UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Powered By Google Custom Search Vintage Radio Service Data

Go Back   UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Discussion Forum > Specific Vintage Equipment > Other Vintage Household Electrical or Electromechanical Items

Notices

Other Vintage Household Electrical or Electromechanical Items For discussions about other vintage (over 25 years old) electrical and electromechanical household items. See the sticky thread for details.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 17th Jan 2020, 11:09 pm   #1
Tinker1966
Triode
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Leominster, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 14
Default Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

I find these strangely fascinating !

I only have 2 proper "antique" bulbs ......

The first I found in a box of tat at an auction
Its made by the Renewable Lamp Co - well, remade to be more precise !
They started in the late 1800's and had all but ceased trading by 1905. They took broken bulbs, cut a hole in the top, made a new filament and resealed the tip of the bulb - recycling way back when !
The second is a Robertson bulb who were an early bulb makers in Hammersmith partly owned by GEC.

Both bulbs still work as the photos show - both obviously being underrun to keep them safe
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3595.jpg
Views:	179
Size:	32.5 KB
ID:	197285   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3596.jpg
Views:	168
Size:	52.5 KB
ID:	197286   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3252.jpg
Views:	180
Size:	36.7 KB
ID:	197287   Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3597.jpg
Views:	167
Size:	29.6 KB
ID:	197288   Click image for larger version

Name:	thumbnail.jpg
Views:	155
Size:	30.0 KB
ID:	197289  

Tinker1966 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17th Jan 2020, 11:16 pm   #2
Silicon
Octode
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Coulsdon, London, UK.
Posts: 1,099
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

Thank you for posting these photos.

What voltage were they designed for?
Silicon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17th Jan 2020, 11:35 pm   #3
kalee20
Dekatron
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Lynton, N. Devon, UK.
Posts: 5,266
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

I've got 3 Robertson carbon-filament bulbs, 16cp (candlepower), for 210V. Bought NOS from J Bull about 32 years ago.

It's interesting that the spec seems to have returned to light output rather than wattage, modern bulbs are specified as light output in lumens. Using conversion factor 1cd = 4π lm and 1cd is approx 1cp, these would be 200 lumens in modern-speak.
kalee20 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 12:06 am   #4
Herald1360
Dekatron
 
Herald1360's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Leominster, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 13,853
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

Forum member Zelandeth has been known to mention lighting occasionally......
__________________
....__________
....|____||__|__\_____
.=.| _---\__|__|_---_|.
.........O..Chris....O
Herald1360 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 10:18 am   #5
mike_newcomb
Heptode
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: West London, UK.
Posts: 660
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

Hi, the Robertson / Osram Building still exists in Brook Green Hammersmith, although much is now a Tesco Supermarket.

Having worked at GEC North Wembley and been inside the (closed) Glass Kilns in the Osram Works there, viewing the Osram Dome on top of the historic (probably listed) Hammersmith building is a please whenever I pass.

See:

http://www.lamptech.co.uk/Documents/...ammersmith.htm

Regards - Mike
mike_newcomb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 10:58 am   #6
Gridiron
Hexode
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: West Midlands, UK.
Posts: 267
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

I have a few early light bulbs, I think the one in the photo may be the oldest. I believe it to be an Edison one pre 1885 as the arrangement for clamping the filament was made simpler around this date. Possibly for 100 volts. I have run it up gently on a Variac and it works, although there looks like a small crack in the glass.
Mike.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Early Edison Bulb.jpg
Views:	118
Size:	29.7 KB
ID:	197310  
Gridiron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 12:22 pm   #7
Tinker1966
Triode
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Leominster, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 14
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

Crikey, thats a relief - its not only me then !!

These are both faintly marked for 210v

There is some outstanding footage and info on that Lamptech page - thanks

Gridiron - that bulb is fabulous, I'd love to find something that early. Where did you get it ? Can't be many about !!
Tinker1966 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 2:57 pm   #8
Gridiron
Hexode
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: West Midlands, UK.
Posts: 267
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

I think it was from a BVWS Golborne event from the BVWS stall, Mike.
Gridiron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 4:31 pm   #9
emeritus
Dekatron
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Brentwood, Essex, UK.
Posts: 3,437
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

In my 1910-11 GEC catalogue the light output of lamps is generally specified in terms of both British and Hefner candle power. At that date the precious metal Platinum was the only metal that would both wet glass for a good seal, and have a coefficient of thermal expansion that matched glass, so that the seal would not be subject to mechanical stresses during temperature cycling. So it may well have been cost-effective to fit a new filament. A decade or so ago I came across an American lamp collector's web page where he described how he had mended the broken filament of a rare ruby-red carbon lamp by breaking the pip and carefully applying a Carbon-loaded paste to the break, which was at one of the supports. He then got a glass blower to attach a length of glass tube to the remains of the pip and had the bulb evacuated, heating the tube to produce a new pip. The repair was evidently successful. From the GEC catalogue it appears that their carbon filament lamps were sorted during testing into voltage bands only 5V wide, so for example you find lamps marked 105V.
The only vintage bulb I have is a wartime ( pip-less) Osglim that is heavy blackened, no doubt due to extensive use by my parents in the black-out. I did at one time have a brass BC holder for BC bulbs where the pins were aligned at 45 degrees to the contacts, but it got lost in a house move.

