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What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

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  • What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

    I would like to generate a bit of a database or list of who's using what kind and how much lighting and if they are satisfied with it. Hopefully this will help others in the future. Here is a bit of a questionaire that I came up with. Please let me know if something should be added to the list.
    1) Type(s) and quantity of fixtures (Reflectors?)?
    2) Bulbs used (lumen rating) color temperature rating in K?
    3) Ceiling height?
    4) Shop area (square footage)?
    5) Wall and ceiling finish/color?
    6) Are you satisfied with the lighting?
    7) What would you change?
    8) Other comments?

    I have about 700 square feet and am likely going to install 10 8' T5 fluorescent fixtures with 4 x 4' 6500K bulbs. I'll have 4 100W incandescent for daily in and out use. Most of the shop is 12' except a couple bulkheads for ducting to the house. The finish will be drywall painted a flat white to avoid glare. It's extra cost and I don't know how much but you can get dim-able T5's. Right now I'm not going that route but is it worth it?

    Thanks in advance!

    Warren

  • #2

    Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

    Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

    1) 8 dual tube fluorescent fixtures-cheapies from home depot
    2) Dunno. 40W each. I think when I bought them they were "warmer" than the cool whites. I think they are "warm white".
    3)10'
    4) 400
    5) faded paper on drywall
    6) Yes
    7) nothing - unless I could convince myself to replace all the tubes with the full spectrum lights. Not much chance of that.
    8) What will you do with this information?
    Cheers
    Randy

    Comment


    • #3

      Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

      Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

      Warren,

      Here is a link to a workshop illumination thread on this forum from last year ...

      http://forum.canadianwoodworking.com...estions-Needed.....

      in which I detail my setup .

      Over at www.woodnet.net there's a published lighting engineer named Jack Lindsey who, from time to time, gives advice..... around February 20th of this year in the woodworking pages of that forum he gave specific advice regarding an individual query and I translated his advice to a formula for adequate workshop lighting of "200 lumens per square foot of floor area".....
      use that site's search field with something like "lighting for a new shop" etc. (after you register yourself) to retrieve that thread.....

      My understanding is that T8 is the sweet spot in terms of value and that T5 is significantly pricier.

      good luck

      michael

      Comment


      • #4

        Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

        Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

        Hi Warren
        I recently began working in a shop that i have built in my back yard. This is the setup that I settled on based on wanting more than adequate lighting and wanting to be as energy efficient as reasonably possile.
        I installed 8 dual tube 4 foot long T5 fixtures from Cooper Lighting( ICF series) . They are high output, 54 watt fixtures, with electronic balasts and cold start, ( high bay) and can be ordered with white reflectors or chrome reflectors. The chrome reflectors litterally doubled the price of the fixture.... from $75 per unit to $150 per unit for approx 30% higher lumen count. I decided to add two more fixtures (8 instead of 6 ) of the white reflectors which got me the foot candle count I wanted and far less money than the chrome reflectors. The Cooper Lighting site has a lighting generator to help plan lighting levels with various fixtures. I currently have approx 80 foot candels at the floor level down the centre of my shop and it goes downt to approx 70 foot candels near the outer walls. It is bright!!! The lighting engineer suggested I target 70 foot candels as a level for industrial and commercial applications.
        My shop is a timber frame structure that is 24' by 32' and has 14' high ceilings. Walls are plywood with a coat of beige paint. I love the lighting. Very happy to have more lighting than I need especially as my eyes near 50 yrs. I have the lighting on three switches so I can shut off a bank if I don't want full lighting... lets say for poker night. The temp rating is 4100K which I find is a nice blend between incandesent and the cooler flourescence. It has a fairly warm colour feel ralative to normal flouresence.
        I am very happy with this set up. Wouldn't change a thing. I wish it had been cheaper to buy in the fist place but it only hurt once. Many people visiting my shop have commented on how good they percieve the lighting to be... odd realy that people would notice lighting.... but they have.
        Hope this helps
        Terry
        Last edited by Terry in Kitchener; 03-23-2012, 12:38 PM.

        Comment


        • #5

          Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

          Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

          Originally posted by Randy in Calgary View Post
          8) What will you do with this information?
          I hope to make a chart or table or something to show what works well.

          Comment


          • #6

            Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

            Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

            - 200 square foot shop

            - walls covered in cabinets/pegboard/tools

            - quantity 9 four foot two lamp T8 fixtures, cool white lamps

            - excellent lighting (in my eyes opinion)

            regards, Rod.
            Work is the curse of the riding class.

            Comment


            • #7

              Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

              Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

              Does anyone have any idea what would be approaching too bright?

              Comment


              • #8

                Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                24'x24' garage, in which I have everything from our two vehicles, to our bikes, outdoor gear, shelves, etc. One side (~4' x 20') is my 'shop area' with a bench and the majority of my tools squirreled away to pull out as I need them into the centre of my garage.

                Ceiling heights are generally 12', although they drop to ~10' above my work bench. Walls behind and above the bench are a powdery sky blue (the wife picked it), the front walls of the garage are brown pegboard, and the rest is studs and shelves, waiting for me to finish insulating, with the ceiling above most of the main garage whitish raw gyproc for a firebreak on the underside of our bonus room above the garage.

                Up until this winter, I had two incandescent lights, both with 150W bulbs and thought it was bright. I also have a single window in the 4' x 20' shop area and full windows across the top of my 8' garage door.

