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Old September 30 2012, 02:25 AM   #1
trekkiedane
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Home lighting.

Beginning at the time I acquired my first soldering iron, I've been trying to control the lighting in my abode to suit my needs at any time.

It was relatively simple to make your own dimmers (and A LOT cheaper than buying them (at that time anyway)) and coloured lamps (~bulps) have been around for, well almost, ever.

It didn't really occur to me how important lighting was, to anyone but myself, until I read about it in Inge Eriksens SciFi: "The Paradise Machine" (1989) where one of the main characters had the good fortune to have her apartment lights installed by a lighting engineer she could not have afforded any more, at the time of the story, as he had become the favourite specialist of the ruling classes.


Sure, both Inge and I are Danes and therefore live in a cold and dark forbidding place where good lighting is paramount: Candles are widely used every day around here, as are dimmers (well, they were back in the day before CFLs ruined it all!) and architect-designed lamps (google "PH-lamp" if you don't believe me ).

Whatever, if you ever watched an interior-design show you know what I'm talking about.

Recently I purchased some of Ikeas "Dioder"-lamps.

I have installed one between the windows and the shades in my living room, giving the effect that light is coming from outside whenever I have the shades down and it's actually night.

Here's the modern twist: As LEDs are storming into our homes as primary light source, so are all the properties of the LEDs i.e. the colours!

Last night I had an AHA-moment when this simple trick was able to fool my mind into thinking it was daybreak when, in fact, it was just the colour, I'd set the lamp to, coming from beyond the shades.

When I set the light to a different colour (say in the red part of the spectrum) it makes my home appear like a brothel from the outside though

I'm curious: how do you light (the inside of) your home? - any tricks you'd like to share?
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Old September 30 2012, 02:32 AM   #2
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Re: Home lighting.

Wow! Those lights sound great! I think I would like to simulate dawn here in sunny Britain during the winter!

I have standard energy saving lights at the ceilings... the colour is awful, and to top it off, someone recently told me they are toxic, but I've not looked it up yet...
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Old September 30 2012, 02:50 AM   #3
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Re: Home lighting.

An Officer wrote: View Post
Wow! Those lights sound great! I think I would like to simulate dawn here in sunny Britain during the winter!
It's not so much the amount of light as it is the colour of light coming from what appears to be outside (the other side of the blinds/curtains) I noticed.

I have standard energy saving lights at the ceilings... the colour is awful, and to top it off, someone recently told me they are toxic, but I've not looked it up yet...
Older models (especially) of CFL lamps contain (trace amounts of) mercury. Don't smash them and you're fine
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Old September 30 2012, 05:01 AM   #4
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Re: Home lighting.

trekkiedane wrote: View Post
I'm curious: how do you light (the inside of) your home? - any tricks you'd like to share?
I use oil lamps that burn baby oil -- from real babies!

MWAHAHAHA!
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Old September 30 2012, 05:13 AM   #5
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Re: Home lighting.

^I hesitate to ask... What, then, do you use for outdoor illumination?
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Old September 30 2012, 05:17 AM   #6
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Re: Home lighting.

The lighting in our apartment is very poor. We have two table lamps (using 3 way bulbs) in the living room, and I have a floor lamp (using a 3 way bulb) in my room. The apartment itself has 2 overhead lights, one in the kitchen and one in the hallway, and that's it. At night, we get the equivalent of a late evening/early dusk. It sucks.

In fairness, the apartment is 40 years old, and was built cheap even then.
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Old September 30 2012, 05:19 AM   #7
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Re: Home lighting.

Unfamiliar with the term, "3 way bulb"? -is that like in a car, a bulb that has three filaments for three different settings?
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Old September 30 2012, 05:30 AM   #8
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Re: Home lighting.

trekkiedane wrote: View Post
Unfamiliar with the term, "3 way bulb"? -is that like in a car, a bulb that has three filaments for three different settings?
Yes. You can get them in 30/70/100 watts, and 50/100/150 watts.
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Old September 30 2012, 05:38 AM   #9
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Re: Home lighting.

Cool, like a dimmer with presets! I kinda like that idea!
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Old September 30 2012, 05:38 AM   #10
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Re: Home lighting.

trekkiedane wrote: View Post
Cool, like a dimmer with presets! I kinda like that idea!
Are three-way bulbs not available in your neck of the woods? They're quite common in America.

trekkiedane wrote: View Post
scotpens wrote: View Post
trekkiedane wrote: View Post
I'm curious: how do you light (the inside of) your home? - any tricks you'd like to share?
I use oil lamps that burn baby oil -- from real babies!

MWAHAHAHA!
I hesitate to ask... What, then, do you use for outdoor illumination?
I burn witches.
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Old September 30 2012, 05:47 AM   #11
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Re: Home lighting.

scotpens wrote: View Post
Are three-way bulbs not available in your neck of the woods? They're quite common in America.
I've never even heard of that kind of bulb before*
I'm guessing the downside (that once one of the filaments burn out the bulb becomes a lot less useful) made us not want them. But that is just a guess.

ETA: Plus: you'd need specially made fittings and switches... very American solution... I think the most common European way to do something similar is to have three bulbs in a lamp -and three switches (or indeed; a four way switch).

Maybe The English or the French or... are different though.


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Old September 30 2012, 05:53 AM   #12
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Re: Home lighting.

trekkiedane wrote: View Post
Cool, like a dimmer with presets! I kinda like that idea!
Yep, though I think they're a bit more trouble than they're worth. We generally lose the 150 watt filament rather quickly, and then we're not sure whether the lamp is actually off, or just on the 150 watt setting.

Most of the lamps around here are made for 3 way bulbs. Quite honestly, I only use one setting (when it's not burned out), so it's a waste for me, but others may have different opinions.
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Old September 30 2012, 06:02 AM   #13
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Re: Home lighting.

There were a lot of dimmers in my house when I moved in, but I had them all removed. I never liked or used them. All the bulbs in this house are standard incandescent 60-watters. And I have the shades closed all the time, it is never very bright in here anyway, by choice.

And no, I'm not paranoid (anymore ) about CFLs, I just know they can't be used in recessed lighting fixtures - CFLs generate too much heat for that - and I have a fair amount of fixtures like that, esp. in my basement. So while I wait for CFLs that *can* be used in recesses to be invented, I've got a decent stockpile of regular bulbs.
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Old September 30 2012, 06:03 AM   #14
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Re: Home lighting.

^You sound like one of those people that just skipped the CFLs and -eventually- go directly from incandescents to LEDs

I've never even had ANY 'bulb' higher than 100W* -and those I've only ever used for vintage effect lamps: like the ones that have a revolving inner thing that gives the effect that the Niagara Falls on the shade is actually running water.

But, alas, bulbs over 75W are either illegal or being outphased atm.


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*Except for very special lighting of course, but there I'm thinking of 1000W and such.
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Old September 30 2012, 06:05 AM   #15
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Re: Home lighting.

There are some things in my house that can take bulbs of 75 watts or higher, but also some things that can handle a maximum of 60 watts. So to make it easier, I just use 60W bulbs on everything.
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