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Mike M
12-24-2007, 10:44 AM
I'd kill for some good comparisons on PAR wells.

I want to try the unique 125's with the debris grate on the glare-shield side, but I was told the rubber gimbals can get melt-stuck to the lamp. Has anyone had this happen? I could speculate it's happened from improper install with a 50 watter, or with a heat-containing lens/cover.

Mike M

nate mullen
12-24-2007, 11:35 AM
I'd kill for some good comparisons on PAR wells.

I want to try the unique 125's with the debris grate on the glare-shield side, but I was told the rubber gimbals can get melt-stuck to the lamp. Has anyone had this happen? I could speculate it's happened from improper install with a 50 watter, or with a heat-containing lens/cover.

Mike M

they are not rated for 50 watt lamps. They are a good vaule well light with a 5 year warrenty. in black or brown. brown is the best. they can also stack. My old rubber gimble did not have the right UV package......they do now.

Mike M
12-24-2007, 04:13 PM
Thanks, Nate.

Is it 5 years because the rubber dry-rots from the heat, etc.? If so I'll just use wells with the steel gimbals, like on the 225's.

klkanders
12-24-2007, 05:52 PM
Hey Mike,
I have done some R & R on some of the Unique 125's....no problem with the rubber gimbles. They had the debris guards also with 35W lamps.

Mike M
12-24-2007, 06:14 PM
Well then you and I are looking at the same thing. I'd rather use 40-50% 125's and the rest nice brass stakes & specialties, in leiu of going with aluminum to try to reduce costs.

The ABS composte wells are what, 15 year? While the 125's are only 5 year. That bugs me. Why are the 125's in the warrenty class with aluminum? Does the heat weaken the PVC housings, or is there a prob with the rubber gimbals?

I agree with you that the 125's seem really usable, 25' leads and they have those daignol debris grates. I don't see anyone else with diagnol debris shields. Kichler doesn't even have leads.

Cast has PAR wells (which I wasn't even aware), but they don't have the diagnol debris guards.

I have the 125's in my demo kit. The rubber gimbal is not quite a substitute for the stainless steel adjustables, but the cost is very low.

irrig8r
12-24-2007, 07:42 PM
Have you checked out the FX one I posted a pic of the other day?

Mike M
12-24-2007, 10:20 PM
I don't remember seeing that! I went to see on the FX site. You mean the CF 35? That looks great. Slanted, glare guard & debris shield, etc. I have no idea what they go for, or about their PAR.

Mike M
12-24-2007, 10:33 PM
Oh, just went back to the other par thread, I remember it now. You haven't used one yet though, right? Unique and fx are the only companies I see with the slant-side grate.

nate mullen
12-25-2007, 11:11 AM
Well then you and I are looking at the same thing. I'd rather use 40-50% 125's and the rest nice brass stakes & specialties, in leiu of going with aluminum to try to reduce costs.

The ABS composte wells are what, 15 year? While the 125's are only 5 year. That bugs me. Why are the 125's in the warrenty class with aluminum? Does the heat weaken the PVC housings, or is there a prob with the rubber gimbals?

I agree with you that the 125's seem really usable, 25' leads and they have those daignol debris grates. I don't see anyone else with diagnol debris shields. Kichler doesn't even have leads.

Cast has PAR wells (which I wasn't even aware), but they don't have the diagnol debris guards.

I have the 125's in my demo kit. The rubber gimbal is not quite a substitute for the stainless steel adjustables, but the cost is very low.

I can't have a lesser expensive well light with the same warranty...........The F225 is a better light hands down.........it also comes in brown...you do have to buy a grate ..................I have the F225 cans injected molded with a special compound for heat and UV. Its also has a patented gimble ring.

nate mullen
12-25-2007, 11:14 AM
I can't have a lesser expensive well light with the same warranty...........The F225 is a better light hands down.........it also comes in brown...you do have to buy a grate ..................I have the F225 cans injected molded with a special compound for heat and UV. Its also has a patented gimble ring.

