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Eden Lights
01-22-2008, 11:38 PM
I really haven't done a install in several years without some number of fully shrouded fixtures, but yet most of the major fixtures lines discussed here don't offer a fully shrouded glare free fixture. All the top designers that speak at conferences, classes, and etc. preach proper shielding as a major focus. Not only does the lens need to be recessed and fully shrouded, the finish needs to be a flat and glare free coating also. We have always used BK, Lumiere, and HK for this need and now we also use the New Vista fixture when working within a tight budget.

pete scalia
01-23-2008, 12:32 AM
I really haven't done a install in several years without some number of fully shrouded fixtures, but yet most of the major fixtures lines discussed here don't offer a fully shrouded glare free fixture. All the top designers that speak at conferences, classes, and etc. preach proper shielding as a major focus. Not only does the lens need to be recessed and fully shrouded, the finish needs to be a flat and glare free coating also. We have always used BK, Lumiere, and HK for this need and now we also use the New Vista fixture when working within a tight budget.

Those fixtures are a maintenance nightmare as they fill with debris and block the transmission of light.

Eden Lights
01-23-2008, 12:56 AM
Those fixtures are a maintenance nightmare as they fill with debris and block the transmission of light.

While we just started using the Vista 2220 LS and I can't speak of it's Lumen depreciation due to water spots, the Lumiere 203, the BK Delta stars, and the HK fully shrouded ZX16 have performed flawlessly. The Delta star is probably the worst drainer of the three, but we still only have minimal frosting of the lens that wipes right off during maintenance checkups. We have one BK Delta star install in a wooded area that is three years old and have never had to do any lens cleaning. Everybody's different, but if the viewing angles are 360 degrees the fixture is fully shrouded or a grated in-grade in all of our installs.

Eden Lights
01-23-2008, 01:05 AM
Ok, I am working on a proposal for a Blvd and we are uplighting and downlighting trees in the center islands. Five to six fixtures per tree around the canopy and one hanging downlight in the center of each tree. Homes on each side of trees with sidewalks on bothsides along with car traffic on both sides. What fixture would you guy's spec? We have fully shrouded fixtures with Hex cell louvers in our plan. We also have the ok to place our fixtures and then the mulch beds will go at least three feet outside of that.

Mike M
01-23-2008, 08:18 AM
That's weird, last night I was leaving a community that had me thinking about an identical problem. A line of several mature live oaks in an island between two lanes. Glare everywhere.

All those angles for up lights for the large spreading canopies were in one way or another whacking drivers in the face.

The only thing I could think was grated wells with 90 degree aiming, several feet away from the trunks, to hit the canopy, combined with long-shielded downlights to illuminate the trunk (I would avoid uplights for trunks). Unique makes nice brass "growth" rings for ingrades which should help keep plant matter and mulch away from fixtures.

This is where I would include in the budget a landscaper to place a few dark slow-growing evergreens (hollies, etc.) placed between oncoming cars and the fixtures.

I have no problem manipulating the landscape as needed to help achieve illumination goals.

Pro-Scapes
01-23-2008, 08:32 AM
We often times add small ornamentals with clients approval just for this reason or if a fixture MUST go out in plain view we plant something near it like Aztec grass or something to make the fixture less noticable.

I think the main reason more lines dont have the 360 or a better shroud is they are striving to be compact. Making a large shroud would cut off the photometrics more. I would like to see more fixtures with a preinstalled large cell cut off louver.

I really like how low profile the 15384 is but it does little to hide glare. Same with many of the standard mr16 bullets out there.

Lite4
01-23-2008, 11:06 AM
Eddie,
The Vista is a sound light for the budget conscience. I have used them for years without trouble. For uplighting trees I found the vista 5271 inground MR-16 with a partial shroud and hexlouver to be very effective. The pics show the fixture under the trees with the louvers, (w/o) the shroud. I should have used them here. The glare from them is dramitically exagerated due to a 30 second exposure on my camers. Even without the shield though, there is minimal glare at all. Sorry for the bad pics

Eden Lights
01-23-2008, 12:03 PM
The Vista 2220 LS is new and it can eliminate most glare for 360 degrees.

