Fluorescent <> TFT ?

Hi All,
My daughter has a 4' fluorescent lamp over her work area ( it's under her high wall mounted bed with a cover over the outward facing side) and its fine for *us* (plenty of light for her, cheap to run for me!) ;-).
She mentioned yesterday that it didn't start properly (flickering / buzzing) so I guess I'm looking at a new tube and or starter (I can't remember when it was last changed .. probably not good ..) but I thought I remembered reading here about 'alternative' fancy fluo's that may be more suitable for this job especially as she now has her PC TFT under there (although its not under the main lamp beam as such).
She does often do 'art' there so something that gives a good spectrum of light would probably be a good thing (maybe a solution where we could get a range of tubes and see what feels best)?
So what am I looking for please, or do I just replace existing <shrug>?
All the best ..
T i m
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T i m wrote:

I use daylight simulation bulbs (DSBs) in all of the lamps and lights in my light-controlled lab. They have two things going for them: they produce a light that makes colours look the same as in daylight, so obviously good for art; they may make you feel less tired than conventional bulbs. I have no technical justification for the second property, maybe it's just how it affects me, but the light boxes that SAD (seasonally affecting disorder) people use have 'em in.
You can get DSBs in fluorescent and low energy format as well, Google gives these guys as suppliers: http://www.lightbulbs-direct.com/search_results.asp?svalue y%20fluorescent&show=near
I understand that plants grow better with DSBs as well (as the nefarious chemical boys will tell you).
Chips.
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Ok ..

The main problem with our 15 yr old is getting her to go to sleep and not read all night!

Ah, that was a question of mine a few months back (SAD boxes).

Ok, thanks for that Chips.

lol
All the best ..
T i m
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The good ol' colour matching northlight tubes are ideal for this sort of thing. With an electronic ballast to reduce flicker and improve life and efficiency.
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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On Sat, 29 Apr 2006 11:13:02 +0100, "Dave Plowman (News)"

Thanks for that Dave.
I'f I've wanted a 5' flouro fitting in the past I've just wandered into my local electrical supplier and just bought what they handed over the counter, the only real choices being 'do you want slim or normal tubes and a diffuser or not' ?
So how would I go about getting a complete 4' fitting with 'electronic ballast' or is it something I could retro fit to the existing one? Should I be able to walk into any decent electrical wholesaler and ask for .... ??
(I'm thinking if there was any cost saving / technical advantage to doing either of the above please? Keeping the existing fitting could make the job easier re screw holes etc as it's mounted on it's side (to keep it tight to the 'ceiling' (raised bed underside)) and to ensure most of the light is thrown back / down).
All the best ..
T i m
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I retrofit them in.

You should, but you'll be lucky if you can, _yet_...
The EU has been steadily raising the efficiency required of fluorescent tube control gear. Gear is rated A, B, C in decreasing order of efficiency. Electronic control gear is all A. Magnetic ballasts were B and C rated, although there are some high quality A-rated magnetic ballasts. Grade C ballasts were banned a while back, but they are what you would have found in cheap fittings from sheds and wholesalers prior to that. I think B has recently been banned too, or is due to be shortly. That leaves A, which is electronic control gear and the very highest efficiency magnetic ballasts. This might lead to more of a shift to electronic ballasts in bog-standard fittings from sheds and wholesalers.
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Andrew Gabriel

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On 29 Apr 2006 12:26:33 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@cucumber.demon.co.uk (Andrew Gabriel) wrote:

Good, so it can (physically) be done then at least. ;-)

Hmm, ok, well inspired to have a look I've found the following in her (slimline) fitting ..(I think, reading upside down etc)
2 x Schwalbe L65TD 760 Osram / Philips 932 760 ballasts?
1 x Superfast electronic starter type GP ?
1 x 6uF cap
And it was running a 5' (not 4 as I guessed) Thorn 58W Pluslux 3500 slimline tube?
Ok, so is there any info there that would tell anyone in the know what I have got and is it any good please?
All the best ..
T i m
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There is a vast range of tubes for specialist apps and any decent wholesaler should be able to supply one as common as a colour matching northlight.

I'd say it should be possible to fit an electronic ballast to most standard fittings. The wiring is simpler than a conventional choke type - simply mains in and two feeds - one to each end cap.

Should be easy if it's not a slimline fitting, but maybe even then.
I've favoured Osram electronic ballasts. I have dimming versions fitted to my under cupboard lighting in my kitchen. Two tubes of different lengths as the cupboards are on two adjoining walls. Used the same on others' kitchens and not heard of a tube or ballast failure yet. Mine are over 10 years old and left on when out of the house.
Do a Google on 'Osram electronic ballast' to find a supplier near you or an online one.
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On Sat, 29 Apr 2006 13:29:48 +0100, "Dave Plowman (News)"

Ok, ta ..

So I replace the 4 items (two chokes, one cap and one electronic starter) with one item?

Oh .. ;-(

Hmm, 1M broken links, obsure missmatches an pdf results . I'll try again later ;-(
And even if it had given a decent result you don't know if you are being ripped off ..?
"Could you supply me one of yer ZXYZ123's please"
"Yes Sir, bend over and we'll give you the price .. " ;-)
All the best ..
T i m
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http://shopping.lycos.co.uk/c1129p1m0b0/lighting_systems.html
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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On Sat, 29 Apr 2006 19:55:11 +0100, "Dave Plowman (News)"

Ah, thanks Dave ;-)
So, if the existing 5' flouro says 58W I assume I would need something 'bigger' (or equal to) to run it?
Like ..
http://www.bltdirect.com/product.php?pidT97&catB4
Our tube is ~ 1" in diameter and the pins 1/2" spacing?
What is a T5 tube?
All the best ..
T i m
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T i m wrote:

The usual rule is replace the starter first (small, 50p) and if it doesnt work replace the tube (large, a few quid). Good idea to keep a spare available.
For replacement tube I would recommend 3500K. This will by default be a halophosphate tube, and I'd go with this because a 5' fitting above a workspace is a high illumination level, and there would be no real advantage with a triphosphor tube in this case, just more chance of headaches.
Northlight tubes in domestic situations I'd stay well away from, high CCT tubes are quite hideous to live with. If she wants a dedicated artist's light, fine, but for reading, computing etc, no. Same applies to cool white, 4500K and so on.
Why youre talking about replacing the fitting i've no idea, is the present one unsatisfactory? If you do, I'd downsize to 4', unless she needs a seriously high light level for some reason.
NT
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On 29 Apr 2006 11:29:31 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@care2.com wrote:

I have looked closer since my first post and this thing has a big (as big as the cap) electronic starter?

That's what's in there at the moment ..

Ok ..

Ok ..

No, as far as I'm aware it has always been very 'fit for purpose' but I thought that I'd better ask if technology now provided something better some 15 years after I installed it?

Her 'desk' is a very deep, double post formed edge worktop that is the full width of the room. The 5' light fills that area quite well leaving the ends a bit darker for her TV / (TFT) PC screen (opposite ends) .
If what we have already is 'still ok' then it will just be a new (90p) tube on Tuesday .. ;-)
(it has always had a bit of mains hum but nothing she (or her big sister) have ever complained about)?
All the best ..
T i m
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T i m wrote:

Electronic control gear and triphosphor tubes both provide a little more efficiency. With the same input power that means a little more light output. With a 5 footer above her desk thats unlikely to be wanted. You've already got the non flicker and flash starting that an electronic starter gives.

yes, its even simpler when using electronic starters.

not hard to reduce that if ever wanted
NT
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