One more thing....................Don't let the 5 year warrenty fool you. The F125 should last forrever.

Mike M
12-25-2007, 02:37 PM
That's what I figured. The ABS composites are better, but in realty, those 125's are fine. I also understand that a warranty is a part of a marketing expression; i.e., how do you sell those 225's to me if they have the same warrenty as the 125's? But why not make the 225's lifetime and the 125's 15? The reason I ask, is that I'm using the same marketing/warranty angle with my customers, and I don't want to say: those staked fixtures are lifetime, and the wells are all 5 years. See? For the end consumer, I have to present the well with the brass, not one well to another.

If I go with copper fixtures at 15 years, it still sounds silly to say 5 years on the wells. Did you make the wells to go with Kichler and Vista powder coat fixtures? I doubt it. Are you saying Unique makes a fixture in the same longevity class as the aluminum?

I'm just saying it's a big jump from 5 to lifetime. Or 5 to 15 years. 5 sucks. The whole point of the economic well for me is to lower the average fixture cost, maiking the awesome brass fixtures more accessible. But my idea won't work with a huge disparity in warranty language in my proposal to the prospect.

If the best response to me is to avoid the 125's and go with 225's, I'm okay with that. I like the adjustable steel gimbal anyway. But why would you even make the 125?

Don't take me too seriously, I'm a low-volume rookie.

Thanks,

Mike M.

Pro-Scapes
12-25-2007, 03:10 PM
Mike your confusing yourself. with your coastal enviorment you need to use the best stuff you can. Stainless... brass and copper. Stop trying to cut corners with entry level fixtures and offer your clients something special and price it accordingly.

There might very well be times you need to offer something more economical especially just starting out but beware of it and make sure the client is well aware of any short commings on econmy fixture prices.

Mike M
12-25-2007, 05:23 PM
Billy,

Excellent point.

Even so, if 19 out of 42 fixtures are wells, what's wrong with composite PVC as opposed to ABS? I think the 125's are indifferent to the sea locale, but I could be wrong.

The term cost-effective doesn't necessarily mean inferior, just more efficient for the money. In fact, the whole reason I consider the 125's is to make the slick lifetime brass fixtures more attainable for every job.

Now, this is all just theory, if someone has failures in the field with those 125's, like gimbals melting, or PVC housing issues, then let me know.

Is the difference between the ABS composite and PVC composite truly a longevity issue for landscape lighting, especially when using 35 watt PARS not covered in glass?? Or is it just a marketing issue?

It seems strange for Unique to produce a "5-year" product. Against company philosophy. Unless, of course, they are planning on a new line of cheap crappy products.

Mikey

Pro-Scapes
12-25-2007, 05:50 PM
your still confusing yourself

When you say more attainable on the brass fixtures your obviously trying to make things more affordable by cutting costs someplace. You shouldnt do this. If your going to install a top quality brass fixture with a lifetime warranty why compliment it with a sewer drain pipe and a rubber "gimble" in it and why not use something that compliments the quality of what your using. The cost will be of little factor really when you consider it. The labor certainly wont change and your overhead wont change. Its not like the cheaper well light installs itself saving you money.

Price the job with the better quality. Your clients will never ever be upset you watched out for them in the long run.

I want you to close your eyes... imagine stainless steel in one hand and rubber in the other. Which would you choose. Dont make the wrong decision for your clients to save them 30 bucks a fixture. If they are willing to spend on a f125 chances are they will spend on a f225

Mike M
12-25-2007, 06:00 PM
Billy I can't close my eyes, every time I do today I pass out from too much beer and champagne and staying up late and getting up early with kids.

Did you install any aluminum this year? Couldn't I say the same thing?

Alright forget it, I'd rather have the adjustable features anyways. But why in heck do they have the PVC composite, just to mess with my head?

seolatlanta
12-25-2007, 06:38 PM
Hey Mike

I have done some extremely high end homes in Savannah literally 50 feet from salt water. I have used hundreds of the F 125 there as well as mr 16s and 1141s . The problem with pars melting is 100% to do with the fixture being covered with straw or mulch.

