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View Full Version : The Good, The Bad, or just Odd


Eden Lights
10-18-2007, 09:44 PM
This was is just odd. I took these during lunch today with a client. High end stuff, but it seemed like a very odd design. Maybe electricians had them aimed wrong. I will check it out one night soon.

Eden Lights
10-18-2007, 09:52 PM
Poor Aiming, 2.5Mil new home with two loaded up transformers and most ALL of the fixtures had very poor aiming and positioning. Grazing fixtures only a couple of inches from the brick and tree uplighting was aimed like the pic. You could tell that the job was flagged for a installer, but alot of the flags got lost. All the wells were aimed good.

bmwsmity
10-18-2007, 10:53 PM
love the last one on the tree!

check that first place out at night and let us know if those lights do anything more than raise the electric bill! :)

NightScenes
10-18-2007, 10:53 PM
Looks like some real high end work Eddie. Maybe you should find out who did the job and put em on the payroll. LOL. You know I'm just joking you, right?

JoeyD
10-19-2007, 10:33 AM
First lights look like a BK or Lumiere............

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 04:46 PM
Can is Lumiere and Bullet is BK.

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 04:51 PM
This subdivision is full of these pathlights, I thought about hosting a all day pathlight staking marathon? Say $35-40 per fixture plus long stake and new lamp. Think I could do 100-150 in a day? Maybe 75??

Chris J
10-23-2007, 05:06 PM
What happened?

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 05:14 PM
Stakes are very short and maintenance of the lighting systems are not very often. THIS not my work?

Pro-Scapes
10-23-2007, 06:03 PM
What happened?

Im guessing the plane landed on the runway that was created in the middle of the subdivision ??? this is just a wild guess that a jet would knock the lights crooked.

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 06:31 PM
Im guessing the plane landed on the runway that was created in the middle of the subdivision ??? this is just a wild guess that a jet would knock the lights crooked.

You bring up a good point, but what other design options would they have?

Mike M
10-23-2007, 06:44 PM
Weird.

I was just at a "quaint" architectural review board building in one of the most expensive developments in the county, they had crooked path lights like those, one was even turned backwards, and there were two tree lights on at 1 pm.

I asked about their guidelines, and they said, no up-lights. No accent lighting on the buildings. Just path lights and downlights to help people see for security and safety. "We don't want to spook the animals." This made me wonder if they were Canadian. Just kidding James.

I talked about strategies to eliminate glare and I suggested some fixtures for longevity. The woman was excited and asked for a handful of brochures.

By the way, does anyone here use "permaposts," etc., for path lights?

Thanks,

Mike

NightLightingFX
10-23-2007, 06:53 PM
You bring up a good point, but what other design options would they have?

You guys have more experience than me, but this is my oppinion based on the photo. I personally don't like to use area lights - especially when they are in the open standing alone and definatly when they create the runway effect as in this situation. As far as other design options what if you installed area lights behind the shrubs. Most of the fixture would be hidden by the shrubs except for the top. Since the fixture would be a little higher you would probably get enough light to the sidwalk.
~Ned

Pro-Scapes
10-23-2007, 07:20 PM
this past weekend we saw some really large china hats. I think they were around 7ft tall. Thoes spaced much further apart would of been alot better in my opinion.

Perhaps raised beds with illuminated walls would of been better yet ? Even thoes recessed paths would of been even better.

Mike M... Yes we have used perma posts extensivly on a project with SamIV. Much stronger hold especially in sandy soils. They are plastic and can strip out but are a MUST in my opinion for commercial installs. Cast makes one with a bronze cap that wont strip out. Waiting to see if someone will come up with a brass topped one. They are esentially just a pvc pipe with a threaded cap on one end. Mike, You may really like them in your sandy soils there.

Mike M
10-23-2007, 07:40 PM
Billy, thanks for the tip. The ARB lady wanted me to get some catalogs of fixtures, so when I stop by I'm gonna bring a perma post or equivilent with me and offer to retrofit the path lights they have. I'm just curious if the threads are compatible.

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 07:47 PM
Here is another similar challenge, I tried to sell outdoor floor lamps and also running wire up a table umbrella for a down light. Client needs more light for eating and etc. in this area, no trees for downlighting, no places on home for a good angle, and etc.