Lite4
01-23-2008, 06:45 PM
Eddie,
I guess I havn't tried one of those fully shrouded ones yet. I don't usually use a bullet for direct uplighting but I am sure it will work.

Eden Lights
01-23-2008, 07:18 PM
Tim, the 5270 series is a solid light for the money and we use it alot when the fixture must be placed in the turf, but even the 5271 is no where close to glare free. We have a rule that if you can see the glass during the day than it will be a negative in the final composition.

Eden Lights
01-23-2008, 07:40 PM
Eddie,
The Vista is a sound light for the budget conscience. I have used them for years without trouble. For uplighting trees I found the vista 5271 inground MR-16 with a partial shroud and hexlouver to be very effective. The pics show the fixture under the trees with the louvers, (w/o) the shroud. I should have used them here. The glare from them is dramatically exagerated due to a 30 second exposure on my camers. Even without the shield though, there is minimal glare at all. Sorry for the bad pics

About six years ago I had just started working with a Architect that was very demanding and had an excellent talent for all types of design. The very first job I did for him I illuminated some mature maple trees with the 5271 and I thought it looked pretty good, but you have to remember it is hard to be critical of your own work considering I had placed all of them at night and then buried them all with tender loving care the next day. He called me before I could get back the next night and said he loved everything, but he didn't know I was installing a UFO landing pad under the big maple. I learned alot from him and now he is retired. We ended up having a huge sweeping bed made under that tree and went with Lumiere 203's, on some we even had accessory shrouds installed. We had someone standing on two different streets on glare watch as when made adjustments to the dozen or so fixtures. From that job forward we used the BK square well star on his projects with the grate painted flat black.

Lite4
01-23-2008, 11:45 PM
I admitadly have not been as careful of glare as I probably could be on some jobs for the sake of trying to keep it budget conscience for the homeowner. I have very limited product lines here, but I need to look into better shrouding for sure. I will look at those fixtures you named. Thanks for the info.

ChampionLS
01-24-2008, 01:41 AM
Has anyone used the new Vista Rail Light that's similar to Integrals? I'd like to see what it looks like up close, and installed.

sprinkler guy
01-24-2008, 01:48 AM
Eden,

Not sure what you are paying or the BK DeltaStar, but take a look at the FX Macchio Ultimo (MU). Side by side it's tough to tell them apart. The MU has a deep well that lets you recess the bulb more than an inch from the glass. This obviously affects the photometrics, but handles the glare real well. Also, in copper, look at Nightscaping's Coverlighter. It offers an adjustable shroud, and comes standard with a hex baffle installed.

Just a couple of suggestions.

Eden Lights
01-24-2008, 11:01 AM
Eden,

Not sure what you are paying or the BK DeltaStar, but take a look at the FX Macchio Ultimo (MU). Side by side it's tough to tell them apart. The MU has a deep well that lets you recess the bulb more than an inch from the glass. This obviously affects the photometrics, but handles the glare real well. Also, in copper, look at Nightscaping's Coverlighter. It offers an adjustable shroud, and comes standard with a hex baffle installed.

Just a couple of suggestions.

The MU is a nice fixture and the lamp is recessed into the fixture alot like the K-15384, but it's a bad as any fixture out there when it comes to glare due to the lens being right on the edge with little or no shroud. I own a MU from when they came out because FX hyped it as superior in glare control, but it's a poor choice for 360 degree viewing angles and or a down light. The BK Nitestar II is more like the MU, the Delta star has a full 1" shroud past the lens on the B cap and 1-3" shroud (45 degree angle) on the A cap. We lost a excellent source on BK, so the party may be over I am afraid.