Make sure to use plenty of grease on each connection esp at the terminals at the bottom of the lamp. I grew up in Savannah and lived there for 25 years. the salt always wins. Make sure your maintenance is 2x a year and give a warranty that is suitable for you and the homeowner.

Not trying to butt in , just my .02.

Chris J
12-25-2007, 07:38 PM
One more thing....................Don't let the 5 year warrenty fool you. The F125 should last forrever.

This I have a problem with. If it should last forever, then back it up with a warranty that says that.

Mike M
12-25-2007, 09:52 PM
Chris, this is what I'm talking about. I'm speculating that since the 100's are cheaper than the ABS composite with steel gimbal, they feel compelled to separate the two warrenties for marketing reasons. Otherwise, all I can figure is the heat issue caused by poor installation, with possibility of the PVC melting if covered with a lens or matched up with a hot bulb.

Mike M
12-25-2007, 10:07 PM
Here's a q, since PAR bulbs are sealed and don't need to be contained inside little oven-like fixtures, why not make an ABS composite version of something like the big bang with those brass or steel hardware?

Pro-Scapes
12-26-2007, 09:07 AM
Billy I can't close my eyes, every time I do today I pass out from too much beer and champagne and staying up late and getting up early with kids.

Did you install any aluminum this year? Couldn't I say the same thing?

Alright forget it, I'd rather have the adjustable features anyways. But why in heck do they have the PVC composite, just to mess with my head?

theres a difference mike... im 80 miles inland. Your speaking of saltwater front homes.

In 2 and only 2 cases have I used alluminum this year. 1 was a budget job for a friend of my wifes where I used AZT bullets and copper paths to come in at her budget.

the 2nd was a partial rework of an existing system where the lights were 2 years old and other than water spots were FINE and the client asked me to reuse and bring in matching new AZT's.

There will be a 3rd instance next month where I will be installing 2 BK shastas which are also marine grade alluminum. If you were to choose alluminum where your at you better make sure you get the best from hk... bk...vision3 etc... you would be much better off cost wise to use brass and copper unique or bronze casts in your situation.

As for the wells take it from Dave H if he has installed that many coastal and make sure your installation techniques are superior. Bad installation or maint will eat up a fixture just as fast as enviorment will

nate mullen
12-26-2007, 11:13 AM
That's what I figured. The ABS composites are better, but in realty, those 125's are fine. I also understand that a warranty is a part of a marketing expression; i.e., how do you sell those 225's to me if they have the same warrenty as the 125's? But why not make the 225's lifetime and the 125's 15? The reason I ask, is that I'm using the same marketing/warranty angle with my customers, and I don't want to say: those staked fixtures are lifetime, and the wells are all 5 years. See? For the end consumer, I have to present the well with the brass, not one well to another.

If I go with copper fixtures at 15 years, it still sounds silly to say 5 years on the wells. Did you make the wells to go with Kichler and Vista powder coat fixtures? I doubt it. Are you saying Unique makes a fixture in the same longevity class as the aluminum?

I'm just saying it's a big jump from 5 to lifetime. Or 5 to 15 years. 5 sucks. The whole point of the economic well for me is to lower the average fixture cost, maiking the awesome brass fixtures more accessible. But my idea won't work with a huge disparity in warranty language in my proposal to the prospect.

If the best response to me is to avoid the 125's and go with 225's, I'm okay with that. I like the adjustable steel gimbal anyway. But why would you even make the 125?

Don't take me too seriously, I'm a low-volume rookie.

Thanks,

Mike M.
When you place a F125 with its plastic grate next to a F22f with brass or copper debris guard, or the copper (15 year warrenty) next to the brass ( life warranty) its easy to see and understand the conprairson. FYI .....I've been making the F125 5 years before I started Unique..................I can't kill my first child even though it not as strong or pretty as my other kids. I know a lots of low - volume rockies that have turned to high - volume Lighting artist.