Take a look at those bollards, maybe they would work in place of those pathlights at the round about. Nahhhh.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
10-23-2007, 07:58 PM
They look like Vista's knock off of the Nightscaping Illuminator fixture to me. No surprise they are all crooked if they were installed with the impotent plastic 'stake' that Vista provides with all their fixtures.

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 08:03 PM
this past weekend we saw some really large china hats. I think they were around 7ft tall. Thoes spaced much further apart would of been alot better in my opinion.

Perhaps raised beds with illuminated walls would of been better yet ? Even thoes recessed paths would of been even better.

Mike M... Yes we have used perma posts extensivly on a project with SamIV. Much stronger hold especially in sandy soils. They are plastic and can strip out but are a MUST in my opinion for commercial installs. Cast makes one with a bronze cap that wont strip out. Waiting to see if someone will come up with a brass topped one. They are esentially just a pvc pipe with a threaded cap on one end. Mike, You may really like them in your sandy soils there.

I have never been a fan of any type of plain round stake: Metal, PVC, or other.

Pro-Scapes
10-23-2007, 08:14 PM
I have never been a fan of any type of plain round stake: Metal, PVC, or other.

they come with 4 slats to make a cross hatch (tic tac toe board) around the post. They are much stronger than anything I have seen supplied with a fixture. We used an irrigation trech shovel to dig out the wet sand and then stuck em in. The next day the things were rock solid without using the tic tac toe things.

Whats an alternative to the large PVC ones ??

Chris J
10-23-2007, 08:20 PM
What happened?

This question was not directed at you eddie. I had replied to your post with a comment about the original installer not providing a service plan, and it disappeared immediately. I just don't get it lately....

Eden Lights
10-23-2007, 08:21 PM
they come with 4 slats to make a cross hatch (tic tac toe board) around the post. They are much stronger than anything I have seen supplied with a fixture. We used an irrigation trech shovel to dig out the wet sand and then stuck em in. The next day the things were rock solid without using the tic tac toe things.

Whats an alternative to the large PVC ones ??

Permaposts are great, but I would prefer a 14" Kichler stake for LV pathlights. For some reason I hate to dig? The Tri-spike stakes are great also, but the prices have doubled in the last couple of years, so we haven't speced them alot.

NiteTymeIlluminations
10-23-2007, 08:27 PM
In Jamaica we use Perma posts but cut them in half and order twice as many caps...works great, but ya still have to dig...

As far as the dining area...

www.neoz.com

bright enough to eat and dine by...

Lite4
10-23-2007, 08:40 PM
Eddie,
On the dining area what about spanning the area over the dining area with some very thin stranded cable and anchor and stretch tight to the two opposing roofs. I might look into hanging some very small stainless fixtures from the wire, but would have to energise the stranded cable and isolate it from grounding out on the roof. I know they make interior 12 volt lights that hang on the energised wire and can be moved anywhere along the length of the wire, but don't know if it is feasable for exterior fixtures. Just a thought.

Lite4
10-23-2007, 09:22 PM
On the runway path lights, I would suggest taking the small multiple path lights away and do something more upscale. Perhaps larger 12 volt carriage lamps. I have used their carriage lamps in the past. Their quality is not terrible for these style of fixtures. Check out the site.

www.spjlighting.com/products/*/*/2882

LightingWebsite
11-01-2007, 05:18 PM
Drunken sentinels... :drinkup:

rockytop00
11-01-2007, 06:25 PM
Interesting looking hang down lights... weird.

Pro-Scapes
11-01-2007, 07:26 PM
Permaposts are great, but I would prefer a 14" Kichler stake for LV pathlights. For some reason I hate to dig? The Tri-spike stakes are great also, but the prices have doubled in the last couple of years, so we haven't speced them alot.

with all the crazy designs you do your worried about digging in a bit ? I thought you traded the lader and spider lift for diggers anyways lol

YardPro
11-01-2007, 07:59 PM
They look like Vista's knock off of the Nightscaping Illuminator fixture to me. No surprise they are all crooked if they were installed with the impotent plastic 'stake' that Vista provides with all their fixtures.

i have seen no difference in the other brands standard stake.. cast, hadco and vista are all about the same size stake...

more than likely a problem of loose, tilled soil. vista offers longer stakes for this application.

