Whew. Glad that's done!

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Gary S., Sep 16, 2007.

  1. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Just finished today's project. Took down 8 existing flourescent fixtures which were looking rather beat up, cracked, and tired. Kept the best three, moved them to the middle of the room for general lighting. Bought 12 new 4 footers, installed them around the perimeter of the room over the shelves... all wired up, lamps and lens installed, and she all works! What a job, I'm glad it is done. Tomorrow I will be back to actually doing "railroad stuff - I plan to try my hand at casting some culverts and retaining walls out of plaster.

    But back to the electricity stuff. Remember folks, electricity ain't no hobby. Don't try this at home. Call a licensed electrician. You have been warned!:eek:
  2. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Oh, BTW, it brightened up the layout tremendously. I used 6100K "daylight" lamps and it looks good to me.
  3. bigsteel

    bigsteel Call me Mr.Tinkertrain

    cant wait to see the difference in the layout,but did you use regular flourescent light sor did you buy the ones that give off "natural" light?--josh
  4. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    I used the ones that are supposed to mimick daylight. They weren't cheap. $28 bucks for a box of ten.

    Back to the wiring. Did anyone know that #12 copper wire doesn't acually melt until it is carrying 180+ amps? So who needs an electrishun?
  5. bigsteel

    bigsteel Call me Mr.Tinkertrain

    wow,that isnt cheap.but its all for a better purpose right? :mrgreen:--josh
  6. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Yep, that is what I told myself when I was buying the new fixtures. I was debating using the old ones again, but they just looked terrible - cracked lenses, yeelowed, and such. Then I decided that I could make some wood frames to mount new lenses in and save money that way. Then I thought, "are you crazy? just spend the money and be done with it!"

    I'm glad I did.
  7. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Hey, Gary! That is cheap, at less than three bucks apiece. Twenty-five years ago (wow, time does fly when you're havin' fun);) I bought colour corrected fluorescents for a previous layout: they were $15.00 each!!:eek:

    Yeah, but it doesn't have to get that hot to melt the plastic insulation. :-D Glad to hear that you've got the lighting finished in plenty of time for that open house. :thumb:

  8. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

    Good for you Gary! I'm sure you'll be happy with the new illumination for the railroad!
  9. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Hey Wayne:

    The layout looks much brighter and cheerful with the 6100K lamps versus the "cool whites" that I had before. As I was working and getting the fixtures hooked up, I was turning them on. I still had some of the old fixtures up, they had cool white lamps in them. The cool white lamps looked rather orangish and much dimmer when compared to the new lamps. Now, part of that could be because of the old lens on the old fixtures.

    Bottom line is the layout lighting is much improved, for 2 reasons, the white light just looks better to me, and there were some areas that didn't have enough light, but not now.

    As for the #12 wire, you are entirely correct. We do an experiment at school to show the apprentices this fact. We take different size wires and use a 120 to 12 transformer to get a 10 to 1 current boost, and the insulation melts off long before the copper is in trouble. So, #12 wire will in fact carry 150+ amps. But, you still need to protect it at 20 amps or so because of the insulation.
  10. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Oh... 15 bucks apiece?? Darn, I now feel like I got a bargain at $2.80 each.

    Ralph: So far I'm very happy that I spent the time and money to get it done before I continue any further with the scenery. But, I'm mostly glad the job is finished!
  11. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    I'm always amazed by the low level of light over some layouts: I wouldn't even want to work on the benchwork in that kind of relative darkness. :rolleyes: I may have to give those 6100K tubes a try, as I still feel that my layout could use more light. Those older tubes that I spoke of had a very pleasant quality of light, but the quantity (lumens) was somewhat reduced compared to a cool white.

    In Ontario, #12 is rated for a 20 amp circuit, and it's what I used for all of my electric heating circuits. If I recall correctly, it's also what I used as a bus to connect the receptacles for my walk-around throttles: much heavier than required, but I had some left over after wiring the house. ;)

  12. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    Good going Gary. Maybe we should mention that a weak ballast or not grounding the fixtures will affect the light output and color also.

  13. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Photos of some of the lights. Nice and bright and white!

    Attached Files:

  14. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Dang! Trust me, the room is WAY brighter than that. The camera adjusted the brightness....
  15. TruckLover

    TruckLover Mack CH613 & 53' Trailer

    Now thats what I need to do, too bad my layout is going to be in my room, I think my dad would pretty much flip his lid if I installed those lights in my room hehehehehehehehe

    Looks good Gary!!! I can tell its brighter then it is in the pic lol, the celing is bright. Make for some nice pics :thumb: :thumb:
  16. Floyd

    Floyd Member

    Gary love the ligting. I can see that the lights are surface mounted and was wondering if you had to tear out the sheetrock to run your wiring. I'd like new lights but don't want to tear up the ceiling.:nope:

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