I will look at the Coverliter, but I can't see them without buying them since we really never come across any Nightscaping products on the shelf around here.

sprinkler guy
01-25-2008, 01:12 AM
The MU is a nice fixture and the lamp is recessed into the fixture alot like the K-15384, but it's a bad as any fixture out there when it comes to glare due to the lens being right on the edge with little or no shroud. I own a MU from when they came out because FX hyped it as superior in glare control, but it's a poor choice for 360 degree viewing angles and or a down light. The BK Nitestar II is more like the MU, the Delta star has a full 1" shroud past the lens on the B cap and 1-3" shroud (45 degree angle) on the A cap. We lost a excellent source on BK, so the party may be over I am afraid.

I will look at the Coverliter, but I can't see them without buying them since we really never come across any Nightscaping products on the shelf around here.

I'm trying to remember the last time I had to fight a 360 glare issue, and a specific instance doesn't come to mind, so I haven't really had to fight the glare of the glass. I also never use the MU as a downlight. I either use the FX (TS) or the Unique Gaurdian. The Gaurdian is especially nice because of the 25' lead, and it has an adjustable shroud like the Nightscaping Coverlighter. As for seeing the Coverliter, call Nightscaping up and have the local rep set you up with a sample.

Mike M
01-25-2008, 08:33 AM
Eddie;

First, disclaimer: I'm not answering your question as much as I am just trying to understand it. I am also asking questions myself from a beginner POV.

I am interested in the same type of solution for a similar application. You and James are the go-to guys on niche fixture selection, so let me know if you find the seemingly Holy Grail for road medians.

Until then, please look at what I'm thinking if you have a moment, correct me if I'm wrong. I'd appreciate the feedback.

Your question has to do with a 360 viewing angle, but your application in the roadway does not seem to require it. According to my understanding, your two primary viewing angles are at 90 degrees each. That totals 180 degrees. You can search for a deeply recessed lamp without a surface lense, and one that somehow won't collect debris, or, you can just have small plant material installed at each fixture, at off set angles (no need to fully surround).

To illustrate my 180 vs. 360 viewing description, just sketch or visualize a large circle repressenting a 360 degree glare source. Draw two parrellel arrows for the lanes (opposing directions). Now shade the quarters of the circle that represents areas which wont be viewed once the lanes pass the center (unless drivers stare in their rearview mirror). Those would be good placements for vertical or angled aiming.

It just seems apparent that the trick in this app is shielding by other means than relying on fixture housing. That's the big advantage of landscape lighting vs. structural lighting.

Eden Lights
01-25-2008, 09:07 AM
Car traffic going both directions on one side of fixture and pedestrian traffic on the other side going both directions. A fully shrouded fixture is needed.

Taking a look at your night time pictures is a good review of your work. Go back and read chapter two of the Landscape Lighting book. You know how much a difference it makes when you aim a fixture just right, get just the right lamp installed, and or get the voltage up to specs, how it can change the overall look--------well eliminating glare will add that much more to look of your designs.....This includes all!! outside light sources, which we haven't really discussed.

Mike M
01-25-2008, 09:56 AM
Car traffic going both directions on one side of fixture and pedestrian traffic on the other side going both directions. A fully shrouded fixture is needed. Eden Lights

Sorry, your app is very different than my scenario.

Not doubting the important topics covered under Moyer's Landscape Lighting Book (chapters 1 and 2), I still think you are putting too much on housing and not enough on extraneous shielding. Figure 3.7 in her book shows best of both: carefully chosen step light fixtures with nice shields, and an uplighted tree shielded by a wall.

I see (7) different fixtures with completely different shrouds in figure 4.13, for experimenting with uplights. I think they all look goofy and if I had to use those things I'd still shield them from daylight viewing, too.

I have no pics, but with the issue of pedestrians, especially if in close proximity, you have more than 360 viewing (a 2-D issue), since they are at a high angle above the plane of the fixture. If the walkway is literally adjacent then you have the possibility of bumped or kicked fixtures aiming in directions you never planned.