                This winter, after having to pull out a flashlight to see inside some hand cut mortices I was working on, I decided my eyes were getting old and I needed some more light, so I installed 2 4' T8 shop fluorescent fixtures (end to end) above my workbench in the 4' x 20' shop area. These are just the cheap $30 fixtures that are at our local Totem home centre near our house. In each, and on the advice on here from a few years ago, I put in a single daylight and a single cool white bulb in each fixture (i.e. mixed) - the idea is to try to get the truest colour representation possible when I move stuff from our garage into the house.

                After firing up the lights for the first time (in our -20 C snap, so they took forever to get up to full brightness), I went inside then came back out and was shocked to see that the light flooding in through the top of the garage door was the same colour as the corner where the fluorescents were shining, it was like I had my own bit of outside light trapped inside.

                What would I do different, probably add 4 or maybe 6 more fixtures to cover off the main area of the garage (where the cars park) so the rest of the garage is just as bright when I'm working out there. I'll probably set them up so only one of each comes on, then put the other 2-4 on pull chains that I can flip on when I need the extra light.

                John
                Shut up, wretched cricket of doom...

                Comment


                • #9

                  Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                  Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                  Originally posted by hawk223 View Post
                  Does anyone have any idea what would be approaching too bright?
                  Too bright in what respect?

                  To my lay knowledge of lighting I suspect it would be difficult to make a workshop brighter (without bringing in movie making scale wattage) than working on patio on a bright summer day, which, for most of us, would be ideal lighting, and for which as species we are presumeably adapted (excluding people living in B.C., London/England, etc. - smiley)

                  Wasting electricity, yes, but typically in terms of not having controls to reduce lighting to 'background' levels in areas not being used in a larger workshop.

                  Health effects?
                  ... some people get migraines, etc. from flickering of fluorescents, glare from incorrectly positioned lighting, etc.

                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Over-illumination

                  Most people tend to under illuminate for woodworking, a task which sometimes calls for the same level of lighting as a task such as sewing......



                  good luck

                  michael
                  Last edited by michaely; 03-23-2012, 06:57 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                    Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                    Hi Warren
                    Thinking about your plan to put 10 of the 8' T5's you might be getting close to over bright. But the question is a good one. What you see at a NHL hockey rink might be too bright for working in a shop( Its in the 120 to 130 foot candle range on the ice) . I'll assume you are thinking about low wattage T5's (32 w ) but you still will be way past my 80 foot candles on the floor. We have very similar shop configurations. If I added two more fixtures to my layout to bring it to 10, 4 footers I would have achieved close to 100 foot candles. I have worked in that and find it unnecessary and probably a waste of energy. Believe me 80 foot candles is pretty bright.
                    Terry

                    Comment


                    • #11

                      Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                      Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                      I have an 8' basement cieling (roughly). I have 3 strips of 2 - 2x4 foot bulb enclosed fixtures with plastic lens. These are attached to the joists. Enclosed fixture keeps the dust out and somewhat protects the tubes from direct hits when moving large pieces around. Each strip has it's own switch, so I can light the whole area or just a part - depending on what area I want to work in. The strips are about 8 or 9 feet apart. The walls are off-white and the cieling is dusty 2 x whatever.

                      Certain work areas - like where I do some stained glass work have extra lighting - another 2 bulb fixture plus a light table. The area is multiuse and is about 25x35' and the 3 banks (12 4' tubes) provides ample light. However, as I get older, I find I need more light for detail work and reading so I'm just going to add more task lighting as necessary.

                      The bulbs were free - came out of a large office - where they decided that rather than replacing one at a time, they replaced them all at once. I think the colour is cool white. They were free so I'm not going to complain and I still have a case left.

                      I keep a halogen light around for painting, or where I need low angle lighting.

                      The fixtures were cheap - bought at McDermid Lumber about 20 years ago - no problem with flicker or hum. One fixture is a little slow starting up in summer - works fine in winter (go figure!)

                      Enjoy
                      Glenn
                      Nothing is ever as straightforward as it seems.

                      Glenn from Winnipeg

                      Comment


                      • #12

                        Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                        Michael,

                        I mean too bring where one might need sunglasses.

                        Terry,

                        I forgot to mention they are 54W tubes at 5000 lumens new. That would give me 200,000 lumens or over the 200lumens/sqft.

                        Warren

                        Comment


                        • #13

                          Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                          Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                          Warren.... I think you are going to need sunglasses. I would recommend you talk to a lighting specialist. I found one at my local Graybar outlet. They will be happy to provide you with hard lighting data. You willl be in the NHL hockey arena levels with what you have planned. More than double the light output that I'm currently using.... maybe you can tan while you work!!!
                          Terry

                          Comment


                          • #14

                            Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                            Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                            Originally posted by Terry in Kitchener View Post
                            Warren.... I think you are going to need sunglasses. I would recommend you talk to a lighting specialist. I found one at my local Graybar outlet. They will be happy to provide you with hard lighting data. You willl be in the NHL hockey arena levels with what you have planned. More than double the light output that I'm currently using.... maybe you can tan while you work!!!
                            Terry
                            Are these the same lighting specialists who think one light in the center of a room is sufficient? They usually recommend what people are used to seeing not what they should be seeing. Thus I don't think they will give me the answer I am looking for. I will be around 285 lumens and that doesn't sound bad compared to the recommended min of 200. Maybe I should cost out the dim-able T5's but it's likely double.

                            Comment


                            • #15

                              Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                              Re: What shop lighting do you have and are you happy with it?

                              20x24' garage hobby shop. 8' ceilings Painted walls, pegboard and ceiling white, upped ceiling fluorescents to total 8 double 4' T8 daylight bulbs. Nice and bright.

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