Pro-Scapes
11-01-2007, 08:37 PM
i have seen no difference in the other brands standard stake.. cast, hadco and vista are all about the same size stake...

more than likely a problem of loose, tilled soil. vista offers longer stakes for this application.

just about all manufactures offer a heavey duty stake.. Something more substational than a stock stake should be used in most applications with loose soil conditions. I am now a fan of using heavy duty stakes (perma posts or similar) on almost all walkway mounted area lights. I would think one of the stihl small augers would make quick work of installing these in harder soils.

irrig8r
11-01-2007, 09:10 PM
Here is another similar challenge, I tried to sell outdoor floor lamps and also running wire up a table umbrella for a down light. Client needs more light for eating and etc. in this area, no trees for downlighting, no places on home for a good angle, and etc.

Take a look at those bollards, maybe they would work in place of those pathlights at the round about. Nahhhh.

Can you sell them on an arbor for downlighting from?

YardPro
11-02-2007, 08:58 PM
just about all manufactures offer a heavey duty stake.. Something more substational than a stock stake should be used in most applications with loose soil conditions. I am now a fan of using heavy duty stakes (perma posts or similar) on almost all walkway mounted area lights. I would think one of the stihl small augers would make quick work of installing these in harder soils.

i agree.
i only said what i did in response to the accusation that vista had inferior stakes.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
11-02-2007, 09:16 PM
i agree.
i only said what i did in response to the accusation that vista had inferior stakes.

Accusation or Truth? Not to go on too much, but I find those 8" plastic stakes to be completely inferior. They are simply too short to hold up a good quality path light and they even struggle holding a ground hugging flood in place.

When we install Vista fixtures, we generally build a new stake. We take 1 1/2dia. pvc conduit, cut it to length (depending on soils can be 10" to 18" long)top it with a 1 1/2 "Dishwasher Attachment" bushing, Screw a lock ring onto the 1/2 npt stem with a ground wire attached to a ground spike, drill a hole through the PVC for the feed wire. The we bash the stake into the ground with a mallet, feed the wires and make connections inside the new stake, mount and aim.

Sounds like a lot of work, but we dont spend any time straightening path lights each spring.

Have a great day.

Chris J
11-02-2007, 09:56 PM
When driving a 10"-18" pipe into the ground, how on earth do you make sure that you drive it in completely plumb and level. With this type of mounting, there would be absolutely no room for adjustment once the pvc is driven into the ground. Even if you were just slightly off, the only way to make the fixture perfectly plumb in finalizing the installation would be to bend it at the base of the stem. Please explain your method as I am perplexed at the moment.

Thanks,
Chris

Pro-Scapes
11-02-2007, 10:06 PM
When driving a 10"-18" pipe into the ground, how on earth do you make sure that you drive it in completely plumb and level. With this type of mounting, there would be absolutely no room for adjustment once the pvc is driven into the ground. Even if you were just slightly off, the only way to make the fixture perfectly plumb in finalizing the installation would be to bend it at the base of the stem. Please explain your method as I am perplexed at the moment.

Thanks,
Chris

I dont know about up in rocky canada but an irrigation shovel made pretty quick work of installing permaposts in sand and loose topsoil beds. Couple of good digs and then push the post in the last few inches to get it in. Do it with the fixture already screwed in and a couple of feet of slack either inside the post or wrapped around it. Use a level as your back filling and tamp it in tight with your mallet. The weakest point of this is the threads could still strip on the pvc permapost but then again I would rather sacrafice a 15 buck permapost vs a 100 buck fixture.

Chris J
11-02-2007, 10:21 PM
Maybe I'm just in the clouds tonight, but I still don't understand the thinking behind all of this. If you are making the soil loose enough to "push" the stake in by hand, then what is the point of using extra sturdy stakes? I've always used the 3-fin composite stakes from Kichler. I scratch a small bowl into the soil with a garden claw to accept the top of the stake and have enough room to twist the fixture wire while I'm mounting the fixture onto the stake. I always pound the stake into the ground first, and screw the fixture in afterwards. I don't experience the problems that you guys are describing, and our soil is sometimes very sandy and soft.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
11-03-2007, 01:39 AM
When driving a 10"-18" pipe into the ground, how on earth do you make sure that you drive it in completely plumb and level. With this type of mounting, there would be absolutely no room for adjustment once the pvc is driven into the ground. Even if you were just slightly off, the only way to make the fixture perfectly plumb in finalizing the installation would be to bend it at the base of the stem. Please explain your method as I am perplexed at the moment.

Thanks,
Chris

Hi Chris.