My 1 cent: compromise your preferences with quality grated wells with skirts or maybe even no up lights from the ground level. Personally, I think safety for foot traffic is a priority, and this sounds more like a low profile commercial area-light application with an IDA (Dark Sky) approved fixture.

The most important thing I learned from reading Moyer's book is the importance of investing in a variety of fixtures and viewing mock set-ups when the sun goes down.

irrig8r
01-25-2008, 10:44 AM
I've never seen this, but wouldn't be a good idea for someone to some out with a full 360 shroud with an opening for water and debris to pass through just on the low side?

Basically what I mean is a "D" shaped cut-out, but maybe with an extra baffle so excess light doesn't bleed through too. Seen anything like this?

Eden Lights
01-25-2008, 12:40 PM
I really haven't done a install in several years without some number of fully shrouded fixtures, but yet most of the major fixtures lines discussed here don't offer a fully shrouded glare free fixture. All the top designers that speak at conferences, classes, and etc. preach proper shielding as a major focus. Not only does the lens need to be recessed and fully shrouded, the finish needs to be a flat and glare free coating also. We have always used BK, Lumiere, and HK for this need and now we also use the New Vista fixture when working within a tight budget.

I am not going to beat a dead horse, any of these fixtures I have shown you will work. The problem is nobody is using them, but that is fine by me.

Eden Lights
01-25-2008, 05:09 PM
I am going to beat a dead horse: Example is a center island with 360 degree views, composition looks the same no matter where you stand. This cannot be done without a fully shrouded fixture. I started this thread, because many manufacturer's don't even have a fully shrouded fixture in their line up and that' just hard to understand?

sprinkler guy
01-25-2008, 11:04 PM
Eddie,

Funny how timely your thread is. Yesterday I said I haven't had to deal with the 360 issue, and today I looked at a job that has that issue and needs it fixed on the revamp. A large multi-trunk Peppermint Willow sits in a planter island that has sidewalks wrapping around it. The current set-up is a pair of copper bullet uplights with no shrouds, bulb flush against the glass. I'm suggesting 5 lights around the tree, but he wants the lights all black - no more copper. Does the Lumiere do a better job than the BK?

Pro-Scapes
01-25-2008, 11:37 PM
Hey guys. Have you ever looked at the vision 3 line ? Fl1 with the c2 cap.

Go Halogen
01-28-2008, 08:33 PM
I have to agree. The Vista 2220-LS has done a terrific job for me. But lately I have added another one to my arsenal.. The Vista 2219-LS-SP. I use it for down lighting from trees (its is very similar to the CAST Tree Light) but much less expensive. I also use it to light roof peaks from the ground. You can throw light good distances and keep it very tight with the correct 35 watt lamp.

You should check it out.

-Andy

Chris J
01-28-2008, 11:09 PM
What do you guys think about the composite line as opposed to brass or copper in ocean front applications? I have a repete customer who is building a multi-million dollor ocean front home, but his "landscaper" is in his ear about doing the lighting. I've explained to him the differences between us, and he has stated that "I'm his lighting guy", but I think he is about to go cheep on me. When he sees the difference in cost between my solid brass install vs. the landscaper's deal, he's going to flip his lid. He mentioned composite to reduce cost, and even asked me to work out a better deal with the manu for a discount because he's a developer. You can be certain that I understand that the majority of the cost is associated with design experience and knowledge of wiring/technique, but he wants me to get the cost down in any way that I can. I know I'm still going to be probably triple the landscaper's quote, but I need to know that composite is a viable alternative (I have very little experience with composite). Any input?

Thanks,

Eden Lights
01-28-2008, 11:30 PM
The only salt around here is the salt I had on my turnip greens for lunch, Sorry.

Chris J
01-28-2008, 11:36 PM
OK, but any experience with composite Eddie? Like/Dislike?