Last edited by emeritus; 18th Jan 2020 at 4:41 pm.
emeritus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 4:46 pm   #10
Dave Moll
Dekatron
 
Dave Moll's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: West Cumbria (CA13), UK
Posts: 4,326
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

No, your're not the only one. Here are a few luminary oddities of mine:
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	beehive neon.jpg
Views:	94
Size:	17.2 KB
ID:	197336   Click image for larger version

Name:	carbon filament light bulb.jpg
Views:	95
Size:	17.9 KB
ID:	197337   Click image for larger version

Name:	cylindrical light bulb.jpg
Views:	95
Size:	13.3 KB
ID:	197338   Click image for larger version

Name:	valve-shaped light bulb.jpg
Views:	98
Size:	16.1 KB
ID:	197339  
__________________
Mending is better than Ending (cf Brave New World by Aldous Huxley)
Dave Moll is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 5:10 pm   #11
ex 2 Base
Hexode
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Scarborough, North Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 272
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

If you run the carbon coil lamp on DC and move a magnet close by you can slightly stretch or move the coil. I used to do that via a variac, transformer, and rectifier, be careful not to over run and ruin a nice object.
ex 2 Base is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 5:57 pm   #12
merlinmaxwell
Dekatron
 
merlinmaxwell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Maidenhead, Berkshire, UK.
Posts: 8,793
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

At school (a few, 45 odd, years ago) the physics teacher put a magnet next to a carbon filament lamp and we all saw it (the filament) shaking side to side. I must thank the teacher (Tony Cornell, I remember him with great fondness) for being brilliant at getting all of the class to enjoy physics, even the girls, which was rare in those days.

A bit OT, he had a splendid way of simplifying the mathematical bit of physics, "If it makes it bigger put it on the top, smaller on the bottom (of a divide line) and multiply by some constant or other which you can find in a book".
__________________
Cats have staff, it's dogs that have owners.
merlinmaxwell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 6:43 pm   #13
Vintage_RC
Pentode
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: Twickenham, London, UK.
Posts: 162
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

You are definitely not alone in collecting early light bulbs. I have four carbon filament bulbs all with good filaments. Two are 110V and the other two are 240V, one of the 240V bulbs is brand new in its wrapping and is marked GPO with a crown. Out of interest I fired up the other 240V one recently (full mains voltage) and it happily glowed creating an awful lot of heat and not a great deal of light.
__________________
Alan G6PUB, BVWS
Vintage_RC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 7:14 pm   #14
Techman
Nonode
 
Techman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Lincolnshire, UK.
Posts: 2,706
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

I've got one like the one shown in the first post.

There's been a previous thread on this subject.

Pictures shown below of it taken a few years ago for the previous thread on this subject. Note the missing spigots the same as the one in the first post.

I'll try to find the original thread later and link to it. Unfortunately, some of the text in my posts around that time got 'hacked' by "someone" within the forum causing nonsensical words to be added, which rather spoiled them - including posts on that particular thread Perhaps the moderators could attend to this issue before I link to it later?

Pictures of the carbon filament lamp below:-
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	P1040428.JPG
Views:	73
Size:	160.0 KB
ID:	197357   Click image for larger version

Name:	P1040432.JPG
Views:	72
Size:	164.9 KB
ID:	197358   Click image for larger version

Name:	P1040433.JPG
Views:	72
Size:	167.6 KB
ID:	197359   Click image for larger version

Name:	P1040430.jpg
Views:	83
Size:	39.8 KB
ID:	197360  
Techman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 7:58 pm   #15
broadgage
Octode
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: North Somerset, UK.
Posts: 1,449
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

Back in the day, it was usual to offer carbon lamps, and later tungsten lamps in 5 volt steps over the range of 100 volts to 130 volts, and in 10 volt steps in the range 200 volts to 250 or 260 volts.

Apart from the multiplicity of supply voltages, it was common practice to deliberately run lamps on higher or lower voltages for various reasons.

When lamp replacement was difficult or expensive, it was common practice to under run lamps so as to extend the life. The electricity thereby wasted was cheaper than say erecting scaffolding to change lamps more often.

In other cases, it was worth running lamps at a higher voltage than intended in order to get more light, and accepting the increased expenditure on lamps.

Theatre foot lights and flood lights usually used red, amber, blue and white lights. The blue tended to be much dimmer than the amber or red, and to counteract this it was common practice to use 200 volt lamps on 220 volt circuits, or 220 volt lamps on 240 volt circuits, for the blue light.

An early text on photography suggests use of then new 100 volt, 1,000 watt tungsten lamps for studio lighting, on 120 volt circuits.
It was suggested to run the lamps at 90 volts via a dropper resistance whilst setting up and planning, and at 120 volts for the actual exposure.

Sports field lighting often over ran lamps. This reduced the KW loading for a given light level. An important factor if it enabled an existing supply to be used, rather than paying for an expensive upgrade.

Old lamp catalogues listed many very odd voltages, that did not correspond to any known standard supply voltage.
150 and 160 volts for example. I suspect that these were either to achieve an extreme life on 120 volt circuits, or for use three in series on industrial 440/450/480 volt circuits.

Smaller decorative lamps came in various odd voltages, some of which were intended for burning several in series on 200 volt to 240 volt circuits.
broadgage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th Jan 2020, 8:01 pm   #16
Tinker1966
Triode
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Leominster, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 14
Default Re: Does anyone collect antique light bulbs ?

I'm so glad to have started this thread !
Its great to see some of these fabulous bulbs.
I shall be looking out for some more now.
Both of mine came from boxes of tat at different junk auctions - it was a miracle they didn't get broken.
When I found the Renewable Lamp Co bulb I spoke to a great guy called Roy (it may have been Ray !) who was writing a book about bulbs and gave me a lot of info on my bulb, I don't know if he ever published the book.
Tinker1966 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 7:55 am.


All information and advice on this forum is subject to the WARNING AND DISCLAIMER located at https://www.vintage-radio.net/rules.html.
Failure to heed this warning may result in death or serious injury to yourself and/or others.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2002 - 2020, Paul Stenning.