It is a bit of a talent for sure. I just hold the stake as plumb as I can and then start hitting it with a 3lb (big) rubber mallet. You have the opportunity to straighten it a bit as you go. If you do end up with a slight angle on the stake, you simply start pounding the earth on the side of the stake to straighten it some. It works quite well for me.

Once it is in place it stays that way permanently.

One thing a lot of you Southern guys dont have to deal with is frost/ freezing ground. Using short plastic stakes up here just doesnt work well. The frost heaves the ground and pretty much spits the fixtures out each year. My method seems to eliminate that problem

Have a great day.

pete scalia
11-03-2007, 08:43 AM
Hi Chris.

It is a bit of a talent for sure. I just hold the stake as plumb as I can and then start hitting it with a 3lb (big) rubber mallet. You have the opportunity to straighten it a bit as you go. If you do end up with a slight angle on the stake, you simply start pounding the earth on the side of the stake to straighten it some. It works quite well for me.

Once it is in place it stays that way permanently.

One thing a lot of you Southern guys dont have to deal with is frost/ freezing ground. Using short plastic stakes up here just doesnt work well. The frost heaves the ground and pretty much spits the fixtures out each year. My method seems to eliminate that problem

Have a great day.

The ground expelling the fixture is mother earth's way of saying I don't want you here. Perhaps we should re think ground mounted fixtures. Maybe we are attempting to accomplish an unnatural and impure act by installing them.

irrig8r
11-03-2007, 10:54 AM
The ground expelling the fixture is mother earth's way of saying I don't want you here. Perhaps we should re think ground mounted fixtures. Maybe we are attempting to accomplish an unnatural and impure act by installing them.

Pete, you crack me up sometimes. :drinkup:

bmwsmity
11-03-2007, 10:54 AM
Maybe I'm just in the clouds tonight, but I still don't understand the thinking behind all of this. If you are making the soil loose enough to "push" the stake in by hand, then what is the point of using extra sturdy stakes? I've always used the 3-fin composite stakes from Kichler. I scratch a small bowl into the soil with a garden claw to accept the top of the stake and have enough room to twist the fixture wire while I'm mounting the fixture onto the stake. I always pound the stake into the ground first, and screw the fixture in afterwards. I don't experience the problems that you guys are describing, and our soil is sometimes very sandy and soft.

ditto chris. the kichler stakes seem to hold pretty darn well. i did notice however that they aren't always threaded in a way that is a perfect 90-deg between the top flat part of the stake and the threads, as I tried to use a level when pounding in the stake.

in our soil, which is relatively hard and clay-like, i just pound them in now, then use a level at 2 different 90-degree points on the path light stem to ensure it is straight. i make adjustments by pounding the soil with a hand-held sledge at the base of the stake.

this method seems to be pretty effective, as the jobs i go back to later on still have straight paths.

Lite4
11-03-2007, 11:00 AM
Pete your such a greener, Ha ha.
In my neck of the woods I have trouble just getting the stake halfway in the ground with all the clay and cliche soil we have here. If I get down by the river it is nothing but river rock. Good luck with the malet here, might try the 20 pound sledge. I like the idea james has with the 1 1/2" pvc though, especially on the path lights as I do not tend to have to move those once they are in place. I would use a small flower bulb planting auger on a drill to make my hole so there is less soil being disturbed around the pipe. Just my thoughts.

klkanders
11-03-2007, 12:54 PM
You guys are a Hoot!
" Maybe we are attempting to accomplish an unnatural and impure act by installing them" Funny stuff Pete!
Ditto Smity and Chris J, The supplied Kichler stake works great for me in most applications. If I have to install something in a sand box I will make other provisions.

irrig8r
11-03-2007, 01:19 PM
... I would use a small flower bulb planting auger on a drill to make my hole so there is less soil being disturbed around the pipe....

I use one often enough. It's kind of wearing out at the shank though. I think it was called a "daffo-drill". I bought a sturdier one sold under the Echo brand, but haven't had to use it yet. I just stick it on my 1/2" chuck Bosch hammer drill and it does the trick in hard dry soil....even a little rocky.

JoeyD
11-06-2007, 10:11 AM
Unique makes a Perma Post called the Zero G Docking Post. It comes with our 5 ft tall Area Lights the Endeavor and Expedition. It is also available for individual purchase.

On top of that we will have a brass top for it soon as well.