Eden Lights
01-28-2008, 11:59 PM
I have used the Vista 5270 series for several years and they have been rock solid and I guess the lower knuckle on most all Vista fixtures are now composite. The only draw black is going to be the fixture's finish colors new and old. You may want to get some samples to show your client. Oh and they feel cheap in your hand, but that might be a quiet sales tool for you to push the brass. "Mr. Joe, here is our brass fixture and this is the matching color in Composite" In his mind the weight difference will be overwhelming.

Eden Lights
01-29-2008, 12:03 AM
Eddie,

Funny how timely your thread is. Yesterday I said I haven't had to deal with the 360 issue, and today I looked at a job that has that issue and needs it fixed on the revamp. A large multi-trunk Peppermint Willow sits in a planter island that has sidewalks wrapping around it. The current set-up is a pair of copper bullet uplights with no shrouds, bulb flush against the glass. I'm suggesting 5 lights around the tree, but he wants the lights all black - no more copper. Does the Lumiere do a better job than the BK?

I think the Black finish on a Lumiere is probably the most glare free finish on any stock fixture that I have ever seen. The fixture design is also one of the best when it comes to adjustment lockup and waterproofing of the stem.

Lite4
01-29-2008, 12:52 AM
Chris, I have used a good number of the composite MR wells that vista puts out in really wet locations. They seem to hold up pretty well so far (about 3 yrs), not a really long time by lighting standards, but they are in good shape. There is just nothing to corrode. It is composite man. They arent pretty, but they work well.
Eddie, Vista is expanding their copper line this year. I guess they are buying a lot of copper milling equipment so we may see that 2220 in copper. All in all Vista makes a pretty solid line of lighting equipment. Their powder coated alluminum is about what you would expect, but their copper line is quite nice. Chris you may consider Vistas powder coated line for your developer. They are pretty affordable for the base end of lighting.

Lite4
01-29-2008, 12:55 AM
Eddie, Nice job on the Jap maple. Good translucent light all the way through the canopy. Your right about the LS. No glare at all. I just dont like looking at a bullet sticking out of the ground that much. I would probably go for a fully shrouded MR in ground though to hide the fixture a bit more. Anyway, nice job.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
01-29-2008, 07:46 AM
Eddie,

Funny how timely your thread is. Yesterday I said I haven't had to deal with the 360 issue, and today I looked at a job that has that issue and needs it fixed on the revamp. A large multi-trunk Peppermint Willow sits in a planter island that has sidewalks wrapping around it. The current set-up is a pair of copper bullet uplights with no shrouds, bulb flush against the glass. I'm suggesting 5 lights around the tree, but he wants the lights all black - no more copper. Does the Lumiere do a better job than the BK?

Gregg. I have said it in the past and will say it again: Who doesn't make a good bullet uplight?

You will find a price difference between the Lumiere 203 and the BK Deltastar for sure, the difference is in fit, finish and build quality.

The Lumiere uses silicone to mount their socket in place and it isnt that great a method as it can is pretty randomly centered. I have had out of the box failure with the 203 because of the wire method in the stem, I have had the SS hex screw in the knuckle break upon tightening too, but I think they have that issue resolved now. If you are in an environement with a lot of leaf debris in the autumn, be prepared to have maintenance people clean out the shroud regularly.

The BK Deltastar / Nitestar line up is well machined and rather nicely made. It is excellent for an uplight but DO NOT TURN THEM AROUND! I installed hundreds of them as a tree mounted downlight about 4 years ago. THEY LEAK! 22% of the fixtures I installed as a downlight had significant amounts of water inside the body within 6 months of installation. BK steadfastly refused to deal with this situation. 36 emails back and forth and they absolutely denied these fixtures could leak. They never took care of me on this and as a result I dropped them and have made it my mission to dissuade any other contractor from using their line. If they are so miserable to deal with on one warranty issue, they will be this way on any warranty issue. In the mean time, I have talked to other contractors who have similar opinons of BK's contractor relations. Expensive yes? Willing to support you after the sale?... Not in my experience. They will probably function just fine in an uplight application.

I would check out the Vision3 line if you are leaning towards BK.... Call them up and ask for "their story" you will be impressed.

Regards.