ediswan Mazda BTH 40W.

18. Osram/GEC 'Radiant Heat' lamp 60W Probably a fireglow effect lamp.

19. Another ORION lamp. 15W dated Jan.1931.

20. Two BERRY MAGICOAL fireglow lamps. The pronged one is the type
used in pre war fires. The 3 pin BC during the post war period.

Hope you enjoy the pics. A fiddle to photograph...Regards, John.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 1:41 pm   #49
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Interesting photos, thank you. Item 5 of #43 looks like one of the type used in the early days by Edison and others, where the filament was a strip of carbonised paper or Bristol Board, or is its appearance due to camera shake?
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 2:03 pm   #50
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

No not so much camera shake. The carbon filament hoops 'twang', vibrate slightly when powered.
This is the only lamp that does this! John.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 8:02 pm   #51
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Wow, some lovely vintage lamps! That's quite a collection, John.

Since I mentioned them earlier, I thought I'll post some pictures of vintage 1980s miniature fluorescent lamps intended as replacements for filament bulbs. Two of these consist of an adaptor containing the wirewound ballast inductor and a separate replaceable tube. This made economic sense, since the wirewound ballast is expensive but seldom fails. The customer only has to buy it once, then just replace the tube when necessary.

First up - a Thorn 2D fluorescent tube and BC adaptor, made in Great Britain, shown separately then coupled together. The size and weight of this combination prevented it from fitting many lights, hence the adaptors quickly disappeared from the market and are rare. The tubes became successful in specially designed fittings. They're a common sight in council blocks of flats, lighting up the corridors and alleyways.

Next - a Sylvania Lynx Diamant, made in West Germany. The long, thin PL-S fluorescent tube is still in its packaging; I've removed the ES adaptor for a closer look. Again, the PL adaptors are rare: I haven't seen one or a 2D adaptor anywhere else on the Internet.

Finally the Sylvania adaptor is shown next to a Philips SL-18 bulb. I think this was the first all-in-one compact fluorescent bulb. Like the 2D and Lynx, it uses a heavy wirewound ballast, but the tube cannot be replaced separately. You have to throw the whole thing away when it fails - the shape of things to come

All of these vintage fluorescent lamps still work. They were not a success in their day due to the high initial cost. Also they were bulky and heavy - when used in a table lamp, it could become unstable and topple over. The later generation CFL bulbs used an electronic ballast, but they had a slow start / warm-up time compared to these old ones.
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Old 27th Apr 2019, 9:49 pm   #52
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

I remember seeing two-part CFL lamps on sale in Woolworths circa 1990, the only time I have seen any in the flesh.
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Old 28th Apr 2019, 6:45 pm   #53
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

It appears that the goal in the early part of the 20th Century was to produce a lamp life that was as long as possible often at the expense of actual light output.

Later a compromise was agreed upon giving the best possible light output combined with a long life. Maybe not a Cartel as such, just a sort of standard suggested guarantee of efficiency.

A lot of technology and care for a few pennies. John.
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Old 28th Apr 2019, 8:15 pm   #54
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

As others have posted, it is easy to make a longer lasting lamp, but at the expense of reduced efficiency and greater fuel bills.

1000 hours, was and still is, a sensible compromise for general use.

In years gone by, GLS lamps were available in a vast choice of voltages, not just to cater for differing supply voltages, but also to allow the better informed user to deliberately over run or under run when some special circumstances justified this.

I can remember theatre footlights that used 240 volt lamps for the white, amber, and red lights, but 200 volt lamps in the blue lights.
The blue lights tended to be rather dim, and over-running 200 volt lamps on a 240 volt circuit not only improved the light output, but also improved the percentage of blue.

GLS lamps of lower voltages tend to be more efficient, if life and quality of manufacture remain constant.
A 120 volt 60 watt lamp will be brighter than a 240 volt 60 watt lamp, other factors remaining unaltered.

50 volt 300 watt lamps used to be popular for street and industrial lighting and gave a better light than 240 volt lamps.

Mains voltage lamps of very low power are very inefficient and the thin filaments make them vulnerable to vibration.
A 6 volt 0.3 amp pilot light bulb worked from a transformer will give more light than an 8 watt nightlight bulb and last longer.
A 12 volt 21 watt vehicle bulb worked from a transformer will give a lot more light than a 25 watt mains bulb.
Before halogen lamps became popular, desk lamps and task lights that used a 21 watt car bulb were popular. Not only brighter, but a small and mass produced car bulb was cheaper to replace.
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Old 28th Apr 2019, 11:38 pm   #55
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

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A 120 volt 60 watt lamp will be brighter than a 240 volt 60 watt lamp, other factors remaining unaltered.
I remember early rock'n'roll lighting systems using series pairs of 120V PAR 64 lamps, for the same reason.
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Old 29th Apr 2019, 10:39 am   #56
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On strictly economic grounds, there would be a case for use of 120 volt lamps in series pairs on 240 volt supplies.
In practice the complication and risks of mistakes outweigh the advantages.

For lamps of very low power, series operation is still preferred. A 240 volt 3 watt lamp is relatively expensive, is of very low efficiency, and unreliable. Hence the popularity of series connected 20 volt 3 watt lamps for Christmas decorations.

For a supply voltage of much more than about 250 volts, series connection is preferred.
"traction lamps" used to be manufactured, primarily for use in trams. They came in 60 watt and a selection of voltages in the 100 volt to 125 volt range.
Intended use was five lamps in series from the overhead line voltage of about 500 to 560 volts. Traction lamps were either specially manufactured, or specially selected from standard production so as to have accurately matched current ratings.
Also once used on DC electric railways.
The red traction lamp illustrated in an earlier post was probably for the taillight of a tram, run in series with 4 other white lamps of the same rating.
AFAIK these lamps are no longer made. Heritage or vintage trams still in use tend to use standard 60 watt, 110/120 volt lamps, five in series.
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Old 29th Apr 2019, 10:46 pm   #57
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Thanks for the information. I wondered how they were wired in trams. The camera has altered the colour of the traction lamp giving it a pink effect. It is in fact 'signal red', J.
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Old 30th Apr 2019, 6:32 pm   #58
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

Lower powered mains lamps certainly didn't last well in the lighting display when I worked in Woolies. The number of 15W lamps I had to replace every Saturday was astounding. I'm pretty sure that we used around 10:1 ourselves compared to sales. However can you imagine the heat if we'd been using 60W to save the cost of the replacements, and even the effect on the electricity bill.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 12:57 pm   #59
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Years ago, there used to exist "double festoon lamp holders" for use in decorative lighting in seaside resorts and the like.
These consisted of a pair of BC holders wired in series and intended to attached to festoon lighting cable.

A pair of 120 volt lamps in series were cheaper to buy, brighter, longer lasting and increased the overall reliability of the display.
The failure of a 240 volt lamp would often operate the fuse and leave dozens of lamps unlit.
The failure of a 120 volt lamp extinguished only one other lamp.

Both the lamps had to be the same wattage, it was an urban myth that they had to be the same colour !
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Old 11th Jun 2019, 5:15 pm   #60
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Default Re: The lightbulb conspiracy

I can sort-of see the logic of 2 120V bulbs in series, but from an economic perspective I kinda wonder.

2 new identical bulbs in series - apart from the 'infant mortality' failures (where a component fails in the first few hours/days of its life usually due to a manufacturing defect or trauma during installation) I would expect two identical series-connected bulbs to age-to-failure at about the same rate.

So both the reliability-engineer and the economist in me would say 'when one in the pair fails, replace both' on the basis that the surviving one will probably also fail in the near-future, fitting two new bulbs gives a guaranteed future life (infant-mortality excepted), and the cost of sending the guy-with-a-cherry-picker out again a few days later is going to be significantly greater than the cost of fitting two new bulbs in the first place.

I apply the same economic logic to replacing scale-lamp bulbs in radios: bulbs are cheap, my time is valuable (and becomes significantly more-valuable to me as I get older and my remaining years get less and less).
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